December Reads

Hello lovelies! I hope you’ve all had a marvelous December and enjoyed the holidays. This month really flew by, didn’t it? This was my first year celebrating Christmas with Tom in our own apartment (even though we spent most of the actual holiday at our families’ houses), which was fantastic. You can read more about it over on Bookalicious Mama, where I wrote a guest post about trying to uphold old traditions and create new ones while going through major life changes.

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Our cozy apartment, decorated for Christmas!

Although our plans for Christmas were complicated by my having to work from home (I work as a content publisher, making the news slides for sites like charter.net, and news has to be published every day!), there were some really nice moments of the day. I have to brag a little about the awesome bookish gifts I received: a set of coasters and two shirts from Out of Print, the Read poster from my Holiday Gift Guide, and a pillow printed with the Albus Dumbledore quote, “It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live.” They’re all so perfect! My people know me well.

Now on to the reading recap! Continue reading

A Holiday-icious Guest Post

13 Days of Holiday-icious

Hello lovelies! Just popping in for a quick moment to let you know I’m guest posting over at Bookalicious Mama for her fabulous 13 Days of Holiday-icious event today! Head on over to read my ramblings about trying to make new traditions while holding onto old ones my first Christmas living with my boyfriend!

Best Books of 2013

long banner It’s that time of year again! Time to reflect on the last year and set goals for the coming year. I read some really fantastic books this year, and I would like to share some of my favorites! I posted my favorite backlist books of 2013 a few days ago, and today I have my favorite frontlist titles*!

There were a lot of excellent releases this year, and it was hard to narrow down my list! All but one of the books on this list are by authors I hadn’t read before, and almost half of them are debut novels. I have definitely found some authors into whose backlists I can’t wait to dive and authors whose careers I will be eagerly following! Continue reading

Best Backlist Books of 2013

best backlist banner I read some pretty awesome books that were published this year (list to come once I finish The Goldfinch — ha!), but I also read a lot of fantastic backlist books, too. I love dipping into older titles, whether they’re classics that I want to read as part of my literary self-education or more recent books that people are still talking about years after their publication. It’s actually one of my resolutions for 2014 to accept fewer books for review and take more time to read older titles; they’re really piling up on my bookshelf!

Withouth further ado, my favorite backlist books of 2013! Continue reading

Book Review & Giveaway: Perfect by Rachel Joyce

Book Review: Burial Rights by Hannah KentPERFECT
by Rachel Joyce

Fiction
Random House; Jan. 14, 2014
Hardcover; 386 pages
Source: TLC Book Tours

On a sticky summer day in 1972, two seconds were added to time. The day that the seconds were added began like any other, with Byron Hemmings getting ready for school. However, when his mother Diana decides to drive him and his sister to school by a different route from usual, a life-changing chain of events is set into motion. In one careless moment, as the two seconds are being added, something terrible happens, and Byron is the only one to notice.

He eventually confides in his friend, James, and his mother. For the rest of the summer, they grapple with what happened, trying to deal with the guilt they feel. They must also deal with Byron’s father, a banker who works in London and only comes home to their house in the country on weekends. A controlling, unpleasant man, he stifles the once free-spirited Diana and dampens the entire environment of their home. Continue reading

Book Review: Mountainfit by Meera Lee Sethi

Book Review: Burial Rights by Hannah KentMOUNTAINFIT
by Meera Lee Sethi

Non-Fiction
CCLaP Publishing; Apr 2012
E-book; 57 pages
Source: Received from publisher for review

“We travel, some of us forever, to seek other states, other lives other souls,” Sethi quotes Anais Nin at the very beginning of this book, adding, “What you are reading was supposed to be a book about birds, but it is about this, too.”

In 2011, Meera Lee Sethi finds herself volunteering at a small bird observatory in western Sweden. Although at first she feels like an awkward city slicker, she grows to love the daily routines, trekking through the mountains to visit bird mating grounds called leks, tracking birds tagged with geolocators, observing nests, and recording data. Continue reading

Top Ten New-to-Me Authors of 2013

Happy Tuesday lovelies! Like a true blue book nerd, I love a good list. This week for Top Ten Tuesday, the folks over at The Broke and the Bookish ask bloggers to list the top ten authors they read for the first time in 2013. Most of the books I’ve read this year were written by authors I hadn’t read before (43 out of 60), so I have a nice big pool to draw from!

ttt new to me Continue reading

Book Review: The Reason I Jump by Naoki Higashida

Book Review: Burial Rights by Hannah KentTHE REASON I JUMP
by Naoki Higashida
Translated by David Mitchell and K.A. Yoshida

Non-Fiction
Random House; Aug. 2013
Hardcover: 176 pages
Source: Purchased

Written by a thirteen-year-old boy with Autism, The Reason I Jump takes readers into the minds of people who live with this often misunderstood disorder. I bought a copy of this book after hearing a bookseller at Fountain Bookstore rave about it, and I thought it was a fascinating little book.

Naok is unable to speak his ideas clearly, so he uses an alphabet grid (a method of nonvocal communication) to convey his thoughts, which his helper transcribes. Using this method of writing, he answers the questions many people have about what is like to be autistic. He uses a question-and-answer format to address such questions as:

  • Why do people with autism talk so loudly and weirdly?
  • Why do you ask the same questions over and over?
  • Why don’t you make eye contact when you’re talking?
  • Why do you clap your fingers and hands in front of your face?
  • Why do you repeat certain acts again and again? Continue reading

The Great Harry Potter Re-Read: Half-Blood Prince

hp re-read 6It’s been a great journey, but I finished my Great Harry Potter Re-Read just before Thanksgiving! However, I’ve been super lazy about writing about the last two books. I procrastinated on my write-up of the sixth book, and now that I’ve finished the whole series, I haven’t felt like going back and writing about it. I planned on just doing a combination post on the sixth and seventh books, but it turns out I have a lot more to say than I thought! So you get two posts after all, you lucky ducks!

As a reminder, the plot of the book goes something like this (spoiler spoiler spoiler): Continue reading