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Category Archives: Top 5 Wednesday

Top 5 bookshelf collectibles

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https://i.imgur.com/XS0XVS1.gifHello, Happy Hump Day! Today’s topic is top collectibles on the bookshelf, whether they be collectible books, decorations, etc. I’m hoping the ones that I picked turn out to be a bit unique. But who knows, I might be totally unoriginal. Onto the things!

If you would like to participate in T5W, you can do so here!

McGonagall’s wand

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I went to Harry Potter world this past October, and I picked up McGonagall’s wand! It stays in its box, because I don’t trust myself not to break it.

The Fullmetal Alchemist pocket watch

…and action figures and staff. My sister got me the pocket watch as a gift one year and I absolutely adore it. While not directly on my bookshelves, it’s on a display shelf right next to them. 3 Oct. Don’t forget.

Globe bookends

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These were a gift from my parents for Christmas two years ago. I had no idea something like this even existed. I almost cried when I got them though. They’re fully functioning – they spin and everything. I. Love. Them.

Sonata Arctica drumstick

Sonata Arctica is one of my favorite bands – I’m particularly a fan of their older stuff. Once upon a time, I went to their concert and was pretty damn close to the front of the stage (another time I was at the front, but that’s a different story). At the end, the drummer threw sticks he had used and yours truly caught one. You can see, it’s all beat up.

Masks

I don’t know what it is, but I really like the aesthetic of these things. I bought them a long time ago, back in 2008 or so, from a store called Earth Bound, which has since closed down, at least in my area. Man, I love these masks.


And that’s it! I don’t have too much on my shelves, but what I do have, I really like. Happy reading!

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Posted by on 04/03/2019 in Books, Top 5 Wednesday

 

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Top 5 books that started out iffy but ended up spiffy

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https://i.imgur.com/XS0XVS1.gifAnd if you can bare with me here, we’ll be done in a jiffy!

Hello, Happy Hump Day! Today’s T5W topic is books I thought I would hate but ended up liking. Problem is, I don’t pick up books I think I would hate. So I’m altering the topic a bit. Today will be books that started out iffy: either books I knew had mixed reviews going in, or books that when I started them, they weren’t really speaking to me, and then ended up spiffy: then I ended up really liking them! So.. a milder form of the topic, I guess?

If you’d like to participate in T5W, you can do so here!


Queen of Shadows by Sarah J Maas

Queen of Shadows (Throne of Glass, #4)

So, this series overall I like pretty decently. It’s not my favorite, but I like it. Going into this one, I had heard it was very divisive among the fan base. Plot and world-expansion wise, it went over well… with some people. And with other people, it basically caused them to drop the series. Well, I read it, and I really liked it. This is probably my favorite one in the series, honestly. I really like the direction the plot went in it, so I’m hoping the next one will be good, too.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Millennium, #1)

I read this back long before I started my blog. At the time, I didn’t read too many long novels (shocker I know) so the size of this one intimidated me. I had also never read a mystery thriller of its scope. And when I started it… the writing dragged at me. I remember struggling through the first hundred and fifty pages or so. But soon after that, the plot picked up and I buzzed through the rest of it in a few days. I really liked this one.

Hyperion by Dan Simmons

Hyperion (Hyperion Cantos, #1)

Same as above here – the writing was dense for me at first and I couldn’t really connect with anything. I picked it up on audio though, and then I was able to fly through it. Once it got to the point where the characters started telling their stories, I was hooked. It just took me a bit to adapt to the premise, I guess? Who knows. I really enjoyed this book though.

The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness

The Knife of Never Letting Go (Chaos Walking, #1)

This book, it was the writing – again! The main character in this book speaks in an accent, and the accent is written out in the book. Since the book is told from his point of view, the words are written out how he would spell them. It definitely took me a few chapters to get into the book because of it, and I didn’t find myself invested until maybe half way through. I’m glad I stuck with it though – this series ended up being one of my all-time favorites.

Twelve Kings of Sharakhai by Bradley P Beaulieu

Twelve Kings in Sharakhai (The Song of the Shattered Sands #1)

This is number one because it’s the most recent case. I started this book back in July or so and got about half way into it. I honestly was rather bored. I can’t even put my finger on why. But since it was a buddy read, instead of DNFing it, I put it on the back burner. My buddy reader did as well. Only in the last week or so did I pick it back up. And man, I don’t know what changed, but I must have been in the mood for it this time around, because I really liked the second half of it. The book, had I forced myself through it last summer, would have gotten a 1 or 2 stars from me. But putting it down and letting myself come back on a fresh start bumped the book up to 3.25 stars. It was solidly entertaining, and I’m glad I gave it that break.


And that’s it! Have you read any of the above? Do you plan to? Lemme know!

 
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Posted by on 03/27/2019 in Books, Top 5 Wednesday

 

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Top 5 Spring Reads

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https://i.imgur.com/XS0XVS1.gifHappy Hump Day! And for those who celebrate it, Happy Holi! We’re having a Holi party at work today and while I don’t celebrate it myself, a bunch of my coworkers do, so there’s gonna be a bunch of food and I’m so excited.

Today’s topic is spring reads, and it’s a bit up to interpretation. So, I’m going with top books I’d like to read this spring. Note this will not include books on my O.W.L. Readathon TBR (which will be up soon). So it’ll basically be books I wanna read in May.

If you’d like to participate in Top 5 Wednesday, you can do so here!

5. The Poppy War by R. F. Kuang

The Poppy War (The Poppy War, #1)I bought this a while ago, and have since added it to my 10 in 2019 list. Considering I should actually, y’know, try to read the books on that list, I want to get to this one. Some people really like to read fantasy during the fall. I really like to read fantasy during the fall! …and the spring! ….and summer and winter. I have no specific fantasy season, man.

 

 

 

 

 

4. Deathless by Catherynne M Valente

Deathless (Leningrad Diptych, #1)Another one on my 10 in 2019 list, it’s one I’ve been eyeing for ages. I’m hoping to love this. It follows Koschei the Deathless, a character in Russian folklore who is akin to devils and witches. Should be goooood!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones

Howl's Moving Castle (Howl's Moving Castle, #1)Yet another on the 10 in 2019 list, I figured I’ll just knock out as many as I can in May. This is the book the movie was based off of, and considering I adore the movie, I decided I want to read the source material. I’m hoping I like this just as much!

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. Saga volume 9 by Brian K. Vaughan

Saga, Vol. 9 (Saga, #9)I’ve fallen behind in Saga! Well, not too far behind. This is the only volume that’s out that I haven’t read. This one will likely come with a reread of volume 8 so I remember what in the world is going on.

 

 

 

 

 

 

1. The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon

The Priory of the Orange TreeAnd this – this is the one I wanna read the most. I bought it the other day in preparation for my book buying ban (which… will also be posted about soon). I want to have some good things to reading during the ban, so I got this book as one of my allotted March purchases to do just that!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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And that’s it! Planning on reading any of the above? Happy reading!

 
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Posted by on 03/20/2019 in Books, Top 5 Wednesday

 

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Top 5 characters that are definitely in Ravenclaw

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https://i.imgur.com/XS0XVS1.gifHello, happy Hump Day!

Today’s T5W topic is characters that embody my Hogwarts house. I’m pretty solidly Ravenclaw so I’m gonna pick characters that are Ravenclaw-y too!

If you’d like to participate in Top 5 Wednesday, you can do so here!

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According to the Harry Potter wiki, traits that Ravenclaws possess are:

  • Intelligence
  • Wit
  • Wisdom
  • Creativity
  • Originality
  • Individuality
  • Acceptance

So with those in mind:

Alise Finbok from The Rain Wild Chronicles by Robin Hobb

City of DragonsAlise is the daughter of a prominent trader who enters a marriage of convenience with a man who is a bit of a dick. But through her marriage contract, Alise is able to journey up the Rain Wild River to lands of the Elderlings, a long-dead people who left nothing but ruins behind. Her goal in life is to catalogue and record every bit of information she can learn about dragons and the Elderlings. A pioneer of knowledge.

 

Tyrion Lannister from A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin

A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, #1)The only Ravenclaw (or Hufflepuff, arguably) in a family of Slytherins, Tyrion is another one that’s very apt to gather knowledge. He’s intelligent and quick-witted. No point going into further detail because, well, pop culture.

 

 

 

 

Winry Rockbell from Fullmetal Alchemist by Hiromu Arakawa

Fullmetal Alchemist, Vol. 5 (Fullmetal Alchemist, #5)I could also see arguments for Gryffindor here, but I think due to Winry’s intelligence and her lack of risk-taking, she’s more of a Ravenclaw. Winry is the Elric Brothers’ childhood friend and automail mechanic. She’s very good at what she does, and she gets rather nerdy and excited when being shown new automail technology. She’s fantastic.

 

 

Karris White Oak from the Lightbringer series by Brent Weeks

The Black Prism (Lightbringer, #1)Karris is one of my favorite characters in the series if not my favorite. She’s always calculating, refining her techniques, predicting opponents’ motivations. And she’s really weirdly poised while doing it all. Karris is classy, and very, very Ravenclawy.

 

 

 

The Fool from the Tawny Man trilogy by Robin Hobb

Golden Fool (Tawny Man, #2)The Fool is the reason why I decided to participate this week. He was the first character to pop into my head when I started brainstorming. He’s creative, he’s refined, he’s intelligent, he’s definitely an individual, he’s accepting and loving, he has a wit that is both funny and mischievous. I think every needs a Fool to be their buddy.

 

 

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And that’s it! You know, it was weird – to compose this list, I just went down through my ‘read’ list on goodreads, paused at each book and picked out a few characters… it was really really easy to be like ‘no, he’s a gryffindor’ or ‘no she’s a slytherin’. Like, it was no problem categorizing them. Harry Potter is so prolific, man.

So what do you think! Agree? Disagree?

 
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Posted by on 03/13/2019 in Books, Top 5 Wednesday

 

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Top 5 books on my TBR

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https://i.imgur.com/XS0XVS1.gifHappy Hump Day!

Today’s topic is books on the top of my TBR! I’ve made a 10 in 2019 list, which are my ‘top’ books to be read this year, but the ones immediately in my future are… not all on that list, hwe hwe. And one of them, I don’t even own yet.

If you’d like to participate in T5W, you can do so here!

5. The Blood Mirror by Brent Weeks

The Blood Mirror (Lightbringer, #4)Fourth book in the Lightbringer series, I’ve been ‘currently reading’ this for months, but I haven’t actually touched it in, well… months. But, I’ve been listening to a lot of TYR lately, which is a band whose music I associate with this series, and it’s getting me in the mood. If you haven’t read this and you don’t mind copious description of boobs, look this one up.

 

 

 

 

 

 

4. The Monster Baru Cormorant by Seth Dickinson

The Monster Baru Cormorant (The Masquerade, #2)This is another one I’ve been ‘currently reading’ for ages. Hell, this was a book I made an exception for in my book ban last year. I started it, got maybe a third of the way through, and got distracted. Such is life. I did really enjoy what I read though, and hope to get back to it soon!

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. Tokyo Ghoul by Sui Ishida

Tokyo Ghoul, Vol. 1 (Tokyo Ghoul, #1)This is the one manga on the list! I’ve actually picked this one up as well, though I haven’t marked it as such. I’m about a third of the way through it and it’ll likely be the first out of all of these that I actually finish. I’m rather enjoying it so far.

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

Dark MatterI’ve been itching for this one recently. My husband borrowed this from me and ended up reading most of it in one sitting. He still has yet to finish it but I’m about out of patience:  I’ll just pick it up and leave his damned bookmark in there. With Crouch’s new book coming out soon, I wanna hop on it!

 

 

 

 

 

 

1. King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo

King of Scars (Nikolai Duology, #1)This is the one. This is the book I wanna read that I don’t own yet… because it’s not out yet! This book comes out on January 29th, and I’m ready, man. I plan to buy it on release day. I thought about pre-ordering, but I’ma go to the bookstore and get it. Immediate gratification and all, y’know. Between now and then, I hope to finish at least one of the above, if not more. But ugh, I’m so pumped.

 

 

 

 

 

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And that’s it! Have you read any of the above? Do you wanna? Wanna buddy read? Happy reading!

 
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Posted by on 01/23/2019 in Books, Top 5 Wednesday

 

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Top 5 disappointing books of 2018

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https://i.imgur.com/XS0XVS1.gifHappy Hump Day!

Today’s topic is most disappointing books of last year. I was originally going to post this shortly after the new year, but when I saw it was to be a t5w topic, I decided to wait. My kingdom for consistent posting material, yeesh. I also chose six, not five. Pbtbt. They’re in no particular order.

If you’d like to participate in Top 5 Wednesday, you can do so here!


The Gray House by Mariam Petrosyan

The Gray HouseThis book had such a neat sounding premise. This book was also my one and only DNF of 2018. I didn’t rate it, because I didn’t get far enough into it that I thought a rating to be fair. I think… I think I got maybe 150 pages into it. I had picked this book up as part of r/Fantasy’s book of the month for October, and I don’t know what it was about it, but I really didn’t get into it at all. I couldn’t tell if it was because I was reading it as an ebook or whether it was the meandering plot. I tend to dislike meandering plots – I want to feel that there’s a point to what I’m reading. Though, occasionally, one will surprise me, which is why I decided to give this book a chance. I even tried out the audiobook for a bit when I felt myself getting bored. And that was really it. This book bored me, and considering it was over 700 pages, I decided to cop out early and save myself the mental drain. Maybe someday I’ll retry this one. Maybe. A physical copy of it might help, who knows.

No rating

Mushishi volume 2 by Yuki Urushibara

Mushishi, Vol. 2I think my problem with this one was that I wasn’t in the right mindset. I picked it up, hoping to get through it so I could hit my TBR goal for the year, so it was one of the last reads of 2018. But, Mushishi isn’t really a series you can ‘just get through’. It’s one of those thinkers, and it was not what my brain wanted, apparently. I found myself skimming a lot of the time and honestly I couldn’t tell you a single thing that happened in it. This one, I will give another try, when I feel like I’m in the mood for it. I liked volume one well enough, so I feel like I could like this as well if I gave it a proper chance.

2.75/5 stars

 

Just Around the Corner by Touko Kawai

Just Around the CornerSpoilers for this manga ahead

Looking back at my rating, I should have rated this book a one star. Why I gave it two is beyond me. It is what it is though. This book made me uncomfortable. It follows a romance between two men, which is well and dandy. But then the one turns up to school the next day to find out that the guy he’s been seeing is his teacher. Ok, teacher/student tropes can be done ok sometimes.

But the plot twist, guys. The plot twist was just. Ugh.

The plot twist was, guy one as lying about his age. Teacher thought he was dating (and sleeping with) a 19 year old. Was he? No. Guy one, turns out he was 17. Age of consent laws vary throughout the world, but I live in the US, so my mindset is very much a harsh ‘HE’S NOT EIGHTEEN RUN AWAY’. So like, that plot twist dropped and I nearly dropped the book. I felt so gray. I picked it back up in hopes that Teacher freaks the eff out and drops guy one like a stone. And he does. So I kept reading, happy that the damned teacher has some sense. But the rest of the book follows guys one as he’s pining over this teacher and how cruel Teacher was for dumping him and how it wasn’t fair and ugh. Mind you, Teacher is totally in the right for going ‘WTF’ and staying away from this kid.

But alas, guess who gets back together by the end of the book. It gave me the creeps. It was slimy. Yuck. I don’t recommend this.

2/5 stars (but should be 1)

A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J Maas

A Court of Frost and Starlight (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #3.1)My complaints about this one match up to basically everyone else’s. It felt like a money-grab. The whole book was about shopping and could have been condensed into a chapter or two. The only relevant part plot-wise happened in three sentences. Yawn.

I believe it was on my anticipated books list last year too, which is why it was such a big let down for me.

3/5 stars

 

 

 

 

Gravitation by Maki Murakami

Gravitation, Volume 01I read this series back in high school (and yes, the whole series is on this list), and I remembered really liking it. This goes to show you that tastes change, and some things just don’t age well at all. The romance in this, while a gay romance, was like.. homophobic. I was reading a yaoi with homophobia in it. My gosh. Jokes that would have been ‘funny’ 13 years ago in this series really don’t stand the test of time, and that’s unfortunate. I should have just let this series lie, and kept it as a fond memory of my teenage years. But I had to go and stick my foot in it and rack up all these grimy memories to go along with it. Sigh.

Overall 2.25/5 stars

 

Wildest Dreams by Kristen Ashley

Wildest Dreams (Fantasyland, #1)This is my one and only one star book of the year! Technically it was a 1.5, because I was able to finish it. I only give 1 stars to books that I DNF out of hate (not out of boredom like above). This book wins the ‘most unhealthy relationship dynamic’ award, beating out the one in Gravitation by a long, long long shot.

At this point, I’ve repressed most of this book in my memory, except that the main character says ‘holy moly’ way too effing much and that the love interest is the most punchable character I’ve ever come across.

It’s such a shame though. I picked this up hoping to love it. I wanted to love it. I kept trying to defend it against myself as I read, but eventually it got to the point where I just couldn’t. It was… disappointing. :/

1.5/5 stars

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And that’s it! Did you read any of the above? Did you like them? Tell me what about them that you liked that I totally missed. Happy reading!

 
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Posted by on 01/16/2019 in Books, Top 5 Wednesday

 

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2019 Reading Goals

2018 Reading Resolutions.png

Welcome to the future! Time for goals! This also happens to be today’s Top 5 Wednesday topic, so if you’d like to participate in that, you can do so here! I have… way more than five. We’re just gonna roll with it.

Book and blog related:

  • Read 50 books

I say fifty, but that’s really just a minimum. Ideally I’d like to read 80 or 100, but I’ll definitely be satisfied with 50 as well. Goodreads’ color this year is a dark purple and it’s nice and weird. If you’d like to add me on goodreads, do it!

I’ve made one of these lists every year since 2016 – I’ve never finished it. I WANNA. AUGH.

  • Keep book purchases around 4-5 books per month

I figure if I do this and then read 80, then I’ll knock my TBR down. I set my goal to 50, but I feel like 80 is attainable.

  • Go on a 2 to 3 month buying ban

I’ve done this the last two years in a row, for more like 4 or so months, successfully, and it has really helped with the physical TBR count. I want to do it again this year, but do it in the late winter or spring, instead of doing it in fall, because all the good books come out in fall 😛

  • Reduce physical TBR to 250 books. It currently sits at 283.

I hit my 270 goal… and then I added in all the books from my haul and popped it back up, ahahahaha. As stated above, this one really depends on me keeping my buying in check. Purging will also help out here, as will the buying ban!

There are three months left in this – right now I’m reaaaaally close to a bingo. So, I think this one will end well.

  • Post monthly book hauls

I did seasonal book hauls last year, and I feel like I got them lined up wrong. So this month it’ll go back to monthly, but hopefully will only contain 4-5 books each time.

  • Maintain a S-W-S posting schedule

I did this goal last year as well and succeeded in it. There will be slight changes, like during November if I do Nanowrimo or in December during Blogmas, but overall it should be roughly this pattern.

  • Keep track of statistics

In wrap ups and stuff, I really like seeing stats that people will talk about – page count, genre count, author stuff, etc. I wanna keep track of it, too.

Personal related:

  • Make no personal resolutions except this resolution

For some reason, I do really well on reading goals, but listing things as personal goals ends up as self-sabotage. So, this year I’m not setting any. Sure, I have things I wanna do, but if I don’t make it ‘official’, the likelihood of me actually accomplishing it is, well, higher. Haha.


There’s also the general goal of ‘stay alive’ but y’know, that’s kind of a given. Wish me luck! Happy reading!

 
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Posted by on 01/02/2019 in Books, Top 5 Wednesday

 

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