end of the year book tag

*featured image from google, not my own*

I can’t believe that in two months, it will be the start of 2018. That’s insane! I feel like 2017 just started, even though a lot has changed in my life since last January.

Reading wise, I have read a total of 60 books so far (meaning I surpassed my goal). I finished the hardest year of high school in June and started my senior year of high school this past September. Although 2017 was a year of growth for me as a person, 2018 will be a year of great change that I am really looking forward to!

Let’s get into this tag now, that was originally created by Ariel Bissett on Youtube!

Are there any books you started this year that you need to finish?

I am currently reading The Beginning of Everything by Robyn Schneider, On Writing by Stephen King, and Eighteen Years by Madisen Kuhn. Those are the only books that I started and have yet to finish, and all other books I started this year I either finished or I DNF’d and don’t plan on finishing. I can’t start a book without finishing it, with the exception of two DNFs this year.

Do you have an autumnal book to transition into the end of the year?

The books I have been reading recently really aren’t autumnal but I do plan on re-reading To Kill A Mockingbird soon which kind of gives me darker vibes because it does deal with some heavier issues.

31563982.jpg

Is there a new release you’re still waiting for?

Many of the new releases I was excited for have already come out, and I am trying to start a book buying ban so I won’t be starting anymore new releases for a while. I have heard good things about Whichwood by Tahereh Mafi, which comes out this month, but I need to read Furthermore first.

What are three books you want to read before the end of the year?

Besides the books I am currently reading, I still want to read We Are The Ants, 1984, and Looking for Alaska. Hopefully I will actually get to those, but my TBR list keeps growing and it can get a bit overwhelming. Plus, I have so many unread books sitting on my shelf, so the mood I’m in really depends on which book I choose to read next.

23677341

Is there a book you think could still shock you and become your favorite book of the year?

We Are The Ants has a lot of potential if I get to it, because I have heard many amazing reviews on it. I have high hopes for it.

Have you already started making reading plans for 2018?

Sort of. I have already decided that my goal will be 60 books, which is only 10 more than this years goal. I don’t want to be too ambitious since I will be transitioning into college and I am working a lot more now.

xx, Jess

Advertisements

Turtles All The Way Down- Review

As you may have heard, John Green’s new book, Turtles All The Way Down, came out on October 10th. I was extremely excited to read it, because I have loved previous books by him.

I purchased the audiobook and began listening to that a few days after the release. Before I could even get 1/4 of the way through, I knew I had to own the physical copy. On Tuesday, I bought a signed edition from Target, and having it in my hands made me feel so much closer to it. I could actually see the words he had written, and it made the whole experience even better for me.

Goodreads synopsis:
Sixteen-year-old Aza never intended to pursue the mystery of fugitive billionaire Russell Pickett, but there’s a hundred-thousand-dollar reward at stake and her Best and Most Fearless Friend, Daisy, is eager to investigate. So together, they navigate the short distance and broad divides that separate them from Russell Pickett’s son, Davis.

Aza is trying. She is trying to be a good daughter, a good friend, a good student, and maybe even a good detective, while also living within the ever-tightening spiral of her own thoughts. 

In his long-awaited return, John Green, the acclaimed, award-winning author of Looking for Alaska and The Fault in Our Stars, shares Aza’s story with shattering, unflinching clarity in this brilliant novel of love, resilience, and the power of lifelong friendship.

My review:

I immediately fell in love with this book. This was the first book that I truly felt connected to the main character of a novel. I could relate to so many of the thoughts she had and it helped me make sense of my mind. The way John phrased Aza’s anxiety is the best description I have read. It really coincided with my own anxiety, and I could not be more grateful for this novel.

It really focuses on the struggles of everyday life of what it is like to live inside your own head. I feel like I can give this book to someone if I ever had to explain my anxiety to them. For me personally, it is extremely difficult to put my anxiety into words because I can not fully understand it half of the time. But when I read these words, it was as if every thought I had was written out for me.

Not only does she struggle with anxiety, but she also has obsessive thoughts which I can relate to as well. The combination of OCD and anxiety is extremely difficult and draining. You can feel how tired Aza is from suffering from this.

I had tears in my eyes while reading this book.

It was poetic and thought provoking and absolutely everything I needed to read, especially right now.

I think I may have found my new favorite YA book.

Rating: 5/5 stars

xx, jessica

books that changed my life

Over the years, I have read many books on so many different topics. A few of them even changed my views on the world completely.

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee:

This was one of the few books that I had to read in school and actually enjoyed. In fact, I loved it. It is now my all time favorite book ever (except I still don’t own it so I need to go buy it very, very soon). It deals with topics such as race, social norms, and maturity. It definitely is a must read for everyone.

Every Last Word by Tamara Ireland Stone:

This is my second favorite book of all time. I enjoyed it so much because I could relate to it on a really deep level. The main character suffers from OCD and she also enjoys writing. Since I could connect to it, it left such a deep impact on me. I plan on re-reading this book as soon as I catch up on my TBR pile. The ending left such a deep scar on me emotionally, and it really shocked me.

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins:

I am almost positive that all of you have read this book, watched the movies, or at least heard of it. The reason I like it so much is because I read it in a time of my life where I wasn’t very interested in anything. I was very sad, I didn’t focus on school, and I disconnected myself from a lot of people. When I heard about this book, I was so excited to read it and I couldn’t stop talking about it for days. I even convinced my cousin and friends to read it. It was something that I focused my time with and fell in love with, after a long time of being stuck in a weird place.

Everything Leads To You by Nina LaCour:

This book didn’t necessarily change my life, but it did change my perspective. I gained a new respect for the film industry, and I enjoyed learning about the different fields in film making. A couple of years ago, film was something that I was really interested in, and this book made me regain that initial love. I raved about this book for weeks after reading it because I loved it so much.

ending

signed book collection

Over the years, I have acquired a decent amount of signed books, and I thought I would share them with you guys! I am also working on making my site a lot better, in terms of graphics and design! Let me know what you think of everything 🙂

IMG_6322

  1. The Universe of Us- Lang Leav: I was at Barnes and Noble one day and decided I wanted to finally buy something by Lang. The first book I grabbed happened to be the Universe of Us and it was signed! It seemed like fate.
  2. Temporary Storms- McKayla Debonis: I received this book from the author, and again, it is a poetry collection!
  3. Losing Hope- Colleen Hoover: I actually have about 3 or 4 books by Colleen Hoover signed because I won them all in a giveaway. However, a couple of them are personalized to the previous owner, so they say to Ashley. But, it is still cool to own because I love Colleen’s books!
  4. Bright Souls Empty Minds- Jennae Cecelia: I have a lot of signed poetry collections, mostly because i received them from authors. This one is obviously another one of them. I absolutely loved this book and Jennae is so sweet!
  5. A Work In Progress – Connor Franta: I was able to attend Connor’s book signing a few years back, so that is how I got this one signed! It is actually the first singed book I own.
  6. Can’t Buy Forever- Susan Laffoon: This is a book I got from the author, but I actually ended up DNF’ing it. I’m really thankful that I was able to receive it, but it just wasn’t for me.
  7. The Princess Saves Herself in This One- Amanda Lovelace: I saved the best for last. I attended one of Amanda’s first book signings about 6 months ago (I think) for the release of her traditionally published poetry collection. I was able to bring my previous copy (self published version) and buy the new one! I got both signed.

 

I am so happy that I own a few signed books. I know they can be hard to find or expensive, and not everyone has them. I cherish all the books I own, but these have a special place in my heart.

chat with me

Do you have any signed books? Which ones? Also, I want to do a Q&A when I hit 400 followers, so feel free to ask me questions down below!

ending

august wrap up + september tbr

Before I start, I just want to say I made a Twitter account for my blog! You can check it out here 🙂

Unfortunately the past few months have been pretty bad for me, reading wise. I’m sad that I haven’t read as much as I hoped to over the summer, but I’m only one book away from completing my reading challenge (of 50 books)!

This month I read 5 books, which isn’t horrible.

Anna and The French Kiss- Stephanie Perkins:
People have been raving about this book for YEARS. I have been wanting to read it for the longest time ever. I finally did but I didn’t enjoy it as much as I hoped. I don’t even want to continue with the next 2 books, actually.

While this was definitely a super fluffy read, I wish I had related to and fallen in love with the characters. I think this was a little too fluffy for me, and I just haven’t been in the mood for fluffy.

3/5 stars

The Five People You Meet in Heaven- Mitch Albom:
I have heard lots of good things about this book, and when I saw that it was at Barnes and Noble for only $5, I had to get it. This book really got me thinking, and it was an incredible read.

I still find myself thinking about it and talking about it to others. The main character was really interesting for me to read about, and hearing about his life in such a unique way is what made me hooked.

5/5 stars

History is All You Left Me- Adam Silvera:
I was extremely lucky to be sent the ARC of this book by _____ on Twitter, and when I got it in my hands, I read it immediately. However, I wasn’t the biggest fan of this one. I couldn’t relate to the characters at all, and I found it a bit too slow for me. I realized in the last few months that I prefer characters over plot, but I still need some action in books. There just wasn’t enough in this one.

3/5 stars

Jane Eyre- Charlotte Bronte:
This book is part of my summer reading for school next year, which may be the reason that I didn’t love it too much.

At first, I really did think I would love the story because Jane seemed like a strong, independent woman and I really admired her for that. However, towards the end I really did not support her decisions and I couldn’t get myself to enjoy the story.

3/5 stars

Weave A Murderous Web- Anne Rothman-Hicks & Ken Hicks:
I wrote a review for this book a little while back so you can check that out!

3/5 stars

Now let’s get to my September TBR!

Midnight’s Children- Salman Rushdie:
Second book of my summer reading. I am almost done with it and expect to be done in a couple of days.

The Hate U Give- Angie Thomas:
I am almost done with this book. I am actually listening to it on Audible (it’s my first audiobook ever- and I love it). It is soo good.

Everything You Want Me To Be- Mindy Mejia:
I received this book in my Read Dog book subscription box and I am finally planning on reading it! It looks super interesting.

 

That is all for my TBR because I am starting my senior year of High School in a few days. I don’t want to overwhelm myself with too many books! What’s on your TBR for this month?

 

the guilty reader tag

Recently I have seen tons of Youtube Videos doing this tag and I definitely wanted to give it a shot. The answers are so funny and interesting to see! Let’s get to the questions 🙂

Have you ever re-gifted a book that you’ve been given?
I don’t think I ever have. I honestly don’t really ask for books specifically for my birthday or Christmas, so I don’t receive that many. I usually just get gift cards to Barnes and Noble, so it is books I actually want.

Have you ever said you’ve read a book when you haven’t?
Yes, I’ve done it a lot of times. At school I tell my teachers I read the books they assign but usually Sparknotes does the trick.

Have you ever borrowed a book and not returned it?
I just checked all the book I own and no I don’t own any that I borrowed but never gave back and I can’t remember a time where I did.

Have you ever read a series out of order?
No, I can’t imagine that. I would be too confused and way too focused on the fact that I haven’t read the other books to fully enjoy the one in front of me. I did accidentally buy the 2nd book of a series twice without noticing until I was at home, but that’s different.

Have you ever spoiled a book for someone?
Probably, but not on purpose. Sometimes a friend will tell me they don’t care or that they want to hear the ending so I’ll tell them. I would never purposely spoil it though.

Have you ever doggy eared a book?
No, because I am always too afraid to, but I think I want to start. The end result looks so cool and I don’t want to be super careful of all my books. I would rather have them look worn and actually read.

Have you ever told someone you don’t own a book when you do?
I don’t think I have. I don’t have any books I am ashamed to own or anything. I don’t see any reason for lying about this.

Have you ever told someone you haven’t read a book when you have?
I don’t think I have ever done this either. I am usually proud to have read any book that other people are talking about.

Have you every skipped a chapter or a section of a book?
Jane Eyre. I had to read it this month for summer reading but the middle was getting really boring. I just skipped multiple paragraphs.

Have you ever bad mouthed a book you actually liked?
Yes. I enjoyed Twilight when I read it in like 5th grade but when everyone started to hate on it, I did, too. I think that’s one of the only times though.

ending

April Wrap Up and May TBR

I read a total of 8 books in April, which is surprising because it felt like a busy month.

  1. A Court Of Thorns And Roses by Sarah J. Maas: At first, I found this book very boring and I didn’t think I would like it, but since I was sent it on Kindle to borrow, I decided to pull through to the end. I am happy that I did because the story really picked up. I will not be finishing the series, however. Maas has a lot of problematic scenes in the third book which are offensive and hurtful. 4/5 stars
  2. Passenger by Alexandra Bracken: I did not enjoy this book at all. I also borrowed it from someone on Kindle, so I finished it. It was very slow paced, and not a lot of action happened. 3/5 stars
  3. Never, Never by Colleen Hoover and Tarryn Fisher: THIS BOOK WAS AMAZING. It’s a super short read, at only a little over 100 pages. There is a huge cliffhanger at the end, and I can’t wait to read parts 2 and 3. This is my 3rd Colleen Hoover book, and I plan on reading a lot more by her because I’ve loved them all. 5/5 stars
  4. Only A Kiss by Ines Bautista-Yao: This book is a cute, quick read. The writing wasn’t great, but I enjoyed the story. I only read it because I got it free on Amazon! 3/5 stars
  5. I Am More Than A Daydream by Jennae Cecelia: This is Jennae’s 3rd poetry collection, and by far my favorite! I read it in one sitting, and related to a lot of the poetry. 5/5 stars
  6. Holding Up The Universe by Jennifer Niven: I loved this book. I read it pretty quickly, and it was really fast paced, which I liked. I loved the main characters, and the story was really empowering. 4/5 stars
  7. The Wingsnatchers by Sarah Jean Horwitz: I received an ARC of this book, and it just came out on April 25th, so I wanted to finish it before release day. It was a cute story, but definitely geared towards middle school kids. 3/5 stars
  8. Night By Elie Wiesel: This book is a true account of a Jewish man during the Holocaust. It was devastating and made me tear up, but I am glad I read it. It really opens your eyes to the horrors people faced. 5/5 stars

Now for my TBR! I don’t have a lot of books on my list, because I never stick to my TBR anyways.

FullSizeRender.jpg

  1. Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon: The movie comes out mid-May, so I definitely want to finish this book before then.
  2. Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard: I started this book the last week of April, but I have yet to finish it, so it is my goal to do so.
  3. Silence by Natasha Preston: I also started this a few days ago, and I am almost done. I really, really want to finish it because I accidentally read a spoiler, and now I can’t stop thinking about it!

 

Illuminae- Book Review

Authors: Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Goodreads Synopsis: This morning, Kady thought breaking up with Ezra was the hardest thing she’d have to do. This afternoon, her planet was invaded.

The year is 2575, and two rival megacorporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to fight their way onto an evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit.

But their problems are just getting started. A deadly plague has broken out and is mutating, with terrifying results; the fleet’s AI, which should be protecting them, may actually be their enemy; and nobody in charge will say what’s really going on. As Kady hacks into a tangled web of data to find the truth, it’s clear only one person can help her bring it all to light: the ex-boyfriend she swore she’d never speak to again.

IMG_3694IMG_3693

My Review:
I recently read Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff and let me tell you- it was a rollercoaster of emotions.

This book is sci-fi, so definitely not my normal read. I went into it without knowing anything, besides that the book community really loves it. I think that really helped with my overall enjoyment, because I don’t think I would have bothered to pick it up otherwise, and I didn’t know what to expect. It tells a story through conversations, interviews, emails, and so much more. It is definitely not your typical YA book. Every page is like a new adventure. It shows different point of views, including a computer’s, and the overall concept was so unique.

The co-authors did an amazing job piecing this book together. The writing was really good, and the page editors knew what they were doing. The layouts are so intriguing and it was cool turning the page and not knowing what was going to be there.

It is so clever and well done, because you learn so much from just snippets of information.

I will admit, the beginning was a little hard to get through because there are a lot of technical science terms introduced, but they are essential to the story. It was a little confusing because there were so many names and characters. Once you get through the first few pages you get a feel for it and get used to the terms.

I totally and 100% ship the main characters, Ezra and Kady. Their connection is just so real and so honest. I love the sarcastic and teasing relationship they have because that relates to me a lot. I really felt connected to these characters, even if I have never gone through something like this.

There are a couple of plot twists at the end that I did not see coming at all. They were completely shocking to me (my literal reaction: No no no no no no).

I will definitely pick up Gemina, the sequel, soon because after the cliffhanger I need to know more.

Rating: 5/5 stars

ending

{HUGE} March Book Haul! 

March was a great book buying month for me. I purchased from BookOutlet for the first time this month and I am so glad I did. Most of the books I bought just based off the covers and synopsis, and haven’t heard anything about them previously. I am excited to see if I like them or not. I also received a lot of books, or bought them at other places! Trust me, I wouldn’t have the money to buy all these books if they weren’t in sale!

I won’t be able to give a long description of the books because it would be too long, so there are just my initial thoughts!

BookOutlet:

  • Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff– I heard great things about this book so I had to buy it! I already finished it so a review will be up soon.
  • Everything Leads to You by Nina Lacour– This is a book I have heard good things about for a while, so I look forward to reading it! (Update: It is AMAZING)
  • Beholding Bee by Kimberly Newton Fusco– This cover is so beautiful and the synopsis really intrigued me.
  • Joyride by Anna Banks– I don’t even remember what this is about but it’s probably a contemporary based off the cover! I really like the cover and that’s why I bought it.
  • Sanctuary Bay by Laura J. Burns and Melinda Metz– Another gorgeous cover, this book is more of a mystery though, if I remember correctly.
  • Thin Space by Jody Casella- Mystery/Thriller book!
  • Ruthless by Carolyn Lee Adams- The synopsis sounds interesting! It’s about a murder/er I think!
  • Where I Belong by Gwendolyn Heasley- I don’t like the cover of this but I wanted to make my order an even number (10 instead of 9) so I just added it to my cart last minute.
  • The Last Echo by Kimberly Derting- I didn’t realize until after I made the purchase that this is the 3rd book in a series, so I probably won’t read it anytime soon.
  • The Fall by Bethany Griffin- I don’t think I will be a huge fan of this book, but I want to give it a try.

If you have ever thought about purchasing from BookOutlet but were unsure of the state of the book, I can assure that they come in great condition! All the books I bought came unharmed in any way, and because they are so cheap, I was surprised. BookOutlet buys the extra stock of books that sellers have at a cheaper price, so they are brand new. I am so glad I made this purchase. I bought 10 books for only $30.

Target:

IMG_8484.JPG

  • Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard- This book has both good and bad reviews but it was hyped a lot so of course I bought it (it’s about time).

Advanced Reader’s Copy (ARC):

IMG_8476.JPG

Processed with VSCO with 4 preset

  • The Map That Leads to You by J.P. Monninger– I received an ARC of this book this month and I am extremely excited because it’s the first arc I have ever received. It doesn’t come out until June, and I am really excited to read it.
  • Carmer and Grit by Sarah Jean Horwitz– I’m honestly not sure how I received this book because I don’t remember entering to get it. I am happy though and it looks like a great read! It comes out in April.
  • Can’t Buy Forever by Susan Laffoon– This is not an ARC but the author sent it to me to review. It is out, so you can purchase it if you would like! My review is up if you want to check it out here.

Used Books:

Processed with VSCO with 4 preset

  • Second Sight by Philip R. Craig and William G. Tapply- I purchased this book at a used book store near me! It is the first purchase I made there, so it was a bit rushed and I picked this book randomly.

E-Books:

  • It Starts Like This by Shelby Leigh- This is a poetry collection that I have been wanting to read for a while, so of course I knew I needed it when it went on sale!
  • A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J Maas- I have been wanting to read this for ages, and someone on Twitter was kind enough to lend it to me through kindle!
  • Passenger by Alexandra Bracken- Another book that was lent to me, and I can not wait to read!
  • The Chaos of Longing by K.Y. Robinson- Another poetry book that has great reviews.
  • Uncaged Wallflower by Jennae Cecelia- I think I might have gotten this in February actually, oh well. After reading Jennae’s first book, I wanted to give this one a go, too.
  • Because You’re Mine by Colleen Cobble- I got this book on NetGalley to review so I need to post a review of it when I finish!
  • Forgotten Sins by Rebecca Zanetti- I also got this book for free (I don’t like e-books so I only get them if they’re free LOL) but it sounds interesting!

So that is my whole haul! I can’t believe I received/purchased 22 books this month (new record for me). Let me know if you have any of these and what you think about them. Also, let me know If you want a review of any of these.

ending