3 Bookish Things Tag

Hey, everyone! Aah, I’m finally getting through all the tags that I was tagged for, which feels pretty nice! I was tagged for this one by Madeline @The Bookish Mutant quite a while ago, and it looks like a very unique tag!

3 Read-Once-And-Loved Authors

  • Darcie Little Badger is definitely one of these. I enjoyed her first book, Elatsoe, maybe not as much as I enjoyed other books, but it was definitely a fun read. But then once I read her second book, A Snake Falls to Earth, I now LOVE her.
  • Margaret Owen. I’m like a one-person hype train for Owen. I loved The Merciful Crow as soon as I read it, and she just has the best story ideas and you all REALLY NEED TO READ HER BOOKS.
  • Rosiee Thor is just such a great author, her first book Tarnished Are the Stars is super unique and I’ve also talked to her and she’s just such a great person! I’m super excited for her next book.

3 Titles I’ve Watched but not Read

I do not watch a lot of books that I have not read. I would definitely say Lord of the Rings for this one; I read the first one and a half books of LOTR, but never finished it, but I watched all three movies. Do…Marvel movies count? I mean, I haven’t read any of the Marvel comics, but I’m slowly getting into the Marvel movies, so I guess I’m counting those. As for a third, I honestly cannot think of anything at the moment.

3 Series I Have Binged

I don’t read many serieses very fast, first of all because usually I read newer releases, which means that their sequels aren’t out yet, and also because it’s actually fairly hard to get me into a series. I’m learning that I do enjoy standalones more than anything. But I will say, I read Raybearer and its sequel pretty much back to back. I also read Six of Crows and Crooked Kingdom very close together (really, who didn’t? Once you got into SoC, you had to read CK). And once again, I cannot think of a third book series that I binged.

3 Characters I Love

  • Nina from A Snake Falls to Earth. Ah, as you can tell, I REALLY enjoyed this book. And even though I feel like the book mostly follows Oli (and he was a total bean), it was really Nina who I liked most of all.
  • Aideen from Not My Problem. Okay, this book was 100% the funniest book I have ever read, and it was definitely because of Aideen.
  • Okay, Jesper is kinda a classic, but I love Jesper. I don’t know, he’s just funny but also really cool and…I don’t know, okay? We love Jesper. He’s great.

3 Current Favorite Colors

Well, okay. So, honestly my favorite color is probably orange. Like, a bright color orange, it’s really pretty. But also, I really like a lot of blues and blue-greens. Not with orange, obviously (I don’t like orange and blue together), but blue is just really pretty. And then of course there’s black, because I don’t know. Black goes with everything and it’s just a very nice color.

3 Things You Have Used as Bookmarks

So, I’m actually not going to answer this question, because I have a whole list of weird things that my family and I have used for bookmarks, and I want to do a whole separate post on it because I thought it would be a bit of a fun thing for a post. That one’s coming soon, I promise!

3 Unpopular Bookish Opinions

As soon as I am asked, all opinions about everything leave my mind. Okay, this isn’t exactly a bookish opinion, but it is one related to writing. It’s an opinion I am always very very scared to say, because I know there’s gonna be backlash, but here goes…I don’t always use the Oxford comma. Basically, my second grade teacher was the first one to really address the comma before the ‘and’ thing and she told me it wasn’t necessary, so that just stuck with me. I’m actually beginning to use it much more now (peer pressure? who knows) and I ALWAYS use it when it’s necessary. Like, I believe that it should be used, and I do use it, but not always.
Anyways, I guess the other two bookish opinions that are probably unpopular are that I don’t really like the friends-to-lovers trope. Also, I don’t get the big deal about Kaz Brekker. He’s cool I guess, but he’s probably one of my least favorite of the Crows. Everyone’s obsessed with him and I’m not totally sure why.

3 Book Goals for the Year

Okay, so I already published a post about bookish goals for this year, way back in the beginning of January, which you can find here. But a few of the goals from that post are to keep better track of my reads (so far, so good!), to not feel forced to write reviews (I wrote a discussion post about this earlier this year, you can find it here), and to DNF more books, which I honestly don’t think is going to happen because apparently I’m just terrible at DNFing and really only do it when I’m in a huge book slump or if I am REALLY bored by a book. Even if I hate it, I’ll keep reading it.

I tag:

What are some authors that you love? Do you binge book serieses? And what are some unpopular bookish opinions that YOU have?

February Wrap Up

I really wanted to write an intro to this post that did NOT talk about how fast time has gone, but I then spent a good five minutes (it was more like half a minute, but it felt like five) thinking of what I could start this post by saying, and having not thought of anything, you get this. I successfully avoided talking about the speed of time! Kind of!

  • Ophie’s Ghosts by Justina Ireland. I picked this one up on a whim, and it was a quick middle grade read. It’s interesting to read a middle grade that’s set in the earlier 1900s and I like how the author incorporated that in there. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley. This book was very good for the first 100 and last 100 pages. It kept me reading and I really enjoyed the awareness that it spread. I did feel like the middle dragged considerably, however. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Thornhill by Pam Smy. This book was half told in drawings, half in diary entries, and it was a fascinating concept, but I did not end up enjoying it much. It was a dark story, and it had an inconclusive and sad ending. ⭐⭐
  • Light from Uncommon Stars by Ryka Aoki. This was such a nice story, with found family and also lots of violins. I am definitely nowhere near as good at violin as two of the main characters of this story (nor do I wish to be) but it was still cool to see all the violin terms and techniques. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • White Smoke by Tiffany Jackson. Shockingly enough, this was my first book by Tiffany Jackson??? It was also horror, which I don’t read much, but I found this to be a really gripping and enjoyable book. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Gender Queer by Maia Kobabe. This book was a memoir in graphic novel form, and it was really interesting to see Maia’s journey to figuring out eir sexuality and gender. [no rating]
  • Fire Becomes Her by Rosiee Thor. FBH was my most anticipated release of 2022, and I have to say, it was not what I expected. There were a lot of politics and just talking, but I did really enjoy the worldbuilding and!!! the!!! aroace spec!!! rep!!! ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • A Season of Daring Greatly by Ellen Emerson White. Woman playing professional baseball. Do I need to say anything else? This book was great for anyone who loves baseball, it’s a fiction story about a girl who becomes the first woman in professional baseball. You do have to love baseball to read it though, because there’s a lot of baseball game scenes. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Love and Other Natural Disasters by Misa Sugiura. At the time that I read this, it was just what I needed, a nice realistic fiction that I just enjoyed all the way through. This one also has the fake dating trope which has been coming out more and more and is always so fun. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • The Keeper of the Night by Kylie Lee Baker. This was a super unique story and was really fun to read. I loved a lot of the characters as well as the story itself, but I do think that the pacing was off at the ending and that the ending overall could have been better. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • A Darker Shade of Magic by VE Schwab. Given the popularity of this book, I cannot believe that I haven’t picked it up until now. That being said, I found it to be an awesome world and an altogether enjoyable book. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • These Feathered Flames by Alexandra Overy. Magical politics was most of this book. Still, I felt like it picked up a lot near the end and really interested me; I just wish there were more plots before then. ⭐⭐⭐⭐

I posted four times this month and I’m very happy about this! And I mention it at least once more in this post because I’m going to keep talking about it! I have a good posting schedule! Anyways, these were all really fun posts and I hope that you enjoyed them too!

The Best Books of 2021 Tag
The Book Blogging Pressure to Review Books
The Evermore Book Tag
4 Awesome, Underhyped Authors

February Goals:

  • Keep up with my posting! ✅
  • Drink. Water.

I was able to keep up with my posting schedule, in which I posted once each week, every Sunday, and I’m really happy about this because I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to keep going with this due to school!

  • Keep up with posting schedule (yes I will just keep writing this goal)
  • Organize my goodreads shelves
  • Do a little blog editing

I started to do a few things with blog editing and goodreads shelves and I hope to continue doing so when I have time!

If I’m being honest, nothing much really happened in February. We had a week long break from school, and my family went on a vacation to a farm, where we got to meet some animals, which was a very nice break from school.
Valentine’s Day also happens in February, and there’s a bunch of ways to sort of show your appreciation for your friends (and I suppose romantic partners if you have them) at my school on Valentine’s Day. The biggest way is that there’s a way to send carnations to people, so I ended up with a bunch of carnations, and it’s really just a fun day to see all the carnations and trade treats with people and just have fun!
The other thing that happens in February is aromantic awareness week! Aro awareness week starts the Sunday after Valentine’s Day (I think) and I’m a little sad that I didn’t get any posts out about aro rep or anything of the sort during this week, but I did just want to let everyone know about this! If you’ve seen any great posts about aro rep or anything of the sort, please let me know in the comments because I would love to read them, and you can also look back at my own post that I published last pride month about why aroace spec rep is so important in books!
Oh yeah the other thing that happened this month was that I DNFed a book haha. Not a super huge achievement, but I find it very hard to leave books half read, even if I’m not enjoying them, so the fact that I was able to step away from this book that was boring me was good for me. Now I will just live with the knowledge that I am probably missing an extremely interesting plot in the last half of the book.

What did you read this month? Were there any posts that you enjoyed? What are some of your goals for March?

4 Awesome, Underhyped Authors

Hey everyone! Today I wanted to write a really simple post, but one that I’m also very excited for. There are a lot of authors out there whose books get insanely hyped up, whose new releases are anticipated by what seems like everyone, and those books are awesome, and absolutely rightfully hyped and anticipated. But there’s also several authors whose books I have loved, but who I really don’t see read around the blogosphere or on goodreads. So, today I wanted to bring some awareness to these authors and their books, since they’re totally awesome and you should definitely read them!

As it turns out, you probably actually have heard of most, if not all, of these authors, simply because I love their books and hype them on my blog a lot. But I still wanted to take the time to write an entire post dedicated to them, because they deserve it and I wanted my time to sing their praises again.
Also, I will only be including authors who have published at least two books (and I have read at least two books by these authors, as well) given that debut novels sometimes are not as hyped as other books just because people don’t know of the author as well. So, these are authors who’ve gone through a debut novel and then another book and I still want to talk about them.

Buttons lead to goodreads pages for each book.

Rosiee Thor

Rosiee Thor’s second book, Fire Becomes Her, just came out on February first. I did see some hype for this book, but definitely not as much as I would have hoped. Rosiee’s first book, Tarnished are the Stars, was published in 2019 and it is a really unique science fiction book. Meanwhile, Fire Becomes Her is a fantasy with amazing worldbuilding. I think that the worldbuilding in Rosiee’s books is really what shines through, with a unique world forming the setting of Tarnished as well. Rosiee’s books also highlight aroace characters and characters on the aroace spectrum, which is always a win for me, and Tarnished are the Stars is actually very important to me because that was the book where I first learned of the terms aromantic and asexual. Not only are their books great, but Rosiee Thor themself is a really great person, who has an awesome personality and is definitely the nicest author who I, myself, have talked to. I wrote a book review of Tarnished are the Stars a very long time ago, and also interviewed Rosiee Thor about it, and you can check out the review here and the interview here, but please keep in mind that this was my very first book review on my blog 🙂 (by which I mean, it might be bad). And look out for another interview with Rosiee coming very soon!

Darcie Little Badger

Darcie Little Badger is a Lipan Apache author with two published books, both of which are magical realism. Darcie’s first book, Elatsoe, was published in 2020, and her second book, A Snake Falls to Earth came the next year in 2021. Both her books center around Lipan Apache main characters, and draw on Lipan Apache legends and stories. Darcie’s writing style is awesome as well! Another thing that was great about Elatsoe and A Snake Falls to Earth is that they’re not super fast books, but in a great way. There’s not a whole lot of action, but they both feel like they’re more an exploration of the world, and of the characters, especially A Snake Falls to Earth. Definitely do not go into these books expecting a fast paced adventure, but just let yourself get pulled along with the story and the characters!
Plus, and I always have to bring this up, the main characters in both Darcie’s books are asexual, as is she, and it’s some great casual ace rep – it’s mentioned on page both times, but it’s never made a big deal of; it’s just there!

Margaret Owen

Margaret Owen may be my favorite fantasy author, which is saying quite a bit. The first thing you have to notice when you read her books is just the worldbuilding. Her Merciful Crow duology as well as her newest book, Little Thieves are both set in fantasy worlds, and they’re honestly just like any other high fantasy worlds, but there’s something about the way that they’re written that’s just so great. And Margaret Owen’s books are just pure high fantasy which is absolutely something that I need every once in a while. There’s a lot of different types of fantasy books and worlds, and so many of them are great, but there’s just something about high fantasy that makes it so awesome to come back to once in a while.
The characters in Margaret’s books are also amazing, and they always end up coming together in the best way. Plus, her plots are sure to keep you hooked with their really unique stories that still manage to follow the high fantasy sort of plot structure feel! If you’re looking for a good fantasy, I would definitely recommend these books, and I will keep on recommending them until you read them (and maybe after, as well).

Justina Ireland

Justina Ireland is an author that I actually have not talked about as much on my blog, and I have no idea why! I’ve very rarely seen her book Dread Nation anywhere in the bookish community and this is a true oversight on all of your parts and I demand you fix it immediately. Dread Nation is a super unique book, set in an alternate timeline where zombies arose from the battlefields in America’s Civil War. I have honestly never read a book like this, and it may sound weird, but I promise you, it’s NOT. Both Dread Nation and it’s sequel kept me super hooked. The books also addressed some of the racial tensions of the time, and both of the main characters are black and queer (aroace rep!!!). dread Nation is NOT the only book that Justina Ireland has written, it’s simply my favorite of hers. She’s written quite a few books, but the only one that I have read other than this duology is her middle grade, Ophie’s Ghosts. I don’t delve into middle grade too much anymore because I’m not at that age range and it can affect my ability to enjoy a book, so while I definitely didn’t enjoy Ophie’s Ghosts as much as I did Dread Nation, it was still very enjoyable for a middle grade book, which really cements my love for Justina Ireland as an author!

Have you read anything by these authors? What are some authors you think are underhyped?

January 2022 Wrap Up

It’s still so weird to write ‘2022’ right there, because it’s not 2021 anymore. It’s not 2021 anymore. How is this possible? (it’s also weird for me to write ‘2022’ there because I really only just started acknowledging that I have to put the year, because I have more than one January wrap up now).

Can we also just acknowledge that it’s now been a year since my ridiculous, insanely long January 2021 wrap up? Like that happened a year ago, and that consists of like…90% of my bookish fame. Right there. (joking, I don’t have bookish fame).

I read fifteen books this month, which is very good for me, and definitely the best reading month I’ve had since school started this year! This month, my reviews were all over the place, and I had more than one rating of 2, 3, 4 and 5 stars.

  • The Weight of Our Sky by Hanna Alkaf. I got this book for Christmas, but don’t know much about it, but it was really interesting and I enjoyed about! It’s about the 1969 race riots in Malaysia, something I’d never heard before, but it was good to learn about! ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Into the Crooked Place by Alexandra Christo. I’d read a book by Christo before and enjoyed it, though I don’t see much hype around her books. This book gave off pretty big Six of Crows vibes, it felt like a slightly less-good version of Six of Crows until the climax hit, but I still liked it! ⭐⭐⭐
  • A Snake Falls to Earth by Darcie Little Badger. I loved this one so much. There’s not much a plot for a big part of the book, but honestly I was enjoying the story enough that I didn’t care. The characters are awesome! ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Amazon.com: Down Comes the Night: A Novel: 9781250623638: Saft, Allison:  Books
  • The Space Between Worlds by Micaiah Johnson. Multiverse books are always interesting and I’m never entirely sure what to think. I enjoyed parts of this story, but I always feel like multiverse books will have plot holes or at least worldbuilding holes. ⭐⭐⭐
  • Down Comes the Night by Allison Saft. I was not entirely sure what I was going to think of this one, because I found the beginning really slow, but it picked up and I ended up enjoying this one! ⭐⭐⭐
  • Black Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse. This book was awesome. It’s been a while since I read such a high-fantasy-esq book (I’m aware I’ve read at least one high fantasy this month…but this one just had such a vibe you know?) and the world and characters in this book were so vibrant. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Amazon.com: Crier's War (Crier's War, 1): 9780062823946: Varela, Nina: Books
The Stonekeeper: A Graphic Novel (Amulet #1) (1): Kibuishi, Kazu, Kibuishi,  Kazu: 0000439846811: Amazon.com: Books
  • The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by VE Schwab. My first book by Schwab! Finally! I can definitely see where the hype came from on this one, though I didn’t really feel the hype myself. It was an enjoyable book, though. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Crier’s War by Nina Varela. This one got better progressively, and I ended up really enjoying it! I’m not a huge fan of sci fi (I say, having read two this month) but this one was super cool. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • The Amulet series by Kazu Kibuishi. This is a graphic novel series, and I usually don’t put graphic novels up here, but it was an entire 8 book series, so I thought I should. This is a super fun series, I’ve read the first few books in the past, but never the entire series straight through. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Amazon.com: Iron Widow: 9780735269934: Zhao, Xiran Jay: Books
Amazon.com: Fable: A Novel (Fable, 1): 9781250254368: Young, Adrienne: Books
  • Once Upon a Broken Heart by Stephanie Garber. Given that I wasn’t a huge fan of Caraval, I didn’t have super high hopes going into this one, and unfortunately I was right and didn’t enjoy this a whole lot. There were definitely aspects of the story that were fun, but overall it was eh. ⭐⭐
  • Iron Widow by Xiran Jay Zhao. This is one that everyone’s been raving about. I did end up enjoying it, but less than I expected, which was a little bit of a disappointment to me, since I’d really been anticipating loving this one. ⭐⭐⭐
  • Fable by Adrienne Young. A classic pirate adventure (not a literal classic, for the record). This one felt a bit bland to me, and I also did not like the romance, it came out of nowhere. ⭐⭐⭐
Witches Steeped in Gold by Ciannon Smart
Amazon.com: Furia: 9781616209919: Méndez, Yamile Saied: Books
Amazon.com: Iron Heart (Crier's War, 2): 9780062823977: Varela, Nina: Books
  • Witches Steeped in Gold by Ciannon Smart. This was a book that I was very much reading on again off again, so I’m not sure that I’m the best person to talk about it, but personally I felt like it was kind of confusing (read above before you take my opinion with a grain of salt) and just overall did not enjoy it very much. ⭐⭐
  • Furia by Yamile Saeid Mendez. Aaah, I love sports books so it’s always a treat to read one! This one was awesome, I’m not a soccer fan but I still enjoy reading about it and I really liked a lot of the plot! ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Iron Heart by Nina Varela. Sequel to Crier’s War, I think I enjoyed this one more than the first, actually! It felt like a very different book, but it was still really enjoyable. ⭐⭐⭐⭐

January’s goals:

  • Read at least 5 books✅
  • Drink water
  • Keep up with your book google form thing✅

It was January 10th when I finished five books this month, so that was definitely nice. I didn’t end up drinking as much water as I was kinda going for, but I definitely drank some, and I have been keeping up with tracking my books! Hooray!

February goals:

  • Keep up with my posting!
  • Drink. Water.

I don’t have many goals for February, mainly because I don’t want to force myself to create goals that I don’t actually want to do/don’t think I need to do. But I would love to keep posting every weekend as I’ve done this month, so that’s definitely a goal of mine.

  • I finished my English project! I had a giant group project in English that we’ve been working on since November and we finally had our presentation in the middle of January. It went pretty well, despite a slight freak out at the beginning of the day because two of my group members were unable to show up and we had to reconfigure the script.
  • We also had our first snow day of the year, and got quite a bit of snow, which was pretty nice because snow is always fun.
  • The last week of January was finals week, which was semi-stressful but not a whole lot, because I didn’t actually have that many tests. I also got really ahead in homework on the first few days so it was actually kind of chill.
  • COVID kinda blew up at the beginning of January, which I think is pretty much what happened all over, and my school had a lot of cases, but I myself did not get it and I think it’s dying down now!
  • I also started listening to audiobooks again this month, which is not something that I do very often, but so far I’ve been enjoying what I hear! If anyone has any audiobook recommendations, I would definitely enjoy hearing them!
  • Wordle. Do I need to say anymore? Because Wordle has kind of taken over everything, like EVERYONE plays it now. If you don’t, it’s a word game where you have to guess a five letter word in six tries, and there’s one word per day.

How was your month? Have you read any of these books? Do you have any audiobook recommendations?

The 2021 Book Tag: an Original Tag

Hey everyone! I’m back, with a SUPER exciting post! I introduce to you, my 2021 book tag!!!

To be honest, when I made my 2020 book tag last year, I did not expect to make one again this year. The 2020 book tag was to reflect a crazy year that none of us expected and none of us ever hoped to relive. But, while 2021 has been better in a lot of ways, we are still definitely not out of this mess. A lot of things still happened this year, and so I did end up choosing to make another book tag.

Disclaimer: As I, Phoenix, live in the United States of America, the events that these tags reflect are mainly based off of my own experience of things happening directly around me. Therefore, I won’t be including significant events that have happened elsewhere in the world in this tag. HOWEVER, if you are from another country and think of an event that was impactful around you, feel free to add another question to this tag that you think goes with that event!

Here are the rules and announcements for this tag! (Please copy and paste at the beginning of the tag!)

  • Link back to the original creator, Phoenix @Books With Wings
  • Thank the person who tagged you
  • Answer all the questions
  • Tag at least 3 people
  • While the events covered in this tag are mainly centered around the going-ons in the United States of America, if you live in another country feel free to add another question or two to this tag that you think goes with an important event that happened elsewhere!
  • PLEASE NOTE: While this tag discusses events that happened in 2021, it does not at all need to be completed in 2021. This is NOT a time-restricted tag and you may do it whenever you want. (you also do not need to talk about books that you read in 2021! It can be books you read whenever!)
  • Some of these questions are rather vague; these are totally up for interpretation!

Below is a list of the questions and their corresponding events in 2021:
Please note: while I tried my best, not all of these may be in chronological order.

  1. A sequel that did not live up to expectations (general 2021)
  2. A book where everything immediately went badly (Attack on the USA capital)
  3. A book where things seemed to change for the better (President Joe Biden’s inauguration)
  4. A book where science/some kind of sci fi thing plays a major role (Vaccines)
  5. A book where the characters get a reprieve (general, middle of the year)
  6. A book about sports/centered around competition (Summer Olympics 2021 2020)
  7. A book with a terrifying plot twist (Delta Variant)
  8. A book with awesome behind-the-scenes characters (eg side characters) (THANK YOU ESSENTIAL WORKERS)
  9. A book where there are HUGE consequences to an event/action/etc. (supply chain backups due to covid)

My answers:

A sequel that did not live up to expectations

After spending a bit of a ridiculous amount of time looking through my goodreads ‘read’ shelf, and determining that I no longer read many book serieses (that’s a word, definitely), I’ve decided on Children of Virtue and Vengeance. I really enjoyed book one, Children of Blood and Bone; in fact, it was one of my favorite books of whatever year I read it. And sure, the second book was good…it just wasn’t as good as I expected, compared to the first book.

A book where everything immediately went badly

I mean, honestly the whole beginning of She Who Became the Sun is pretty harsh. I mean, Zhu is left with…nothing and kinda has to remake her whole life (which of course she then does quite successfully).

A book where things seemed to change for the better

There were definitely some light parts in Act Cool, but there were also several times when it dealt with some much harsher topics, especially as it got closer to the end of the book (please check trigger warnings before reading!!!). While in the end, things weren’t totally resolved and happily-ever-after etc, it did seem to be a more hopeful ending.

A book where some kind of science/sci fi plays a major role

Not gonna lie, I was absolutely thinking about this book when I wrote this prompt. I mean, it kind of fits…perfectly. In The Ones We’re Meant to Find, it’s a futuristic world where a bunch of cities are literally in the sky because of flooding stuff and climate change, and tech plays a HUGE role overall in the story.

A book where characters get a reprieve

The fact that it actually took me quite a bit to think of a good response to this really says something about authors…when I think ‘get a reprieve’ I more imagine a pause in the actions near the middle of the book, but that just doesn’t happen much!!! In the end, I’m going with Under the Whispering Door by TJ Klune, because there’s one point when the two main characters just kinda go off on their own and chat which is always nice when characters get away from everything like that.

A book about sports/centered around competition

As a sports fan and someone who plays sports and someone who reads as well, I’ve read several books about sports (though books are rather lacking in the sports department honestly). But I’ve chosen Mo’ne Davis: Remember My Name for this prompt, because I actually got this book when I was much younger but just wasn’t very interested! I finally read it in August and sped through it, absolutely loving it!

A book with a terrifying plot twist

This book had the kind of plot twist to make me go, ‘wait, no!’ out loud. What the heck??? The River Has Teeth is one that I took an entire Sunday and just read it straight through, barely putting it down. It was spooky and enticing and, of course, shocking.

A book with awesome behind-the-scene characters (if you can’t think of anything, then side characters)

Honestly, I’m going with good old Hunger Games here. When I say ‘behind the scenes’ I kind of mean characters who don’t get a lot of page time but are always still helping, and in Hunger Games the people who stand out to me are Portia and Flavius. They were just kind of background supports that were pretty great. There was also a lot of things in the Hunger Games with behind the scenes characters, with the whole games; though of course not all of the other people were ‘awesome’.

A book where there were HUGE consequences to an event/decision/etc

It most certainly did not take me long to find a book for this prompt. I’m going with The Lost Girls by Sonia Hartl, which I read just last month. The huge consequence is kind of the main plot; Holly chooses to get turned into a vampire by her boyfriend. But then he dumps her, and she’s left as a 16 year old forever. She’s also connected to him, as he’s her maker, so she’s required to follow him wherever he goes. Also, she’ll have crimped hair forever.

Well, there are my answers to my 2021 book tag!!! I’m so excited to be doing this again, and I cannot wait to see everyone’s answers! This tag is open to anyone who wants to do it, as it’s an original tag, but I will tag a few people just to get things going:

Madeline @The Bookish Mutant
Alex @The Scribe Owl
Maria @The Character Study
Ashmita @The Fictional Journal
April @Booked Till Midnight

What did you think of my 2021 book tag? Have you checked out my 2020 book tag? What are some of your favorite books from 2021?

The Bookish Blog Tag

Hey, everyone! It’s been a very long time since I actually did a tag, and I have so many stacked up in my drafts folder that I decided to do one FINALLY!

I was tagged for this tag by the lovely Madeline @The Bookish Mutant, way back in January (sorry it took so long to do it!) Her blog is absolutely amazing so please go check it out!

I’m pretty sure this is going to be an extremely hard tag to do, given that it’s basically general ‘favorites’ in the book world, but let’s see how it goes!

Also, I’ve come up with a new sign-off graphic, I’d love to hear your thoughts on that!

What are 1-3 of your favorite books of all time?

Oh, a bookworm’s least favorite question. But seriously, how in the world am I supposed to choose THREE??? That being said, I can’t even remember the plot of the last book I read, how am I supposed to remember what plot of all the books is my favorite?

After a great amount of indecision, I’ve decided to go with Felix Ever After (Kacen Callender), Loveless (Alice Oseman) and I’ll Give You the Sun (Jandy Nelson). But honestly, don’t trust me on this. Felix Ever After and Loveless are probably correct, but I really don’t know what I’d say for the third book. I guess I’ll Give You The Sun will go in here for now.

What are 1-3 of your favorite authors of all time?

Also EXTREMELY hard. My first two are almost certainly Leigh Bardugo and Alice Oseman, but I really can’t think of a third author, so I’ll just leave it at those two

Who is your favorite female character of all time?

This is officially the hardest tag I’ve ever done. I think I’m going with Fie from The Merciful Crow for this one because even though it’s been such a long time since I read this book, I remember loving it! I honestly don’t see a lot of hype for this book around, which is disappointing because I definitely enjoyed it a lot!

Who is your favorite male character in a book?

This one might be a little easier, but still. Very difficult. As to not overthink things, I’m just going to go with Jesper from Six of Crows because I feel like if I actually go look through my books, I’m going to end up with a lot more indecision. And Jesper is a very cool character.

What is your favorite mythical world?

Who am I kidding? Of COURSE it’s the Grishaverse, same as Madeline! Everything about the world that Leigh Bardugo has created is stunning and just so brilliantly done! Though, I think a close second in worlds would be the one from The Merciful Crow. (Read. The. Merciful. Crow.)

What book has your favorite cover?

I scrolled through all 612 books on my goodreads shelves (and wow am I glad that I’m fairly conservative in adding books to my tbr) and came up with nine contenders. In the end, I think I’m going to have to go with The Light at the Bottom of the World by London Shah. It’s not the prettiest cover, and it wasn’t my favorite book, but there’s something about that cover that I LOVE.

What is your favorite book-to-movie adaption?

I don’t watch many movies so I honestly don’t know what to say for this one. I feel like Moxie is gonna be pretty good, but I haven’t actually watched that yet, so I don’t wanna say that before I watch it. Other than that, though, I couldn’t tell you what this one might be.

If you could make any book into a movie, what would it be?

Aaah I’m always very iffy on book to movie adaptations because it seems like a lot of times things are going to get messed up! However, for this one I’m going to say Not My Problem by Ciara Smyth. Its plot has very distinct plot points, which I think is good for a book being turned into a movie because the movie gets those plot points. Also, it’s super funny and the characters are great.

What was your favorite childhood book?

I legitimately don’t know what this means. Like when you say ‘childhood,’ how far back do you mean? I read Percy Jackson in 3rd and 4th grade, so that might work? But before those…oh boy I did not know what a good book was.
When I was very young, I remember reading the ‘Rainbow Magic’ series and loving them, getting basically all of them, and…wow. If you don’t know what they are, basically they’re books about two girls who meet some fairies and then help them. Each book is centered around a different fairy, who the girls meet at the beginning of the book and then turn into fairies (they have some special dust that lets them turn into fairies or something?) in order to help solve a problem the fairy has. They’re extremely repetitive, and there are some very odd fairies (Fatima the Face-painting Fairy…Monica the Marshmellow Fairy…there’s just so many books that they had to get creative I guess!)

Fantasy or Sci-fi? (Or neither?)

These days, I honestly don’t read much of either, but I’d definitely go with fantasy. I used to read fantasy all the time, and I still definitely read it much more than sci fi, though I’ve headed towards reading realistic fiction more these days. Sci fi, I’ll occasionally delve into, but I just don’t enjoy those books as much as fantasy or realistic fiction.

Well, that’s it for this tag! It’s so nice to FINALLY be doing tags again since it’s been so long, and I’ve met so many new people since then! That being said, I tag:

Susana @Susana Loves Books
Maria @The Character Study
Jan @The Doodlecrafter
Ritz @Living, Loving, Reading
Saniya @Sunnyside Reviews

What are some of your favorite books and authors? What do you think about mine? Do you do tags often? I’d love to chat with you! (PS what do you think of my new sign-off graphic???)

Book Review: The Sal and Gabi Series

Hey, everyone! Today I’m here to review a pair of books that I really should have reviewed sooner, given that I read them nearly a month ago at this point. I wasn’t originally going to review these, but I realized how fun and exciting they really are and how much I wanted to share them with my followers! Let’s get to it!

The Sal and Gabi Series | Carlos Hernandez

Published March 5, 2019 (book one)

382 pages | Hardcover

Trigger Warnings: Mentions of death of loved one (off page), references to child abuse, hospitalized baby.

Sal Vidón has not started at his new school under the best of circumstances. It’s the third time that he’s ended up in the Principal’s office in his first three days (though, the first two days were hardly his fault), but this time he’s facing Gabi Reál, who is determined to convince their Principal that Sal did put the dead chicken in Yasmany’s locker–even if no one saw him do it. Even if the chicken was gone when the janitor came to clean it up, and the blood that got on Yasmany’s shoe? Gone.

Not long after, Gabi stumbles on Sal’s most protected secret: Sal can conjure things much bigger than a dead chicken in someone’s locker. Things like his dead mother from an alternate universe. But as the pair gets to know each other better, their universe is being ripped apart by their manipulation of time and space.

All summaries are my own unless otherwise stated. Parts of the summary may be borrowed from goodreads.

I cannot tell you how enjoyable this series is. You would have to read it to understand the joy that this book is made of, all the jokes and friendship and adventure.
But this post is a review, so I’m going to at least give you a preview of everything this book offers. Keep in mind that the actual book? So much more.

One of the best things about these books is the friendship and the sense of community. While Sal and Gabi don’t start off on the best note, they quickly become amazing friends. The best part about it is that they are only friends, the author never tries to turn them into romantic partners, and it’s extremely clear that they are not going to, throughout the books. The adults in the books, especially Sal’s parents, suggest several times that Sal might have feelings for Gabi, but Sal quickly shoots them down. They’re friends. And, as Sal says, he is ‘not a sexual beast yet’. I was especially glad that it was acknowledged, even if it was quite quick, that Sal might be aromantic, because yes he is only twelve and this is a middle grade book, but despite what some people believe, alloromantic twelve year olds do, in fact, experience romantic attraction at that age. There are so many books in which a character hasn’t experienced romantic feelings until xxx comes along (mostly YA), or something like that, but it’s never mentioned that they might be somewhere on the aromantic spectrum and it was super refreshing to see it mentioned here. It wasn’t analyzed or discussed by anything, it was just a suggestion, a quick statement. It was also said very casually and no big deal was made about it, Gabi just said one sentence and that was it. I believe it was something like ‘if you were any more aro, I could shoot you from a bow’ and then they just moved on to the next topic.

I also mentioned the community in this book, and it really was AMAZING. Sal is surrounded by a lot of different communities and just the sense of belonging in these places, the familiarity among the people and how well most everyone got along, was so beautiful. I thought that his school was the best example of this. He attends a school focused on the arts, so there are a lot of times when very creative things are happening. The teachers are also very fun and get along well with the students which was cool! I think my favorite part centering around the school was in book two, when they are all putting on a performance. I won’t give you the specifics, but they end up doing it in an extremely unique way that first of all, sounds absolutely amazing, and second of all, required a lot of people to work together and it just felt like the whole school came together to help out and create something beautiful.

Sal was an extremely enjoyable character. At first, I was wondering if we’d get Gabi’s point of view as well, and I was a little sad when I realized that we wouldn’t, but it ended up being amazing anyways! The narration was really funny and I’m actually glad now that it was only from Sal’s POV because I feel like it would have been less entertaining if the voice switched every chapter or so. I also loved the author’s ability to describe characters, and give each one a very distinct personality. While Sal and Gabi were the only two main characters, there were many many side characters, some mentioned only once or twice, whereas some appeared continuously. A few were even our main characters but from another universe! And each one was very different and all amazing and entertaining in their own way.

The HUMOR. Once you read this book, you will not be able to get enough of the humor. Sal himself, as a magician, lives to make people laugh and this often gets the reader to laugh as well, but you will also find yourself laughing at his mishaps and the multiple amusing characters! I mean, his school’s logo is a rotten egg and there’s a giant statue of it on top of the school, complete with spewing smoke from a crack. There’s a talking toilet that can offer you life advice AND bleeps out any swear you come close to telling. The entire book is just extremely entertaining!

But the last thing that I wanted to hit on, is that despite the fact that the book is almost always very light and hilarious, it also touches real issues. Sal has diabetes and the books describe a lot about what that is like. There is also child abuse mentioned in the book, and It’s great how the author absolutely does not shy away from these things. There are a lot of middle grade books that are all light and fluffy, the only issues mentioned being those which assist the main plot of the book, and I think a lot of people are afraid that things like child abuse are ‘too heavy’ for people in the middle grade audience. Hernandez does none of this but also presents it in a more gentle manner than might be discussed in a YA book.

I would highly recommend the Sal and Gabi series to anyone looking for a fun book. Full of humor and brimming with creativity, this book is exactly what all middle grade books should be, and it’s fun for any age! My review absolutely does not do justice to this wonderful book and I encourage you to pick these books up to experience the full magic.

Have you read Sal and Gabi Break the Universe and its sequel? What did you think of it? If not, does this review make you want to pick it up? Let me know in the comments below!
As always, thank you so much for stopping by! Stay safe and keep on reading!

July Wrap Up

Approximately 99% of wrap ups I’ve read for this month have said the same thing, but it’s worth saying again: how is it already July? I can still remember making my crazy wrap up for January (yes, the one that was 3150 words long) like it was yesterday. I subtitled that one ‘one month down, eleven to go,’ and now we’re at ‘seven months down, five to go.’ How????
Anyways, as the first month of summer I feel like I had a pretty good reading month. Here’s what I’ve read:

Off the Record (9781984829993): Garrett, Camryn: Books - Amazon.com

Amazon.com: Not My Problem (9781839130854): Smyth, Ciara: Books
Amazon.com: Ace of Spades (9781250800817): Àbíké-Íyímídé, Faridah: Books
  • Off the Record by Camryn Garrett. This was a book that I was super excited for because I’d read the author’s first book a few months ago and loved it and I’m glad to say that it didn’t disappoint! I loved the story, the characters, basically everything! ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Not My Problem by Ciara Smyth. This book is everything. It’s funny and it’s fun (two different things) and it has some important lessons and it has an amazing slow burn romance and it’s just so great. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Ace of Spades by Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé. This book was shocking and beautifully written and just such an amazing debut. It had so many twists and turns! ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Amazon.com: American Street (9780062473042): Zoboi, Ibi: Books
American Royals (American Royals, #1) by Katharine McGee
Sal and Gabi Break the Universe by Carlos Hernandez
  • American Street by Ibi Zoboi. This was one that I read for school and I didn’t enjoy it immensely, it felt sort of slow at points, but overall it WAS a good story and I’m super glad that schools are assigning better books for reading (at least for summer reading, at least in my school). ⭐⭐⭐
  • American Royals by Katherine McGee. I was recommended this book by a friend who only reads very rarely and who loved this book so, despite a lot of bad reviews I saw, I gave it a try but unfortunately I did not enjoy it at all. ⭐⭐
  • Sal and Gabi Break the Universe by Carlos Hernandez. I adored this book. Easily my favorite middle grade book of all time (sorry Percy Jackson). It was such a fun book and SUPER unique and taught some great lessons, too! The friendships in this book were really valued which was awesome and there needs to be more books about that! I am so glad that this is a book. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Sal and Gabi Fix the Universe (A Sal and Gabi Novel, Book 2) (A Sal and Gabi  Novel, 2): Hernandez, Carlos: 9781368022835: Amazon.com: Books
One Last Stop: McQuiston, Casey: 9781250244499: Amazon.com: Books
Any Way the Wind Blows (Simon Snow, #3) by Rainbow Rowell
  • Sal and Gabi Fix the Universe by Carlos Hernandez. Book two was just as good as book one! I loved how Sal and Gabi’s friendship developed even more and the amazing production that their school ended up putting on. This book also deals with child abuse at times and I loved how Hernandez was able to weave that into the book in a way that middle grade readers could read! ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston. Much to everyone’s shock and horror I actually have yet to read RW&RB and I was going to hold off on reading this one too but then a friend lent it to me. This was a nice romance but it wasn’t great on the science fiction elements so if you are looking for romance, go for it! ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Any Way the Wind Blows by Rainbow Rowell. This is definitely a finale that lots of people have been waiting a while for. Overall, it was good and a nice finish to the series but nothing special. I did enjoy it better than I enjoyed book two though. ⭐⭐⭐
Amazon.com: The Cousins (9780525708001): McManus, Karen M.: Books
It Goes Like This by Miel Moreland
Amazon.com: Shatter the Sky (The Shatter the Sky Duology) (9781534437913):  Wells, Rebecca Kim: Books
  • The Cousins by Karen McManus. I picked this book up on a whim from my first library trip since Covid started and I have to say I’m surprised…because I didn’t like it as much as I thought I would. The plot twist was surprising but it didn’t make up for the rest of the book being fairly boring. ⭐⭐
  • It Goes Like This by Miel Moreland. This was an anticipated release of mine, and I really enjoyed it! I got it at my most recent bookstore trip thanks to a gift card and I loved the characters and how they dealt with the past! ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Shatter the Sky by Rebecca Kim Wells. It’s about time that I read this book. I heard the author speak at a webinar about a year ago (and actually wrote my first blog post about that, though it was super cringey) and have been meaning to get to her book since then. I finally did, and it was a pretty good book! As the first fantasy I’d read in a while, I enjoyed it! ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Amazon.com: A Good Girl's Guide to Murder (9781984896360): Jackson, Holly:  Books
Amazon.com: Yesterday Is History (9781492694342): Jackson, Kosoko: Books
  • A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson. This is the first time I’ve read this book. It’s been popular for so long, so many people love it, but I’d just never picked it up until now. And I LOVED it. Yes, there were some parts in which Pippa did some not great things (breaking into someone’s house? Pretending to be someone she isn’t to get info?) but the mystery itself, the reveal…I loved it. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Yesterday is History by Kosoko Jackson. This was an over 300 page book but I’m not entirely sure where those pages went, because it sure felt a lot shorter. I mean, overall I enjoyed this book, but there were a lot of things about it that felt lacking, most of all the relationship development. ⭐⭐⭐

The Monthly Bingo is created by A Colorful Bibliophile and it is totally amazing, so please head over there and check it out! It’s such a fun thing to do and I hope you’ll join in on it! Here’s the link to August’s board and here’s what I’ve done for this month!

I only wrote two posts this much which is down from my 3 last month but also I was away for about 2 weeks this month so whatever. Both these posts were super fun, though, so I’m really happy about them!

I loved hosting this interview and I think it’s my favorite interview to date!
This is probably my favorite post I’ve written, it was super fun to write!

July Goals:

  • Write a pretty big chunk of my book
  • Do at least half of my summer work (don’t you dare leave it all for August)✅❌
  • Read 12 books
  • Catch up on book reviews on goodreads
  • Try to play some more softball (if your body doesn’t continue to get hurt in various ways)

August Goals:

  • Finish summer work
  • Exercise some more
  • Play more softball
  • Catch up on goodreads reviews
  • Schedule your day

Overall, July was a SUPER fun month! It was the first month of my summer break so I had some more time to do stuff and I definitely did do some stuff!

  • I went to softball camp! This was huge for me because it was basically my first time playing softball after I fractured my elbow back in May. Fortunately, my elbow is all better now and camp was amazing. I learned a lot and made a lot of friends!
  • I also went on vacation. I’m not going to say where, but I just got back yesterday (If I post this on Sunday like I’m hoping to). It was a really nice vacation, I went on some hikes, I got some ice cream, and I just got to get away from my house for a bit!
  • I restarted the book I’m writing+did some planning. This is the book that I began writing back in…January? Something like that. I first thought of it way back in November or something like that. I’m on draft number 3 now, but this time I’ve done some more planning and have a pretty good idea for where I want it to go.
  • Baseball. I feel like this is something that has to be in every wrap up because the wrap ups are my only chance to talk about baseball. But the trade deadline closed on Friday and oh my gosh what the heck happened. I am still in shock over the Cubs and the Nationals and kind of distraught, too.

That’s a wrap! How was your month of July? Have you read any of the books that I read this month? And how’s your life been?
Thank you so much for reading this, it means the world. As always, stay safe and keep on reading!

June wrap up

Welcome back to another of Phoenix’s wrap ups! I feel like the beginning of this month, I read very slowly, and then I read a lot of books at the end of the month, so that’s nice! Anyways, how??? is??? it??? already??? July???

I read 14 books this month, which is pretty good for me!

Can't Say It Went to Plan by Gabrielle Tozer
Project LIT Mountain Brook - O'Neal Library
Amazon.com: Ruinsong (9780374313357): Ember, Julia: Books
  • Can’t Say it Went to Plan by Gabrielle Tozer. This is actually an ARC that I finished at the very end of May but I didn’t have time to put it in my May wrap up so now it’s here. It wasn’t a bad book, however it was very slow at the beginning and I think I was just expecting something a little different ⭐⭐⭐
  • Ivy Aberdeen’s Letter to the World by Ashley Herring Blake. This book overall was pretty good, however the whole plot of the person leaving notes in Ivy’s locker, basically blackmailing her to come out was not good and not a good lesson. But – Ivy didn’t actually come out because of that blackmail, and other than that part, it was actually a really good book! ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Ruinsong by Julia Ember. You can see the few fantasy books beginning to get mixed back into my reading…overall this was a fine book, I mean it was a unique concept but also nothing special (that sounds so brutal, geez) and I enjoyed it but wasn’t over the moon about it. ⭐⭐⭐
Amazon.com: Can't Take That Away (9781547605309): Salvatore, Steven: Books
Amazon.com: Between Perfect and Real (9781419746017): Stoeve, Ray: Books
Amazon.com: May the Best Man Win (9781250625120): Ellor, ZR: Books
  • Can’t Take That Away by Steven Salvatore. I really enjoyed this book. I honestly love a lot of stories where it’s a group of friends helping the MC get something (especially queer groups of friends) and so this was really fun! ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Between Perfect and Real by Ray Stoeve. I thought that this was a super awesome book, and it felt very different from any other book with a trans teen coming out to their parents. I thought that it was just told so well and just an amazing story overall. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • May the Best Man Win by Z. R. Ellor. This book was…interesting? I am honestly really conflicted on it. It had a cool plot and it was diverse but also…Jeremy, one of the MCs, was kinda a jerk? And the writing at times just wasn’t my favorite. However, Jeremy did acknowledge what the things he was doing were wrong and he was slowly getting better throughout the book, I think. ⭐⭐⭐
Amazon.com: Summer Bird Blue (9781481487757): Bowman, Akemi Dawn: Books
Amazon.com: Odd One Out (9781101939536): Stone, Nic: Books
Amazon.com: Starfish (9781481487726): Bowman, Akemi Dawn: Books
  • Summer Bird Blue by Akemi Dawn Bowman. Okay, the first thing I wanna say: I expected to cry a lot more. People describe sobbing over this book and I was a little scared but…I didn’t? I’m not a very emotional reader anyways, so that might be part of it, but still. I expected to cry more. Also, can I just say, yes for aroace spec rep??? YES. It’s soooooo rare and if I were gonna cry, the parts that it was mentioned is where I would most likely cry. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Odd One Out by Nic Stone. This book was…I don’t know? Like I honestly don’t know my opinions on this book. On one hand, it kept me hooked and it was interesting but on the other hand…well my mind keeps going back to the unchallenged biphobia. ⭐⭐
  • Starfish by Akemi Dawn Bowman. Dawn Bownman’s writing is a masterpiece. This writing was seriously so amazing, and the book itself was amazing as well. I especially enjoyed the descriptions of the art at the end of the chapters. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Amazon.com: Hani and Ishu's Guide to Fake Dating (9781645672579):  Jaigirdar, Adiba: Books
Amazon.com: You're Welcome, Universe (9780399551413): Gardner, Whitney:  Books
Amazon.com: The Ones We're Meant to Find (9781250258564): He, Joan: Books
  • Hani and Ishu’s Guide to Fake Dating by Abida Jaigirdar. This book was AMAZING. I really enjoyed The Henna Wars, which I read last month, but this one was 100% better, I loved it SO MUCH. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • You’re Welcome Universe by Whitney Gardner. I really enjoyed this book. I like how it really shows that graffiti is art because a lot of people just think it’s vandalism and don’t really appreciate it. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • The Ones We’re Meant to Find by Joan He. I…woah. I am thoroughly conflicted and confused about this book, that twist just sorta blew my mind? ⭐⭐⭐
Amazon.com: The Art of Running Away (9781631635779): Sabrina Kleckner: Books
Seafire by Natalie C. Parker: 9780451478825 | PenguinRandomHouse.com: Books
  • The Art of Running Away by Sabrina Kleckner. This was a really sweet and nice middle grade book and I enjoyed it immensly. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Seafire by Natalie Parker. This one took me a while to get through because fantasy slump but it was a fun one to come back to when I didn’t have anything else to read and I did overall enjoy it. ⭐⭐⭐

The Monthly Bingo is created by A Colorful Bibliophile and it is totally amazing, so please head over there and check it out! It’s such a fun thing to do and I hope you’ll join in on it!
Here’s what I’ve done for this month!

Despite not up to my normal level, I wrote a few more blog posts this month (more than last month, I mean, which wasn’t very hard to beat). All of these posts were super fun, though, and I really hope you check them out if you haven’t already because they’re some of my best yet (in my opinion).

This is my favorite post to date, I think it’s my most important post as well!
My first book review in a very long time–for an awesome book!

June goals:

  • Blog some more?
  • Hang out with my friends
  • Don’t think about school after it ends
  • Follow a few more blogs

July goals:

  • Write a pretty big chunk of my book
  • Do at least half of my summer work (don’t you dare leave it all for August)
  • Read 12 books
  • Catch up on book reviews on goodreads
  • Try to play some more softball (if your body doesn’t continue to get hurt in various ways)
  • School’s out! Yep, in June. My school goes a little longer than a lot of other peoples (though we don’t have school until September)
  • I started a new WIP! Don’t know if this is a good or bad idea because…I already have another WIP, but I’ve barely written any of this one anyways. I’m really excited for it though, because it actually has fake dating in it! I’m really looking forward to incorporating this into the plot since it seems like there are a LOT of fake dating books coming out recently and I wanted to write my own.
  • My team’s softball season ended. While I wasn’t able to play in the final games, given my injury, I still had a great time being on that team and I loved all my teammates. We ended up third (out of four teams) but it was still a really fun season, despite me being injured.
  • …More baseball stuff happened? Most of you have probably figured out that I’m a big baseball fan by now, but we’ve reached the halfway point of the season and things are going pretty well (depending on which team you root for haha. But then again, most of the things were expected. Except for…the Giants and the Red Sox?)

What was your June like? Have you read any of these books?
Thank you so much for stopping by and have a great July!

The Last Ten Books Tag

Okay, I have a LOT of tags to do. I mean, I think we all do. But I have a LOT. This year, I’ve been doing one tag a month, but it looks like that’s going to be too few. I’m going to try to do two tags this month but honestly, who knows if that’ll happen.
It’s not often that I do a tag that I wasn’t tagged for but I saw this tag on Never Not Reading and it just looked so interesting and I had to try it out! Let’s get right into it!

The Last Book I Gave Up On

It’s not often that I DNF a book and I believe that the last book I gave up on was War Girls, back in December. It was nothing against the book, I swear, I was just in a big reading slump and was definitely not in the mood to pick up sci fi. I’m going to have to pick it up again eventually but it’s definitely not near the top of my list of books to read soon.

Last Book I Re-read

Oh, wow, I do not reread books very often. I’m a little annoyed about this but the last book I reread was one that I had to read for school, because we were writing an essay on it and I wanted to refresh my memory. So, the last book I reread was, unfortunately, 1984 by George Orwell. I didn’t enjoy it the first time and I didn’t like it the second, either.

Last Book I Bought

Well this one is gonna have to be Rule of Wolves by Leigh Bardugo. I finished King of Scars around the middle of last month and immediately pre-ordered Rule of Wolves from the bookstore (and I got it three days before it was published which was a very nice surprise).

Last Book I Said I Read But Didn’t

This is not something I do often, if ever. There may have been a time during which I thought I read a book a while ago and so I said I read it, even though I didn’t, but I cannot think of anytime that that has happened at the moment and if it did, it probably happened a long time ago.

Last Book I Wrote in the Margins of

Nope! I don’t think that I have ever done this because I am too terrified of getting WORDS on the book (words that are not part of the book, I mean). It’s just…the pages look so nice, and pristine…how in the world could I RUIN it like that???

Last Book I Had Signed

Well, the last book I got that was signed was The Gilded Ones by Namina Forna because I got it in an Owlcrate box. So I have several books that I got signed because of Owlcrate. However, the only book that I have personally signed is All the Stars and Teeth by Adalyn Grace–I read it basically a year ago now (for some reason the date April 12 sticks out in my head when I think of AST…maybe that’s when I read it, maybe my brain is just weird…I definitely read it in April, though) and I really enjoyed it so I went and emailed the author, telling her that I was sad I couldn’t reread it because I’d gotten it from the library. And shockingly enough, I got a response in which she told me she could send me a copy of the book!!! Directly from the author!!! To me!!! When it arrived, it was personally signed with a message to me and this is probably my biggest book-related accomplishment ever.

The Last Book I Lost

Uuuuuuh I honestly cannot remember the last book I lost. The only thing that I can think of–you know when you lend a book to a friend and then they just…never give it back? Yeah, so I believe one of my friends who I literally never talk to anymore has Absolutely Truly, by Heather Vogel Fredrick, a middle grade mystery, and one of my friends has Ella Minnow Pea, which I lent to her because it’s a really strange book and she wanted to read it because I told her that. Lastly, one of my friends has To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo which she borrowed right before quarantine happened so I haven’t had a chance to get that one back. I have no idea if I’m ever going to get these books back, I might like to get Absolutely Truly back one day just because I own the second one and it’s sorta annoying to have the second but not the first and I’d like TKK back because it was a good book. I don’t really care about Ella Minnow Pea though.

Last Book I Had to Replace

I’m honestly not sure that I’ve ever had to replace a book. I don’t really care if my books get beat up as long as they’re still readable. Even the fourth Harry Potter book that has like four pages fallen out of it, we just keep the pages with the book and then if we ever read the book we just read those four pages when we come to the part where they fell out. (we haven’t read it in a while though, because of, you know, JKR)(‘We’ refers to my sister and me in case anyone’s wondering)

Last Book I Argued Over

Well, I’m not entirely sure if this was an argument or just a discussion but basically I had a friend who read and enjoyed One of Us is Lying by Karen M McManus and at one point a few weeks ago I just pointed out the problematic aspects to her just to make her aware of them (I have also read One of Us is Lying and overall I did enjoy it, though now I have been made more aware of the parts of it that are extremely problematic). We just had a discussion of whether it was okay to still enjoy the book, despite that, and why it was so problematic and things like that.

Last Book I Couldn’t Find

I’m assuming this means like couldn’t find in a library/bookstore given that there already was a ‘last book you lost’ question and I think…well, a while ago I believe I was trying to find an ebook copy of The Catcher in the Rye and my library…doesn’t have an ebook copy of that??? I was extremely surprised about that, given that it’s a classic.

Well, that ends the tag! I’ll tag:

I hope you enjoyed this tag, as it was super fun to do! Please, if you find this tag interesting, go ahead and try it, no need to be tagged! Thank you so much for stopping by and reading this, it means the world! As always, stay safe and keep on reading!