Who am I to think I can have an actual tbr?! And why did I decide September of all months to attempt my tbr’s return?!
Salutations book lovers! I have been gone for a very long time. I think the last time I made a tbr was… back in December 2020. Time has flown. Literally. Almost half a year has flown by and I’ve barely uttered a word about my reading (outside of webcomics that is). Well, when I felt that first crisp breeze in the air, I knew it was time. The time to kind of… sort of… make an attempt at reading tbr piles again. However…
Currently I’m in a bit of a pickle because the majority of my books have been packed up due to planning to move. So right now I only have ebooks and audiobooks (which I don’t have many of either) are currently more available at my finger tips. It also means I’m prioritizing certain books over others as well. So for dipping my toes back into the tbr pool, I wanted to keep things… small.
Anyway, per usual, chaos is always coming from my finger tips or trailing in my wake. So I hope you don’t mind this small tbr. I’m actually really proud of myself and slowly crawling out of the reading burnout. I mean it, reading burnout is the worst and you should take care of yourselves if you think you’re starting to get it!
I know this was a really short list, but I really am trying to slowly ease my way back into reading. Trying to recover from reading burnout and life has been a real challenge. Though, I can honestly say I missed reading and I’ve missed reading like I used to. So it feels really nice to slowly be easing my way back intro things. And I have a few great titles selected for October, as well. I truly am hoping I can get these three titles read in this month though, but you know, if it overlaps into October… I’d be okay with it. 🧡
Salutations friends! I know it’s been a hot minute since we sat down like this and chatted. I know I’ve been a bit of a ghost and if I’m being honest, I wanted to get this posted so much sooner. However, life has been hectic and a lot has been impacting the content I’ve been putting out, but that’s for another time. We’re here to talk about books!
2021 has some really exciting titles coming out and I’m keeping my fingers crossed that I can read all the books I want to rad this year! Let me be honest, making this list was so hard because of all the titles coming out. However, these are just a few of the ones I want to read. I hope you enjoy! 💕
I was incredibly lucky to acquire a sampler of this book and oh my gosh, my soul is screaming! It hasn’t been confirmed on if this is a Medusa retelling yet, but the few chapters that were provided, in addition to the cover, has me full of hope that this is a Medusa retelling. And I’m here for it! I love retellings, I love Greek mythology, and the release for this book is right around the corner. Seriously, I can’t wait to find out what will happen next!
I absolutely fell in love with Where Dreams Descend this year and even made it one of my favorite books of 2020 because I loved it so much. When Janella announced the cover for the second book, it stole my breath. I mean, look at that cover! It’s stunning! Most importantly, I need to know what’s going to happen next. The first book left off on a cliffhanger and honestly, I really want to see the main character get the happy ending that she deserves. I’m so excited for release, but the wait is killing me!
For those who don’t know or haven’t been here that long, I have a very strong love affair for Hades. I love Greek mythology in general, but Hades is definitely my all time favorite Greek god, next to Hera and Persephone. So naturally when I heard this book was coming out, a giant happy screech escaped my body. The synopsis of this sounds fantastic and let me just call it, this is going to be five stars and one of my favorite books of 2021!
Let me start by saying how excited I am to read this book! Not only did I smash buttons incredibly fast to add this to my anticipated 2021 release, but I preordered this so quickly, it would make heads spin. I love books that are queer and have found family elements in it. Those were probably the biggest selling points for me when it came to this book. Plus, this is a local author for me and that encouraged me even more to preorder this book! So I’m keeping my fingers crossed that in the future they’ll have a couple a indie bookstore signings I can attend.
There are a plethora of reasons why I can’t wait for this book to be released, so I can read it sooner rather than later. The biggest selling point for me was that fact that the main character is biracial and that hits me in the most sacred, most softest part of my core because I, myself, am biracial. I’m half Native and I’m half Caucasian. Growing up, there has never been a lot of books that featured main characters who were half Native. And so for me, the fact that this character is biracial was enough for me to preorder this book, follow the author, the very few reviews I’ve seen of this book all fuel my anticipation for this book’s release. So I’m really excited and haven’t shut up about this book to a lot of my family because I have no doubt that this book is going to mean so, so much to me.
The shortest answer I can give to this: I’m trash for Maas and will probably auto-buy anything she releases. I love this series and I love Nesta even more. I know, I know! I can hear it now, “How can you like Nesta?! She’s horrible!” Well, the simple answer to that: I connect and resonate with Nesta more than any other character (except the Suriel) on multiple levels. I can through her hissing and venom or how heavy the trauma weighs on her, how hard it is for her to find normalcy after all the trauma, and if I’m being honest, Nesta is a breath of fresh air compared to Feyre’s personality and how everyone sees Feyre, and I really appreciate that. So yeah, very excited for this to come out. I’m guessing this is a two-three day read!
I feel like I’ve been waiting a lifetime for this graphic novel to release. Truly, I can’t wait for this to come out so I can read it in one sitting. Rereading the past volumes hasn’t been enough because I’m ready for the next installment. I think these characters are absolutely precious, that the author addresses some really important topics throughout this series, and the diversity is really wonderful to see. Very excited and I hope fans of this series have their calendars marked!
I really, really wanted to read this book in 2020. So many of my friends were gushing about it, the trusted reviewers I follow were raving about it, and I caved tremendously. However, the odds weren’t in my favor and no matter how fast I was reading or trying to make room, I couldn’t find a way to fit this in. With 2021 right around the corner, I really want to try to read this book sometime in the new year. I’m going to make time for it, even if that means taking a whole week or month to read just this book.
This is another auto-buy author for me. I read Cemetery Boys this year and fell head over heels for. Truly, I love Aiden’s writing and the characters Aiden brings to life. When Aiden announced they were doing a Neverland/Peter Pan retelling, I was absolutely thrilled. I feel that Peter Pan is one of those retellings not many authors try, but I’m so excited that after all this time, we’re finally getting one. So of course, I will throw all my money at this book and will get this read, hopefully in 2021!
I’m not going to lie, I absolutely fell in love with the synopsis of this book! It sounds like such a cute, fun read, and I’m here for it. Though I’ve been hearing mixed reviews, I’m still excited to pick it up and find out what’s hiding within these pages. Hoping I can read this around Valentine’s Day for the ultimate romance vibes!
Okay, when I say this synopsis spoke to me, what I really mean is this synopsis took my soul and ran with it. This is a middle grade novel that I’m highly anticipating in 2021. It sounds like it’ll be an emotional read and you know I’m here for books that pull all the emotions from me. This book is also by an Indigenous author I’ve never read anything from. So I’m really excited to dive into this author’s writing and connect with a new middle grade read.
If you have been here a hot minute, then you know Amanda Lovelace is one of my favorite poetry writers. I absolutely love this author’s writing and it’s been incredibly easy to fall in love with her books. Earlier this year I read the first book, Break Your Glass Slippers, and now I’ve been given the chance to read the second book. I’m really excited to read this. I know I’m absolutely going to love this book as much as I did the first one.
This was one of my anticipated releases of 2020 and sadly, I didn’t get the chance to read it. However, I want to make sure I set time aside so I can read this book. Of course, when the word of this book hit my ears and friends told me this is possibly a Sleeping Beauty retelling, naturally I wanted to read it immediately. And if the retelling wasn’t going to sell me, the cover alone was an auto-buy and must read for me.
This is one of those books that I’ve been putting off for far too long! I wanted to get the read back in May for the Asian Readathon, but things didn’t pan out. Life was taking all kinds of twists and turns for me, and unfortunately my read took a huge hit during end of spring-early summer. However, I really want to try to get this read in 2021 so I can finally finish this trilogy and then gush about it to all of you.
K. Ancrum has become one of my all time favorite authors. Truly, Ancrum is a blessing and I don’t know what we did to deserve her, but I’m so thankful. I have officially read all of her books and when I heard she had a new one coming out in 2021, I was ecstatic! So I’m super excited for this to come out. I want to read it as soon as possible and I’m counting down the days time I can have this book in my hand!
Breaks out the bottle of wine. Listen, I keep asking myself why I keep putting myself through this and I have two answers… One, I’m trying to be better about finishing series and two, the power the final book has over has been driving me to keep pushing through this series. Look, I really want to meet Death and see how their story will unfold in this series, and to do that I need to read the fourth book. So this is happening and it’s happening once I buy a bottle of wine to go with it.
Talia Hibbert knocked me out of the park with Get A Life Chloe Brown! I love that book so, so much! Unfortunately, I haven’t had a chance to sit down and read the second book in this trilogy. I’ve been hearing all the good things about this book and I’m really excited to continue on with the series. Dare I say, I’m hyped? Yeah, I’m really hyped for this book and I can’t wait to finally pick this book up!
This is such a wonderful series and I’m really excited to keep reading on. I know there’s a new book in the series coming out in January 2021. So I really want to read the next book in the series before I pick up the new release. Now, I’ve heard some mixed things about this book and if I’m being honest, that’s kind of why I haven’t picked it up yet. However, I really want to get it read in 2021 and hopefully it’ll be sooner rather than later.
Not only is this cover stunning, but the synopsis full captured my attention when it released. On top of that, everyone I know and trust has nothing but the highest praises for this book. And since I’m such a bigger lover of mythology, I’m ready to dive into this book. So I’m really hoping in 2021 I can pick this book up and find out what everyone has been buzzing about. Plus, I have a feeling I’m really going to love this book with my whole heart.
Stephen Graham Jones has become another favorite and auto-buy author for me. After I interviewed him, he’s truly a wonderful soul that has a fantastic way of storytelling. And after reading The Only Good Indians, I really enjoy the writing style that Stephen brings to his literature. I have been wanting to pick this book up, but horror hasn’t been the kindest genre lately. So I haven’t been picking up a lot of horror at all. However, I really want to try to pick this up in the fall of 2021 especially more towards spooky season. I have a feeling this book is going to be a fantastic read and I’m excited!
Whew, that was a really long list, but I’m so happy I made it. I wanted to do something like this for a while and I wasn’t sure if I was going to do it. However, I had a lot of fun and I hope you enjoyed it as well. If you have a book you really want to read in 2021, please tell me about it! I love putting new books on my radar to look into! Until next time, I hope you’re staying safe and healthy. I love you! 💙
Happy Holiday Season dearest friends! I hope all of you have been staying safe, staying hydrated, and staying cozy (or staying cool for my southern hemisphere friends)! 2020 is finally coming to an end and I think it’s safe to say we’re all ready to start a fresh new year. It truly has been a wild ride of a year and December seems like it came flying by. Also, I want to make a quick statement that things might be a little staggered with posting due to the holidays and this is going to be kept very brief. But enough of all of that! This Friday in the US is Christmas! Again, just like Thanksgiving, we do and don’t celebrate this holiday in my family. However, my family also celebrates Winter Solstice and Yule this time of year too! So the end of November and the majority of this month has been… busy, to say the least. But that’s the typical chaos that usually happens in my family around this time of year.
This time of year has always been my favorite. I love giving gifts to all my friends, making homemade presents, and just making their holiday season a little brighter with spreading the love. Moving along, you all came here to talk books and I’m sure you’re all curious as to what I could be hoping for during the holiday season.I normally don’t share my wishlist except with friends and family, but I figured let me share some of the books I’ve really been wanting for a while now.
Salutations friends! This is going to be a super sweet, short to the point kind of post! With the holidays just a week out from now, I’m a bit long-winded and currently trying to catch up on some things before the new year rolls in. So sit back and enjoy these few books you’ll see popping up on my tbr the next month or so!
Salutation friends! I know I’ve been a bit absent and haven’t put out as much content as I’d like, but I do have a new #5OnMyTBR post for all of you. I can’t begin to express how happy this prompt makes me. Animals has always been a HUGE part of my life and if I’m being honest, I feel like that’s a part of myself that I greatly suppress within the book community. There are times where I talk about my corgi or maybe one of my cats, but it’s a part of my life that I keep in a box and keep it tucked in the back of the closet (if you get my drift). And I don’t want to do that anymore… It’s a part of who I am, it’s a huge part of my every day life, and animals are a heavy influence in some of the things I read and watch on media platforms. So I’m really excited to open this side up to all of you and I hope you find a new book within these books that might interest you!
“The best medicine may not always be found at a pharmacy or in a doctor’s office. Sometimes it comes in the form of a four-legged friend.
Three well-known leaders in their fields—award-winning dog photographer Jesse Freidin, adolescent HIV+ specialist Dr. Robert Garofalo, and LGBTQ advocate and journalist Zach Stafford—offer a refreshing, beautiful, and unique portrait of HIV infused with a deep message of hope. Each extraordinary profile shows the power of the incredible bonds between humans and their canine companions, whether that means combating loneliness and stigma, discovering the importance of unconditional love, overcoming addiction, or simply having a best friend in a time of need.
When Dogs Heal shares the stories of a diverse set of people who are thriving and celebrating life thanks to the compassion and unconditional love of their dogs.
A portion of the proceeds from this book benefits Fred Says, an organization dedicated to financially supporting HIV+ teen health care.”
“S.T., a domesticated crow, is a bird of simple pleasures: hanging out with his owner Big Jim, trading insults with Seattle’s wild crows (those idiots), and enjoying the finest food humankind has to offer: Cheetos ®.
Then Big Jim’s eyeball falls out of his head, and S.T. starts to feel like something isn’t quite right. His most tried-and-true remedies–from beak-delivered beer to the slobbering affection of Big Jim’s loyal but dim-witted dog, Dennis–fail to cure Big Jim’s debilitating malady. S.T. is left with no choice but to abandon his old life and venture out into a wild and frightening new world with his trusty steed Dennis, where he discovers that the neighbors are devouring each other and the local wildlife is abuzz with rumors of dangerous new predators roaming Seattle. Humanity’s extinction has seemingly arrived, and the only one determined to save it is a foul-mouthed crow whose knowledge of the world around him comes from his TV-watching education.”
“When Katie Underwood discovers a litter of newborn cougar cubs, the last person she expects to come to the rescue is her former crush―and high school nemesis―Bowie Wilson. The worst part? He doesn’t seem to remember the trouble he caused her.
As a single father and owner of a cash-strapped zoo, Bowie struggles to balance budgets while raising his pre-teen daughter and a host of rascally animals. He considers himself lucky when Katie agrees to lend her talents to a publicity campaign in support of the zoo’s animal rehabilitation programs―until he learns just what she’s planning…
This time, Katie is determined to resist Bowie’s charm. But a lovelorn camel, a matchmaking honey badger, and a nursemaid capybara have different plans. Can they and the rest of the zoo’s menagerie help Bowie break through the barriers surrounding Katie’s heart?”
“When Terri Raines was twenty-seven years old, she took a vacation that changed her life. Leaving behind her wildlife rescue work in Oregon, Terri traveled to Australia, and there, at a small wildlife park, she met and fell in love with a tall, blond force of nature named Steve Irwin. They were married in less than a year, and Terri eagerly joined in Steve’s conservation work. The footage filmed on their crocodile-trapping honeymoon became the first episode of T”he Crocodile Hunter, ” and together, Steve and Terri began to change the world. In “Steve & Me, ” Terri recounts the unforgettable adventures they shared — wrangling venomous snakes, saving deadly crocodiles from poachers, swimming among humpback whales. A uniquely gifted naturalist, Steve was first and foremost a wildlife warrior dedicated to rescuing endangered animals — especially his beloved crocs — and educating everyone he could reach about the importance of conservation. In the hit TV shows that continue to be broadcast worldwide, Steve’s enthusiasm lives on, bringing little-known and often-feared species to light as he reveals and revels in the wonders of our planet.
With grace, wit, and candor, Terri Irwin portrays her husband as he really was — a devoted family man, a fervently dedicated environmentalist, a modest bloke who spoke to millions on behalf of those who could not speak for themselves. “Steve & Me” is a nonstop adventure, a real-life love story, and a fitting tribute to a man adored by all those whose lives he touched, written by the woman who knew and loved him best of all.”
“In pursuit of the wild, solitary, predatory octopus, popular naturalist Sy Montgomery has practiced true immersion journalism. From New England aquarium tanks to the reefs of French Polynesia and the Gulf of Mexico, she has befriended octopuses with strikingly different personalities—gentle Athena, assertive Octavia, curious Kali, and joyful Karma. Each creature shows her cleverness in myriad ways: escaping enclosures like an orangutan; jetting water to bounce balls; and endlessly tricking companions with multiple “sleights of hand” to get food.
Scientists have only recently accepted the intelligence of dogs, birds, and chimpanzees but now are watching octopuses solve problems and are trying to decipher the meaning of the animal’s color-changing techniques. With her “joyful passion for these intelligent and fascinating creatures” (Library Journal Editors’ Spring Pick), Montgomery chronicles the growing appreciation of this mollusk as she tells a unique love story. By turns funny, entertaining, touching, and profound, The Soul of an Octopusreveals what octopuses can teach us about the meeting of two very different minds.”
Whew! It feels like I’ve been holding my breath for such a long time and finally came up for air! I’m hoping in the future that you’ll see this side of me often and maybe I’ll do a animal book recommendation post in the future. Truly, I hope you enjoyed this and some of these books caught your interest. I’m excited about these books and I’m so happy I could share them with you. Do you have any books with animals that you love? Please let me know! I love reading books with animals or educational books about animals. Until next time, I hope you’re staying safe and cozy! I love you! 💙
Greetings readers! I hope you all have been doing well, staying healthy, and enjoying the little things! I’m so excited because I’m finally typing up an article I have been dying to create and share with all of you. While in the book community many readers know me for fantasy reading and books that don’t often get the attention they deserve, things are a bit different outside of the book community. In my personal life especially among my friends, I’m known for the manga, graphic novels/comics, and zoology books I tend to pick up.
Often, I don’t share the personal side of myself too much. Manga, I’ve been more open about that since coming into the book community, but the others… well I tend to keep that under lock and key. So, I wanted to be more unapologetically myself around all of you and in this community. So I thought to myself, what better way to do that than share all the web comics I’ve been falling in love with?! And today is the day! So I hope you all enjoy and check these web comics out, support the creators, and maybe fall in love with them too!
I think that covers all the web comics I’ve been reading a lot recently! I know I didn’t list the synopsis for all of them, but I want that to encourage you to go check out these web comics for yourself and decide if you want to read them or not. I hope you enjoyed this article, as well! I had a lot of fun putting this together and I’m so happy to finally be sharing it with all of you. Do you have a favorite web comic? Please, oh please let me know! I love discovering new web comics! Until next time, I hope your month is filled with love and good reading! I love you! 💙
Greetings lovelies! Can you believe that we’re already in December? 2020 went by so fast and I think we can all say that we’re ready for this year to be over. But this month I really want to strive to keep my reading light and have plenty of room to breathe. Usually this time of year I’m travelling or with family and I won’t lie, I very deeply miss them. So, my reading has been a bit… more mood reading than sticking to a tbr as of lately. And truthfully, I wasn’t sure if I was going to even make a tbr for December, but I’m kind of glad I did. I really enjoy making tbr piles and posts. But here are the five books I plan on reading this month because I miss my family so, so much and I’m healing from a lot of painful things this year, and I really wanted my reading to reflect that part of me.
P.S. There’s also two readathons happening this time of year as well. There’s the Tistheseasonathon & Smutathon happening! I haven’t decided if I want to try and participate, but I wanted to make sure you all knew these were taking place this month. And I can’t wait to see all the tbrs for these readathons!
I have been really enjoying this anthology so far. I wish I could have finished this in November, but these last two months are a bit of a stretch for my reading. However, I think many readers are going to fall in love with this book because there’s so many wonderful stories being told, by some very well-loved authors!
I have a confession… I started this anthology and never finished it! Which is really sad because I was loving this book so darn much! However, I’m finally making time to finish this book. Even if this wasn’t a pick for the Dragons & Tea Book Club, I would still try to finish this book before 2020 ended. Plus, I was really loving this book and with missing my family so badly right now, I think this is a good book to fill my heart with some warmth.
The publishing date for this book is coming up fast and with a synopsis that has me intrigued, I really want to read this for December. Plus, the whole book gives off wintery vibes and I’m here for it!
I really wanted to read this in November, but it just wasn’t in the cards for me to read it that month. However, with the publication date rapidly approaching, I really want to get this book read and have a review posted before the end of 2020. Plus, I think this is a book I really need to read right now.
I feel like I don’t talk about this part of my life a lot and I feel like I should because it’s such a huge part of my life, a huge part of me, but I’ve spent and do spend a lot of time working with animals. I spent a long time working with dogs and their behavior, and my own corgi is a certified esa (a.k.a emotional support animal). So, I’m really excited to read this arc and I’m even more excited to open up a little about such a huge part of my life to all of you. And hopefully in the future, you might just see a bunch of books revolving around or involving animals! On that note, I’m really excited to read this book! I’m a firm believer animals are healers, some special kind of magic we don’t deserve, and I’m always looking to read other’s experiences with animals.
Okay, book dragons! I think those cover all the books I really want to make sure I read this month. Honestly, I have a few other books I’d love to read. From arcs all the way to some arcs that don’t come out till Spring 2021. However, I’m really happy with how this tbr turned out and I’m so excited to read these books. Truly, I’m keeping my fingers crossed these all turn out to be five stars! I hope you all have an amazing month of reading, a wonderful holiday season, and that you continue to stay safe, and stay healthy! I love you! 💙
Content/Trigger Warnings: Talk of harassment, talk of sexual harassment, talk of cyber bullying, talk of misogyn, themes of misandry
I’ll be honest, I’ve been dreading writing this review and have been putting this off for far too long. I really wanted to love this book and there were some things that I found really helpful, informative even, especially because I’ve been in various nerdy communities for such a long time, but I find that my opinion is going to be of the minority when it comes to this book. So take my review with a grain of salt. However, if you’re a reader who’s looking for some opposing thoughts on a lot of the content that’s talked about in this book then I can’t recommend enough checking out these following videos: HERE, HERE, and if you’re looking for statics about online harassment then I recommend checking this article out!
Let me take a moment to talk about the good of this book. This book is true to what it is; a guide book, a self-help book, however you want to view it. I really loved how this book talked about the different types of conventions, navigating the conventions, budgeting and expenses, and even things to pack. Despite the fact that I’ve gone to various conventions, events, etc… for almost fourteen years, I still find this kind of information helpful and good for referencing. There’s even an ‘after the convention’ list that I would’ve loved to have had after all of these years. There’s also interviews in this book with various women in the industry who have worked on a plethora of nerdy, geeky things such as anime, DC and Marvel, etc… that I enjoyed reading, despite the repetitiveness and the awkwardness of some of the interviews. Also, this is a super quick read and most sections are very brief, easy to fly through.
Despite the few good things I found within this book, they weren’t enough to prevent the issues I had with a lot of the content within this book. One of the biggest things being the continued theme of misandry throughout this book. This is a huge issue for me especially when no one wants to talk about how this book is set up to convince you men are terrible and do nothing but terrible things. Throughout this book, the author continuously references how we’re all in this community together, how we’re supposed to be supportive of one another, no matter the gender, for about one to two pages, and then will spend the next three or four pages talking about how horrible men are and how their actions are always terrible towards women in nerdy communities. There’s actually a whole entire section based around ‘internet trolls’ that’s based in the context of assuming they’re all male. Even when the author talks about sexual harassment and assault in the cosplaying community, it’s always in the context of a man doing these actions. I can’t speak for everyone in the community, but basing my opinion on my own experiences and things I have witnessed as a cosplayer and LARPer, I’ve experienced and witnessed more female/female and male/male harassment and sexual assault than I have any situations that are male/female related. That’s not to say it doesn’t happen, but what I’m saying is we need to make sure we’re accurately talking about what really happens instead of assuming/creating a certain narrative to fit our own views. And when you continuously place these narratives of one side being innocent/good and the other being guilty/evil, then you’re continuing to cause rifts and issues within communities instead of helping it grow and make it a more positive community to be in.
Overall, this book was exhausting to read and writing this review has been something I’ve been dreading for a long time now, for a plethora of reasons. I don’t have the energy or time to list the multiple references to a lot of the things that were inaccurately talked about throughout this book (do your own research, listen to those who talk about the facts), point out every little thing that was wrong with this book, or even try to continuously explain to people how misandry is just as bad as misogyny no matter what community it is. If you can’t see the problematic issues within this book then I don’t know what else to say expect to check out the links I provided up above if you want to hear opposing opinions about a lot of the things that were talked about in this book. I wish so many things would have been handled in a different light especially since this is an introductory book, a guide/self help book and I know there are going to be young readers who will pick this book up and be influenced by this book. With the knowledge and experience I have, I can’t recommend this book because of the narrative this book takes on and I can’t support a book that inaccurately talks about a plethora of things.
Salutations friends! I have a cup of hot coffee and I’m hoping it’ll fuel me to share all my thoughts about November, and tell you a little bit about how it hasn’t gone exactly as planned. That aside, I hope you all are doing well, staying healthy, and if you’re struggling right now, I see you and I love you!
Now let’s talk about November. Oh boy, where do I start. I think I’ve mentioned a few times that I’ve been feeling very long-winded and I think I’ve narrowed it down to one thing that’s been looming over my head for about a month now. Yes, it’s a review and I have it started, but the thought of writing this review bring large amount of dread within me especially since I’m in the minority opinion. Even more dread from the fact that I’m bringing statics and various resources to this review, but I don’t know how many people are going to listen, let alone who may try to argue with my statements in that review. So it’s been a very big weight that’s been impacting my reading (if you couldn’t tell from the anthologies, manga, and graphic novels). Needless to say, November has felt like a very hard month to read.
On top of that, I’ve had a few classes I’ve taken and I’ve been working on a big project that I’ve been wanting to do, for almost three-four years now, but it’s been a process of gathering everything up. So hopefully I’ll be announcing this project in December or possibly by the end of December. I have to wait and see where things fall, but I’m excited to share with all of you. So as you can see, November has been a roller coaster and a challenge to get reading accomplished, but I still managed to read six things and I’m really proud of that.
🍂 Winter Counts by David Heska Wanbii Weiden ⭐⭐⭐⭐ | Read for theDragons & Tea Book Club 🐉 I’ll be honest, I was really nervous about picking this book up. October wasn’t the best month for reading thrillers and suspenseful books, and I was nervous this was going to fall in the category of ‘books I shouldn’t have picked up right now’ pile. But, I’m pleasantly surprised how much I enjoyed it and there were some quotes I pulled from this book that really hit a certain spot within my soul. The writing of this book was absolutely lovely and very well written. I don’t know if this author has other pieces out yet, but I’m excited for the next story this author creates. Also, I really appreciated the insight of the hardships and issues Natives face, but most importantly, I loved how this book is carving out a space in a genre that doesn’t have enough Indigenous voice represented. And let me add this side note; when I saw Winter Counts (and a few other books by Native authors) had made it onto the GoodReads choice awards, it’s an impactful moment when you see those who are like you paving a path and making a space to say, “I’m Native, I’m here, and look at everything I have accomplished.” Words can’t express how important it is to see and hopefully, we’ll see this happen more often in the future.
🍂 Ancestor Approved: Intertribal Stories for Kids by Cynthia Leitich Smith ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Pub. Date:February 9th, 2021 I absolutely loved this book so, so much! There were a lot of parts in this book that I found healing and many parts that I connected to. Also, there’s a plethora of diversity throughout this book. From the different family dynamics, to alternating perspectives, all the way to seeing how each story is connected to one another and happening along this same timeline. It was just a fantastic read and it made me miss going to Powwow with my aunts so dang much. Hopefully in this future, I’ll be able to return with them and have my spouse experience their first Powwow with us. And I promise, I’m working on the review for this book. I just haven’t decided how soon I want to publish the review since this book doesn’t come out till February of 2021. So, it’s coming, I promise. I just don’t know when yet.
🍂 Delicates (Sheets, #2) by Brenna Thummler ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Pub. Date:March 16th, 2021 I loved this graphic novel so much! I enjoyed the first graphic novel, Sheets and thought it was cute, endearing, and a bit whimsical. However, this one was a whole other level of enjoyable. However, this graphic novel touches on a lot of hard topics like peer pressure, bullying, thoughts of suicide, etc… I do have all the content warnings listed on my GR review, but I definitely recommend caution for the depictions of suicidal thoughts and feelings. Otherwise, this is a really good book and I think many readers are going to really enjoy it the way I did.
🍂 Together, Apart by Erin A. Craig ⭐⭐⭐ I really wish I would have loved this more, but I think I went in with my expectations too high. I really thought I was going to have more emotional pull than I did, but there were some that didn’t pull any emotions from me. However, there were quite a few gems within this anthology that I absolutely adored and wished were a bit longer than they were. I think a lot of readers are going to see themselves or their situations within this book and I think many readers will find emotional validation to how they’re feeling since quarantine happened. Also, there’s a wide diversity throughout this book. From characters of color, to LGBTQIAP+, all the way to the family dynamics. I think readers are going to enjoy this anthology.
🍂 In Love & Pajamas by Catana Comics ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Pub. Date:February 2nd, 2021 Absolutely adorable! If you’re looking for a graphic novel that’s going to make you laugh, smile, and charm it’s way into your heart then you need to read this book. I saw so much of my spouse and I within these pages. I couldn’t help falling in love with this book because it’s too precious. I highly recommend!
🍂 Whisper Me A Love Song (Whisper Me A Love Song #1) by Eku Takeshima ⭐⭐⭐⭐ I was pleasantly surprised by this manga. Let me start by saying that if you’re looking for a manga to lift your spirits with love at first sight and two characters who have personalities that work really well together then you definitely need to give this manga a chance. The chemistry is really good and neither love interest overshadows the other. However, I definitely had the issue of the two main tropes, love at first sight trope and two people not being on the same page, feeling like a bit much. Regardless, I’m excited to see how the rest of the series will play out!
I’d say that was a successful month of reading. I hope you all enjoyed this little wrap up of mine. I know it wasn’t super long, but hopefully I’ll get caught up in December. What was your favorite read of November? Please let me know! I’m always looking for new book recommendations recommendations. Until next time, stay cozy and safe! I love you! 💛
Salutations dearest readers! I’m so happy you’re here and so happy I get to share another Thankful Top Ten Tuesday with all of you! Truly, I love doing this post every year because I enjoy the time this post allows me, to sit and pause, to appreciate all the little things and the things in my life that I may not have given thanks to recently. I usually see this post as a time to allow myself to stop and reflect on a lot of things.
This Thursday in the US is Thanksgiving! I know many people in the US celebrate this holiday and I hope you all have a marvelous time. As I’ve mentioned before, things are a bit different with my family. I’m very open about my heritage and being half Apache, but I’m not as vocal about beliefs and other personal details with my heritage, but I thought I’d share a little bit. Usually, we do and don’t participate in this holiday. It’s something I’ve had conflictions with for a long time and it’s something I’m still trying to find peace with. Usually, my family, my spouse, and I will hold a vigil early Thanksgiving morning (I’m talking before dawn), followed by the feast that takes place throughout the entire day, but we try to have down time by late afternoon to catch up with family, share stories, etc… However, my spouse’s family tends to be more more split between locations (starting with meeting up my in-laws and then going to my spouse aunt and uncle’s home for drinks, food, and documentary watching) and how the holiday is celebrated. So it’s a bit of a mixed bag and we alternate each year. However, with everything that has happened in 2020, with quarantine, and things happening with both my spouse’s family and my family, we won’t be having our traditions with them this year. However, we’re still hoping to video call one another and try to participate as much as we can with our families while social distancing.
I also wanted to make this post a little different this year. Last year’s post was all about books and looking back on it, I feel like I need to tweak and modify it due to my own personal feelings changing, as I learn and grow, about some of the books listed. However, this post isn’t going to be only about books. This post going to show glimpses into my life of things that have been keeping me happy, helping me heal, and just things that have made 2020 less prickly to my soul. I’m super thankful for each of these things because 2020 has been a hard year, on everyone, and I think taking a moment to be thankful and appreciate those things that have helped make that time brighter is important, rewarding, and just a great way to heal from some of the pain this year has caused. So grab some tea, maybe a snack, and I hope you enjoy this little glimpse into my life of things I’m really thankful for!
For those who don’t know this about me; I’ve spent a large portion of my life (still spending my life) rescuing animals, working with shelters, rescues, rehabilitation centers, and even sought out a degree in working and studying animals. Even right now as we speak, I’ve been taking a few classes to maintain my knowledge despite everything in the world. In my opinion, my biggest strength is the bonds I establish with animals I work with. With all of this in mind, Emzotic has played a huge portion in bringing joy to my morning routine and even my winding down in the evenings. If you’re an animal lover like I am and someone who has devoted large portions of their life to their love of animals like I have, then I can’t recommend checking out Emzotic enough!
I do a lot of studying, I write a lot of in depth reviews, and I do a lot of morning/late evening meditating. Chillout Deer has been one of my go to channels for relaxing music to help with focusing on these things. They’ve also become a prime channel for music when I’m cleaning, decorating, or organizing. If you haven’t check out their channel, I definitely recommend giving them a chance, they’ve been a big help!
Though I haven’t updated my GoodReads (let’s be honest, I’m slacking hard with GoodReads), but I’m really enjoying my time reading the arc of this book. So far, I’ve laughed, I’ve cried (a lot), and I’ve really been loving this book. This might be the book that helps push me to ending my reading for 2020 on a good note. And this might be my next top favorite book of 2020?! I try not to over-hype books, but I think many readers are going to fall in love with this book and I’m so excited to read the reviews that come out!
I don’t know why I’m so nervous to share this part of myself… anyway, STORY TIME! A couple of years ago, I actually had quite a few Squishables (they made me really happy and they helped with some of my anxiety hardships especially when my spouse was deployed), but after I started getting more involved with the book community, I actually closed off that part of myself really tightly and got rid of all of them. As of recently, with a lot of my healing, I realized how much harm I caused to myself by closing that part of me off and keeping it so suppressed. Since realizing this, I’ve gotten a couple and it’s been really helpful. Some of them I use as pillows, two of them I use as an improvised “stress ball” (this usually involves a lot of squishing and rubbing the different textures), and some are just snuggle buddies for night time. But I’m really happy, I can’t even begin to talk about how easier it feels to breathe, and I didn’t realize how much I needed to reopen that part of myself until I did.
I always say how important it is to support small businesses and I really try to push that as it approaches the holidays. More recently, I’ve really been pushing small Indigenous businesses especially this small shop, Ukiuq Designs. I have bought a couple of pairs of earrings from this shop and I absolutely love them. One pair has sunflowers on it and if you’ve been here a while, you know sunflowers have a huge sentimental story behind them and why I use them so often on my blog. My most recent pair I purchased, I actually used a little of the graduation money from my aunt to buy the pair. They are absolutely stunning and when they arrive, you better believe I’m going to be sharing them in my IG stories! But I really love this shop with my whole heart and each purchase I’ve made has contributed to some portion of my own healing. And I really love the energy that Michele brings to her business and she’s just has such a warm, kind personality. So as the holidays approach, I’d like to push you in the direction of Michele and her shop because I think she deserves more attention than she gets and it would make my heart so full if more people supported her small business.
I mentioned this in my ‘How I Take Reading Notes’ post, but I had to talk about it here as well. Notion has been a complete changer for me. It’s really allowed me to get organized, I mean really organized. From my note taking, to organizing the arcs I’ve been getting approved for, all the way to the chores I do in my every day life (like cleaning, scrubbing the bathroom, etc…), Notion has been making things so much easier to keep track of everything and being thoroughly organized. Now, I’m not saying this is a solve all because I still cause giant messes and stray from the path, but it’s helped make things easier and as someone who needs some form of structure or routine in their life, Notion has really helped with getting some of my chaos in order. Maybe I’ll do a whole post dedicated to Notion. Hmm… Anyway! It’s been a really big help and personally, this has helped with some of the every day stress I carry on my shoulders. As I said in my note taking post, I definitely recommend checking this site out. It combines a wide plethora of elements that can really help with getting organized especially in the book community, it’s been taking the book community by storm! So check it out and see if it help you because it’s definitely helped me.
🍂 Games 🍂
That’s it, this is my default photo I’m using for anytime I reference my gaming habits! Gaming is something that has been with me my entire life. If someone asked me to name a time where games weren’t in my life, I wouldn’t be able to tell you. However, games have made a big difference for me this year and I didn’t realize how much until two nights ago, where my spouse and I played for early evening to 4 a.m. Not to mention it was Civ. and I hadn’t played that game in a year because the weight of life prevented me from wanting to take on strategy games. So being able to take a dive into strategy games now has been so invigorating. I was on such a good high that I wanted to do another round the next day, but in light of how exhausted we both were, my spouse and I agreed to keep this game specifically for the weekend. Still, it was a really fun time.
And speaking of games, I’ve recently been playing Animal Crossing again. I took a long break from it because I couldn’t focus on the joy the game brought me due to every thing happening in my personal life. So I’m really happy that I started playing it again. I’m excited for the upcoming updates and I’m just really grateful a game like Animal Crossing exists!
🍂 Friends 🍂
I had to include this because my friends mean so, so damn much to me. Many of them have been friends for 6+ years and some are newer friendships. They have been wonderful souls who rallied when I needed them the most this year and I’m so thankful they’re in my life. Just like I would for my family, for my friends, I would move Earth and sky for them. So I’m really lucky they’re here in my life and they love me for me.
🍂 My Spouse 🍂
This goes without saying, but they have been my lighthouse, my safe harbor through this whole year. They have seen me hit some really deep, dark rock bottoms this year and they’ve been such a safe place that’s pulled me out of those moments. And of course, they’ve had a huge role of my blog with a lot of the designs you see on the blog posts and they’ve been so encouraging, and supportive of every thing I do book wise. I’m truly lucky to be married to them and that out of all the people in the world, we found each other. And I just love them a whole, whole lot.
🍂 The Furbabies 🍂
If you’ve been on my IG then you know my four chaotic beans make appearances from time to time. They always steal my heart, but since quarantine they have been rock stars. They give all the snuggles, they’ve been getting into ridiculous shenanigans, and they just warm my heart so much. And though all four of them get all the snuggles, kisses, and all the play time, I still think they deserved to have their own little section on this list because they play such a huge roll in my every day life. As a little side note, three of my pets are rescues and I want to put an extra bit of love of how grateful I am that each one survived long enough so they could become part of my family. Each one of them is such a blessing and I’m really grateful that each of them came into my life.
Okay, I got sappy for some of those parts, but I’m so thankful for each of of the person/people, pets, and things I listed in this post. These are all chunks of my life, of my every day that means something to me and have allowed me to heal in my own way. And as always, I have to acknowledge the history of this month and the events on the 26th of this month. I know a lot of people in the United States celebrate Thanksgiving by having a big celebration, having a large dinner with family and friends, but I want to take this moment to remind everyone that one of the main genocides of the United States was the genocide of the Indigenous people. I don’t want to get into details on the stories that have been passed down through my family members that they pass down to me each year, as a reminder. Also, November is Native American Heritage Month in the United States. I have tried to read Indigenous books this month, but my reading this month has been panning out the way I was hoping. However, I do have a review for Ancestor Approved coming soon to my blog and GoodReads. So keep your eyes peeled for that. Until next time friends, I hope this holiday you stay safe, that you feel the love of your friends and family, and maybe you finish a five star book before this month ends! I love you! 💛