Posted in book tags/memes

Top Ten Tuesday: 2019 Bookish Discoveries

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme that was created by The Broke and the Bookish, and is now being hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Every week, there’s a theme and you choose ten books that fit it. Check out upcoming topics here.


This week, it’s a little open to interpretation, and I kind of struggled haha. I couldn’t think of ten for any one category, so I’m just going to break up a list of ten total discoveries into different categories.

In no particular order, as usual…


Booktubers

The Naughty Librarian (Inspired me to try some romance novels)

Becca and The Books (I just love her personality, and her Bookopoly board inspired mine)

Codie’s Book Corner (I was drawn in by the TBR wheel and now I watch everything she posts)

How to Train Your Gavin (Inspired me to read more middle grade, and gave me a good laugh on some bad days)

New Favorite Authors

(Author names link to Goodreads)

Tessa Dare (love her historical romances, which got me hooked on romace last year)

Alyssa Cole (I am obsessed with the Reluctant Royals series omg)

Claire Legrand (I only read Sawkill Girls but I’m reading more ASAP)

My Reading Preferences/Choices

I actually do like romance, I’m just not into all romance.

I can listen to audiobooks (hurrah!), but I usually have to listen to them at 2x speed (sometimes 1.5 or 1.75, depending on the narrator and the specific book) or I can’t focus on them.

Other

CAWPILE, a rating system created by G (BookRoast) on YouTube! I found her original video about this about a year ago and I used it all year. I think I only skipped rating maybe 4-5 books by this method, and I absolutely love it! I actually had a similar rating system a few years ago, but I think mine only had five categories and I abandoned it pretty quickly because I never worked out a set range for each star rating.


I really wanted to include bloggers, but… I can not keep track of when I followed blogs :/ I just get so used to seeing them that I forget if I’ve been following them for a month or for years. With YouTube, I’m subscribed to so few channels, and I watch so little on there, that it’s easier for me to remember when I subscribed to someone. (I think I only watch videos from maybe a dozen channels with any regularity at all, but I’m following many more blogs.)


Did you make any bookish discoveries in 2019?

Posted in book tags/memes

Top 10 Tuesday: First Half of 2020 Book Releases

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme that was created by The Broke and the Bookish, and is now being hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Every week, there’s a theme and you choose ten books that fit it. Check out upcoming topics here.


This week, things are short and to the point for a change haha. I haven’t actually looked too much at 2020 book releases, but I think almost all of my 2020 most anticipated books are actually coming out during the second half of the year. That said, there are plenty of books I’m looking forward to during the first half of the year, and it was actually more challenging than I expected to narrow it down to just 10.

In publication order…


Come Tumbling Down (Wayward Children, #5)

Come Tumbling Down by Seanan McGuire (January 7th, today!)

Woven in Moonlight

Woven in Moonlight by Isabel Ibañezwas (January 7th, today!)

Riot Baby

Riot Baby by Tochi Onyebuchi (January 21st)

The Unspoken Name (The Serpent Gates, #1)

The Unspoken Name by A.K. Larkwood (February 11th)

Docile

Docile by K.M. Szpara (March 3rd)

The Winter Duke

The Winter Duke by Claire Eliza Bartlett (March 3rd)

Witches of Ash and Ruin

Witches of Ash and Ruin by E. Latimer (March 3rd)

Queen of Coin and Whispers

Queen of Coin and Whispers by Helen Corcoran (April 6th)

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes (The Hunger Games, #0)

The Ballad of Songirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins (May 19th)

How to Catch a Queen (Runaway Royals, #1)

How to Catch a Queen by Alyssa Cole (May 26th)


Are there any books you’re looking forward to during the first half of 2020?

Posted in book tags/memes

Top Ten Tuesday: (Freebie) Bookish Gift Ideas

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme that was created by The Broke and the Bookish, and is now being hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Every week, there’s a theme and you choose ten books that fit it. Check out upcoming topics here.


Originally, this post idea was going to be a list with multiple links to tons of things, but it honestly overwhelmed me and got out of hand, so I decided to pare down the idea for this week’s TTT.

From fairly inexpensive (under $15) to a little pricier ($25+), I feel like most of these could work as stand-alone gifts, but some might be more suited as stocking stuffers or small gifts to go with something else (like a book 😛 ).


Gift cards

I know, they don’t have the best reputation because they’re “impersonal” or whatever. But I personally love getting gift cards, and so does my kid, so they’re making the list. If you’re looking for specifically bookish gift cards, I highly recommend checking for an indie bookstore first. I’m not sure how many do gift cards/certificates, but it’s worth checking into.

Then, there’s Barnes & Noble or Books-a-Million in the US, BookOutlet for online ordering, Amazon, and Waterstones in the UK also offers gift cards. (Sorry to non-US folks out there, but Waterstones is the only non-US bookseller I know of that offers gift cards :/ )

Bookmarks

There are sooo many styles to choose from, but I personally recommend metal, wooden, or magnetic bookmarks. Etsy is a great place to look for unique designs (and also to support small businesses), but you can also find magnetic ones in a lot of stores (I’ve even seen them in Walmart and Target).

In a recent OwlCrate, we got a set of magnetic bookmarks from CraftedVan which I love, and I’m probably going to order from them at some point. We also got a metal bookmark from HerPaperWorld that is gorgeous.

Bookish Candles

I only have one bookish candle (from FlickTheWick, and I love it), but there are a bunch on my wishlist. Etsy is also a good place to look for these, but I’ve always heard great things about Frostbeard Studios, Wick and Fable, and Novelly Yours Candles.

Enamel Pins

I hardly know where to begin with recommending pin designers because there are so many great ones out there. I really love many designs from That’s Lovely Dear, Dust and Pages, Brio and Brandish, Icey Designs, and I’m dying to get a few pins from Alchemy & Ink (I actually do have one from designed by them for the January OwlCrate this year and it is gorgeous omg).

Book Sleeves

I don’t actually own any book sleeves, but I want one so bad! I recommend checking them out on Etsy. There are loads of designs from generically bookish to fandom specific, as well as some with simple prints, animal prints, etc. Prices I’ve seen start around $10, with $15-25 being the average (but I’ve also seem some closer to $40).

Bookish-Themed Tea

This is one I don’t have many recommendations for, but I’ve gotten tea from Adagio Teas before and they have a lot of fandom blends. Mostly it’s TV and movie stuff, but there are also bookish ones. I also really want to try some tea from Riddle’s Tea Shoppe, which I’ve only heard good things about.

Mugs

Is it just me, or do bookish people seem to really love mugs? I like pretty much all the mugs (and other merch 😛 ) from Out of Print, but this mug is more “generically” bookish, instead of fandom-specific. So, if you know they love books, but you don’t know which books, something like that, or the many designs on Etsy, could be nice options.

Reading Journals

There are a lot of reading trackers/journals out there, but before I got the OwlCrate ones (they’re planners, but multi-purpose planners that double as reading trackers/journals), I was considering some like this one and this one. I’m thinking about getting this one for my kid this year, but I’m still checking around to see if I find something I like more. (I keep coming back to that one, though, so I think it’s the winner.)

Coloring Books

Coloring books for various fandoms have become really popular, and I’m becoming just a tiny bit obsessed now that I know so many exist. I actually only have one that I picked out (Beauty and the Beast ❤ ), but I’ve been considering picking up at least one Harry Potter one and maybe checking around for other bookish ones. I know I’ve seen Red Queen, Throne of Glass, Harry Potter, Game of Thrones, and I’m 90% sure I’ve seen Percy Jackson ones and at least a few classics, so I’m excited to actually look around for some I might like, and I’d be delighted to get one as a gift.

Book Subscription Box

This one is probably the priciest thing on the list. Not all subscription boxes have a gift option, but I know OwlCrate and OwlCrate Jr. do, as well as Once Upon a Bookclub (I haven’t tried this one, but it’s kind of cool because the items in the box are wrapped and have page numbers so you unwrap them as you read), and Unplugged Book Box (which offers a YA or adult option, but I also have not tried either of these yet). I’m pretty sure you can still purchase a single box from FairyLoot, but I’ve never been able to complete a purchase because they sold out so fast.


Do you give bookish gifts?

Do you have any bookish things on your wishlist?

Posted in book tags/memes

Top Ten Tuesday: Wintry Books

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme that was created by The Broke and the Bookish, and is now being hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Every week, there’s a theme and you choose ten books that fit it. Check out upcoming topics here.


This week’s topic is actually “Holiday Reads,” buuuut… I am not much of a holiday person (plus I celebrate Yule and/or the solstice, when I do celebrate a winter holiday) most of the time, and I rarely read things that are centered around a holiday or are seasonally themed :/ (I have nothing against them, I’m just mostly a mood reader.)

(That said, I am–weirdly–super in the festive spirit this year, and I don’t think I’m the only person who’s usually just “meh” about it all, but is going all out this year with celebrations, decorations, movie watching, cookie baking, etc.)

So, I’m just going with ten books that are set in winter, make me think of winter, or are books I think would be good to read in winter if you like your book seasons to match the season you’re living in.

In no particular order, as usual…


A Christmas Carol

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens– Obvious choice is obvious, I know. This is the one winter/Christmas/etc. tradition that I have, though, so I had to include it. Every year, usually on Christmas Eve night, I re-read this book. I’ve been doing this since…2002? It might have been 2003, but either way it’s been over half my life, but I think I missed one year when my original copy was destroyed 😦 (That might be why I now have 3 editions and want more haha.)

Harry Potter: The Complete Series

The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling– I feel like this will also be an obvious–and common–choice this week. I re-read these books a lot, and I don’t really plan to read them at any particular time of the year. But, I think I’ve probably re-read them the most during winter because of winter break from school (and now for reading challenges and readathons and the like).

The Bear and the Nightingale (Winternight Trilogy, #1)

The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden– I read this in January of this year, I believe, and it was such a nice winter read. I’ve already placed a hold on the sequel, which I should (weirdly enough) also get in January, unless people return it early.

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis– The Chronicles of Narnia is not my favorite series by far, but the books do give me winter vibes for obvious reasons (the setting), and I think I used to watch the first movie during holiday movie marathons on TV. So, it feels winter-appropriate, is what I’m saying 😛

The Winter People

The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon– This list quickly veered into horror territory, because I apparently have a thing for winter-set horror stories. This book was creepy and snowy and I highly recommend listening to the audiobook to up the creep factor if you–like me–don’t really get freaked out by books, ever.

The Golden Compass (His Dark Materials, #1)

The Golden Compass by Phillip Pullman– I actually didn’t really love this the first time I read it, but it is a polar-fantasy and I’m planning to give it a second try this winter. I might save it for Jadeyraereads’s Polarthon in February, but I’m not sure yet.

The Shining (The Shining, #1)

The Shining by Stephen King– Another one I didn’t love :/ I wanted to love this book, but I’m really thinking King just isn’t for me. That said, it’s another great horror pick for winter reading because of the snowed-in Torrance’s and the creepy Overlook Hotel.

Let the Right One In

Let the Right One In by John Ajvide Lindqvist– This one, I gave 4/5 stars, and it’s another good, chilly pick for horror lovers. (Although I feel like I was the last person to read this one.) It’s set in Sweden, I think actually in autumn, but it might span 2-3 seasons (it’s been a few years since I read it), but regardless, it’s cold.

The Turn of the Screw

The Turn of the Screw by Henry James– And one more I didn’t love, omg. I really need to find more wintry spooky books… Anyway. This classic ghost story actually kicks off on Christmas Eve, if I’m remembering it correctly, and it’s fairly short. I did not love it, despite generally enjoying Victorian and Edwardian ghost stories, but I definitely associate it with winter.

The Snowy Day (Peter, #1)

The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats– I had to include this one, because I remember there being a copy in basically everyone’s house back in the day, and I’m like 99% sure I read this to my sister a few times. It’s a picture book classic, and it’s just so sweet and magical, and I’m kicking myself for not purchasing a copy when my own child was still reading picture books. (I might still buy it, because you’re never too old to enjoy children’s book in my opinion.)


Hopefully next winter I’ll have fresh ideas for wintry reads to recommend or whatever, because I am planning to participate in Polarthon, as I mentioned earlier, as well as Believathon (a children’s books readathon hosted by Gavin Hetherington), if it returns, next year.

Believathon isn’t wintry, necessarily, but I’ve been discovering a lot of children’s books that have a cold setting while watching people’s TBR videos and reading vlogs this year, probably because it happened in November, when it’s starting to get chilly and people are getting into the wintry-books kind of mood.


Do you read seasonal and/or holiday-themed books?

If you do, what are some of your favorites?

Are there any on your TBR that you’re really excited about?

Posted in book tags/memes

Top Ten Tuesday: Thankful Freebie

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme that was created by The Broke and the Bookish, and is now being hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Every week, there’s a theme and you choose ten books that fit it. Check out upcoming topics here.


I almost didn’t do this one because I was, in all honestly, completely uninspired and having trouble thinking of things I’m thankful for that fit in with the bookish world (beyond the existence of books). But, I’m giving it a go, even if I don’t come up with ten things and even if some are a little silly.

In the order they pop into my head…


Book Bloggers and Booktubers

I haven’t always had a good experience with people in the bookish world (mainly the negative experiences have been in two specific areas of the online bookish world, but I won’t say where), but overall, I really love the book blogging and booktube communities. I’ve encountered some really awesome people, and it’s nice to know there are other people out there who geek out over books as much as I do. I’ve discovered new favorite books, been able to fangirl with other people about books I rarely saw people talking about, shared theories about upcoming books in a series, and so much more. I just love you all ❤

My Kindle

I used to think I would never buy an e-reader, back when they were super new. I’m really glad I got over that, though, because I love my Kindle. I started with a Kindle Keyboard, and now I have a Paperwhite (that’s slowly dying because it’s like five and a half years old), and these things have changed my reading life for the better. I have poor vision, even with new lenses in my glasses, and I have chronic migraines which are often triggered by squinting at pages. My Kindle has made it easier for me to read as much as I want to, because I can adjust the font size and style. Plus, I can carry tons of books with me at all times, and check out books from the library without actually driving an hour each way to go to the library.

Magnetic Bookmarks

I’ve had a lot of different types of bookmarks in my life, but magnetic ones are my favorite. I prefer the kinds that have a bit of a gap around the magnet, so I lift the edges easier, but I’m really not that picky. When I first started seeing magnetic bookmarks, I honestly thought they were weird and gimmicky. But after I tried them? I can’t live without them now haha. No more losing my bookmark, losing my place because my bookmark fell out, etc. Plus, they’re usually super cute.

OwlCrate

Maybe this is a weird one, and I probably could have just said “Bookish Subscription Boxes,” but the only one I’ve received is OwlCrate, so that’s why I chose to go specific instead of generic. I have a hard time convincing myself to spend money on myself, except for things I need, so I’ve always really wanted book merch, but I rarely bought anything. OwlCrate is a great combo of a new book (which I probably would have bought anyway) and useful or just cute things I wouldn’t have bought separately. Some of my most used items have come from OwlCrate boxes, like the fingerless gloves from the September 2019 box, or the wallet from the July 2018 box. I just love them ❤

The Harry Potter Series

I had to mention this one, even if it is cliche. I had a very difficult childhood, and I can say with certainty that the Harry Potter books saved my life. They gave me hope when I had none, they provided a safe space when I had none, and they got me through some of the worst times of my life. I really don’t think I would be here today if I hadn’t had those books.

Goodreads

I don’t always love Goodreads, but I am thankful it exists. Before I made my account about 10 years ago, I didn’t keep track of books I read at all. Even when I first started using it, I didn’t track everything (like, for years I didn’t track comics, erotica, novellas, etc.), which led to me periodically picking up a book that sounded interesting, reading like 20 pages and feeling like I’d read it before, only to realize at some point later that I had read it before 😛 Plus, it’s nice to track when I read something and have a general idea of how much I liked it, if I decide to re-read it later or talk about it.

Brooklyn Public Library

This is another weird one, because I live hundreds of miles away from Brooklyn, but earlier this year I applied for an out of state card (which is $50 per year). I had thought about doing this for years, but I finally took the plunge this year in an attempt to save more money, and I am so glad I did. That card probably paid for itself in like two months, and I will definitely be renewing it next year. Their selection is so good, and I rarely find myself having to choose between not reading a book or buying it, so I’ve definitely been saving money while also reading more.

Sticky Flags

This one is probably really silly, but I love those things! There have been a number of times when I’ve wanted to look up a quote or something and I managed to find it pretty quickly. Plus, it’s kind of fun to see which parts I marked (for whatever reason) when I re-read a book.


That isn’t ten, but close enough 😛

If you’re celebrating Thanksgiving this week, I hope you have a nice and safe holiday.

What are some bookish things you’re thankful for?