Wrap-up & Favorites || February

February is over, and I had a pretty good month. I’m slowly getting back into reading, and I think I’ve found my love for it again. I’ve had exams in February, and a small winter break to get me ready for school once again. I’ve read some great books, and I don’t think there has been any that I disliked. Because I’m still trying to get back from a reading slump, I’m consciously choosing books that I’m pretty certain that I’ll like. Hopefully I’m going to venture out of my comfort zone a little bit in the coming months. We’ll see.

What I've Read
I read 6 books in the month of February. Two of them were graphic novels, and the rest were novels. I got myself caught up with a series (if you don’t count short stories), and I’ve started some new ones. Overall I’ve enjoyed the books that I’ve read, and I feel like I’ve been able to take my time with them, and not just rush through them (I’ve been known to do that). I have reviews coming up of some of these books, most of them actually, so I wont talk more about them here. 

Books Acquired
Because I passed my English exam, I decided that it was okay to treat myself to some books. Real, actual, physical books. I didn’t spend that much money on books in February, even though I did get a good amount of books anyway.

Physical books:
Cam Girl by Leah Raeder
Black Iris by Leah Raeder
Just Visiting by Dahlia Adler

All The Birds In The Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
Underneath Everything by Marcy Beller Paul
Something Like Hearts by Jay Bell
Am I Normal Yet? by Holly Bourne
Kindred Spirits by Rainbow Rowell

What I've Watched
February was the month of Prison Break. I started re-watching it at the beginning of February as a way to escape from my exams, and I continued even after the exam was over. I’ve watched most of the series before, except for season 4, which is what I’m watching now, so I’m excited to finally get to finish the series properly. I also went to the cinema with my brother in February. We had a gift certificate, and decided to use that to watch Deadpool. I really loved that movie, and I’m definitely interested in watching it again when it comes out on DVD. Lastly I re-watched Clue about 4 times in February. It’s one of my all time favorite movies, and when times got though, it's my 'comfort movie'.

Things I've Listened to
In February I really jumped on the Hamilton bandwagon. The music from that show is absolutely fantastic, and it’s something new, which I really like. I have my favorites that I listen to more than others, but as a whole, it’s pretty darn amazing. I’ve also really gotten into Kendrick Lamar lately. I’ve had a song or two of his on one of my playlist before, but I’ve never really taken the time to really listen to him. I’m slowly getting through more and more of his songs, and it's brilliant. Lastly, I’ve had one song on repeat for the past days, and that is Halsey’s cover of Love Yourself. I love her voice, and what it brings to the song, and I think I like it a little better than the original.

Favorite Moments
February was made up of a lot of great moments (as well as some pretty shit ones, but this is a positive post, so we aren't talking about those). In the beginning of the month I had my written English exam, and honestly, it was absolute hell. Six hours of constant writing, well, it was more like six hours of constant panicking. A week after my written, I had the oral part of the exam, and I passed, with a pretty decent grade even. It was such a relief to finish English, and it means that I'm technically an English teacher now.

In the middle of the all the exam prep, i decided that I needed a change, and I cleaned my room. It doesn’t sound like that much, but for me it was a pretty big deal. I decided that I needed to get rid of a lot of crap, and damn did it feel liberating. With cleaning my room came cleaning out my book shelve, and in that process I got rid of a lot of books Well technically, they’re still just sitting on my floor, but I’m not going to keep them much longer.

This last moment is incredibly silly, but at the same time, it has made me ridiculously happy. That is the fact the Shane McMahon, Shane-O-Mac, has returned to WWE, and he is going to wrestle The Undertaker at Wrestlemania. I know, it’s silly, but I’m counting it as a favorite moment, because it made me smile so big. 

How was your February? Did you read any great books?


Review | The Girl In 6E by A.R. Torre

Title: The Girl in 6E
Author: A.R. Torre
Published: Janurary 21st 2014
Pages: 352
Format: eBook
Genre: Thriller, Erotica
Rating: ★★★★
Find on: Goodreads

I haven't touched a human in three years. That seems like it would be a difficult task, but it's not. Not anymore, thanks to the internet. I am, quite possibly, the most popular recluse ever. Not many shut-ins have a 200-member fan club, a bank account in the seven-figure range, and hundreds of men lining up to pay for undivided attention. They get satisfaction, I get a distraction. Their secret desires are nothing compared to why I hide... my lust for blood, my love of death. Taking their money is easy. Keeping all these secrets... one is bound to escape. What if you hid yourself away because all you could think of was killing? And what if one girl's life depending on you venturing into society?

I went into this book not really knowing what to expect. I’ve seen it around the book community a little bit, but not enough to know more about it that what the synopsis was giving me. When I put this book down at the end, I was pleasantly surprised. It’s not that I expected to not like the book, but I was somewhat hesitant. I’ve read thrillers before, and I’d like to believe that I’ve read my fair share of sex scenes, but the combination? That was something else, and I really liked it.

I found the book to be less graphic than what I expected it to be. Because of the synopsis, I was prepared for much more than what was actually presented to me. However, I quite liked the way that it was balanced out. There definitely are some quite graphic scenes, both sexually, and when it comes to something gorier, but I never found it to be too much. Nonetheless, the book is quite twisted, so keep that in mind if you decide to pick it up.

“Pity is a bitch I’d like to avoid.”

The first half of the book seemed very slow, and it took me a while to actually get into the story. There’s a lot of background information, back story, and build up done, and it took me some time to process all of that. However, right around the 50% mark shit gets real pretty fast. The book really picks up, and everything happens way too fast for my liking. The last bit just seemed a little too crammed, and before I knew it, it was all over, which is a bit of a shame. I would have liked for it to be a little more fleshed out.

I really liked the main character Deanna. I loved seeing how she progressed throughout the story, but also getting a lot of back story on her in the process. Even though a lot of her thoughts and actions may seem a little out there, she seemed like a real, and realistic, character. She’s a smart girl, which shows in the way she’s made a living for all those years she’s been indoors.

While Deanna’s is the main point of view, we do get snippets from some of the other characters once in a while. It was a little confusing in the beginning, because I wasn’t prepared for the switch. But after a while I got used to the style of the switches. I liked the fact that we didn’t just stick with one throughout the entire book. It made the book a little more daunting, because we actually got the perspective of 'the bad guy' in the story.

I wasn’t really a fan of some of the other characters. We get to see a good deal of Deanna’s deliveryman, and I’m still not sure how I feel about him. A lot of times he seemed very out of place, even though he does prove to be helpful. Still, I’m not exactly a fan of his character.

I enjoyed the writing style, and I definitely really enjoyed the book, and I’m very interested in seeing where the next book will take Deanna.


Weekend Reads || Going Back to Hogwarts

So, I think I need to get some life back into this blog, don’t you guys think? I’ve been so stressed out with school, and exams, that I've been neglected this. But now that my exams are finally over (I’m qualified to teach English now, which is pretty awesome! Don’t expect me to know proper grammar though, because I still don’t), I can put some more time into my blog again. I start school again on Wednesday, and I hope to prepare some blog posts, so that I won't neglect this again. 

Today I want to share with you, the books that I plan on reading this weekend. I have a lot of time to myself, and I really just want to get some reading done before school starts again. I’m currently reading The Wolf Wilder by Katherine Rundell, and I'm enjoying it so far. I have about 100 pages left of the book, and I'm interested in seeing where those last pages will take the story, because right now, I'm not really sure where it'll all go.

For the rest of the weekend, I have two books lined up. The first is Nimona by Noelle Stevenson. It’s a library book, and I’d like to read it before I have to return it. I’ve heard a lot of people talk about this graphic novel, and I’m looking forward to reading it. It has gotten a lot of great reviews, and it seems I have a feeling that I’ll get through this book fairly quickly, and it just seems like a good read for the weekend. 

Lastly, I would like to start Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban this weekend. Truth Time – I have only read the first two books in the Harry Potter series, and I feel like it is time to start reading the rest of the books. I don’t think I’ll actually finish it this weekend, but I would like to at least start it. I really do want to try and finish the Harry Potter series this year, so I better get started! I read the first 40 pages of this a few years back, and I remember really liking it, so I think it's time to go back to Hogwarts. Finally!

What books are you planning on reading this weekend?


Mini Reviews | First Reads of the Year

Title: Drama
Author: Raina Telgemeier
Published: September 1st 2012
Pages: 240
Format: Paperback
Genre: MG, Graphic Novel, lGbtq
Find on: Goodreads

This was my first read of 2016, and I really enjoyed reading it. It was a pretty quick read, both because it was a graphic novel, but also because its intended audience is middle grade. It is definitely a read that I would recommend for someone who want to read a fun, quick, middle grade graphic novel, or just to younger readers in general.

There is a lot of typical middle school drama going on in this book - which is kind of hinted to in the title - and it was portrayed really well. The story was a little all over the place at times, but isn't that just how middle school is?

The main character is likable, and she is a joy to follow. She acts like someone her age would, and the way she reacts to the different things in the book are all very realistic. I like the fact that she is so passionate about her role in the school play - which is the set designer. She's very responsible, energetic, and kind of all over the place - but in a very likable way.

There's a big focus on friendship in this book, and they were all portrayed really well. There is some love/relationship stuff going on, but it doesn't really take over the main part of the story. There are some lgbtq+ characters in this books, and I very much enjoyed reading about them. I liked the fact, that it wasn't the main plot of the story, but that it just kind of fell into it naturally - if that makes sense.

Title: The Sculptor
Author: Scott McCloud
Published: February 3rd 2015
Pages: 488
Format: Hardcover
Genre: Graphic Novel
Find on: Goodreads

First of all, I really loved the art in this graphic novel. Second of all, this is a brick of a book, like, I felt like I was going to break my back when I had to bring this home from the library. But I also understand why it is as big as it is. There are a lot of panels where it's just the pictures telling the story, and I really enjoyed those parts.

This book has a lot of hype, and it is very well loved. However, for me, this was just an okay book. The plot was interesting, and it raised some pretty difficult and complicated questions, but it wasn't enough for me.

I didn't feel connected with the main character, and to be honest, I didn't actually like him at all. I don't know if you're supposed to like him, but still. Also, I felt like there was a lack of female characters in this book. There's the main love interest, and then there's her roommate. But mostly, that is it. It is very male dominated, and I missed some female representation, and for that sake, some female interaction.

All in all, this wasn't really my cup of tea, but I can see why people would absolutely love this graphic novel, so I would recommend that if you find it intriguing, then give it a go, it might be just your thing.

Title: George
Author: Alex Gino
Published: August 25th 2015
Pages: 195
Format: Hardcover
Genre: MG, lgbTq
Find on: Goodreads

This was such a wonderful read. This book has been on my radar ever since sit was released last year, and I'm so glad that I finally read it. It is an important book, and I would recommend this to pretty much everyone. It is a really heartwarming story, and it will probably make you smile, and give you the warm fuzzies. The ending of this book made me smile so much, and I shed a tear or two while reading it. There were a lot of beautiful moments throughout this book.

The writing in the book was simple, maybe even a little too simple sometimes, but I really didn't mind at all. However, it its primary target is middle grade, so it is understandable that the writing is on the simpler side. That is not to say that the writing was bad, not at all - simple isn't bad.

I thought that the main character, Melissa, was adorable, and I really liked her. She was the absolute sweetest, and I loved getting to hear her story. I liked the fact that she was so sure of herself, and who she was. You were rooting for her throughout the entire book. I also think that her best friend was a great character, their friendship was really well done. I loved the fact that the best friend was supportive of our main character.

I you loved this book, the I would definitely recommend picking up Gracefully Grayson, if you haven't read that one yet. The stories have similar themes, and they both include a school play, but they are still very different books. And both are very worth the read.


Let's Talk About | 16 Books In 2016

In one of my last posts I shared my Bookish resolutions for 2016, and in there, I said that I wanted to read 16 specific books throughout the year. In this post I want to share those 16 books, and maybe give a little explanation as to why they are on the list. Now, these were all released before 2016, because I want to try and read the books that I already have on my shelves. The majority of the books are young adult and contemporary, and a lot of them have LGBTQ+ main characters. 

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling (MG/Childrens, Fantasy)
I need to get on with this series. I read the first two books years ago, and for some reason I have yet to continue with the series. Seriously, I'm bad at series. I’ve heard that this is a lot of people’s favorite of the Harry Potter books, so that makes me excited.

Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo (YA, Fantasy)
So many people have praised this series, and it sounds so interesting. I'm honestly not much of a fantasy reader, but I want to start reading more from that genre, and I think that this will be an good place to start. Or it won't, we'll see. 

The Art of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson (YA, lgbTq+)
When this book first came out, I didn't really pay it that much attention. Then my cousin read it, and she loves it, and she has told me to read this ever since. So, this year I plan on picking it up, and I hope to love it as much as my cousin did. Also, it deals with an important topic, so that's one more reason to read it.

Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour (YA, Lgbtq+)
I desperately need to read more f/f books, and this is on the top of my list. I've heard multiple good things about this, and it's been on my shelve for a while, so I think it's time to finally pick it up. 

Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin Talley (YA, Lgbtq+)
I actually gave a copy of this to my cousin for Christmas, even though I haven’t read myself. Yet. I've heard people raving about this book, and I really like the premise of the story. I hope to pick this one up, sooner rather than later.

More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera (YA, lGbtq+)
This book is not on the top of my imaginary tar pile, but that is not to say I'm not excited to read it. I am, but I just have some books other books I want to get to before this. But it is on this list for a reason, and I will read it this year.

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon (YA, Contemporary)
I talked about this one in my last Top Ten Tuesday post. It’s a book that was very talked about last year. It has gotten a lot of great reviews, and the premise of this story sounds really intriguing. 

Because You’ll Never Meet Me by Leah Thomas (YA, Contemporary)
I don't know much about this one other than what the goodreads summary has told me. However, just from that, I'm pretty excited for this one. From what I can tell, it focuses a lot on the friendship between the two male characters, which is kind of a rare thing to see in YA, and that makes me even more excited to read it.

Your Voice Is All I Hear by Leah Scheier (YA, Contemporary)
From what I can tell, this book deals with love, and with mental illness. I haven't read that many books that has a protagonist with a mental illness, and that has to change. It's important to get those voices out, and be heard. I'm very excited to start this one - and I plan on doing so within the next couple of months.

Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld (YA, Lgbtq+)
I’ve never read anything by Scott Westerfeld, but I’ve heard good things about his writing. Of the books he has written, I think Afterworlds would be something right up my alley. Also, as far as I know there is a some f/f romance in this. 

Something Like Spring by Jay Bell (lGbtq+)
This is one of my favorite series of all time, and I’m very eager to continue it. I adore Jay Bell’s writing, and it’s always a joy to read his books - even though they will make me weep. This book features some new characters, which is always a delight when it comes to this author.

All Lined Up by Cora Cormack (NA, Contemporary)
I’ve read Losing It by the same author before, and it was and okay book, but nothing to write home about. Even though I didn’t enjoy the story that much, I did like the writing a lot, so I want to see if this book is more my cup of tea. It sounds pretty interesting, and I’ve heard some really great things about it.

Off Campus by Amy Jo Cousins (NA, lGbtq+)
This series keeps popping up on my goodreads. I’ve read a short story by this author before, and I enjoyed it, so I want to try and read something more of her work. It seems like it's going to be my cup of tea, and if I like this first book, there are luckily a lot more in the series.

Under the Lights by Dahlia Adler (YA, Lgbtq+)
I was so excited when I bought this book, and I have no idea why I haven’t read it yet. I haven’t read anything else by the author, but I’ve heard some amazing things about her writing. Again, I need more f/f stories, so I'm pretty sure this is a must read.

Only EverYours by Louise O’Neill (YA, Science Fiction/Dystopian)
So many people have sung this book’s praises, and it’s made me want to read it so much. I bought it last year, with every intention of reading it, but I never made it that far. It’s very high on my want to read list – as well as Louise O’Neill's other book, Asking For It.

The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily M. Danforth (YA, Lgbtq+)
I’ve been told so many times that I need to read this book – but it's long. I know it’s “only” about 470 pages, but for a contemporary novel, that seems like a lot. It’s kind of intimidating, and I’m glad that I have it in ebook format, because I’ve seen a physical copy of it, and it’s a brick. But I’m excited to finally get to it this year – which I very much aim to do.

These are the 16 books I really want to read in 2016. Do you have any books, you feel like you just need read this year?


Top Ten Tuesday | 2015 Releases I Meant To Get To, But Didn't

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme/feature hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. This week I'm letting you all know about the 2015 releases, that I wanted to read, but never got around to. 

Now, there are a lot more than these, but we could be here all day, if I were to talk about all of them. Some of these I own already, which is a step in the right direction, and some I have yet to get. But all of these are books that I hope to get to sometime in 2016.

1. Just Visiting by Dahlia Adler
I've heard nothing but amazing things about this one, and I really want to read it. It sounds very interesting, and it's definitely on the top of my to-buy list, and of course my want to read list.

2. Steam by Stacey Rourke
It's crazy that I haven't actually read this one yet. It's the last in The Legends Saga (that I know of), and the first two books in that series were amazing. I think the only reason I haven't actually read this one yet, is that it's a kindle book, and I hate reading on my phone. But I will get to it this year! I have to!

3. The Porcupine of Truth by Bill Konigsberg
I read Openly Straight by the same author last year, and I really enjoyed it, so I wanted to check out some of his other work. Sadly I didn't get around to reading it, but hopefully 2016 will be the year for that.

4. Read Me Like A Book by Liz Kessler
I kind of bought this on a whim last year, and I haven't actually heard that much about it. But it does have an interesting premise, and I do want to read it sometime this year. I mean, it's about a girl figuring out her feelings for others of the same gender, so I'm very interested in this.

5. The Art of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson
This is a book I've heard a lot of great things about. I know that my cousin loved this book, and she has been telling me to read it ever since she finished it. I have it on my shelves, so it's just a matter of picking it up.

6. Black Iris by Leah Raeder
Actually all of Raeder's book are on my want to read list, and I kinda want to add Cam Girl to this point as well. I've heard amazing things about the book, and I need to get my hands on this somehow. Soon, I hope.

7. More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera
So many people have raved about this book, and I've seen it on a lot of people's favorites lists last year. It's a book that's sitting on my shelf for a while now, and I just have to pick it up. In a couple of months maybe.

8. My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga
This, I've heard some mixed things about, but I still very much want to read it. I think it's going to be an interesting read, and I'm curious to see how it will all unfold.

9. Tiny Pretty Things by Sona Charaipotra
This is said to be a mix between Pretty Little Liars, and Black Swan. Now honestly, I'm not that big of a fan of PLL, and I have never actually seen Black Swan - however, it still sounds very interesting to me, and I'm excited to get to this sometime in the near future. Also, the sequel comes out this year (hopefully), so I kinda want to get in on this before that.

10. Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon
There has been so much hype about this book, and it's was also on my most anticipated releases of 2015. So why haven't I read it yet? Well, a reading-slump starting around August put a stopper on that. But I'm out of that slump, and I want to read this one very soon.

These are some of the books I didn't get to in 2015. Are there any of these you can recommend? Which 2015 releases did you want to get to, but haven't yet?


Let's Talk About | My 2016 Blogging and Bookish Resolutions

It’s a new year, and that means I have a couple of bookish, and blogging resolutions & goals, and I want to share them with you. Mostly for myself honestly, because then it’s out there, and I think I’ll feel more compelled to actually try and meet those goals then. Or at least, let’s hope so. I didn't want to pressure myself too much, so there aren't all that many goals for me to meet. But the few there are, I feel like I can accomplish in one way or another.

Blogging goals & resolutions

Post at least three times a week
I didn’t really blog anything for most of last year, and I want to change that. I’m not sure it’s going to happen right away, but I’m hopeful that it will change, and I will start posting more sometime this year. It may be a little overly ambitious for me, but you’re allowed to be that from time to time, right?

Post more reviews
I have a hard time writing reviews. I always feel like I somehow need to write an entire essay on my thoughts on the books I read, which isn’t necessary at all. I need to get used to the thought of writing reviews, even though they may not be that long, because I love sharing my opinions on the books I read.

Write the reviews after I’ve read the books
This is a goal that sort of goes with the one before. When I finally decide to actually write a review, I end up putting it off, multiple times, and all of a sudden, it’s been a month, and I remember nothing about the book. This year, I want to be better at writing my thoughts down as quickly as I can, after I finish a book.

Use twitter more
It's not directly blogging related, but it's near enough. I really like twitter, and I want to use it more. I think it's such a great way to connect to other bloggers, and even authors, which is why I want to start using my twitter account more. 

Bookish goals & resolutions

I’ve decided to not actually participate in any reading challenges this year. Well not officially at least. I do have the ‘Popsugar’ reading challenge printed out, but completing it is not really a priority of mine. Not at all really, but it's a fun little thing to look at from time to time. Also, it can be helpful when I don't know what to read. The only challenge I have really set myself this year is my goodreads goal. My goal this year is to read 75 books, and I think that I can manage that. Last year I read 61 books, but I was practically in a reading slump from August to December, so I think I can make it to 75 this year. 

I have a couple of other goals besides my goodreads one, and I think it's actually something I can manage. I didn't want to set too many, and too big goals, because I know that would just frustrate me more than it would help me. But I think I've come up with some good ones, and ones that I can actually keep this year.. (because last year they went to hell after the first month.. oops)

Read the books on my 16 in 2016 list
I didn't read all of the books I wanted to read in 2015. Therefore I have made a list of 16 books that are very high on my want to read list, and I feel like I need to get to this year. I'll do another post where I talk about those 16 books, and it'll probably be up in a day or two.

Read the books I get from the library
I use the library a lot, and I check out a lot of books at a time. That's a problem, because I can't read that many of them in a month. So, along with reading all the books I get from the library, I want to check out less books at a time.

Slow my roll on the book buying
Honestly, I don't buy books all that often, but then when I do buy them, I buy in bulk. Usually, they are ebooks, and as they are cheaper, I get a lot for not that much money. I mean, I love having so many books to choose from - but I can't keep track of all of them, and it's getting a little out of hand. So this year I want to try and slow down on my book buying a little. Just a little, because a complete 'book buying ban' would not work for me at all.

Try to step out of my comfort zone
Seriously though, I read a lot of contemporary - probably 90% of everything I read can be categorized as that. This year I really want to try and get out of that comfort zone a little bit, and perhaps delve into some fantasy, or even some science fiction.

So these are my blog & bookish resolutions for 2016. Do you have any reading resolutions/goals for the year?