Wrap Up

Middle Mark | October 2020

Hello and welcome to my mid month check in for October! So far I am overjoyed with the books I have read. I cannot believe that we are already halfway through the month, but I am still really happy with the four books I have managed to read. One was a tome too and another was nonfiction!


Will My Cat Eat My Eyeballs?: And Other Questions About Dead BodiesWill My Cat Eat My Eyeballs?: And Other Questions About Dead Bodies by Caitlin Doughty
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Once again, Caitlin Doughty has written a very interesting and morbid book. This is much different than her previous two that I have read. It is set up as someone asks a question about death or death adjacent and she answers the question. Throughout the book she uses science, personal experience, and history to answer the questions which I enjoyed. Her voice is very similar to how she presents herself in her videos, which is great that her personality carries over so well.

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Strange Weather in TokyoStrange Weather in Tokyo by Hiromi Kawakami
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I was not expecting to be so pulled into their companionship, but the writing and structure of their story was beautifully done. I really enjoyed seeing them find each other over and over again.

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A Breath of Snow and Ashes (Outlander, #6)A Breath of Snow and Ashes by Diana Gabaldon
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Another great installment of this historical fiction series. I don’t want to stay too much since this is book 6 in a series, but this one did not disappoint and it holds its own within this saga.

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If It BleedsIf It Bleeds by Stephen King
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Another good collection of short stories by King. It was really nice to see Holly again from the Mr. Mercedes series. I think she is now no of my favorite King characters or at least in the top 3 easily. This collection has 4 stories, three I really liked, the second one I didn’t like too much.

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I am currently reading two books at this point in time. I am reading Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas, I am really loving this book so much and I am so glad I am able to read it. At this time I am only 12% into it and I can tell it will be a contender for a top book of 2020. The second book I am reading is Frankenstein by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley. I am about 8% into this and I am enjoying finally reading this classic horror.


What was the last book you read, did you like it?

How are your reading month coming along? 

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Wrap Up

Middle Mark | September 2020

Hello and welcome to a little reading check in! Every month I do a mid month check in to share what I have finished so far and what I am in the middle of reading. So far, this month is going pretty well, but I entered a bit of a slump, I am hoping it just lasts this week. Fingers crossed! But, on to the books!


Midnight Sun (Twilight, #5)Midnight Sun by Stephenie Meyer
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I got very bored halfway though. The main selling point of this book is seeing more of the Cullens. That is how this book got 2 stars. The rest, really didn’t really keep me engaged and was not really interesting.

View all my reviews The Financial Diet: A Total Beginner's Guide to Getting Good with MoneyThe Financial Diet: A Total Beginner’s Guide to Getting Good with Money by Chelsea Fagan
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

This was a VERY basic finance book that seems to be only for women. If you know anything about basic budgeting you can skip this. But, this could be good for someone who just graduated and is just starting out.

View all my reviews Shiver: Selected StoriesShiver: Selected Stories by Junji Ito
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

As always Junji Ito has an eerie imagination. This is a bind up if twisted tails with curse, monsters, and some out of this world things. Since it was a bind up, I don’t want to say too much other than all were equally creepy and were very distinct. If you like manga and horror I suggest you give it a go. TW for suicide and murder.

View all my reviews One by OneOne by One by Ruth Ware
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

*Book given via netgalley in exchange for an honest review*

Overall, I really enjoyed this thriller. The setting was amazing, the atmosphere was palpable, the characters were interesting as well as their dynamics, and the story fully pulled me in. Once again Ware has proven to be an amazing writer and continues to be one of my auto-buy authors. Even though I received this book for free, I am going to go pick up another on publication day. If you want a good secluded thriller that appears to be a dream come true at first, but turns into a horror, I feel like this is one you should certainly look into.

View all my reviews Tidy the F*ck Up: The American Art of Organizing Your Sh*tTidy the F*ck Up: The American Art of Organizing Your Sh*t by Messie Condo
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A hilarious approach to decluttering and getting your space in order. I laughed quite a few times, but it has some great advice as well. It really got me in the right mindset to get cleaning and sorting.

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I am currently reading two tomes, the firs is 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami and I am about 14% through it. From what I have read, I can see why so many people enjoy it and I am actually excited to pick it up again. The reason I have not is because I like sitting for more than an hour with this book. The second book is A Breath of Snow and Ashes by Diana Gabaldon, I am 36% through this one, I had to stop this one because I was borrowing it from the library. I have it on hold again so as soon as it comes in I will fly through it.


What was the last book you read, did you like it?

How are your reading month coming along? 

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Hauls

Book of the Month | September 2020

Hello and welcome to another unboxing of my subscription of BOTM. This month I am happy to say I actually picked two books for my box and both just sound amazing! I honestly had a really hard time between all the awesome choices. One good things was they had Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson and if I had not bought it the day before I would have picked that one so I was able to pick another as well as a book from a previous month. Now, on to my picks and why I chose them!


Descriptions

Transcendent Kingdom by Yaa Gyasi

Gifty is a fifth year candidate in neuroscience at Stanford School of Medicine studying reward seeking behavior in mice and the neural circuits of depression and addiction. Her brother, Nana, was a gifted high school athlete who died of a heroin overdose after a knee injury left him hooked on OxyContin. Her suicidal mother is living in her bed. Gifty is determined to discover the scientific basis for the suffering she sees all around her.

But even as she turns to the hard sciences to unlock the mystery of her family’s loss, she finds herself hungering for her childhood faith, and grappling with the evangelical church in which she was raised, whose promise of salvation remains as tantalizing as it is elusive. Transcendent Kingdom is a deeply moving portrait of a family of Ghanain immigrants ravaged by depression and addiction and grief–a novel about faith, science, religion, love. Exquisitely written, emotionally searing, this is an exceptionally powerful follow-up to Gyasi’s phenomenal debut. -goodreads

The Shadows by Alex North

You knew a teenager like Charlie Crabtree. A dark imagination, a sinister smile–always on the outside of the group. Some part of you suspected he might be capable of doing something awful. Twenty-five years ago, Crabtree did just that, committing a murder so shocking that it’s attracted that strange kind of infamy that only exists on the darkest corners of the internet–and inspired more than one copycat.

Paul Adams remembers the case all too well: Crabtree–and his victim–were Paul’s friends. Paul has slowly put his life back together. But now his mother, old and senile, has taken a turn for the worse. Though every inch of him resists, it is time to come home.

It’s not long before things start to go wrong. Reading the news, Paul learns another copycat has struck. His mother is distressed, insistent that there’s something in the house. And someone is following him. Which reminds him of the most unsettling thing about that awful day twenty-five years ago.

It wasn’t just the murder.

It was the fact that afterward, Charlie Crabtree was never seen again… -goodreads


Why I Picked These Books

When it comes to Transcendant Kingdom, I picked it because I have been really enjoying hard hitting emotional reads as of late. This book really tells the story of a woman who is spending her life trying to find a way to help her family while they suffer from mental illness, addiction, and loss. I think it will also explore the pressure this puts on Gifty and her struggles that come from this. Not only does this book peak my interest, so does the author. I have heard such wonderful things about this authors outstanding gift when it comes to writings and I just felt like I needed to pick up a book by them.

The second book I picked, The Shadows, was added to my book because I have been into true crime and horror a lot lately and this seemed like a fictional combination of these. On top of that, I have heard promising things about this authors works and I have not read anything by them before.


What was the most recent book added to your TBR?
Does this book sound interesting to you?

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TBR

To Be Read | September 2020

Hello and welcome to another TBR post! This month I have a large stack of books to get through this month, but I am really excited about finally reading a lot of them. I am so close to getting my owned TBR down to the 10s and I am determined to do that this month, fingers crossed! Anyway, onto the books!


Book Stack of Tidy the F*ck Up by Messie Condo, Strange Weather in Tokyo by Hiromi Kawakami, The Test by Sylvain Neuvel, Stay with Me by Ayọ̀bámi Adébáyọ̀, The Financial Diet by Chelsea Fagan, Shiver by Junji Ito, and The Death of Vivek Oji by Akwaeke Emezi.

As you can see, I have quite a book stack for September. I plan on reading 7 books, but I hope for a few more. Also, a huge thank you to those who voted my on poll, it was really helpful!

Tidy the F*ck Up by Messie Condo, so a few years ago I read Marie Konodo’s books and I have been feeling the urge to do the method again, but I wanted to read something different to get the inspiration I need and I came across this parody book and I knew I needed to get it if not for the motivation, but for the laughs as well.

Strange Weather in Tokyo by Hiromi Kawakami, I saw this floating around online a few months ago and after looking further into it, I wanted to read it. I have really been into short stories as of late so I think this will be perfect!

The Test by Sylvain Neuvel, was picked for me to read this month by Heidi over at This is My Bookshelf Blog. I am really looking forward to this one, I am so happy to finally be able to read it and not stare at it on my shelf. The summary I have read for this short story has me thinking I am going to be reading it in one sitting.

Stay with Me by Ayọ̀bámi Adébáyọ̀, now this book I came across by complete chance while browsing my local indie bookstore. The bright cover pulled me in and when I looked at the description my heart broke and I knew I needed to read this story in its entirely.

The Financial Diet by Chelsea Fagan, I picked this up recently because I wanted to learn more about finance and get better with my money. From my understanding, this is more of a starting point and I should in theory already know everything in here, but we shall see.

Shiver by Junji Ito, if you like manga and you like horror, you should look into this author. I read one of his collections and I really liked the creepy vibes, this guy has an imagination that might even put King to shame. I am really in the mood for some good horror so I am finally picking up another one of his works.

The Death of Vivek Oji by Akwaeke Emezi, this was my BOTM pick for August and sadly I was not able to get to it in August, but I really want to read it ini September, it really sounds like it is going to be a great story. Please see my post, Book of the Month| August 2020 for more information!


What are you planning on reading this month?

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Wrap Up

Wrap Up | August 2020

Wrap Up

Hello and welcome to my monthly wrap up for August!  This month I had a little bit of time off of work and I took full advantage by spending quite a few days sitting in bed reading, which I have not done in a while. As a result I read all these books and found a few I absolutely love! Also, a bit of a side note, this is my first post using wordpress’ new format and I have a feeling I might have messed up the formatting, it is really hard to tell. 


Read 2

Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American SlaveNarrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave by Frederick Douglass

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

His well chosen and powerful words speak for themself.

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The HungerThe Hunger by Alma Katsu
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was a very intriguing, imaginative and haunting horror. Not only was this horror atmospheric, but it mixed “real world” horror and monster based horror. This mixed with history only made it just seem even more real. The writing was well done, the pacing, characters, and relationships were all done so well. I will be trying more books from this author in the future.

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American Sherlock: Murder, Forensics, and the Birth of American CSIAmerican Sherlock: Murder, Forensics, and the Birth of American CSI by Kate Winkler Dawson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is my second book by this author and I am pleased that I still enjoy their voice. This was a very interesting look into not only an individual, but also the early field of forensics in the US. This was well researched and also commented on methods used in the past, but also today. It gave a wonderful broad picture of crime science, but it really put into perspective historical true crime that I have previously read. It dd this by going over key cases in Heinrich’s career. If you enjoy true crime, I think you will enjoy.

View all my reviews MarchMarch by Geraldine Brooks
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was a very interesting read that follows the father in Little Women through his young years where he meets Marmee and his time during the Civil War. I really loved this imagined way the enlightened parents met, combined in education, emancipation, and ideals.

They way the author explored Mr. March’s life was very interesting and explored the time period more so than Little Women could at the time. Not only did the book explore slavery and its affects, the underground railroad, survivors guilt, it explored the background to a book I didn’t know I wanted. The author is a talented writer and I will be looking into their other works.

View all my reviews Seventy-Eight Degrees of Wisdom: A Tarot Journey to Self-Awareness (A New Edition of the Tarot Classic)Seventy-Eight Degrees of Wisdom: A Tarot Journey to Self-Awareness by Rachel Pollack
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

One of the best if not thee best tarot book I have read. It explains the symbolism within the cards as well as relates the meanings of the cards to stories and tales. I think this is a great book for someone starting or someone who have read for a while and wants a very detailed and well done review of the cards meanings and history.

View all my reviews Assassination Classroom, Vol. 01Assassination Classroom, Vol. 01 by Yūsei Matsui
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I am not really sure how to review this because I watched the anime first so I already have a connection to the characters, but I still really enjoy the illustrations and sense of humor while reading it as a manga.

View all my reviews Assassination Classroom, Vol. 02: Time for Grown-UpsAssassination Classroom, Vol. 02: Time for Grown-Ups by Yūsei Matsui
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Continues to have a good sense of humor, good plot, and good characters.

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Middle Mark Books 2


Beat the Backlist 2

Start of 2020: 51

Current: 0


Reading Stats


What was your favorite book this month?

Mine was The Hunger by Alma Katsu or Fever Dream by Samanta Schweblin. 

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Hauls

Read 5, Buy 1 | The Happy Failure of July 2020

Read 5, Buy 1

Hello and welcome to my happy failure! I say happy because I added some really awesome authors to my TBR this month. I added 16 books to my TBR to be exact, that is why it is a failure. But, I have to say even with adding 16 books, my owned TBR is still only 26 books.


This first book stack features…

1Q84 by Haruki Murakami

The Beauty of Breaking by Michele Harper

Conjure Women by Afia Atakora

American Sherlock by Kate Winkler Dawson

Girl From Widow Hills by Megan Miranda

Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

This second stack features…

Fever Dream by Samanta Schweblin

G’morning, G’night! by Lin-Manuel Miranda and Johnny Sun

The Secret River by Kate Grenville

Strange Weather in Tokyo by Hiromi Kawakami

Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave by Himself

Smoke and Mirrors by Neil Gaiman

Remarkable Creatures by Tracey Chevalier

After the Quake by Haruki Murakami

Flowers of Mold by Ha Seong-nan

Teen Titians Raven by Kami Garcia and Gabriel Picolo


I am truly pleased to be able to have these books on my shelf waiting to be read. I am for the most part still on schedule to finish my TBR by October as planned as well. I did not see that still being the case after being able to go into a bookstore and browse the shelves again. That is what lead to me getting all these books, I really missed just walking around the store and finding books I have not heard of before.

How did the Read Rush go for you? What have you read this past week?

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Wrap Up

Middle Mark | August 2020

Middle Mark

Hello and welcome to my Middle Mark post for August! This month has started off on a great note. I have read quite a bit and I hit a few of my year long goals as well. I finally hit 30,000 pages for the year as well as finished up reading a book from every continent. Now, to continue to chip away at the others! Any-who, here are the books I have read so far in August.


Read 2

Fever DreamFever Dream by Samanta Schweblin

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Just the perfect eerie book I wanted to read. I actually got quite a few chills reading this horror and I am glad I happened to find it. The whole book felt heavy and it continued to get heavier as I read it. It is one of those rare books that really pulls you into the story and you almost feel like you are in it yourself.

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The DeepThe Deep by Rivers Solomon

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

As many other reviewers have said, this is a very unique read. It was imaginative, creative, but also painful. I say painful because it deals with a grotesque history of slavery and does not sugar coat it or hide some of the more horrendous actions. In addition, the main character battles with their peoples history, I don’t want to say too much because spoilers. I very rarely say this, but I feel like I would have enjoyed this story more if there was more of it. I wanted to explore this community in more detail and learn more about many of the characters. I feel like this was done on purpose though and when you read it that statement will make a bit more sense if it doesn’t now. But, I will say this, I am going to be looking into other works by this author.

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The Secret RiverThe Secret River by Kate Grenville

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

It is very apparent that this author knows a lot of about the history of Australia the movement of deportation of those not wanted in England. This book deals with social hierarchy, laws, exploration, as well as the stealing of lands of its native people. While this book as a lot of academic value, even though it is historical fiction and not non-fiction, it was difficult to get into. I felt like the authors writing style was just blah for me personally. It read more like a textbook than an actual textbook, I had to really push myself. For me, this is a bit out of the ordinary because I love reading non-fiction and rarely have to push myself to read them.

I will say, this book is best read with someone else, this book brings up quite a few topics that are best explored and discussed. As said, it has great academic value and I feel like it show cases society in London/England as well as the early settlement of convict in Australia and the impact on the indigenous inhabitants.

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Smoke and Mirrors: Short Fictions and IllusionsSmoke and Mirrors: Short Fictions and Illusions by Neil Gaiman

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was a good and wide ranging collection of short stories. They are just a bit out there and at times a bit of a horror feel. I felt that every time I finished one I just wanted to read another one. I always find it hard to review a collection as a whole, but overall I enjoyed a majority of these tales.

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You Were Born for This: Astrology for Radical Self-AcceptanceYou Were Born for This: Astrology for Radical Self-Acceptance by Chani Nicholas

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I don’t feel like this is a beginner book, it does have a good amount of information, but if you are using this book just for yourself, most of the information is not usable/applicable. If you are going to do a chart for everyone and their mom, much more useful. Also, bring a protractor.

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The Comedy of ErrorsThe Comedy of Errors by William Shakespeare

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Here is a little preview of my review. Overall, this was an average play. I didn’t see anything that really stood out and I can already feel the details of this one slipping away. There is quite a few mistaken identities, which we have seen a bunch of times already from his works time and time again, just with another bow.

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Gmorning, Gnight!: Little Pep Talks for Me & YouGmorning, Gnight!: Little Pep Talks for Me & You by Lin-Manuel Miranda

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Shel Silverstein esc type pep talks that I just adored! I will be picking this up from time to time, I can see it.

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After the QuakeAfter the Quake by Haruki Murakami

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoy Murakami’s writing style, the short stories were varied, but tied together nicely. Some I liked more than others, but there was not one I disliked. I normally don’t enjoy short story collections, but there is something about hims writing that I enjoy very much.

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Currently Reading 2

As of writing this, August 12th, I am currently reading quite a few books. I was doing so well with reading one book at a time, for some reason this month I am having trouble doing that.

I just started reading me eArc of One by One by Ruth Ware that I received via netgalley. I am really enjoying it so far, I mean I expected to since she is one of my auto buy authors!

I am also 44% through Midnight Sun by Stephenie Meyer the newest addition to the Twilight books. Honestly, so far I am enjoying learning more about the Cullens and their family dynamics.

Last, but certainly not least I am currently reading Conjure Women by Afia Atakora. I am about 13% into this book. Conjure Women is a magical realism and historical fiction novel balled up into one. It follows a young girl from a young age until she is older, whose mother can do magic and she follows in her foot steps and acts as a healer for her community. The time frame and location are in the south during slavery and following after it. So, we get a story that not only of a family that is separated by slavery, but also a look into the practice of slavery. The author holds nothing back in their magical story telling and I appreciate that.


TBR

To Be Read | August 2020

To Be Read

Hello and welcome to my TBR for August. My TBR is a bit larger than it normally is due to the fact I am taking part in a few challenges this month. One of the major ones is hitting 0 books on my owned TBR by October 6th, 2020. At the time of typing this I am on track to meet this goal, so I am excited about that. But, to keep this up I had to keep my reading pace high, but also enjoyable. To meet this goal and others I added all of these books onto my pile for August. I am really confident in reading these books and maybe even a few others, who knows? 


Book Stack Photo


The Books

The Secret River by Kate Grenville, I am reading this as part of my reading a book from every continent. This takes place in Australia being used to send convicts away from Europe as well as discussing those settlers forcibly taking land from local indigenous inhabitants . It is a historical fiction, but I think it will discuss a really important events that not only took place in one part of the world, but all over. From the reviews I am confident in the author giving such a topic the attention is deserves. 

After the Quake by Haruki Mauakami, I picked this up recently on my first visit to my local bookstore. It was the first time. I was able to actually go brows the shop in MONTHS so you will see a few more books on this list from that day. But, that being said I really was intrigued by the description of this book and I look forward to reading it. 

Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave by Himself, I am ashamed to say that I never read this and I am rectifying that this month. I will say, I did read the first few pages at the end of July, but I did not want to rush through this mans words. 

You Were Born For This by Chani Nicholas, I picked this book up as a group read and I kinda forgot about that..oops. But, I am still intrigued so I still pan on reading this. 

The Hunger by Alma Katsu, I picked this book up because I was recommended it from mytbr.co. It sounded really interesting so I have to say first impressions with this service are pretty spot on. Will report when I have read all three books they recommened me. 

American Sherlock by Kate Winkler Dawson, I was really in the mood for some non-fiction last month and I came across this on my stroll around the bookstore so I picked it up. I am interesting in learning about the history of Forensics in the USA.

Fever Dream by Samantha Schweblin, This is another book I picked up for my reading a book from each continent. This books takes place in Argentina. I will be honest, I don’t know much about this book. I saw that it took place in Argentina and that it had the phrase “nightmare come to life” in the description. 

Smoke and Mirrors by Neil Gaiman, I have been slowly reading more and more books by this author and I have enjoyed most of them. I read the description of this novel while walking around my local bookstore and I had to pick it up. I mean how can I turn down a book that is described that can “transform a mundane world into a place of terrible wonders”. 

G’Morning, G’Night! By Lin-Manuel Miranda, I will flat out admit I bought this because I watched Hamilton on Disney+ in July and I wanted to checkout what else he was capable of. I have a feeling I am going to be slowly reading this throughout the month, but we shall see. It seems like a really uplifting book, which I feel like can only help. 


What are you planning to reading this month?

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Wrap Up

Wrap Up | July 2020

Wrap Up

Hello and welcome to my monthly wrap up! I missed out on my middle mark post for the month so be prepared for quite a few mini reviews and well as my monthly stats overall. I think I did good overall this month, I even found a few books I love. The main driving force in my reading amount was The Reading Rush that book place between July 20th-26th. In that readathon alone I ended up reading ___ books that week alone. Anyway, on to the books, the reason you clicked onto this post.


Read 2

LGBTQ Stats: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer People by the NumbersLGBTQ Stats: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer People by the Numbers by Bennett Singer

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Very interesting, the name is very accurate, this book is a lot of questions being answers via data collected via census and polls. It is best read in chunks a little at a time because it reads like a textbook.

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The Five: The Untold Lives of the Women Killed by Jack the RipperThe Five: The Untold Lives of the Women Killed by Jack the Ripper by Hallie Rubenhold

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed learning more about these women instead of just hearing about how they died. It was a very interesting read that I just flew through. I feel like you should give this a try if non-fiction is not really your thing because it does not read like a textbook, which in my eyes is a huge compliment to the author when it comes to non-fiction.

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Civil War Wives: The Lives & Times of Angelina Grimke Weld, Varina Howell Davis & Julia Dent GrantCivil War Wives: The Lives & Times of Angelina Grimke Weld, Varina Howell Davis & Julia Dent Grant by Carol Berkin

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A very interesting and good look into the wives of a couple of the most known individuals during the civil war. It was interesting to have a peak into their lives before, during, and after the war and see if and how they supported their partners, but also if they felt the same as their husbands. In addition, you can learn about the efforts made by some of these women on their own. The writing itself is done very well and the extent of sources is encouraging.

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The TempestThe Tempest by William Shakespeare

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

There are a few things I really liked about this play in particular the first being a ship wreck that reminded me of Odyssey in a way. I am not sure if this was the purpose, but I enjoyed the connection I made. I also liked that in this play there was also magic and magical creatures. As I said about Twelfth Night, I am always a sucker for it. I ended up giving this play 4 stars because I was a bit more into actually reading this and it kept my attention for than Twelfth Night did. It is one of the Shakespeare plays that I actually would not mind reading for a second time, I think Macbeth is the only other one on that list.

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10 Minutes 38 Seconds in this Strange World10 Minutes 38 Seconds in this Strange World by Elif Shafak

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I want to start off by saying that this is one of the most inventive and unique books I have read based upon the idea alone. But, this book is penned by a very talented writing and it just makes the book that much better. The first part of this book follows the 10 min. after death of a woman named Leila, who lived a very interesting life. You learn about her life through various memories that come to her in her last moments of life. It really hits home the “life flashes before your eyes” idea.

The second part discusses humility, society, and just being a decent human and how a system takes that away. How some individuals in life and in death can be discriminated against. It was a very interesting book that not only showed you the life of the characters, but also talked about society and highlighted how friendship can be such a powerful thing. I feel like this is a book I will be rereading because I feel like I can get even more out of it.

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Mexican GothicMexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book is just amazing and I really think it is going to be one of my favorites for this year. It was a wonderfully written horror that had me flipping pages faster than I have in a bit. It reminded me of a few movies and novels, but even with that it was unique and all its own. If you enjoy horror I really think that this is something you might enjoy.

The writing was amazing, the main character was wonderfully written as well as the side characters. Usually side characters are just there, but Moreno-Garcia establishes them so well and they truly are part of the story. On top of the characters the atmosphere was spot on. It reminded me of crimson peak, haunting of hill house, and others. But, like I said, this is truly unique to is all the authors own.

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House of Earth and Blood (Crescent City, #1)House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I am going to be honest, I really went into this book thinking I was going to enjoy it quite a bit. The idea sounded interesting and the world created sounded very interesting, but I was kind of bored reading this… okay very bored. The weird thing is, things were happening, some pretty intense stuff. So, I am not sure how or why I was bored, but I was. I might go back in the future and give this book another go, I might not have been in the right mood for it.

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The Queen of Nothing (The Folk of the Air, #3)The Queen of Nothing by Holly Black

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was a wonderful ending to the series, did not disappoint! Holly Black as always does a great job of writing about fae and does wondering with writing in riddles and such. I give her a lot of credit in doing this because sometimes I can’t figure out the loopholes myself. In other books where there are fae characters I usually can figure it out easily.

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Celtic Mythology: Tales of Gods, Goddesses, and HeroesCeltic Mythology: Tales of Gods, Goddesses, and Heroes by Philip Freeman

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I never thought that some Celtic Myths would make Greek Mythology seem boring. This was a really well done collection of myths that cover a good deal of time and area. I felt that the author framed them very well with giving some historical context as well as organized them well. I enjoyed reading these tails and chances are I will read them again in the future.

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The Night Country (The Hazel Wood, #2)The Night Country by Melissa Albert

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Another great story by Melissa Albert. This was a really enjoyable continuation in this series. A lot was going on and it still held the same magic for me as the first one did. The only downside was there were a few pacing issues for me personally. I am excited to see what happens in the next book!

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Don't Touch My HairDon’t Touch My Hair by Emma Dabiri

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I just finished reading Don’t Touch My Hair by Emma Dabiri, it is a nonfiction that discusses racism and prejudice against blanks historically. The main vein that this particular book follows is based upon hair. I found it to be really interesting and it was a general history of racism touching on three different continents (North America, Europe, and Africa), but it was also a memoir of the author as well. I really annotated this book, I wrote on nearly every page.

The blurb said it best, ” intellectual investigation into black women and the very serious business of our hair, as it pertains to race, gender, social codes, tradition, culture, cosmology, maths, politics, philosophy and history”

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Teen Titans: RavenTeen Titans: Raven by Kami Garcia

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was a really great graphic novel, I really enjoyed seeing this side of Raven. The plot was great, the art work and color scheme was wonderful. I am really glad that the author is adding to this series in September with Beast Boy!

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FirestarterFirestarter by Stephen King

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

At first I was not into this story in the slightest, but I decided to try for a little bit longer. I am glad I stayed with it because I ended up enjoying this quite a bit. It is almost like a different version of The Institute or a precursor to it. It is very different, but has a similar vibe to it if that makes sense. Charlie was a great character and her dad is amazing.

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Home Before DarkHome Before Dark by Riley Sager

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was a very interesting thriller and ghost story. There was a real eerie feeling to this novel, which a horror lover like myself really enjoyed. On top of that the writing was great, you can tell the author really planned this novel out. I look forward to reading more from this author in the future

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The Girl from Widow HillsThe Girl from Widow Hills by Megan Miranda

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is such an amazing thriller, I could not put it down once I picked it up. The writing is top notch, they methods used to tell the story and build the world were wonderful. I recommend anyone who enjoys thrillers.

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The Tale of Mrs WestawayThe Tale of Mrs Westaway by Ruth Ware

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was a wild ride of a short story, it was really interesting to learn more about Mrs. Westaway.

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Beat the Backlist 2

Start of 2020: 51

Current: 2


Reading Stats


What was your favorite book this month?

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Wrap Up

Wrap Up | The Reading Rush 2020

Wrap Up

Hello and welcome to my wrap up post for The Reading Rush! I am still floored at how productive I was during this readathon, I have not done this well in a while. I also had a ton of fun with the instagram challenges on top of the live shows, twitter sprints, and of course the reading itself! Here is how I did.


Pages Read

Above you will see a daily pages read graph; Monday-272, Tuesday-331, Wednesday-240, Thursday-182, Friday-192, Saturday-766, Sunday-366. I read a total of 2,349 pages!


Books Read

  • Celtic Mythology by Philip Freeman
  • The Night Country by Melissa Albert
  • Don’t Touch My Hair by Emma Dabiri (not pictured)
  • Teen Titians Raven by Kami Garcia and Gabriel Picolo
  • Firestarter by Stephen King
  • Home Before Dark by Riley Sager
  • The Girl From Widow Hills by Megan Miranda
  • The Tale of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware (not pictured)

Badges Earned

Made an Instagram, Participated in a read in live show, Participated in Twitter Sprint, Read a Book Completely Outside of Your House, Read a Book in a Genre You Always Wanted to Read More Of, Read a Book That Inspired a Movie You’ve Already Seen, Read a Book That Starts with the Word “The”, Read a Book That Takes Place on a Different Continent Than Where You Live, Read a Book with a Cover the Same Color as Your Birth Stone, Read a Five Star Book, Read Over 1000 Pages, Read the First Book You Touch, Overall 2020 Reading Rush Badge, Make a Booktube Video ( I made an bookstagram video, I don’t need more social media), and lastly Completed 2020 Challenges Badge.


I had such a blast reading all of these books this past week, I read so much more than I thought I would, I was only planning on four and here I ended up reading eight.

How did the Read Rush go for you? What have you read this past week?

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