A Penny For Your Thoughts #1: Misconceptions About Bookworms

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Hello loves. Today I bring to you my very first discussion post. I’ve been wanting to post one for a very long time, but I always find a reason not to. (Excuses mostly.)

Before we get started, here’s an intro to this feature:

A Penny For Your Thoughts is a new feature on my blog where I discuss different subjects every week. Basically, it’s a discussion feature with a fancy name. 😉 I intend on having a discussion at least once a week, more if I have the time.

I want you to know that I am very open-minded and I appreciate honesty above all else, so please be comfortable when letting me know your opinion on a matter.You don’t have to worry about offending me if our opinions vary, I like seeing things from other people’s perspective and it would be a boring world if we all had the same opinions on everything. 🙂

Also, if you have any suggestions for discussion topics please comment below or shoot me an email at headinthecloudsheartinthebooks@gmail.com


As you can tell by the title, today I’ll be discussing a few misconceptions I’ve noticed people have about us, readers, and who we are.

1. Books, 24/7 books

While it cannot be denied, the significance of books in readers’ lives, it also isn’t the only thing we have going on. Some of us might enjoy gaming alongside reading, or maybe catching up with the latest TV shows. Who knows?

The problem is when people think ALL we know is BOOKS and ALL we do is READ, and question us when we are seen without a book or having some other hobby. Or even better when they give you an accusatory stare, like you’ve just been caught cheating! Because clearly, to be a bookworm is to have a book plastered to your hand(s) at all times with your nose buried in it and only speak of literature, otherwise your bookworm status is open to questioning.

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Let’s just say this person likes to eat. Do you expect said person to just eat, eat and EAT?

I guess my point is it’s perfectly fine for someone who loves to read to have other choices of entertainment. All while not having to explain ourselves like a bunch of outlaws. You can be a book lover and love other things without feeling guilty about it.

2. Speckies here; speckies there; speckies everywhere.

This is what some people think we look like:

This is such an inaccurate assumption. There is no rule saying, if you read, you have to wear glasses. Just the same, doesn’t mean if someone wears glasses, by default he/she is a reader. That is simply not how things work!

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3. Straight-A students

Let me make it clear, there’s a huge difference between reading works of fiction and textbooks. Reading fiction- non fiction, even- isn’t automatically going to make us top students. So, people can stop saying things like, “I thought you read a lot of books!” and “you read, isn’t that supposed to make you really smart?” when we don’t turn out to be the first place in class.

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Like everyone else, we could be straight A students, average students or even bad students. Unless the exam is Zombie Survival 101, book related or seeing the world in multiple POVs, I wouldn’t be so quick to bet on all of us getting an A.

4. Antisocial, the lot of us

Yes, some of us may be antisocial, but not all of us. It isn’t right to put all of us in a box and label it “antisocial”. The rest of us could just be more selective about who we spend time with. Personally, I’m not opposed to hanging out with my close friends every once in a while. I usually find myself having more fun than anticipated. For me it’s all about the people I spend time with. With the right people I can be very sociable.

Not to mention, some readers are also social butterflies and happen to enjoy the company of people as much as they do reading.

All that said, there are antisocial bookworms.

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One thing I think we can all agree on:

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To summarize, we are seriously misunderstood beings.

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So, there you have it, my very first discussion post. Keep in mind that was just my opinion on the topic. What are some misconceptions society has had about you? 

Remember to leave a comment and be completely honest, so we can discuss- debate too.

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Love Me, Love Me Not by Alyxandra Harvey || Interview & Giveaway

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Hi everyone! I got to interview Alyxandra Harvey as part of the Love Me, Love Me Not blog tour run by Chapter by Chapter.

Q: Hi! It is such an honor to be able to interview you. I am a huge fan of your work. For those new to you and your books, can you give a description of yourself and the kind of books you write?

A: Thank you! I like to think I write fantastical adventures with kick-ass girls, a little snark, and lots of kissing.

Q: It’s not every day you get characters that turn into swans, or foxes, for that matter. Is there a reason you chose those particular animals?

A: I love shapeshifting stories. There’s something so folklore-y about them. And I think most of us have wondered what animals might be thinking at one point of another—especially when you’re watching your dog chase his tail or lick the couch. I have a corgi who once got totally freaked out over the smell of cooking chicken. My little weirdo. 

I chose foxes because I was working with swan maidens and foxes are one of a swan’s few natural predators. Magic rules should make sense after all!

Q: From Love Me, Love Me Not, which characters would you be, room, cliff? (Any three from the book and feel free to elaborate.)

A: Be: Ana. She has magic powers and is refreshingly un-dramatic.

Room: Roommates with Pierce or Mei Lin. Pierce and I could talk about books. Mei Lin would make me laugh.

Cliff: Can’t say…spoilers!

Q: The Drake Chronicles is one of my favorite series ever and I just have to ask, are there any plans to revisit it? A novella, maybe?

A: Thank you! I miss Lucy and my Drake boys. I always have plans in the back of my head for just one more novella. So it’s definitely possible!

Q: I saw on your Goodreads page that you’ve been accused of being born in the wrong century. Is there a particular century/era that you would have liked to be born in? And if you could bring just one element/tradition from said period to ours, what would it be?

A: Regency, Medieval, Iron Age, Victorian… Too many… brain exploding…. 

I do love the Regency era though which is why I used it as the setting for my Lovegrove Legacy series. The 1800s are like a cozy room in my house where I can curl up with a cup of tea. I finally had a chance to visit Hyde Park last two years ago and I was giddy with joy. I’ve read about it and written about it so much it was wonderful to finally be there in person. 

And I have great empathy for Tasha Tudor…she believed she had been alive in the 1840s and spent much of her life recreating it. She made her own clothes, right down to the weaving. She was a fascinating woman! 

I’d keep my bathroom though. And the electricity, as much as I love candles!

And I would want to go for a carriage ride down Bond Street, live in a grand old house, wear muslin dresses and curtsy at everyone.

As to what I’d bring back….I guess the manners and the frock coats. And the love of poetry. Not the weird jellied foods, or the atrocious treatment of women or servants, or the gossipiness. But that’s the beauty of selective creative history— toothpaste and equality and frock coats for all!

Q: Thank you so much for doing this with me! It really means a lot to me that you’ve taken time out of schedule to answer my questions. 🙂 Before you go, what can fans look forward to from you in the near future?

A: Thanks so much for your questions! I am thinking a lot about Mei Lin’s story next…she’s one of Ana’s cousins and she’d be fun to hang out with.


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Alyxandra Harvey lives in a stone Victorian house in Ontario, Canada with a few resident ghosts who are allowed to stay as long as they keep company manners. She loves medieval dresses, used to be able to recite all of The Lady of Shalott by Tennyson, and has been accused, more than once, of being born in the wrong century. She believes this to be mostly true except for the fact that she really likes running water, women’s rights, and ice cream. Aside from the ghosts, she also lives with her husband and their dogs. She likes cinnamon lattes, tattoos and books.

Connect with the author:  Website | Twitter | Tumblr | Goodreads


Giveaway

  • $200 Amazon Gift Card + Feather Pendant Necklace inspired by the one that Ana, from Love Me, Love Me Not wears

 a Rafflecopter giveaway


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How Willa Got Her Groove Back by Emily McKay || ARC Review

28109100Title: How Willa Got Her Groove Back

Author: Emily McKay

Series: Willa and Finn #1, Creative HeArts #2

Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary

Publisher: Entangled: Crush

Pages: 258 pages, Kindle edition

Publication Date: February 22nd 2016

My Rating: ★★★★½


When your life feels like a bad movie, rewrite the script.

When Willa Schofer’s father comes home from a business trip with an über-famous new fiancée, Willa’s senior year blows up in paparazzi-fueled flames. Overnight, she has a new house, a new car, and a new soon-to-be stepbrother—the unbelievably hot, unbelievably arrogant, Finn McCain. Thank god he’s constantly pushing her buttons, or she might do something irresponsible. Like fall for the jerk.

Just when Willa’s decided to avoid him for, oh, ever, Finn lands in the center of her senior project team. Seriously—how hard is it to shake a guy? At least her work on the project snagged the attention of the (second) hottest guy in school. He might only be into her because of her famous stepmom, and he’s not quite as exciting as a certain annoying housemate, but at least she’s allowed to crush on the guy.

Because crushing on your annoying stepbrother? So not cool.

This Entangled Teen Crush book contains an unbelievably hot bad boy, an unbelievably famous actress, and all the drama that comes with adding both to your family. Oh, and a forbidden flirtation with a soon-to-be stepbrother.


Thank you Entangled for this ARC

My immediate reaction finishing this book:

  • Stare at the last page in disbelief. Reread said page because THERE MUST BE SOMETHING I’M MISSING
  • Look up the author on Twitter and fail at it. Look up the author on Facebook for any clues on her Twitter handle. Handle found. Follow the author on Twitter and send her a desperate tweet:

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  • Grab slices of guava then proceed to pace around the house because clearly by stuffing my face and circling the ground floor of my house the sequel is going to manifest on my Kindle app.
  • Go on Goodreads to see if anyone else had NO CHILL about it like me.
  • A lot of “WHY??” and banging my fists on the coffee table like a petulant kid.

How Willa Got Her Groove Back is the first book in the Willa and Finn series, so, no, it is not a standalone. It is also the second book in the Creative HeArts series. Its predecessor being Ten Things Sloane Hates About Tru by Tera Lynn Childs. You can find my review of it here. You can read HWGHGB without reading the first, but I highly recommend you do because there are recurring characters.

I went into this book expecting a light, fun read with a predictable but satisfying ending, because it’s an Entangled Crush book and I know Entangled Crush books. I know they aren’t supposed to be quite this frustrating or have endings that make you want the sequel the instant you finish the first book because of its lack of closure. There definitely shouldn’t be a CLIFFHANGER. I think I may have counted on its predictability a tad bit too much and now I’m paying the price. My fault, really.

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This book is told in Willa’s POV (first person) and Finn’s POV (third person). This is the first book I’ve read written in such a style and I say it really worked out. The transition between narratives was smooth and easy to follow.

First, you have Willa, who ever since her mother’s passing, has been a team with her father. It was basically them against the world until her father dropped one bomb after another, changing everything in her life. Suddenly, she has a stepmother and stepbrother to-be, a new house which she is reluctant to move into and paparazzi after her.

I really connected with Willa (she was witty and a reader) and could relate to her feelings of indignation and helplessness toward her father’s sudden decision to remarry. Her father was a mess after her mom died, leaving her to pick up the pieces and now she has to sit by and watch him get his heart broken again. I could see why she wasn’t on board with the idea but there were times when I didn’t agree with the choices she made or the things she said. (I thought some of the things Finn said about her were extremely accurate.) Still, I could get where she was coming from. I mean, the life she knew was gone and all of sudden it seemed like it wasn’t her and her father against the world anymore. Not to mention, the guy she’s had a crush on for years suddenly notices her. Is it because of her connection to her famous stepmom-to-be or is he really interested in her?

Finn actually reminded me of Young Do from The Heirs (K-Drama), maybe not as mean but they had similar characteristics.

Really, he had a bike and all.

K-Drama aside, I think Finn is a seriously misunderstood character. If not for the dual POVs, I might have misunderstood him too. Hidden behind his bad boy/surfer charm, there’s a broken soul who never really let anyone in, who grew up without real friends or anyone to trust.

Mia has been in your life your whole life. If you don’t trust anyone who wasn’t in your life before her, then who do you trust?
-Willa

Just like Willa he had to grow up fast and wasn’t on board with his mom’s upcoming nuptials. When he was 11 he had to find a divorce lawyer for his mom and find them a place to stay. All that because of a marriage gone wrong. Can you see why he has his reservations?

So you have 2 broken teenagers who want their parents to be happy, but at the same time don’t want to be the ones to pick up the pieces in the aftermath.

One thing I would’ve liked was more romance. Please! I need more kissing and tension! I need more Finn & Willa in the next books!

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Oooh and it was such a treat to see Tru and Sloane from Ten Things Sloane Hates About Tru again. Recurring characters in books are the best.

I’m not sure how relevant this is to the review but I’m going to say it anyway. I was about 90% into the book and I had a mini panic attack, because it was too close to the end and it didn’t look like it was going where I WANTED IT TO GO. So, now I have to wait for the sequel which comes out in November. NOVEMBER.

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To sum it up, How Willa Got Her Groove Back is a fantastic sequel to the Creative HeArts series and a promising start to the Willa and Finn series. I devoured it in one sitting and was invested in all the characters, even Willa’s friends. One of which is getting her own book, Crazy, Stupid Fauxmance, in April. Can’t wait! 😀


I’m really so impatient for November to come! From now on I am going to approach Entangled: Crush books with caution a.k.a. not expect a predictable ending.

If you’re interested, How Willa Got Her Groove Back will be released on the 22nd of February (tomorrow), be sure to catch it! If you’ve read it and need to gush about it (and Finn) I’m right here! Bye for now! ❤

 

1 Year Blogiversary!

Hi everyone! Today morning I woke up and got a notification on WordPress informing me that I’ve been blogging on Head in the Clouds, Heart in the Books for one whole year!

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I can’t believe it’s already been a year since I created this blog. A year well spent with you amazing, diverse people.

I could cite stats and follower count and stuff like that, but those seem trivial in comparison to the memories I created with you lovelies. So instead of attempting to one up that, I just want to say thank you for an entire year of your companionship. Thank you for the comments. To be honest, 365 days of this blogging thing hasn’t dampened the excitement I feel reading your comments. (The fact that I write anything worthy of getting comments is surprising, says the self-deprecating voice in my head. ) Thank you for the fangirling. Because, really, who else can I freak out with over fictional worlds and equally fictional men?

Looking back at my blog and its posts, I realise that it isn’t very personal. All you really see is this teen fangirl who is crazy in love with books and fictional characters. I assure you there is much more to me than that. So for this second year and the many years to come (hopefully), I strive to be more personal on my blog.

To start, here’s a little about me:

• I try my best to be honest with everyone and appreciate it when they are honest with me. It has mostly worked, except for when I get asked about my feelings. At that, I have grown skilled at lying or at least, sidestepping the truth. Because, what I’ve learned- the hard way- is that everyone will ask you how you feel about this and that, but only some actually care about what you have to say. The rest just ask for the sake of asking. Even worse are the ones who judge you for it. I know I sound bitter, but that’s really not my intention. For me it’s just facts that I have come to terms with. Which is why those that truly care and can find it in them not to be judgemental, are some of the rarest, most beautiful souls to walk the earth. For them, I am grateful everyday.

• I’ve liked baking since I was little, when my mom and I used to bake together and she’d do the ‘grown up’ stuff and I’d handle the kiddie parts, like adding in chocolate chips and eating the cookie dough- something I haven’t grown out of. I was convinced that we should bypass the actual baking part and get right to eating the cookie dough. Actually, I’m still convinced.

• One of my all time favourite movies is Love, Rosie. I re-watch it all the time and I cry every single time. If you haven’t watched it yet, I highly recommend you do.

That’s all for today. Once again, thank you so much for 1 year of blogging! I hope to interact more with you, fellow bloggers, in the years to come. Giant hugs to everyone! ❤

OTPs Are Everywhere

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Hello bookworms! It’s Valentine’s Day! In conjunction with that, I have decided to post a Valentine’s Day/love related list. This post is going to be a list of my bookish OTPs. It isn’t going to be easy, picking out fourteen out of possibly hundreds (I exaggerate), but I’ll try my best.

Follow the hearts…

❤ ❤ ❤

Derek ❤︎ Chloe

from

The Darkest Powers series by Kelley Armstong

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“So,” I said. “Seems you’re going to be stuck with me for a while.”
He smiled. A real smile that lit up his whole face.
“Good,” he said.

“You’re crying?” he said.
“No, I- ” I tore my gaze away. “Just dust. From the path. Simon’s that way.”
I tried to pass him, but he stooped, trying to get a loom of my face. When I wouldn’t let him, he caught my chin. I jerked back, flinching at his touch, heart thudding at it, too.
I told myself Simon was wrong. I’d never be dumb enough to fall for Derek. But I had. With him so close, my stomach kept doing weird flips. It wasn’t fear. It hadn’t been fear for awhile.
“You have been crying,” he said, voice softer.”

I ship these two so much!! It took so long for them to get together, which was understandable but no less frustrating. I even got my mom to read this series and you know what? She ships them too. I reread this series all the time- even now when I have so many books unread- and I always look forward to the parts with them. Okay, okay, I even skip pages to get to them.


Yelena ❤︎ Valek

from

The Study series by Maria V. Snyder

“You’re right. And so was my snake.”
“Snake?”
He pulled my arm out to expose my bracelet. “When I carved this my thoughts were on you, love. Your life is like this snake’s coils. No matter how many turns it makes, you’ll end up back where you belong. With me.”

“Yelena, you’ve driven me crazy. You’ve caused me considerable trouble and I’ve contemplated ending your life twice since I’ve known you…but you slipped under my skin, invaded my blood and seized my heart.”

“When you warned me that you would test me from time to time, I thought you meant spiking my food. But it seems there is more than one way to poison a person’s heart, and it doesn’t even require a meal.”

These two are so intense! Together they make a power couple and are equals in every way. I can’t begin to explain how happy I am that Maria V. Snyder is continuing on with this series because it’s one of my favorites (and OTP, remember?). If you’re one for Fantasy, give this series a go and fall in love!


Clary ❤︎ Jace (Clace)

from

The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare

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“There is no pretending,” Jace said with absolute clarity. “I love you, and I will love you until I die and if there’s a life after that, I’ll love you then.”

“And now I’m looking at you,” he said, “and you’re asking me if I still want you, as if I could stop loving you. As if I would want to give up the thing that makes me stronger than anything else ever has. I never dared give much of myself to anyone before – bits of myself to the Lightwoods, to Isabelle and Alec, but it took years to do it – but, Clary, since the first time I saw you, I have belonged to you completely. I still do. If you want me.”

“I stabbed you. With a massive sword. You caught on fire.”
His lips twitched, almost imperceptibly. “Okay, so maybe our problems aren’t like other couples.”

Am I the only one who pictures Lily Collins and Jamie Campbell Bower as Jace and Clary when reading the books? Because I seriously cannot envision any other actors as them (Jace & Clary).


Magnus Bane ❤︎ Alec (Malec)

from

The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare

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“I’m—sorry about being a lousy date,” Alec muttered.

“What are you talking about?” Magnus asked. “You’re a fantastic date. You’ve only been here ten minutes, and I already got half of your clothes off.”

“I think of myself as a freewheeling bisexual,” added Magnus.
“Please never say those words in front of my parents,” said Alec. “Especially my father.”

“So I’m your first ever Shadowhunter, huh?” Alec said when they separated at last.
“You’re my first so many things, Alec Lightwood.”

Ahh, I cannot even with this couple! MALEC FOREVER!


Isabelle ❤︎ Simon (Sizzy)

from

The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare

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Simon hid the fact that he was inordinately pleased by this. “Are we officially boyfriend and girlfriend? Is there a Shadowhunter ritual? Should I change my Facebook status from ‘it’s complicated’ to ‘in a relationship’?”
Isabelle screwed up her nose adorably. “You have a book that’s also a face?”

“I am here to determine my relationship.”
Simon goggled. She couldn’t be talking about him. Could she?
“Do you see that man?” Isabelle asked, pointing at Simon. Apparently she was talking about him. “That’s Simon Lewis, and he is my boyfriend. So if any of you think about trying to hurt him because he’s a mundie or–may the Angel have mercy on your soul–pursuing him romantically, I will come after you, I will hunt you down and I will crush you to powder.”

“Oh, Lord Montgomery, what do you mean to do with me in this bedroom when you have me all alone? An innocent maiden, and unprotected? Is my virtue safe?

‘I, ah- what?’

‘I know you are a dangerous man. Some call you a rake. Everybody knows you are a devil with the ladies with your poetically puffed shirt and irresistible pants. I pray you will consider my innocence. And my poor, vulnerable heart.’

Simon decided this was a lot like role-playing in D&D, but potentially more fun.”

As you can already tell, these two are dorkishly adorable!


Jem ❤︎ Tessa (Jessa)

from

The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare

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“You speak of sacrifice, but it is not my sacrifice I offer. It is yours I ask of you,” he went on. “I can offer you my life, but it is a short life; I can offer you my heart, though I have no idea how many more beats it shall sustain. But I love you enough to hope that you wil not care that I am being selfish in trying to make the rest of my life – whatever length – happy, by spending it with you. I want to be married to you, Tessa. I want it more than I have ever wanted anything else in my life.” He looked up at her through the veil of silvery hair that fell over his eyes. “That is,” he said shyly, “if you love me, too.”

“Wo wei ni xie de,” he said, as he raised the violin to his left shoulder, tucking it under his chin. He had told her many violinists used a shoulder rest, but he did not: there was a slight mark on the side of his throat, like a permanent bruise, where the violin rested.

“You — made something for me?” Tessa asked.

“I wrote something for you,” he corrected, with a smile, and began to play.”

“I can offer you my life, but it is a short life; I can offer you my heart, though I have no idea how many more beats it shall sustain.”

ASDFGHJKL


Will ❤︎ Tessa (Wessa)

from

The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare

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He seemed to realize she was staring at him, because the cursing stopped. “You cut me,” he said. His voice was pleasant. British. Very ordinary. He looked at his hand with critcal interest. “It might be fatal.”
Tessa looked at him with wide eyes. “Are you the Magister?”
He tilted his hand to the side. Blood ran down it, spattering the floor. “Dear me, massive blood loss. Death could be imminent.”

He bent to put his cheek against hers. His breath against her ear made her shudder with each deliberately spoken word. “I have wanted to do this,” he said, “every moment of every hour of every day that I have been with you since the day I met you.”

“I thought perhaps that when you told me you did not love me that my own feelings would fall away and atrophy, but they have not. They have grown every day. I love you now more desperately, this moment, than I have ever loved you before, and in an hour I will love you more than that”

I know, I know. Jessa and Wessa? le sigh Can you blame me though?


Magnus ❤︎ Cleo

from

The Falling Kingdoms series by Morgan Rhodes

Magnus had come to a horrible realization. One that he knew would cause him nothing but pain and suffering from that day forward.
But there was no changing the truth of it.
He had fallen in love with her.

“In the shadow my father has cast over my entire life, you are the only light I can see anymore. And, whatever the cost, I refuse to let that light be extinguished”

She was his princess. No. She was his goddess. With her golden skin and golden hair. She was his light. His life. His everything.
He loved her more than anything else in this world.

I hardcore ship these two people. HARDCORE.

Maybe it’s because the thought of waiting for the next book in the series, Crystal Storm, is agonizing, but I haven’t finished Frozen Tides. I really need to though, because more Cleo+Magnus= happy shipper.


Shahrzad ❤︎ Khalid

from

The Wrath and the Dawn duology by Renee Ahdieh

“What are you doing to me, you plague of a girl?” he whispered.
“If I’m a plague, then you should keep your distance, unless you plan on being destroyed.” The weapons still in her grasp, she shoved against his chest.
“No.” His hands dropped to her waist. “Destroy me.”

“Her conviction wavered further. “I told you; don’t try to own me.”
“I don’t want to own you.”

She swiveled her neck to meet his gaze. “Then never speak of sending me away again. I am not yours to do with as you will.”

Khalid’s features smoothed knowingly. “How right you are. You are not mine.” He dropped his palm from the door. “I am yours.”

“You are ridiculous, Khalid Ibn al-Rashid. I am just one girl. You are the Caliph of Khorasan, and you have a responsibility to a kingdom.”
“If you are just one girl, I am just one boy.”

I just cannot even with this couple. Words cannot describe the beauty of this pair and book. Not to mention that letter at the end. Do you remember? Do you? If you do, you understand my pain.

May cannot come soon enough.


Eleanor ❤︎ Park

from

Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

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Eleanor was right. She never looked nice. She looked like art, and art wasn’t supposed to look nice; it was supposed to make you feel something.

He made her feel like more than the sum of her parts.

“Nothing before you counts,” he said. “And I can’t even imagine an after.”

She shook her head. “Don’t.”

“What?”

“Don’t talk about after.”

“I just meant that… I want to be the last person who ever kisses you, too…. That sounds bad, like a death threat or something. What I’m trying to say is, you’re it. This is it for me.”

To speak of this couple would be to speak of the ending and we don’t speak of the ending. Ever. Therefore, we shall not speak of this couple.


So, there you have it, 10 of my OTPs to help you celebrate Valentine’s Day. Single or not, I hope that added some looove to your day. Do we share any OTPs? Do you find them as swoon worthy as I do? LET’S FANGIRL TOGETHER! 😀 Happy Valentine’s Day and chat with you soon! ❤

January 2016 || Looking Back

Looking Back

Hello everyone! Looking Back is a new monthly feature on this blog. It’s basically a recap of a specific month that I’ll be posting on the 1st or 2nd of every month. This will give you an insight on how I spent my month, involving both bookish and non-bookish elements. It also let’s me keep track of time and my progress, because let’s be real, a month can fly by without me really knowing what I did and I dislike coming out of a month with nothing to show for it.


Books

Books read/reviewed in January:

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  • Infinity by Sherrilyn Kenyon- 4 stars || Review
  • Not Okay Cupid by Heidi R. Kling- 4.5 stars || Review
  • The Girlfriend Request by Jodie Andrefski- 3 stars || Review
  • Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard- 3.5 stars
  • The Probability of Miracles by Wendy Wunder- 4.5 stars
  • The Secret to Letting Go by Katherine Fleet || Review

Total books read: 6

Book of the month: The Secret to Letting Go by Katherine Fleet

Books acquired in January:

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  • School of Deaths by Christopher Mannino || Review copy
  • The Truth Spell by Anita Oh || Review copy
  • Thief of Lies by Brenda Drake || ebook
  • Truthwitch by Susan Dennard || ebook
  • Mercury Striking by Rebecca Zanetti || e-ARC
  • Love Me, Love Me Not by Alyxandra Harvey || e-ARC
  • Holding Court by K.C. Held || e-ARC
  • How Willa Got Her Groove Back by Emily McKay || e-ARC
  • The Secret to Letting Go by Katherine Fleet || e-ARC (Reviewed)
  • The Girlfriend Request by Jodie Andrefski || e-ARC (Reviewed)
  • Not Okay, Cupid by Heidi R. Kling || e-ARC (Reviewed)

Total books acquired: 11

Goodreads 2016 Reading Challenge:

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Blogging

Posts in January:

Total posts: 7


Movies

Movies watched in the cinema:

I only watched one movie in the cinema this month which is The 5th Wave. My friends and I watched it on the first day of release and it was so good. Can’t compare it to the book since I haven’t read it yet but as a movie it’s enjoyable. And umm… the eye candy didn’t hurt either. 😉


TV Shows/ K-Dramas

TV Shows I watched in January:

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  • The Shannara Chronicles || Ep 1-5
  • Shadowhunters || Ep 1-3
  • DC’s Legends of Tomorrow || Ep 1-2
  • Grandfathered || Ep 10-13

K-Dramas I watched in January (first time watching):

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K-Dramas I watched in January (rewatch):

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For the K-Dramas if you click on the title you’ll be sent to its Drama Cool page where you can watch it with English subtitles. 🙂


Music

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I spent the second half of January obsessing over Panic! At the Disco and Brendon Urie’s exceptional vocals. I remember hearing ‘I Write Sins Not Tragedies’ and ‘Nine in the Afternoon’ when I was way too young to actually get what the songs meant, especially Nine in the Afternoon. “But there’s no nine in the afternoon?”, the confusion was real and I think my parents were more than a little reluctant to explain to me the significance of the lyrics.

I stumbled upon ‘Nine in the Afternoon’ on Youtube recently, nostalgia hit and I somehow ended up listening to lots of their songs, even the latest album, Death of a Bachelor. So, now I can’t seem to stop listening to their songs, I’m actually listening to a playlist of them right now. My favorite changes constantly, but right now it’s ‘LA Devotee’. Or ‘Death of a Bachelor’. ‘Hallelujah’? ‘This is Gospel’, maybe?


Miscellaneous

  • I refrained from going to the recent Big Bad Wolf Double Trouble book and poster sale. I deserve a cookie.
  • Keira @ Signing On started a book club that Jackie @ fallinlovewithesoundofwords and I now co-own. You can check it out here.
  • I stayed up everyday till 3/4 a.m.. I feel like I’m able to get more things done at that time and I have trouble falling asleep, so…
  • I ended up re-reading more books than reading new books.
  • Every waking hour that wasn’t already occupied was spent stressing over college and my future. Now that I think of it, I even stressed while I was busy.
  • I don’t think anything else significant happened. To be honest, January passed in a blur of entertainment interlaced with stress and keeping myself busy.

    Overall

    Like I said, January was a blur and came to an end much sooner than I expected it to. 6 books really isn’t much for someone done with high school. I’ll be upping my game for February and hopefully no reading slumps will get in my way of slaying my TBR. It was a good month for TV shows and K-Dramas though, so I’m hoping to keep it up in February. As for movies, a film that I wanted to watch but didn’t get the chance to was The Boy. I might catch that with my friends this month along with Deadpool (YAY!). In terms of music I’m glad I got to really discover Panic! At the Disco.


    What do you think? Would you like to see more of these posts? Personally, I enjoyed doing this and found it oddly relaxing. Anyway, how did your January go? If you posted your own recap, leave a link in the comments and I’ll check it out. Share your thoughts with me! Hugs. ❤

The Secret to Letting Go by Katherine Fleet || ARC Review

28601381Title: The Secret to Letting Go

Author: Katherine Fleet

Series: –

Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary

Publisher: Entangled: digiTeen

Pages: 367 pages, Kindle Edition

Publication Date: February 1st 2016

My Rating: ★★★★½


One summer can change everything…

Haunted with guilt after his girlfriend’s death, Daniel Hudson has no interest in committing to anyone. At the end of the summer, he’ll be leaving Florida for a new start in college. If only he could avoid the mysterious new girl in town, who seems every bit as naive and eccentric as she looks. Trouble is, she’s hard to ignore, with her beautiful piercing eyes, pitiful-looking dog, and unsettling tendency of finding trouble.

Clover Scott lived her whole life off the grid and arrives on the Gulf coast in search of her grandparents. She never expected to nearly drown, or get caught in a hurricane, or fall in love with the boy who rescues her. Now, she has a chance to rewrite her life’s story, to finally fit in somewhere, but Daniel wants answers about her past. When the police start asking questions about the disappearance of her parents, she must make a choice: go to jail or confess her secrets—even if they might destroy her chance at a happily-ever-after.


Hi all! I just finished reading this book and here I am writing this review- already! I usually give myself some time to think about the book and my thoughts on it, but this time is different because I already have my thoughts sorted out and I know exactly what to say. So, let’s get on with it!

If you’re new to my blog, you should know that I just can’t stay away from Entangled Teen books. I was drawn to The Secret of Letting Go the moment I saw its cover and read the blurb. (Because YA with some mystery and published by Entangled is so on. So on. Pretty cover’s just a bonus, guys.) 😀

I feel like this is a book you need to go into not knowing much, so you can properly enjoy the surprises and plot. What you need to know is that this book is beautifully written and will suck you in like a vortex. The writing while straightforward, is beautiful in an effortless way. The story alternates between Daniel and Clover in first person POV every few chapters or so.

Clover is unlike any character I’ve encountered before. She had her share of secrets and lies but she when it came to things not related to her past, she was so honest and straightforward. She didn’t see the need to lie about the way she felt or beat around the bush when she wanted to know something. Whether it’s about kissing or her feelings, she’ll just come right out and say what’s on her mind, often putting others on the spot. Having grown up the way she did, she was also pretty clueless about boys and social events. So she often spoke about those matters in a somewhat innocent manner. It was so refreshing to see the world the way Clover did. With innocence, wonder and compassion- unjaded by her past.

Daniel on the other hand is the exact opposite. He had the tendency to overthink and complicate everything. He liked to see things logically and was tinged with sadness after his girlfriend’s death, which he blamed himself for. I feel like he ran a bit hot and cold throughout the book but like he said, he’s not perfect and you can tell he put it a lot of effort. He had his own demons to face but he was always ready to defend/save Clover. Like Clover he has his flaws but that just makes them more believable.

Together, Clover and Daniel made a perfect team. They had a lot to teach and learn from each other, which they did. Clover changed the way Daniel saw and did things. She taught him to see and savor the finer things in life. Together, they lived in the moment until they couldn’t and had to face what was coming. Their relationship isn’t an easy, rosy one but it’s realistic and so are the choices they make.

Not only was I invested in the main characters, the supporting characters also had my attention. I loved Amelia, Daniel’s twin sister, who is the opposite of him with her tendency to act before thinking. I am now convinced that Amelia and Sam, Daniel’s best friend, need their own book because I need more of their relationship. Make it happen, please!

This book keeps you guessing what’s going to happen next and exactly what happened in the past. It’s like a puzzle and you’re given pieces of the puzzle gradually, so you have to connect the dots as you go and maybe you’re right, maybe you’re not. The only way to know is to keep reading.

Kudos to Katherine Fleet for keeping it real. I realised there were a lot of times where she could have taken the easy way out and just handed us a HEA, but she didn’t. She made it realistic, even if that meant asking the hard questions and going the long way. So you get full closure and nothing’s left unresolved.

One of the matters this book addresses is our habit of taking things for granted. To be honest, we are all guilty of that crime. We get so used to our luxuries and having our family and friends around that we stop appreciating them like we should. Seeing Clover and how foreign basic things are to her and the thrill of having loved ones, it makes you grateful for what you have. I just wanted to hug everyone after reading this book.

Overall, The Secret to Letting Go is a story about facing your fears, putting the past behind you but not hiding from it, and sacrifice. It’s fast paced and hooking so you will not be able to put it down, nor will you want to. I know I was hooked to it from the start to finish, and read it in one sitting, ignoring the rest of the world but only temporarily. I highly recommend this book to everyone. We can all learn a thing or two about life from Clover and Daniel.

We can’t change the past. All we can do is move forward.


That’s it for this review. I hope you enjoyed it and consider checking out The Secret of Letting Go because it truly is an exceptional book. If you’ve already read it, how did you find it? Chat with me in the comments! Hugs. ❤