Beat the Backlist Sign-Up Post

Friends, I have made an important decision: I am participating in the 2019 Beat the Backlist challenge, hosted by Novel Knight! The goal of this challenge is to knock some backlist titles off of your TBR list, with backlist this year being defined as any book published in 2018 or earlier. I have A LOT of backlist books, including finished copies, ARCs, and eARCs, that I have been meaning to read FOREVER, so this seems like the perfect challenge to participate in this year. My goal is to read 1-2 backlist titles per month.

I have way more than 12 backlist titles to read, but since I definitely want to read at least 1 backlist book per month, here are 12 backlist books I hope to read this year:

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For Angel Rahimi, life is only about one thing: The Ark – a pop-rock trio of teenage boys who are currently taking the world by storm. Being part of The Ark’s fandom has given her everything – her friendships, her dreams, her place in the world.

Jimmy Kaga-Ricci owes everything to The Ark too. He’s their frontman – and playing in a band is all he’s ever dreamed of doing. It’s just a shame that recently everything in his life seems to have turned into a bit of a nightmare.

Because that’s the problem with dreaming – eventually, inevitably, real life arrives with a wake-up call. And when Angel and Jimmy are unexpectedly thrust together, they will discover just how strange and surprising facing up to reality can be.

why I want to read this book: Queer! And fandom! And music!! And hype!

 

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Raised in a small village surrounded by vast forests, Liba and Laya have lived a peaceful sheltered life – even if they’ve heard of troubling times for Jews elsewhere. When their parents travel to visit their dying grandfather, the sisters are left behind in their home in the woods.

But before they leave, Liba discovers the secret that their Tati can transform into a bear, and their Mami into a swan. Perhaps, Liba realizes, the old fairy tales are true. She must guard this secret carefully, even from her beloved sister.

Soon a troupe of mysterious men appear in town and Laya falls under their spell-despite their mother’s warning to be wary of strangers. And these are not the only dangers lurking in the woods…

The sisters will need each other if they are to become the women they need to be – and save their people from the dark forces that draw closer.

why I want to read this book: I love magical realism plus it’s JEWISH.

 

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Beyond the Empire and within it, the threat of war looms ever larger.

The Blood Shrike, Helene Aquilla, is assailed on all sides. Emperor Marcus, haunted by his past, grows increasingly unstable, while the Commandant capitalizes on his madness to bolster her own power. As Helene searches for a way to hold back the approaching darkness, her sister’s life and the lives of all those in the Empire hang in the balance.

Far to the east, Laia of Serra knows the fate of the world lies not in the machinations of the Martial court, but in stopping the Nightbringer. But while hunting for a way to bring him down, Laia faces unexpected threats from those she hoped would aid her, and is drawn into a battle she never thought she’d have to fight.

And in the land between the living and the dead, Elias Veturius has given up his freedom to serve as Soul Catcher. But in doing so, he has vowed himself to an ancient power that will stop at nothing to ensure Elias’s devotion–even at the cost of his humanity.

why I want to read this book: Um, duh, because I LOVE AN EMBER IN THE ASHES!! I can’t believe I haven’t read this one yet. I got nervous and then also can’t decide if I should reread A TORCH AGAINST THE NIGHT before I read it because I’ve forgotten everything.

 

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Three years ago, Tanner Scott’s family relocated from California to Utah, a move that nudged the bisexual teen temporarily back into the closet. Now, with one semester of high school to go, and no obstacles between him and out-of-state college freedom, Tanner plans to coast through his remaining classes and clear out of Utah.

But when his best friend Autumn dares him to take Provo High’s prestigious Seminar—where honor roll students diligently toil to draft a book in a semester—Tanner can’t resist going against his better judgment and having a go, if only to prove to Autumn how silly the whole thing is. Writing a book in four months sounds simple. Four months is an eternity.

It turns out, Tanner is only partly right: four months is a long time. After all, it takes only one second for him to notice Sebastian Brother, the Mormon prodigy who sold his own Seminar novel the year before and who now mentors the class. And it takes less than a month for Tanner to fall completely in love with him.

why I want to read this book: I’ve wanted to read this one since I got the eARC but somehow never got around to it? It’s queer and writerly and all the bloggers I love seem to love it so hopefully it lives up to the hype!

 

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Neil Josten is the newest addition to the Palmetto State University Exy team. He’s short, he’s fast, he’s got a ton of potential—and he’s the runaway son of the murderous crime lord known as The Butcher.

Signing a contract with the PSU Foxes is the last thing a guy like Neil should do. The team is high profile and he doesn’t need sports crews broadcasting pictures of his face around the nation. His lies will hold up only so long under this kind of scrutiny and the truth will get him killed.

But Neil’s not the only one with secrets on the team. One of Neil’s new teammates is a friend from his old life, and Neil can’t walk away from him a second time. Neil has survived the last eight years by running. Maybe he’s finally found someone and something worth fighting for.

why I want to read this book: This book is on my TBR list solely because of blogger recommendations.

 

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Black Swan meets Pretty Little Liars in this soapy, drama-packed novel featuring diverse characters who will do anything to be the prima at their elite ballet school.

Gigi, Bette, and June, three top students at an exclusive Manhattan ballet school, have seen their fair share of drama. Free-spirited new girl Gigi just wants to dance—but the very act might kill her. Privileged New Yorker Bette’s desire to escape the shadow of her ballet-star sister brings out a dangerous edge in her. And perfectionist June needs to land a lead role this year or her controlling mother will put an end to her dancing dreams forever.

When every dancer is both friend and foe, the girls will sacrifice, manipulate, and backstab to be the best of the best.

why I want to read this book: Did you SEE THE COMP TITLES????

 

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A dark enchantment blights the land.

Agnieszka loves her village, set in a peaceful valley. But the nearby enchanted forest casts a shadow over her home. Many have been lost to the Wood and none return unchanged. The villagers depend on an ageless wizard, the Dragon, to protect them from the forest’s dark magic. However, his help comes at a terrible price. A young woman must serve him for ten years, leaving all she values behind. 

Agnieszka fears her dearest friend Kasia will be picked at the next choosing, for she is everything Agnieszka is not – beautiful, graceful and brave. Yet when the Dragon comes, it is not Kasia he takes.

why I want to read this book: I’ve seen Naomi Novick around a lot on the blogosphere and want to branch out into adult books a bit more, and since I love fantasy, this seems like a good place to start, though I’ve heard her writing style can be polarizing.

 

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A contemporary novel about a girl whose high school production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream leads her to new friends—and maybe even new love.

The day of the last party of the summer, Claudia overhears a conversation she wasn’t supposed to. Now on the wrong side of one of the meanest girls in school, Claudia doesn’t know what to expect when the two are paired up to write a paper—let alone when they’re both forced to try out for the school production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

But mandatory participation has its upsides—namely, an unexpected friendship, a boy band obsession, and a guy with the best dimpled smile Claudia’s ever seen. As Claudia’s world starts to expand, she finds that maybe there are some things worth sticking her neck out for.

why I want to read this book: I loved Emma Mills’ sophomore release, THIS ADVENTURE ENDS, and have been meaning to read more by her since then!

 

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Jordan Sun is embarking on her junior year at the Kensington-Blaine Boarding School for the Performing Arts, hopeful that this will be her time: the year she finally gets cast in the school musical. But when her low Alto 2 voice gets her shut out for the third straight year—threatening her future at Kensington-Blaine and jeopardizing her college applications—she’s forced to consider nontraditional options.

In Jordan’s case, really nontraditional. A spot has opened up in the Sharpshooters, Kensington’s elite a cappella octet. Worshiped…revered…all male. Desperate to prove herself, Jordan auditions in her most convincing drag, and it turns out that Jordan Sun, Tenor 1, is exactly what the Sharps are looking for.

Jordan finds herself enmeshed in a precarious juggling act: making friends, alienating friends, crushing on a guy, crushing on a girl, and navigating decades-old rivalries. With her secret growing heavier every day, Jordan pushes beyond gender norms to confront what it means to be a girl (and a guy) in a male-dominated society, and—most importantly—what it means to be herself.

why I want to read it: Musical MC! Diverse!! Artsy school! Bisexual!! It is basically me in a book. Oh, and I loved Riley Redgate’s debut, SEVEN WAYS WE LIE. I have no idea why I’ve been putting this one off for so long.

 

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For most of her life, nineteen-year-old Juliet Emerline has subsisted – isolated by deafness – making hats in the solitude of her home. Now, she’s at risk to lose her sanctuary to Lord Nicolas Thornton, a twenty-seven-year-old mysterious and eccentric architect with designs on her humble estate. When she secretly witnesses him raging beside a grave, Juliet investigates, finding the name “Hawk” on the headstone and an unusual flower at the base. The moment Juliet touches the petals, a young English nobleman appears in ghostly form, singing a song only her deaf ears can hear. The ghost remembers nothing of his identity or death, other than the one name that haunts his afterlife: Thornton. 

To avenge her ghostly companion and save her estate, Juliet pushes aside her fear of society and travels to Lord Thornton’s secluded holiday resort, posing as a hat maker in one of his boutiques. There, she finds herself questioning who to trust: the architect of flesh and bones who can relate to her through romantic gestures, heartfelt notes, and sensual touches … or the specter who serenades her with beautiful songs and ardent words, touching her mind and soul like no other man ever can. As sinister truths behind Lord Thornton’s interest in her estate and his tie to Hawk come to light, Juliet is lured into a web of secrets. But it’s too late for escape, and the tragic love taking seed in her heart will alter her silent world forever.

why I want to read this book: I LOVED A. G. Howard’s SPLINTERED trilogy, and have been hoping to love another book by her since that series ended. I was disappointed in ROSEBLOOD and never finished it, but I’ve had this one on my shelf for a while and might read it after I read her newest book, STAIN.

 

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After book blogger Vivian Galdi’s longtime crush pretends their secret summer kissing sessions never happened, Vivian creates a list of safe crushes, determined to protect her heart.

But nerd-hot Dallas, the sweet new guy in town, sends the mission and Vivian’s zing meter into chaos. While designing software for the bookstore where Vivian works, Dallas wages a counter-mission.

Operation Replacement Crush is in full effect. And Dallas is determined to take her heart off the shelf.

why I want to read this book: Book blogger MC?!?!?!?!?!?!

 

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In a village at the edge of the wilderness of northern Russia, where the winds blow cold and the snow falls many months of the year, an elderly servant tells stories of sorcery, folklore and the Winter King to the children of the family, tales of old magic frowned upon by the church.

But for the young, wild Vasya these are far more than just stories. She alone can see the house spirits that guard her home, and sense the growing forces of dark magic in the woods… 

why I want to read it: I love magical realism, and this series seems to be getting some good reviews around the blogosphere with the third book coming out.

blogmas day 1: holiday/december tbr

Helllooooooooo and happy December/beginning of Blogmas! Today I’m tying in my monthly TBR and calling it a holiday TBR, even though none of the books are actually holiday themed, because I don’t really like or read holiday themed books, alas. My reading goal for December is to make it to 75 books for the whole year. As of the writing of this post, that means I have to read 7 more books before the end of the year. This TBR list is a mix of books coming out from late 2018-early 2019 and just books that are short so I can meet my goal.

late 2018-early 2019 books

  • The Brilliant Death | Amy Rose Capetta | October 30, 2018 – This fantasy wasn’t on my radar much until recently when it started popping up. What people seem most excited about is that it features a genderfluid character!! It’s about a girl who has the power to turn her family’s enemies into pretty objects and sounds very lush and good.
  • Enchantee | Gita Trelease | February 5, 2019 – ENCHANTEE is set during the French Revolution, only it has black magic and transformations and social climbing into the court of Versailles. I cannot wait to read this book!
  • Famous in a Small Town | Emma Mills | January 15, 2019 – I loved Emma Mills’ second book, THIS ADVENTURE ENDS, and have been meaning to read more of her books since then. This book sounds adorable, and is about a girl in a small town who tries to convince the town’s famous singer to come back.
  • Stain | A. G. Howard | January 15, 2019 – This is by far my most anticipated read of 2019. I have loved A. G. Howard’s SPLINTERED trilogy since forever, and even got a tattoo inspired by the main character’s tattoo in the second book. I didn’t like ROSEBLOOD and never finished it, but I have VERY high hopes for this book. It’s a Princess and the Pea retelling, about a girl named Lyra (favorite name ever) who can’t speak or make a sound, who has to pass a series of tests in order to win her betrothed prince back and save her kingdom.

 

short books

  • 9 Days and 9 Nights | Katie Cotugno – This sequel to 99 DAYS, which was one of my favorite books the year it came out despite its controversial subject matter of cheating, which people tend to hate reading about who are not me, was one of my most anticipated reads this year, but…I haven’t read it yet. Because I am me and I am terrible. But I will! I really want to continue Molly’s story, and hopefully see if she has learned her lesson…
  • Foolish Hearts | Emma Mills – I was looking for short books, plus, as previously noted, I have been really wanting to read more Emma Mills, so the fact that this is a short book is a good excuse to do it. FOOLISH HEARTS is about a girl who accidentally overhears a conversation she shouldn’t have between the school’s power couple (a lesbian couple woohoo!) and is now on the wrong side of some mean girls.
  • With the Fire on High | Elizabeth Acevedo | May 7, 2019 – Elizabeth Acevedo’s new book is about a girl who loves to cook, and right with that premise, I am sold. I love books about cooking, and I’m sure I’ll love this one, too.
  • If You’re Out There | Katy Loutzenhiser | March 5, 2019 – Zan is crushed when her best friend Priya ghosts her after moving away, but starts to think maybe Priya CAN’T talk to her because there’s more going on when she finds a weird clue in a selfie taken by Priya. I am so into this thriller and really want to read this ASAP.
  • The Last Unicorn | Peter S. Beagle – I got the special edition of this book from Unicorn Crate even though I haven’t read it because UNICORNS. It’s about a unicorn who goes on an adventure away from her safe lilac wood in order to discover if she’s really the last of her kind.

 

Etymology: Magic

Since I’m starting to intro some witchy-type postings to this blog, I thought I’d introduce something I’ve been doing on my Tumblr, which is the etymology of different words relating to magic/witchcraft/related things. For those who don’t know, etymology is the study of the origin of words, basically looking at where words come from and the history of where they come from.

Here’s the etymology of magic:

  • Came about in the late 14th century
  • from Old French magique, late Latin magice, Old Persian magush, and Greek magike
  • In Greek, “magike” related to the Magi, who were ancient Persian priests who apparently wore white, were vegetarian, and lived austere lives
  • In the Middle Ages there was “natural magic,” which was not then considered a sin, as it could be explained by science and was seen as a manipulation of natural forces

 

There is also apparently the word “magick,” which was coined by Aleister Crowley, but he was a racist, misogynist, and anti-Semetic, so witches in general don’t really like him much. According to Crowley, there were four major types of magick that science could not explain away, namely ritual, environmental, astral, and evocative magic. That’s all I’m going to say about him though because the few quotes from him I’ve read are really terrible and prejudiced, so he doesn’t deserve the time of day.

Sex and Spoopy // 2 queer reviews

I read a lot of queer books because that is my jam and I am queer, and the past couple months have been no exception. Recently, I read JACK OF HEARTS and SAWKILL GIRLS, so I will be talking about both of those briefly today.

 

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Meet Jack Rothman. He’s seventeen and loves partying, makeup and boys – sometimes all at the same time. His sex life makes him the hot topic for the high school gossip machine. But who cares? Like Jack always says, ‘it could be worse’.

He doesn’t actually expect that to come true.

But after Jack starts writing an online sex advice column, the mysterious love letters he’s been getting take a turn for the creepy. Jack’s secret admirer knows everything: where he’s hanging out, who he’s sleeping with, who his mum is dating. They claim they love Jack, but not his unashamedly queer lifestyle. They need him to curb his sexuality, or they’ll force him.

As the pressure mounts, Jack must unmask his stalker before their obsession becomes genuinely dangerous…

…….

Outside of WILDCARD, JACK OF HEARTS was probably my most anticipated book for the second half of 2018. It is so rare to read about sexually active queer teens, so I was very excited for that, as well as the fact that is was basically SIMON VS. meets PRETTY LITTLE LIARS. The mystery of the book and finding out who Jack’s stalker was was definitely the highlight of this book. The mystery was fun and scary but also realistic and believable, which actually made me not like it at times, but I’d say overall the mystery was the strongest aspect of the book. I thought the twist of who the stalker was was very well done and well plotted, because there were some hints but not so many that I guessed who it was. I realize that I really only like major plot twists if there seems to be a kernel of believability and it seems logical in some way, and I definitely believed the plot twist in this book.

The downside of JACK OF HEARTS was the character development. I felt like all we got to know about Jack was that he likes sex. I didn’t feel we got a lot about him outside of that. I get that the major selling point of the book is that it’s open about sex, but I’m sure Jack has other interests, and he even says that he doesn’t want that to be the only thing people know about him. And honestly, I started skipping the sex advice columns because they were too upsetting or graphic for me. I am not a person who likes reading about graphic sex, and even don’t like watching TV with lots of sex in it. I don’t know why because I’m not prudish or anything in real life, but it’s just not a thing I like a lot of in my media. Still, I think this book did a good job of dealing with the sexual aspects in a healthy way for teens and other readers.

 

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Beware of the woods and the dark, dank deep.

He’ll follow you home, and he won’t let you sleep.

Who are the Sawkill Girls?

Marion: the new girl. Awkward and plain, steady and dependable. Weighed down by tragedy and hungry for love she’s sure she’ll never find.

Zoey: the pariah. Luckless and lonely, hurting but hiding it. Aching with grief and dreaming of vanished girls. Maybe she’s broken—or maybe everyone else is.

Val: the queen bee. Gorgeous and privileged, ruthless and regal. Words like silk and eyes like knives, a heart made of secrets and a mouth full of lies.

Their stories come together on the island of Sawkill Rock, where gleaming horses graze in rolling pastures and cold waves crash against black cliffs. Where kids whisper the legend of an insidious monster at parties and around campfires.

Where girls have been disappearing for decades, stolen away by a ravenous evil no one has dared to fight… until now. 

……

I was expecting to like this book a lot even though I was a bit worried it would be too scary for me since even though I used to love horror, I haven’t been that into it lately. Unfortunately, I was largely disappointed by this book. My main issue with it, strangely, was that I was just bored. The writing was pretty good itself, but the rest of the story elements just struck me as slow and dull even though exciting things happened. I think my main issue with the plot was the pacing. We know who the killer is and know what the deal with that is right away, so that took a major part of the suspense out of it for me. I felt like the rest of the story was too slow as the other characters tried to catch up to what the reader already knew.

I also wasn’t sold on really any of the characters. None of them was particularly complex other than Val, I guess: Zoe was angry about her missing friend, and Marion continued being sad and plain. The most interesting thing to me about the characters was that they were all queer. Two characters have a romance, and Zoe is asexual and has a romance. I liked that there wasn’t a clear label on Marion or Val’s sexuality, but that there was for Zoe, since there are so few ace characters in YA. Overall though, I thought their characters were pretty flat.

I was also weirded out and confused by the sentient Rock that had feelings and possibly did things to move the story along?? I’m honestly still not quite sure what the heck happened with the rock. I think it gave them powers to fight the Collector? I don’t really know. But I was not a fan of the Rock parts and started skimming them. Actually, I skimmed most of the last 20% of the book because it was too slow and I was done with it at that point. In general this book was disappointing and not what I was expecting.

#booksfortrade tips

For those who don’t know, #booksfortrade is a tag on Twitter on which people share books (okay, mostly ARCs) they have available for trade and then other people respond to the tweets with books THEY have for trade, you exchange addresses, send your books, and booksfortrade happen! It’s a really great thing that I’ve had a LOT of luck with. I’ve been fortunate enough never to fall victim to scammers (though I came close a couple of times…eek!) but they do exist, as do other annoying things people do on the tag. This is a post written to help combat some of the annoying things, as well as some general tips for using the tag.

  1. Include a photo in your post. Most people do this, and it’s because people want to be able to see what they’re trading for. A lot of people ask for pics of the back and spines of a book to over direct messages, or people put them up if there’s some damage to a book. You will most likely not get any responses for a post if you don’t put up pics.
  2. Be specific about your wishlist. If you only want priority or WL items for particular books/ARCs you’re posting, it’s totally fine to specify in your post! It’s helpful for people to know as well so someone doesn’t get their hopes up. I think being picky (to a degree) is fine, because it’s your book.
  3. Don’t bitch and moan about problems with or on the tag using #booksfortrade. If you want to complain about #booksfortrade, do it OFF THE HASHTAG. Doing it on the hashtag clogs up the feed so people can’t find actual trade posts and it’s just annoying. Nobody is forcing you to use the tag or look at the tag, so if you don’t like something about it, don’t make it harder for everyone else to use by clogging the feed, or, better yet, JUST DON’T USE IT.
  4. Do some research as to whether things are going to have ARCs or currently have ARCs. For instance, everyone is still looking for Catwoman ARCs, even though there aren’t going to be ARCs of it. People are also still looking for WICKED SAINTS ARCs, even though only bound manuscripts, which are super rare and hard to come by, are available right now and are sent out EXTREMELY selectively. It’s annoying to go through the feed and have a book you want with a wish list that only has items that don’t exist. People have used the tag to ask if there are ARCs of certain books, which is a good thing, and someone out there will know the answer, so don’t be afraid to ask if ARCs of something exist! Your bookworm friends have your back!
  5. Just mute the spam. Don’t respond to every spam account saying “please don’t use the tag.” It clogs the tag and they’re bots; they don’t know or care about using the tag. The best thing to do is just mute or block.
  6. Don’t like a post that you’re not interested in trading for. This might just be a personal pet peeve, but I hate it when someone likes every single #booksfortrade post with no intention of trading. Just…why get the person’s hopes up? This might be a little mean, but I have blocked people who consistently like my trade requests without requesting anything because it’s just obnoxious.
  7. If you don’t like #booksfortrade, try a facebook group. Personally, I’ve had a lot of luck through this one. The moderators are very good about keeping spam posts off the group, post useful tips from time to time, and are EXCELLENT at keeping up with scammers. I’ve had really excellent luck through here.
  8. Be wary of sketchy accounts. This can include things such as if an account has very few followers, or no followers you know, or doesn’t post about books at all. Also accounts that post massive amounts of books for trade or sale tend to end up being scammers, though I haven’t seen that problem for a while. Also people who say “I don’t have this yet” but are still trying to trade with an item they don’t have.
  9. If it feels sketchy, it probably is. That is honestly the best rule of thumb. If someone takes a long time to respond, or has a million requirements for mailing, or has other weird requests, those can all be red flags. The facebook group is also a good place to say hey, do you know this person and have you traded with them. Basically, if you get a bad feeling from someone, don’t take the risk, because your feeling will usually end up being right.

here and queer and sad // love and other carnivorous plants

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I’ve said I’m unsure if I want to do real book reviews on this blog, but I do want to talk about Love & Other Carnivorous Plants because REASONS. First, I really, REALLY wanted to love this book because it was one of my most anticipated books of the year. I was really excited to read a book about a girl dealing with eating issues, mental illness, and queer stuff, because that is basically me in a book. There were some things I liked in this book, but other things I didn’t quite go for, so I’m going to go over a few of those things…

  • Queer rep. I didn’t notice this while reading, but Florence Gonsalves really doesn’t place a label on Danny’s sexuality, which I think is a good thing because Danny herself is so unsure of herself and only just beginning to explore her queer parts. The queer stuff was also sad to read though, because Danny dealt with a lot of self-doubt, and her BFF, Sarah, who is kind of a jerk in general, says some homophobic things that struck me as very immature, yet also reminded me that homophobia happens at all ages, which was not exactly pleasant to be reminded of.
  • Mental illness/eating disorder rep. I thought Danny’s struggle to deal with her mental health and eating disorder were very realistic. Even if you go to an institution to deal with mental health issues, it’s not always an uphill battle once you get out. It was disheartening to see her continue to fall back into old harmful habits and struggle so much coupled with all of the other depressing things in the book, but I think it’s also important to show that recovering from mental illness is a long road and by no means a straight line.
  • Voice. Danny’s voice was for sure the strongest aspect of the story. Honestly, if her voice were less unique, biting, and interesting, I probably would’ve DNF’ed the book pretty early on because basically nothing good happens. Danny reminded me a little bit of Jane Sinner from Nice Try, Jane Sinner since they had similarly dark, gritty voices.
  • The twist. I was NOT a fan of the tragic twist that happens halfway through the novel. It seemed trite and what happened before the twist happened was just so, so cliche. I also didn’t like the character the twist happened to, so it was hard to feel anything about Danny’s struggles with it after it happened. It was just very cliche and overdramatic and seemed to take the story in a different direction than it really needed to.
  • The ending. I’m…still not quite sure what happened at the end?? I’m a fan of unresolved endings, but I like having at least a little idea of what could happen after the book ends. With Love, I have ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA. Does Danny go back to the institution? Does she stand up to her parents? Does she get better? Do she and Bugg get back together? Is Bugg even really important to her story in the end? None of these questions are even hinted at, and after an extremely depressing, unsatisfying story, the ending simply annoyed me.

 

Can someone else please read this even though I just gave it a horrible review so I can have someone to talk to about it please?

Back to Blogging // Hello Again & Goals!!

Back To Blogging

Hello internet, it’s me again! Gosh, that could be the title of a YA book, like an updated, 2018 version of Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret. Or maybe I’m just being silly. Anyway.

This is not my first go-around with blogging. Though this may be a new blog, I am by no means a new blogger. I actually started blogging in 2012 at Bibliophilia: A Love Story, which later became The Bibliotaph, which later moved to Blogger as Bookish Minis, then The Cuddly Teapot. My blogging journey has gone through many incarnations and I’ve experimented with writing about many things, but I’ve always managed to stick books in there somewhere, because that is my original blogging love.

A Word and a Whisper is definitely going to be primarily a book blog. On it, I plan to talk about books and reading, writing (if I ever get around to doing that again), librarianship, being an introvert, and being an adult dealing with anxiety.

I just realized I keep saying “I” but you have no idea who I am yet! I’m Shayna, a twenty-something from Baltimore working as a YA librarian. I basically only read YA (no sci-fi though, that is a major ew/no-no/etc for me) with the occasional dash of poetry (Amanda Lovelace and Rupi Kaur forever!!! (but mostly Amanda Lovelace because she’s better!!!)), love cats (I have two, and they’re kittens, so expect many cat pictures), and drink a lot of tea.

Other than this being an introductory post, I also want to make you suffer through some of my blogging goals that I have for this time around the blogging train:

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Some VeryVeryIncrediblyExtremely Realistic Goals

  1. Stop worrying about stats!! My sarcasm in the title of this part of the post is mainly aimed at this goal, because I have tried to do this for all of my almost 6 years of blogging and failed miserably. I have definitely quit because of stats, or lack thereof. It just gets frustrating sometimes when I feel like I’m doing all the right blogging things and am enjoying it yet nobody is reading it and therefore enjoying my enjoyment and my words, which are obviously very important.
  2. Set a blogging schedule. I have never done this because I have always been the type of blogger who thinks “oh no, if I don’t post every day of the week everyone will forget me,” even though that hasn’t really worked out for me in general. This time, I think I want to set a schedule of certain days to post so I only set myself up to post a few times a week so that way I don’t get overwhelmed or burn out.
  3. Keep up with my Goodreads challenge goal but don’t get crazy over it. Currently my goal is set to 50 again. I don’t know how other book bloggers read over 200 books a year; do you have full-time jobs? Or social lives (not that those are that important, honestly. All you need are books)? I really, REALLY want to get back up to reading 100+ books per year but at present due to stress, life, and full-time jobbing, this is probably and perhaps unrealistic.
  4. Stop comparing myself to other bloggers. Sometimes I feel like other bloggers have a more fun writing style than I do, or that their stats are better or more people comment on their posts and they actually know how to interact with people on Twitter (I do not know how to do this) and it stresses me out and I feel bad about myself and my blog. I would very much like to not do this. But we shall see.

 

Those are my main goals thus far, though I assume I will think of more as time goes on. And now, a question for you, who may or may not exist and be reading: what were some of your blogging goals when you first started blogging? How have they changed over time? What are your goals now?

 

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