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 🙂

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  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.

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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!

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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?

 

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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Read Dog Book Subscription Unboxing!

This post is SUPER exciting because it is actually in collaboration with Read Dog! They are a monthly book subscription box where you get to fill out a form describing what type of books you read! They send you a book they think you will like based on the response.

The contents of my box are…
1. 2 notecards explaining the theme of the box and some of the contents.
2. I also got a little read dog sticker which will be super cute to put in my journal!
3. There were 2 charms included- a puzzle piece and a blue stone. They look really cute and I will probably put them on a necklace chain.
4. A bookmark came with it as well, with the definition of sonder, which is actually the theme.
5. There was also a white grape tea (and directions with how to use it) which I am so so happy about. I absolutely love tea, and this one sounds so good.
6. There is also a little painting included which is beautiful.
7. The last thing besides the book is some puzzle pieces. If you read the card it comes with, it says that sonder is the realization that everyone around us has their own story. The puzzle pieces remind us that we are part of a whole, not the entire story.

 

As for the book, I received Everything You Want Me To Be by Mindy Mejia.

Here is the Goodreads synopsis:
Hattie Hoffman has spent her whole life playing many parts: the good student, the good daughter, the good girlfriend. But Hattie wants something more, something bigger, and ultimately something that turns out to be exceedingly dangerous. When she’s found brutally stabbed to death, the tragedy rips right through the fabric of her small-town community.

It soon comes to light that Hattie was engaged in a highly compromising and potentially explosive secret online relationship. The question is: Did anyone else know? And to what lengths might they have gone to end it? Hattie’s boyfriend seems distraught over her death, but had he fallen so deeply in love with her that she had become an obsession? Or did Hattie’s impulsive, daredevil nature simply put her in the wrong place at the wrong time, leading her to a violent death at the hands of a stranger?
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If you want to purchase your own Read Dog box, click here! Thank you so much to Read Dog for sponsoring this post. I can not wait to read the book 🙂

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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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March Wrap Up

Another month, another wrap up! March was a good book month for me overall. Most of the books I read I really enjoyed (besides one or two). I read a total of 9 books this month which is really good as well. Plus, I bought a ton which never happens, so if you want you can check out my haul here!

  1. Caraval by Stephanie Garber: This is the first book I read in March and I posted a review that you can check out here.
    -Summary: This story follows Scarlett and her sister Tessa, as they escape their isle in search of the magical Caraval. They get there (along with a mystery man) to try to win the grand prize- a wish. But when Tessa is kidnapped, there is more for Scarlett to lose than just a reward.
  2. The Boy In The Striped Pajamas by John Boyne: I bought this really long ago and I finally had the chance to read it and watch the movie. It wasn’t as good as I hoped it would be, but I am glad I got it off my TBR.
    -Summary: This book is set in the World War II era, and follows a young boy. When his family moves to a new country, he feels really lonely since there are no other kids his age. He eventually meets another boy, on the other side of the fence that his parents told him to stay away from, and a friendship ensues. (Warning- will probably make you cry)
  3. To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee: This was my second time reading this book- both times for school. It is an essential read for everyone.
    -Summary: It is a story about a family living in a small, southern town in which a trial erupts between a black man and a white woman. Super important novel about racism told by an adult through child’s eyes.
  4. Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff: I will have my review for this up soon! I really loved this book.
    -Summary: Told from a futuristic time period, where two corporations are at war, forcing an entire planet of people to evacuate. It documents the journey of the people and the struggles they faced.
  5. It Starts Like This by Shelby Leigh: This is a poetry collection that I highly enjoyed and definitely recommend. It is one of my all time favorites.
  6. Can’t Buy Forever by Susan Laffoon: I DNF’d this but I am still going to count it because I really tried. You can read why I DNF’d it here, plus a summary.
  7. Everything Leads To You by Nina LaCour: I wanted to read this book for so so long and I finally did. It is a great diverse lead, as the main character is part of the LGBTQ+ community.
    -Summary: Emi is an intern as a set designer for films, and hopes to pursue that career in the future. When her brother leaves town for a couple of months for a movie shoot, he leaves his apartment to her and her best friend. The one catch- she has to do something meaningful/exciting while she’s there.
  8. The Chaos of Longing by K.Y. Robinson: Another poetry collection that wasn’t really my favorite, but there were a few poems I loved.
  9. Sanctuary Bay by Laura J. Burns and Melinda Metz: This book deserves way more recognition. The story was so mysterious and kept me on the edge of my seat.
    – Summary: Sanctuary Bay is an elite prep school for some of the most important and wealthiest families in the country. When Sarah, an orphan, receives a letter saying she’s been given a scholarship to attend, she is extremely skeptical. After she arrives, it seems like a miracle. However, secrets and trouble seem to be stirring up, and no one notices but her.

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{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:

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  • 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):

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  • 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:

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  • 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.

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Caraval by Stephanie Garber- Review

Book: Caraval
Author: Stephanie Garber
Goodreads Synopsis: Scarlett has never left the tiny island where she and her beloved sister, Tella, live with their powerful, and cruel, father. Now Scarlett’s father has arranged a marriage for her, and Scarlett thinks her dreams of seeing Caraval, the far-away, once-a-year performance where the audience participates in the show, are over.

But this year, Scarlett’s long-dreamt of invitation finally arrives. With the help of a mysterious sailor, Tella whisks Scarlett away to the show. Only, as soon as they arrive, Tella is kidnapped by Caraval’s mastermind organizer, Legend. It turns out that this season’s Caraval revolves around Tella, and whoever finds her first is the winner.

Scarlett has been told that everything that happens during Caraval is only an elaborate performance. But she nevertheless becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic with the other players in the game. And whether Caraval is real or not, she must find Tella before the five nights of the game are over, a dangerous domino effect of consequences is set off, and her sister disappears forever.

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*Spoiler Free Review*

Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

There has been tons of hype surrounding this book for the past month or so in the book blogging community. Of course I had to join in because the synopsis was really intriguing. Let me tell you, it definitely lives up to its reviews. I read page after page in the course of a couple of days. I stayed up late just to finish it because I wanted to know what would happen next. I genuinely could not put it down.

No, this book is not perfect (is any book?). But the storyline was just so interesting that it makes up for it. For one thing, you don’t know which direction it is headed in. You might be expecting one event to happen, but the plot takes a total turn. There were points where I was internally screaming because I didn’t see something coming.

The introduction of this book is what really got me. Stephanie Garber really knows how to draw in her readers. It was so sad to read about, but when a book can pull out my emotions, I know it is a good one.

The characters are also amazing. You feel like you can’t trust anyone, because the whole island is so mysterious. But at the same time, I still shipped a lot of the characters together, even if I wasn’t sure I should. There were some relationships I secretly wanted to happen, and some that were happening that I didn’t want at first.

I don’t want to share any more details because it is important you don’t go into the book knowing more than the synopsis above. It will make the enjoyment and initial confusion so much better.

Overall, this book really lived up to my expectations. It was clever. It was well written. I am really hoping for a sequel to this because the story can’t just be left there. I will be the first to buy book two if it happens!

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