Booktuber Interview- Julia Sapphire

Hey everyone! As promised, I am here with another interview :) This time with Julia Sapphire, who has an amazing Booktube channel. I highly recommend checking her channel out! 

Let’s get into the questions!

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First, can you introduce yourself and what you do on the internet?

Hello, my name is Julia Sapphire! I make bookish videos on YouTube and am apart of the BookTube community. I upload videos such as, reading wrap ups, hauls, tbr’s (to be read), Stephen King videos, book recommendations videos, etc. I have been making videos for over three years now and started at the age of thirteen, so you definitely see me grow up online a little bit haha.

Obviously, anyone who has checked out your channel knows you love Stephen King. Which book would you recommend for someone who has never read any of his works?

Haha, yes! This is a question I get asked quite a bit and always have trouble answering. I would say that Carrie is a great start for some, it is where I started myself! It is his debut novel and one of his shorter novels for sure. You can totally see him progress as a writer and a person as you continue reading his books. I also suggest Mr. Mercedes, more for people who don’t want to jump into straight-up horror. It is more of a mystery-suspense book and follows a detective! It is blunt and intense but its not considered “horror” so take that as you will :)

Have you been to any bookish events in the past and do you plan on going to any this year?

I have been to book signings, four in the past! I have been to one with Kendare Blake and Lauren Oliver, another with Angie Thomas, Julie Murphy and Becky Albertilli, as well as a Sarah J. Maas signing! Not long ago I also attended the book signing for Zenith by Sasha Alsberg and Lindsay Cummings. I do plan on attending Bookcon this June and am super excited but kind of nervous haha.

What are your plans and goals for your channel for 2018?

Ouu I love planning so I did make some channel goals for 2018. *whispers* I kinda sorta have a video on it if you’re interested… ;) My main goals though are to reach 10k subscribers (which I have surpassed!) and really take my viewers feedback and requests to improve my channel more in 2018!

What are your top 3 favorite King books?

Oh gosh!! I get asked this probably daily and typically refuse to answer lol. I will say some of my favourites but I cannot choose an order!! The Shining, Mr Mercedes, Misery, IT and Rose Madder are all great reads! Salems’ Lot is excellent as well!

If you could live in any book world, which would you pick and why?

I am going to go with a classic YA series and say the Shadowhunter world from Cassandra Clare’s books! It is more urban fantasy so it is set in our world but I would love to be apart of the life Jace and everyone is from. It would be super cool to be a Shadowhunter or a vampire or even a warlock! It is probably a typically answer but those books have made quite the impact on my reading and my life in general!

How did you get into reading?

I got into reading when I read Carrie actually! I was researching popular horror films when I was around ten years old and saw Carrie, so I decided to check out the book! I read it in like a day which at the time has never happened! See I did not grow up with Harry Potter or Percy Jackson, I read Goosebumps, the Spiderwick Chronicles and Judy Blum when I was younger. Carrie did really spark my love for his books and for books in general! What got me into YA fiction was the Visions trilogy by  Lisa Mcmann. It was one of the first book series that I adored, I could relate to the main character and loved the boy in the book haha.

I know you live in Canada, so have you ever been to the US and if so, where?

Yes, I am from Canada! I have not been to the US much at all… I have been to Buffalo which is right outside the Niagara Falls border in Canada just to shop for a day, that’s about it though!

What do you see yourself pursuing as a future career? Do you think it would be related to books?

I see myself doing psychology or criminology in the future. I have wanted to pursue this as a career for many years now and books have helped give me new perspectives and increased my interest in these areas. I have thought about working in publishing, it would obviously be something I am passionate about. As for writing, people think that because I read my goal is to become a writer which has not really been the case… mind you I am sixteen so this could change haha! I could see myself writing poetry though.

Finally, what advice would you give someone who wants to start a booktube channel?

I love this question! I think you just have to do it, put your fit in the door kind of thing. It can be scary putting yourself online but it is so much fun and you can really learn things about yourself and grow as a person. Try not to think about subscribers or making money right off the bat. Its just not how it works and people can tell if you are not genuine. I would say have fun, interact in the community and to always share your honest thoughts on a book during a review!!
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Thank you so much to Julia for doing this interview! It was a lot of fun :) Once again, make sure to go check out her channel! If you would like me to do more interviews like this one, please leave a comment down below.
Xo, Jessica
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on book buying bans // discussion

As of right now, I own exactly 60 physical books, e-books, and audiobooks that I HAVE NOT yet read. That is insane.

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In the past, I have tried to go on book buying bans because I just can’t keep up with my TBR. Plus, I spend way too much money every month on books, and I have no room for them anymore. I have three shelves for my TBR, and more than 1/2 of the kindle books I own are unread. I am usually very unsuccessful with my bans though, and I barely make it past three weeks.

I think the reason they never work for me is 1. because I have no self control and 2. there are constantly new books being released and I need them all. Plus, after my “ban,” I just end up buying books in bulk. I guess this is the same as dieting. When you go on a diet, you deprive yourself of certain foods and once you get off the diet, you binge those snacks you avoided.

I just can’t help myself. I am a book collector, and buying books is my therapy. It makes me happy to add books to my shelves, even if many of them end up unread for long periods of time.

BUT, I have finally decided to go on a real ban. I won’t buy anymore books until I read at least 25 of the books on my owned TBR. I also won’t be requesting any Netgalley books until I finish reviewing all of the books I currently have.

I don’t know how well this will work, but I am giving it a try. This is going to be extremely hard. I am going into this with high hopes though.

If I am successful, then this ban should last a few months because I am a slow reader and it will take at least 3-4 months to read 25 books for me.

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Have you been on a book buying ban before? How did you do?

Wish me luck with this ban!

Xo, Jess

HUGE Book Outlet haul!

I haven’t done a book haul in almost a year, which is insane. I have purchased so many new books since then, but I never talk about them. I recently placed a really big order on Book Outlet, so I decided I would share the books I bought on there.

I clearly have a book buying problem, so I will be doing a post all about book buying bans in the next week or so. I just can’t resist! Plus, over 1/2 of the books I bought were only like $1, which made my wallet happy.

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The Books:
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  • Dreamology by Lucy Keating:
    • I have been eyeing this book for months at every bookstore I went to. I Just couldn’t get myself to purchase it until now. I am so excited to read it.
  • Wanderlost by Jen Malone:
    • I have seen this on Book Outlet many times but never decided to purchase it. It went in and out of my cart for a while, so I decided it was finally time to just buy it.
  • By Your Side by Kasie West:
    • I am sure that you’ve heard of this book before. So many people have talked about it, so when I saw that Book Outlet had it, I needed it.
  • Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver:
    • My friend read this book and recommended it to me. I am not a fan of this cover, but it was the only edition they had.
  • Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen:
    • Confession: I have never read anything by Sarah Dessen. I feel like her books are a YA contemporary staple, so I wanted to read at least one.
  • Roomies by Sara Zarr:
    • I was browsing through the sale books on Book Outlet because I was about a dollar or two short of free shipping, so I put this book in last minute.
  • Drowning Is Inevitable by Shalanda Stanley:
    • I read the synopsis for this book and it seems really interesting. I don’t know too much about it though.
  • Broken Hearts, Fences, and Other Things to Mend by Katie Finn:
    • This book got a lot of hype a while ago, but I never got around to reading it. Hopefully I get to it soon.
  • Afterparty by Ann Redisch Stampler:
    • I saw a thread on Twitter of really good Book Outlet books that are on sale, and this was one of them. I decided to give it a go!
  • The Death Of Us by Alice Kuipers:
    • This book was only $0.99 so of course I knew I should get it. The synopsis is really vague, but it was interesting enough to add it to my cart!
  • The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson:
    • This is my first and only Morgan Matson book! I can not wait to read this because everyone constantly raves about her.
  • The House by Christina Lauren:
    • This book is a paranormal thriller I believe, and I am all for ghost stories. I haven’t read a good one in a long time, so I really hope I enjoy this one.
  • Alex, Approximately by Jen Bennet:
    • I saw a booktuber I love talking about Jen Bennet and I decided I wanted to give one of her books a try. I also received an e-ARC of her latest release (review coming soon), so I wanted to own a physical copy.

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I hope you guys enjoyed this post! Let me know what you think. Should I do haul posts more often? Would you guys be interested in seasonal book hauls?

Also, leave a comment down below if you have read any of these books, and let me know what you thought of them!

xo, Jess

interview with booktuber- Kat

You might not remember this, but I used to do a series of interviews on my blog with different poets, youtubers, authors, etc. It has been MONTHS since my last one. BUT, I have decided to restart the series, and I have an amazing interview for you guys today that I am so excited for :)

Meet Kat, or paperbackdreams. She is super sweet and I absolutely love her videos! Please check her channel out. Now, let’s get into the interview!

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First, can you introduce yourself to everyone?

My name’s Kat. I’m 18, and I’m a Booktuber/Bookstagrammer/General Bookish Internet User.

Why did you decide to start a Youtube channel (and specifically Booktube)?

Youtube came to me sometime in middle school when I discovered Danisnotonfire and AmazingPhil. They were the start of my internet obsession along with the desire to start a channel of my own, but I didn’t know what kind of videos were right for me to make. I spent my time watching really popular YouTubers for years until the last half of 2013 when I randomly decided to type “bookshelf tour” into the search bar (completely sure that such a thing didn’t exist) and found one of the super popular booktubers. This spurred me on to discover the entirety of the community, and I just spent all the years between my discovery and my first video working up the courage to sit in front of my camera and film.

What are your favorite genres to read?

I am currently trying to branch out my genre reading and have recently discovered my love for thriller and suspense novels. I also love YA fantasy, paranormal, and darker contemporaries.

How has Booktube impacted your life?

This is a pretty average answer, but Booktube has helped me realize that my avid reading is not as strange as I once thought was. It’s allowed me to meet some really cool people who have just as much to say about books and fandoms as I do. Also, I’ve learned a ton about reviewing books and writing!

Where do you see yourself in the next 3 years?

I’m not exactly sure. Probably a tired college student who will have hopefully decided what I want to major in and where I want to go in life. Maybe. And I better still be reading as much as I do now or else my future self better watch her back.

Have you always been an avid reader or did this interest just begin recently?

I’ve been reading for pretty much as long as I can remember. My parents read to me when I was young, and my sister also loves to read, so I grew up around books, and from the point that I learned to comprehend words on my own I would just read and reread books constantly.

What is your favorite book of 2018 thus far?

It’s currently a tie between Beneath the Sugar Sky by Seanan McGuire and The Apocalypse of Elena Mendoza by Shaun David Hutchinson.

What are some items on your bucket list for both 2018 and your life?

I have too many things on my bucket list that will probably never happen because I’m not super great at following through, but some of my book-related goals are to one day interview an author somehow and maybe write a thing one day. I don’t know what kind of thing, but a thing.

I know you have mentioned that We Are the Ants is your favorite book at the moment. I have just begun reading it myself recently and can understand the hype. What specifically made it a favorite of yours?

To put it very briefly, We Are the Ants surprised me. It’s got so many different storylines going on and all connecting back to this one boy. It’s a lot to take in in the story, but to me it was just about this kid who was kind of lost and hurt, and who didn’t know what to do, but needed to make a decision. All of his thoughts and emotions lined right up with a lot of what I felt/feel and his bitter sarcasm and pessimism was incredible to read because I felt like I was the one talking. It came to me at the perfect time and I know it’s a favorite because I’m not scared of it. There are other books that I’ve read, loved, and never touched again because I have a feeling that if I do I’ll probably find some way to criticize them, and while We Are the Ants is certainly not a perfect book, I am almost certain that if I were to read it again (which I plan to do) I would love it just as much as the first time.

Finally, what advice would you give to someone who is just starting a Booktube channel?

If you want to start a channel, just do it. Terrible advice, but it’s the truest thing I can say. You don’t have to make a big introduction video, or have a fancy camera and lights, or even know exactly what you want to say. I’ve found that if you just sit down in front of some kind of recording device and start talking about books you love (or maybe some books you don’t love) all the rest will follow.

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HUGE thank you to Kat for agreeing to do this interview. It was so fun reading all of her answers. Please be sure to check out her channel, and maybe even leave her a comment saying you came from my blog!

If there is anyone you would want me to interview next, let me know in the comments :) I already have the next one planned!

xo, Jess

 

how i annotate books

I write in my books.

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I think you all know that by now because I talk about it often. I think it is so important, especially as a book reviewer because it really allows you to connect with the novel. You can be critical while still following and enjoying the book. It also makes a book more unique and special. It’s like having a conversation with the characters. I know that in the future it will be so fun to look back on and read through the pages.

How I do it:

What I Use-

  1. black pen!!
  2. 4 highlighter colors
  3. post-it notes (diff sizes)
  4. post-it tabs

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The Process-

  • I use a black pen to write in the books
    • typically this involves little comments to respond to dialogue
    • I also write comments about problematic parts of books
    • Sometimes at the end of each chapter, I write little summaries or thoughts I had about them
  • The 4 highlighters are what I use to really get analytical
    • yellow- important scenes
    • pink- love/romance
    • green- favorite quotes
    • blue- things to mention in review
  • Post-it notes
    • I use the post-it notes when I have more to say than can fit on the page
    • sometimes I want to write a couple sentences down but there is no room so I write it on the post-it
    • I do not use these too often
  • Post-it tabs
    • These correspond to my highlighters
    • I put them in when I highlight a part so that I can easily flip to the different sections without skimming through each page

Here are some examples of pages in my books: (not all of the pictures follow my current system)

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That is basically it to how I annotate! I hope this post was helpful.

If you have any questions, please feel free to leave them down below. Do you annotate in your books? Let me know how!

xo, Jessica

the book blogger test

Hello everyone! I am here with a book tag today because I haven’t done one in a really long time. I wasn’t tagged to do this but it seemed like fun so I just couldn’t resist! I’m not sure who the original creator of this tag is, but I saw it over on Drizzle and Hurricane Books.

The Questions

Describe your perfect reading spot:

I would love to have a comfy seat in a corner of a room near a window. It would need lots of pillows and a big comfy blanket. Currently, I just read in my bed, but I would love to have a spot like this in the future.

Tell us 3 book confessions:

  1. I write in my books- Please don’t hate me!!
  2. I read multiple books at a time
  3. I get in reading slumps pretty often

When was the last time a book made you cry?

I believe it was Turtles All the Way Down by John Green. That book really touched me and I fell in love with it. The parts where Aza has thought spirals was really difficult to read and it made me so upset.

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How many books are on your bedside table?

Surprisingly, it is only 1 right now. It is usually 2 or 3, but I cleaned my room and moved some from there. The book is This Adventure Ends by Emma Mills.

What’s your favorite snack to eat while you read?

I rarely ever eat while reading, but I would have to go with pretzels or cheez-its. I prefer to have something to drink, like tea, lemonade, or hot chocolate.

Name 3 books you would recommend to everyone:

  1. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee- hands down my favorite book
  2. Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour- definitely recommend this
  3. Caraval by Stephanie Garber- it was a quick but amazing read

Show us a picture of your favorite bookshelf on your bookcase:

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This one is my favorite because I went with a blue theme for the shelf. It is one of my two TBR shelves so I haven’t read any of the books on it. I just really like how it looks.

Describe how much books mean to you in just 3 words:

Can’t live without.

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And that’s the end of the tag! I hope you enjoyed it :)

I’m going to tag a few people down below, but anyone can do this tag!

I tag…

xo, Jessica

Review: By a Charm and a Curse

I was sent an advanced copy of the book in order to review it for a blog tour.

I haven’t done a review in what feels like forever! I knew I wanted to participate in the blog tour of this book because the description is so interesting! Check it out below:

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Synopsis (Netgalley):

A kiss is never just a kiss.

Le Grand’s Carnival Fantastic isn’t like other traveling circuses. It’s bound by a charm, held together by a centuries-old curse, that protects its members from ever growing older or getting hurt. Emmaline King is drawn to the circus like a moth to a flame…and unwittingly recruited into its folds by a mysterious teen boy whose kiss is as cold as ice.

Forced to travel through Texas as the new Girl in the Box, Emmaline is completely trapped. Breaking the curse seems like her only chance at freedom, but with no curse, there’s no charm, either—dooming everyone who calls the Carnival Fantastic home. Including the boy she’s afraid she’s falling for.

Everything—including his life—could end with just one kiss.

After reading Caraval by Stephanie Garber last year, I have been dying to pick up another carnival-related book.

This one was the perfect choice.

The beginning is a little slow, but the pace picks up a few chapters in. The humor is a little different than what I am used to in my YA books, but I loved it a lot. The writing flows really well, almost like a poem. I really appreciated how easy to read it was. Often times in fantasy novels, I get confused by all the extravagant words, especially in the world-building. This was easy to follow along with.

The characters were also really relatable. I loved Emma a lot because of how sweet she was. Although she was in a tough position, she always strived to do what is right.

The romance was also done very well in this novel. It wasn’t too lovey-dovey or too heavy. The relationship didn’t take anything away from the plot, which I liked.

Overall, if you were a fan of Caraval or The Night Circus, I would highly recommend this book! The setting/world was just amazing, and the storyline was great. It was a really enjoyable read for me and I can’t wait to buy the finished physical copy.

rating: 4/5 stars

xo, Jessica

Contemporary-A-Thon TBR

I recently came across a video announcing the contemporary-a-thon and I immediately knew I wanted to participate. I am a huge contemporary fan, and this is a great way to get some more reading in. I will probably only get through 2, maybe 3 books but I want to try anyways.

The Hosts:
Pages and Pens
My Reading is Odd
Chelsea Dolling Reads

The challenges:

1. Read the most recent contemporary that you purchased/acquired

2. Read a contemporary book with pink on the cover

3. Read a hyped contemporary book

4. Read a diverse contemporary book

5. Read a dark/taboo contemporary

6. Read a contemporary(ish) graphic novel

7. Read a contemporary book that has been recommended to you

My TBR:

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True Believer- Nicholas Sparks (1&2)

I just purchased this about a week or two ago when I went to Barnes and Noble with my friend. We both picked up Nicholas Sparks books because neither of us have read any before. The cover of this one is more of a purple-ish color, but it is the closest to pink I have so I am counting it!

This Adventure Ends- Henry Holt (3)

I have heard nothing but great things about this book, so I am excited to finally get around to reading it. It was pretty hyped on Goodreads and Twitter, so I have high expectations going into it.

Also can we talk about the beautiful cover

My Heart and other Black Holes (4)

I believe this book deals with depression and anxiety, making it a diverse read. I am prepared for heartache because this does deal with some heavy topics. I accidentally read a spoiler for this book, so I know it will make me cry.

Trigger Warning: Suicide

The Summer I turned Pretty- Jenny Han (7)

This book was recommended to me such a long time ago but I only recently acquired it. I am so excited to read it because I love Jenny Han’s writing. I really hope I love it as much as I loved the To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before trilogy.


 

I know my TBR is pretty short, but with school everyday, I don’t have as much time to read as I would like. These books satisfy 5/7 of the challenges, so to me, that would be a success.

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Let me know if you are participating down in the comments below! I would love to hear what books you have on your TBR for this read-a-thon.

xo, jessica

10 bookish facts about me

Today’s post is one that I have been meaning to write for a very long time. I love reading posts like this because you learn a lot about the person who wrote it. I hope some of you can relate to these facts, and I’m not alone in them.

I write in my books

I love to annotate and make little comments in my books. It makes them more unique in my opinion, and it helps me remember the book better. Let me know if you want a post about how I annotate!

I have close to 50 books on my owned TBR pile

I clearly have a problem. I need to stop buying books because I own way too many that I haven’t read yet. I tried going on a ban but it just never works for me.

I love audiobooks a lot

I never used to listen to audiobooks until the summertime, and now I am obsessed. I’ve listened to about 10 so far, and I just discovered overdrive so I know I will be listening to more soon.

I am awful at sticking to monthly TBRs because I am a mood reader

I used to force myself to read the books I put on my monthly TBRs, but now I don’t even make lists anymore. I just pick up whatever book I am in the mood for next.

My favorite genres are mysteries/thrillers and contemporary YA

I have always loved crime movies and tv-shows, so naturally that carried over to my reading. I don’t read a lot of mysteries or thrillers, but I am slowly beginning to. Contemporaries have always been at the top of my list, just because I love relating to the characters.

I can’t eat while reading but I love to have tea or hot cocoa

If i eat while reading, it just becomes a mess. I can’t do both at the same time, and it messes up my flow. I prefer just having some tea with me.

I am not really a fan of fantasy

Please don’t hate me for this one. I know fantasy is huge in the book community, but I am just not that big on it. I read fantasy occasionally and I usually end up loving the book, but I don’t pick it up often.

I need to read to the end of the chapter, I can’t stop in the middle

I know I am not alone on this one. I really hate stopping a book in the middle of a chapter. I only do it if I really have to. I almost always read to the end of the chapter.

I’ve only been to two book signings

They were both so amazing. One was for Connor Franta’s first book- A Work in Progress. The second one was for Amanda Lovelace’s poetry collection, The Princess Saves Herself in This One. The experiences are unforgettable, and hopefully I will be able to attend more in the future.

I have read 5 books in 2018 so far

I am off to an okay start. I was hoping to to read 6-8 books, but I am still happy with the number. My reading goal for this year was set to 1 book, mostly because I want to focus on reading quality books, rather than looking at the quantity of books. So I have reached my goal already.

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What are some bookish facts about you? Let me know in the comments! If you’ve done a post like this before, link it below as well.

xo, Jessica

Poetry Collection #3

and everyday i took a different path,

but somehow

it always led me back

to you.


 

my hands were stained

with white, fluffy clouds,

the fresh, green grass,

and all the memories of you.

 


 

you were the storm

in my clear sunny day.

you were the tsunami

in my salty ocean waves.

yet i let you in

because you were also the air

that i so desperately needed to breathe again.

 

xo, jessica