None right now

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Goodreads As Social Media

I love Goodreads. Does any book lover not love Goodreads? I'm constantly scrolling through Goodreads, adding books to my TBR, keeping track of my reading, finding pretty book covers, etc.

But you know what? I completely forget that Goodreads is a social media site. I forget that I can like and comment on other people's reviews. I forget that I can add friends and join groups and connect with more bookish people on this website. And it's just so weird to me that I forget this. For me, Goodreads is more of a tool for personal use, and that kind of makes me sad because I feel like I'm missing out on such a wonderful way to meet more bookish friends.

I know this is a very short discussion post, but it's actually something I've been pondering a lot lately. I think I'm going to make more of an effort to use Goodreads as a means of connection with other people in the book community.

How do you use Goodreads? Are you like me, using it for your own records? Or do you like to be social? Also, what are your favorite parts of Goodreads, some features that I really need to start utilizing? 

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Top Ten Series With The Prettiest Covers

Okay, so I know that I'm the one who came up with this topic for myself this week, but it was still SUPER DUPER DIFFICULT. Because there are SO MANY stunning book covers in this world--it's almost not fair. I even narrowed it down to series, and then I narrowed it down more to series that have more than one cover revealed (because there are lots of series with pretty covers, but only the first cover is out thus far). But still, this was tough tough tough. Why do the cover designers have to be so fracking talented?

The Archived series by Victoria Schwab - Just LOOK at these. Tell me these wouldn't catch your eyes in a book store. I haven't read these, but I want to, and I want to buy them, just because they are gorgeous. I love the colors and the smoky look they got goin' on.

The Caster Chronicles by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl - I've always loved these covers (especially in person). They're dark and simple and the font is beautiful!

The Firebird series by Claudia Gray - This is another series I haven't read but dem covers are HUBBA HUBBA. I feel like they're really unique, and, of course, I'm basically a toddler, so I love all things colorful. 

The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer - I've always loved these covers. The illustrated look of these colors paired with the color scheme and unique font...It's just so appealing. 

Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children series by Ransom Riggs - Aggh! These are just so delightfully creepy. 

The Passenger series by Alexandra Bracken - These are SO aesthetically pleasing. And they're not entirely unique, but at the same time, they're different than any other covers. I especially love the city in the bottle on Passenger's cover, but I love the purple on Wayfarer's cover. 

The Conspiracy of Us series by Maggie Hall - Usually I'm not too fond of the Girl In A Pretty Dress covers just because they're so generic, but there's something about these covers that I am drawn to. I have no idea what these books are even about, but I wanna read 'em. And, of course, I loooove the color of Map of Fates

The Wrath & the Dawn duology by Renee Ahdieh - Whenever I see these books on someone's shelves, I just get so jealous. The colors are beautiful, and I think the design is so unique. While I do want to read these books, I'd buy them just so they could sit on my shelves and look pretty. 

To All the Boys I've Loved Before series by Jenny Han - I don't know what it is about these covers that I've always been obsessed with. Seriously, every time I look at my bookshelf, my eyes always immediately go to these books because I love their covers and their spines a lot. I just love how soft and feminine they are, and THAT FONT!! I can't wait to see what the new book looks like, and I can't wait to add it to my shelf. 

The Star-Touched Queen series by Roshani Chokshi - *drools* The cover for A Crown of Wishes was just revealed last week and I think my heart stopped when I saw it. The colors and images are so pretty in themselves, but I think what really does it for me is the little border. That detail just kind of ties both of these covers together, in my opinion. 

Talk to me! What do you think of these covers above? What other series do you think have drool-worthy covers? 

Monday, June 27, 2016

Lefty's Lowdown: We Own the Night by Ashley Poston

We Own the Night by Ashley Poston
(Radio Hearts #2)
Pulished: June 28, 2016 by Bloomsbury Spark
Source: I received an eARC of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. That's exactly what this review is: honest. My opinions have not been influenced in any way.
Summary from Goodreads:
"Happy midnight, my fellow Niteowls..."

As a candy store employee by day, and mysterious deejay "Niteowl" by night, eighteen-year-old Ingrid North is stuck between rock 'n roll and a hard place. She can't wait to get out of her tiny hometown of Steadfast, Nebraska (population three hundred and forty-seven) to chase her dreams, but small-town troubles keep getting in the way. She can't abandon her grandmother with Alzheimer's, or her best friend Micah--who she may or may not be in love with.

But for one hour each Saturday, she escapes all of that. On air, she isn't timid, ugly-sweater-wearing Ingrid North. She's the funny and daring Niteowl. Every boy's manic pixie dream girl. Fearless. And there is one caller in particular-- Dark and Brooding--whose raspy laugh and snarky humor is just sexy enough to take her mind off Micah. Not that she's in love with Micah or anything. Cause she's not.

As her grandmother slips further away and Micah begins dating a Mean-Girls-worthy nightmare, Ingrid runs to the mysterious Dark and Brooding as a disembodied voice to lean on, only to fall down a rabbit hole of punk rockstars, tabloid headlines, and kisses that taste like bubble tea. But the man behind the voice could be surprising in all the right, and wrong, ways.

And she just might find that her real life begins when Niteowl goes off the air.
I definitely didn't know what to expect going into this novel. I'm not sure why, but I just kinda thought it would be not-great, and I wasn't actually looking forward to reading it. But WOWZA BUDDY WAS I WRONG. I'm incredibly impressed by this novel. I loved every second of it! 

So, I had a tough time thinking up a rating of this book, because it isn't necessarily the most original story, and it's probably not a book that I'm going to constantly fangirl over and shove in people's hands. This is the type of book that is just so perfect in the moment. It was cute and fun, but it also dealt with some really meaningful subjects, and it had some touching moments. 

This novel follows Iggy, who received some bad news the end of her senior year of high school and distanced herself from her three best friends. However, that doesn't stop Iggy from being in love with one of those best friends--Micah. But then Iggy agrees to go to a party with her friends, and she sees Micah kissing another girl, and things just kinda go downhill from there as she struggles to unravel who and what she wants in life. I really liked Iggy. I didn't necessarily love her, but I found her to be good-intentioned and relatable. I was rooting for her a ton, and I really enjoyed watching her grow and figure herself out. 

As for her friends, I freaking adored LD. She was my favorite character in the book. She was such a good friend to Iggy, even when she didn't necessarily deserve it, and she was just so kickass. Billie, the "golden boy" best friend was adorable! I liked him a lot as well. I didn't like Micah, though. He was, scientifically speaking, a giant douche spoon (I'm pretty sure that was the point). Poston did a fantastic job of giving her side characters depth and fleshing out their character arcs. 

Now, I don't want to say too much, but this book deals with some serious stuff, like Alzheimer's, body image, homophobia, and death of a loved one. Poston handled those topics wonderfully. There were a couple points that I got really choked up, and I was on the verge of tears. 

Also, the radio aspect was really cool. I can't overlook that. 

All in all, this book was downright addicting! There wasn't a single point when I was reading that I felt bored, and that's something I've been struggling with a lot lately. By the end I was grinning like Cheshire cat, and I was actually rooting for the characters out loud (I kid you not, I sat up in my bed, placed a hand to my chest, and chanted, "Holy crap. HOLY CRAP. Yes, this is great! Yes!") This is a fantastic, feel-good summer book. 

P.S. - Even though this is the second book in a series, it is a standalone (it's a companion series). I didn't read the first one, but, obviously, that did not hinder my enjoyment of this novel. 

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Sunday Post #16

  • Hey there bookish friends! It has been a really good blogging and reading week for me, though I didn't do much else. 
  • I hung out by the pool by myself, soaking up some sun and reading. It's so incredible. It really makes it feel like summer. 
  • I listened to my first audiobook ever (Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell). I'm still not entirely sure how I feel about audiobooks, but I actually plan on making a YouTube video in which I discuss my mixed feelings.  
  • Also, I finally got my laptop back. I spilled water on it a few months ago, and the keyboard became really messed up. My dad brought it in to Rent-A-Center, where we bought it, to see if there was anything they could do. They had it for WEEKS and they didn't even touch it. Finally, they said they were going to send it into their repair shop place but gave it back to me for the night so I could save all my files. Well, turns out it magically fixed itself. I could not be happier! I've been using a desktop computer, but nothing makes me happier than lying in bed with my laptop to write or blog. 
Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
Aces Up by Lauren Barnholdt

Just Write #3

Top Ten (3) 2016 Releases So Far

Lessons I've Learned From Bookstagram
We Own the Night by Ashley Poston
And I Darken by Kiersten White
Defending Taylor by Miranda Kenneally

Top Ten Tuesday: Series With The Prettiest Book Covers
Sunday Post #17

Discussion - Goodreads As A Social Media Site
June Recap
 I've added 9 (I think it's 9) new books to my shelves this week. If you want to know what they are, you'll have to watch my book haul video next week!

Jessica at The Book Bratz has posted two note-worthy things this week. Firstly, she gives tips on how to balance blogging with a busy life. She also posted the lineup for the Summer Blogger Promo Tour, which is something I'm a part of, and super excited about. Such a great way to get to know other bloggers and to give them some love on your own blog.

Beth at The Quiet People shared her strategy for planning a month's worth of blogging. If planning ahead is something you're struggling with, I highly suggest this post. It might help you or give you inspiration!

Sierra from The Nerd Girl Review stopped by Temecka's blog, Library of Tomes, to talk about animosity in the LGBT+ community. This was a really emotional and thought-provoking post, and I recommend everyone give it a read!

I'll be (ideally) posting twice a week, on Mondays and Fridays.Make sure to subscribe to me if you want to stay updated on when and what I post! If you have a YouTube channel, send me your link because I wanna see whatchya got! Here are my videos from this week!

Friday, June 24, 2016

Lefty's Lowdown: Aces Up by Lauren Barnholdt

Aces Up by Lauren Barnholdt
Published: August 10, 2010 by Ember
Source: Purchased
Summary from Goodreads:
Seventeen-year-old high school senior Shannon Card needs money. And lots of it. She's been admitted to Wellesley, but her dad just lost his job, and somehow she has to come up with a year of tuition herself. But Shannon's dream of making big bucks waitressing at the local casino, the Collosio, disappears faster than a gambler's lucky streak. Her boss is a tyrant, her coworker is nuts, and her chances of balancing a tray full of drinks while wearing high-heeled shoes are slim to none. Worse, time is running out, and Shannon hasn't made even half the money she'd hoped.

When Shannon receives a mysterious invitation to join Aces Up, a secret network of highly talented college poker players, at first she thinks No way. She has enough to worry about: keeping her job, winning the coveted math scholarship at school, and tutoring her secret crush, Max. But when Shannon musters up the nerve to kiss Max and he doesn't react at all, the allure of Aces Up and its sexy eighteen-year-old leader, Cole, is suddenly too powerful to ignore.

Soon Shannon's caught up in a web of lies and deceit that makes worrying about tuition money or a high school crush seem like kid stuff. Still, when the money's this good, is the fear of getting caught reason enough to fold?

This fun, sexy, recession-proof story is a bubbly summer read with surprising depth—great for fans of Sarah Mlynowski.
I picked this book up because I had just finished Me Before You and I wanted something short and sweet to get me through all my emotions. Well, it was short, so there's that. I typically love almost-in-college books, so I was intrigued. Plus, SECRET POKER SOCIETY HOW COOL AMIRITE?

I wasn't right. The premise is the only thing this book has going for it. The execution was miserable. I'm not trying to be one of those people who get super bash-y in my negative reviews, but I'm not sure how to put it nicely: this is the most annoying book I've ever read in my life. 

I thought the narrator was judgmental, irritating, stupid, and selfish. She treated people like crap for no reason. By the end, she learns her lesson or whatever, but I didn't care. I literally started banging my head against this book several times because I got so freaking annoyed by all of it. Maybe I should take into consideration that this was written 6 years ago, but I found the writing to be forced and try-hard (with the use of the word "obvi" and "probs" and several instances of "BFF" it sounded like a middle-aged mom trying to be "hip"). 

Aside from the protagonist, I thought the rest of the characters were flat. We literally don't know anything about them. The only character I even liked a little bit was Robyn, the protagonist's sister. Max, the love interest, had potential, but again SO FLAT. 

I didn't care about anything that happened, but, like I said, it's a short book, so I forced myself to push through, but if it had been any longer I would have DNFed it. About 20 pages in, I started tabbing all the parts of the novel I found especially irritating, but once I started tabbing multiple spots on one page, I gave up on that. 

A few years ago I read another book by Barnholdt and, at least back then, I enjoyed it. I'll most likely try one more book by her (mostly because I own one more of her books), but if that one doesn't work for me, I'll probably never re-visit this author. I initially gave the book 2 stars, but I am lowering the rating half a star. 

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Lessons I've Learned From Bookstagram

Just typing the title made me feel like Spongebob ("What I learned in boating school iiiis...")

But never mind that. Today I'm here to talk to you beautiful book lovers about the delightful bookstagram. Now, I've been working (not always successfully) to be more active on my bookstagram account, and the main idea of this post is simple: BOOKSTAGRAM IS HARD. At least, for me it is...and I'm not even very good at it. But I think brushing up on my bookstagram skillz has taught me a few valuable lessons.

Like, EVERY detail. Are the flowers casting a shadow on the book? Would those pens look better if the blue one was in the middle or on the left? Is there a glare in my sunglasses? 

It's insane how many aspects of a picture you have to be aware of in order to get that "effortless" photo. 

Okay, so, here is the best example I can think of for this: 

I have naturally shaky hands. I do not own a tripod. How is one to get  a steady shot? I flip a trashcan upside down and set it atop a bar stool in some sort of makeshift tripod. It's so weird and I'd be embarrassed if anyone saw me using it, but until I get better equipment, I'd say it's pretty sufficient. 

Sometimes, you just have to find unconventional ways to make things work. 

When I first started bookstagramming, I'd scroll through my feed and notice all these cool objects people had in their pictures, and I'd think, well, maybe I'd be better at this if I had cool items in my house. But the more photos I took, the more I looked at the stuff I have--really looked, and I realized I do have cool stuff, if I want it to be. 

The little pebbles that I have in a vase with my fake flowers? I typically don't even see those when I walk into a room, but I can use those. The old (fake) pearl necklaces that I accidentally stole from my high school choir department? I can use those. All these "boring" objects that I hardly remember exist suddenly have potential to add a special something to my photos. 

Holy frickle frackle. If you bookstagram, you get it. If you don't, you will never understand how many pictures I take before I find one I want to use. I have to take pictures from a bazillion different angles. Then, I have to adjust one item and take a bazillion more pictures. So on and so forth. It takes a lot of patience and perseverance to finally get the picture you want. 

That's all I have for you today! Let me know if your bookstagram experience has been similar to mine. And tell me some of the lessons you've learned from bookstagramming. Also, leave links to your instagram profiles because I am dying to check ya out!

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Lefty's Lowdown: Me Before You by Jojo Moyes

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
(Me Before You #1)
Published: December 31, 2012 by Viking
Source: Purchased
Summary from Goodreads: 
Lou Clark knows lots of things. She knows how many footsteps there are between the bus stop and home. She knows she likes working in The Buttered Bun tea shop and she knows she might not love her boyfriend Patrick.

What Lou doesn't know is she's about to lose her job or that knowing what's coming is what keeps her sane.

Will Traynor knows his motorcycle accident took away his desire to live. He knows everything feels very small and rather joyless now and he knows exactly how he's going to put a stop to that.

What Will doesn't know is that Lou is about to burst into his world in a riot of colour. And neither of them knows they're going to change the other for all time.
 Me before this book: "It's fiiiine. I've seen the movie. I know what happens. I am emotionally prepared."

Me when I reach the last 30 pages of book: Full body sobbing, mascara smeared all over my face, the pile of crumpled, snotty tissues beside my bed grows at an alarming rate. 

You guys. YOU GUYS. I am obsessed with this book. I can not properly iterate my love for this book. It has consumed my entire being. That said, I am sorry if this review is an absolute mess.

I've decided to break the book down and discuss some of the most prominent aspects.

THE WRITING: I was hooked from the beginning. I can't really describe what makes the writing so great, because it's not especially poetic or anything, but it flows really well. Lou's voice was strong and engaging. I loved being in her head. Also, this book takes place in the UK, and, as a US resident, I found it really interesting to read from that perspective, with the dialect differences and whatnot.

THE MAIN CHARACTERS:  Will and Lou are EVERYTHING, you guys. Everything. They are both clever, and, deep down, beautifully kind. They are both wonderfully developed -- with their complicated lives and feelings -- and they experience different, but equally dynamic, growth. I was so incredibly invested in these characters and I am STILL invested in them. They will live in my heart forever and ever.

ROMANCE: Okay, what I find so incredible about this novel is that while it is about the romance, it's also just so much bigger than that. It's about these characters coming together and changing each other's lives, about finding happiness in unexpected places. Will and Lou were just unbelievably lovely together. They did everything to make each other happy. Lou was the only person Will could really talk to, and vice versa. Their relationship transcended the wheelchair and the dark feelings.

FAMILY: The family dynamics in this novel are so delightfully complex! Both Will and Lou have families who love them deeply, but are far from perfect. Their families could be mean and frustrating. They can ask too much. They can be selfish. But at the end of the day, the love is there, and that's so realistic. There were times when I really hated Lou's family especially, but times are tough for them, and they're not going to be all rainbows all the time.

OTHER CHARACTERS: Aside from the family, there are really only two secondary characters: Nathan--Will's nurse--and Patrick, Lou's boyfriend. Nathan was a good character, but not particularly special to me. I like how much he obviously cares about Will, though. Patrick on the other hand...Fucking Patrick. He was such a tool. I just, I couldn't deal with him. Of course, that's the point. But still. Screw Patrick.

I would not change anything about this book. It was stunning and poignant and emotional and everything I've ever needed. It's technically an adult book, but it reads a lot like a YA book. And I just think everyone in the entire world should read this novel and fall in love with it the way  I have.
5/5 (more like a gazillion/5)

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Top Ten (3) Favorite 2016 Releases So Far

Soooooo...turns out I haven't read a ton of 2016 releases. I've just been more in to backlist titles, I guess. And a few of the 2016 releases I've read haven't been that spectacular, so I have only THREE 2016 releases that really knocked it out of the park for me.

Blackhearts by Nicole Castroman
Published: February 9, 2016 by Simon Pulse

Summary from Goodreads:
Blackbeard the pirate was known for striking fear in the hearts of the bravest of sailors. But once he was just a young man who dreamed of leaving his rigid life behind to chase adventure in faraway lands. Nothing could stop him—until he met the one girl who would change everything. This is their story.

Edward "Teach" Drummond, son of one of Bristol's richest merchants, has just returned from a year-long journey on the high seas to find his life in shambles. Betrothed to a girl he doesn’t love and sick of the high society he was born into, Teach dreams only of returning to the vast ocean he’d begun to call home. There's just one problem: convincing his father to let him leave and never come back.

Following her parents' deaths, Anne Barrett is left penniless and soon to be homeless. Though she’s barely worked a day in her life, Anne is forced to take a job as a maid in the home of Master Drummond. Lonely days stretch into weeks, and Anne longs for escape. How will she ever realize her dream of sailing to CuraƧao—where her mother was born—when she's stuck in England?

From the moment Teach and Anne meet, they set the world ablaze. Drawn to each other, they’re trapped by society and their own circumstances. Faced with an impossible choice, they must decide to chase their dreams and go, or follow their hearts and stay.

Published: February 2, 2016 by Simon Pulse

Summary from Goodreads:
For as long as she can remember, Gwendolyn Allister has never had a place to call home—all because her mother believes that monsters are hunting them. Now these delusions have brought them to London, far from the life Gwen had finally started to build for herself. The only saving grace is her best friend, Olivia, who’s coming with them for the summer.

But when Gwen and Olivia are kidnapped by shadowy creatures and taken to a world of flesh-eating sea hags and dangerous Fey, Gwen realizes her mom might have been sane all along.

The world Gwen finds herself in is called Neverland, yet it’s nothing like the stories. Here, good and evil lose their meaning and memories slip like water through her fingers. As Gwen struggles to remember where she came from and find a way home, she must choose between trusting the charming fairy-tale hero who says all the right things and the roguish young pirate who promises to keep her safe.

With time running out and her enemies closing in, Gwen is forced to face the truths she’s been hiding from all along. But will she be able to save Neverland without losing herself?

The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson
Published: May 3, 2016 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

Summary from Goodreads: 
Andie had it all planned out.

When you are a politician’s daughter who’s pretty much raised yourself, you learn everything can be planned or spun, or both. Especially your future.

Important internship? Check.

Amazing friends? Check.

Guys? Check (as long as we’re talking no more than three weeks).

But that was before the scandal. Before having to be in the same house with her dad. Before walking an insane number of dogs. That was before Clark and those few months that might change her whole life.

Because here’s the thing—if everything’s planned out, you can never find the unexpected.

And where’s the fun in that?


Monday, June 20, 2016

Just Write #3

Ever since I started blogging again, I've been looking for a way to incorporate my writing hobby on my blog. Finally, I've figured out a way to do it. I've started a feature called Just Write, in which I share some of my writing/writing ideas. I'd love feedback, and it would be super cool if y'all wanted to share some of your writing/ideas with me! You can either do your own Just Write post and link it up in the comments, or you can put it right there in the comments. I'm super excited about this, so don't be shy when it comes to interacting. I want to hear anything you have to say!

Okay, so, I'm not a poet. I don't particularly like reading poetry all that much, and I don't really think I'm that great at writing it. But, for my major, I had to take a poetry workshop, and I figured I'd share one of the poems I wrote. This is a syllabic poem, meaning every line contains the same number of syllables. 

The Reality of Monsters

As children, monsters make up our nightmares.
Guttural growls grow louder and louder
as they wriggle out from under our beds.
They stand over us, sneering, baring sharp
incisors and black, soulless eyes. With a
cry, we awaken, and our parents rush
to our sides, ready to assure us that
the space under our beds, in our closets,
behind the curtains, is safe and there are
no monsters scheming to steal us at night.

As we grow older, we become convinced
that monsters are a work of fiction, that
there is no reason to fear ghouls and ghosts.

The reality of monsters is this:
oftentimes, monsters arrive in the form
of everything we ever dreamed of.
The real monsters beam a brilliant grin
and gaze at us with eyes that soften all
the rough edges in our hesitant minds.

The real monsters don’t hide under our beds,
because we welcome them into our beds,
invite them under the sheets, allow them
to slither into the most intimate
and vulnerable bits of our closed lives.

The real monsters don’t hide in our closets.
Our closets become museums full of
skeletons—ugly displays of every
instance of misplaced trust, unrequited
love, and empty words. Our monsters don’t loom
over us, because they stand beside us,
there to comfort us, to convince us that
we’d be happier if we were stolen.

Monsters don’t strike at night when we’re trying
to sleep, because they ensnare us in broad
daylight, when our eyes are wide open, and
they never give us back, not completely.

The reality of monsters is this:
they are everywhere and they are human.

Let me know what you think! Anything you think I can do to make it better? And, as always, I'd love to see some of your writing!  

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Sunday Post #15

  • This week hasn't been my best blogging week, but it was pretty decent for reading. 
  • I went swimming several times with my friends, and I am actually getting a slight tan, WHICH IS A FIRST FOR ME. 
  • I went to the movies a couple times, too! I saw The Conjuring 2 and Now You See Me 2, which were both great movies. 
  • And finally, I STARTED A BOOKTUBE CHANNEL. I'm so excited. So far, it has been a lot of fun. I will link it up down below! 
Reviews: Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

Misc: Unpopular Opinions Book Tag | MY FIRST BOOKTUBE VIDEO

That's it. That's all the blogging I did. AGH. 

Reviews: Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard

Memes: Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite 2016 Releases
Sunday Post #16

Features: Just Write #3

Misc: What I've Learned From Bookstagram
 I don't think I'm going to be including my book haul on my Sunday Post posts anymore, because I'll be doing book haul videos on my youtube channel.

Brittany at The Book Addict's Guide touched on a subject that has been a bit sensitive in the book blogging sphere lately with her post about Kicking ARCs to the curb. This was 100% about her reading habits, though, and she made it clear she is not criticizing anyone else. Either way, this is a post I found interesting and relatable, and I'm sure others did as well. 

Carlisa at Confessions of Carlisa compiled a handy-dandy guide of bookish acronyms. This is good for people who are new in the book community, or for people who just have a hard time keeping up with all the random letters being thrown around. 

Here are some highlights from my instagram account this week. Give me a follow if you want to see everything I have posted/will post! 

As I mentioned earlier, I started a BookTube channel! I'll be (ideally) posting twice a week, on Mondays and Fridays. Make sure to subscribe to me if you want to stay updated on when and what I post! If you have a youtube channel, send me your link because I wanna see whatchya got! Here are my videos from this week!

What has your week in books and blogging looked like? 

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Lefty's Lowdown: Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
(Book #1)
Published: June 7, 2011 by Quirk
Source: Purchased
Summary from Goodreads:
A mysterious island. An abandoned orphanage. A strange collection of curious photographs.

A horrific family tragedy sets sixteen-year-old Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear that the children were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a deserted island for good reason. And somehow—impossible though it seems—they may still be alive.

A spine-tingling fantasy illustrated with haunting vintage photography, Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children will delight adults, teens, and anyone who relishes an adventure in the shadows.
 The second I saw the movie trailer for this book's adaptation, I knew I wanted to read it. If you follow me on Twitter, you probably have seen my struggle with this book. I finished the last page with very mixed feelings, and, even a week later, I'm still not entirely sure how I feel about this book, so this review is going to be a little bit different than my usual reviews.


+ The writing - I enjoyed the style, and I loved Jacob's voice.

+ The photos - If a book has mixed media, I instantly like it more. And these aren't just photos; they're creepy af photos. And probably my favorite part of this book!

+ The peculiarity - I really enjoyed reading about the side characters and what their peculiar trait was. Some of the traits were more common (invisibility, fire balls), but some were much more unique (controls bees, back mouth)! It was a lot of fun!

+ The second half - I became pretty damn hooked when Jacob started unraveling the truth about his grandfather's past, and the truth about the peculiar children, and the truth about himself. It became exciting and fast-paced! Not to mention there was a little twist that I hadn't seen coming (even though I probably should have).


- The first half - It was so hard to make it through the first half of this novel. While I thought the writing was good, it just didn't hook me in. It was slow and drawn out. I really think Ransom Riggs could have cut out a good chunk of the first half and got to the good stuff quicker.

- Lack of connection - I liked Jacob's character. He grew a lot over the course of the novel, and, like I said above, I loved his voice. However, I didn't really connect with him the way I would have liked to.

- The romance - It felt rushed and, yes, WEIRD. If it developed more slowly over the course of the series, I'd probably be a bit more into it, but it felt a little forced this early on. (But it wasn't insta-love or anything, I promise.)

- The world building - I'm still just a bit confused about it all? This is probably more my fault than the book's fault, I just didn't think some aspects of the world were explained sufficiently enough. Maybe I'll understand it more as I read the rest of the series.

As you can see, I'm pretty torn. There were some aspects I thought were great, and some that made it really hard to get through this book. It took me two weeks to read this book, and for a little while, I began to feel slumpy, and I debated DNFing. I'm glad I didn't DNF, though, because by the end of this novel, I was hooked enough to want to continue the series! And I am unbelievably stoked for the movie!
Actually 3.5/5

Monday, June 13, 2016

Unpopular Opinions | MY FIRST BOOKTUBE VIDEO

Hey everyone! I'm really excited to announce that I HAVE OFFICIALLY STARTED BOOKTUBING. I have been kinda obsessed with watching BookTube videos lately, and I've finally made my own. It's obviously not the best, but the longer I do this, the better I will get at it, and the more I will hit my stride.

I'd really love it if you'd check out my video--maybe give it a thumbs up or subscribe if you think I could be interesting to watch.

Okay,'s the video (in which I reveal my identity/face).

Please let me know what you think! If you have a BookTube channel, leave me the link, because I'd love to give it a gander. 

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Sunday Post #14

  • Hello everyone! I hope you're all doing wonderfully! This week has been a pretty dang good one (though a slow reading week).
  • On Monday I went swimming with my best friends and got a little sunburn, which doesn't sound like a good thing, but that's my first step to becoming not-a-pasty-white-ghost-look-alike, so I'm actually fairly happy about it. 
  • Thursday, I went with another friend to see Me Before You and HOLY COW. Not only did I think it was just a wonderful movie, but I sobbed like a lil baby. I know there is a bit of controversy floating around about this book/movie, but I really liked it, and I plan to buy and read the book this summer. 
  • The final highlight of my week is that I've gotten super into BookTube. I've been watching bookish videos into the wee hours of the night. I really want to start my own BookTube channel, but I'm still working out all the details. 
The Sound of Us by Julie Hammerle

Top Ten (5) Reasons I Love Book Blogging

Flashback Friday #5: Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen

Clearing My Shelves Giveaway #2
Twenty One Pilots Book Tag
Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard

Top Ten Most Anticipated Releases for the Second Half of the Year
Sunday Post #15

Would You Rather #3

What I've Learned From Bookstagram
 So, I ordered a bunch of books this week from, which is a new website I discovered for buying cheap books. Seriously, I bought 6 books for $22. Seriously, I recommend giving it a perusal. Anyway, they haven't come in yet, so all I got this week was:

Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard

I'm really excited to continue this story. This is definitely going to be my next read!

I also received for review:
Little Black Dresses, Little White Lies by Laura Stampler - Thanks to Simon Pulse for this eARC! This book will be released on July 19, 2016.

I have been really bad about reading other blogs this week, so I don't have any posts to go here :( I need to catch up on what other people are saying! If there are any posts you think I need to see this week, link 'em up in the comments!

Here are some highlights from my bookstagram account. You can follow me here if you want to keep up with everything I'm posting. 

What has your week in books and blogging looked like?