Saturday, December 31, 2016

Books: Beat the Backlist Challenge 2017


One of my goals for 2017 is again to read from my own shelves. I participated in #RockMyTBR in 2016 and accomplished what I set out to do, but I wanted to try something different this year. I was just going to go about completing a "Read From My Own Shelves" type challenge myself, without participating in one already out there, but then I stumbled across the Beat the Backlist Challenge which is hosted by NovelKnight.


This one had some fun Hogwarts mini-challenges, so I decided I wanted to give this one a try this time around. I will be participating as part of Ravenclaw house for those mini challenges! This challenge is also perfect for me because I do not read a lot of new release books. I'd say less than ten percent of the books I read in one year are new releases.

Now on to my TBR. I decided to post 26 titles as my plan is to read 52 novels in 2017. Not all of these books will be from my personal library as there are series that I would like to finish which I don't own the books to. This is just a tentative list as I am a mood reader, so I don't know what may fit my fancy at any one time. I will try to read from this list, but no promises!

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Manga: Series I'll Be Reading in 2017


A little peek into some of the manga series I'll be getting into in 2017! These are from my latest shipment from Right Stuf. Of these titles, the only series I have started is Vampire Doll. The rest of the series shown, I have been collecting slowly. Super excited to jump into these next year!

#mangaarebookstoo #fruitsbasket #thesevenprincesofthethousandyearlabyrinth #oftheredthelightandtheayakashi #servamp #behindthescenes #vampiredoll #haikyuu #kurokonobasuke #tokyoghoul #yowamushipedal

Friday, December 23, 2016

Crochet: TARDIS Pillow


I crocheted this TARDIS Pillow for one of my daughter's friends for Christmas. The graph is from the Two Hearts Crochet Whovian CAL. I worked it in bobble stitch combo, which is single crochets on the everything but the TARDIS, bobble stitch for the TARDIS. I used reverse single crochet around the edge and backed it with fleece. I'm pretty happy with how this turned out!

Thursday, December 15, 2016

#Book1CoziesClub: January Books of the Month


Short and sweet video for January's selections!

At Wick's End (Candlemaking Mysteries #1) by Tim Myers - this one is 99 cents at the below sites!

Pretty Poison (Peggy Lee Garden Mysteries #1) by Jim and Joyce Lavene
Please join us in discussing these books in the Mystery Madness Goodreads Group in January ^-^

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on Re-reading Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Harry Potter #3)

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Picked this up again for #HarryXmasToYou since I didn't finish it last year. Decided to start it over from the beginning. I always say that this book is my least favorite of the series, but that doesn't mean that I dislike it by any means. Obviously, I still really enjoyed this read. I think though, out of the entire series, this is the only one that I've read just one time. That being said, I forgot the differences in this book from the film! So glad that I revisited this one and refreshed my memory.

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Monday, December 12, 2016

Books: November Wrap Up



I hope you're comfortable, because this is a long one! I read 15 things in November. I did not separate out the manga this month, so if you're only interested in listening to my thoughts on the manga I read, please skip to 30:30 in the video. Since this video is so long, I'll link my written reviews for the novels and novella after the break in case you'd like to read my thoughts instead. If you'd prefer me to link my written reviews in the future on these videos instead of the Goodreads pages, please let me know ^-^

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on Summerfall: A Winterspell Novella

Summerfall: A Winterspell Novella Summerfall: A Winterspell Novella by Claire Legrand
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This novella had me hooked from the beginning. I am curious how this sets up Winterspell, which I will be reading next. If the storytelling is anything like this novella though, I know I'm going to love that too.

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Thursday, December 1, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on Flip That Haunted House (Haunted Renovation Mystery #1)

Flip That Haunted House Flip That Haunted House by Rose Pressey
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Read as part of #Book1CoziesClub

Synopsis (from Goodreads): Alabama Hargrove has a new, sure-fire, money-making scheme up her sleeve:
house flipper. So what if she knows zilch about renovating homes--how hard
can it be?

Tougher than she thought when she discovers ghosts inhabiting the run-down
mansion and the corpse of the previous owner. Oh yeah, and now the local sheriff thinks Alabama is the killer.

Holy house rehab, what's next? Reed O'Hara, the sexy know-it-all next door neighbor that's what. Alabama is hell-bent on proving she can handle the fixer-upper. Plus, unravel the mystery and find the killer. But if she's not careful, she may end up in the house forever...

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I really enjoyed this book. It was right down my alley with the mix of paranormal along side amateur sleuthing. I laughed out loud a few times and really enjoyed the progression of the story. Especially loved the fact that there is no love triangle!

I also purchased the narration from Audible and enjoyed that presentation. Will definitely be reading more of this author's work and definitely recommend this title.

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Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on The Great Turkey Caper (Agnes Barton Holiday Mystery Novellas #1)

The Great Turkey Caper The Great Turkey Caper by Madison Johns
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Read as part of #Book1CoziesClub

Synopsis (from Goodreads): As Thanksgiving approaches, the holiday is not the only thing on everyone’s mind in Tawas. Bagging the huge, yet elusive, tom turkey is—with a prize of five thousand dollars. That is, until the body of a meter reader turns up on Bernice’s property shot with an arrow!

Agnes is flabbergasted. Not at the murder, but at Bernice trying to drag the body off her property. When Bernice’s reputation as the cat lady is finally unveiled, she joins forces with Agnes and Eleanor to solve The Great Turkey Caper.

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This book was just ok for me. I probably should've read the original series before picking this up, but because it was a holiday themed book, I really wanted to pick it up during the season. This did not have a character summary or any back story at all. It just jumped into this story like a continuation of a series, which is not a bad thing - but for me it was just slightly. I found it odd that there wasn't any backstory or anything because I've found with other series I've read that there would be at least a little in a sequel, but this had none. That made it really hard to connect with the main characters because I didn't know where they were coming from.

I found the style of questioning to be more like how a teen would go about sleuthing rather than an adult. I also didn't understand why people were so willing to provide the pair with the answers they were seeking instead of questioning more as to what their authorization to question them would be. That whole part of the story was very unrealistic to me. After reading this, I'm still not sure what their qualifications are past the fact that they've provided tips to the police in prior investigations, which lead to cases being closed.

This was a very fast read for me and I probably could've picked it up in a day if I didn't only read a couple chapters at a time. Other than the above points, the story was interesting enough to keep me returning to it and I didn't figure out who the culprit was until it was revealed, which is always a good thing. I will be trying the author's paranormal series with this character next as I think that may be right down my alley, instead of starting with the first in the regular series.

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Friday, November 25, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on The Titanic Murders (Disaster Series #1)

The Titanic Murders The Titanic Murders by Max Allan Collins
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I have always enjoyed things about Titanic, whether it be documentaries, TV shows/movies, or fictional stories though I haven't read too many. This was just the right amount of mystery interwoven with the feel of what it was like to be a passenger on this ship. This book does take a while to get to the mystery aspect of the story, but I didn't mind that.

All the figures I was familiar with were present in the story, as well as some that were new to me. The Epilogue and Author's Notes at the end were very interesting and enlightening. I really enjoyed this book and though the following installments in this series have nothing to do with Titanic, I am interested to learn about the different settings the author has chosen for the following stories.

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Thursday, November 24, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on A Deadly Grind (Vintage Kitchen Mysteries #1)

A Deadly Grind A Deadly Grind by Victoria Hamilton
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

More like a 3.5 - read as part of #Book1CoziesClub

Synopsis (from Goodreads): A Hoosier to die for?When vintage cookware and cookbook collector Jaymie Leighton spies an original 1920s Hoosier brand kitchen cabinet at an estate auction, it’s love at first sight. Despite the protests of her sister that the 19th-century yellow-brick house they share in Michigan is already too cluttered with Jaymie’s “junk,” she successfully outbids the other buyers and triumphantly takes home her Hoosier.

But that night on the summer porch where they’ve left the Hoosier to be cleaned up, a man is murdered, struck on the head with  the steel meat grinder that is part of the cabinet. Who is this stranger—and what was he doing on their porch? Does his death have anything to do with the Hoosier?

As the police struggle to determine the man’s identity, Jaymie can’t help doing a little digging on her own, accompanied by her three-legged Yorkie Poo, Hopalong. But in her bid to uncover the truth about the hidden secrets of the Hoosier, Jaymie may be the one who ends up going, going…gone.


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This was an enjoyable read but a bit slower in pace for me. I did enjoy the mystery aspect and the perpetrator's numerous attempts, however the end reveal was unfolded really slow for my tastes. I remember listening to the audio and thinking, ok here it is....but there was over an hour left in the audiobook! Needless to say, the reveal did drag on a bit too long for me.

I did figure out a few things pretty early on and some of the attempts to deflect suspicion to another character was just ridiculous to me. It just wasn't realistic to think that character was a person of interest in my opinion. I did appreciate that there was no sign of a love triangle for the majority of the book, but there is a definite possibility for one in the series, I think.

This one comes with 2 different versions of a recipe and I will be continuing on to the next volume in the series.

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Tuesday, November 15, 2016

#Book1CoziesClub: December Books of the Month



Announcing December's Selections for the First in a Series Cozy Mystery Book Club. One was a suggestion from Elizabeth at LizzyFayeLovesBooks, and the other was pulled from the jar.

Mistletoe Murder (Lucy Stone Mysteries) by Leslie Meier

High Rhymes and Misdemeanors (Poetic Death Mysteries) by Diana Killian - as of the time I posted this, it's 99 cents for a Kindle copy and free for Nook & Kobo copies!

Elizabeth's Channel

Mystery Madness Goodreads Group

Monday, November 14, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on Catering to Nobody (Goldy Bear Culinary Mysteries #1)

Catering to Nobody Catering to Nobody by Diane Mott Davidson
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Read as part of #Book1CoziesClub.

Synopsis (from Goodreads):  Catering the wake of her son's favorite teacher is not Goldy's idea of fun. Particularly when her former father-in-law passes out, nearly felled by a dose of rat poison.

Investigating officer Tom Schultz, though smitten with Goldy and her food, is forced to shut down her business. That's the last straw. Goldy can't cater without a kitchen, so she'll just have to find the rat who poisoned the coffee.

Everyone - from Goldy's ex-husband's other ex-wife to her eleven-year-old son Arch - seems to know more than Goldy does. But as she begins following the recipe to its logical conclusion, Goldy discovers that some very unsavory ingredients are flavoring the neighborhood and poisoning her own family with the bitter taste of deceit and revenge.


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Of all the Cozies I've read recently, this one took me the longest, I think. I started out listening to this on audiobook, but the narrator wasn't clicking for me. Goldy as a character turned out to be really whiny when I listened to her, so I ended up abandoning the audiobook.

Since I owned a physical copy, I stuck to that for the rest of the book. Goldy still got on my nerves as I felt she was really pushy and more nosy than any other amateur sleuth I've encountered. I also did not agree with her parenting choices or the way she handled situations with her ex-husband. Some of the choices the author made in regards to describing Marla's stature got to me and there was a comment made about Japanese people that also bothered me.

I am glad that I finally got to this book, as I own several of the installments in this series. Though this installment wasn't super enjoyable, I will give the series another shot before I decide for sure if I will be continuing on or not. This did come with three recipes which do sound delicious and I have jotted those down to try later.

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Friday, November 11, 2016

Manga: October Wrap Up Part 3



The final part of my October Wrap Up. This includes the 5 volumes of manga I read in October. Goodreads links to the series mentioned below:

Fairy Tail by Hiro Mashima

Noragami by Adachitoka

Blood+ by Asuka Katsura

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on The Haunting Season

The Haunting Season The Haunting Season by Michelle Muto
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Such a great read! I was looking for a book to fit the Haunted House challenge for Read Your EReader Readathon and came across this in Kindle Unlimited. It sounded really interesting and I was still in the mood for a creepy read, even though Halloween was over, so I thought I'd give this a shot. It was also a very nice surprise to find out that the audiobook was narrated by one of my favorite narrators!

I don't think that my tolerance for creepy things is very high, but this had me jump a few times. Though I was sufficiently scared at certain parts of this book, especially heading to the end, I could not stop reading! This definitely has a similar feeling to the movie The Haunting, as well as Stephen King's mini-series Rose Red - at least for me. Both of those are favorites of mine, so that just made this even more enjoyable.

I'll definitely be checking out more of this author's work in the future.

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Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Books: October Wrap Up Part 2 - More Novels



This part contains the other three novels that I read in October. Goodreads links to books metioned can be found after the break.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Books: October Wrap Up Part 1 - Novels



I actually read 12 things in October! Quite a change of pace, since the last couple months have been rather slow in the reading department. The number of novels actually surpassed the number of manga volumes I read ^-^ The wrap up ended up being really long this month. Guess I had a lot of things to say! I cut it into three videos this month. This part includes the first four novels. Links to the books mentioned can be found after the break.

Monday, October 31, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on Halloween Night

Halloween Night Halloween Night by R.L. Stine
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

More like a 3.5

I've been wanting to re-read the collection of books that I've had since I was a teen. Since this one was perfectly titled for the season, I decided to pick it up. Truthfully, I didn't even remember the story, so this was like a first read through for me.

It was a fast, easy read. Enjoyable, but the rivalry between the cousins and their antics got irritating after a while. I suppose that may have something to do with the fact that I'm reading it as an adult. Still, towards the end I still had no idea how this would turn out. I do have the sequel to this book, so I'm looking forward to jumping into that shortly.

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Friday, October 28, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on Bird Box

Bird BoxBird Box by Josh Malerman

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed this book. It's been a while since I've read anything creepy and this had just enough of it to keep me on my toes. Truthfully it is probably one of the best books I read all year. So now you're wondering why I didn't give it 5 stars.

What really lowered the rating for me was our main character Malorie. I just could not get behind some of the things she did or the way she acted. The way she raised her children could be classified as abuse, both physical and mental.

I do understand that in the world that this book occurs in, you couldn't possibly know how you yourself would act if raising children, but I don't agree with how she went about it. As a mom myself, she really boiled my blood and I couldn't bring myself to really care about her. I actually liked her better before she became a mom and am glad that with the way this book is formatted, we get to see that.

The ending of this book is another small issue for me. That being said, the longer I'm away from the book, the more I find myself wondering about the world. Maybe the end of this book doesn't actually bother me as much as I had originally thought.

If you haven't read this yet, I'd definitely recommend it. It wasn't creepy enough to keep me up at night, but it did hold just the right amount of creepiness and suspense to keep me reading.

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Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on A Perfect Crime

A Perfect CrimeA Perfect Crime by A Yi

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

In all honesty this is probably a 1.5 and not a 2.

Did I enjoy this book? No. Is it a book that's meant to be enjoyed? I don't think so. Then why did you pick up this book? I thought that with a title like A Perfect Crime, this would be a great crime novel. Was it a perfect crime or wasn't it? But I was mistaken.

I can't even say why I disliked this so much without giving things away. I guess what I can say is that the narrative was very harsh and in the end, what I got out of reading this does not equal the time I took to read it and I am very disappointed.

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Monday, October 24, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on Brownies and Broomsticks (Magical Bakery Mystery #1)

Brownies and Broomsticks (A Magical Bakery Mystery, #1)Brownies and Broomsticks by Bailey Cates

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Read as part of #Book1CoziesClub

Synopsis (from Goodreads): Katie Lightfoot’s tired of loafing around as the assistant manager of an Ohio bakery. So when her Aunt Lucy and Uncle Ben open a bakery in Savannah’s quaint downtown district and ask Katie to join them, she enthusiastically agrees.

In the Honeybee Bakery—named after Lucy’s cat—Katie notices that her aunt is adding mysterious herbs to her recipes. Turns out these herbal enhancements aren’t just tasty—Aunt Lucy is a witch and her recipes are actually spells!

But when a curmudgeonly customer is murdered outside the Honeybee Bakery, Uncle Ben becomes the prime suspect. With the help of handsome journalist Steve Dawes, charming firefighter Declan McCarthy, and a few spells, Katie and Aunt Lucy will stir up some toil and trouble to clear Ben’s name and find the real killer.


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This was one of October's selections for the First in a Series Cozy Mystery Book Club. I really enjoyed it! I listened to the entire book on audiobook and thought the narrator was very good. I did not know who the culprit was until the end and all of the goodies in the bakery sounded absolutely scrumptious.

The romantic storyline being set up bothered me a bit in the beginning but it didn't play too much of a roll in the story at all, which I appreciated. After the crime was solved, I thought that the book ended on a very appropriate note. I'm curious to see what becomes of that.

I will definitely be continuing on with this series and look forward to the next installment along with its recipes.


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Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on Spy High: Mission One (Spy High #1)

Spy High Mission OneSpy High Mission One by A.J. Butcher

My rating: 3 of 5 stars


Entertaining but it definitely has it's eye-rolly moments. It did pick up action wise, towards the end of the book, but for a book with less than 200 pages, this took me way too long to finish. Some happenings at the very end of the book was very unnecessary in my opinion, and to end the book with that as one of the last things on my mind, ugh.

I enjoyed the fact that Bond Team had some diversity with one African American and one Chinese American in their ranks. Several of them were also from different social statuses. I also enjoyed meeting the different members and seeing how they were selected. The very first parts of the book were probably my favorites to be honest.

I will be reading on to the next one eventually, as there was some foreshadowing to something that I think will be interesting to see unfold.


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Saturday, October 15, 2016

#Book1CoziesClub: November Books of the Month


This is the announcement video for the First in a Series Cozy Mystery Book Club November Selections. Links for all books can be found after the break.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on Inferno (Robert Langdon #4)

Inferno: A Novel Unabridged EditionInferno: A Novel Unabridged Edition by Dan Brown

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


I thought this was a very interesting story with a relevant topic at its core. This was much more thrilling than The Lost Symbol for me and my mind kept returning to the story at hand whenever I wasn't reading/listening to it. It is a bit scary to think about the possibility of the story happening in real life. I really hope the movie does this book justice, and I can't wait to see this story come to life.

Looking forward to seeing what the next story in this series holds, though the title is already turning wheels in my head. I have not read any of the author's books outside of this series, but since there's a little less than a year to wait for the next installment, that definitely gives me some time to do so.

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Thursday, October 13, 2016

Manga: September Wrap Up Part 2



This contains my thoughts on the manga that I read in September. Links to series or people mentioned as follows:

Laura's Channel Manga Hoarder 

Blood+ by Asuka Katsura

Hell Girl by Miyuki Eto

Red River by Chie Shinohara

Monday, October 10, 2016

Books: September Wrap Up Part 1 - Novels


This video contains my thoughts on all the novels I read in September. For my thoughts on the manga I read in September, keep an eye out for Part 2 of my Wrap Up. Goodreads links to all books mentioned can be found after the break:

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on A Tisket, A Tasket, A Fancy Stolen Casket (Callie Parrish #1)

A Tisket, A Tasket, A Fancy Stolen Casket (A Callie Parrish Mystery #1)A Tisket, A Tasket, A Fancy Stolen Casket by Fran Rizer

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

More like a 3.5
Read as part of #Book1CoziesClub

Synopsis (from Goodreads):  Mortuary cosmetologist Calamine Parrish stares death in the face every day. But when she finds a hypodermic needle in the neck of an "accidental" drowning victim, and the victim's fancy casket is stolen, Callie finds herself in over her head-and in the way of a killer.

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I really enjoyed the look into Callie's job. It was the fact that she was a Mortuary Cosmetologist that made me buy this book in the first place. This did not disappoint and those scenes were some of the most interesting in this book for me. I also enjoyed her relationship with her family, and her relationship with her blind friend Jane. I thought their friendship was very realistic, especially in the aftermath of an argument or disagreement. I also enjoyed the fact that Callie loves mystery books!

A couple things I didn't enjoy were the nicknames several of the characters had. It seemed so immature and unnecessary. I also wish Callie was less obsessed with the size of her chest. She mentions something to that regard quite a bit throughout the book and her comments irritated me after a while. I also question her taste in men a bit.

The pieces to the mystery kind of fell into Callie's lap, without her even doing anything. Not something I expected, as I thought she'd definitely be more inquisitive and take action. It was a nice change from other cozies I've read. I had no clue who the culprit was until the reveal, which is always a plus.

I do have the next book in the series, so I will be continuing. All in all, this was an enjoyable read, and I'm glad I finally got to it.


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Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland and Led the Revels There (Fairyland #2)

The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland and Led the Revels There (Fairyland, #2)The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland and Led the Revels There by Catherynne M. Valente

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Ok, I originally said 3.5, but on reflection probably 3.75 instead.

I definitely enjoyed the story more in this book than the first. Also, the issues I had with the difficult vocabulary words were not present in this installment. As with the first though, it took me a really long time to finish this book. It just didn't pull me in until closer to the end. That being said, I was engaged sooner in this story than I was in the first book, even though it was still pretty close to the end.

This book also provided another interesting nugget of info at the end, which really makes me want to continue with the series. Seeing as this has been a slightly more enjoyable read and experience than the first, I have hopes that each installment will just get better and better for me.

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Friday, September 23, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on The Lost Symbol (Robert Langdon #3)

The Lost Symbol (Robert Langdon, #3)The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

More like a 3.5

Though this book took me quite a while to get through, I did enjoy it quite a bit. I listened to almost the entire thing on audiobook and though the narrator was just ok, the story kept me wanting to know what happened next. It even escaped my mind that the story took place over the span of several hours and not days.

There were definitely things I could've done with less of, like the several points where our villian's physique is described. I seriously didn't need to know about it to the extent that the description was given. The way Sato handled situations got under my skin a bit, too. That being said, I did find it interesting learning about the topics this story explored and I will be moving to the next one shortly.

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Thursday, September 15, 2016

#Book1CoziesClub: October Books of the Month



This is the announcement video for the First in a Series Cozy Mystery Book Club October Selections. Links for both books can be found after the break.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on Escape from Witchwood Hollow

Escape from Witchwood HollowEscape from Witchwood Hollow by Jordan Elizabeth Mierek

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I was approached by one of the members of the author's street team to possibly read and review this book. Upon reading the synopsis, it sounded like it would be right down my alley so I happily agreed. Thank you to the author for providing me a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.

Synopsis (from Goodreads): Everyone in Arnn - a small farming town with more legends than residents - knows the story of Witchwood Hollow: if you venture into the whispering forest, the witch will trap your soul among the shadowed trees.

After losing her parents in a horrific terrorist attack on the Twin Towers, fifteen-year-old Honoria and her older brother escape New York City to Arnn. In the lure of that perpetual darkness, Honoria finds hope, when she should be afraid.

Perhaps the witch can reunite her with her lost parents. Awakening the witch, however, brings more than salvation from mourning, for Honoria discovers a past of missing children and broken promises.

To save the citizens of Arnn from becoming the witch’s next victims, she must find the truth behind the woman’s madness.

How deep into Witchwood Hollow does Honoria dare venture?

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The story is told in three different time periods: 1670, 1850, and 2001. Not something I was aware of going in. Jumping between time periods or multiple perspectives is something that throws me off a bit if I'm not careful, but I didn't seem to have too much of a problem with it in this book. Once I realized this though, I definitely started to form a theory about the storylines. That theory turned out to be right, but there were still nuggets presented that I was surprised and entertained by.

My favorite parts were the ones that occurred in the story taking place in 2001. Those sections were the ones that really drew me in and kept me captivated from the start. It wasn't until roughly halfway through, that I started to become enthralled with the story as a whole. That is also about when things started clicking together for me.

I was a little irritated with Honoria in the way that she only seemed interested in the prospect of a boyfriend at one point of the story. Some of the things she thought to herself really got under my skin. I was also a little disappointed with the way she handles some drama in the latter part of the story.

The end of this story was definitely a let down for me and it's what is preventing me from giving this book a higher rating. It was not something that I expected for sure, though I do feel it is a feasible end. If it had gone in a different direction though, I feel that the story would've been more satisfying for me as a whole. That being said, I would still check out another of this author's work in the future as I did think this was an enjoyable read.

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Monday, September 5, 2016

Books: August Reading Challenges Wrap Up

Here's my monthly update post of how I'm doing with my Reading Challenges to date.


#RockMyTBR - For this challenge, I set a goal for myself to read at least one book off my physical TBR every month. In addition to this list, I want to read one book from Kindle Unlimited to make sure I'm making use of that service. The books I read for this challenge are as follows:

  • The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (Fairyland #1) by Catherynne M. Valente (buddy read with Raul from Latin Lector)
  • The School for Good and Evil (The School for Good and Evil #1) by Soman Chainani
As you can see, I again did not meet the challenge of reading a book from Kindle Unlimited....  (๑◕︵◕๑)

#FinishingtheSeries - For this challenge, I set a goal for myself to complete or become current on 3-6 series during the year. I am not counting series I start and finish in 2016 until I finish the initial 6. These are the books I read towards this challenge in August:
  • Fairy Tail Volumes 31 & 32 by Hiro Mashima
  • A Toxic Trousseau (Witchcraft Mysteries #8) by Juliet Blackwell - this is my 6th completed/up to date series for the year. With this, I have met my challenge goal, yeah!
I've done really good on this particular challenge this year. At the end of August, I have read 45 novels. This leaves me with 7 novels to read to reach my goal of 52 by the end of the year, which I am feeling super positive about meeting. I will be adjusting my Goodreads challenge to reflect these additional novels, as I have been for the last few months.


Let me know how you've been doing with your reading challenges. I hope you are all doing great!

Until Next Time, Take Care & Smi-Le Always

    ^
(   "   )
/___\     Di



Sunday, September 4, 2016

Manga: August Wrap Up Part 2


This second part of my wrap up includes all of the manga I read in August. Links to all series mentioned can be found after the break.

Books: August Wrap Up Part 1


I think I'm finally out of my reading slump! I was able to read 16 things in August. This video covers only the novels that were read. Part 2 will contain the manga that I read. Keep a look out for that video, coming soon!

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on Homicide in Hardcover (Bibliophile Mysteries #1)

Homicide in Hardcover (Bibliophile Mystery #1)Homicide in Hardcover by Kate Carlisle

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Synopsis (from Goodreads): The streets of San Francisco would be lined with hardcovers if rare book expert Brooklyn Wainwright had her way. And her mentor wouldn't be lying in a pool of his own blood on the eve of a celebration for his latest book restoration.

With his final breath he leaves Brooklyn a cryptic message, and gives her a priceless and supposedly cursed copy of Goethe's Faust for safekeeping.

Brooklyn suddenly finds herself accused of murder and theft, thanks to the humorless, but attractive, British security officer who finds her kneeling over the body. Now she has to read the clues left behind by her mentor if she is going to restore justice….


☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆ ☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆

I really enjoyed this one. The tidbits about the books restoration were very interesting and the main character has a background that was new to my reading experiences. I didn't know the culprit until the reveal. This installment also comes equipped with a villainous nemesis for our main character, who I particularly despise. I'm interested to see what becomes of that character as the series continues.

Read as part of the First in a Series Cozy Mystery Book Club #Book1CoziesClub

View all my reviews

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on The School of Good and Evil

The School for Good and Evil (The School for Good and Evil, #1)The School for Good and Evil by Soman Chainani

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

What a great book! I loved how the themes of good and evil were explored throughout the story. I started out listening to this on audiobook and did not realize that the physical copy had some amazing illustrations! Definitely keep that in mind if you decide to pick this one up. I can't really say anything more because the other things I loved about this story would be spoilery for someone who hasn't read it! Just know that this was highly enjoyable for me and I definitely recommend it.

View all my reviews

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on It Takes A Witch (Wishcraft Mystery #1)

It Takes a Witch (A Wishcraft Mystery, #1)It Takes a Witch by Heather Blake

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Synopsis (from Goodreads): Darcy Merriweather and her sister, Harper, hail from a long line of witches who have the power to grant wishes using spells. They've come to Enchanted Village in Salem, Massachusetts, to join the family business, but they soon find themselves knee deep in murder...

Until three weeks ago, Darcy and Harper were working dead-end jobs and trying to put their troubles behind them. Then their aunt Velma delivered a bombshell: They're actually Wishcrafters - witches with the power to grant wishes with a mere spell. Wanting a fresh start, they head to their aunt's magic-themed tourist town to master their newfound skills.

But their magic fails them when a wannabe witch turns up dead - strangled with Aunt Ve's scarf - and Ve's sweetheart, Sylar, is found looming over the body. Ve is standing by her man, but Darcy overheard Skylar wish that the victim would disappear - forever. With Harper distracted by her handsome new crush, Darcy is determined to sleuth her way to the truth. But it'll take more than a wish to unravel this mystery....


 ☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆ ☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆.。.:*・°☆

This was one of the #Book1CoziesClub picks for the month and I really enjoyed it! First off, I loved their last name, even though some may find it eye-rolly (Merryweather was my favorite of the fairies in Disney's Sleeping Beauty growing up). I enjoyed the fact that as Darcy was learning things about her powers and the community, I was learning along side her. Trying to unravel the mystery kept me intrigued and I did not know who the culprit was until it was revealed. There are definitely signs of a romance brewing and I really want to see where that goes. The mystery tied up nicely and the book left on a very interesting tidbit. I definitely will be continuing with this series.


View all my reviews

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Books: July Reading Challenges Wrap Up

This update is super late this month, but I'm finally going to update you on how I did with my reading challenges in July.


#RockMyTBR - For this challenge, I set a goal for myself to read at least one book off my physical TBR every month. In addition to this list, I want to read one book from Kindle Unlimited to make sure I'm making use of that service. I did end up cancelling my Scribd membership. After a couple months of paused membership with them, I unfortunately did not miss having access to their offerings. The books I read for this challenge are as follows:
  • The Last Battle (Chronicles of Narnia #7) by C.S. Lewis - Buddy read with Lee at Totallee.net
  • Better Read Than Dead (Abby Cooper, Psychic Eye #2) by Victoria Laurie
  • Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery
As you can see, I did not accomplish reading a book from Kindle Unlimited in July, so I really need to make sure I fulfill that challenge in August.

#FinishingtheSeries - For this challenge, I set a goal for myself to complete or become current on 3-6 series during the year. I am not counting series I start and finish in 2016 until I finish the initial 6. These are the books I read towards this challenge in July:

  • The Last Battle (Chronicles of Narnia #7) by C.S. Lewis
  • Better Read Than Dead (Abby Cooper, Psychic Eye #2) by Victoria Laurie
  • Fairy Tail Volumes 29 & 30 by Hiro Mashima
  • Blue Exorcist Volumes 3 & 4 by Kazue Kato
  • Red River Volumes 10-12 by Chie Shinohara
As you can see, I did complete a series this month, but I am not counting it towards my goal, as it is one that I both started and completed in 2016. That being said, I am still doing well with this challenge and as of the date of this post, I have already completed the challenge. You will see what my sixth completed/up to date series is next month ^_-

By the end of July, I have read 40 novels among the mountains of manga I've consumed this year. This leaves me with 12 novels to read to reach my goal of 52 by the end of the year, which shouldn't be a problem at all. I will be adjusting my Goodreads challenge to reflect these additional novels, as I have been for the last couple months.

Let me know how you've been doing with your reading challenges! I hope you are all doing great!

Until Next Time, Take Care & Smi-Le Always

    ^
(   "   )
/___\     Di

Monday, August 15, 2016

#Book1CoziesClub: September Books of the Month



The books for September have been chosen! They are:

Murder in Volume (Megan Clark Mysteries) by D.R. Meredith - as recommended by Elizabeth from LizzyfayeLovesBooks
These books no longer seem to be in print, so links above are to purchase ebook copies only. If you would like a physical copy, I have seen used copies for sale or check to see if it's available at your library! 

Discussion threads for these two books will be up in the Mystery Madness Goodreads Group around September 1.

Whether you decide to read one book or both, I do hope you join us for these reads for September.


Thursday, August 11, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on A Toxic Trousseau (Witchcraft Mystery #8)

A Toxic Trousseau A Toxic Trousseau by Juliet Blackwell
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Another highly enjoyable book in this series! This one didn't have as much of the supernatural element that I really enjoy, the story still kept me engaged. I especially liked the scenes during Bronwyn's birthday party and that we got a glimpse into some of the things Aidan does in the community. A couple underlying story lines progressed also and the last few pages left me really curious about the next installment.

I listened to a little bit of this on audiobook. This was the first time that I had done that with one of the books in this series and though I did enjoy the narrator, reading the physical copy allowed me to consume the story faster. As always, can't wait for the next installment!

View all my reviews

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Books: July Wrap Up



I've been feeling a bit slumpy but I still managed to read 4 novels and 7 volumes of manga in July. I also participated in the #SaveOurCozies 24 Readathon and failed miserably at the #BookTubeaThon.

Books mentioned:
Channels mentioned:
My #SaveOurCozies Vlog

The First in a Series Cozy Mystery Book Club Announcement and August Books Video

Mystery Madness Goodreads Group

Find me on the following sites (ノ^ヮ^)ノ*:・゚✧
Twitter 
Goodreads
Reader’s Legacy
Books Amino

The blanket shown in the opener was crocheted by me and the blanket in the closer was hand knit by me.

Monday, August 1, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on The Wicked Will Rise (Dorothy Must Die #2)

The Wicked Will Rise (Dorothy Must Die, #2)The Wicked Will Rise by Danielle Paige

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

More like a 3.5

I enjoyed this book but not as much as the first one. The beginning kept up the pace from the previous book, but then I thought it slowed down quite a bit. It picked up again towards the end only to leave me with another cliffhanger ending. I do have the next one but am concerned that it will also have me dwell in my curiosity with a cliffhanger ending again, as I don't believe it's the last book of the series (or so I think I heard).

I have been listening on audio as well as reading a physical copy and do enjoy the narrator. As much as I don't think this was as good as the first, this book did have my interest and I am still wanting to see how this all turns out.

View all my reviews

Friday, July 29, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on Anne of Green Gables

Anne of Green GablesAnne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I enjoyed this every bit as much as I thought I would. It is shameful how long it took me to finally pick it up and I really have no excuse except to say that I was afraid that I'd be disappointed due to my high expectations. Thankfully those expectations were fulfilled marvelously. This book made me laugh, pulled at my heart and left me wanting to stay in Avonlea. My copy even has a recipe for Raspberry Cordial in the back, which I will definitely be trying out!

View all my reviews

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

#Book1CoziesClub: Announcement & Books for August



Inspired by the #SaveOurCozies Readathon, please join me in reading the first book in several cozy mystery series! Link to my original post about this idea is here. Links to purchase the books for August and to Goodreads can be found below:

Monday, July 18, 2016

Books: #SaveOurCozies 24 Hour Readathon Vlog



I participated in the #SaveOurCozies Readathon on July 16. I was happy to be a part of this to bring attention to the genre and help out our favorite cozy mystery authors. If you would like more information about what this readathon was all about, please see the readathon website here: https://saveourcoziesreadathon.wordpress.com/about/

The book I read was Better Read Than Dead (Abby Cooper, Psychic Eye Mystery #2) by Victoria Laurie. Goodreads link here:

Find me on the following sites (ノ^ヮ^)ノ*:・゚✧
Twitter
Goodreads
Reader’s Legacy
Books Amino 

Blanket shown in closer was hand knit by me.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on Better Read Than Dead (Abby Cooper, Psychic Eye Mystery #2)

Better Read Than Dead (Psychic Eye Mystery, #2)Better Read Than Dead by Victoria Laurie

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Read for the #saveourcozies Readathon. Didn't think I would be able to finish this in less than 24 hours, but I did! I really enjoyed this one, and it was very easy to read. I like how Abby's team chimes in whenever she's lying or when others are lying to Abby. I also like how we experience the feel of a yes or no response based on the description of the feeling. I'm really looking forward to getting to the next book during the #booktubeathon



View all my reviews

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Books: BookTubeaThon TBR

Hi everyone! I wanted to let you know that I will be participating in the BookTubeaThon next week. I don't have time to film and edit a video at the moment, so I decided to put together a blog post instead. BookTubeaThon will run from July 18-24 and it was the very first readathon I participated in after starting to watch BookTube. I'm pretty excited! Anyway, let's get into the details.

There are seven challenges for the readathon that you can endeavor to accomplish. I will list them and what I will be planning to read for each challenge after the break.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on The Darkest Part of the Forest

The Darkest Part of the ForestThe Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


I really enjoyed this book! It made me remember how much I enjoy stories that have Fae in them and that I should really get back to reading more stories that include them. I did read this in conjunction with it's audiobook and though I enjoyed the narration, I ended up reading the physical copy more because I enjoyed the story that much that I just had to find out what happened next.

There is a bit of parental neglect that was glossed over. I'm not sure that it was even necessary to state it directly in the story (especially because it was described towards the end of the book), as it did seem pretty obvious to me that's how those parents were. Though this definitely wasn't dealt with, there's a part of me that thinks the story couldn't have happened if the parents weren't the way they were. I did appreciate that we find out right off the bat that Ben is gay. The author didn't try to hide it, it's just part of who he is and that's that.

I do believe this is the first book I've read by Holly Black, though I know I have several of her books on my TBR. I really enjoyed her writing as it was very easy to read and the story pulled me in rather quickly. Looking forward to reading more of her books in the future.



View all my reviews

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Books: June Reading Challenges Wrap Up

It is time again to let you know how I'm doing with the reading challenges I set for myself at the beginning of the year.


#RockMyTBR - For this challenge, I set a goal for myself to read at least one book off my physical TBR every month. In addition to this list, I want to read one book from Scribd or Kindle Unlimited to make sure I'm making use of those services. Since I paused my Scribd membership for the moment, this meant I had to read something off Kindle Unlimited in June. The books I read for this challenge are as follows:
  • The Silver Chair (Chronicles of Narnia #6) by C.S. Lewis
  • Broken Wings (Hidden Wings #2) by Cameo Renae - read from Kindle Unlimited


#FinishingtheSeries - For this challenge, I set a goal for myself to complete or become current on 3-6 series during the year. I am not counting series I start and finish in 2016 until I finish the initial 6. These are the books I read towards this challenge in June:

  • Fairy Tail Volumes 27 & 28 by Hiro Mashima
So my total completed series for this challenge is still 5, not including any other series I have completed or become current on that I started in 2016. In addition to the above two challenges, I want to strive to read 52 novels in addition to the large amount of manga I've read this year in my Goodreads Reading Challenge. I read 4 novels in June, so that brings my total number of novels read to 36. This means that I still have 16 novels to read before the year is done so I will again be adjusting my Goodreads Reading Challenge to reflect these. I think that's a totally manageable number!

Let me know how you're doing on your challenges! I hope you are all doing great.

Until Next Time, Take Care & Smi-Le Always,

    ^
(   "   )
/___\     Di

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Books: First in a Series Cozy Mystery Book Club


In light of the #SaveOurCozies Readathon that's coming up, I've been seeing a ton of cozy mystery series and authors that I am not familiar with. It's been making me want to try them all! I have several series already on my shelves that I haven't started (a few of them are pictured above), and I have a ton that I've added to my To Read list just from joining the Save Our Cozies Readathon. I will be making a conscious effort to read at least one first book in a series every month and which will help me get acquainted with more cozy mystery series and their authors.

I thought that maybe I wasn't the only one who was interested in trying out more cozy mystery series, so I thought I'd start this book club in case others might want to join me. My thought is that we'd read one book each month and at the end of the month (or whenever you finish the book) you can link up your review via hashtag on your favorite social media site, or we could do a group on Goodreads. I'm pretty sure there isn't a book club out there like this focusing on first books in cozy mystery series, but let me know if there is!

I don't think I'll start until August, which would give anyone joining in a chance to discuss what series we'd like to start and give us ample time to pick up the book if we don't already own it, or I can just choose one at random. If you are interested in joining me, please let me know! You can leave me a comment below or send me a message on any of my social media sites.

I hope you are all doing great!

Until Next Time, Take Care and Smi-Le Always

    ^
(   "   )
/___\     Di

Monday, July 4, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on The Last Battle (Chronicles of Narnia #7)

The Last Battle (Chronicles of Narnia, #7)The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis

My rating: 3 of 5 stars


I can finally say that I've read this series. I do wish that I read it when I was younger as this series wasn't as enjoyable as I thought it would be for me, reading it as an adult. The twist at the end of this book didn't surprise me too much and I was disappointed to find out about how another character had grown up. I was happy to see past characters towards the end of this book, but that didn't push this book from a like to a love for me.

The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe will always be my favorite of this series, but I was happy to find The Horse and His Boy, as it is a second favorite of this series. I think overall, I'd give this series three stars and would still recommend people read it if they haven't.


View all my reviews

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Books: June Wrap Up



I was going through a bit of reading slump in June, but surprisingly I was still able to finish about four novels. Not too shabby, if I do say so myself. Links to the books mentioned can be found after the break.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on Broken Wings (Hidden Wings #2)

Broken Wings Broken Wings by Cameo Renae
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This installment had more religious aspects to the story which was interesting to me. Emma's infatuation with Kade is a bit ridiculous in my opinion. I'm sorry but when you're in a life and death situation, I don't think that's the time to be remarking to yourself at how good looking someone is! Thankfully this didn't continue on through the entire book.

This definitely had more action and suspenseful situations. Love, loss, and the unexpected I believe is what is written in the summary, and that is exactly what I feel was delivered in this installment. The book really got good in the last half and I would've read the rest in one sitting if I didn't have to go to work. Looking forward seeing how this story continues as a twist was introduced towards the end of this one.

View all my reviews

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Crochet: Naruto and Sasuke


Ive been working on this crochet project for over a year (I'm ashamed to say), but it's finally finished! My daughter is a fan of the anime, so this panel belongs to her now. My mom is going to back it with some fabric so my daughter can use it as a lap blanket.

This was supposed to be part of the #totalleeCAL2015 but I am glad that it's finally completed. If you are interested in trying to crochet a panel like this, I highly recommend that you head over to my friend Lee's blog totallee.net. She has several free patterns available and she is working on a brand new one as I type this.

Until Next Time, Take Care & Smi-Le Always!

    ^
(   "   )
/___\     Di

Monday, June 27, 2016

Books: #SaveOurCozies 24 Hour Read-a-thon



You may not know this, but I am a big fan of cozy mysteries. There's a read-a-thon happening on Saturday, July 16 called the #SaveOurCozies Read-a-thon. It's a 24 hour read-a-thon where we will be focusing all our reading efforts on cozy mysteries, supporting authors of cozy mysteries, and raising awareness of the genre as several series have been cancelled or are in danger of being cancelled by publishers.

I am not creating a TBR for the read-a-thon because I want to be able to pick up what I want, when I want. I may get caught up in a series and want to marathon that series all day, and I want to be able to give myself the flexibility to do so. Also, I haven't participated in a 24 hour read-a-thon before, so I'm not sure how I'm going to feel with my reading time being so concentrated. I have a ton of options available to me in my personal library, so I'm just going to have fun with it.

If you would like to see what I'm reading throughout the day, make sure you follow me on Twitter! I will be out and about on that day, but will post status updates as much as I can. If you'd like to join me, you can sign up here on the Save Our Cozies Readathon Blog, or there's a Goodreads group here. Also, if you have a favorite cozy mystery series, let me know what it is!

Until Next Time, Take Care and Smi-Le Always!

    ^
(   "   )
/___\     Di

Image credit to the Save Our Cozies Readathon Blog

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on The Green Mile

The Green MileThe Green Mile by Stephen King

My rating: 2 of 5 stars


This one just wasn't for me. I guessed how it would end during the second part, skipped to part 6 and then read to the end. I wasn't interested in how the story got to where it ended, and I was right in my guess as to what was going to happen to John Coffey.

The last part told me enough that I don't feel the need or have the interest to read the three parts that I skipped over. I definitely won't be watching the movie, but I am still interested in reading more of the author's work.



View all my reviews

Friday, June 24, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on Dorothy Must Die

Dorothy Must Die (Dorothy Must Die, #1)Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


I am not a big fan of the Wizard of Oz movie and I have not read the books, but I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this book! I have been in quite the reading slump lately and none of the books I was reading were keeping my interest. I saw that Barnes and Noble had this book as their free serial read for the month, so I figured that I would check out the first few chapters and see how I felt about it. I was hooked!

This story brings back all the characters I am acquainted with, so it wasn't hard to immerse myself in the world. The twist to the story kept me intrigued and guessing who to trust. The author's writing style was very easy to read and I thought the story flowed well. I've already requested the next two books in the series from my library and I can't wait to see what happens next!

If you are interested, you can read this book for free until June 30 through the Nook app under B&N Readouts.


View all my reviews

Monday, June 13, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on The Silver Chair (Chronicles of Narnia #6)

The Silver Chair (Chronicles of Narnia, #6)The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis

My rating: 3 of 5 stars


I had the same experience with this book as I've had with most of the previous ones. I liked the story, but that's about it. There were definitely things I picked up on before the characters did and that led to some moments of frustration for me. I am still glad that I did finally get around to reading this series. One more book to go and I'm wondering how this will all end.

Reading the series in chronological order with Lee from Totallee.net

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Thursday, June 9, 2016

Books: May 2016 Wrap Up including #BookBuddyaThon



I had some pretty exciting things happening in my life in May, but I also read some great books with some great friends and participated in a read-a-thon!

Goodreads links to books mentioned can be found after the break:

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Books: May Reading Challenges Wrap Up

I'm back with another update on how I'm doing on the reading challenges I set for myself at the beginning of the year!


#RockMyTBR - For this challenge, I set a goal for myself to read at least one book off my physical TBR every month. In addition to this list, I want to read one book from Scribd or Kindle Unlimited to make sure I'm making use of those services.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Books: Book Outlet/Manga Monday Haul | May 2016



My very first Book Outlet and Manga Monday Haul! Just so you know, I did order these a few weeks ago, so the books shown from Book Outlet may not still be available.

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

KDrama: My Thoughts on Thumping Spike (두근두근스파이크)


Starring Song Jae Rim and Hwang Seung Eon
20 Episodes
Sohu TV, 2016
Sports/Romance Comedy
✰✰✰✰

I have been obsessed with watching Cool Kiz on the Block tackle Volleyball. When I found out there was a drama involving the sport, I had to check it out! Ended up marathoning the entire series on DramaFever in one day. 

Synopsis from DramaFever: Despite always coming in last, the Daehan High School Volleyball team aspires to reach the top. After a misunderstanding with the team captain, volleyball goddess Se Ra (Hwang Seung Eon), is stuck coaching this floundering team in order to dodge a potential lawsuit — however things aren't any easier when Daehan's star player, Jae Woong (Song Jae Rim) and Se Ra are constantly butting heads. Full of love for the sport — and increasingly, love for Se Ra — can the team turn around their game?

Part sport, part comedy, and part Noona romance, this was a very entertaining way to spend my afternoon. There were several familiar faces and several new ones to me as well. If you enjoyed Flower Boy Ramyun Shop or have been watching the Cool Kiz Volleyball tournaments recently, I think you will enjoy this web drama. 

Don't let the number of episodes fool you. Each episode comes in under 20 minutes, which is perfect if you're looking for a quick fix. I just found out there will be a second season with a new cast, so I'm looking forward to that.

If you've seen this drama, let me know what you thought! I hope you are all doing great.

Until Next Time, Take Care & Smi-Le Always!

    ^
(   "   )
/___\     Di

Image Credit to DramaFever

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Manga: Recent Reads #2


Nineteen more volumes of manga read since my last Recent Reads video! Links to the first volume of each series mentioned can be found after the break:

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on Marked in Flesh (The Others #4)

Marked in Flesh (The Others, #4)Marked in Flesh by Anne Bishop

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Another great installment in this series! This world always sucks me in right from the start and keeps making me want to know what's gonna happen next. The slow burn romance is still going, but again we take a tentative step forward. Can't wait to see what's in store for our friends in the next installment.

Read towards my #finishingtheseries challenge as the fifth series I've completed (in this case, am current on) this year.

View all my reviews

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Anime: My Thoughts on Prince of Stride: Alternative


12 Episodes
Sports, Comedy, Slice of Life
Watched on Funimation
★★★★★

Stride is a sport where two teams of five runners compete against each other, relay style, in a town environment. There are obstacles along the way where runners can perform stunts for flare and audience entertainment, but they are optional and no points are awarded for performing the stunts. The runners wear ear pieces that link all the runners to each other and their Relationer, who observes the race from a tablet and is able to tell the runners how far ahead they are or how behind they are. The Relationer's job is also to tell each runner when to start their leg of the race.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on The Death Cure (Maze Runner #3)

The Death Cure The Death Cure by James Dashner
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I've sat on my review a couple days as I'm not sure what to say about this book. I did already know a spoiler going into this so I was expecting that, but I was also expecting to dislike this book as a whole, which I didn't. I did end up liking it, but I didn't love it.

There were some surprises for sure and by this point I'm already accustomed to the slang, so that didn't bother me as much as it had before. I really enjoyed the throwback to the first book. I feel like that really brought everything together nicely, but I didn't feel like everything these characters had gone through was worth what the final result ended up being. I was sitting next to my mom (who already read the book) when I finished, closed the book, looked at her and said REALLY?!? And she just smiled and nodded. UGH.

I have been watching the movies and since the second movie veered so far off course, I do wonder how this last one will turn out on screen. I have been enjoying the movies, probably more than these books, so I'm looking forward to seeing the adaptation when it comes out. As far as this series goes, I think I'm done for now. I have no interest in reading the prequel novellas right now, but that's not to say that I will never read them. I think I just need some distance for the time being.

Read as part of the #bookbuddyathon to complete the challenges of reading a book with your buddy's favorite color on the cover and the Pick 3 challenge. This also counts towards my #finishingtheseries challenge as my fourth finished series of the year.

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Thursday, May 12, 2016

Books: My Thoughts on Fire & Ash (Benny Imura #4)

Fire & Ash (Rot & Ruin, #4)Fire & Ash by Jonathan Maberry

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


What a great end to what has been an amazing series. I am not one for books or shows about zombies, but this series offers so much more than a story filled with gore. It's a story about family, a story about how far you'd go to save the ones you'd love, and a story about true friendship.

The series offered a pretty diverse set of characters and the last two installments of this series explored a religious aspect, which I found interesting and believable. The series comes full circle here and all the ends were tied up nicely. I highly recommend this series and look forward to reading the author's Joe Ledger series soon.

Read as part of the #bookbuddyathon and completed two challenges - read a book with your buddy and read a book that you really want to read. This also counts towards my #finishingtheseries challenge as my third finished series of the year.

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