February Wrap Up

February was a great reading month for me! If I don’t participate in any read-thons, I average about 4 books per month.  In February, I read 6 books!  🙂

Here’s what I read in February:


Goodreads

My Review

Goodreads

My Review

Goodreads

While I enjoyed this book, I didn’t have enough to say about it for a full review.  It was a great, quick contemporary read especially for book lovers.  I loved that Jenny Colgan decided to dedicate this book to book lovers and then write a humerous dedication to many types of readers.  It set the stage for a very fun read filled with the love of libraries and books.

Goodreads

I enjoyed that this book felt like Lorelei Gilmore was talking directly to it’s readers.  I really liked some parts of this book, particularly the beginning and the end, but I found some of the middle of the book to be less interesting and entertaining.  As a fan of Gilmore Girls and Parenthood, this was a must read and overall I liked the book.

Goodreads

My Review

Goodreads

Leah Remini shares her life in Hollywood as well as her struggles with growing up in Scientology.  This was an interesting read and I found her to be very brave to share such experiences.

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Although I did not participate in any read-a-thons in February, I did participate in the Love-A-Thon this month.  I had a blast spreading bookish love and meeting more readers across many social media outlets.

 This years hosts of the Love-a-thon were Alexa of Alexa Loves Books, Cece of The Novel Hermit, Kristin of Super Space Chick and Mel of The Daily Prophecy.

 Here’s my Love-A-Thon blog posts from February:

I’m already looking forward to next year’s Love-A-Thon! ❤ 🙂  In the meantime, remembering to spread the love to the bookish community throughout the year is what I took with me from this year’s Love-A-Thon.

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Review:Cinder by Marissa Meyer

Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles, #1)Cinder by Marissa Meyer
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I don’t know why I waited so long to read Cinder by Marissa Meyer. I loved it! I think the cyborg and science fiction elements made me keep putting off reading this book, since I don’t read science fiction novels very often. However, Marissa Meyer crafts such an amazing and engaging story that keeps non-science fiction readers, like myself, turning the pages.

Cinder is a retelling of Cinderella. Our main character, Cinder, is a strong female character despite much hardship in her life. Cinder is a very likeable and relatable character, that I found myself rooting for throughout the entire book. She doesn’t remember any of her life prior to age 11 and becoming a cyborg. Cinder lives with her legal guardian, who doesn’t want her, and her two sisters (the legal guardian’s children). Unlike the original fairytale of Cinderella, Cinder has a great relationship with one of the sisters. I really enjoyed thst change that Marissa Meyer writes into her version of the Cinderella fairytale. It is so beautiful to see this sisterly relationship and their love for each other.

Throughout the book, Cinder learns a lot about herself with the help of Dr. Erland and how she can help the people of New Beijing through a horrible epidemic. At the end of the book, there is a huge revelation about Cinder that I feel like I should have seen coming. However, I was so engrossed in the story and purely enjoying it at face value, that I didn’t see the twist coming.

Queen Levana is an awful character. Marissa Meyer writes her character so well that every time I read about Queen Levana, she made my skin crawl. She puts Kai and Cinder in some very tough and unfair situations. I liked that Kai looked beyond Cinder’s second class status and her being a mechanic, but some of his choices broke my heart for Cinder and himself. I’m excited to see what happens with Kai and Cinder throughout this series and what choices they ultimately make.

I look forward to continuing with this series and seeing what’s next for Cinder, Kai, Dr. Erland, Queen Levana and the people of New Beijing. I look forward to seeing how Marissa Meyer introduces more fairytale retellings into The Lunar Chronicles series. The ending of Cinder definitely left me wanting more and I’m so glad I didn’t let the science fiction/cyborg elements stop me from picking this book up!

Tag Tuesday:The To Be Read Tag

The To Be Read Tag was originally created by A Perfection Called Books.

I heard about this tag from E.M. Paperbound.

How do you keep track of your TBR pile?

I mainly use Goodreads to keep track of my TBR pile.  Also, I just recently cleaned out my bookshelves and made sure all of my unread physical books were all together on my shelves.

Is your TBR mostly print or ebook?

My TBR pile is mostly physical (print) books.

How do you determine which book from yout TBR pile to read next?

I do make TBRs at the start of each month for that month, but I am a mood reader. My monthly TBRs are just suggestions of books that I would like to read within the month.  If I’m in the mood for a book on my monthly TBR, I will pick that book.  I will also choose a book from my TBR if it’s a book of the month for a Goodreads group I participate in or a read-a-long scheduled for the particular month.  Or, sometimes I will just scan my TBR shelves until a book jumps out at me as the one to read at that time.

A Book that’s Been on Your TBR for the Longest?

Goodreads

This book has been on my Goodreads TBR since October 31, 2012!

A Book You Recently Added to Your TBR

Goodreads

I currently have this book checked out of the library and I’m hoping to read it in March.

A Book in Your TBR Strictly Because of its Beautiful Cover

Goodreads

A Book on Your TBR that You Never Plan on Reading

Goodreads

An Unpublished Book on Your TBR that You’re Excited For

Caraval Book#2 by Stephanie Garber.  There’s no cover or title for this book yet.

Goodreads

A Book on Your TBR that Basically Everyone’s Read but You

Goodreads

I will complete this series this year!  🙂

A Book on Your TBR that Everyone Recommends to You

Goodreads

A Book on Your TBR that You’re Dying to Read

Just one!  Ummm…

Goodreads

How Many Books are on Your TBR Shelf?

Waaaay too many to count!  I’m trying to read off my shelves (or the library) this year because I bought so many books in 2016.  I’m not on a book buying ban, but I’m trying to focus on reading the books I’ve already purchased and not buy too many more books this year.

If you would like to do this tag, then I tag you!  🙂  If you do this tag, please link it below so I can read your answers.

If you have any suggestions of tags you’d like to see me do for Tag Tuesday, please comment and let me know.  Thanks!  🙂

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Musing Mondays (Feb. 27)

Musing Mondays is hosted by Ambrosia at her blog, The Purple Booker.

Musing Mondays is a weekly meme that asks you to choose one of the following prompts to answer:

  • I’m currently reading…
  • Up next I think I’ll read…
  • I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
  • I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I can’t wait to get a copy of…
  • I wish I could read ___, but…
  • I blogged about ____ this past week…

THIS WEEK’S RANDOM QUESTION: Have you ever accidentally destroyed a book? Such as accidentally dropped it in the tub, or run it over with a bike? How about accidentally on purpose or simply purposefully?

I’m currently reading…

Goodreads

and

Goodreads

I’m almost done reading both of these books.  I should have them completed by tomorrow. I can’t believe February is about to be done, but I’m looking forward to Spring. We’ve had a few Spring-like days in February and it’s made me yearn for Springtime even more.  🙂

THIS WEEK’S RANDOM QUESTION: Have you ever accidentally destroyed a book? Such as accidentally dropped it in the tub, or run it over with a bike? How about accidentally on purpose or simply purposefully?

Hmmm…I can’t say that I have ever destroyed a book.  Perhaps as a very young child?  But, I don’t have any memories of ever destroying a book.  I’m not much of a multitasker while reading, except for interuptions from the kiddos or husband at times.  LOL  Perhaps, not multitasking while reading is why I don’t think I’ve ever accidentally destroyed a book.  I do often drink tea while reading and I’ve spilled on a book from time to time, but that doesn’t make the book unreadable.  I don’t read in a bath, but if I did, I’d definitely be the type to drop it in the bathtub!  😉

Feel free to post your Musing Monday link.  I’d love to read what you’re musing about this Monday

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Musing Mondays (Feb. 20)

Musing Mondays is hosted by Ambrosia at her blog, The Purple Booker.

Musing Mondays is a weekly meme that asks you to choose one of the following prompts to answer:

  • I’m currently reading…
  • Up next I think I’ll read…
  • I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
  • I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I can’t wait to get a copy of…
  • I wish I could read ___, but…
  • I blogged about ____ this past week…

THIS WEEK’S RANDOM QUESTION: Do you like new book smell? Old book smell? All book smell?

I’m currently reading…

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Goodreads

and

Goodreads

I blogged about ____ this past week…

❤ LOVE-A-THON ❤

I had the greatest time this weekend participating in  Love-A-Thon!  I met so many lovely booklovers accross all forms of social media.  I enjoyed creating many blog posts this weekend for the challenges, chatting on Twitter and finding new blogs/Instagrammers/YouTubers to follow.  If was a great way to bring the book community together and remind each of us of the importance of spresding the love.  ❤

Here are my posts from this past weekends Love-A-Thon:

If you joined me for the Love-A-Thon, it was great meeting you and getting to know you.  I look forward to continuing to chat and share our love of reading!

If not, I would encourage you to consider joining the Love-A-Thon next year. It was such a joy to take part in and I highly recommend it.

THIS WEEK’S RANDOM QUESTION: Do you like new book smell? Old book smell? All book smell?

I’m an all book smell kind of girl!  If you can smell the books, you’re one step closer to your next book adventure!  🙂

Love-a-Thon Challenge: On the Road (Trip)!

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Love-a-thon 2017 will be taking place from February 18, 2017 -February 20, 2017.  This will be my first year participating in the Love-a-thon and I’m so excited!  🙂 ❤  The purpose of the Love-a-thon is to bring the online book community together, meet new booklovers across all social media platforms and to spread love to those online booklovers we have already met along the way.  This years hosts of the Love-a-thon are Alexa of Alexa Loves Books, Cece of The Novel Hermit, Kristin of Super Space Chick and Mel of The Daily Prophecy.

This challenge is all about creating a virtual road trip with 3-4 people (fictional characters, readers/bloggers, authors, etc) and to talk about all different aspects of the trip.

I have decided that on this road trip, I would take real readers, bloggers and BookTubers. That being said, I’ve met so many wonderful readers through all kinds of social platforms that choosing only 4 people is tough.  I would love to take each and everyone I’ve met and had great bookish (and otherwise) conversation with on this trip!  That’s saying a lot from someone who is as shy as I am!  This community has been so kind and welcoming that I wish I could take all of you on my virtual road trip.  🙂

Since I can only take 4 people with me, here’s who I would take:

  1. Krista from Books and Jams
  2. Katie from Life Between Words
  3. Amanda from Cover 2 Cover Mom
  4. Lauren from Two Birds, One Blog

While on the road, we would talk about books, of course!  I would love to chat with Amanda more about recently meeting Brit Bennett, the author of The Mothers.  I recently read The Mothers and really enjoyed Brit Bennett’s debut novel so I would be really interested to hear from Amanda all about meeting Brit Bennett and any insight into her writing of her first novel.  Lauren and I have both already read The Mothers and I believe the other ladies are planning to read the book.  Hopefully, by our November virtual road trip, they will have read The Mothers too.

We could also talk about Anne of Green Gables and Harry Potter.  Hopefully by November, I will have read the last two Harry Potter books.  Yes, I am one of the last people to still be reading the Harry Potter series for the first time!  LOL

We would probably talk about what authors we’re most excited to meet and why?  Part of our trip would include a book festival, more details to come.  Talking about why we’re excited to meet certain authors might introduce others to new others or inspire us to try out the authors the other ladies are excited about.

Of course, for those of us who have kids on this trip, I’m sure talking about our kids would be part of the conversation as well.  🙂

As far as music on the road trip…we are all book lovers, so I think we would probably choose an audiobook to listen to along the way.  As far as what audiobook?  I’m not sure, I think we’d choose that as a group.

We would be headed to…Austin, Texas!  On November 4-5, 2017 Austin, Texas has the 2017 Texas Book Festival.  So, we would head out on our road trip later this year in time to participate in this book festival.

The Texas Book Festival features: 

  • 250+ nationally and critically recognized authors
  • 20+ venues including the State Capitol
  • 80+ exibitors
  • live music
  • local food trucks
  • opportunities to meet authors

We would also make time to visit Book People, a two story independent bookstore that has been awarded the best bookshop in Texas for the past 15 years!

I think it would be a lot of fun to add some book buying challenges to our group to accomplish in between our time at the Texas Book Festival and Book People.  If we were really going on this trip, I would include the rest of the group in the creation of these challenges, but for the purpose of this post, I came up with some possible challenges for our virtual trip.

  1. Buy a book for each of the other lovely ladies on this trip that you enjoyed and you think they would also enjoy (write a note to each of the ladies inside the book to make this purchase an extra special reminder of our trip)
  2. Cover Buy: Choose a book totally based on it’s cover.  No reading of the synopsis! 😉
  3. Buy a book from a favorite author that you either do not already own or haven’t read yet
  4. Choose a group book together to read when we return home.

Since, this is a virtual trip, cost is irrelevent right?!?!  So, why not stay in the #1 rated hotel in Austin, Texas, the Four Seasons Hotel Austin!

Room with a balcony and lakeside view  🙂

 

Spa Day! 🙂

I think this would make the perfect book lovers getaway and I wish I could share it with every book lover I’ve met through social media.  This community is the best!  ❤ If, this wasn’t a virtual trip, I think I would share it with the rest of you, by daily blogging about it, of course!  🙂  I would also look for the perfect items for all of my book loving friends and have a giveaway when I returned.

Oh how I wish this was a real trip!  Friends who love books, books, authors, bookshops, luxury hotel stay, good food, adventures to blog about, time at the spa…what could be better?!?!

 

2017 Love-a-Thon Challenge: Valentines Care Package

2017-love-a-thon-graphic

Love-a-thon 2017 will be taking place from February 18, 2017 -February 20, 2017.  This will be my first year participating in the Love-a-thon and I’m so excited!  🙂 ❤  The purpose of the Love-a-thon is to bring the online book community together, meet new booklovers across all social media platforms and to spread love to those online booklovers we have already met along the way.  This years hosts of the Love-a-thon are Alexa of Alexa Loves Books, Cece of The Novel Hermit, Kristin of Super Space Chick and Mel of The Daily Prophecy.

The purpose of this challenge is to choose one or more of our favorite characters, go virtually shopping for them and surprise them with a Valentine’s Day care package. ❤

I decided to go virtually shopping for Anne Shirley from the Anne of Green Gables series.  As I’ve mentioned many times, I think it would be fun to have had Anne as a friend.  I had a blast “shopping” for some Valentine’s Day treats for her.

Here’s what I would give Anne for Valentine’s Day:

The first item I would give Anne is this journal.  On the front cover it says. “Live Simply, Dream Big. Be Grateful, Give Love, Laugh Lots” which sounds like a perfect summary of the character of Anne.  I imagine that even in this modern day, Anne would be a fan of the written word and hand written journaling.

 

Next, I would choose a bouquet of flowers for Anne. But, not just a traditional bouquet, one that says friendship and fun.  Anne was such a fun child who enjoyed nature and I would want the bouquet to represent that with bright, fun colors.

 

 

I would also include a photography book or two all about nature. I could see Anne sitting outside on a porch swing admiring the beautiful nature throughout the pages of the book.  Or, curled up on a big comfy chair, under a warm blanket in front of a fireplace on a cold winter night, flipping through the pages looking at the pictures, just dreaming of Spring.

I would also include this beautiful necklace.  It says “Know your own happiness. Want for nothing but patience-or give it a more fascinating name: Call it home.”  A beautiful quote from Jane Austin that fits Anne perfectly. In Anne of Green Gables, Anne gets a new home and to have the love of a family. Anne knows her own happiness.  This necklace both in what it says and how it looks, makes me think of Anne.

 

Something that is more modern that I think Anne would enjoy is Harry Potter! I feel like Anne would enjoy imagining being at Hogwarts along with all the readers that enjoy this series. I believe Anne would especially enjoy the beauty of the illustrated editions of the Harry Potter books.  Therefore, I have decided to include the two illustrated versions that have been released so far into Anne’s Valentine’s Day surprise.

 

Finally, what would a Valentine’s Day surprise be without some chocolate? Some simple, but pretty chocolate hearts for Anne just seems perfectly sweet! ❤

 

 

 

 

I would then find a picnic basket to pack all of these surprises into for Anne.  Perhaps, something like this…

In our home, we focus the celebrating of Valentine’s Day on our kids.  We surprise the kids with some candy, a little gift and a card in the morning.  We encourage the kids to spread the love to their friends in some little ways throughout the day.  So, with that it was fun to add a bookish childhood “friend” to my Valentine’s Day this year.  Virtually shopping for Anne was a lot of fun and added something extra special the month. 🙂