It’s Been A While….

I can’t even say when I posted last….May…? June….? longer? A lot has happened, but that isn’t really why I have neglected this blog.

I just felt like I was doing the same thing over and over and over again, and repetition gets to me after a while. I am not sure if the whole blog thing is for me, as I don’t live a very exciting life, and I don’t really like the reviewing thing.

I feel like you can only talk about your bookshelves so many times, and if you want progress on books, why not just go to Goodreads?

SO! lets talk about what has been going on.

I was in a very unhappy living situation for almost a year, It seemed that every passing day added to the depression that I have lived with for a long time. I can’t do the meds, they make me feel worse. I just need to stay in a semi-positive environment, which that was not. SO! back in June, that whole 30 days ago….well, a little more….I was finally done. I had reached my breaking point, so I packed myself, and my son up, and went to my mothers. I spent the afternoons with my husband, but other than that, I was with my mom, surrounded by her daycare kids [which consist of my 3 nephews and 1 niece]. My son got to visit with children finally, as unless I see my siblings or go to my moms during the day, his life basically consists of me, his daddy and his grandparents [on his dads side]. You know, I should have been really upset that I was basically homeless, and that my son was basically homeless, but! for the first time in months I felt freaking relieved. I had NO idea what we as a family would do from there, but I knew I was free from that incredibly negative situation, so I was happy. Since we hadn’t really time to plan anything, as we had actually planned on leaving a month or two later than I did…..I was at my moms for a bit until we were able to find a place.

I AM REFERRING TO JUNE 23 as my Sunday miracle. I had looked at a few places online, and we had a few appointments lined up to see some of those places, so, I shouldn’t have had to look, but Sunday morning, I woke up early, before L, and I just happened to jump online while I was waiting for my coffee to brew, and right at the freaking top… “PRICE REDUCED” 2 bedroom with a garage…. NOT an apartment building, not some small little place, BUT A TOWNHOUSE. a very nice townhouse, with an incredibly affordable price tag…..so I immediately texted the info to my husband, who called them right away. We still went and saw the place we had an appointment for that day, WHICH FUNNY THING, was on the OTHER side of the Cul de sac from the place I had found that morning….it wasn’t bad, but I didn’t see myself living there long term. It was small, no place for storage, no garage [even though there WAS one, the owner just wasn’t renting out the garages with the apartments….which was lame, and a deal breaker…], SO! we had hours to kill before our other showing, but just as we were leaving they had texted Nic saying YOU CAN COME NOW! so, we hopped in the car and went that whole….10 hours down, haha, and we get there…. AND IT IS NOT THE SAME APARTMENT THAT WAS ADVERTISED….. It was FREAKING BETTER. So the layout of this building….the 4 garages are in the front, there are 2 entrances on either side. Units 1 and 3 are end units that are located in the back with 2 levels. Units 2 and 4 are in the front on top of the garages. We originally went to look at Unit 2, but were shown Unit 1…..I thought the price would go up, I didn’t think it was going to work, BUT EVERYTHING WAS THE SAME, except we got a two level townhouse that had a half bath that the upstairs front unit didn’t have. SO! We jumped on it immediately, and 2 days later we were moving in.

I can’t say my depression has totally dissipated from what it has been the last few months, but I am getting better. Being on our own again, finally, after such a long time has been wonderful, and it is really nice for our son who basically has the whole downstairs to explore [except the bathroom and laundry room, of course]. He is going to be 1 here, in less than a month, and it has been so amazing watching him grow. He is definitely a happy child, with a huge personality. He learns new things every day, and I am really happy that he has a true home again.

 

THAT situation is not why I haven’t been posting, per se…well, maybe the depression thing, but I am, in general….kind of over the social media thing. I’ve strongly considered just being done with Instagram. I am pretty much done with Goodreads, as I’ve only been using it to keep track of books instead of being active and talking to people. I feel like Bookstagram is more of a place for people to hate on people, and be assholes, and to voice their NON BOOKISH opinions and then go on rants because people shut them down, or other people jump on board and it creates even more negativity. It was fun at first, but now I am not really liking it…WHICH IS A SHAME, because my husband knows I’ve been wanting to move to an indoor theme, so he purchased some really awesome lighting for me as an early anniversary/birthday present. The atmosphere just seems tainted somehow. It was so fun at first, everyone coming together no matter what genre or subject matter of book they were reading, and now we have people bullying others because they want to read a book to form their own opinion, when the bullies themselves take opinions of others and over exaggerate content matter. I feel like everything is about diversity. If you read books with white straight ablebodied people you’re the worst person in the world. If these authors TRY to be diverse, they aren’t doing it “well enough” so people tear them, and the readers down….etc, etc, etc….

There is just way too much drama….I pick up a book, and read…..if it is entertaining to me, I read it. If it is boring, I don’t read it. I don’t care if the characters are white, yellow, brown, black, purple, straight, gay, or any number of the other orientations there are, if I don’t like the writing, I am not going to like it. I think people spend way too much time concentrating on the tiny little details that they hate anything they pick up. I don’t think people should judge, or be judged for the books they read. It reminds me of all the “girl on girl hate”….that person finds enjoyment in reading, just as much as you do….so just let them read what makes them happy, and you do the same thing.

I don’t even know where that rant came from. It is late, I am tired….and I guess my lack of recent posts has made me miss writing, haha [but not enough to make this an every day thing again].

What bookish thoughts do I have……

I have reached my Goodreads reading goal of 65 books in 2017, and have surpassed it. I am currently reading books 71 & 72 of the year. One of which is my challenge 10 pick for the tackleyourlibrarychallenge17 reading challenge. I feel like I am the only one actually taking part in it, but since I did it for just Lauren and I, and THEN decided to make it a public thing, I am not too worried. It has helped me tremendously, and I can’t wait to make one for 2018.

I’ve spent the last 3 days cleaning and organizing my goodreads shelves. In my “want to read-to be bought” shelf, I went from somewhere around 400 to just under 90. Books I’d either bought since I’d organized last, found for free, borrowed, or simply just didn’t want to read anymore. Today, I started with my Amazon wishlists. Most of the books on Goodreads made their way to “wishlists” on Amazon over the years, so that I could keep track of prices for kindle books….Honestly though? I don’t even know why I ever put a good 2/3 books on there, because they did not sound at all interesting to me….so I’ve lowered those lists a lot too.

Wellllll, I am getting kind of bored writing, so I think I will end this and go back to my movie before heading off to bed.

~A

 

Remember It’s Only a Game

5/5

“Whatever you’ve heard about Caraval, it doesn’t compare to the reality. It’s more than just a game or performance. It’s the closest you’ll ever find yourself to magic in this world.”

This book was on my radar for several months before it’s release; I mean, after reading Night Circus, I absolutely adored the whole concept of these magical circuses/ performances. When I saw that Owlcrate’s theme was “Night at the Circus” right around this book’s release, I knew that this was the book that would be included and it killed me waiting to buy the book from stores. And now, after finally reading the book, I’m kicking myself for not having read it sooner.

I fell in love with this book pretty much from day one when I read the premise, and I definitely was not disappointed when actually reading the book. Talk about some amazing world-building! It was even more incredible than I could have ever hoped for it to be.

“Hope is a powerful thing. Some say it’s a different breed of magic altogether. Elusive, difficult to hold onto. But not much is needed.”

Without giving too much away, I will say that I loved all the characters. I loved the storyline. I loved the twists. I loved the world. I. Loved. Caraval.

I’m not sure that I can ever recall a time that I read a book with as many unexpected twists as this book. I know the whole tag line, “Remember it’s only a game” and Scarlett being told constantly to not believe anything that she sees or hears as truth, I should’ve expected more than I did; but no matter how much I guessed at, there was always something new right around the corner. It definitely held my interest and left me guessing at what certain things could possibly mean- like those damn clues! Every single time I thought I’d figured something out, a new twist came about or something big arose that made you realize you were wrong the whole time. After finishing, I realized something that left me both endlessly pleased and frustrated: the whole book was written with the intent of subtly misdirecting the audience… just like a real magic show.

Pretty sure that this book is, and will remain, among one of my top reads for the whole year. If you’re on the fence about reading this book at all, give it a shot. It’s definitely worth the read.

Waiting for the next book to come out is going to be a whole new breed of torture. With that damn cliffhanger ending, I’m sure I’m not the only one chomping at the bit for the sequel.

“Some things are worth persuit regardless of the cost.”

_______

-Lauren

Currently Reading:

-Dream a Little Dream (Kerstin Geir): page 40

-Novice (BR with boyfriend): page 104

Curses, Swords, and Magic, Oh My!


5/5! Loved this.

 “…your greatest enemy isn’t what you fight but what you fear.” 

In all honesty, I bought this duology out of order and without having the tiniest clue what they were about. I’ve had them just sitting on my shelf for at least a year now- this seems to be a common occurrence for me. Though, I know I’m not alone in that problem. In fact, as many of you know, Ash and I even created a whole reading challenge for the year in order to tackle some of the ones we’ve got. 

Definitely glad to have finally picked this one up!! I absolutely loved this book from start to finish. I’ve always been a sucker for things that involve witch hunting (such a horribly tragic time in human history) and when one like this includes actual witchcraft and an interesting take on Magic and everything that goes along with it, I can’t help but love it. Ugh.

The storyline was super unique but very easy to follow, though not without its twists. And the book as a whole flowed so seamlessly. I was hooked while reading this entire book- there was so much depth to all aspects of the storyline and the characters. 
I loved watching Elizabeth develop as a character throughout this book. Her growth was amazing and seeing how she worked through her fear(s) was such an incredible thing to witness. Such a good book!
_______

Lauren 

It’s the End(game) of the World as we know it.


5/5

First of all, a big thank you to my lovely boyfriend Matt for picking this book out and for being willing to read it with me. Being able to hear your thoughts as you read, seeing who you liked first hand as I formed my own opinions and finishing the book within ten minutes of you just proves all over again that I’m lucky to have found you. Thank you for being willing to put up with my craziness and doing a buddy read with me. (:

REVIEW TIME! 

“This is Endgame, bitch. Best get used to it.” 

Oh, man. I thoroughly enjoyed this one. Despite there being periods of time I didn’t touch it at all, picking it back up I was always thoroughly immersed in the story and the characters and everything else that was going on. This one hooked me from the first page and kept me hooked until the very end. 

Given the premise and everything, I definitely anticipated enjoying this book, but I didn’t realize how much I would enjoy it. 

One qualm I’d have, given the premise, is that there really wasn’t enough death. Albeit, the deaths that did occur were quite brutal and I felt like that was true to the aim of the book, but I’m anticipating a lot more death in the future books or I’ll be quite sad…. sounds weird, I know. But it’s a book about the impending doom of the planet and I can count the number of deaths we witnessed on one hand- aside from one exception. 

I don’t want to give too much away because this book was like a puzzle at times and I loved being fed little bits of information at a time. It really did make me want to continue reading. I absolutely cannot wait to pick the next book in this series up!!

__________

-Lauren

Currently Reading:

-The Witch Hunter (just starting)

-Island of Exiles (just starting)

Make it Worth the Pain


5/5 

Okay, first of all, I really need to kick the habit of waiting ages to actually finish a book like this just because I’m sad that the series is ending or that I’ll have to wait for the next one. Gahhh
I’m so sad that this duology is finished already, I absolutely loved this world and the characters and the monsters and everything else.
I would have LOVED to see more of what happened in the other cities- I want to know what became of everything in Prosperity and I’m kinda keeping my fingers crossed now that there will be a spinoff or something. 
August is one of those characters that you just feel for page after page after page. I love that kid so much and my heart breaks for him in so many ways. I don’t think I’ve ever sympathized for a character so much. Especially when I sit and actually reflect on everything that’s happened. Ughh 
Finishing this only further solidified my previous statement: I will read everything this woman writes. She’s a phenomenal writer with a solid knack for world building. 
This duology will always come highly recommended by me- so if you’re looking for a good read, check these books out!
This book left me a mess last night when I finished though, I couldn’t bring myself to leave a review right away. I cried way too much.
Thank you, Schwab for ripping my heart out yet again. Ughhh

___________________

-Lauren 

Currently Reading: 

-My Lady Jane (page 67)

-Endgame (page 203)

We Each Have a Song


5/5. Hands down.

Yup, it’s official. I will read anything and everything this woman writes.
I don’t know why it’s taken me so long to read any of Schwab’s books, but after reading A Darker Shade of Magic and having this stare at me from my shelf I finally picked it up. So. Damn. Good.


Yet again, Schwab created this amazingly in-depth world without it being a major info dump like so many books seem to be. She gives you bits and pieces of characters and the world and the lore and it’s so freaking cool. You don’t feel overwhelmed, you get excited whenever you learn something, and it gets you hooked to want to just KEEP READING.


The couple times I actually had an hour or so to spare and sat down I flew through a couple hundred pages and I was constantly thinking about this book when I wasn’t reading.


The world is so freaking cool. I love all the different dystopian type worlds out there, but the monsters that rule this one- both human and other- are so well thought out and so intricate. Aghhhh. 
The twists were perfect in this book. Subtle enough to not be catastrophic but big enough to move the plot forward. I’m so excited to see what’s in store!
I literally told my boyfriend before I was even halfway done that as soon as I finished this I needed to go get the next one. I’m dying. I need more!!

__________

-Lauren

Currently Reading:

-Endgame- page 204

-Flashfall- page 100

-Strange the Dreamer

Parabatai

What better book to finish on National Best Friend’s Day than this one?

Solid 5/5 for me on this book, for sure.

Guys. I’m not gonna lie, I just finished this book and I’m kind of a wreck at the moment. People kept telling me the ending would get me but I can tell you I honestly did not see that coming. I mean… whyyyyy?!

I don’t want to give anything away, but I love that this book really did pick up right where the previous one left off. We’re given much back story to certain characters and events and we get to see more of some previous characters as well.

Clare really stepped up her game with this one and set things up so nicely for the final installment and I absolutely cannot wait (even though we’ve got a two year wait until that one). 

I love Julian and Emma. So freaking much. I love the Blackthorns with all my heart and my heart breaks for Julian really never having the chance to be a kid. He’s strong and resilient and a damn good person though, I’ll give him that. His loyalty to his family is immeasurable.

I stretched this book out for a ridiculous amount of time and I’m so sad that it’s over now. Can’t wait to enter the world again though, and a reread is definitely in store.

________________

Lauren 

Currently Reading: 

*Flashfall

*Endgame