Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Teaesr Tuesday [June 28]

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jenn of Books and a Beat. All you have to do is grab your current read, open to a random page, and share two teaser sentences (that don't give too much away).

This week's teaser:

"Hello," I said. "This is Apollo."
"The god Apollo," I said, thinking perhaps I should be more specific. "Is Percy Home?"

The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan

Monday, June 27, 2016

2016 Reading Goals [check in]

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Books read: 18/25
Pages read: 6,299
Goals completed: 3/6

1. Read 25 books: I already knocked out 18 books toward this goal, so I am sure I will be able to complete 25 by September or October. I find it a little sad that it has taken me so much of the year just to complete 18 books when, in 2014, I was easily able to meet a goal of 70, but my reading slumps and busy work schedule has made reading that many books a bit unrealistic.

2. Read three books that have been on my physical TBR shelf for at least six months: This goal used to be one that I struggled the most with but, for some reason, I kicked this challenge's butt this year. So far, I have read eight books toward this goal, and I anticipate that the number will keep growing throughout the second half of 2016.

3. Reread three books (not including Percy Jackson): I did awesome with this goal as well, completing it in the first four months of the year. I am fairly certain I will be rereading the first two Harry Potter books at the end of the summer but, other than that, I am not yet sure if any other books will go toward this challenge.

4. Finish five series/trilogies: As of a few days ago, I have been able to finish three series, so I have no doubt I will be able to complete this goal within the next few months as well.

5. Reread the Percy Jackson series: So far, I have only reread The Lightning Thief, so I definitely need to step up my game and make it a point to pick up the others before the year comes to an end. I should be okay, since there are only four books left; I've told myself not to panic unless I have made no progress with this goal by October.

6. Listen to an audiobook: I listened to my first audio book in March! It is not something I will make a habit of doing, particularly because I found it very difficult to find time to listen to it, but it was definitely an interesting experience and I can see the appeal.

How are you guys doing on your 2016 reading goals?

Friday, June 24, 2016

Weekend TBR [June 24-26]


I finally finished The Young Elites! I did have a few problems with it but, overall, it was very enjoyable and I am glad to finally have it off of my TBR.

Because I started working full-time, I haven't had much time to pick up any books these last two weeks because I have been scrambling around, trying to do homework, Youtube/blog stuff, taking care of my rabbits, and keeping up with cleaning. However, I was lucky enough to get a three day weekend this week, and while most of it will be spent at a wedding/doing homework/cleaning, I am hoping to get some reading done as well! Since I was sent this book for review, my main priority is to hopefully finish Flipping the Scales by Pete Tarsi. I am currently about 73 pages into it and it seems like a quick read, so I would definitely like to get that done.

Over the weekend, I would also like to continue working on The One as well. I didn't particularly like the first two books in the series, but this one has been on my TBR forever, and I would like to get through it so I can be done with it; particularly because I do not plan on reading the companions/continuations. I doubt I will be able to finish it this weekend, but it would be nice to get a little further.

What are you reading this weekend?

The Sims Book TAG!

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Currently Loving [June 23]

♡ Music

Home by Gabrielle Aplin

♡ Movie



♡ Books

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
♡ Youtube





Neutorgena Beach Defense Sunscreen (spray)

Dove "Nourished Beauty" Dry Spray

OGX B5 Shampoo + OGX Coconut Water Conditioner

What are you guys loving?

Monday, June 20, 2016

Review Mash-up! [2]


Author: Erin Morgenstern
Series: N/A
Publisher: Doubleday
Release Date: September 13, 2011
Pages: 512
Format: Paperback
Average Rating: 4.02
My Rating: 5.0

The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it, no paper notices plastered on lampposts and billboards. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Beyond the smoke and mirrors, however, a fierce competition is under way--a contest between two young illusionists, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood to compete in a "game" to which they have been irrevocably bound by their mercurial masters. Unbeknownst to the players, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. (from Goodreads)
» Review «

Two of my 2016 reading goals were completed by picking up The Night Circus a few months ago. The first was my rereading goal; I had wanted to reread three books this year, and The Night Circus was the final of those three. Go me! The second goal was to listen to an audiobook—something I have never experienced before—and so I decided what better book to listen to than one I have read before and absolutely loved? And so, I borrowed The Night Circus from my local library. Listening to an audiobook is definitely not my favorite way to read. I constantly forgot/never had time to pick it up, and had to renew it twice before I was able to finally finish it in May. I can see where it would be useful during a car ride or while waiting in line somewhere, but I think I will stick to physical books, thanks.

Overall, I found The Night Circus to be just as beautiful, magical and captivating as I did the first time around. The characters and story were so complex; I am absolutely in awe over Erin Morgenstern's ability to weave such a beautiful tale. This book was the one that started my love of circus books and pushed me into trying more adult novels, so it was great to revisit it and reminisce.

I will say that the timeline got a little confusing with the audiobook because you can't flip back to the date like you can while reading the physical book, but I still absolutely loved it and anticipate that I will continue to pick it up every few years for another read.

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 Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Series: The Raven Cycle #2
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Release Date: September 17, 2013
Pages: 437
Format: Hardcover
Average Rating: 4.28
My Rating: 4.0

Ronan Lynch has secrets. Some he keeps from others. Some he keeps from himself.One secret: Ronan can bring things out of his dreams. Ronan is one of the raven boys—a group of friends, practically brothers, searching for a dead king named Glendower, who they think is hidden somewhere in the hills by their elite private school, Aglionby Academy. The path to Glendower has long lived as an undercurrent beneath town. But now, like Ronan's secrets, it is beginning to rise to the surface—changing everything in its wake. (from Goodreads)

» Review «

I finally finished it, guys! For three months, I had lost the desire to pick this particular book up; not because it was bad or anything, don't get me wrong—it was actually quite good—but because I fell into a horrendous reading slump and had trouble picking up/reading everything.

I did finally finish it in May, however, and it was spectacular. Maggie Stiefvater's writing is brilliant, and I feel like this series will just keep getting better. I love the story and most of the characters though I could not stand Adam. Ronan was someone I was not expecting to like as much as I did/do. I was indifferent toward him in the first book, but I loved his POV in The Dream Thieves. I feel like we're kindred souls, he and I.

The plot was very complex and interesting. Maggie writes in a way that is very metaphorical and flowery; she doesn't really come right out and say stuff, which is fine, but did get a little confusing. Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed The Dream Thieves, despite my three-month break, and cannot wait to pick up book three!

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Author: Amy Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
Series: The Illuminae Files #1
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Release Date: October 20, 2015
Pages: 599
Format: Hardcover
Average Rating: 4.30
My Rating: 5.0

This morning, Kady thought breaking up with Ezra was the hardest thing she’d have to do. This afternoon, her planet was invaded. The year is 2575, and two rival megacorporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to fight their way onto an evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit.

But their problems are just getting started. A deadly plague has broken out and is mutating, with terrifying results; the fleet's AI, which should be protecting them, may actually be their enemy; and nobody in charge will say what’s really going on. As Kady hacks into a tangled web of data to find the truth, it's clear only one person can help her bring it all to light: the ex-boyfriend she swore she'd never speak to again.
(from Goodreads)

» Review «

Oh, man. Where to begin.

Generally, books are told through the POV of a character, which allows the readers to connect to the story through their eyes. Since this book was told through case-files, emails, chats and surveillance footage, I had a very difficult time getting into the story at first. It took about a hundred pages, but after that, I was hooked! I honestly adored every single thing about this book, which is hilarious to me, considering how I used to hate Science Fiction. So many things were happening, which made everything extremely tense and I could not put the book down because the twists and turns kept me turning the pages well into the night.

The two main characters, Ezra and Kady, were great; they were funny, easy to like, and the romantic feelings (or lack of) didn't feel like it was pushy or in-my-face, though it could have easily been overbearing. There were a lot of other characters to keep track of, which became a little confusing at times, but I really enjoyed the individual stories and how they all connected together. I also loved, loved, loved the parts with the AI! Overall, the story was told in a very unique and beautiful way, the writing was great, and I cannot wait to find out what happens next!

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Author: Kass Morgan
Series: The 100 #3
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Release Date: February 24, 2015
Pages: 340
Format: Paperback
Average Rating: 3.69
My Rating: 3.0

Weeks after landing on Earth, the Hundred have managed to create a sense of order amidst their wild, chaotic surroundings. But their delicate balance comes crashing down with the arrival of new dropships from space. It’s time for the Hundred to come together and fight for the freedom they’ve found on Earth, or risk losing everything—and everyone—they love. (from Goodreads)

» Review «

I feel like this series had a lot of untapped potential. A consistent complaint of mine was that there was too much romance and far too little action, and that remains true of the third and final book in The 100 series, Homecoming. The ground was left basically unexplored; I would have loved to see more  run-down, crumbling buildings and the other destruction left behind by the cataclysm. Even Mount Weather would have been awesome to explore, but instead we only had brief glimpses of the character's surroundings. Most of the time, the plot focused on the romance, adding arguments and deaths for shock value. As someone who cannot stand Insta!Love and prefers minimal, slow-burning romances, this was not something I was into.

Each of the characters were basically the same person and every single romance was similar. There was no depth for me, nothing to grab a hold of or connect to, which made the reading process very frustrating. Decisions were made that didn't really make any sense, scenes moved too fast, and I was left with a lot of questions. Though this was the final book, I feel like things were left hanging and that we never really got any real, concrete answers. What happens next??  It was not a very strong conclusion at all but, in retrospect, it was better than I thought it would be, considering the first two books. I did still love Bellamy's character and there were moments (mostly involving Bellamy) that elicited a chuckle out of me. I definitely prefer the TV show.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday [June 14]

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. Each week they update their blog with a list of ten things that have to do with a predetermined topic.

This week's topic is: Most anticipated releases for the second half of the year.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Weekend TBR [June 10-12]

My goal is to get a little farther in The Young Elites this weekend because no, I still haven't finished it yet. /fail And if I manage to get to it, I would also like to pick up:


I was sent this book for review and while there wasn't really a specific deadline attached to it, I would definitely like to get it done sometime in the next week or so! Plus, it seems like it will be a relatively quick read.

What are you guys reading?

Document Your Life | Spring 2016

Thursday, June 9, 2016

New to the TBR [June 2016]


What it is About: Two childhood friends must band together and combine their knowledge and abilities—both scientific and magical—to save their wold from destruction. 

Why I Added it: I think I heard about this from one of my Booktube friends. It was described as incredibly weird, and since that is a type of book I am drawn to, I figured I would go ahead and add it to my TBR. I am very, very intrigued by the premise!

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What it is About: On a flight home from London, two strangers, Ted and Lily, meet. Their innocent conversation suddenly takes a turn for the dangerous when jokes about Ted's unhappy marriage quickly become a plot to kill his wife.

Why I Added it: Normally this type of book wouldn't be my thing, but I read Gone Girl last year and loved it. So, in an attempt to find more interesting books outside of my comfort zone, I figured I would give this one a try. It seems suspenseful and crazy; two things I am very much into, book-wise.

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What it is About: Tella is kidnapped during the legendary, once-a-year performance called Caraval, where the audience participates in an elaborate performance that is not what it seems. In order to get Tella back, her sister Scarlett must take part in a dangerous game of love, heartbreak and magic.

Why I Added it: Um, YES PLEASE. This sounds like The Hunger Games meets The Night Circus, and I am IN

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https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21416690-the-invisible-library?from_search=true&search_version=service What it is About: Irene is a professional spy for the mysterious Library, which harvests fiction from different realities. Her mission: to retrieve a dangerous book. But when they arrive, it's already been stolen. London's underground factions seem prepared to fight to the very death to find her book.

Why I Added it: Pitched as Doctor Who but with spies, The Invisible Library was immediately added to my TBR because obviously.

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https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/727810.The_Return_of_the_King What it is About: The armies of the Dark Lord are massing as his evil shadow spreads even wider. Men, Dwarves, Elves and Ents unite forces as Frodo and Sam struggle further into Mordor in their heroic quest to destroy the One Ring.

Why I Added it: I have been meaning to read this book/finish this series for a while and realized it was not yet on my Goodread's TBR.

Monday, June 6, 2016

Shelfie [June 6]

Shelf #1: Rick Riordan

At 21 books, Rick Riordan is my most read author, and probably most owned as well (do not quote me on that, though. I haven't counted my Harry Potter books in a while). Because of this, he gets an entire shelf dedicated to his work! I was first introduced to his Percy Jackson series through the release of the movie, and it was basically love at first... page. From there, I read the Kane Chronicles, moved on to the Heroes of Olympus, and recently picked up the first book in the Magnus Chase series as well. I have yet to read his newest book, but it is definitely at the top of my TBR!

Thursday, June 2, 2016

May, in Photographs

This month I explored a park, my mom and I stumbled across a beautiful wooded part of our town, and I finally created a Snapchat!

Summer TBR!