Thursday, 23 May 2019

Let's Talk About Reading in Public

Alright, folks. So with the weather warming up, I am determined to spend more time outside the house this summer. However, I also want to read more this summer. I guess that means I will be reading more outside my house!



I do have some ideas and concerns about this, though. I want to talk a bit about them, and get your thoughts.



So first, I want to talk about the benefits of reading outside the house!



Exercise. You have to walk, or jog, to where you're going to be reading. This is great because there is a library near my house where I want to spend more time, so I get to be surrounded by books and get some exercise!



Sunlight and fresh air. Reading outside the house can include reading in parks, cemeteries, or at the beach. As a result, this can increase the amount of sunlight and fresh air you get, which is also great.



Bench behind abandoned house

Image found here


Discovering other books. If you decide to go sit at the library to read, you can also browse for more books to read later on!


An excuse to get ice cream. Hey, I'm outside and sweating in the sun, might as well get some ice cream to cool down!


I do have some concerns about reading in public, though!


First off, comfort. I like to sit cross-legged, or stretch my legs on the couch when I read. I can't exactly do that on the park bench. I have to be more careful about taking up space.


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 I would not read this in public.


The books themselves. The subject matter of a book can be an issue when reading in public. There is the issue of the cover of a book, of course. Many romantic books have very steamy cover scenes, and personally I would not be comfortable reading them in public. Sometimes book titles can be a little raunchy as well! Maybe I am being paranoid here, but I also would avoid reading books such as Pet Sematary or The Smart Aleck's Guide to Grave Robbing in the cemetery.


The sun/heat. Of course, while getting more sun and fresh air is great, if it is too hot or sunny outside, you might find yourself regretting settling outside for a read.


People. People might come up to you and ask to talk about what you are reading. This is an issue for me because I am introverted and socially awkward.


What are your thoughts on reading in public? Do you agree with my pros/cons? Are there any other benefits or concerns you have that I have missed?


Happy Reading!


Wednesday, 8 May 2019

The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware


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Series: N/A
Author: Ruth Ware
Page Count: 340
Published: July 19th, 2016
Publisher: Gallery/Scout Press
  5 Stars ★★★★★



Lo Blacklock's had a rough few days. She's still shaken up from someone breaking and entering into her house when she is assigned to report on a new luxury cruise ship. Packing up her things, she heads over to board the Aurora, meeting with the small group of people she will be travelling with. All seems well.


That is, until she hears commotion coming from the cabin next to her one night. Alarmed, she reports to the Aurora's staff, who claim that the cabin next to her is empty. But this can't be true....Lo had previously borrowed mascara from the woman in cabin 10. It becomes clear that somebody is trying to hide a secret, and this secret may prove deadly for Lo.


So I've recently found myself drawn to mystery books, and this one seemed intriguing and frankly, frightening. Imagine being stuck on a cruise ship with a possible murderer! This book unsettled me quite a bit, and the character of Lo Blacklock was a perfect narrator for this story.


I pretty much liked Lo immediately, and the connection with her started when she experienced the break and enter. The author doesn't hesitate to commence the tension and stress, which made me want to keep reading because, despite the main plot not really starting until a short while after the beginning of the book, her experiences demanded my empathy and attention. This was a great set-up for the terrifying mystery to come! This was great because as the story progressed, I have to admit that I second-guessed Lo's sanity and wondered if maybe she had imagined the commotion from cabin 10. Even if I thought she could possibly be overreacting, I still really rooted for her.


There were some great twists and turns in this mystery. I honestly did not see them coming! This tends to be an issue for me because the genres that I usually read, mainly young adult books, have become somewhat predictable for me, so it's nice to take a break from that and truly be baffled and consumed by a mystery! For this reason I'd recommend this book to those looking for novels that offer something different than they're used to reading, especially if you're looking for something unpredictable.


Overall I really loved this book and I will be reading more of this author's work in the future!


Find The Woman in Cabin 10 on Goodreads

Sunday, 21 April 2019

Summer Plans

I know it is technically not summer yet, but the school year has ended so for me, this is the start of "summer"!


I want to talk about summer plans. First off, I am planning on blogging regularly again. Finally, I can relax (if my stressed out brain lets me!), so I can read more and concentrate on my blog :)


I am also planning on walking down to the library a lot. I live fairly close to it, so it is an incentive for exercise, plus many books I want to read! It's nice for when I want to get out of the house and not spend money.


I am thinking of making a summer TBR list. I have some books I definitely want to get to this summer, generally thicker books I don't have the time to really get into during the school year. Among these books are my copy of The 120 Days of Sodom and Other Writings (which has been.....an experience so far), Lady Midnight and Lord of Shadows (the second of which I received for Christmas!), A Court of Mist and Fury, and the soon-to-be-released Bedlam!


Lord of Shadows (The Dark Artifices, #2)



However, I don't want to put too many books on this list, as I also need to make sure that I have enough time to read library books as well (I never have time to visit the library during the school year). Do you make a summer TBR list? Is it definitive, or do you just choose a few select books that you make sure to sprinkle throughout your summer reading?


I am also hoping to get some planning and maybe even part of a draft done for the story I am working on. I really worked on world-building throughout the year, so maybe I can get things going on this project.



I don't really have any other summer plans, besides working. No traveling, no major get-togethers, just a nice, chill summer.



Just some important reminders: make sure to drink lots of water this summer! Don't forget to wear sunscreen, and try to have fun!


Do you have any summer plans?

Tuesday, 12 March 2019

Beautiful Book Covers

Today I want to talk about some more beautiful book covers! I am featuring a trilogy with covers I love!



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 An Echo of Things to Come (The Licanius Trilogy, #2)


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I love these covers for a lot of reasons. I think they're just so pleasing to the eye, but what I really love about them is the colour scheme. I love the mostly grey scale colours with a big pop of orange, blue, or red. It makes them stick out from other books to me, and it is simple enough, but not boring. It is interesting, but not overwhelming either.


What do you think of these covers?

Sunday, 10 February 2019

The Blood Keeper by Tessa Gratton + Vamps by Nancy A. Collins

The Blood Keeper (The Blood Journals, #2)


Series: The Blood Journals
Author: Tessa Gratton
Page Count: 432
Published: August 28th, 2012
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers
  3 Stars ★★★

Mab is the new Deacon, leader of those who practice blood magic. Blood magic is a normal part of life for her, living on a farm, spending time with other blood witches like herself. Her peaceful existence is threatened, however, when she awakens a curse.

Will is an ordinary boy in an ordinary town. One day, a humanoid creature made of mud attacks him and he meets Mab. She's strange, and he tries to dismiss what happened, but a strange bruise leads him back to her, where he learns that he is now marked by a dangerous curse.

I really enjoyed Blood Magic, and I thought I'd love the sequel just as much, but honestly I can't say that I did. I liked Mab and Will, they were both interesting and good people, and I love how they were brought together through magic, but the book just took too long to get really, truly interesting. It was too slow paced for me. I spent a good portion of the book just wondering when the action was going to really get started!

I liked that the author included writings from the past, like from Mab's ancestor. It filled in the blanks and foreshadowed what was going to come. Sometimes I feel it distracted a bit from the main plot, though. And it made the book seem even more slow than it already was. 


Overall, I did enjoy reading about Mab and Will, but this book could have been a lot better. The pacing was too slow for me and it took too long for the action to really get going! 


Find The Blood Keeper on Goodreads


~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Vamps (Vamps, #1)


Series: Vamps
Author: Nancy A. Collins
Page Count: 235
Published: July 22nd, 2008
Publisher: HarperTeen
  2 Stars ★★


Lilith is the daughter of a very rich vampire, and as an Old Blood vampire herself, she attends Bathory Academy, a night school for young female vampires. Going out with her friends one night to find some humans for dinner, she gets into a fight with a New Blood, Cally. Vampire hunters descend upon them and kill one of Lilith's friends, leaving Lilith hating Cally and blaming her for the death. 


Cally is upset when she learns that she must leave her New Blood school and attend the Old Blood Bathory Academy. After narrowly escaping vampire hunters, she must now deal with the wrath of Lilith at school. Furthermore, one vampire hunter seems particularly interested in her, and she thinks she might be developing feelings for him too. 


I picked this up because I love vampires! And the idea of vampire feuds sounded really interesting to me. Unfortunately I found myself pretty disappointed.

First off, the characters weren't developed very well. They all seemed very shallow and I wish that the author had taken more time to make them seem more real. I outright hated Lilith, and I think I was supposed to care about Cally but I honestly didn't. I also think the romance between the vampire hunter and Cally was very unrealistic and happened way too fast.

There didn't seem to be any concrete plot to this book, so I kept reading wondering where this was going. Nothing seemed really connected to a greater story-line.

I did like the author's writing style, her choice of words was excellent in my opinion. I also thought there was an interesting twist near the end. Had the story been more solid and the characters more developed, this could have been a great book. Unfortunately it didn't really do it for me.

Find Vamps on Goodreads