Tags

Tag | The Liebster Award Vol. 5

TagTimel12:17I was tagged by Kim over at Bookish Kimberly, her blog is a lot of fun to read. She is very kind and her reading taste is wonderful and her reviews are done very well. I highly suggest you checking her blog out.

Divider 2

Previous installments: The Liebster Award | 2018, TAG|The Liebster Award #2, Tag | The Liebster Award #3, and Liebster Award | Vol. 4.

Rules

  • Answer the 11 questions you’ve been asked
  • Nominate 11 other bloggers
  • Ask your nominees 11 questions
  • Let them know you’ve nominated them

Questions

  1. What is your Top 3 book category and genre?
    • My top three currently would be non-fiction, horror, and thriller
  2. Who is your favorite fictional love team?
    • Hum, this is hard I normally don’t pay too much attention to this, but if I had to pick Jo March and Professor Bhaer because they are so supportive of one another and help each other follow their dreams.
  3. What is your all-time favorite fiction book?
    • Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
  4. Which quote (from a book) you like best?
    • I think the etsy shop BookQuoteDecor did a wonderful job embodying my favorite quote. Image result for I;d rather have tea than compliments
  5. Which book character would you like to meet and why?
    • I feel like I would love to meet Molly Weasley. She is a very smart witch and I feel like she would have some great advice and would be very kind.
  6. Are there any book series that you REALLY want to read and finish this year? What are those?
    • I would love to reread the Lord of the Rings series this year. I bought the first book a month or so ago to get my butt going.
  7. Which book character reminds you of a living person in your life and why?
    • I honestly have no idea I don’t really ever come across a character that made me think “This is just like so and so”
  8. What is your favorite nonfiction book?
    • My favorite non-fiction read would have to be The First Tycoon: The Epic Life of Cornelius Vanderbilt by T. J. Stiles. It is a very interesting look into early American politics, business, and also a look at one of the most important men when it comes to industry. While this books focus is on a man, it dives into a lot of the culture and the surrounding world. The First Tycoon - Cornelius Vanderbilt (book cover).jpg
  9. Which book is your least favorite among the mainstream/popular books?
    • I think one of the most “main stream” books I did not enjoy was the Shatter Me series? I read half of the first book and I just could not do it anymore.
  10. If you had to swap places with any book character, who would you choose? Why?
    • I don’t think I would ever do this, you never know what is outside the scope of the story.
  11. Which book would you like to recommend the most and why?
    • The book I recommend the most kinda of changes depending on who I am talking to, but my go to books are; Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, The Haunting of Kill House of Shirley Jackson, 11/22/64 by Stephen King, The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware, Strange Weather by Joe Hill and Unraveling Oliver by Liz Nugent.

My Questions

  1. What book is your go to recommendation?
  2. What was the last 5 star book you read?
  3. Goodreads challenge/reading goal for this year?
  4. Where do you do most of your reading?
  5. How often do you use the library?
  6. What genre do you read the most of?
  7. What genre do you read the least of?
  8. Do you dog ear pages?
  9. Do you drink tea or coffee?
  10. What was the last book you you acquired?
  11. What book do you dislike that everyone seems to love?

I Tag

Kathy @  booksandmunches.com

Victoria @ lattenightsreviews.com

Steffy Jay @ littlebooknooksite.wordpress.com

Liz @ travelinretrospect.com

Lara @ https://naijabookbae.com

Emma @ https://twitter.com/askirmishofwit

JJ Crafts @ https://everthecrafter.wordpress.com

Adrianna @ https://romancebookbinge.com

Zo•E @ http://nuggetstumpblog.com

And as always anyone else who wants to answer these questions!

Divider 2

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

TBR

May TBR | 2019

ToBeRead12:17

Hello and welcome to a new month! May is my favorite month of the year. The first being that the trees and flowers are finally fully alive, but pollen is no longer kicking my butt. The second is that it is my birthday month! I have always loved my birthday, it is a great excuse to have a fun experience with my friends and family. I love organizing fun things for us all to do, one year I planned a tour, another I planned a wonderful dinner. I just love spending time with those who are important to me. What is one thing you love doing on or for your birthday? Do you have a favorite birthday memory?

Anyway, with this month being my birthday month I am not quite sure how much reading I am going to actually be doing, but I know I want to get to a few reads for sure. Without more rambling, her is my TBR!


-The Books-

The Stand by Stephen King

The Stand

This is the book that has been on my phsyical TBR for the longest. I meant to read it a few months ago, but life became a bit crazy and I did not have the time to dedicate a great deal of time to this novel. It is 1327 pages, so this might take me some time. I am excited to read it though. I am also really interested to see how Stephen King handles a post apocalyptic world that dealt with an illness. I have read a few King books that had an apocalyptic theme and I am curious how different they are.

The Mars Room by Rachel Kushner

The Mars Room

This is the next book I plan on reading for my Reading Goals | Reading a Shortlist. I am very interested in reading this novel. This fiction novel deals with the idea of women in prison and the hardships they face, both a physical and mental. I am very curious to find out what placed the main character in prison when she has a young child, said in description. I am also curious to see how this subject is handled. I am unsure of how graphic this read will be, but I am very much intrigued.


-TBR Jar Pick-

This month I want to bring back using my TBR Jar to pick at least one read a month like I have in the past. The past few months I have fallen away from it, but I miss the mini challenge of sorts.

The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker

The Silence of the Girls

I added this book to my TBR in September of last year. It was my Book of the Month pick, I was really interested in this fictional novel that follows women on the sidelines of wars. It goes into detail of these important and often forgotten individuals who have to give up much, fight in their own way, and often be belittled and pushed to the side. I love history and I can tell you that one of my favorite quote is ” For most of history Anonymous was a woman”. I wish I knew who said it, but it is very true and I am excited to read this novel that give those anonymous women a voice and a story, even if it is historical fiction.


What are you reading this month?

Have you read any of these books? What do you think of my choices?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Tags

Tag | My Good Reading Habits

TagTimel12:17If you have not noticed, I am finally catching up on a bunch of tags I have been slacking on. This weeks tag is a fun one and I was really happy to get tagged by Meeghan over at Meeghan Reads. I really love this tag because it is so different for each person who does it.

Rules:

  • Pingback to this post or the creator!
  • List some of your good reading habits, the things you think you do well.
  • Nominate some of your blogging friends

Divider 2

My Good Reading Habits

DNFing Books

As I have learned that if I am not enjoying a book I need to put it aside. If I force myself to read something that is not my cup of tea I will either read it very slowly, get into a reading slump, or I will justify end up not liking everything. It kind of ruins my reading mood in general. So, I have realized it is okay to DNF a book, I can always try again in the future if I feel the need to.

Setting Realistic Reading Goals

While goals are important, I have to say that making them realistic is important. I try to make my reading goals difficult, but always achievable when I put in effort. You can see my most recent reading goals here: Reading & Blog Goals | 2019 First Quarter Check In.

Setting Reading Time Aside

I always my a point to set time aside almost every day if not every day to read. I know for me, making this a priority really helps me relax at the end of the day or after a really stressful event or day.

Using the Library

I use my local library at least a few times a month. I think it is really important to support them as well. Due to the fact that I read so much I support them by donating books when they accept them as well as buying books from the library sale. I also do my best to help them during fund raisers.


I Tag:

Read by Tiffany

Travel in Retrospect

Thrifty Bibliophile

Bookish Kimberly

Northern Plunder

And anyone who wants to jump in!

Divider 2

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Wrap Up

Monthly Wrap Up | March 2019

Monthly Wrap Up

The second half of this reading month was a bit slower than the first half. The main reason is I was super tired and had no down time until the last week of the month. Since then I have picked up some new yarns to crochet and listened to a few audiobooks.

This month, even though the second half was a bit much, I read more than I have in February, where I read only 4 books. This month I was able to read 5 books, yay progress! Plus, one of them was The Count of Monte Cristo, so I feel like I read A LOT, especially if I look at it page wise. Now, on to the books!

Divider 2

Read 2

Neverworld WakeNeverworld Wake by Marisha Pessl

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Before I started to read this book, I love the idea of this book. Now that I have read it I can happily say the execution of this story was wonderful. The author is a very talented writer and did a great job with this novel. The authors were interesting and their personalities were interesting. The shenanigans the characters went through were sometimes so out of this world, which for the idea of this book, that makes a lot of sense.

I really enjoyed the mixture of thriller and science fiction. The intertwining of these two generous was done masterfully in my option. Her writing had me hooked on this book, I needed to know what happened next.

View all my reviews


The Thing Around Your NeckThe Thing Around Your Neck by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is the second work I have read by Chimamanda and I really enjoyed this collection of stories. Each story revolves around a women that is forced to face unfortunate situations in both Africa and the United States. The theme of family, identity, and culture intertwines each of them.

Her writing is beautiful, the struggles broke my heart, and the internal and eternal struggle these women had to face were eye opening.

I will be reading more from her in the future.

View all my reviewsDivider 2

Middle Mark Books 2

If you want to read about the books I read in the first half of March in more detail, you can find those here: Middle Mark | March 2019.

Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire, 5 stars

If, Then by Kate Hope Day, 4 stars – received from publisher

The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas, 4 stars

Divider 2

Currently Reading 2

The Things I Would Tell You: British Mu…

The Things I Would Tell You: British Muslim Women Write Edited by Sabrina Mahfouz 

I am currently about 22% through this book as of writing this late on the 30th of March. I picked this up on a whim at my local bookstore because I had a coupon and gift card. I previously have heard about it. The title alone sounds like these are short stories and poems that are meant to truly share their experiences, their feelings, hopes and dream, but also their fears. As of right now each ones of the poems and stories are powerful in their own way and I cannot wait to read more after I finish typing this up.

Divider 2

Beat the Backlist 2

Current TBR: 41

Current Backlist TBR: 18

Divider 2

What book did you read and love this month?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Goals

Reading & Blog Goals | 2019 First Quarter Check In

Reading Goals NEW

I cannot believe a quarter of the year is nearly already over, but you know that means it is time to check into my yearly goals to see my progress and see if I need to adjust myself to reach my goals. If you want to see the entire post explaining my 2019 goals, you can read that post here: Reading Goals | 2019 Edition. Anyway, I thought I would do a brief list of the goals and then I would do a but of commenting on them. I also want to share my updated yearly goals spread in my bullet journal. I am a very visual person so having that in my bullet journal really helps.

Divider 2

-My Goals-

  1. Read all of the short listed books for the 2018 Man Booker Prize
  2. Read a book set in each of the 7 continents
  3. Read 50 books
  4. Read 30,000 pages
  5. Read at least one book per month from the library
  6. Read 12 non-fiction books
  7. Read a book recommended by someone I look up to
  8. Read my classic of 2019, War and Peace
  9. Take part in 2019 Beat the Backlist
    • My backlisted books are here.

Divider 2-My Updates-

1. At this time I have only read 1 of the 6 books from this shortlist.

Washington BlackWashington Black by Esi Edugyan

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book is such an adventure, it starts with a young boy, age 11. Sadly, he is a slave on a sugar plantation in Barbados run by two brothers. The author wrote a beautiful book that shows the ugly that is slavery. It talks about awful psychological games played by owners and the bad treatment many had to endure unfairly. I also like how the author showed abolitionists and aspects of the underground railroad. The dangers of faced by those who escaped and freed those who did not belong to them. I also really enjoyed the science, art, and almost steampunk elements. I am honestly not doing this book justice, but I will say it was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2018 and it is well deserved. I also have to agree with the quote on the front of my book calling it a masterpiece.

View all my reviews

2. At this time I have read 2 books for this goal. I have read for North America and Europe. I have picked up three more books for this challenge. Those being Africa, Antartica, and Asia. If you have any recommendations for South America, please share!

3. At this time I have read 19 books, I am 9 books ahead of schedule!

4. At this point in time I have read 9498 pages, so I am nearly a third of the way to my goal. So theory I should be finishing this before the year is out and I am on track.

5. So far I gave stuck to that, at minimum I have read a book a month from the library.

6. Looking at the 19 books I have read this year, a total of 6 books have been non-fiction. So, I am already 50% done with this goal.

7. At this time I have read 0 books for this goal, I did buy Milkman by Anna Burns, but with recent reviews I am a little afraid to pick it up. I have very similar taste in books to one of my friends and she did not enjoy it, I think she told me she DNFed it or struggled to read it.

8. At this time I have read 2 sections of the 17 I set up for the year. I am a bit behind because I focused on reading Monte Cristo with Jenna and put War and Peace on the back burner. I plan on picking it back up in April.

9. As of writing this I am going very well with my backlist. I have 20 books on my backlist, which I am very ecstatic about!

Divider 2

-Bullet Journal Spread-

Overall, for only being a quarter into the year, I think I am doing very well for myself. I know with the OWLs Readathon coming up I will be getting though many more books as well. Plus, I do a lot of reading in the warmer months of the year and I have plenty of time.

Divider 2

How are your goals progressing so far? What goals did you get for yourself in 2019?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

 

Writing and More

Bullet Journal | March 2019

Recs

Hello everyone, I just wanted to share a few pictures of my bullet journal today. This month I am very much following the theme from this months Boho Berry Box, you can see all the things inside here, Unboxing Boho Berry | March 2019. I really loved the theme and instead of just adding it to another theme or using bits and leaving others I decided to embrace everything and use as much as I could. Here are my March spreads!

Divider 2

I want to star off by sharing the spread I added to my bullet journal since last month. If you have not seen my posts about me trying to have an indoor garden I till leave that here, Indoor Garden Adventures| January 2019. Anyway, I wanted to make a spread that would help me care for my new plants. As you can see the left is all filled out, but the right I just have a sketch. I am currently waiting for my Queen Pothos to arrive so I wanted to make sure I left room to add, but I love how it came out!


Here is my March dashboard of sorts and my monthly calendar of events. I decided to try using the Faber and Castell Gelatos on these two pages. I really like the colors, but they do not work well on this paper, I blame the paper, it is bad paper! Anyway. I added a few stickers and used washi tape to set the tone of this months theme. Also, sorry for the horrible editing on the picture, I just wanted to keep a few things a surprise!


This month I am using a mood tracker for the first time. I wasn’t quite sure what types of books to add so I picked calm, happy, anxious and sad/mad. If you have any suggestions that you think might work a little better let me know. On the right I added my habit tracker, this month I kept all the categories, but I added crocheting. I am currently working on a baby blanket and I need to get it done by the end of the month. I am hoping having it trackable will help me get my butt in gear.


Here is my tried and true reading/book tracker. I have really been loving this tracker and how visual it is. As you can see I plan on reading, for certain, these three books so I have them already penciled in and color coded.


Here are my chapter trackers for the books I am reading. I have a square for each chapter or section and I have not colored in my total progress into War and Peace and The Count of Monte Cristo yet because when I took these pictures it was still February and I didn’t want to get too far ahead of myself.


On the left is where I plan off of my blog posts, sometimes I plan ahead and other times I don’t it really depends on my mood. At least point I can say I have about a week ahead planned, which works well for me. On the right I have my TBR for March, if you want some more details you can read my post, March TBR | 2019.


This month I added a to do section for those larger projects that won’t really be taken care of on a particular day. I also wanted to give you a little peak into what my dailies look like.

With that, those are the spreads I have added since February, I hope you enjoyed this little peak inside my bullet journal!

Divider 2

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Wrap Up

Monthly Wrap Up | February 2019

WrapUp12:17

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

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

Divider 2Read 2

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

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

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

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

View all my reviews


Save the DateSave the Date by Morgan Matson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

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

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

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

View all my reviews

 

Divider 2

Middle Mark Books 2

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

Divider 2

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

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Life, DIYs, & Cooking

Operation Find a Hobby | Making a Baby Blanket

FindAHobby

Long time no talk about my other hobbies! Over the course of this series, which you can read more here: Operation Find a Hobby, I explored quite a few hobbies. Since then some have stuck and others not so much. One that I did not post in that series was crochet. The reason why I had not posted about that topic is because I have previously dabbled in it, but it never stayed with me. Most of the books I was using as a reference were either confusing and my in person resources were limited.

Over the last few months I have gotten more and more into it. I made a simple scarf in December and a couple of hats for friends and my boyfriend. Now I am taking on a much larger project and it is nothing like I have done before and I wanted to share it with all of you.

So, for months I have been loving zig zag edged blankets. Something about them being irregular in a sense really appeals to me. For a while my friend and I have tried a bunch of different methods and she even asked a few people she knew who have been doing it for YEARS, DECADES actually, and still I had no luck with being able to figure out a pattern until I came across the site called Daisy Farm Crafts. I found her post called Crochet Berry Chevron Baby Blanket.

The pattern they made was exceptionally easy once I got the hang of it and I really enjoyed that there were some videos within the pattern to help you visually see the stitches when the abbreviations, which are new to me, were confusing. I would suggest you checking out their blog and seeing the patterns they have. I plan on trying more of them in the future, that is for sure.

Divider 2

-My Current Progress-

While I am not very far into this project, I am very proud that I have finally mastered the zig zag pattern, but also learned how to do the berry stitch. Which, for me was very overwhelming because there seems to be about 6 or 7 steps for just one. Anyway, like I said I am not far into this project, but I wanted to share with you some of the things I am working on in my life and I thought this would be a perfect addition to the Operation Find a Hobby series.

Divider 2

Do you crochet? What should I try to crochet next? What is your favorite hobby outside of reading?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

 

Lets Talk

Lets Talk | Five Star Predictions

LetsTalk12:17

So, for readers there is nothing better than a 5 start book. As I read more and more I have been able to determine if I will like a book, but I find it harder to predict a 5 star read. So, I wanted to flex that muscle a little and really take a hard look at my TBR and see if I can predict some 5 star reads.

When I rate a book 5 stars it means a few things. First, the plot and characters were really enjoyable. It was not completely predictable and flowed nicely. Characters were not annoying or if they character has a fault it is to display a particular lesson or commenting on something else through their writing. I have to find myself surprised, angry, happy, excited, elated in combination or separate. The characters need to be distinct. But, overall I need to enjoy the ride, then entire ride.

5stars

Divider

My Predictions

The Overstory by Richard Powers

The Overstory

After reading this description I knew I needed to have this book. It seems like a mixture of magical realism and science? Also, kind of a sad future we may be heading for? It seems like a warning letter to what we as a planet to become and honestly, I just really love the idea of this book so much.

The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker

The Silence of the Girls

I picked this as a Book of the Month book late last year and I vividly remember it being the second description I read and knowing right away that I needed to have it. It tells a story of women throughout history who have done so much for the world, but have remained silent, it seems like a historical fiction of sorts.

Bringing Down the Colonel by Patricia Miller

Bringing Down the Colonel: A Sex Scandal of the Gilded Age, and the "Powerless" Woman Who Took on Washington

I got this book as a gift and I love it so much. I have heard whispers of this case, but I am very excited to learn more about it. Since it is was one of the first major cases of a women coming forward and saying she was assaulted by a man in power. It seems like it will be a very hard hitting factual book.

The Mars Room by Rachel Kushner

The Mars Room

I will be 100% honest here. I am basing this off of the cover. I know, don’t judge a book by the cover, but the vibe I am getting from the cover has me really excited. Also, to be fair I would not have bought this book if it was not part of my Reading Goals | Reading a Shortlist. But, I am very happy I did because the description is interesting as well.

The Wicked King by Holly Black

The Wicked King (The Folk of the Air, #2)

I really loved the first book in this series, The Cruel Prince, and I have love quite a few of Holly Blacks novels in the past. So, I think it is safe to say that I will love this one as well.

Divider

What was your last 5 star read? What do you think about my predictions?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

 

TBR

February TBR | 2019

ToBeRead12:17

Hello and welcome to my February TBR, my first one of 2019. Last month I didn’t feel like making a TBR because I wanted to focus on reading some classics and finishing the books I started. Since I am finished with those I thought it was time to make one. I am going to make this post short and sweet so without more of a delay, here is my TBR!

Divider

Save the Date by Morgan Matson

Save the Date

This book I am kinda ashamed to still have on my TBR. I picked it up when I met Morgan Matson at BookCon 2018. She was so nice and lovely, we had a great laugh about my corgi lanyard. I have read and loved previous books by her, but for some reason I have not picked this up. I think it is because I have not been in the mood for a contemporary. I think I am finally in the mood for it though. I want something light after all the intense reads of last month.

World Without End by Ken Follett

World Without End (Kingsbridge, #2)

This is the next book in the Kingsbridge series, which I started last year due to the Haul | Bookseller Picks My Books post I did. I ended up loving the first book, a very large historical fiction. I ended up going out right away and getting the second book, but I did not feel like reading such a large book right away. So, I decided now is finally the time since the 3rd book has finally came out in paperback and I can get that if I end up liking this one just as much.

DividerTBR Jar Pick

The Stand by Stephen King

So it seems that I will be reading quite a few large books this upcoming months and I am not sure how well that is going to go, but I am going to do my best to at least finish this TBR jar pick. I have been wanting to read this for sometime, but since it is so large I have been putting it off because I felt like I did not have the time to dedicate to it. While I do have the paperback edition, the cover you can see below, I think I might get the ebook edition so I can carry it around with me without having the weight of it.

The Stand

Divider

What are you reading this month?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads