Some Announcements!

HELLO THERE!

I haven’t had much time for writing lately, but I wanted to pop in with a real quick update & some announcements that I’m super excited about & hopefully bring some fun changes around here (and maybe a little more consistency!).

1. I’ve started a Booktube Channel!! 

I’m so excited to announce that I launched my Booktube channel over the weekend. This is something I’ve been wanting to do for a long time, but the perfectionist in me kept putting it off until I could have the perfect filming spot in my house, or better equipment, or excuse after excuse, and I’ve finally decided to just start & tweak things as I go! My first video is up and is the Booktube Newbie Tag, which is a great introduction to the kind of videos you’re going to see on my channel.

 

2. I’m starting a new job!!!

I’ve been offered a new position with a local company, which I’ll be starting on April 25th! I’m so excited for this change and all the opportunity it could bring, but that means that for the next couple weeks I’ll probably still be MIA around here. No worries, though! Once I settle into my new routines, I should have even MORE time to focus on writing and I can get back into posting some regular content here! I have so many things I want to talk about here, it’s just a matter of getting myself organized so I can dedicate time to all these things I love!

3. April Re-read-athon

I’m making April a re-read-athon month, since SO many great books are coming out in the beginning of May & I wanted to revisit each of these series before picking up the new installments. I’m actually going to be posting my Q1 wrap-up video either tonight or tomorrow, which will talk a little more about this 🙂

4. AdultBooklr April Read-alongs

Our theme for April is Page-to-Screen, and the people have voted to read Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children (luckily this fits into my re-read-athon!) and Sandman, vol. 1 for the AdultBooklr read-alongs this month! If you want to join us, all you need to do is pick up one or both of the books, and follow the tags #abperegrine and #absandman!

I’m really excited for everything that’s coming, please stick around & we’ll have lots of fun in May (cough cough *BOOKCON* cough cough)!!

Until Next Time ❤

Life Updates & Announcements

Oh. My. Gourd. You guys. These last couple months have been a total ride. I just wanted to pop in with a few major life updates & some proclamations, because dammit somebody needs to keep me accountable!

New Adventures

First of all, I’m so excited to announce that after nearly a year of contemplation, I have taken the plunge to become a Stella & Dot Independent Stylist! If you don’t know what Stella & Dot is, it is a direct-sales jewelry & accessories company with HELLA cute pieces that I seriously cannot get enough of.

I have been such a fan of every. single. collection Stella & Dot has put out over the last year, and I finally just swallowed my fear about direct sales & decided to go for it! It’s been about a week since I signed up, and I’m already so grateful that I didn’t let my hesitations hold me back (for once). This is going to be awesome. Seriously, look at these beauties!

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Now, you might think that this is going to drastically change the content of my blog? My intention is that it absolutely will not. I love blogging about my life, books, and fandoms. This will continue to be the place for that. Of course, my selfies will likely start featuring more jewelry than the absolutely zero I currently own – and I’m going to put up a banner to my website over in the sidebar – but the biggest change this is going to bring is an opportunity for fun jewelry giveaways! Can’t complain about that, right? RIGHT?

Anyway, most of my updates are going to be found on my Facebook page, which you should most certainly go & like, to keep up on things!

Speaking of Giveaways…

I’ve got a great giveaway coming your way in December! Just gotta get the post written up & published – hopefully you’ll be seeing that on the first! I’ll give you a hint. It’s something I was TRULY obsessed with this year & I am SO. EXCITED. to be giving it away!

TBR Pile

So, I’ve paced down since September, which I’m convinced was a total fluke with the number of books I read. Obviously, in October I only read 2 books. and so far this month I’ve only read HALF of ONE (and 2/3 of an audiobook). I’m hoping having some good time off from work for Thanksgiving next week helps me get back into a groove, because I really loved the feeling of accomplishment I had at the end of September! My end-of-2015 TBR goes as-follows:

November 

  • The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern (currently reading)
  • You’re Never Weird on the Internet by Felicia Day (currently listening)
  • Nimona
  • The Wrath & The Dawn by Renee Ahdieh
  • The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness
  • Sons of Thestian by ME Vaughan

——

December

  • Noughts & Crosses by Malorie Blackman
  • Bitch Planet vol. 1 by Kelly Sue DeConnick
  • Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover
  • Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
  • Uprooted by Naomi Novik
  • The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (re-read)
  • My True Love Gave to Me by Various

Realistically, I realize I’m definitely not going to read all of these by the end of the year. But it makes me feel good to be overly ambitious.

Book Club

If you have been keeping up, you may have noticed that we have kind of scaled down the hype around AdultBooklr over the last couple months. Lots of our members & admins went back to school & we just haven’t had the time to implement many of the features we’ve been wanting to try out. We’ll get there, though. It’s just going to take one really good planning pow-wow, and we’ll have a 2016 gameplan to knock your socks off! 🙂

Planning

Speaking of PLANNING, have you seen the limited edition 2016 Passion Planners? If you haven’t seen the Kickstarter campaign, you are seriously missing out. They are perfect & you can still get your hands on one through the end of this weekend! Just check out the Campaign & know that any money you spend with this company is going to be used to help people.

Super-DUPER Secret Project

Lastly, ba-ba-BAAAAA!! I want to announce that I’ve got a collaborative, super-secret project in the works. Unfortunately, I can’t say more than that right now, but there should be a sneak peek available for you by early January (fingers crossed) so STAY TUNED, lovers!

What have you all been up to lately? I’ve been so out of the blogging loop! Let’s touch base, please! 🙂

Until Next Time ❤

The Epic Summer Book Haul

Starting a book club was a bad idea.

I mean, it was a great idea & has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my entire life, but… it was also a BAD idea. For my bank account. Because books. I can’t stop buying books.

As I was taking these pictures the other day, I thought to myself, “you know, it doesn’t really seem like all that many, does it?”…and then I looked at my Kindle purchases. Ah. Yes. Therein lies the problem.

So, without further ado (and to avoid feeling the need to justify myself to the internet), I give you my summer book haul, June-August 2015.

Oooooh pretty 🙂

This is essentially my whole TBR pile right now. I honestly didn’t own many unread books before this whole book club thing…you guys are the worst best, if you’re reading this.

The breakdown:

*Note how I listed no reasons for purchasing the graphic novels? That’s because I don’t need a reason. I just want them ❤

You may recognize this photo from my Book Square Challenge post on Tumblr or Instagram. I figured why not kill 2 birds with one stone? These are the covers from the Enchanted Collection Box Set, which I purchased on Amazon Prime Day for like $17. It was basically the only good sale that day, I’m fairly certain.

And, of course, the illustrious Harry Potter box set. Basically my prized possession right now, if we’re being completely honest. Remember when I got this set for $40 over 4th of July weekend? *Happy sigh*

Now for the scary part…the e-books. I have even less restraint when it comes to Kindle deals, if you can believe it.

AND there you have it. A total of 59 books purchased or received as gifts since June 1. Not sure if I should be proud of that or ashamed of my lack of self control? Ah, well. I’ve got books to take my mind off of this terrible moral dilemma!

Back to the reading chair!

I’d love to hear your thoughts if you have read any of these books! I’ve only read a few of them, so far!

Til Next Time ❤

[Book Review] Anna & The French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

Anna is looking forward to her senior year in Atlanta, where she has a great job, a loyal best friend, and a crush on the verge of becoming more. Which is why she is less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris–until she meets Étienne St. Clair. Smart, charming, beautiful, Étienne has it all…including a serious girlfriend.

But in the City of Light, wishes have a way of coming true. Will a year of romantic near-misses end with their long-awaited French kiss?

I don’t quite know where to start with this review. I really loved Anna. She’s a LOT like me, which was a little freaky but also kind of annoying. Like, I don’t really want to read about myself all that much. The primary difference between myself and Anna, though, is the one thing that made me dislike her – her inability to communicate with other human beings. So, maybe I wish she were a little bit more like me? Who knows. I’m a conundrum.

Though this book is touted as a romance novel, it didn’t FEEL like a romance novel for the majority of the book. I still can’t decide if I think it is one or not. Obviously, the romantic relationship is the central focus of the story, but it didn’t play out in a way that was enjoyable (for me, at least), and I feel like the romance in a romance novel should be enjoyable to read. Personal opinion. You guys, I honestly fear I may be ready to move on from the angst & drama of YA, oh no!

With those two grievances out of the way, though, I did enjoy this book. I don’t want my review to come across like I didn’t. I read it pretty quickly – about 2 days – and never once was I bored or uninterested. I found all of the characters to have a unique perspective & each was interesting on his/her own, but when put together, the cast of this book is really great. The way the characters play off of each other & interact with one another feels very realistic, for high schoolers (or even undergrads).

In the long run, the majority of the plot here is driven by Anna’s inability to communicate with people – both in a literal and figurative sense. Literally, she doesn’t speak the language, which causes a few minor hiccups in her integration into boarding school life. The real problem, though, is that she is unwilling to take a chance & speak her mind and, as such, jumps to all the wrong conclusions about pretty much every person in her life. If this book taught me anything, it’s to say what I’m thinking, lest I sabotage my own chance at happiness.

I’m not necessarily put off by this method of plot development, but it is a very “YA” thing to do, and one I’m looking forward to putting behind me as I try to branch out from the genre.

Final word:

4 star

I struggled so much to write this review because I can’t really articulate how the book made me feel. From a technical perspective, it is nothing spectacular and I have clearly made a point to air my grievances, but Stephanie Perkins has a way with characters that makes them come alive & really helps you connect to the story. For that reason, this book gets more stars than my review would lead you to believe. Haha.

I hope any of this made sense to you. I’ll be accepting questions to clarify my jumbled mess of a thought pattern. I promise.

Until Next Time ❤

Break Time – I’ll Be Back (you totally just read that like Arnold, didn’t you?)

Announcement! I’m taking a hiatus – just for this week – to finish getting things set up with AdultBooklr! We’ve got all kinds of things planned & I need to get my butt out of our 24/7 chat so I can actually get stuff done for all our wonderful members.

In case you missed it last week, AdultBooklr is a Goodreads/Tumblr crossover community founded by yours truly on the hallowed date of June 11, 2015. The only requirements for membership are that A) You are over 18; B) You love books; and C) You have a tumblr account. That’s it! If you meet these qualifications, come check out what I feel is the greatest place on the internet.

Not convinced? Let me tell you more.

Oh yeah, and books. Lots & lots of books.

Hope you’ll come hang out with us! I’ll be back next week for your regularly scheduled programming. ❤

New Developments! Goodreads Group for Tumblr Users 18+!

Hey out there! So I’ve had an incredible last 24 hours. Isn’t it amazing how quickly certain aspects of your life can change? I’m really excited about this new development in my internet life and wanted to share it with YOU, sweet reader.

So it all started yesterday (remember how I said I was making new friends on Tumblr?) when I realized that the majority of book blogs I follow were run by persons aged 13-17. Obviously, there is absolutely nothing wrong with this, but I was feeling like I needed some interaction with people who had shared similar life experiences with me. So, I made a post. And in 24 hours, that post has gotten over 1,500 notes. I discovered that I was not alone in these feelings.

Discussions began about hypothetical meetups of all the “adult” booklr users and I thought, “why not? why couldn’t we all congregate somewhere other than Tumblr?” So I made a group. And I posted about it. And you know what? We have nearly 150 members in less than 24 hours.  It may not seem like a huge deal to you, I don’t really know. But to me – this is magical. A group of adults who love books & love to talk about books and are willing to participate in activities. It’s really freaking cool.  And I’m completely flabbergasted that it all stemmed from one little post. So flabbergasted, in fact, that my writing quality has seriously deteriorated for this post (apologies).

All this to say: if you are over 18 & have a Tumblr blog and a Goodreads account, you should join us. We’re having the best time talking about books, comics, sharing our own writing, and just general randomness. Click the widget below to join!

“Adult” Booklr – We have wine & forts & kittens!

"Adult" Booklr 146 members

So, we decided it would be great to get to know each other better after the “Epic Adult-Booklr Train”…Come join us!

View this group on Goodreads »

Share book reviews and ratings with “Adult” Booklr, and even join a book club on Goodreads.

[Book Review] Heir of Fire (Throne of Glass #3)

I did it. I finished Heir of Fire. I have a lot of thoughts here, so I’m going to try & organize them as best I can. I’ve tried my best to avoid spoilers for the other 2 books in the series, but if you haven’t read those & don’t want to risk it, I suggest you go back to one of my earlier reviews: [Throne of Glass] or [Crown of Midnight]!

Celaena Sardothien has survived deadly contests and shattering heartbreak—but at an unspeakable cost. Now she must travel to a new land to confront her darkest truth…a truth about her heritage that could change her life—and her future—forever.

Meanwhile, brutal and monstrous forces are gathering on the horizon, intent on enslaving her world. To defeat them, Celaena must find the strength to not only fight her inner demons but to battle the evil that is about to be unleashed.

First of all, this book took me a LONG time to read (I guess some people don’t consider 3 weeks that long for a book, but I definitely do). I just couldn’t binge-read it the way I did with the first two books. Now, this could easily be attributed to book burnout after the aforementioned binge sessions, OR it could be because the storytelling in this book changed so significantly & felt really disjointed compared to the rest of the series. My guess is it was the latter, but the whole burnout thing is maybe a contributing factor.

The thing about this book compared to the first two is that we’re following multiple concurrent story lines. This I have no problem with – I mean,  our favorite characters get separated & we start following each of them independently – duh. There was just something about the way it was executed in this book that felt…choppy? Every time I started getting invested in one of the story lines, the narrative would switch over to a different one & I’d lose my momentum. And then put the book down and not feel that burning desire to pick it back up.

The book is divided into two “Parts”, which are directly related to a decision Celaena has to make. I’ll say that Part 2 was MUCH more consistent than Part 1 & only took me a few days to read. Once I hit the 70% mark in the book, I got that fire back for the series. It was just one of those instances where the book in the middle of the series is spending so much time building up to what’s to come that nothing REALLY happens. Except for that one thing that happens in the last 100 pages. Because Damn. That HAPPENED.

Celaena’s character development is basically stunted for the first 2/3 of the book. She’s her same stubborn self, still reeling from the events of Crown of Midnight.  It takes a long time for her to start climbing out of the abyss of despair she was dropped in, but once she takes that first step, things really start to pick up.

We’re also introduced to quite a few new characters – dare I say too many? I think maybe. Perhaps not too many for the entire book, but too many in close succession, for sure. Things got kind of chaotic for a little bit during Part 1 & it was hard to keep track of the pieces that were flying in every direction and in no way coming together.

All-in-all, I did really love this book once I had finished it. I gave it 4/5 stars on Goodreads because I think it’s setting us up for something absolutely, undeniably epic in the next two installments. It just suffered a little bit from what I call “The Two Towers” syndrome – where the middle of the story is just the middle of the story & has no beginning or end of its own. Can’t fault a series book for that, but it does make it EXTRA frustrating to have to wait around for the next installment!

4 star

Have you finished Heir of Fire? What did you think?! I need to know! I need someone to talk about this book with, please tell me!

Until Next Time ❤

[5] Obsessive Wednesdays: Music Madness!

Welcome back to Obsessive Wednesdays! This week is a little music-heavy (and, consequently, Youtube-heavy). Likely due to the Cincinnati road trip a couple weeks ago 🙂 Kristi & I discovered LOTS of new faves. I’m just gonna share a couple, though. Let’s not get crazy.

MUSIC

New Miley! (Nightmare)

Guys, this song leaked on the internet yesterday & I’m in love. I actually really love the majority of Miley’s music since “We Can’t Stop” came out. And I’m not ashamed to admit that. Sure, her antics have been INCREDIBLY eyeroll-worthy. But I can forgive that. She’s making huge strides with her charity, which I greatly admire. She really does have a heart of gold. And this song is LE-GIT.

1989 Mashup / Sam Tsui & Kurt Schneider

This is maybe my favorite mashup/remake/cover/whatever that I’ve ever found on YouTube. I just can’t. I can. Not. It’s so good.

Also, check out Sam Tsui’s Sam Smith/Ed Sheeran mashup, because it’s a close contender.

Anna Kendrick’s/ John Krasinski Lip Sync Battle

This is maybe old news to some of you, but I just got around to watching it last week and HOLY SHIT. Anna Kendrick is a freaking goddess. It takes a LOT of courage to take on J-Lo and she totally kills it. Even with her little white girl booty. Just more proof that any booty can be a great booty.

Last-minute entry! Happy Playlist!

 

I dare you to be in a bad mood while this playlist is running. I DARE YOU. (playlist by @loudlysilent)

YOUTUBE

Carmilla

 

Moving along from music, bookavid was a terrible human being & made me start watching the web series, Carmilla, about a quirky girl whose roommate disappears & is replaced by a vampire. The cast is just phenomenal, and I blew through the first season in a couple days. The majority of characters in this series are gay, but it’s never really “addressed”, which I found fucking refreshing. Nobody needed to quantify their affections for whoever they were into. Everything was just accepted as normal. This is the way the world should work. Woah. That might have been a borderline rant. My bad.

BOOKS

P.S. I Still Love You / Jenny Han

I finally picked this up from the library & cannot wait to dive in. I need to finish Heir of Fire first, but I’m getting close, so YAY! I really, really enjoyed (review) To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before, and I am super excited to read the ongoing adventures of the Song Sisters! Also super excited to do a joint review of the book with @loudlysilent for The Wind-Up Books Chronicle this month!

Stephanie Perkins Novels

I also picked up the 3 Stephanie Perkins novels – Anna & The French Kiss, Lola & The Boy Next Door, and Isla & The Happily Ever After – from my library. I’ve definitely gotten the tiniest burnt out on fantasy lately, so I’m really glad to have these contemporaries (with INCREDIBLE reviews) at the ready for me!

A Court of Thorns & Roses

When I’m ready again for more fantasy, I’ve got this beauty at the ready!! I know I should probably move on to another author, but I’ve heard such INCREDIBLE things about this book that I just don’t see the point! Sarah J Maas does fantasy like nobody I’ve ever read, and I am a FAN.

BEAUTY

Urban Decay Naked Smoky Palette

Everybody & their mother is pooping their pants over this. And with good reason. Urban Decay’s Naked Smoky palette is set to be released next month, and people. are. excited. Just look at the gorgeous packaging & the perfection that is every single shade of shadow! I don’t have any UD palettes in my arsenal, but this seems like a good one to get for me. When Kristi & I were sharing makeup, I always reached for her UD palettes before my own, so I know I’ll get good use out of it! These are TOTALLY worth the price tag.

HOME

Julia Goodwin’s San Francisco Home

Holy crap, you guys. This is like my dream interior. Every single photo in this home tour has me slobbering all over my keyboard. Seriously. I had to restrain myself from posting ALL of the photos right here. Every. Single. One is gorgeous & I have so much inspiration for my own spaces now!

Speaking of my spaces…

My New Bookshelves!

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Last but certainly not least – I have bookshelves now! Apologies for the crappy-lighting photo. My bedroom needs some serious work. If you follow me on Instagram or Tumblr, you may have seen that these suckers are getting lots of love from me. They’re a little sparse because my book collection is just getting underway. Having these right next to my bed has been AMAZING this week. They’re the perfect nightstand. I’ll do a whole bedroom tour once my room is no longer an embarrassment. K? Thanks.

I think that’s long enough for today. Let me know in the comments if there’s something YOU’RE completely obsessing over right now? Maybe it’s the new Mockingjay trailer? Or an announcement that something you love is being brought to screen (Lumberjanes, anyone?). I want to know!

Until Next Time ❤

Top Ten Tuesday: Most Anticipated Releases Remaining in 2015

T3

Woo! So I was going to do something a little different today, but it’s going to take more time than I had anticipated to put it together. Hopefully it turns out well & becomes a regular feature I can do here. Ooooh surprises! I hope to have it done by next week for y’all 🙂

Today’s Top Ten Tuesday prompt is Most Anticipated Releases For The Rest of 2015 – and boy, do I have a few of THOSE suckers. A few of them have come up in my Waiting on Wednesday posts, but most of the ones I’d posted for that have already been released this year (YAY!) so there are quite a few new ones on this list!

1. Queen of Shadows / Sarah J Maas

2. Library of Souls / Ransom Riggs

3. The Rest of Us Just Live Here / Patrick Ness

4. Armada / Ernest Cline

5. Lair of Dreams / Libba Bray

6. Carry On / Rainbow Rowell

7. The Stars Never Rise / Rachel Vincent (released today: COUNTS!)

8. The Trouble With Destiny / Lauren Morrill

9. Ink and Bone / Rachel Caine

10. Soundless / Richelle Mead

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly link-up hosted by The Broke & The Bookish
Until Next Time ❤

The Dragon’s Loyalty Award [Tag]

One of my favorite people on the internet, Like Gwen Stacy, nominated me for a Dragon’s Loyalty Award this weekend!

Similar to the Liebster Award and Creative Blogger Award, Dragon’s Loyalty is a way to link up bloggers and is an award for frequent visitors, fans and friends!
The rules are as follows:
  1. Visit and thank the blogger who nominated you.
  2. Acknowledge that blogger on your blog and a link back.
  3. You must share  7  things other bloggers may not know about you.
  4. Nominate up to  15  bloggers for Dragon’s Loyalty Award, provide a link to their blogs in your post, and notify them on their blogs.
  5. Copy and paste the award somewhere on your blog.
Seven Things About Me:
  1. I wasn’t much of a reader until the beginning of 2014, with the exception of the big ones: Twilight, Harry Potter, Hunger Games. It was The Selection series that kind of ignited this passion that has since spiraled into a full-on obsession with the written word.
  2. I met my now-husband my senior year of high school, when I asked him to prom & he turned me down! It’s a long – yet hilarious – story. We didn’t start dating until almost 5 years later.
  3. I spent 3 years working in a video rental store, which was easily the greatest job I’ve ever had. If they could pay me what I make now, I’d go back there in a heartbeat.
  4. One of my favorite guilty-pleasure movies is a little-known gem titled, Spectacular!, which is essentially Nickelodeon’s attempt at a High School Musical movie. It’s about Show Choir & stars Nolan Gerard Funk, who you may remember from a few episodes of Awkward or Glee.
  5. Oh, right – I was in Show Choir from 6th grade through Senior year in high school. No, it’s nothing like Glee. But it was still an awesome experience. I only performed one year, but I did stage crew all the other years. Because…
  6. I’m a TERRIBLE dancer.
  7. I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up.
My nominations!
  1. Anna @ Nerdy Alerty
  2. Liz @ Nerd In The City
  3. Cat @ Cat’s Shelf
  4. Caitlin & Leah @ How to Fangirl
  5. Cayt @ Vicarious Caytastrophe

As always, only participate in this tag if you WANT to. I like to spread the love about my favorite blogs, so there you have it! 🙂

Until Next Time ❤