TAG | The Liebster Award

School is FINALLY starting to wind down, so now I have little to no excuses to not blog!

Ally nominated me for the Liebster award in February, so THANK YOU AND I’M SO SORRY IT TOOK ME SO LONG OT GET AROUND TO THIS!! Everyone, please go check out her blog!

The Liebster Award Rules

  1. Acknowledge the blog that gave it to you and display the award
  2. Answer 11 questions that the blogger gives you
  3. Give 11 random facts about yourself
  4. Nominate 11 blogs and notify them of their nomination
  5. Give these blogs 11 questions to answer

Questions from Ally

  1. If you could acquire any ability, what would it be?
    • The ability to hoola-hoop! I’ve literally never figured out how, and I’m pretty sure, at this point, it’s witchcraft (the dark kind).
  2. What’s your perfect breakfast?
    • Waffles (preferably chocolate), with two eggs, sunny side up! OR yogurt and toast!
  3. What’s your phone background?
    • My lock screen is my girlfriend and I from Christmas and my home background is me and my cat, Jonas!
  4. Who was your first favourite author?
    • I have several, but if I was forced at gunpoint to pick just one, to keep it fair (since this author is now dead), I’d say J.D. Salinger.
  5. If you could use any spell from Harry Potter, which would it be and why?
    • I have literally never read a HP book in my life . . . sorry (**everyone unfollows)
  6. If you could only name your children (or pets if you don’t want children) after the characters in a book series, which series and names would you choose?
    • Ha! Probably the Thrown of Glass series. I like Dorian, Aelin, and Rowan as names.
  7. What’s something you’ve recently been obsessed with? Gush about it.
    • BAKING! I just LOVE baking, and I try to find a new recipe to make every weekend, though it’s difficult when 1) you’re attempting to eat as healthy as possible 2) you have a college budget and 3) you have little kitchen space
  8. If you could require everyone to read one book, which book would it be?
    • The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
  9. Hot or iced coffee?
    • Hot
  10. What was your favourite subject in school?
    • Math from Sophomore year below. English Junior and Senior year.
  11. If you could tell your 15-year-old self one thing, what would it be?
    • STOP TAKING EVERYTHING SO SERIOUSLY NO MATTER HOW SERIOUS THEY MAY SEEM!!!!!!!!!

11 Random Facts About Me

  1. I h a t e bacon.
  2. My preferred egg style is sunny-side up or scrambled.
  3. When I first adopted my cat, Jonas, he had an upper-respiratory infection that was not going away, and the vet scared me thinking he might have feline HIV or leukemia. Lots of money and tests later, it was, in fact, just the sniffles. (pictures of Jonas in little form below)
  4. I used to weigh 355 pounds.
  5. I lost over 150+ pounds.
  6. I used to know someone in high school who was afraid of the number nine.
  7. FACT: Dipping your grilled cheese in ketchup is underrated.
  8. I was drum major of our local marching band my senior year in high school.
  9. I used to have an unhealthy obsession with rollercoasters (still kind of do).
  10. Single origin, light-roast coffee is my preferred bean!
  11. Hammonds, currently, is my favorite chocolate brand . . . (huge shoutout to Sara for this)

My Questions for You

  1. Cake or non-cake donut?
  2. What is you preferred milk type (two percent, whole, almond)?
  3. What’s the last book you check out form the library?
  4. Have you ever met anyone famous?
  5. What’s the last thing you’ve cooked or baked from scratch?
  6. Biscuits or bagels?
  7. baby boi or BIG BOI? (refer to and include one above picture)
  8. If you could have dinner with one author that’s alive, who would it be?
  9. What is your most anticipated release of the year?
  10. What’s been your most disappointing read this year, so far?
  11. What was the last song you listened to?

I understand we’re doing an 11 theme here but I don’t think that’s happening! NOMINATIONS:

Sara / Crystal / Jessica / Sahi / Bibi / Robin


Answer a question from one of “my questions for you” in the comments! Let’s chat!

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Let’s Talk | That Time a NYT Bestselling Author Came @ Me: Mackenzi Lee Edition

I think one of the most important things that I’ve learned while being in college is to speak up for what you believe in, otherwise how will anything be changed — how will you make a difference? I mean, that’s one of the core parts of humanity, being able to speak up for what you believe in, right?.

One thing I believe in, or, should I say, have been against for a very long time now is publishers releasing these very tiny works of, like, 50 pages and then charging fans upwards of $10 for this practical chapbook of something.

Note, that I am not one to usually voice my opinion on social media about things, but when I saw this post by NYT Bestselling author Mackenzi Lee, I felt the urge to say something:

I think the main thing that made me upset about this was the fact that this was a pre-sale incentive for people who decided to buy the novel early and now they’re gong to be selling it? To me, that just made me a little upset.

Now, if you scroll through my twitter, I hardly, ever post anything on there anymore (besides the automatic posts from my blog), but I decided to reply to this. For everyone who knows me off the blog, they know I hate getting into confrontations, I hate hurting people’s feelings and I hate to see others hurt. So, when replying to the tweet, I knew I had to do it in a way where it didn’t seem I was coming off harshly, or in a rude way. But, I just felt the urge to say something about this:

Someone replied, and I replied back:

And I thought that was that. I thought I had made my point, respectively.

Well, two days later, I get out of my Shakespeare class and am having lunch with my friends when I see this:

Okay, first off, WOAH . . .

Not only do I feel this response is a slight (if not huge) overreaction, my first point of criticism is that she seems to want to be addressing a wide variety of “harassers” and people who are “coming at her,” yet, I seem to be the only one tagged in this.

Later, on her Instagram story, she posts things like:

These really made me upset. While she didn’t directly call me out in this one, we definitely know what spurred it.

I had this nice reply to my tweet later on:

Considering I literally said in my tweet (let me quote here), “I know you probably had nothing to do with this decision . . .” (where she later said she kind of did), does make me slightly . . . very angry.

In my opinion (and this will be the last one I state about this, because apparently stating any kind of opinion to someone with a large following will make them retweet it and complain and have tons of people blindly come to their defense . . . or maybe that’s just one person. Idkidk), when you post something on social media, it is then out of your control. If someone doesn’t like something you say and politely tells you so, do I think someone should have the right to push back to defend themselves? Abso-freaking-lutley. But Lee’s complete disregard for the power of her platform, the way in which she addressed the issue — i.e. specifically re-tweeting my specific tweet — and the overall rudeness of this entire thing has made me lose all respect for this author.

So here I am, retaliating and expressing my anger on my own, much smaller, platform. But I love all of you guys and am thankful every single day for everyone of you.

It deeply disappoints me to see such a blatant disregard from someone I used to have respect for.

One person out of 20k+ to stop supporting someone isn’t really much of anything. But I feel this was inappropriate on her side, and I just cannot support something like this.

You’re welcome to check out this whole conversation for yourself, as I will leave a link at the end of all of this (I had to get sassy with a couple of people trying to fuel this very unnecessary fire, so please excuse that).

Here’s the link: https://twitter.com/themackenzilee/status/1115269391111921665

Also, I will admit, I made a slight mistake . . .

. . . it’s actually $14.99.

P.S.

P.S.S.

This one’s a bonus, just for fun! She didn’t tweet this directly @ me, but it’s neat, so I thought I’d share:

Now, whoever Mel is talking about I am sure is, in fact, an “entitled little asshole,” and I’m sure Mel did all of her research before deciding to bring hate speech into things. Since Mel must have forgotten to tag the person she was talking about, I decided to help her out:

Thank you, Mel . . .


I would really like to get your opinion on this! Let’s chat in the comments!

UPDATE: 200 Followers, Italy, Shakespeare (?)

Wow, I feel like it has been forever since I’ve posted something, but here we are! So, a lot has been happening, my academic semester is coming to an end and everything is just crazy!

1.) 200 Followers!!!

Woah!!! Thank you so much!!! Do you have any idea how much this means?

Well, a lot!

I’ve been on this site a little over a year, and I just cannot believe that there are 200+ people out there who care about my words. So, thank you so much.

Throughout the year and 200 followers, I’ve had unbelievable response to two tags I created (Spring Cleaning, Song Request), met amazing people, and interacted with all of you! So, thank you, thank you, thank you!


2.) Italy!

Another reason I have been so absent, was that I spent a week and a half in Italy!

I could talk for awhile about the experience, but, all-in-all, I had a great time!

3.) Shakespeare?

And, the main reason I’ve been so absent . . . wait for it . . . yes, school.

Don’t worry, I’m loving it! But, the semester is coming to a close in less than a month, and there is just a lot to be done. So instead of reading things that I would normally, I have just been reading a lot of required things. In that is a lot of Shakespeare (which I found out I, like, really love ? and that everyone needs to give a second chance if their high school scared them away from him). But, I have been reading some short stories and a few novels that will (hopefully) have reviews sooner or later.

In the meantime, here are a couple great recommendations from my required reading list that I have really enjoyed!

  • “The Paperhanger” by William Gay
  • Hamlet, Prince of Denmarkby William Shakespeare

So . . . “The Paperhanger” technically was not required, but I couldn’t just list all of Shakespeare’s works, haha.

BONUS: Big Boi’s (Jonas’s) Birthday D’:

My big boi, Jonas, turned ONE on the 31st.

Time flies D”””’:

small boi

medium boi
big boi D’: I
big boi D’: II

Thank you guys so much for sticking with me and continuing to give me so much love, even with my lack of recent posts!!! ❤


What have you been up to lately? Let’s chat in the comments!

YOU’D BE MINE by Erin Hahn | Review

I was provided a free copy of this by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Release: April 2, 2019

Amazon | Goodreads

302 Pages

Annie Mathers is America’s sweetheart and heir to a country music legacy full of all the things her Gran warned her about. Superstar Clay Coolidge is most definitely going to end up one of those things. 

But unfortunately for Clay, if he can’t convince Annie to join his summer tour, his music label is going to drop him. That’s what happens when your bad boy image turns into bad boy reality. Annie has been avoiding the spotlight after her parents’ tragic death, except on her skyrocketing YouTube channel. Clay’s label wants to land Annie, and Clay has to make it happen. 

Swayed by Clay’s undeniable charm and good looks, Annie and her band agree to join the tour. From the start fans want them to be more than just tour mates, and Annie and Clay can’t help but wonder if the fans are right. But if there’s one part of fame Annie wants nothing to do with, it’s a high-profile relationship. She had a front row seat to her parents’ volatile marriage and isn’t interested in repeating history. If only she could convince her heart that Clay, with his painful past and head over heels inducing tenor, isn’t worth the risk.


I think the first thing that attracted to me to this book, in all honesty, was the cover. So, I’m going to give it major pointers there before we get started. Second, was the premise — I mean, getting to travel along on a dreamy, summer country tour and swoon along the way? I couldn’t resist.

This is Hahn’s debut novel, and let me tell you how impressed I am. This story is so light, so fun, so heart-wrenchingly/warmingly good, that I am so honored I got to be one of the first to read it.

Clay and Annie, the MCs, in this are just absolutely amazing. One thing that really makes a book for me is that the characters need to be so real that I ca almost reach out and touch them, and that’s what Hahn has done here.

One of the things I enjoyed the most about this, was that Clay, while the male love interest, was never described as being anything other than “handsome and broad shouldered”, which is beyond what I coud ask for. In most romance novels, it seems, description of their ‘wash-board abs” and “perfect smile” get in the way, but Hahn knew what she was doing with this one by keeping a lot of the details up to the reader, which really really worked.

I think my all time favorite thing in this, however, wasn’t only the connection between the characters throughout and the how Hahn’s minimalism in graphic description really made for the work, but possibly the songs that Hahn crafts for us. Each of the originals in here that Clay and Annie sing, I can almost hear, can almost picture myself listening to on a stroll to class or with the windows down, driving home to my little town in Tennessee.

Hahn has crafted a beautiful little story here that is so warm that it reminds me of fresh baked apple pie sitting on the windowsill. Give this one a shot. Clay’s and Annie’s stories are sure to win you over and have you melting too.

Rating;


What do you look for in a romance? Let’s chat in the comments!

YOU by Caroline Kepnes | Review

Amazon | TBD | Goodreads

422 Pages

When a beautiful, aspiring writer strides into the East Village bookstore where Joe Goldberg works, he does what anyone would do: he Googles the name on her credit card.

There is only one Guinevere Beck in New York City. She has a public Facebook account and Tweets incessantly, telling Joe everything he needs to know: she is simply Beck to her friends, she went to Brown University, she lives on Bank Street, and she’ll be at a bar in Brooklyn tonight—the perfect place for a “chance” meeting.

As Joe invisibly and obsessively takes control of Beck’s life, he orchestrates a series of events to ensure Beck finds herself in his waiting arms. Moving from stalker to boyfriend, Joe transforms himself into Beck’s perfect man, all while quietly removing the obstacles that stand in their way—even if it means murder.


I walked by this book in my library, and it managed to catch my eye. I had heard through the grapevine about the show on Netflix and have almost watched it once or twice, so I was very very wary of the book. Every time I seem to pick up a hyped thriller, I always seem to be disappointed (if there are any The Girl on the Train lovers here, I’m sorry).

After about the first page of You, however, I was hooked.

I think, throughout the course of this book, it’s really hard to say there’s a definite protagonist, as the main POV is definitely from someone who you would consider antagonistic. But, I was reading the reviews on the inside cover and one of them mentioned how you can’t help but root or feel sympathy for the main character (who is clearly a “bad” guy), and I cannot help but agree.

I feel this book was a perfect balance for a thriller — there was sex, violence, mystery, and characters you could really dig your teeth into. I could not put this book down, and I read it in an amount of time that I hardly ever experience with my university, now it seems. I just found this book strangely erotic and un-put-downable.

This book is constantly keeping you on your toes, and I felt the ending was exactly the ending I could have academically and unprofessionally hoped for.

(Now, I know there’s a sequel . . . so we’ll see on what we do with that now.)

Nevertheless, if you love Dark Places by Gillian Flynn or any fast-paced thriller, I think you’ll devour this one like I did.

Rating


Have you seen the Netflix show? If you have, what did you think of it? What’s your favorite thriller? Let’s chat in the comments!

IDENTICAL by Ellen Hopkins | Review

Amazon | TBD | Goodreads

565 Pages

Do twins begin in the womb?
Or in a better place?

Kaeleigh and Raeanne are identical down to the dimple. As daughters of a district-court judge father and a politician mother, they are an all-American family—on the surface. Behind the facade each sister has her own dark secret, and that’s where their differences begin.

For Kaeleigh, she’s the misplaced focus of Daddy’s love, intended for a mother whose presence on the campaign trail means absence at home. All that Raeanne sees is Daddy playing a game of favorites—and she is losing. If she has to lose, she will do it on her own terms, so she chooses drugs, alcohol, and sex.

Secrets like the ones the twins are harboring are not meant to be kept—from each other or anyone else. Pretty soon it’s obvious that neither sister can handle it alone, and one sister must step up to save the other, but the question is—who? 


I think one of the hardest things in a book for me to get over in a novel is rape. I feel it’s a very difficult subject to write about without making me put the book down and just scream — what gives you the right? 

I had an experience like this with a novel called Push by Sapphire which infuriated me to no end by describing, in extremely graphic detail, the rape of a child. So, going into this book by one of my favorite authors, I was slightly hesitant. It was one of the only books I hadn’t read by her yet, and I almost wonder if it was because I just never got around to it or because I was nervous I would hate it.

Well, I will say, that I am very happy to report that I, in fact, did not hate this. I feel it handled the topic extremely well.

As with most of her books, this is in verse. I feel it added a certain something to the text and scenario that prose wouldn’t have been able to do. Where we would have normally had great detail of graphic scenes in prose, in fact, we just had Hopkins doing what she does best – creating amazing characters.

Also, as always, I did not see the twist coming in this one. I don’t remember where I was, but it really hits you in the face unexpectedly, in a good way.

The reason I do have to take a star away is that I feel it could have been a good forty pages longer to really explain what happened after, as I felt the ending was very rushed.

Overall, though, I really enjoyed this.

Rating:



How do you feel about novels dealing with subjects such as rape? Have you read any Ellen Hopkins? Let’s chat in the comments!

TAG | Two Truths and a Lie

Sara, my all-time favorite book blogger, tagged me in this quick, fun tag! So, here we go!

How To Participate

  • Create a post with your two bookish truths and one bookish lie – but be sure to keep it a secret so your readers can guess!
  • Reveal the lie in a spoiler at the bottom of your post (you can use this HTML code! Just change the “S” in Summary to a lowercase)

<details><Summary>Reveal the Lie</Summary>Lie Revealed</details>


Two Truths and a Lie


  • I’ve met three famous YA authors: Marissa Meyer, Holly Black, and Jay Kristoff.
  • I’ve never read a book over 1,000 pages.
  • I’ve never read a Harry Potter book.

I’m Tagging . . .

Laura | Alyssa | Megs | Angelica


Answer

Reveal the LieI’ve met three famous YA authors: Marissa Meyer, Holly Black, and Jay Kristoff. I’ve actually only met the first two! (And, no, I have no interest in reading HP; please don’t @ me XD.

Were you able to guess my lie? Let’s chat in the comments!