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

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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

my favorite underrated books!

The book community hypes up so many novels and I often find myself only reading the books that are trending. That being said, I never read any books outside of that small circle of highly popular ones.

This is so sad to me.

There are so many amazing books that people just don’t know about so they never read. Before social media was a huge part of my life, I would go to the library or the bookstore and just read the inside flaps of books to see what they were about. That was how I picked books to read. Now I don’t even know what the books I own are about at all, I just know I have heard about them online.

Today I want to recommend some of my favorite underrated books!

Talking as Fast as I Can- Lauren Graham

This one I’m sure many of you have heard of, especially if you are a Gilmore Girls fan like me! I adored Lauren’s writing style so much, and hearing her read the words made the experience so much better. It really made me fall more in love with her, and I am so glad I got to read this.

Everything You Want Me to Be- Mindy Mejia

I got this book in a subscription box and at first I was a little skeptical. However, I really ended up enjoying the book, and I am so glad I read it. It is full of twists and really interesting characters.

Sanctuary Bay- Laura J. Burns

This book was so good. I remember being completely shocked by every page. I would love to read a sequel to this book because I really miss the world and characters. Definitely give it a try.

Confess- Colleen Hoover

Colleen Hoover is a popular author. This book does not get a lot of attention though, which is unfortunate. I enjoyed it so much, as I do all of her books. It was also a really quick read for me. I’ve even gotten many of my friends to check it out as well.

7300 Days- Isabella Mente

This is such an underrated poetry book. Isabella deserves way more recognition than she gets, and I will back her on any of her projects. She is also such a sweetheart and I love talking to her. If you are a poetry fan, check out this book because it is so beautiful.

Every Last Word- Tamara Ireland Stone

I think I have talked about this book a total of 7 times at least on this blog, but it is one of my all time favorites. I felt really connected to it and I loved the plot twist. I genuinely didn’t see it coming. I plan on re-reading this book in 2018.

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Please leave some of your favorite non-hyped books down in the comments! I am always looking for new books to read.

xo, Jessica

books i will probably never read tag!

A really hyped book that you’re not interested in reading

I was super interested in these books a few years ago, but I kept putting them off. Now that I have grown up, I don’t think these books will be as interesting to me and I won’t relate to them as much. I have a little regret about not reading these when I was in my prime fangirling phase, because I don’t think I will ever read these now.

A series you won’t start/won’t be finishing

Passenger was such a boring book to me. I could barely get through it, and although there was a cliffhanger at the end, I don’t see myself ever picking up the next book. Red Queen was alright, but just too slow for me. I didn’t enjoy it as much as I had hoped, and I don’t really want to read the rest.

A classic you’re just not interested in

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I honestly don’t know much about this book but it has never appealed to me and I really don’t see myself ever picking this up on my own.

A genre you never read

I don’t read a lot of historical fiction I realized, because I tend to lean towards books that are set in modern times. I am not a history person in general, so I don’t pick these books up often. I also don’t read a lot of Non-fiction, but I am hoping to start reading some more!

A book on your shelves you’ll probably never read

I bought both of these without realizing they aren’t the first books of the series. I haven’t had the desire to buy the rest of the series of either of these books, so I probably won’t be getting to them anytime soon (if ever).

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What are some books you probably won’t read? Let me know in the comments!

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Bookworm Pet Peeves

If you are anything like me and carry a book around with you everywhere you go, I’m sure that this list of pet peeves will make you cringe. Let me know which one you relate to most in the comments!

  1. Stickers on books
    This is my number one pet peeve ever. Who thought it would be a good idea to put stickers on books? Especially when they are hard to come off or leave the glue residue. It makes me so mad.
  2. People who try to talk to you while reading
    When other people listen to music with headphones on, I don’t disturb them. So why do people think it’s ok to bother me when I’m in the middle of a sentence? My sister does this to me the most.
  3. When someone asks “why do you even like to read”
    I need it to live and breathe. The real question is why don’t you read? Reading is an escape for me and it has helped me cope with hard times. That’s why.
  4. When you have to wait a year for the next book of a series to come out.
    *cough cough* To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before *cough cough*
  5. Someone who says they liked the movie better
    I BET YOU DIDN’T EVEN READ THE BOOK!!
  6. Spoilers
    The absolute worst. At least put a warning before you tell someone the ending of a book or movie. It’s just cruel.
  7. Having a friend that doesn’t like your favorite book
    I actually consider not being friends with them anymore. It takes everything in me not to scream at them.
  8. When people ask to borrow your books
    I hate this so so much because I have very little trust in people. But at the same time, I can’t say no because I want them to experience the love I have for the book. I am so afraid that they will ruin it or not give it back though. This one is a huge struggle.
  9. Being judged for not going out so you can read
    I usually have to come up with an excuse, so the only person who judges me is my sister. But it’s worth it.
  10. Books you don’t like that end in cliffhangers
    I hate when I’m reading a book that I didn’t enjoy at all has a crazy ending that has me so SHOOK that I need to read the next one. I need to know what happens next but I don’t want to suffer through another 300 pages of boring writing to find out.

Have anything to add to the list? Let me know in the comments!

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The Book Blogger Insider Tag

I saw Marie over on Drizzle and Hurricane Books do this tag and I loved it. I am a nosy person, so naturally I was curious about her answers to these questions, and I wanted to do it myself.

Rules:
– Answer the questions
– Credit the creator: Camryn- The Writing Crafter
– Tag 5 people

  1. Where do you typically write your blog posts?
    Usually at my desk in my room. I have everything that I need right in front of me and it’s not too cluttered. If I am feeling a little lazy, I go to my bed instead. But, I feel and think better at a desk.
  2. How long does it generally take you to write a book review?
    It typically takes me about an hour to write one. This is because I re-read a synopsis of the book, plan out what I want to write and include, and then I begin actually writing. I edit the post right after usually, because it doesn’t always make sense right away. Sometimes my words get jumbled up as I’m spilling them onto the page, so editing can take 1/2 an hour, give or take.
  3. When did you start your book blog?
    Ok it’s time to get a bit technical. I began my blog almost 2 years ago, but it was mainly fashion and beauty. I only began book blogging about 3 months ago. I have been reading for as long as I can remember, though.
  4. What is the worst thing about having a book blog in your opinion?
    The worst thing about having a book blog is that my urge to buy new books is never ending. I see bloggers raving about a book, so I feel like I need it. I spend way too much money on books now.
  5. What is the best thing about having a book blog in your opinion?
    The community. Everyone is so nice and welcoming.
  6. What blog post have you had the most fun writing so far?
    Probably the “My Life In Books Tag.” I enjoyed picking out the books and putting thought into my answers. And the photography was fun, too.
  7. What is your favorite type of blog post to write?
    This is hard because I don’t write the same type of blog post very often. I think my favorite is writing a monthly TBR because I like to set goals for myself. This keeps me on track and gives me something to follow.
  8. When do you typically write?
    I typically write in the morning. On the weekends when I wake up, I try to start on blog posts as early as possible because that is when I have the most lighting (for photography) and I generate the best ideas. I rarely write a full blog post late at night, but if I get a random spark of inspiration, I could be up until 3 am writing.
  9. Do you review every book you read?
    No, definitely not. I would not have time to do that, and some books just aren’t worth reviewing. This does not mean that the book is bad, just that it has probably been out a long time and many reviews have already been written. Or the book just hasn’t affected me enough to want to write about it.
  10. How do you write your book reviews? With a cup of tea/coffee? With Netflix? Cuddled with your pet?
    I can not have the distraction of Netflix, but I sometimes like to have music playing. I almost always have some tea and a little snack with me.
  11. When do you write your book reviews? Right after reading the book? Two weeks after finishing the book?
    I try to write them right when I finish so that it is still fresh in my mind. But, I do take notes on the books I plan to review, so sometimes I don’t get around to it for a week and can still talk about everything I wanted to.
  12. How often do you post?
    I try to post every three days. Sometimes my schedule is too busy though, so I only get one post up in a week.

I tag anyone who wants to do this! I know that tagging someone makes them feel forced to do it, so this is up to you.

XO, Jessica

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.

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  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!

 

Uniquely Me Tag

Hello loves! I have a tag post today that I was nominated for by Awkwardsaurus! Thank you for the tag angel :) Anyways, the point of the tag is to make a list of things that are unique about you. I think the idea is really cute, so of course I wanted to do it.

The Rules:
1. Thank the person that nominated you for this tag and link to their blog (spread the love, basically).
2. Write as many things that are unique to you as possible: these can be things that you do, say, like or have that make you different to other people or let you stand out. It can be what defines you as a person, a little thing about you that is just simply you or something little known that you think makes you up as a person.
3. Nominate up to 10 bloggers or as many as you like; there isn’t a limit.
4. You can take this tag as seriously or non-seriously as you like; you can laugh whilst doing it or feel contemplative: this is about you, after all.
5. After you’ve written this and if you ever feel like there’s nothing to you but what other people have already said and done, look back to your post and remember that it isn’t true.

Here we go…

  • Many people don’t know this about me, but I actually love to write poetry. Let me know in the comments if you would like me to share some of my work.
  • I am a super organized person, besides the fact that I have messy handwriting. I’m always writing to-do lists, planning, etc.
  • I have hazel eyes, meaning that some days my eyes are brown and other days they are green. My license only says brown though because I didn’t know what the abbreviation for hazel was, and I was too afraid to ask.
  • I love love love to run and workout.
  • I am super indecisive. I change my mind constantly, but only because I have a variety of interests and want to get to all of them.
  • I love interior design and redecorating my room, and I used to do it on a monthly basis.
  • I have a strange love for mozzarella sticks. No, seriously. If I see mozzarella sticks on the menu at any restaurant, I will order them.
  • I basically have a collection of journals, and I can’t stop myself from buying more.
  • I write all over my books. I highlight, write comments, underline, circle, etc. I know most book lovers think it is a sin, but it makes books feel more unique to me ;)

That is all that I can think of right now, but I think it is a pretty good list! I actually won’t be tagging anyone specifically, because I think anyone who wants to do this tag should! Send me your links if you decide to do it yourself.

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How To Write a Book Review- pt. 2

If you remember, I wrote a post about how to write a book review-the note-taking process a while back. Today I have the second (and last) part of the mini series, in which I will describe what I write and include in my book reviews.

This might be helpful for some of you just emerging in the blogging world, or if you want to improve your reviews!

What To Include:

There are a few things that I think are necessary to include in a book review. They will help the audience understand what your review and the book is about and give some insight to what you think about it.

  1. Title and Author- As obvious as this seems, I often forget to include the authors name in the title of the post, so it is crucial to include it somewhere else. It is usually the first thing I write in case if anyone decides they want to read it. There are sometimes books with the same or similar titles, so this will provide ease to the audience.
  2. Synopsis- I don’t like writing my own synopsis because I feel like I don’t do a good enough job, so I usually use the Goodreads one. I find this helpful when I read other reviews if I haven’t heard of the book before. That is why I like to include it in my own reviews.
  3. Rating- I like seeing a rating depicted somewhere. The rating is really good to get an initial or final standpoint from the blogger. I usually include mine at the end, but in the beginning is fine as well.
  4. Review- And of course, you can’t forget the actual review. Let me break down what I write in the review for you now.

In The Review:

There are certain topics most reviews should cover as to get the most from it. For me, this includes the characters, plot, writing style, and overall feelings.

  1. Characters- It is a good idea to talk about your thoughts on the characters. This could range from whether you liked them or not to the character’s growth. I love reading about characters because I like to connect at least one, and this gives me a good idea about if I will. If I read the review and don’t like any of the characters already, I know I won’t enjoy the book as much.
  2. Plot- A no brainer. If the plot isn’t good, what is the point of the book? Is there a lot of action? Will it make you cry? Are there plot twists? Those are all great questions to address in your review!
  3. Writing Style- If the author has a good writing style will be a deciding factor for if I finish the book or not. I try to talk about the author’s writing style and what I thought about it in every review as well. Especially if the story was slow or fast paced, or if the writing style made it difficult to read.
  4. Overall Feelings- This is the fun part. All those notes you took on the book earlier- use the thoughts you jotted down and include them in your review. This can be your favorite scenes, funny dialogue, cute quotes, etc!

I hope this mini series was helpful for you, and maybe you’ll use some of these tips for your own review! Let me know in the comments what you think is important to include in a review.

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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.

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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

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