My August 2021 TBR

My August 2021 TBR

This post contains books gifted by Tor Teen, Orbit Books, Get Underlined, and Read Forever.

A couple of days late, but it’s finally here and ready for your perusal. I used to do TBR posts more frequently, but then I dropped off because I’m very lazy. But recently, I’ve been thinking about accountability, especially when it comes to the books I read and share. To give you some context, I can read about eight books a month. More books if the month is really good, but mostly I read less because doing this and working full time is a pretty big list of things to do. But I love to read, of course. Otherwise I wouldn’t be doing this.

I wanted to share this with you so that you know what I’m reading and what you can expect throughout the month. Reviews will be up a few days after I finish reading each book and unless I DNF or swap out books from the list, I’m pretty beholden to what is here. I hope that gives you some context into what I do every month and give you some ideas on what you should read next!

Shards of Earth by Adrian Tchaikovsky

I feel like every summer, I take on one big science fiction tome. I might have doubled up last summer, but this summer I wanted to read a space opera. When I heard about Adrian Tchaikovsky and his body of work, I decided why not. It sounds like a cool book and I do love a team of aliens coming together to fight for the greater good.

The war is over. Its heroes forgotten. Until one chance discovery . . .

Idris has neither aged nor slept since they remade him in the war. And one of humanity’s heroes now scrapes by on a freelance salvage vessel, to avoid the attention of greater powers.

After earth was destroyed, mankind created a fighting elite to save their species, enhanced humans such as Idris. In the silence of space they could communicate, mind-to-mind, with the enemy. Then their alien aggressors, the Architects, simply disappeared—and Idris and his kind became obsolete.

Now, fifty years later, Idris and his crew have discovered something strange abandoned in space. It’s clearly the work of the Architects—but are they returning? And if so, why? Hunted by gangsters, cults and governments, Idris and his crew race across the galaxy hunting for answers. For they now possess something of incalculable value, that many would kill to obtain.

A Lesson in Vengeance by Victoria Lee

You had me at dark academia. I’ve always been such a fan of this sub-genre and when I heard about this book and how it’s set in some secluded mountains with the girls living in a boarding school and practicing witchcraft, well, it definitely got my attention. It also sounds like there will be intrigue and a bit of a mystery as two young students discover hidden beneath the dark halls.

Felicity Morrow is back at Dalloway School.

Perched in the Catskill mountains, the centuries-old, ivy-covered campus was home until the tragic death of her girlfriend. Now, after a year away, she’s returned to graduate. She even has her old room in Godwin House, the exclusive dormitory rumored to be haunted by the spirits of five Dalloway students—girls some say were witches. The Dalloway Five all died mysteriously, one after another, right on Godwin grounds.

Witchcraft is woven into Dalloway’s history. The school doesn’t talk about it, but the students do. In secret rooms and shadowy corners, girls convene. And before her girlfriend died, Felicity was drawn to the dark. She’s determined to leave that behind her now; all Felicity wants is to focus on her senior thesis and graduate. But it’s hard when Dalloway’s occult history is everywhere. And when the new girl won’t let her forget.

It’s Ellis Haley’s first year at Dalloway, and she’s already amassed a loyal following. A prodigy novelist at seventeen, Ellis is a so-called “method writer.” She’s eccentric and brilliant, and Felicity can’t shake the pull she feels to her. So when Ellis asks Felicity for help researching the Dalloway Five for her second book, Felicity can’t say no. Given her history with the arcane, Felicity is the perfect resource.

And when history begins to repeat itself, Felicity will have to face the darkness in Dalloway–and in herself.

The Dating Playbook by Farrah Rochon

I’m a huge fan of Farrah Rochon’s The Boyfriend Project books. Of course, there’s only one out so far, but this is the second and said to be a super fun one as well because it’s got fake dating! I always know fake dating is such a bad idea, but it’s one of my favorite tropes if you do it right. It also features football, which is randomly one of my favorite sports to watch.

When a personal trainer agrees to fake date her client, all rules are out the window in this delightful romantic comedy from the USA Today bestselling author of The Boyfriend Project!

When it comes to personal training, Taylor Powell kicks serious butt. Unfortunately, her bills are piling up, rent is due, and the money situation is dire. Taylor needs more than the support of her new best friends, Samiah and London. She needs a miracle.

And Jamar Dixon might just be it. The oh-so-fine former footballer wants back into the NFL, and he wants Taylor to train him. There’s just one catch — no one can know what they’re doing. But when they’re accidentally outed as a couple, Taylor’s game plan is turned completely upside down. Is Jamar just playing to win . . . or is he playing for keeps?

Raybearer by Jordan Ifueko

One of the first picks from my “Suggest My Reads” question I asked back in July. Last month, I opened up a suggestion box for people who follow me to recommend me a read. I chose two books from that list and credited those people for helping pick out a book for me to read. This is the first one and it’s kind of serendipitous that she picked it because the second book in this series comes out this month. Is it divine intervention? I’ve already heard so many good things about this book and been putting off reading it for a while. No time like the present especially for a book with young people choosing the path that’s right for themselves and defying the wishes of people above them.

Tarisai has always longed for the warmth of a family. She was raised in isolation by a mysterious, often absent mother known only as The Lady. The Lady sends her to the capital of the global empire of Aritsar to compete with other children to be chosen as one of the Crown Prince’s Council of 11. If she’s picked, she’ll be joined with the other Council members through the Ray, a bond deeper than blood. That closeness is irresistible to Tarisai, who has always wanted to belong somewhere. But The Lady has other ideas, including a magical wish that Tarisai is compelled to obey: Kill the Crown Prince once she gains his trust. Tarisai won’t stand by and become someone’s pawn—but is she strong enough to choose a different path for herself?

Mask of Mirrors by MA Carrick

A little while back, a friend of mine suggested this book to me. She mentioned that not a lot of people gave this book enough love, but also that it was so good that it deserved to be read and reviewed and adored. I love stories about con artists and magical balls. I think I will definitely love this one.

Fortune favors the bold. Magic favors the liars.

Ren is a con artist who has come to the sparkling city of Nadežra with one goal: to trick her way into a noble house, securing her fortune and her sister’s future.

But as she’s drawn into the elite world of House Traementis, she realizes her masquerade is just one of many surrounding her. And as nightmare magic begins to weave its way through the City of Dreams, the poisonous feuds of its aristocrats and the shadowy dangers of its impoverished underbelly become tangled…with Ren at their heart.

The Mask of Mirrors is the unmissable start to the Rook & Rose trilogy, a dazzling and darkly magical fantasy adventure by Marie Brennan and Alyc Helms, writing together as M. A. Carrick

Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire

This was the second book I picked from my “Recommend a Read” survey. I think I actually like that name and maybe I’ll keep it for every month. I’ve already read a few books from the Wayward Children series, but I never read the first book. Funny enough, I liked the books I read from the series but I wasn’t completely enamored by it. Then I heard that the books I should be reading are the first few of them, and I suddenly realized the mistake that I had made. I cannot wait to dive into this novella and find out the secrets behind this magical door.

Eleanor West’s Home for Wayward Children
No Solicitations
No Visitors
No Quests

Children have always disappeared under the right conditions; slipping through the shadows under a bed or at the back of a wardrobe, tumbling down rabbit holes and into old wells, and emerging somewhere… else.

But magical lands have little need for used-up miracle children.

Nancy tumbled once, but now she’s back. The things she’s experienced… they change a person. The children under Miss West’s care understand all too well. And each of them is seeking a way back to their own fantasy world.

But Nancy’s arrival marks a change at the Home. There’s a darkness just around each corner, and when tragedy strikes, it’s up to Nancy and her new-found schoolmates to get to the heart of the matter.

No matter the cost.

A Blade So Black by LL McKinney

The Fantasy Book Club pick of August! I’m so excited to read this one, especially when I read that it’s supposed to be an Alice in Wonderland retelling. I love Alice in Wonderland in all its whimsy and madness, so I can only imagine this one being just the same. Perhaps with a more likeable protagonist and it doesn’t hurt that the premise also sounds like she’s already been to Wonderland and now journeying through the world to find a cure for her mentor.

The first time the Nightmares came, it nearly cost Alice her life. Now she’s trained to battle monstrous creatures in the dark dream realm known as Wonderland with magic weapons and hardcore fighting skills. Yet even warriors have a curfew.

Life in real-world Atlanta isn’t always so simple, as Alice juggles an overprotective mom, a high-maintenance best friend, and a slipping GPA. Keeping the Nightmares at bay is turning into a full-time job. But when Alice’s handsome and mysterious mentor is poisoned, she has to find the antidote by venturing deeper into Wonderland than she’s ever gone before. And she’ll need to use everything she’s learned in both worlds to keep from losing her head . . . literally.

Forestborn by Elayne Audrey Becker

This book, well. I don’t have a reason for reading it. It sounded beautiful with magic and mystical woods. I love a YA fantasy like this, so I added it to my list in hopes of reading it before the end of the month.


Rora is a shifter, as magical as all those born in the wilderness–and as feared. She uses her abilities to spy for the king, traveling under different guises and listening for signs of trouble.

When a magical illness surfaces across the kingdom, Rora uncovers a devastating truth: Finley, the young prince and her best friend, has caught it, too. His only hope is stardust, the rarest of magical elements, found deep in the wilderness where Rora grew up–and to which she swore never to return.

But for her only friend, Rora will face her past and brave the dark, magical wood, journeying with her brother and the obstinate, older prince who insists on coming. Together, they must survive sentient forests and creatures unknown, battling an ever-changing landscape while escaping human pursuers who want them dead. With illness gripping the kingdom and war on the horizon, Finley’s is not the only life that hangs in the balance.

What are you reading this month?

My June 2021 Possibilities

My June 2021 Possibilities

Happy June, everyone! I’m so glad that it’s finally summer and getting to read some great books. Before I begin, I wanted to mention that this summer will be different as I’m transitioning away from blogging full time to blogging for a hobby. I’ll still be here sharing book reviews, book lists, and fun bookish things, but not as often as I was doing.

Also, since I’m transitioning to a new full time job, my reading life is definitely going to slow down. It took me a second to be okay with the transition, but I think I’m finally at a good spot and happy to still have reading in my life. This time, I’m moving away from all the new releases and keeping up to speed with what’s coming out. It’s been fun, but there’s never been an obligation for me to read and review these books. Instead, I want to read what I want. It’s about quality over quantity for me now and I feel like I’ll much prefer my reading life this way. Of course there will always be books I’m reading to read and review, but since I’m not going to have the luxury of reading all day, I want to be selective and read the books I want to read.

Granted, it’ll always be tough to do because there’s so many books that pop up that I’m excited to read and check out. But the one thing I’ve learned in my life about my reading is that it’s a marathon, not a sprint. Reading books is about getting into a story and finding yourself lost in a new world or exploring the real world through a different lens. Why rush the process of full immersion?

So new month, new me. Let’s hopefully get some reading done:

My July 2020 TBR

My July 2020 TBR

TBRs and me have a troubled past. Sometimes, it’s a blessing. Most times, it’s a curse. But I’m a reader and a blogger and when it comes to accountability and ensuring that the books I present are read, I need it. I’ve been dictated by my mood way too often and whenever I do, my reading always suffers. And someone with way too many unread books filling her shelves than ones I’ve actually read, I need to do something about it.

This month, I’m committing to reading 17 books. I feel like this is a very high goal for me especially since I read so many big books and I read slowly, but I’m also committing to spending less time on my phone and more time in my books. Like I mentioned in my wrap up, I spent on average 7 hours a day looking at my phone. That’s outrageous! So I’ll be trading my time spent on my phone to read. Let’s get into what I’ll be reading. This list won’t include my current buddy read of Stamped from the Beginning by Ibram X Kendi being held on Instagram. Here’s a compiled list of all the books I want to read in July:

If you’re interested in reading more about why I picked these books, I’ve organized these reads by category. Please enjoy this exhaustive explanation I put together for every book I chose to read this month. I put a lot of work into curating my TBR so that it’s inclusive, it checks off my unread shelf, and they’re enjoyable!

Books I’ll Be Promoting

I wanted there to be some more transparency about 1) how I get my books 2) why I receive certain books over others. For the most part, I don’t really request books from the publisher. I get a lot of books for promotion that I concentrate my time on what I’ll be promoting than what I want to read for review. I’m making it an effort to read the books I’ll be promoting so that my voice feels genuine on Instagram and on the blog. For July, I signed up for three book tours and a promotional reread of another. These books are:

  • Cinderella is Dead by Kalynn Bayron
  • An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir
  • Courting Darkness by Robin LaFever
  • Hawk by James Patterson

Cinderella is Dead, Courting Darkness, and Hawk will be read for promotional book tours I’ve signed up for on Instagram. I’m very excited to read these books (and Cinderella is Dead will be my first read of the month), but these might be the last tours I sign up for. While I love promoting new books for people to check out and possibly purchase, I also want there to be some more authenticity in my reading on my Instagram page. It’s just a personal choice I’m making so that I don’t feel like just a salesperson.

An Ember in the Ashes will be a fun readalong happening throughout the month of July. I’ll be sharing thoughts and photos every weekend in hopes to pump everyone up for Sabaa Tahir’s fourth book in the series. This will actually be my first time reading this series, so I can’t wait to get started!

Netgalley Books

I talk about this all the time, but my Netgalley score is 7%. It’s atrocious! But if I were to request any books for review, it would be through Netgalley. While I know I can email publishers and use the traditional method of requesting books, I prefer Netgalley. I think it’s because there’s more e-galleys publishers are able to give away and while the process is still elusive to me, I feel like it’s a little bit more fair? That’s just my opinion though. With the pandemic and many promotional books being sent via Netgalley, my score just kept getting worse and worse. So I’ll be focusing some of my monthly reads to lower this score. I want my reviews to be timely to when the book is about to publish or around its publishing date. The books I’ve chosen to read this month are:

  • The Damned by Renee Ahdieh
  • Utopia Avenue by David Mitchell
  • Running by Natalia Sylvester
  • Sex and Vanity by Kevin Kwan
  • Blue Ticket by Sophie Mackintosh
  • Mexican Gothic by Syvia Moreno-Garcia
  • Pizza Girl by Jean Kyoung Frazier

Mind you, I’m excited to read all of these books. I don’t want you to think that me reading Netgalley books is some chore I have to do. I want to read these books and it’ll be great to also raise my Netgalley score while I do it.

I’m extremely excited about Mexican Gothic, Pizza Girl, and Running. I’ve already seen so many positive reviews about Mexican Gothic and Pizza Girl. However, I’ve also read negative reviews for both and whenever that happens, I need to read the book and make up my own mind.

Sex and Vanity was also picked for Good Morning America’s book club. I’m so excited to be reading this and joining in on their discussions. I can’t wait to see what other people said about this book too because I remember reading reviews of Crazy Rich Asians and being super dissatisfied with the way people described this book.

Book Club Books

Not only do I read constantly, but I’m also in two different book clubs. One focuses reads written by women and the other focuses on romances. Both of the books chosen this month for those book clubs are big anticipated reads for me too. I can’t wait to see what these books are about and discuss them with my book club friends. They are:

  • A Cowboy to Remember by Rebekah Weatherspoon
  • Catherine House by Elisabeth Thomas

First off, I’ve never read a cowboy romance ever. I don’t know what to expect from it, but judging by the fact the dude on the cover has a 12-pack (which I didn’t even know was physically possible), I have a feeling this is going to be good.

Catherine House has been on my TBR since May. And yet, every month it gets put off because my mood changes and I don’t want to read a gothic story. Well, that’s about to change especially now that I HAVE to read as well as want to read it. I can’t wait.

The Rest

While I have a huge list of books to read, I always want to sneak in some books I want to read for myself. The rest of the books here are just that. These are the books that caught my eye recently and want to get into. I’m worried with all the other books that these books will be cast off, but if I go at the rate I’m going, I think I can squeeze these books in.

  • A Song of Wraiths and Ruins by Roseanne A Brown
  • Binti by Nnedi Okorafor
  • How to Save a Life by Lisa and Liz
  • The Extraordinaries by TJ Klune

And that is my TBR. I know this blog post is a doozy, but if you made it this far, then yay! Thanks for coming to my TBR talk.

Book Haul – March 5, 2019

Book Haul – March 5, 2019

After looking over all the books I received this week, I felt like it was time for a little book haul blog post! I think it was just a coincidence that I received so many books at once. It’s probably because of all the rain we’ve been having here that my mail is delayed. It’s probably because I live in California now.

Anyway, let’s get to the books. Some of these are promotional, some of them are for review, and others are because I’m curious. I want to expand my reading life, so I try to vary my reading.

The ones I’m most excited about reading are:

Whoops, that turned out to be way more than I expected this time around. Stalker is definitely one I’m super excited about. While I’m not a huge fan of thrillers, I do like to indulge in a crime fiction every now and then. I’ve heard a lot about Lars Kepler from Abby at Crime by the Book. I think he’s one of her favorite authors, so I’m going to take that advice and try this one out.

The Weight of a Piano is one I’m also really excited about. I saw Stacey at @prose_and_palate chat up this book the other day and it’s made me super interested to see what it’s about. The story is about…a piano. It’s about the person who first owned the piano and lost it while traveling from Russia to America and the current owner of the piano. The current owner is a little lost in life and needs to sell the piano she never learned to play.

My friend, Haley, is a huge fan of Han Kang and I’ve always wanted to read her work. Her novel, The Vegetarian, is the one I’ve heard of, but I’ve also heard good things about The White Book.

The ones I’ll be promoting later this month are:

I do want to mention that books I promote are books I actually want to read. I’m very careful about the books I request and just want to promote what I want to promote. These books I’ll gladly share a little of my page. Out of all of these, Field Notes on Love is the highest on my list, but I’ve been hearing some really big things about Polaris Rising. Summon and Smoke is also an exciting one especially since it’s the author who wrote The Paper Magician series.

Some surprise mail that I’m excited about:

Foursome is definitely high on this list. It’s a nonfiction novel on the lives of four very big artists. I might give this to my sister for her to read, but I’ll take a little stab at it first.

The Guest Book is a complete mystery to me, but for some reason I’m drawn to it. It says it’s a multi-generational story that hides a big secret with their grandfather. It sounds like of intriguing and it has been a while since I’ve read a historical novel, so I might check that out.

I hope you enjoyed this little list!

I received a copy of this book from the publishers for free. My opinions have not been influenced by the publisher or the author.


Why I Don’t Like Monthly TBRs

Why I Don’t Like Monthly TBRs

Are you a TBR curator? Do you take the time to put together a loving list of books you’ll read over a month? I used to be this person too.

This month, I decided to share my TBR and really work to build a TBR that fits my reading life. I put the books I  needed to read, the books I wanted to read, and some other fun throw-ins. But I’ve noticed something about my reading life when picking out my TBR. With that knowledge, I decided I won’t be putting together TBRs anymore.

Most times, when you see books on your desk, you get super excited about reading them. I know I’m definitely one of those people. But my mood reading has taken a form where it changes week to week. Day to day, even. What I wanted to read one day isn’t what I want to read the next day. I was almost forcing myself to read a book just because I made a promise to read it.

So I tried to keep with the TBR I compiled because I want to see what it’s like to read exactly what you set out to read. I found out this doesn’t work for me. I keep wanting to read other books. I even wanted to look at other books. Not everything on my list is what I want to read, so I understand that some will be need-to-reads. However, I want more control over what I want to read. I want to pick by the gut I live by and do it on the daily rather than monthly schedule.

I try to keep my list varied, but it’s always an unexpected journey with my mood. One day I’ll want to read a thriller while the next I want to read a romance. It changes so frequently that being held to a TBR felt like being imprisoned by my reading life. Staring at the books I want to read also doesn’t help. To me, it looks like a giant mountain of possibility that I won’t be able to climb in my lifetime.

Now one thing I definitely don’t want to do is get excited about a new book and abandon all the other books. I don’t want to read everything my book mail dictates to me because there are some books I don’t feel like reading right away. However, I also have FOMO (the fear of missing out) because everyone is reading some new book while I’ll be putting it off for a few months. The struggle is very first world, but it’s also very real.

I’ll still be keeping the books I need to read on the top of my list for the month. The books I want to read? Well, this mood reader is sticking exactly with her mood.

Do you do TBRs? Do you find them challenging?

10 Nonfiction Novels I’ll Be Reading This Year

10 Nonfiction Novels I’ll Be Reading This Year


This year, one of my big goals is to read more nonfiction. Nonfiction is a category I’ve rarely explored mostly because I’m an escapist and I use reading to leave the confines of my own world and enter another.

But on occasion, I do read some nonfiction. My preferred genre is memoirs and autobiographies, though. I love reading stories of real people and their everyday lives. I usually pick memoirs of public figures I admire.

And while there are tons of nonfiction I could be picking up this year, I think I’m going to start off slow and read what I know. If I like it enough, then maybe I’ll be converted to nonfiction exclusively. But I don’t think that’s the case. Here’s a list of some of the nonfiction novels I’ll be reading this year:

Becoming by Michelle Obama

Of course I want to read about Michelle Obama’s life. Is there anything more I need to say about it?

Educated by Tara Westover

I’ve heard so many wonderful things about this particular book. Reading the description, I’m now more intrigued. I love the idea of education being a journey through the dark unknown. The idea of someone who had been homeschooled her entire life in an isolated part of America and then setting off to find education outside the confines of what she knew. I mean, that sounds intriguing enough for me to continue reading.

My Life in France by Julia Child

This book has been sitting on my shelf for years and it’s finally time for me to read it. I’m a huge fan of Julia Child and I’ve read biographies about her in the past. I even made her recipes to celebrate her birthday. However, I’ve never read her first-hand account of living in France and it’s finally time for me to read it and enjoy it like a delicious dish.

Born a Crime by Trevor Noah

I’m not a fan of The Daily Show, but I’m a fan of Trevor Noah. Born a Crime is his personal stories of growing up in South Africa during apartheid and even calls his own birth a crime. It sounds like such an interesting story and I can’t wait to see what drives him to comedy and becoming the host of The Daily Show.

To Shake the Sleeping Self by Jedidiah Jenkins

I didn’t know that Jedidiah Jenkins quit his job to create his career. If you’re not aware, Jedidiah Jenkins is Instagram famous for taking pictures of his beautiful journey. It’s like Wild, but in pictures. I love stories like this because I always become so inspired by their lives. I’ll definitely be reading this one and perhaps planning my own cross-continental journey.

Heavy by Kiese Laymon

This book is actually going to be the first nonfiction novel I’ll be reading this year. I didn’t know about Heavy until a friend talked about it on her Instagram page. I think that honest accounts of the world make reading more interesting and I think Kiese Laymon’s life will be one that will not only surprise but educate us all.

Watch Me by Angelica Huston

I know after talking about a book like Heavy, I’m going to chat about Watch Me by Angelica Huston. TBH, this book has been on my TBR shelf for years and I want to read it to get it over with. Don’t you love a good celebrity autobiography once in a while?

Hunger by Roxane Gay

When Roxane Gay first put out this novel, I was definitely there to pick it up. I think body image and food are two very big topics that get messed around with a lot. We’re told so many things about the way we eat, what we eat, and what we look like. I want to explore Roxane’s book and listen to her account.

Men We Reaped by Jesmyn Ward

Over the holidays, a friend of mine told me that reading Men We Reaped brought a lot of insight to the other books Jesmyn Ward’s written. It’s a memoir about five men Jesmyn lost in five years. Each of these men died for different reasons, but I can understand with a tragedy like that why someone would want to look into it. I think the most interesting book will be learning what she’s learned from it and what we’re all going to be taking away from reading her novel.

My January 2019 TBR

My January 2019 TBR

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Ahhh fresh book stacks. You have to love them.

This month’s TBR has a little bit of everything. Because I’m enacting some of my reading goals into this list like keeping my list pretty small, exploring some other genres, and reading nonfiction. When I think about this list, I wish I had the foresight to do this before. I have a great mix of books from genres I love. I have challenging novels that I’m excited to read and I’ve somehow incorporated nonfiction, which isn’t a genre I read often. All in all, I’m really happy with this month’s TBR. Here’s what I’ll be reading:

If You Leave Me by Crystal Hana Kim

I’ll be reading this book for my Words Between Worlds Book Club on Instagram. Crystal Hana Kim is a fellow Korean American and this novel is supposed to surpass those physical boundaries (like a wall between North and South Korea). I’m really excited to read it.

Black Leopard, Red Wolf by Marlon James

This year I’ve got a few highly anticipated fantasy novels and Black Leopard, Red Wolf is one of them. I don’t know if I buy that this is a Game of Thrones-style book, but we’ll get into it. I have a feeling it’ll be more science fiction than fantasy, but I could be wrong. I’ll be reading this one next week.

The Gilded Wolves by Roshani Chokshi

I started my new year with this book and I’m already shook. It reminds me a lot of Six of Crows, which I loved! It’s got a cast of characters that all bring different skillsets to the group and you can just tell there’s going to be some major heisting. I love a book that reads like Ocean’s 11. I don’t want to make any more assumptions, but it’s definitely got my attention.

Golden Child by Claire Adam

This is the second novel being published by SJP and Hogarth. It’s about a family living in rural Trinidad and their two twin sons, Paul and Peter. When Paul disappears one day, their father, Clyde, doesn’t think much of it. It’s not until a few weeks past that he realizes the implications of his lost son. OMG, I can’t wait to read this!

Bonfire by Krysten Ritter

Winter, for me, is thriller time. Romance in the summer. Fantasy in the fall. Thrillers in the winter. I think it has something to do with the temperatures dropping and the dark moods we all adopt. Bonfire has been on my TBR for quite some time, so I plan on reading this one during the shortened daylight hours. I’ll also be reading a few more thrillers this month.

The Water Cure by Sophie Mackintosh

This particular novel sounds scary AF. Just three words for you: feminist revenge fantasy. It’s got Handmaid’s Tale vibes and science fiction vibes. While I’m not necessarily the type to read feminist fiction, I can’t resist a good story about women who find themselves trapped in their society and then figure out how to escape. It’s going to be a good one and it might keep me up at night.

Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

I picked Dark Matter for The Backlist Book Club pick this month! Going on my theme of thrillers in the winter, I chose this to continue my late nights up scared out of my mind. While I categorized this as a thriller, I’ve been told that it’s more scary than your average thriller. It’s science fiction-y with some scary components, so I will definitely be enjoying this. I can’t wait for the conversations this one is going to incite.

Sadie by Courtney Summers

While I won’t be reading any more contemporary YA, that doesn’t mean I won’t be reading some thriller-y YA. I still like parts of the YA category and I think Sadie will carry all of them. I would say this feels more like crime fiction than thriller, but I’m not 100% sure of the difference between the two. We shall see with this one.

Heavy by Kiese Laymon

Finally, my one nonfiction book for the month. I’m so excited to read Heavy after Kelsey Manning from Scribner suggested we check it out. Heavy is a memoir written by Kiese Laymon. It touches on his life living in Jackson, Mississippi, the sexual violence of his youth and the writer he is today. There’s a lot going on from the synopsis of this memoir, so I’m going to be digging into this one. I hope I don’t cry too much.

Taming the TBR Update

Taming the TBR Update

A few weeks ago, I put out a short-term project called #tamingtheTBR. This was basically a way for me to clear my bookish calendar for the summer and let me read whatever I want. It’s the summer after all and the summer deserves certain types of reads. For me, it’s going to be a lot of romance, a lot of fantasy, and a little bit of diverse reading.

I know there’s a couple of slow burners in my pile and I might skip them depending on my mood. That’s right, I’m going to kick off the TBR and just read books because of the mood I’m in. I want to make a pretty good dent in my TBR list this summer. I’m already getting anxiety that I won’t get to read everything I want. I mean, it’s more realistic to think this way.

Anyway, I did come away with a few highlights that I want to share. But from this point on, it’s going to be reading for me and I’m so excited about it.

Finished reading all the books

Well, just the books I had to read. It actually didn’t turn out so bad. Aside from a couple more books I’m waiting on for various IG promotions, I’m pretty much done! I did end up not reading a couple of the books I chose from Netgalley and I’ll share those reasons why.

I won’t be using Netgalley anymore

When I first started out, I used Netgalley to get books and review. It was a lot of fun! It allowed me to build my blog and my credibility. I was able to work on my review style too because of it. But as my Instagram started to take off, I didn’t need the books I was receiving on Netgalley. In  fact, I started ignoring my Netgalley reviews because I was getting so many books in the mail I’m happy to read.

So I’ve decided that I’m not going to be using Netgalley to request and review books, but I will use it as a resource on all the new books coming out and I can easily request from publishers.

I had the worst book slump ever

Scratch that, this wasn’t the worst book slump. That was the few years after college where I just didn’t care about books and just wanted to watch TV for a little while. That was my worst book slump. However, it did take me a week to read a contemporary YA story that would have taken me about two days. I mean, that could have been the book too, but I’m not going to count that.

As I mentioned in my post from a few days ago, I’m legit over reading. I guess when I’m asked to read a bunch of books I’m not in the mood to read, then I find myself wanting to stop reading all together. It’s something valuable and I’m glad I learned that about myself. But I’m glad that this slump is over as you can see by my review of Save the Date by Morgan Matson. I’m now reading They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera which is giving me serious Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe vibes.

Finally I organized my books and ready to read!

It’s been an interesting few weeks. I don’t think I’ve bellyached more than maybe I was a kid at Disneyworld and I didn’t get a chocolate Mickey ice cream bar. I finally took a moment to go through all my books in my TBR, make the choice on the ones I do intend on reading, and displayed them out like a library or a bookstore or something.

To make things short, I displayed all my books in my room. I don’t plan on having a TBR during these months because I want to really go by my mood. I still have a few books that I’m going to be reading for my book club, but aside from that it’s free reading from here on out.

I hope you enjoyed this update and I do hope you follow along with me as I read books existing in my TBR. Who knows, maybe you’ll read along with me or we’ll coincidentally read the same book at the same time.

My Favorite Genres of All Time

My Favorite Genres of All Time

I think I might have written a post like this in the past, but I’ve been thinking a lot about books and genres. It’s probably because I’m in the process of moving across the country and that means whittling my book piles down to the ones that I truly want to read.

I rummaged through all my books, made lists, and figured out that the top billings for genres that I love to read. Here’s what I got:


General Fiction

My general fiction contains everything from literary greats to the beach read. I love fiction in general, but there’s a time and place for all of it. I like to keep a mix of books available so that I can pick and choose depending on my mood. Most times, I’ll read a fun summer read because I’m always in the mood for those. I didn’t think that my general fiction pile would be so big, but I guess that’s because it’s got some literary fiction, womens’ fiction, some romance novels, and my diverse books.

Most literary fiction I read is from an author of color. I just love the stories that they tell and they always make me think a little harder and understand a little deeper.

The sad thing about this list is that there’s not a lot of literary fiction here. Most of these books are fun reads or “womens’ fiction.” I think the reason for that is because I’ve read so many stories about the young woman moving to New York in pursuit of something. Or that couple that’s on the verge of breaking up and they’re doing what they can to stay together. As I get older, I’m noticing that my tastes are changing and I’m moving away from books by the Jonathans (Safran Foer, Franzen, etc) and more into books that let me escape a little from my life.


Science Fiction/Fantasy

Sci-fi and Fantasy is my next biggest genre. If anything, sci-fi/fantasy is my favorite genre. The list here is small, but I also have all my bigger fantasy reads on my Kindle.

When I was growing up, I was in love with science fiction and fantasy. I even ran the sci-fi/fantasy literary magazine at my high school! However, I didn’t read a lot when I was a kid and therefore don’t have a lot of the classic sci-fi/fantasy novels under my belt. While I don’t have many of those classics in my TBR pile, I do have aspirations to read them all. Hello, I haven’t even read Hitchhiker’s Guide yet…



My non-fiction pile is strangely tall. I also included my poetry books in here as well. I think the reason for that is because I haven’t read them. I love reading non-fiction essays and memoirs, but fiction just always happens to take over when I’m reading books. I think I’ll change it this summer and at least read one non-fiction book per month. This way, I’ll get some non-fiction in my life!

Sometimes I like to throw in some thriller, some romance and some YA to mix things up. I always thought I was a YA reader, but I guess most of the YA I’m reading is also Science Fiction and Fantasy. When I think back to my reading life, I think of the Twilight series and Harry Potter and The Hunger Games being big in my life. Isn’t it funny how sometimes your favorite genres are just sitting right in front of your face?

My Most Anticipated Reads for June 2018

My Most Anticipated Reads for June 2018

Get your pre-order game on because June has got a ton of fun reads being published. I’ve already read a couple of the books on this list, so I’ll include my reviews for them.

When I think of June (and all the summer month), I just think of love and fun and a little mischief. I’ve also included a star on the books I’m super excited about and can’t wait to read. Without further ado, here’s what’s publishing in June:

Continue reading “My Most Anticipated Reads for June 2018”