Month In Review // January 2016

Welcome, bookworms! You may have noticed my absence in the blogosphere lately, but hopefully I’ll be getting back to my normal schedule of posting 4-5 days a week soon! I’ve had a lot of stuff going on lately, both school-wise and swimming-wise. January has been an insanely busy month for me, but I’m hoping things will cool down a bit this month!

Things Not Bookish

  • I saw ‘The Fifth Wave’ in the theaters! I KNOW, FINALLY. It was one of my most anticipated moments going into this year, and I’m happy to say I wasn’t disappointed. Honestly, I wasn’t expecting much going into it, though- I had already looked at the ratings and reviews. Though there were some very cheesy and unrealistic moments, I thought it was a very entertaining film overall.
  • I had two major swim meets. And by ‘major,’ I mean really, really hard. My coach requires us to do every event during every season, which meant that I basically had all my hard events to complete during the month of January. My toughest events were probably the 200 butterfly, 200 breaststroke, and the mile, and I’m pretty proud of my results in all of them.
  • I reached my 100th post on this blog! I was planning on doing a post on this, but I kind of forgot about it until now. So, thank you to everyone who has supported me during my amazing (and far from over, hopefully) blogging journey! I look forward to talking books with you in the future!
  • I started my ‘A Walk Through The Middle Ages’ project in social studies! Basically, you get into groups of 4-6 people and get to choose a topic set in the Middle Ages to do your project on. Luckily, I got an amazing group, and my first choice in topic: “books and illuminated manuscripts.” Typical, I know.
  • I set a Goodreads challenge for the first time! I set my goal at 100 books, but I honestly have no idea if that’s going to work out because I’ve never consistently used Goodreads to track my progress. So far, I’m on track- but it’s still extremely stressful for me.

Best In Books

I read a total of 9 books this month! These included:

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I didn’t have any 5-star books this month, but This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales and Scarlet by Marissa Meyer both came pretty close. I also FINALLY started reading the Lunar Chronicles, and so far, I love them! I need Winter in my hands ASAP. I wasn’t a huge fan of Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy and Delicate Monsters by Stephanie Kuehn, but besides that, I think it was a solid reading month for me.

Most Popular Posts Of The Month

Clearly lists are beloved posts! I’ll definitely keep that in mind in the future!

Around The Blogosphere

Quote Of The Month

“Sometimes people think they know you. They know a few facts about you, and they piece you together in a way that makes sense to them. And if you don’t know yourself very well, you might even believe that they are right. But the truth is, that isn’t you. That isn’t you at all.”

-This Song Will Save Your Life, Leila Sales

What’s Ahead

  • I’m going on an overnight trip up at Stanford with my swim team buddies! We’ll be touring Stanford’s campus, meeting a famous swimmer, and watching an exciting college duel meet, so I’m super excited! It’s an overnight trip, so I also get to skip a day of school.
  • I’m going to the Pasadena Antiquarian Book Fair! I’m mainly doing this because of the research project I’m doing on “books & illuminated manuscripts,” but it should be super fun to look at all the medieval manuscripts and whatnot.
  • Valentine’s Day! I’m still not really sure how I’ll be celebrating it, but hopefully it will involve fluffy contemporaries and time with friends and family and plenty of food.

How was your January? What were your favorite books of the month?

Month In Review: November 2015

Hi all! Can you believe it’s almost December already?! These last few weeks have flown by for me, and it’s finally my favorite time of the year: Christmas!

3 Things That Happened In My Life This Month:

  • I met Nicola Yoon yesterday! It was completely by accident, but I’m so grateful! I went down to Pasadena yesterday with my family to do some holiday shopping, and I saw her at a bookstore and completely freaked out! I’ll be doing an event recap on this soon, so stay tuned.
  • I saw Mockingjay Part 2 with one of my friends, and it was AMAZING! And super duper intense. I did have a couple problems with it, but overall, it was pretty awesome. Review to come (hopefully….).
  • I reached 100 followers! I did a post on this here, and I’m completely overwhelmed (in the best way possible) with all you guys’ support. THANK YOU SO MUCH!

My Favorite Books This Month:

I read 8 books this month! My two favorites, by far, were:

  • Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater- WHY ON EARTH DID I NOT READ THIS SOONER?! I can’t recommend this book highly enough- if you haven’t read this yet, even if you aren’t sure about the synopsis, give it a go. I’m not guaranteeing you’ll like it, but I honestly don’t have any idea why you wouldn’t.
  • Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz- This was one of the most beautiful books I’ve read in a long time- both beautiful in writing style, and beautiful in the story and message. I would highly recommend this to anyone! My review here.

Worst rating I gave a book this month?

That Summer by Sarah Dessen. I had some high expectations for it, but I didn’t get into it at all, so I stopped reading it halfway through.

Cover love?

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes. I tend to love super simplistic covers, and this beauty was no exception. I also love the font and color scheme.

Quote of the Month:

“And then I opened my eyes and it was just Grace and me – nothing anywhere but Grace and me – she pressing her lips together as though she were keeping my kiss inside her, and me, holding this moment that was as fragile as a bird in my hands.”  -Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater

Book Haul!

The following is a picture of the books I’ve acquired this month:

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  • That Summer by Sarah Dessen (Read- DNF)
  • This Lullaby by Sarah Dessen (Not read)
  • Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein (Not read)
  • A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini (Not read)
  • And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini (Not read)
  • The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini (Not read)
  • My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult (Not read)
  • Me Before You by Jojo Moyes (Currently reading)
  • Graceling by Kristin Cashore (Not read)
  • Carry On by Rainbow Rowell (Purchased for my Secret Santa- not read)
  • Find A Way by Diana Nyad (Read)
  • The Watchmaker of Filigree Street by Natasha Pulley (Not read)

 

Bookish News:

Most Popular Posts This Month:

My Personal Favorite Posts This Month:

3 Things I’m Looking Forward To Next Month:

  • I’m getting a new bookshelf! I mean….hopefully. At first it was going to be built in January or February, but the builder said that he MIGHT be able to squeeze it in before Christmas….so I guess we’ll just have to wait and see. Anyway, it’s supposed to be huge and take up an entire wall of my room!
  • MY BIRTHDAY! I’m turning 13 on the 13th of December! Hoping for lots of books and friends and good food… 🙂
  • Yup, you guessed it. CHRISTMAS! I do love getting in the holiday spirit, and Christmas is my favorite holiday!

What was your absolute favorite book of this month? What are you looking forward to next month? What is your most anticipated release of 2016? I’d love to hear your thoughts! 🙂

Month In Review: October 2015

Hi all! I got a bit lazy this week and didn’t post the Monthly Recap at the end of the month like I normally do, so I’m combining it with my Weekly Recap.

3 Things That Happened In My Life Last Month:

  • I reached 100 followers! I know that this is nothing compared to other bloggers I know, but it made me really happy, considering the fact that I’ve only been blogging for a couple months. I’ll be writing a post on this soon (hopefully tomorrow), but to sum it up: You guys rock!
  • I met Patrick Ness at a book signing! You can view my event recap here.
  • Halloween happened! Normally I’m not a huge fan of Halloween because I’m not a huge party person, but I had a lot of fun this time! My friends came over for a Halloween party at my house, and then we went trick-or-treating together. Oh, and we also got chased for two blocks by a clown with a chainsaw, which was quite terrifying.

2 Things I’m Looking Forward To This Month:

  • Mockingjay Part 2 is being released! GUYS, SERIOUSLY. How amazing was Mockingjay Part 1?!! THAT ENDING. Our year of waiting is almost up, and I’m SO EXCITED!
  • Thanskgiving! ‘Cause, you know, it’s only my second favorite holiday EVER. (And being such a big fan of holidays, that’s kinda a big deal, okay?) I get to eat lots of food and wear fuzzy socks and READ!

My Favorite Book Last Month:

I read 9 books this month! I usually read more than that – usually about 15, actually, but I’ve been pretty busy lately. And as the saying goes, “it’s not about the quantity, it’s about the quality.” And I did have some good quality books this month! My favorite book by far was A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness. His writing is so gorgeous, and his books are probably some of the most unique and original books I’ve ever read. I also really enjoyed Anna Dressed In Blood by Kendare Blake (my review).

Worst rating I gave to a book last month? I had a really good reading month, so the worst rating would have to by Outspoken by Lora Richardson, which was still a solid 3 stars (my review).

Cover love? This would have to go to The Knife of Never Letting Go. I absolutely love the simplistic design and font, and what’s inside of the book is just as beautiful!

Quote of the Month:

“You do not write your life with words…You write it with actions. What you think is not important. It is only important what you do.”  -A Monster Calls, Patrick Ness

Book Haul!

Earlier today, I decided to check out if there were any bookstores near me other than the ones I knew, and there were so many! I got to visit this adorable little used bookstore that I had never known about. All the books were absolutely gorgeous, so I couldn’t help buying two! I’m not normally much of a Classics girl, though I have read and enjoyed a few, but they didn’t have any YA books so I had to settle for these beauties. 😉

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Pride & Prejudice and Emma by Jane Austen! Aren’t they gorgeous? They’re in amazing condition, and they were only $10 each! Seriously, remind me to go to used bookstores more often! XD

Most Popular Posts Last Month:

My Personal Favorite Posts Last Month:

Around The Blogosphere:

SO! Let’s talk! What was your favorite read of October? What are you planning to read this month? Please, tell me! Oh, and good luck to all the NaNoers out there! Will you be participating in any read-a-thons or bookish events this month? Let me know in the comments! 🙂

Month In Review: September 2015

Hi guys! This month has gone by so fast for me, and I can’t believe it’s (almost) October already!

A HUGE thanks to everyone who has supported me in my first couple months in blogging, I couldn’t have gotten anywhere near where I am now without you guys! *hugs you all*

3 Things That Happened In My Life This Month:

  1. I had my 1-month blogoversary! My experience with blogging so far has been so fun! Once again, hugs to everyone who has made my experience as a newbie blogger so amazing. ❤
  2. I changed the theme of my blog. Since I’m still a pretty new blogger, I’ve been playing with the design of my blog a lot. I still might make some small changes, but probably nothing very big, because I like how it’s looking overall!
  3. I cleaned out and organized my bookshelf! In rainbow order! And it looks gorgeous. With the exception of the fact that, you know, I don’t have nearly enough books.
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Ain’t it preeeeetty?

3 Things I’m Looking Forward To Next Month:

  • Participating in Dewey’s 24-hour read-a-thon! I’ve never done a read-a-thon before, so I’m super excited!
  • Meeting Patrick Ness at his book signing for The Rest of Us Just Live Here. I read More Than This this month (my review) and loved it, so I’m really excited to get my hands on TRoUJLH!
  • Halloween! My plan is to read a bunch of scary books, eat lots of candy, and dress up as a book character that none of my friends have ever heard of. SERIOUSLY, IT DOESN’T GET ANY BETTER THAN THAT.

My Favorite Books This Month:

I had a great reading month, despite the fact that I had an embarrassingly low number of books read, 6. However, I absolutely LOVED all of them, so I’d still consider that a great reading month. Since I enjoyed them all immensely, I’m not going to torture myself into picking my favorite ones.

I read:

  • Audrey, Wait! by Robin Benway- I loved this book sooooo much! It’s hilarious and adorable, and all the characters are so fun and quirky. I want to be besties with Audrey and Victoria, and I want to marry James. NEW BOOK BOYFRIEND ALERT!!!
  • More Than This by Patrick Ness- GUYS. This book. Is amazing. Just read it, okay? Okay. Find my review here.
  • Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson- I now understand why everyone raves about this book so much. Because it is ah-mazing. And I (surprisingly) sobbed my eyeballs out, which in my eyes, makes it a good book. Just do me a favor and read it, pretty please?
  • Volition by Lily Paradis (reread)- This book is so underrated. It’s dark. It’s heartbreaking. It’s unlike anything I’ve ever read before. It’s one of those books that make you relate, reflect, and think about what a huge difference a seemingly small action can make. I honestly can’t recommend this book highly enough.
  • Hollow City by Ransom Riggs- This book wasn’t amazing like the first book, but I still really enjoyed it. I’d give it a solid 4 stars.
  • The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater- Okay, I haven’t actually finished this book, but I’m a good 3/4 of the way through it. So I’m just going to count it. Because the number of books I’ve read this month is already depressing enough.

Worst rating I gave to a book this month? As I’ve mentioned, I had a great reading month, so the worst rating I’ve given out would be 4 stars to Hollow City. Which was still amazing.

Favorite cover? All the books I read this month had really pretty covers, but I’m going to have to go with Volition.

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Favorite Quotes This Month:

“All I knew was that I couldn’t have him right now. It was impossible. Could I have him in a year? Two years? Five years? Ten years? I didn’t know. All I knew was that although the universe was pushing us together, it was also pushing us apart.” -Volition, Lily Paradis

“You can be noble and brave and beautiful and still find yourself falling.” -Love Letters to the Dead, Ava Dellaira

“Brave isn’t something you are. It’s something you do.” -The Last Time We Say Goodbye, Cynthia Hand

“And I’ve realized that the Beatles got it wrong. Love isn’t all we need—love is all there is.” -Second Chance Summer, Morgan Matson

Most Popular Posts This Month:

My Personal Favorite Posts This Month:

Around The Blogosphere:

What are you planning to read next month? Will you be participating in any read-a-thons? Bookish events? What was your favorite read of September? Let me know in the comments! 🙂

Month In Review: August 2015

I can’t believe it’s September already! August has flown by, and thanks everyone who has supported me in my first month of blogging!

For those of you who don’t know, Monthly Recap is a feature I’m starting that I will do every month. It highlights my experience in reading, blogging, and life that month.

3 Things That Happened In My Life This Month:

  1. I started school. Well, duh. Anyway, I really like it so far, and it’s a lot different from Elementary school! I already have a ton of homework, even though it’s only the second week of school. Ugh.
  2. I reached my goal of reading 10,000 pages this summer! I read 32 books and a total of 10,285 pages.
  3. I started my blog! Okay, I’m just going to state the obvious: I completed my first month of blogging! It has been so much fun, and I can’t wait to continue. Hugs to everyone who supported and read my blog posts. Thanks so much guys! 🙂

My Favorite Books This Month:

I read 14 books this month! I gave out a lot of high ratings, which I think is because I’m getting better about picking out reads. I’m extremely picky when it comes to picking out new books.

My top 4 were:

  1. Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

I loved this book so, so, so much! It’s so adorable! I loved every aspect of it, and I definitely recommend it.

2. Just One Day by Gayle Forman

This is one of the best books I’ve read in a long time! It was so inspiring and moving for me.

3. Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

This book was so awesome! The world-building was incredible, and it’s crazy that Sarah J. Maas created a world so rich and complex. I now understand why I’m, like, the last person on earth to ever to read this book.

4. Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock by Matthew Quick

This book was set over a 24-hour period, and it describes the moments leading up to when Leonard planned to kill his former best friend and then himself. I really enjoyed it and recommend it.

Worst rating I gave to a book this month? Ugh. Definitely Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry. I hated everything about it! If I could give this book zero stars I would. I was so disappointed, because there was so much hype surrounding it. I don’t mean to offend, Katie McGarry fans!

Favorite Cover? Either Life Unaware or Falling Into Place. They’re both so pretty!

My Favorite Quotes This Month:

“Stars, too, were time travelers. How many of those ancient points of light were the last echoes of suns now dead? How many had been born but their light not yet come this far? If all the suns but ours collapsed tonight, how many lifetimes would it take us to realize we were alone? I had always known the sky was full of mysteries—but not until now had I realized how full of them the earth was.” -Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children, Ransom Riggs

“You could rattle the stars,” she whispered. “You could do anything, if only you dared. And deep down, you know it, too. That’s what scares you most.” -Throne of Glass, Sarah J. Maas

“She wished to be happy, and fell asleep with an entire sky above her.” -Falling Into Place, Amy Zhang

“She finally figure out that she, Liz Emerson, was the equal and opposite reaction. She was the consequence.” -Falling Into Place, Amy Zhang

So…what did you think of my first Monthly Recap? I’ll be adding more to it next month, obviously, like my most popular posts, my personal favorite posts, etc. How was your summer? Did you read any good books that I should know about? Let me know in the comments!