Salutations Chapterlings! August is here and with August comes a new tbr, and an update. This month will hopefully be an easy going month. Usually, I make my tbr packed with books I want to read or accomplish reading for the month, but I’m deciding to be more gentle with myself. And more gentle with my tbr. Hopefully I’ll be able to read all of these books! Also, in the month of August there are two big readathons happening right now, ARC August and A-spec August. I hope you end up participating in some of these and I can’t wait to see your tbrs!
As for the update, let’s rip the band-aid right off. Honestly, I was hoping to feel comfortable to come back into the book community stronger and better, but… that’s just not the case. I’m still going to be on lock down for the month of August and might even extend it into September. There’s a lot of things happening that have made me very unsafe, uncomfortable in the book community, and I’m not in a position where I feel comfortable talking about it right now. So as of right now, I’m taking it one day at a time and hopefully I’ll return. I also realize there are so many wonderful new people here in my little corner of the book community. I’m so glad you’re here and I appreciate you so, so much for supporting me. It truly means a lot. I promise, when I come back into the community, brighter and better, that I’ll have an introduction to the content creator post. For now, I love you all so much, I’m so happy you’re here, now let’s get into my tbr for August!
I feel like this list should’ve reflected my desire for spooky season just a little bit more. I’m just ready for fall to be here already, but for now we have to get through August. I’m so excited for my August tbr. As I’m making this post, I’ve started the audiobook of Boyfriend Material by Alexis Hall. Most of the books I’m reading for this month are arcs and some of them come out really soon. But that wraps everything up for my August tbr. I hope you enjoyed this list, maybe some of these books caught your eye. Let me know down in the comments below what you’re reading for the month of August or link your tbrs. Until the next time we chat, may the month of August bring you wonderful reading, I hope you continue to stay safe and healthy, I love you! 💛
Da’anzho (pronounced dah-ahn-zho) or Hello in Apache! For those who are new here, welcome and for those who have been here, it’s good to see you again. As you can tell, this is going to be a post a lot different than I usually do. For anyone who doesn’t know, I’m Indigenous, I’m Apache. I’m as open as I can be about my heritage and I take a lot of pride in it. I’m truly grateful for my friend, Michelle for creating this tag. If you’re not following Michelle and the amazing content she makes, please go check out her content HERE. To be honest, I’m really nervous about this tag, but I hope you learn something about me and maybe that will spark you to do your own research about the Apache. Without any further delay, let’s get this tag rolling!
🌻 Hoka Hey – Introduce yourself, clan/tribe (active or terminated, it all counts) 🌻
Da’anzho (pronounced dah-ahn-zho), my name is Autumn and I’m half Apache. I learned at a very young age about my heritage from my Aunt. Some things you should know is the majority of the members in my father’s family have rejected our heritage and the culture that comes with being Apache. Only three of my Aunts uphold Native American traditions, culture, and heritage. It wasn’t until I got into my teens that I really started to deep dive into my family’s history and heritage. While I know how far back in my family our heritage runs, I haven’t had any success in tracing what tribe our family originated from. I’m still searching to this day.
🌻 Native Things that just make sense – What’s your favorite book with Indigenous characters? 🌻
I’ve mentioned this a few times, but never went into details about it. I don’t have a favorite book with Indigenous characters… yet. I spent the majority of my upbringing reading books in my school libraries because of medical reasons, but those libraries never had any books with good or any Indigenous representation. It wasn’t until I was in 8th grade that I discovered the Twilight Saga, but even then (we know where I stand with that), most books I was encountering with Indigenous representation, it was done very poorly or stereotypical representation.
🌻 Regalia – Most colorful book/bookish aesthetic, and if you have regalia, can we see it? (totally okay if you don’t feel comfortable posting) 🌻
I think anyone who follows my bookstagram knows I had a major glow up with what I wanted for the theme and backgrounds I use now. I realized really quickly that while I liked wooded backgrounds, I really enjoy neutral color backgrounds, but still wanted it to have a texture to it. So that’s why you see more neutral backgrounds and themes with what I use. Plus, it allows the cover of the book to really pop!
I do not own any regalia. I’m not a dancer (there are many different types of dancers such as Crown Dancers, Devil Dancers, etc…) but I wish I was. Anytime I watch any Apache dances, it steals my breathe away every time. This is one of the more recent that I have seen that also provides some information, HERE.
🌻 Auntie & Uncle: Favorite Indigenous movie 🌻
This movie was absolutely everything. It touched parts of my soul in so many ways and I don’t think I ever stopped crying during this entire film. This is a documentary that follows the life of ten-year-old Dujuan, as he learns two different systems of knowledge, what it means to learn history through public schools and to learn your history through the elders of your heritage and culture. There were so many amazing lines throughout this movie, but I think the one that really hit home was a statement Dujuan said…
“I want my future to be on land with strong language and culture.”
If you haven’t seen this documentary yet, I highly recommend it. I don’t usually watch a lot of movies or television, so this is how you know it’s good. You can watch the trailer HERE.
🌻 Frybread or bannock? What’s your favorite trope? 🌻
Um, frybread! Yum!
Oh no… I don’t know if I have a favorite trope. There’s a lot of tropes that I like or enjoy, but I’m not sure I really have a favorite. I guess if I had to pick one, I guess hate to love or enemies to lovers? I honestly don’t know for this one.
🌻 Gramma’s the best-What’s your favorite auto-buy Indigenous author? 🌻
I don’t know if I have one yet. If anything, I think Stephen Graham Jones is probably an auto-buy for me now. After interviewing him, having a great conversation with him, and then reading The Only Good Indians… I just have no choice but to stan!
🌻 All-Nations: What is a book that made you feel the most represented? 🌻
I think I mentioned this earlier, but I have yet to read any book with Apache representation. However, the author Darcie Little Badger is Lipan Apache and she is the first author that I’ve come across who’s Apache. She has a new release coming out August 25th, 2020, Elatsoe. I’m super excited about and I have no doubt that it’s going to make my list of top books for 2020!
🌻 They Say Native Girls Look Mean: Favorite female character/author? 🌻
I’m probably going to say Rebecca Roanhorse. She seems like such a sweet being and all I want to do is read all of her work. Race to the Sun is sitting on my shelf right now taunting me, but I’m trying to save it for November. She also has Black Sun (Between Earth and Sky #1) coming out on October 13th, 2020 and I’m so excited for it! If you’re a fan of fantasy then please add this to your must read list! Plus, the cover is stunning!
🌻 Star Quilt: What’s something you hold dear from your culture (beadwork, handmade things) 🌻
As of right now I only have a few items that mean the world to me. The first item is a necklace with a piece of blue agate that has Kokopelli on it. Kokopelli is a fertility deity, but is also known as a trickster and a spirit of music. You can read more about Kokopelli HERE. I was given this necklace after I had joined my school’s choir. The next piece is more of a choker than a necklace, made from turquoise, and it’s another piece that features Kokopelli. I was given this necklace by my Aunt after I had received my first award from my school as the “song bird” of the school. And the final jewelry piece I own is a necklace of all turtles handcrafted from turquoise. It’s the crown jewel of all my jewelry, the most delicate, and one that holds the largest place in my heart. This piece was given to me by my Aunt and mother when I attended my first PowWow. In many Southwest Tribes, from what I have by told by my Aunt, represents precious water and if you know anything about Southwest Tribes, water is a true gift.
Of course, I have dreamcatchers throughout my home. You can learn more about dreamcatchers HERE and HERE. My very first dreamcatcher was given to me when I turned sixteen. My Aunt had taken a few months to relearn how to weave dreamcatchers and presented me with this red dreamcatcher with a bull skull in the center. The other dreamcatchers I have in my home have all been sent from my best friend. She’s also Apache and spends a lot of time going to PowWows, traveling back and forth from the reservations. Each one means so much to me, she and I have been friends for six or seven years now (she’s my ride or die), but the very first one she sent me was white with white and brown feathers, which now hangs over my bed.
🌻 Don’t Whistle at Night: Scary story as a Native? Also favorite book with horror/thriller? 🌻
I don’t really have any scary stories I feel comfortable with sharing out in the open.
Hmm… I grew up in a house where horror is the definition of Friday movie night. My mother loves horror. I don’t think I have a favorite horror book yet. I mean, yeah there’s Dracula by Bram Stoker, but I’m not a huge horror reader. The only book I can recommend (at least for now) is The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones.
🌻 He even drinks water, INDIGENOUS: List your favorite actor/actress, book, media, whatever you like. 🌻
You want my whole list? HERE WE GO!
Adam Beach, Irene Bedard, David Midthunder, Roseanne Supernault, Floyd “Red Crow” Westerman, Rodney A. Grant, Saginaw Grant, and of course Graham Greene.
🌻 It’s a Good Day to be Indigenous: Tag your Indigenous friends 🌻
And all my fellow Indigenous readers and reviewers who I didn’t tag! Ya’ll should do this tag! Also, if you’re non-Indigenous and you’ve never heard of any of these content creators, change that right now! These are only some of the amazing creators, with so many more I haven’t listed (because that would be an extremely long list), but they are all wonderful souls and I highly encourage you to spark up a conversation with them, to support them, and to boost their voices. I say this all the time; we are here, we review books, we want our voices to be heard, we want to have conversations with you about books we love, and even though we are small in this community, we are mighty.
Woo! I may have gotten a little emotional with this post and may have ended up with missing my Aunts, like a whole lot. So that concludes the Indigenous Bookworm Tag. Once again, if you’re not following Michelle and her content, go do that right now! She’s such a warm soul and is truly a gift. I’m so thankful to have her in my life and I get to call her my friend. And as I mentioned, make sure you check out the other content creators I listed above. They’re all amazing people and they have been so loving, so welcoming, and they’re all incredible in their own way. I hope you, yes you dear reader, enjoyed this post. I hope it moved you to go do research, to learn about Indigenous people, learn about the history, and I hope it encourages you to lift the voices of Indigenous readers in the book community. Until next time, may you continue to stay safe, stay hydrated, I love you. 💛
Salutations Chapterlings! Hell has frozen over because I’m finally bringing a book haul after what seems like ages! Plus, the sunflowers are back to make posts a little bit brighter this summer. Now, these aren’t all the books. I’m still waiting on a few books to come in the mail. So I might loop those in with my July book haul (if I do a July book haul). However, I have received some amazing books and I have to shout-out a bunch of amazing people because some of these books wouldn’t have come into my possession without their help. So a huge thank you to Stephen Graham Jones, Taylor, Eliza, Michelle, Dani & Erin (who were champions for the all of us Indigenous book dragons), Isabella at thefeministbookworm, Donna from Momsbookcollection, and last but not least, my spouse! Make sure you go check all of these amazing people out. Without out them, some of these books wouldn’t have been possible and wouldn’t be on this list. I’m truly grateful and a feel very blessed to have met so many incredible people and have so many wonderful people in my corner who support me. So if they’re seeing this, thank you and I love you, so so much!
Now that I got emotional, I have to address something very serious before getting into the haul. It’s more of an announcement. Those who have been following me for a while probably know that my last book haul was from Book Outlet. I already made public statements on all my other social medias when everything had come to light, but this is me making an official announcement on my blog. I will no longer be doing any hauls from Book Outlet. I will not be supporting them any further. I have since unsubscribed from their mailing list and blocked their email. I refuse to support companies who choose to make statements and handle things the way they did. If you don’t know what happened, just go to Twitter and look everything up. I don’t want to allow anymore of them into my space than what I already have.
On that note, here is the haul. There’s a lot of amazing books by some amazing authors here and I hope that all of you take the time to look into the authors, pre-order some of these from your local bookstores, and just look into the books themselves. Anyway, I hope you enjoy!
Wow. Every time I look at these books I have received, I truly feel blessed and knowing that I have met some amazing people because of these books… absolutely priceless. I don’t think I say it enough, but I’m truly grateful for this community, for the connections I have made, and just… I truly feel blessed and I never thought all of this would happen. I know 2020 has been a wild year so far and I wanted to say for those of you who are still here, who enjoy my content, and allow me to be myself, I see you and I cherish you. I hope you enjoyed this book haul. I know it’s been a hot minuet since I did one, but I’m so glad that I was able to get this posted. How could I not post about this when so many individuals came together to make it possible. If any of these books caught your interest or if you want to hear my thoughts on any of these first, please let me know in the comments below. Until next time, stay safe, keep hydrated, I love you! 💛
Salutations Chapterlings! I wanted to do something a tad bit different compared to what I usually do. You’ve seen me make dedicated playlists for various books, but you haven’t seen me recommend a single song for specific books. So below, I have chosen ten books and ten pairing songs. You may dance, you might laugh, you might feel a little nostalgic, and some you may end up crying. No matter what, I hope you will enjoy these books and these matching songs.
I love this series with my whole heart and soul. From the characters to the mythology, I love every piece of this series and I can’t recommend it enough. So would you be surprised if I told you that the only way to read this series is to listen to the Memoirs of a Geisha soundtrack? I couldn’t choose only one song and since it feels like I’m recommending the whole trilogy, well… you just need to go listen to the soundtrack as you read!
This duology is just my whole heart and soul. I love the way Bitty and Jack come together, the way they love each other, the way they handle the challenges that face them, and it just turns my heart into a giant puddle. And only one song came to mind when I decided to feature this graphic novel duology, You Are the Reason (Duet Version) by Calum Scott feat. Leona Lewis. Every time I hear this song, I instantly think of Check Please and everything these two graphic novels talk about, the romance, the way they’re friends and teammates support one another, and just…everything. This duology is everything!
Who doesn’t know about Heartstopper by now? Just like the duology before, this is a series that I love with my whole heart especially because of the way bisexual representation is shown in this graphic novel series. But I also love the way this series tackles so many important topics like homophobia and learning about one’s sexuality. And even though I love all of these things equally, I really love the way Charlie and Nick come together. It’s so wholesome, so realistic, and my heart just melts when I think about it. So I had to, I absolutely have to recommend Can’t Help Falling In Love by Haley Reinhart. I love how perfectly this song matches to Charlie and Nick falling in love, becoming a couple, and just them being together. What can I say? I’m a die hard romantic.
Of course I had to put this book on this list! This made my top books for 2019, this book has it’s own playlist, and I am dying to get my hands on an arc of the next book in this series! I love these characters, I love the world building, and I loved how it was so easy for me to fall deep into the story line. Bonus, this has multiple povs and I never, ever rave about a book that has more than two povs. And to pair this book with a song that’s outside of the playlist I have already created, well… Born For This by The Score is the perfect choice! This is a song that’s sure to get your blood pumping as you read about these five main character with an intertwined destiny and a prophecy to fulfill.
Oh ho, it’s time to talk about one of my all time favorite series! A series is which I still need to finish, but that’s besides the point! I love this series, I love Audrey Rose, Thomas Cresswell is bae, and each book’s world building sucks me in immediately. It’s no surprise that Kerri Maniscalco is an auto-buy author for me and it’s all thank you my spouse when they gifted me Stalking Jack the Ripper one morning. And if I had to choose one song to pair with this series, I would have to choose Revelation by Abel Korzeniowski. With the setting of each book, this is a perfect song to help enrich the chills you’ll experience as you read each book. I really love it and it’s from one of my favorite television series.
Okay, I promise I won’t get too emotional and sappy. Oh god, I love this book so much for so many reasons. This is one of my favorite reads for 2020 and I’m still not over it. Every time I think of this book, my heart ignites with so many feelings. Plus, there’s so many themes involving space! Now, it might be a little cliche, but the song that reminds me of this book the most is Vanilla Twilight by Owl City. I know, it’s a total throwback song, but it makes me think about so many things this book deals with. From space, relationships, and friendships, this book fits perfectly with the constant theme of family and love.
Yup, I’m going to make you feel all the emotions with this this book and song recommendation. This was the first book I ever wrote a review for on this blog and it was the first book that I cried the whole way through in a long, long time. I’m not going to lie, this book wrecked me in so many ways, but I have to talk about this book. I feel that this book isn’t talked about enough in the book community and it’s a greatly underrated book. In case you didn’t get the hint, this is me telling you to go read this book… and we should have a conversation about the whole thing! But while you’re reading this book, I can’t recommend the pairing song, Heart by Sleeping At Last. It’s no secret that Sleeping At Last is one of my favorite bands to listen to, but this particular song of their’s fits so well with the atmosphere, the constant change in emotions, and learning to find your place with a family member you don’t know much about.
I recently finished the audiobook and I can already tell I’m going to love this whole series. I’m still finalizing my review, but oh, this book is so good. I love how this book shows what it means to explore your sexuality, learning what it means to truly try before dismissing something or someone, and the slow burn is so, so good. This book also explores what it means to try to overcome bad relationships and really shows the reality that things are easier said than done. Aside from the romance, there’s also a character in this book who is visually impaired and I think the representation was well done. This is just an all around great book that I really enjoyed. Still kicking myself in the butt for not picking this up sooner. But you need a song recommendation and I can’t think of better song than Deep Blue by The Midnight. This song describes our main character, Theo, absolutely perfectly and how he learns about his sexuality, his desires, and eventually, him coming to the realization that he loves the main love interest.
I absolutely had to include this book! First anticipated release of 2020 to be five stars and it has so many themes similar to Phantom of the Opera and Moulin Rouge. I absolutely loved this book. I’m still thinking about it, still spamming my friends whenever I get the chance about this book, and counting down the days until the next book is released. I loved the characters, the world building, and mystery of it all. So naturally when I was thinking about a perfect song to pair with this book, I instantly thought of Just Like Fire by Pink. What better song to give you a glimpse at how headstrong, ambitious, and spectacular our main character truly is!
I have debated for hours if I wanted to add this book onto this list. Yes, yes I do. I read this book in 2019 and wrote a pretty emotional, heavy review for it. We’re now in 2020, this book is always on my mind, I carry a piece of this book with me and this book a piece of myself. I would champion this book so hard, if only you knew. If you haven’t heard of this book before, I don’t want to spoil anything for you. I will say that this book is a letter from all the victims of molestation and rape who never had their story told, never received justice for their suffering. So, I will leave the only song I can recommend to pair with this book. How To Save a Life cover by Boyce Avenue
Okay, friends! I may have gone a little soft, a little sappy, and shared a piece of my heart with all of you. I really, really cherish that book though. Who am I kidding, I cherish all of these books! They wouldn’t be on this list if I didn’t love them in some way. If you haven’t checked out any of these books yet then you definitely need to change that. Each one is so amazing in their own way. Please, feel free to tell me in the comments below about the books and song pairings that you have. Until next time, please continue to stay safe, stay healthy, I love you! 💕
Salutations Chapterlings! I mentioned this before in my Authors to Support during Self-Isolation article, but I am one of the many hard workers helping with the Social Distance Book Fest! There are so many incredible people coming together to put this together with Bethany from Beautifully Bookish Bethany spear-heading this whole entire event. If you haven’t checked out the event yet, make sure you check out all of our social media links; Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr! Now, without any further delays, let’s tackle this book tag and spill my answers for these amazing questions!
🌼 Worldbuilding in Speculative Fiction & Historical Suspense: Share a book with great world building 🌼
This is probably one of my most favorite books that has amazing world building! I remember when I was reading this book, I was constantly holding my breath and I swear, I could almost feel the atmosphere wrapping around me.
🌼 Tackling Consent, Gender, and Toxic Masculinity in Romance: Share a book with enthusiastic consent 🌼
Many romance books do this, but I could think of no better book! Not only does this book show positive consent between a man raised to treat women right and a widowed mother of three, but it also shows toxic masculinity and having a toxic person who uses misogynistic language to justify their actions, trying to shove their way into your life.
🌼 So You Want to Start a Booktube Channel: Offer one piece of advice for aspiring book tubers 🌼
I will tell you the exact thing that was told to me when I express interest when I wanted to start my channel. Let go of the fear and just do it! I could sit here and tell you a whole list of things like be consistent, talk to people, etc… but you shouldn’t let fear hold you back from starting something you want to do or love to do. I held back from making my channel, my blog, my bookstagram because I had this fear of being unaccepted, being made an outcast, people attacking me for sharing my opinions and my love for the things I love, being hated for being myself and I reached a point where I just did it. It was the most liberating thing I did. When I let go of that fear, when I allowed myself to breathe and allowed myself to be myself, I made a place for myself in the book community and I’m really proud of it. I have made so many wonderful friends in this community, have had so many opportunities, and that would have never happened if I never let go of the fear. Besides, the best way to learn and let people hear what you have to say is to just start. I think that’s the best advice I can give to anyone who wants to get started in the book community or branch out past their perch.
🌼 From Boys in Outer Space to Magical Girls & Guillotines: Queer Voices in Science Fiction & Fantasy: Share a favorite sci-fi or fantasy book with queer representation 🌼
I kicked off the new year by reading The Weight of the Stars by K. Ancrum and what a book it is. I love this book with every fiber of my soul, my being, my whole heart and I’ll never be over it. There’s amazing lgbtqiap representation in this book and if I could, I would put this book in every person’s hands.
🌼 Beyond Stephen King: New Frontiers in Horror: Share a creepy book written by a woman, a person of color, or someone from the LGBTQIA+ community 🌼
If we’re being honest, I haven’t read a lot of creepy books. I was originally going to state Things We Lost in the Fire by Mariana Enriquez, but then I started to remember what that book did to me and then I said, “Nope, not today Satan!” So I chose Wilder Girls by Rory Power. Not only is this book written by a female author, but there’s plenty of body horror and lgbtqiap representation within this book. It wasn’t necessarily a creepy read for me, however, it is classified as a ya horror novel.
🌼 Fierce Femmes: Standing Your Ground: Share a book with a fierce female protagonist. 🌼
Let me just say this, I already love this book as a whole. However, my love for Ephyra in this book is an undying flame and what she chooses to do so she can save her sister, is my whole soul. She is a character who I still vividly remember after all this time since reading this arc in 2019. She is fierce, loyal, and would take any measure to protect the ones she loves.
🌼 Navigating Latinx Identity in Fantasy: Share a fantasy book with Latinx representation 🌼
Although I still need to reread Wild Beauty by Anna-Marie McLemore, this author has a beautiful way of writing their books and bringing to life a story-line full of life. I think Anna-Marie McLemore is an author that deserves a little more boost for the worlds she creates. I’m currently hoping to pick up When the Moon was Ours soon!
🌼 Family, Friendship, & Determination in Middle Grade Fiction: Share a middle grade book with a great family or friend group 🌼
I debated so hard on this and I think I’m going to include two answers to this question. For starters, the obvious choice for me was The Outsidersby S.E. Hinton. I remember reading that book in middle school, watching the movie and absolutely loving it! Not to mention, this is a group of friends that would ‘ride or die’ for one another and that’s kind of my own policy with my friends and family. So it hits a special place in my heart!
The second recommendation I have is Pax by Sara Pennypacker. I haven’t heard many readers talk about this book in the book community. However, this is a book that is sure to give you The Fox and the Hound vibes. This is a book that left me in puddles of tears and this is a friendship that’s sure to make any reader appreciate their furry companions.
🌼 New Voices in YA Panels (SFF and contemporary): Share an upcoming release that you can’t wait to get your hands on! 🌼
This is the absolute hardest thing to answer! I’m just going to send you to THIS ARTICLE!
🌼 From Sherlock Holmes to Veronica Mars: Variations in the Mystery/Thriller Genre: Share a favorite mystery or thriller! 🌼
I just recently read The Adventure Zone: Murder on the Rockport Limited! and fell absolutely in love with it! I mean, I always love The Adventure Zone, but this book has to be my favorite so far! I love a good murder mystery (probably why I love Clue so much) and this was so much fun, so intense, and an all around great time. If you’re a fan of adventure/mystery books, then you should pick these books up!
🌼 Identity Formation & Deconstruction in Adult Fiction: Share a book that deals with identity in a positive or negative way. 🌼
Okay, I have two answers for this one as well! For starters, Mooncakes by Wendy Xu & Suzanne Walker is fantastic. We see two young teens navigating how they feel about one another and the representation in this graphic novel is absolutely fantastic!
I also want to add the Check Please books to this mix because there’s so many positive moments of coming out to friends, falling in love and developing a relationship, and then in book two, there’s so many good moments as well. So I can’t just pick one, it has to be both books!
🌼 Social Distance Book Fest: Share a bright spot from the past few weeks! A book you read, a moment of self-care, something that made you laugh etc. 🌼
I have been reading so much this month and I’m honestly surprised. The first few months of 2020 felt like such a hard hit especially to my reading and now I’m reading so many books that I’m trying to catch up on reviews. But the thing that makes me so happy about all this, I’m enjoying reading and despite being sick with some type of flu, I have really been enjoying myself. I just feel really happy right now, in this moment and with the things I’m doing. Plus, I found the music video I have been trying to hunt down for months!
Okay, friends! Those are all the questions for the Social Distance Book Fest Tag! I hope you all enjoyed my answers and I hope you all are making plans to join in the fun on Saturday, April 25th, 2020! Let me know down in the comments below if you’re attending the Social Distance Book Fest or if you did the tag as well, let me know so I can check out your answers! I will also leave all the questions down below as well as Bethany’s tag video so youcan also participate in this wonderful tag! Until next time, I hope you enjoy all the bookish magic on Saturday, I love you! 💕
1. Worldbuilding in Speculative Fiction & Historical Suspense: Share a book with great world building 2. Tackling Consent, Gender, and Toxic Masculinity in Romance: Share a book with enthusiastic consent 3. So You Want to Start a Booktube Channel: Offer one piece of advice for aspiring book tubers 4. From Boys in Outer Space to Magical Girls & Guillotines: Queer Voices in Science Fiction & Fantasy: Share a favorite sci-fi or fantasy book with queer representation 5. Beyond Stephen King: New Frontiers in Horror: Share a creepy book written by a woman, a person of color, or someone from the LGBTQIA+ community 6. Fierce Femmes: Standing Your Ground: Share a book with a fierce female protagonist. 7. Navigating Latinx Identity in Fantasy: Share a fantasy book with Latinx representation 8. Family, Friendship, & Determination in Middle Grade Fiction: Share a middle grade book with a great family or friend group 9. New Voices in YA Panels (SFF and contemporary): Share an upcoming release that you can’t wait to get your hands on! 10. From Sherlock Holmes to Veronica Mars: Variations in the Mystery/Thriller Genre: Share a favorite mystery or thriller! 11. Identity Formation & Deconstruction in Adult Fiction: Share a book that deals with identity in a positive or negative way. 12. Social Distance Book Fest: Share a bright spot from the past few weeks! A book you read, a moment of self-care, something that made you laugh etc.
Salutations fellow readers! It’s hard to imagine that we’re almost half-way through the month of April and being in self-isolation. I haven’t talked about it much, but we did have a huge scare here and thankfully, everything is fine now. However, at the time I can honestly say that my mental health took a nose-dive. It was terrifying and as careful as my spouse and I are, the reality was a force that shook my core. We’re all fine now and we’re both in better mental states, but those two and a half weeks were scary. Otherwise, we’re doing exercising when we can, eating lots of salads and possibly have a fridge full of ice cream, and we have been power watching Star Trek together. I dance around in the kitchen listening to The Midnight and my spouse deep dives into playing The Forest. It’s a win, win for the both of us. But I wanted to talk about some of the things that have been keeping me happy, sane, and just some things that have really helped bring my mental health back from the wild trip it nearly went on. I also want to say that there is one item on this list that was a gift and I am in no means telling anyone to go and purchase this item. This item is something my spouse had purchased for me because my mental health declined so rapidly and they hated watching me unravel and being unable to do anything about it. So I just wanted to make you aware of that before you come across it. Anyway, I think I jabbered long enough. So lets’ get into the little things I’m enjoying during isolation!
I mentioned this up top about my spouse, but I’d be lying if I said it was just my spouse. My spouse, one of my dear friends, and I have been playing The Forest. It’s a survivalist game and it’s pretty intense. Regardless, we’ve been having a lot of fun, we just started a new game, and we finally established a base. If you’re a gamer, like myself, and you enjoy survivalist games then you definitely want to check this out. The atmosphere is amazing, the overall story makes you crave knowledge, and the battling can be really intense. I do caution those who have anxiety when playing this game because it really heightens the anxiety and yes, I have stepped away from this game a few times due to my anxiety spiraling. But I truly enjoy the game and I think many will. If you haven’t heard of this game yet.
Remember when I told you about that gift my spouse got me? Yeah, this is the gift. I have been a huge supporter of SpiritHoods for a long time and I have a few specific pieces of their’s that I use as part of my LARPing costumes. I have even been supporting the non-profits that they donate to for longer than I’ve know SpiritHoods. If you want to know more about them then I will refer you to the About SpiritHoods page. And that’s where I leave that! But I am truly grateful for my spouse and them recognizing when I was in turmoil because I didn’t even know it until they had said something. So this is just a really special gift and I’ve kind of been a burrito inside this blanket since it arrived.
🌸 Obviously Books 🌸
My reading has had weird fluxes as of recently, but I’m reading a lot more than I anticipated. And since we’re in April, I have to admit that I have a lot going on in April reading wise. Firstly, I have a buddy read starting this week. Secondly, I am participating in the Stay Home Reading Rush that’s taking place from April 16th-19th. So we’ll see how well that goes! I’ve also been vlogging…A LOT. I’m very surprised with how big a desire there is to vlog and read right now. It’s insane and I’m genuinely shocked that I want to. So it’s an interesting time for me right now. With how busy I am in my personal life, the desire to read and vlog is just at a high right now. I’m also reading an arc of Where Dreams Descend by Janella Angeles and I am loving it so far! So if you have NetGalley, I believe this is a free read and you should go snag it!
🌸 One special corgi🌸
For those who don’t know, I have a corgi and he is the goodest bean. He’s also been a really great comfort and has been my reading, blogging, and napping buddy. He’s actually snuggled up with me right now as I type this post. He’s just the best and he deserved his own mention!
🌸 Book Sleeves 🌸
I always say how much I love supporting small businesses. Well, I have been and my recent obsession has been book sleeves. I get my book sleeves from three small businesses and so I’m going to list them here in case you need a new book sleeve too!
Okay, friends! Those are just a few of the things I’ve been enjoying in isolation recently. I’m sure there’s more, but these are the only ones I can think of at the moment. I hope you all enjoyed this list! I know I had a lot of fun putting this all together and sharing it with all of you. Please feel free to tell me in the comments below some of the things you’re loving in isolation right now! Until next time, I hope you’re staying happy, healthy, drinking lots of water, I love you! 💕
Salutations friends! It feels like it has been a minute since I did a haul of this size. Normally, I try to avoid doing big hauls. However, this has been in the works for a hot minute and I blame all the sales BookOutlet has had over past couple of months. Nonetheless, I’m so excited to finally bring this haul to my blog and even more excited to show all of you! Mostly, I’m excited due to the fact that some of these are hopefully going to put towards some readathons that are coming up in the future. So this is a really exciting haul and I’m so happy to share this with all of you! Just don’t ask me what my plan is for organizing them!
Okay, readers!Those are all the books that I have hauled, in secret, for the past couple of months! I hope you enjoyed this haul, maybe you found some recent books to add to your TBR or you may want to haul. Feel free to tell me in the comments below what you love most about BookOutlet or one book you’re hoping to haul for the month of April. Until next time, I hope you’re staying snuggly, reading plenty of books, and of course, I love you! 💕
Salutations Chapterlings! Welcome to Part Two of this Q&A! If you haven’t read Part One yet then please make sure you do so. This article is going to be a lot heavier and addressing a lot more personal questions. I will be answering these questions as best as I can without going into too great of details. These are a lot more personal and as much as I like to be open with all of you, I have my limits and boundaries. Now, without any further delays, let’s get into the questions!
Have you had any negative experiences in the book or blogging community?
We’re hitting hard right from the start, huh? The answer is yes. Normally I don’t like to dwell on negative things because it’s really bad for my mental health and I don’t want to keep a space for that kind of negativity. I got into pretty decent detail in my Life Update post, if you haven’t seen that then I recommend checking that out. In short, I was basically being harassed and bullied because I received an arc of a certain 2020 release. These people felt that it was unfair for a small book reviewer/content creator to receive such a highly sought after arc and they made that very clear by making me feel unsafe on all my social media platforms. I took a step back after that.
Why do you put content warnings at the beginning of your reviews?
That’s just a personal preference of mine and I have done since my first experience of reading a book that had no content or trigger warnings. It really messed up my mental health and it took two and a half weeks to feel okay again. When someone reads my review, I want them to know what this book involves and some of the things that will most likely be discussed in my review. The best example I have of this is my review for Sadie.
I’ve noticed when you talk about mental health in your reviews, it comes from a place of knowing. Do you have mental health struggles or just have a wide knowledge of it?
I knew someone was going to ask this question. *Warning, I will be talking about various mental health topics like depression, eating disorders, suicide, etc… Please be aware of that when reading my answer to this question.*
Yes. I actually have mental health struggles. I have quiet a few actually. I guess the best place to start with all of this is I grew up around people who struggled with mental health, severely. As I got older, I developed a lot of mental health challenges. I developed bulimia nervosa at the age of eight because I was constantly surrounded by those who hated my body. So I started to hate my body too. I developed severe anxiety at the age of eight, as well. This was due to a toxic and abusive home life. When I hit my early preteens, I battled depression, self-harm, and attempted suicide. By this time, I also had a drug addiction and an alcohol problem due to trying to find a way to cope with everything happening in my life (those things being people dying all around me and severe abuse). After all of this, I ended up in the hospital from losing weight too fast and my lowest weight being 96 lbs and dropping. Eventually, I was sent to a mental health facility where I learned I have Bipolar Disorder I and PTSD which explained a lot of the things that were happening.
After all of that, I finally started living better to help manage my mental struggles (like my severe anxiety) and to better handle them. Even now, I still have disordered eating, I still have to take medication to manage the Bipolar, and I’m still trying to understand my PTSD to the fullest. And I’m thankful to have a partner who understands the importance of mental health. So when I talk about mental health in my reviews, it comes from a deep knowledge, of having experiencing it, living with it, and experiencing so many things at a young age that no one that young should have to go through. So understand, I take that content very seriously especially when I review a book and if I find that material is doing more harm than good, I will address it in my reviews.
Do you have any recommendations for coping with mental health while reading?
It all depends on the person, in all honesty. Something that may be triggering for me may be entirely different for someone else. For myself, I will have an asmr video or an instrumental video playing on my phone or television when I start reading a book. However, if I feel content is becoming too triggering then I will step away from the book. I won’t force myself to read past that. When I step away, sometimes it’s a few hours and sometimes it’s days. Ultimately, I do what’s best for me and if my mental state is responding really negatively to the content I’m reading, I will ‘dnf’ that book. The best example I have is my review of Things We Lost in the Fire. I will also list one of my favorite asmr rooms as well.
You’re not feminist enough to review books
Originally I wasn’t going to post this comment because it truly is a negative comment and I don’t like inviting that into my space. However, I saw an opportunity with this comment that was just too important to ignore. So this is all I have to say about this.
Misogyny is just as bad as misandry.
If you’re bisexual, how can you be married?
Would you be surprised if I told you that I get this question all the time and on Pride I get bombarded with this question, consistently? Yes, I am married, but that doesn’t change my sexual orientation. The way I always explain it, if I were to get a divorce today or tomorrow, that wouldn’t stop me from being attracted to men, women, or non-binary people. It’s just a part of who I am, it will never change no matter where I go in life, and I will always be very open about that.
What was the hardest part of coming out as bisexual?
I think the hardest part was dealing with the backlash that came from having my relationships with the girls I dated out in the open. It was extremely hard while is school and even harder on those I dated. There were many things that were hard with coming out, but that was the toughest to really go through and watching my partners having to suffer was the worst of it.
How do you respond to negativity or negative comments?
My approach is usually to ignore and delete. I say it all the time, I don’t like negativity in the spaces that bring me joy. I think it’s fine for people to have different opinions and have constructive conversation. However, when things start to turn into heated arguing, saying nasty things to one another, etc… I tend to erase that stuff immediately. If this somehow finds it’s way into my messages, I will report that person and delete the message. I don’t like negativity in my spaces.
How do you cope with your anxiety?
I think this ties in with a previous question, but it varies for everyone. For myself, I listen to a lot of asmr to help keep me calm and relaxed during reading. When I’m at home or out in public and I start to get anxious, I have to do something with my hands. So I usually keep things on me that allows me to keep my hands busy. At home it might be video games or using a stress ball. Out in public I might have a fidget spinner or rubik’s cube. I also tend to keep items with soft textures near by as they help calm my anxiety. If I’m lucky, one of my pets may be nearby and I may go pet them for a while. If you do like asmr, I will leave another link for another favorite asmr video.
Do you have an unpopular opinions?
Yes. Yes I do and it’s a lot.
🌸 Women can play football, backyard or otherwise.
🌸 Mountains are better than beaches. Take a trip to New Hampshire sometime, you’ll thank me later!
🌸 ASMR is amazing and I don’t care what you say!
🌸 Personally, I think Night is better than Day.
🌸 Although I like tea, very much, coffee is better.
🌸 ACOFAS wasn’t terrible and a nice pace changer. I WILL FIGHT YOU ON THIS.
🌸 I will always choose Andriod over Iphones. Stop trying to convince me they’re better, I will list so many reasons why they’re not.
Okay, I really had to stop myself there before I just spent a really long time doing that list. Just know that I have many unpopular opinions, those are the ones that I could think of on the fly. Alright, those are all the personal questions. There are actually a few I didn’t answer because they were just far too personal and I really didn’t feel comfortable answering them. Regardless, I hope you enjoyed Part One and Part Two of this wild Q&A! It truly means the world that you would stick around to read both parts. I truly appreciate all the love and support that each and every one of you give to me. I hope you know how grateful I am and that I hope I can continue to show how much it means to me by the content I put out. Until next time, stay safe, thank you for the love and support, I love you! 💕
Salutations friends! I can’t believe my blog has officially hit one year old! This wouldn’t be possible without all of you! For believing in me, wanting all of this to succeed, and for loving me the way that I am. You all have made this all possible, inspire me each and every day to create content, and I love you all!
And apparently you all are very, very curious about the person behind the screen! A while ago I put out ways for you to tell me the questions you wanted to ask, literally ask anything, and I was shocked with the amount of messages. So many questions that I actually divided these into two parts. Most of these questions were able to be categorized as something book related and nerdy or something personal and heavy.
So if you’re reading this, welcome to part one of this two parted Q&A! I hope I don’t disappoint with my answers! Just sit back, relax, and let’s answer some of your questions!
Haveyou learned anything new about yourself?
The short answer is yes. The more specific response is I need a thorough schedule to do everything that I do. I balance my personal life and the things I do for my blog, for Bookstagram, etc… I keep them separate, but I realized I have to stay on a constant schedule otherwise my whole momentum gets thrown off. I’ve learned that there are many people who appreciate the content I create and I have made some truly wonderful friends that I never thought I would have made.
What are your favorite bookish posts that you’ve written?
One of my most favorite posts is my review of Sadie. It was one of the hardest reviews I ever wrote, I get very emotional and personal in that review. I’m extremely proud of that post. My second favorite would be my Wicked As You Wish by Rin Chupeco Blog Tour and Review. Talking back and forth with Rin, I left our conversation with a very deep appreciation for her and the other authors who recognize the smaller bloggers and content creators. It truly was a wonderful experience and I’m glad that I got to be a part of her street team for Wicked As You Wish.
Do you review every book you read or just arcs?
I usually review every book that I read. I take extensive notes. If I have multiple copies of a book, I will use one for my own library and then the others for taking notes, annotating, and discussions. The only time I don’t review a book is a ‘dnf’ book. It’s rare when I ‘dnf’ a book, but it does happen.
What are some of the things that you accomplished because of your blog or being in the book community in general?
I feel like I have come a lot farther compared to when I first started out in the book community. I have been a part of the book community for a long time. I believe 2014 was the year I dipped my toes into getting involved, but I think I truly started feeling accomplished as I started to branch out and develop my skills. I became more of a critical reviewer, I found an aesthetic that makes me happy (which I have a new background that I’ll be testing out on my IG soon), and I really started to carve a space for myself, that’s something I’ve never done before because I never knew how to make a place for myself to exist (that last bit will tie into a on part two of this Q&A). There’s many things I accomplished because of books and I’m very grateful to be where I am right now.
I know your birthday is coming up in May, what are three books you’re hoping to get or do you have a wishlist?
I think I know who this is, May is still a ways off, and yes, I have a wishlist which you can find HERE, but please don’t feel obligated to get me anything. I am very blessed with the books that I have right now and with tbr carts that are overflowing, I shouldn’t be getting more, for now. If I absolutely had to pick three books to receive for my birthday, it would be the ones below.
I drink a lot of Harney & Sons tea, but I also drink a lot of the Yogi Tea as well.
You mention that you game a lot, what are your top five favorite games?
Okay, okay! You’re now a very precious bean and I will protect you at all cost! I love talking shop about games and that’s one of the hardest questions to answer. So all my favorite games will be shown below!
How do you find inspiration to write your articles?
Everywhere and from everyone. Sometimes I get asked a lot to do specific articles like my Sekaiichi Hatsukoi series review. Sometimes I end up with something right on the dot and then I’ll write it down so I don’t forget. Other times it’s usually a lot of coffee.
I read your ‘About Me’ section. You do LARPING?! Can you tell us about your character?!
My main character is an elf mage named Malliumpkin. I play a few side characters with my group, as well. Usually those side characters are healers or temporary encounters. We have even done a few side quests where I have been random creatures such a fauns, spirits, and animal shapeshifters or shamans. Most of my gear was crafted by a dear friend. Other pieces I invested in myself. And that’s all you need to know! Aside from the fact that the next event we do will be our 100th LARPing quest. If you’re looking to get started, I highly recommend checking this article out!
How do you manage to read and blog on top of everything else?
I have a giant calendar hanging on my wall where I write down all my buddy reads, my readathons, when blog posts need to go up, etc… I also use Google Calendar to communicate to my spouse important information like appointments, personal events, etc… With those two tools at my disposal, I can keep track of where my time and energy is being spent. Did I mention I write down the times for all of things? I include the time with everything I do. My days are usually planned to the very last minute before I need sleep. That’s usually how I stay on top of managing my life and then everything with reading and blogging.
What are some books you could put in anyone’s hands right now?
How do you take notes and do thorough reviews?
Oh jeez… My process is very chaotic and all over the place, if I’m being honest. I use a sketch book to take notes for my reviews, I use sticky notes to make side notes inside my books, then I have colored tabs to indicate important information, and then I have pastel highlighters for going back through and narrowing down the information sections. It’s a really chaotic mess and usually when I’m like that my spouse will have to bring me snacks and drinks because I will go at it for hours with annotating, drafting, narrowing things down, etc… It’s just wild and I come out looking like a wildling every time.
A mythical creature you would want to turn into?
Do you have any best friends?
I’m pretty sure I know who sent this and yes I do, I love each and every one very dearly!
Do you have any pets?
Yes I do! I have three cats and a corgi! If you follow my IG then you will occasionally see them pop up in my feed and they even have their own dedicated story header!
Is there anything you want right now?
I feel like this another one of my friends asking for birthday purposes. So please read the question above asking about my birthday and wishlist. If it’s not, I could really go for some sushi and some starfruit right about now!
What color are your eyes?
Many people think my eyes are brown, but they’re actually hazel. My eyes can turn all the way to the brightest shade of topaz all the way to a dark, dark brown, almost black.
How long have you been gaming and reading?
I have been reading and gaming since I was a kid. Six years old is how far I can remember being really focused on reading and gaming. Years later and I’m still focused on gaming and reading!
What would you tell someone who wants to start their own book blog?
I would tell you to just start. My biggest fear was just getting started and I think it helps to hear from someone who was really nervous about starting their bookstagram, starting this blog, and just being more involved in the book community than what they were. It took me a while to work up the courage to start, but once I started, I couldn’t stop and I found some of the most amazing people who I now get to call friends. This community is very welcoming and if you’re looking for someplace to carve out your own space, the book community is a lovely place to start.
What are the top three songs you’re listening to right now?
Okay, friends! Those are all the personal questions that were book related, very nerdy, and just stole every part of my heart! If you have any other question, don’t hesitate to ask in the comments below. I do like to be as open as I can be with all of you, so don’t hesitate. Part Two of this Q&A should be happening shortly after this article is posted and this article is going to be much heavier, more personal, and so many hard topics are going to be talked about in that article. So I hope you’re still able to join for Part Two! Until next time, thank you for all you love and support, I truly appreciate you! 💕
Salutations Chapterlings! I’m finally getting my March Book Haul up! Granted, there are a few pieces missing from this haul, but that’s okay! March was an intense month in so many ways and before this haul really starts, I see you and I love you. Things are challenging for so many of us and I hope you all are staying as safe and as healthy as you can! March was a whole lot of something and many of (including myself) are still trying to make sense of it all. So know that your feelings are valid, I see you and understand, and I love you.
March was a month full of surprises though! One of those surprises being that fact that I bought a bunch of e-books. I’m still shocked that I got so many because I not an e-book reader. The only time I read an e-book is for an e-arc I get approved for. Most surprising thing to happen in March and I’m really excited to read these e-books! So, I mentioned that there are a few pieces missing. This is due to them running late or showing up at the end of March and not having enough time to truly get them looped in with this haul. So keep your eyes peeled for my April book haul because there’s a chance those missing pieces will appear in April. On that note, I think I’ve held this up enough so let’s enjoy the haul!
Okay, friends! Those are all the books I acquired in March! I still can’t believe I got so many e-books! I never thought I would see the day where I really want to read e-books. I hope you all enjoyed this little haul. Please feel free to tell me in the comments below if you read any of these books or the books you hauled in the month of March. Until next time, stay safe, drink plenty of water, and as always, I love you! 💕