Where I went, what’s been happenin’, and a huge ass reading wrap up

Hi, I’m back!

I haven’t posted regularly since March, and while it started out as a reading slump, my life took over pretty quickly after that and I just haven’t felt motivated. Within the last couple days though, I’ve had the urge to post again, so here we are!

So the main thing that happened while I’ve been gone is this:

As of writing this, I’m 25 weeks along and I’m due in November. I’m having a boy! So I’m neck-deep in baby shower plans and adjusting my life to prepare for a new human.

Part of this includes dismantling my book room, and I’m bummed about it! I mean it’s worth it so he can have a bedroom but maaaan. In addition to losing the book room, I had to purge a bunch of books. Total, I have seven book cases in that room, and the living room, where we’re moving the books, will hold only about five book cases. So I had to purge. Last weekend, my buddy came over and helped me purge them. It’s to the point where I’m having difficulty doing a lot of bending and straightening in short succession so she helped me maneuver through the shelves.

So that will be a what, a ‘series’ on this blog for a bit – transforming the book room into a nursery, setting up the books in the living room, etc etc etc. PS, I’m also documenting this process on my instagram (shameless plug) where I tend to post what I’m doing for the book room in my stories, and I have a highlight of the progress so far.

I took some before pictures, so note these are the last shots of the book room I have before we started killing it:

And here are some shots of the purge:

So, I’ve gotten rid of about eight shelves worth of books. The small shelf on the right is going to stay in the book room and be used for baby books, and otherwise I’ve gotten rid of about another case’s worth. I haven’t decided what to do with the empty case yet – keep it in there for more baby books or get rid of it or use it as storage or what. Not sure yet.

In a few weeks, I’ll be having some friends over to help me physically move the books and cases out of the room and down into the living room. As a part of that we’ll be moving some storage from the living room into the nursery to use for the baby. The stuff that’s currently in that storage…? I’ll figure out what to do with it. I need to wall space tho, man.


So that’s what’s been going on with my life. I’m happy to say my reading slump is mostly over, so I have been reading again, even if not at my usual pace.

This is what I’ve read since the last time I posted:

Manga

Prince Freya vols 1-2 by Keiko Ishihara – This is a fantasy manga following a girl who takes the place of an ailing prince when he dies, and impersonates him to keep the peace in the kingdom. I do have vols 3 and 4 as well, but haven’t gotten to them yet. So far, I’m pretty interested.  4 and 4.5 stars respectively

Skip Beat! vol 1 by Yoshiki Nakamura – I’ve had my eye on this series for a while, so I’m glad I picked it up. This follows a girl who decides to get revenge against a boy who used her by surpassing him as a famous performer. It’s honestly pretty funny so far, and it’s not taking itself seriously. I like it. 3.75 stars

Waiting For Spring vols 5-14 by Anashin – I finished this series out by reading the last ten volumes in a row. This is a cute shojo romance about a girl who falls for a boy on the basketball team. It’s sweet and simple and dramatic and exactly what you’d expect in a shojo. The love interest is a sweetheart too so that was nice. 3.5-4.75 stars each

O Maidens in Your Savage Season vols 1-8 by Mari Okada – Part of this was a reread, namely vols 1-4, but the other four were new reads. I’ve finished this series out now too. Eight volumes of hilarity and awkwardness and drama. This series follows a group of girls as they start to be exposed to puberty and sex and it’s so painfully relatable. It’s a coming of age humor, not a raunchy thing, just fyi. It’s really sweet…. mostly. 3.5-5 stars each

Books

Dragon Wing by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman – This was a buddy read I did with Zezee @Zezeewithbooks and it was okay. It follows a few different perspectives in a world that is actually a bunch of different floating land masses, all hovering over the Death Gate, this unknown realm at the bottom of the universe. The characters were unfortunately a bit flat, as was the plot. The premise though had so much potential so I was a bit bummed, and have since decided not to continue with the series. 3.25 stars

The Frozen Crown by Greta Kelly – This was a 2021 release I picked up on a whim. Total impulse purchase, and it was the first step out of my reading slump. I ended up getting through this book in a few days, the fastest I had read anything in a while. This follows a young woman trying to reclaim her kingdom from invading neighbors and has witches and all sorts of fun things. It was rather enjoyable. 4.25 stars

The Obelisk Gate by N. K. Jemisin – This was another buddy read I did with an IRL buddy. This book fell victim to my reading slump, and it took me forever to finish. As a result, it got a lower rating than the first book did. Keep in mind, this was a me issue, not a book issue. I really liked the book. 4.5 stars

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanna Collins – If you remember before I disappeared, I was rereading the Hunger Games series and reviewing each book in prep for this book, which was also going to get its own review, buuuuut whatevs. I cannot be bothered.

I did really enjoy this book. I went into it hearing that it wasn’t that great but honestly it surprised me. I was expecting it to try to redeem Snow or make him a likeable character but just “misunderstood” but nope, nope. He’s a dick, and you can see his slow decent into villainy as the story progresses. As far as villain origin stories go, I think this one is worth the read. 4.5 stars

The Blade Itself by Joe Abercrombie – This was another buddy read with Zezee, and I gotta say I liked this one a lot more than the other buddy read we did. This one we’re planning on continuing for sure.

This story hasn’t really… developed yet, though. Book one is very much a set up book, but it’s really got me interested. There’s a corrupt government and wizards and weird buildings and metaphysics and it’s just really neat. 3.75 stars

A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J. Maas – This is another one that fell victim to my reading slump and took me ages to read. This book, like all of Maas’s books, I both loved and hated. I recognize that they’re not stellar literature and parts of it were driving me nutso, but I don’t know, there’s just something about them that’s so readable and enjoyable and just utterly ridiculous. I never go into this expecting to take it seriously, and I feel like as a result I end up enjoying them. 4 stars

Notre-Dame de Paris by Victor Hugo – If I’m being honest, this is one of the few books I’ve ever come across where I recommend the abridged version. I did not read the abridged version and I regret it.

This was a buddy read with Katy @Bookbinderway and I think she liked it more than I did. I purged this book with my nursery-book room purge and I’m never lookin back man. The main plot was fine – I didn’t mind it. But augh if I have to read one more rant about buttresses. 2 stars

The Wolf by Leo Carew – This book I got as a gift two years ago from my IRL buddy and I finally got around to picking it up. Overall I enjoyed it, but unfortunately I’m not motivated to pick up the next one. This book follows a young man whose father dies in battle and he’s unexpectedly thrust into the crown, but there’s mutiny and political strife and war and blah. It was pretty interesting and I enjoyed reading about the different political aspects, but overall it was a bit flat. It needed more female characters to be honest. It was good though – if war stories are your thing you’ll probably like this. 3.5 stars

Fanfiction

Change of Heart by nyteride – This is the sequel to the Bulma/Vegeta fanfic I read months ago. This one takes place after the Cell arc and before the Buu arc in Dragonball Z. It was fluffy and cute and convinced me that both Bulma and Vegeta would be terrible romantic partners, therefore they are perfect for each other.

DNFs

Hood by Stephen R. Lawhead – This is a Robin Hood retelling and therefore wasn’t for me. I tried, I tried to keep an open mind, but honestly it bored me to tears. If you like Robin Hood you’ll likely like this, but that story has always been dull to me. Not the book’s fault.

The Moth Diaries by Rachel Klein – This one was a gift to me from an IRL buddy a few years ago and I always feel so bad when I don’t like books that were gifts, but it is what it is. It’s a psychological thriller but the pacing was just too slow for me.

And that’s it! That’s where I’ve been, that’s what I’ve been doing, that’s what I’ve read. I think from this point my posts won’t be “regular” but I’ll definitely be posting again. Next post will be a haul of the books from the last three or four months. Because shock, just because I was in a slump didn’t mean I didn’t stop purchasing books. So look forward to that. Good to be back, peeps.

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