are you there spring? it’s me

I know I said see you next week in my post just yesterday, but here I am already, back again like a stuffy nose. In the movies, they always make being snowed in in the middle of a storm some big exciting, and usually romantic, adventure. Instead it’s Wednesday, I haven’t left my house in days, my car is surrounded in an inch of thick ice so and won’t open so I cannot leave, and I am running solely on coffee because I refuse to eat another chicken patty. The first day or so was nice. I got a lot of work done and was generally productive. Now I am pretty sure I am going crazy. The house is clean. My homework is done. My lessons are planned. I am so bored.

Being trapped in my house has gave me some reading time, which is really nice. I finished two books this week Wolfsong by TJ Klune and Turtles All the Way Down by John Green. I rated them both five stars because they are both extremely fantastic, although in very different ways.

Wolfsong was just, crazy good. I could not sleep until I finished this book. I could not eat, could not hold a conversation because I just needed to know what was going to happen. It was beautifully written, heart wrenching at times and hilarious at others. There were times where I just wanted to wrap Ox up and ensure that nothing bad ever happened to him ever again. So, I understood Joe’s desire to protect him even if I didn’t agree with how it all went down. Man. This was just a powerful book. It also featured one of my favorite tropes- found family. I cannot believe I have to wait until July to read the next one. Do yourself a favor and read this book!

Turtles All the Way Down is not your typical John Green novel. You can really see his growth as a writer in this book. It follows Aza, a girl who suffers from sometimes debilitating anxiety. The sections dealing with her anxiety are written really well. While Aza and I experience different types of intrusive thoughts, our spirals mirror each other and it was incredibly powerful to read about. This book was written beautifully. I had to stop every few pages just to highlight another sentence or two. (Sidenote: one of my favorite things about the kindle is that it groups all of your highlights together in a nifty little book automatically, which you can read at anytime.) I also liked how the romantic relationship was portrayed realistically and it did not overpower the main narrative.

I have downloaded a bunch of books to my kindle, so hopefully this craziness will continue to be somewhat fruitful. My goodreads is here, if you want to follow along.

Here’s hoping for some sunshine.


happy snow (ice storm?) day

I said last year that February felt like a placeholder month. That doesn’t quite appear to be true this year. This February has been so extremely busy and fast paced. (Thankfully. January took forever.) I haven’t had time, or the inclination honestly, to pick up a new book and read. I have been rereading all month. It’s a comfort thing and an energy thing and an interest thing. At the end of a long day, what’s more relaxing than reading something you’ve already read and loved? There’s no stress involved in that.

Back in December, I read the All For the Game series by Nora Sakavic and it changed my whole life. It has been extremely difficult to leave these characters for a moment and go read something else. So, I haven’t. I have been rereading, I have been lurking the fandom via tumblr and ao3, I have been writing and obsessing about these characters. It is such an intense world, everything else has been paling in comparison.

That does not mean my already massive TBR hasn’t been growing. It has. It now has 127 books on it. Made worse by the fact that I have not been reading and only adding. I need to go to the library and start knocking some of these books off. I have slowly but surely began obsessively organizing my life and time again though which means I will have time for reading and posting.

The trick to not getting overwhelmed, stressed, and anxious is to just… not make time for it in your day. I’m pretty sure that’s how it works, right? I will leave you with this: I hope the rest of this month is kind to you, void. I hope you get enough sleep or enough caffeine to fake it, or both. I hope that thing that is really stressing you becomes smaller, or you become bigger. I hope you remember to be mindful. I hope some good things happen to you and most importantly: I hope you are kind to yourself.

See you next week.

It’s flu season (tea, please)

Happy Friday, void. I hope this week has been treating you well. I am writing from my couch, where I have been all day because I have the freaking flu. I genuinely hate being sick. One reason is because I hate not feeling in control of my body. Another reason (and probably the biggest) is that being sick is a lonely business. I hate who I am when I am sick. I turn into this whiny, need person who cries in the car when she has to get her own orange juice. I can’t help it. I don’t know why I am the way that I am. Also, while you’re busy being sick everyone else in your life is busy with life and being able to breathe through their nose. It just feels incredibly disconnected, especially when it hurts to look at screens for any period of time.

Getting sick is just par for the course, though. If you didn’t know, I am a kinder teacher which means that I am essentially surrounded by germs at all times of the day. Hopefully I am able to kick this flu soon because I already have so much homework to do.

That’s right! My college classes have started up again as well. If you’re thinking this is the worst possible time to get sick, well you would be correct. I really like all of my classes thus far. I am taking a couple education classes, a mythos class, and a history/literature class. I am only taking one class on campus, the rest are online. I designed it this way so that I could work more! It’s also really convenient because I have a crap load of classroom observations to do, so my schedule is a lot more open.

Reading this week has been blah because I’ve been busy, sick, and busy being sick. My waning mental health hasn’t helped either. I did manage to get to three books, though!

First up, I read Tigers and Devils by Sean Kennedy. I gave it three stars. It was okay. It’s the first of a series but I have no intent to finish reading them. I really loved some parts of this book and really hated others. I really only finished because it was such a short read.

Next I read Love Her Wild by Atticus which I gave 2 stars to and eventually DNF’d it. It didn’t really seem to have any sustenance or new ideas to it whatsoever ever. It was like scrolling through someone’s quote blog.

I finished up this week with A Royal Affair by John Wiltshire. I gave it two stars. It’s part of a duology which I will not finish. Ohhhh boy, this book. This is another one that I thought was just okay. This book has such potential, I was really excited to read it. When I finished I just felt blah about it. It felt slow sometimes and rushed others. I really hated the ending. I think the romance could have been flushed out better. I wish there was more than one female character. I wish characters had motivations that really felt genuine. This book left a lot to be desired.

As for next week, I don’t have any concrete reading plans! Will I finally (FINALLY) get to Release by Patrick Ness? Will I go to the library and tackle my growing TBR? What will be the next book to make me cry? Will I even survive the weekend? Who knows!

As always, thank you for listening, void. See ya next week. xx

Weekly Wrap-up

Happy Saturday, void. I hope this week has been kind to you. Last time I wrote I told you I wanted to reread the Captive Prince series and that I wanted to finally (FINALLY) get to John Boyne’s latest novel. I have done both of these things! Let’s get into thoughts.

I wanted to reread Captive Prince because I couldn’t really remember what happened in the series and it is faced a lot of controversy in the bookish community. The first time I read the series, it took forever because I repeatedly put the first book down because I couldn’t get through it. It seemed weird and gross and not at all what I was expecting. I did eventually read all three.

After rereading last weekend, I can definitely understand how people could find issue with it but I, personally, did not. I do think that the second and third books are much better in comparison to the first, as they don’t feature the so prominently the heavy issues of the first. I read all three books in one day. It was a really quick read. Overall, I thought they were okay. Well written, developed characters, interesting plot.

The last book I read this week was The Heart’s Invisible Furies by John Boyne. I finished this book three days ago and I am still struggling to describe how I felt about it. It was amazing. It was enthralling. At times funny, at times heartbreaking. There were times I literally had to walk away from the book, it was so heart clenching.

The book follows the life of an Irish man Cyril Avery as he navigates family, love, and truth. This book was so well written. These characters felt so real to me, their lives so real. Don’t let the size of it intimidate you, it really is such an intense, fast paced read. I rated it 5/5 stars. If you’re looking for a good fiction read to start your year off right, I highly suggest this book. It will make you feel so many things. Wonderful wonderful wonderful.

And that’s it for my reading this week! While my TBR is pretty lengthy, nothing is quite popping out at me so I’m not sure what this next week’s reading will look like. What is your reading looking like so far? If you’ve read Captive Prince, what are your thoughts? Lemme know down below.

Stay warm out here, void. Talk soon.

Book review + weekly wrap up

Just about one week done in the new year. I hope it’s been treating you well, void. Last night I finished my first book of the year, We’re Going to Need More Wine by Gabrielle Union. It is a collection of essays that detail certain parts of her life. Even though I normally don’t read non-fiction, I was really excited because I love Gabrielle Union. I have loved her as long as I can possibly remember. She’s an amazing actress, she’s funny, she’s socially aware, she’s an activist, and she’s absolutely beautiful.

Her book did not disappoint. I laughed at some parts and I cried at others. There is a part where she talks about the aftermath of her sexual assault that really just resonated with me. She talks about having to face the door whenever she goes out to eat, still, and that awareness is something I still struggle with today. I loved that she was honest and bare bones about her life and her struggles. I know for a fact that this book will sit with me for a while. I’m so glad it was the first book that I read this year. It feels like a good omen. If you haven’t picked it up yet, I encourage you to do so! It is an excellent, quick read.

On to my weekend reads. In very me fashion, I’m ignoring my very long TBR and am instead reading something I’ve already read. I am a serial rereader. It’s a thing. I’m currently rereading the Captive Prince series by C.S. Pacat. I finished it two years ago, I believe, but I wanted to revisit it because there’s a lot of controversy around it and it’s changed my opinion of the series. I want to give it another go, because I can’t really remember what happens and I can’t really remember if I liked it or not.

Once I finish with that series, I really want to get to The Heart’s Invisible Furies by John Boyne. I picked this book up a few months ago through Book of the Month but I just haven’t got around to it even though I am really excited to. I have heard lots of good things about it and I really loved his last novel. Also I just found out that Madeline Miller has a new book coming out and I am so freaking geeked. Miller wrote my second favorite book of all time, The Song of Achilles. I am ready to see whatever she does next. It is another mythos book, which I love, so I’m looking forward to it.

I think that’s it for this week. What have you read or are reading this first week of the new year? What are you excited to read? Let me know in the comments. As always, my goodreads is here. Have a great weekend, void.

New Year, Same Me?

Happy New Year to you and yours, void. The end of the year always feels so exhausting, like the end of a shift at a dead end job and you’re ready to just clock out and go home and move on to something better. Or something like that. Do holidays make any of you maudlin? I don’t know what it is about that space between Christmas and New Year that makes it seem so unreal, but that’s where I am right now.

I am lucky enough to be already working as an educator while in school which means for two weeks I don’t have a single thing to do. It was amazing for like, three days. Now I need Structure. I need something to do, something to focus on. On that same note however, I refuse to do any lesson planning. My brain needs a break.

When I started this blog earlier last year (or late the year before who knows), wild transition I know, I just wanted a place to write about books. I had fell off the reading train and wanted to get back on, and this seemed like a good place to track myself and a place to word vomit about all the books that I liked. And execution aside, I still like that idea. I just got busy. I started working three jobs, and then I went back to school on top of it all, and my reading slowed down tremendously. In Janaury of this year, I read around 25 books. In this month of December, I’ve read seven. I just do not have the time. One of my goals on the new year is to make the time. My reading goal this year is 45 books again. My blogging goal is to write a review for all the ones I rate 4 stars and up.

This New Year around I don’t plan on making any resolutions, per say. I had a really good 2017. I did everything I set out to do. I want to keep that same energy and growth for 2018.

So! I hope you stick around. This year is going to be good. My first review of the year is going to be “We’re Gonna Need More Wine” by Gabrielle Union. I had been wanting it and I got it for Christmas and so far so good! It’ll be up within the week. I want to put out at least one post every week, about whatever. I hope you guys can help keep me honest.

How were your holidays? Did you do anything fun for the new year? Wishing you all a great new year, void.

Favorite Books of 2017

Hello, again! Yeah. I am just as surprised to be back and posting again, but here we are. I’ll be rolling out a post about how absolutely crazy the last half of the year was. It’s the end of the year and according to my Goodreads, I have read 95 books which is a feat considering my goal was only 45 books.

My main goal this year was to get back into reading actual books. The last couple of years I mostly read unpublished novels and fan works, and so I missed a lot of really good books and I wanted to dive back in. And dive in, I did. I read so many interesting and well developed characters and plots and worlds this year, and it has been incredibly immersive. I learned a lot about myself through what I was reading, like what I actually like to read. My goal for the next year is much of the same: read for the enjoyment of reading.

Here is a list of books I absolutely adored. Some of them you will recognize from reviews I did in the first half of the year and some will be new. They are listed in no particular order. In bold will be my top five favorite (published) books of the year, also in no order. Let me know in the comments if you want me to do a more in depth review on any of these. I would be happy to! Without further ado, let’s jump in. My favorite books of 2017 are:

  • Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
  • We Are the Ants by Shaun David Hutchinson
  • Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward
  • Missing You, Metropolis by Gary Jackson
  • The All For the Game series by Nora Sakavic 
  • At the Edge of the Universe by Shaun David Hutchinson
  • The Inexplicable Logic of My Life by Benjamin Alire Saenz
  • Allegedly by Tiffany D. Jackson 
  • A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness
  • The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
  • Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews
  • What Lies Between Us by Nayomi Munaweera
  • I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson 

And that’s it folks! Be on the look out for my next post if you want to know where I disappeared to and why I am back. It should roll out before the new year. I may also be putting out a list of my favorite spoken word from this year as well. My Goodreads is here, if you want to be friends.

I hope you all had a lovely and productive 2017. What were some of your favorite, and least favorite, books you read this year?