Blogmas 2020 has arrived! | Tentative posting schedule

It’s here, it’s here! Blogmas has begun!

But what, you say? It’s only November 21st? You’re right! But I’m being nuts this year and starting Blogmas today!

Why? Well, because I normally post on Saturdays, Sundays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays, aaaand next week has Thanksgiving on Thursday and I make a special post for that as well. So between now and December first, the “normal” start of Blogmas, I’d be posting seven out of ten days anyways. So I figured I’m gonna start the bloggy cheer early this year!

I’m also planning on doing all those end-of-year posts between after Christmas and into the beginning of January, meaning I’ll be going for a while after the normal date range as well.

So from today until January 7th, you’ll see a post from me every day!

The only exception being Christmas Day. I’m giving myself that day off because it’s Christmas, man.

This is my tentative posting schedule. Everything is subject to change, but as of right now, this is what I’m leaning towards. If you’re doing Blogmas as well, feel free to swipe ideas:

November:

  • 21 – This post!
  • 22 – Nanowrimo update 3
  • 23 – Thanksgiving decorations
  • 24 – Top 10 Tuesday, Thanksgiving edition
  • 25 – Top 5 Wednesday, “No Thanks”
  • 26 – Thanksgiving Day Book Tag
  • 27 – TIME TO GET FESTIVE, fall bucketlist check-in/holiday bucketlist
  • 28 – November favorites
  • 29 – Nanowrimo week 4
  • 30 – November wrap up

December:

  • 1 – Nanowrimo results
  • 2 – Top 5 Wednesday, TBD
  • 3 – December currently reading
  • 4 – Book haul fate
  • 5 – Christmas decorations 2020
  • 6 – Christmas movies to-be-watched
  • 7 – Music Monday, Christmas edition
  • 8 – Top 10 Tuesday, Holiday/Seasonal edition
  • 9 – Top 5 Wednesday, TBD
  • 10 – Blogmas/vlogmas faves and shoutouts
  • 11 – Christmas cracker book tag
  • 12 – Unfinished series/series I won’t finish 2020
  • 13 – 12 Days of Christmas book tag
  • 14 – Christmas stuffing recipe
  • 15 – Top 10 Tuesday, books on my winter TBR/book buying ban is over!
  • 16 – Top 5 Wednesday, TBD
  • 17 – Baking cookies
  • 18 – Christmas book blogger tag
  • 19 – Coffee mug collection 2020
  • 20 – Christmas breakfast egg bake recipe
  • 21 – Fantasy bingo update
  • 22 – Top 10 Tuesday, Books I hope Santa brings
  • 23 – Top 5 Wednesday, TBD
  • 24 – Christmas Eve book tag
  • 25 – Merry Christmas! No post from me today
  • 26 – December favorites
  • 27 – 10 in 2021
  • 28 – December book haul
  • 29 – New year’s eve book tag
  • 30 – Top 5 Wednesday, books I didn’t get to in 2020
  • 31 – December wrap up

January:

  • 1 – 2020: A year in review
  • 2 – Reading resolutions 2021
  • 3 – Bottom books of 2020
  • 4 – Music Monday
  • 5 – Top 10 Tuesday, Top books of 2020
  • 6 – Top 5 Wednesday, TBD
  • 7 – Bookshelf tour 2021

And that will be it – my posting schedule (give or take) for the next month in a half. I will be pre-writing a lot of it, but some posts obviously I won’t be able to. I might end up swapping out some of these with book blabbers, should anything really grip me. I don’t plan blabbers ahead of time as I don’t know which books will inspire them. But don’t be surprised if a few pop up! Also, those ‘TBD’s on the Top 5 Wednesday are there because the prompts have not been posted yet. When they are, I’ll either do them if I like them or sub them out for some other post if I don’t. Either way, there will be a post.

My everyday posting will end as I said on Jan 7th, that’ll give me a day of break, and then that weekend, I’ll resume my normal Sat-Sun-Tues-Wed schedule, starting with my January currently reading and a holiday bucketlist check-in post, followed by 2021 Anticipated Reads and a Top 5 Wednesday! And then after that I need to start planning again because I’ll be out of ideas!

This is my fifth year doing Blogmas, and it’s always so much fun. If you’re doing it this year, please let me know. I’d love to follow along on your posts!

Happy Blogmas everyone! I’M SO PUMPED.

Nanowrimo week 2 update!

We’ve reached the half way point in Nanowrimo, and this is my progress so far, as of last night!

As you can see, I’m killing it if I do say so myself. Is it any good? No! But it’s words. I’ll make it good later. This is the third book I’ve written set in the same world and while I liked the other two a lot I think this one is by far my favorite, so I’m happy about it.

Today my plan is to write 5k words, putting me at 45k. Then I plan on finishing up the last 5k during this week so I can be done before the 21st, which is when I’m starting blogmas this year. My goal is to only have one time consuming project going at a time. Pbtbt.

If you’re participating, lemme know how you’re doing! Happy writing!

End of Year Book Tag!

Happy Saturday! I did this tag last year as well but it’s a new year, sooooo doing it again! I wasn’t tagged! Wah!

Are there any books you started this year that you need to finish?

The Maze Runner by James Dashner – I started this one a couple weeks ago, but it’s fallen by the wayside because of buddy reads I’m in. I’ll finish it though!

Do you have an autumnal book to transition into the end of the year?

I hate the word ‘autumnal’.

I choose Vita Nostra by Marina and Sergey Dyachenko – I’m currently buddy reading this with my irl buddies Katy @Bookbinderway and Amanda @LadyCorvinous. So far I’m really digging this, and I think the other two are as well. It’s not necessarily a book that takes place during fall, but it has ‘fall vibes’ if that makes sense.

Is there a new release you’re still waiting for?

I don’t think so. Aside from being on a ban, preventing me from buying anything anyways, I don’t believe any of my anticipated releases for this half of the year have still to come out. Or if they do, it’s obvious it wasn’t that anticipated. There’s one manga that’s come out since going on my ban that I definitely wanna pick up as soon as the ban is over, so that’s the closest I can get to answering this question.

What are three books you want to read before the end of the year?

Renegade’s Magic by Robin Hobb and Serpent & Dove by Shelby Mahurin are two buddy reads I have coming up, so I’ll definitely be getting to them. Slade House by David Mitchell is… well, it’s one of the shortest books I own, and I’m like 17 books away from my TBR goal for the year, so… short books are gonna make up a lot of my reading for the rest of the year. Hwe hwe. Slade House gives me spooky vibes too so I’m hoping it’ll be good for fall-y season.

Is there a book you think could still shock you and become your favourite book of the year?

Honestly Vita Nostra, mentioned above, might just do it. I wasn’t expecting to love it but it’s surprised me so far. We’ll see how the ending is – it’s gonna make or break it.

Have you already started making reading plans for 2021?

Tentative ones, yes (This is the exact same phrasing I used to answer this last year).

If I achieve my TBR goal, I’ll set another, lower one. I also plan on making a manga TBR goal, and a buying-restriction of some kind. Not an outright ban but maybe like a ‘5 books a month’ thing or something. I’m not quite sure yet.

~~~

And that’s it! If you’d like to do this tag, consider yourself tagged!

 

Best Books of the Year (so far!) and 2020 Reading Stats

top books 2017

Happy day! Today I wanna talk about all my favorite books that I’ve read so far this year! And after that, I wanna look a bit at my reading stats, as I’ve been keeping track of them as one of my 2020 Reading Goals.

I have nine books to talk about today – all of them got at least a 4.5 star rating from me, and over half got a five!

For those unfamiliar with my rating system, to get a five stars from me, the book has to be perfect to me. Objectively it can have flaws but to me, it’s the bees knees. Basically I have to read it and think ‘man this is a new all-time favorite’. So a 4.5 star book is still a fantastic book, and while I consider it a favorite of the year, it might not quite be an ‘all-time’ favorite. So usually I tend to only have a handful of five star books a year. But so far this year I already have quite a few – it’s a good year! These are ordered from least-most-favorite to most-most-favorite.


~~~ ~~~ ~~~

All You Need Is Kill

All You Need is Kill by Takeshi Obata4.5 stars – This is a one-shot manga about a man who gets stuck in a time loop while fighting alien invaders. Sound familiar? This is the source material of the Tom Cruise movie, Edge of Tomorrow. The movie took some liberties for sure, but it’s pretty entertaining. This manga though, I loved it. It’s so gritty, but has hints of humor at the same time. It conveys the emotional state of the main character as he lives the same day over and over and over and over, each time knowing he’s going to die and restart again. It’s a good psychological book, and has plenty of action and suspense as well. And it’s short! One volume!

Pride and Prejudice

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen4.5 stars – I know, I know, I’m late to this one. I have a weird aversion to classics, what can I say (Though when I do read them I tend to actually like them, so, like, what gives). I buddy read this book early this year with a couple friends, one of whom has read this book a million times and is an all-time favorite of hers, and the other who had attempted to read it a couple times and never had finished. So we were all at different levels of exposure, so it was neat to see how each of us reacted differently to the story. Me, personally, I ended up taking pictures of passages, scribbling on the pictures, and sending them to the friend that’d read the book a million times. Didn’t wanna spoil the other friend or I would have sent to her too. If you’re interested, here is the post I made with all my scribbles. But yeah I ended up really, really liking this book, and I’m kinda mad I put it off for so long.

A Natural History of Dragons (The Memoirs of Lady Trent, #1)

A Natural History of Dragons by Marie Brennan4.5 stars – I picked this book up back in April, and I still think about it almost every day. There’s just something about it. This book follows the fantasy-equivalent of a Victorian era woman as she goes on a research exploration to study and document dragons. It has sketches in the book that she draws, and tells the narrative from her point of view, as if you’re reading her memoir. It has a lot of charm and wit, along with some fascinating illustrations, some neat plot twists, and some memorable characters. I seriously loved this one.

An Absolutely Remarkable Thing (An Absolutely Remarkable Thing #1)

An Absolutely Remarkable Thing by Hank Green4.75 stars – I’m late on this one too, I know. It was a big thing a couple years ago when it first came out. But in my mind for some reason I had categorized it as something I wouldn’t be interested in. Why, I don’t know. The hype? I don’t knowwww. But honestly, this book is right up my alley. It contains one of my favorite tropes: the big dumb object. You know, when something weird just appears, and nobody knows where it came from or what it is. The object itself may or may not be dumb, but the trope is the trope. But I really loved this – I liked how the main character was so incredibly human. Her flaws – the way she handled relationships, the way the fame got to her head after she told herself it wouldn’t – was all so incredibly believable. It was like a character study, almost. It’s so incredibly good.

I Want to Eat Your Pancreas

I Want to Eat Your Pancreas by Yoru Sumino5 stars – This manga made me feel very distinctly, consciously mortal, and I didn’t like it. But that also made me love the book. This manga is a one-shot, and follows a teenage boy who befriends a teenage girl with terminal pancreatic cancer. The girl though, is determined to live her life while she can, and is always taking an almost dead-pan humor take on her situation, like saying things like ‘we should go do this before I die and worms eat me’ and stuff like that. It’s morbid, funny, and heartbreaking all in one. I still get the happysads when I think about this one.

Interview with the Vampire (The Vampire Chronicles, #1)

Interview With the Vampire by Anne Rice5 stars – This book has been on my radar since I was about fifteen years old. I remember borrowing it from a friend and trying to read it, then got distracted about a third of the way through and never finishing. So when I picked it back up, I had it in my head that I was going to get stuck in a similar fashion. But then it surprised me with its atmosphere and tone. This book is seductive, for lack of a better word. It pulled me right in and kept me there, and I enjoyed every page.

Our Dining Table

Our Dining Table by Mita Ori5 stars – This is a oneshot manga, following a young man who has trouble eating in front of others and another young man who wants to learn how to cook for his younger brother. It’s a fluffy, sweet romance, and it melted my heart. It deals with the issues around the main character’s food issues, and also touches on topics relating to adoption, absentee parenting, and more. It’s really wholesome and really nice.

If We Were Villains

If We Were Villains by M. L. Rio5 stars – This is officially my favorite novel of 2020 so far. And honestly it’s very outside my usual genre of fantasy. This is a literary suspense novel following a group of college students studying Shakespeare at a liberal arts college. The writing is lyrical, sprinkled with Shakespearean verse and at times paralleling its themes. This book really knocked my socks off. Originally, I had given it a 4.5 – I knew I loved it, but I didn’t think it would be an all-time fave. But after sitting on it for a month and not going a single day without thinking of it at least once, I just had to bring it up to a five. This book was really something.

Black Butler, Vol. 1 (Black Butler, #1)

Black Butler by Yana Toboso5 stars – For anyone even remotely following my blog this should really come as no surprise, because since I started reading it I have not shut up about it. I technically cheated by picking a series as my ‘favorite book so far’, well, favorite manga – favorite read – you know what I mean. But with manga it’s really hard to separate the story out into individual volumes. It’s just one story – it’s one entity. And Black Butler, man. Individual volumes rated I think at the lowest 3.5 stars for one volume, and then many 4 or 4.5, and then more a full 5 stars. Overall though, this series in my opinion is five stars. It’s just fantastic and I cannot recommend it enough.

It follows a thirteen year old boy who sells his soul to a devil, bent on gaining the means necessary to take revenge after his family was slaughtered in their homes and he was taken and tortured by the same people. The story is set in Victorian England, and the boy’s father was an earl of the queen. The boy inherits the title, and using his demon – posing as a butler of the family – the boy works to get closer to those who wronged him.

This series has action, comedy (weirdly a lot of comedy), horror, suspense, thrills, sads, all of it. It literally has a bit of everything, and I cannot understate how much I love this. It’s really the best thing I’ve read all year, especially with the latest arc in the most recent volumes. It shook me to my bones, man. It’s so fantastic.

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And that’s all of my favorite books! I’m actually rather proud of myself for actually ranking them for once. Onto the stats!


Total books read: 136

  • Manga: 114
  • Novels: 17
  • Novellas: 2
  • Anthologies: 1
  • Graphic novels: 1

Breakdown by….

Genre:

  • Literary fiction: 3
  • Science fiction: 6
  • Fantasy: 25
  • Romance: 32
  • Horror: 2
  • Magical realism: 2
  • Shojo: 30
  • Slice of Life: 3
  • Historical Fantasy: 29
  • Humor: 3
  • Classic: 1

Age Group:

  • Adult: 14
  • Young Adult: 5
  • Kids/picture books: 1
  • New Adult: 1
  • Manga – Teen(13+): 34
  • Manga – Older Teen(16+): 68
  • Manga – Mature(18+): 13

TBR:

  • 85 read from books added to TBR this year
  • 17 read from books already existing on TBR before 2020
  • 34 read from books borrowed from friends/services/library
  • 4 rereads

Month:

  • Jan: 14 books – 3749 pages
  • Feb: 7 books – 2078 pages
  • Mar: 32 books – 8031 pages
  • Apr: 39 books – 7778 pages
  • May: 22 books – 4661 pages
  • June: 19 books – 5284 pages
  • July (so far): 2 books – 550 pages

Rating:

  • 1 star: 1 (DNF’d)
  • 2 stars: 2
  • 2.5 stars: 1
  • 3 stars: 8
  • 3.5 stars: 33
  • 3.75 stars: 13
  • 4 stars: 42
  • 4.25 stars: 4
  • 4.5 stars: 21
  • 4.75 stars: 1
  • 5 stars: 10

Avg rating: 3.9

Author gender:

  • Male: 16
  • Female: 119
  • Unknown: 1

Author country:

  • United States: 20
  • United Kingdom: 1
  • Japan: 112
  • South Korea: 3

Diversity:

  • Race: 64
  • LGBTQIA: 5
  • Author: 6
  • Combo of more than one diversity (including race, lgbt+, mental illness, disability, author, chronic illness and ownvoices): 49
  • None: 12

And that’s it! I’m gonna save all the fancy bar graphs and pie charts until the end of the year when all of the books from 2020 are present and accounted for. That being said, my end of year faves may contain totally different books! There’s still just under half a year to go. All of these books could totally get swept away by even better books, who knows!

If you read all of this, thank you so much, I really appreciate it! And if you’ve read any of the above or have been keeping stats of your own, lemme know! Happy reading!

 

 

The Mid-Year Freakout Book Tag | ’20

Book Tag

Hi! I and the entire book internet has been doing this tag for a few years now, so you know the drill. Wasn’t officially tagged, but whatevs.

This tag was made by Chami and Ely Jayne!

Best book I’ve read so far

Black Butler, Vol. 1 (Black Butler, #1)

Black Butler by Yana Toboso – Kinda cheating here because I picked an entire series instead of a single book, but man. One of my best friends had been trying to get me into it for years. I’m so mad I waited so long. This series is fantastic. It’s set in Victorian era England, and follows a thirteen year old boy who makes a deal with a devil after his family is slaughtered and vows to get revenge. The boy’s father up until that point had been an earl, so the boy has to take over the title. The devil he makes a deal with parades as his butler.

This series seriously has it all: action, comedy, tragedy, horror, suspense, fluff. All of it! It’s so. good.

Best sequel I’ve read so far

Bloodwitch (The Witchlands, #3)

Bloodwitch by Susan Dennard – This is the third book in the Witchlands trilogy and I think it’s the best one yet. So much character development!

New release I haven’t read yet but want to

Burn

Burn by Patrick Ness – I’ve been to like three different bookstores looking for this and nobody seems to have it in stock. I’m going to order it here pretty soon. It’s set in 1957 Washington state, and follows a family that hires a dragon to help them with their farm. Interesting, no?

Most anticipated release for the second half of the year

I made a whole post about this a couple weeks ago – go look-it :”D

Biggest disappointment

That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime, Vol. 1 (Light Novel)

That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime vol 1 by Fuse – This is the light novel, where the anime was adapted from. I watched the anime and though the first half of the first season at least was pretty decent. So considering it was taken right from this, I thought I’d like this too. Well, no.

This light novel gives a lot more insight to the main character’s thoughts. And usually that’d be great, but it’s not so great if the person whose head your in is just thinking about ladies’ boobs and butts and hips all the time and taking advantage of the fact that he’s a slime to get closer in contact with them than he normally would be able to if he was human, because nobody thinks a slime would think that way. Well, they would be wrong.

My first and only DNF of the year so far.

Biggest surprise

Our Dining Table

Our Dining Table by Mito Ori – I didn’t think I’d dislike this, but this is a fluff one-shot, so I didn’t expect to totally fall for it like I did, either. This is a fluffy romance between a guy who has trouble eating in front of other people, and a guy who wants help learning to cook a meal for his little brother. It is so flippin cute.

Favorite new author (debut or new to me)

If We Were Villains

M. L. Rio, who wrote If We Were Villains – The narration in this is so well written, as is the infusion of Shakespearean verse. So is the tone, it’s so well maintained. Seriously I loved everything about this book and I’ll read basically anything else this author puts out.

Newest favorite character

Black Butler, Vol. 3

Probably Sebastian from Black Butler. He’s the devil butler I mentioned above, and what I like so much about him is he’s so unassuming. He plays his role as butler really well, so well that sometimes you forget he’s evil and is just waiting for his thirteen year old charge to die so he can eat his soul.

But every so often, he slips, you’re reminded of exactly what he is.

Book that made me cry

I Want to Eat Your Pancreas

I Want to Eat Your Pancreas by Yoru Sumino – Man, I knew going into this that I was probably gonna cry. This story is about a boy who befriends a girl, and only after finds out she has terminal pancreatic cancer. So yeah, I knew I was gonna be sad. BUT MAN.

Book that made me happy

Kakuriyo: Bed & Breakfast for Spirits, Vol. 1 (Kakuriyo: Bed & Breakfast for Spirits, #1)

Kakuriyo: Bed & Breakfast for Spirits by Waco Ioka – This was such a pleasant manga. I’ve written a full review on it and have said it a million times now, but it seriously reminds me of Spirited Away. It’s so neat!

Favorite book to film adaptation I saw this year

I don’t think I’ve seen any…. I don’t think. I know I went to the theater a couple times back in January of February but I cannot for the life of me remember what I saw.

Favorite review I’ve written this year

Probably this one, because it’s literally the only one I’ve written so far.

Most beautiful book I’ve bought so far this year (or received)

They’re manga! These volumes of Demon Slayer I think are gorgeous. They’re just so vibrant and colorful!

Books I need to read by the end of the year

Everything still remaining on my 10 in 2020 list. I think there are five or six? I really need to get on it!


And that’s it! I know most people have already done this tag, but if you haven’t and you’d like to do it, consider yourself tagged!

2020 Anticipated Releases! #2| Top Ten Tuesday

Anticipated Releases
Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by ThatArtsyReaderGirl!

Happy Tuesday! This week’s topic lines up perfectly with a post I do semi-annually anyways, which is anticipated releases! I made one of these posts back in January too, in case you’re interested.

This is what I’m lookin forward to for the rest of the year. I don’t have ten but I have enough:

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Malorie (Bird Box, #2)

Tentative release: July 21st

Malorie by Josh Malerman – I read Bird Box last year and really enjoyed it. The movie was decent too. But with the way the first book ended, it made me really curious what happened next! So I’m pumped about it.

Goodreads synopsis of Bird Box: Something is out there, something terrifying that must not be seen. One glimpse of it, and a person is driven to deadly violence. No one knows what it is or where it came from.

Five years after it began, a handful of scattered survivors remains, including Malorie and her two young children. Living in an abandoned house near the river, she has dreamed of fleeing to a place where they might be safe. Now that the boy and girl are four, it’s time to go, but the journey ahead will be terrifying: twenty miles downriver in a rowboat—blindfolded—with nothing to rely on but her wits and the children’s trained ears. One wrong choice and they will die. Something is following them all the while, but is it man, animal, or monster?

A Beautifully Foolish Endeavor (An Absolutely Remarkable Thing, #2)

Tentative release: July 7th

A Beautifully Foolish Endeavor by Hank Green – I was a late-comer to the first book in this series, An Absolutely Remarkable Thing, but I ended up really enjoying it. This one picks up where the first left off and, again, I’m pumped for it.

Goodreads synopsis of An Absolutely Remarkable Thing: The Carls just appeared.

Roaming through New York City at three a.m., twenty-three-year-old April May stumbles across a giant sculpture. Delighted by its appearance and craftsmanship–like a ten-foot-tall Transformer wearing a suit of samurai armor–April and her best friend, Andy, make a video with it, which Andy uploads to YouTube. The next day, April wakes up to a viral video and a new life. News quickly spreads that there are Carls in dozens of cities around the world–from Beijing to Buenos Aires–and April, as their first documentarian, finds herself at the center of an intense international media spotlight.

Seizing the opportunity to make her mark on the world, April now has to deal with the consequences her new particular brand of fame has on her relationships, her safety, and her own identity. And all eyes are on April to figure out not just what the Carls are, but what they want from us.

Black Butler, Vol. 29

Tentative release: Aug 18th

Black Butler vol 29 by Yana Toboso – I binged this series over the last few months and I am obsessed. It’s funny, it’s action-packed, it’s shocking, and heart stringy, it’s got everything, man. I am so, so very excited for this one.

Goodreads synopsis of volume 1: In the Victorian ages of London The Earl of the Phantomhive house, Ciel Phantomhive, needs to get his revenge on those who had humiliated him and destroyed what he loved. Not being able to do it alone he sells his soul to a demon he names Sebastian Michaelis. Now working as his butler, Sebastian must help the Earl Phantomhive in this suspenseful, exciting, thriller manga.

A Deadly Education (Scholomance, #1)

Tentative release: Sept 29th

A Deadly Education by Naomi Novik – Honestly I have zero idea what this is about, and I wanna keep it that way. It’s on my most anticipated because it’s by Naomi Novik, the author of the Temeraire series, Uprooted and Spinning Silver. I’ve loved everything I’ve read by her, so I’m pretty sure I’m gonna love this too. And here’s the synopsis I didn’t actually read myself:

Goodreads synopsis: A Deadly Education is set at Scholomance, a school for the magically gifted where failure means certain death (for real) — until one girl, El, begins to unlock its many secrets. There are no teachers, no holidays, and no friendships, save strategic ones. Survival is more important than any letter grade, for the school won’t allow its students to leave until they graduate… or die! The rules are deceptively simple: Don’t walk the halls alone. And beware of the monsters who lurk everywhere. El is uniquely prepared for the school’s dangers. She may be without allies, but she possesses a dark power strong enough to level mountains and wipe out millions. It would be easy enough for El to defeat the monsters that prowl the school. The problem? Her powerful dark magic might also kill all the other students.

Piranesi

Tentative release: Sept 15th

Piranesi by Susanna Clarke – This is the author of the well-known Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, which I… own, have started, and haven’t finished. hyuck. The synopsis of this one sounds super interesting though so I think I’m gonna try to read it.

Goodread synopsis: Piranesi’s house is no ordinary building: its rooms are infinite, its corridors endless, its walls are lined with thousands upon thousands of statues, each one different from all the others. Within the labyrinth of halls an ocean is imprisoned; waves thunder up staircases, rooms are flooded in an instant. But Piranesi is not afraid; he understands the tides as he understands the pattern of the labyrinth itself. He lives to explore the house.

There is one other person in the house-a man called The Other, who visits Piranesi twice a week and asks for help with research into A Great and Secret Knowledge. But as Piranesi explores, evidence emerges of another person, and a terrible truth begins to unravel, revealing a world beyond the one Piranesi has always known.

Wotakoi: Love is Hard for Otaku, Vol. 4

Tentative release: Oct 13th

Wotakoi: Love is Hard for Otaku vol 4 by Fujita – Maaaan I’ve been waiting for this one for like a year and a half, two years, something like that. Wotakoi ended up being one of my favorite books of 2019 (or 2018, I can’t remember how long it’s been) and I’ve been pining for the next volume. It’s just so nice and refreshing and pleasant!

Goodreads synopsis of volume 1: Narumi and Hirotaka are, by all appearances, a power couple. They’re young, good-looking professionals. But they have secrets from everyone but each other: They’re serious geeks! Narumi is a fujoshi, and Hirotaka’s a hardcore gamer. Their sweet, awkward love story started life as a webcomic before becoming a full-blown manga series by popular demand

The Tyrant Baru Cormorant (The Masquerade, #3)

Tentative release: Aug 11th

The Tyrant Baru Cormorant by Seth Dickinson – This is probably the one I’m looking forward to the most. I read Traitor and Monster, the first two books in the series, and loved them. This latest one, Tyrant, I have high hopes for. Maaaan I’m gonna get this on release day, I’m gonna I’m gonna. I’m so pumped!

Goodreads synopsis for The Traitor Baru Cormorant: Tomorrow, on the beach, Baru Cormorant will look up from the sand of her home and see red sails on the horizon.

The Empire of Masks is coming, armed with coin and ink, doctrine and compass, soap and lies. They’ll conquer Baru’s island, rewrite her culture, criminalize her customs, and dispose of one of her fathers. But Baru is patient. She’ll swallow her hate, prove her talent, and join the Masquerade. She will learn the secrets of empire. She’ll be exactly what they need. And she’ll claw her way high enough up the rungs of power to set her people free.

In a final test of her loyalty, the Masquerade will send Baru to bring order to distant Aurdwynn, a snakepit of rebels, informants, and seditious dukes. Aurdwynn kills everyone who tries to rule it. To survive, Baru will need to untangle this land’s intricate web of treachery – and conceal her attraction to the dangerously fascinating Duchess Tain Hu.

But Baru is a savant in games of power, as ruthless in her tactics as she is fixated on her goals. In the calculus of her schemes, all ledgers must be balanced, and the price of liberation paid in full.

~~~

And that’s it! These books I see myself definitely buying shortly after release if not exactly on release day. I think the only exception is Piranesi, but that’s only because it’s a new book and not a sequel or by an author that’s an auto-buy. But even then, I’ll get there eventually.

If you’re excited about any of these, or if you’ve got releases you think would be up my alley, lemme know! Happy reading!

Reading Goals 2020! | Mid-year check-in

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It’s officially the time of year where does their mid-year posts: check-ins, best/work books so far, etc, and I’m rather pumped for it. I love these kinds of posts, I get so many good recommendations! (PS so if you post these kinds of these and you don’t see me in there in your posts already, please link them and I’ll go lookie)

So, January 2nd of this year, I posted a bunch Reading Goals. This is my progress on them so far:

  • Read 50 books

I’ve actually increased this to 100 books, since I hit it really fast. I’ve been on a manga kick and that really helped. Currently I’m at 132 books read (the majority manga) so I can say both this goal and the updated one are complete.

  • Maintain a consistent posting schedule

At the time of posting, my schedule was Saturday-Sunday-Wednesday. Right now it’s Saturday-Sunday-Tuesday, and I keep it up most of the time. I tend to miss one or two posts per month, but overall I think I’m doing okay, mostly consistent. So considering I still have six months to crash and burn, I’ll say this one is in progress.

  • Keep track of reading statistics

So… I’ve noticed a trend. My goal was to keep track of statistics as I read the books, but I tend to just binge-add fifty or sixty books at a time. So right now, it’s been a while since I’ve updated my stats. But I will do so by the time I post about them. So this also gets a solid in progress.

  • Reduce physical TBR to 200

This one took a bit of an interesting turn: When I made this goal, I had 252 books on my physical TBR. That included fiction and nonfiction. The problem is, I read nonfiction…. sometimes. So I decided to split my nonfiction books to its own TBR. So remaining, I have 236 unread fiction books. Nonfiction honestly I’m not too worried about, because I own so little of it and I read it so seldom. So from this point I’m going to focus on getting my unread fiction down to under 200 books. Cheating? Yes. Pbtbtbt. In progress


And that’s it! So far I haven’t horrendously failed any so I’m doing pretty well I think. Lemme know how you’re doing! And like I said if you post mid-year-y posts, do link me, I wanna see.

Happy reading!

Fantasy Bingo 2020-21 | Update 1

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It’s June now! Back in April, Fantasy Bingo 2020 began. It’s a year-long reading bingo hosted by reddit’s r/Fantasy. If you’re interested in participating (You can start whenever and retroactively add books read after April 1st of this year) check out the details here.

This is the progress I’ve made so far. Books are subject to move around if I find a better book to go there.

So I’ve read six fantasy novels since April 1st, and luckily all of them counted for at least one category! So far, so good!

If you’re participating in Fantasy Bingo, do let me know! Happy reading!

OWLs Magical Readathon is finished! | April Wrap Up

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Hello! This April, I was participating in the OWLs portion of the Magical Readathon. I made my announcement post about it towards the end of the March, where I decided I was going to go after the career of Magizoologist and complete the Dragon Tamer training.

Well, in both of those I succeeded. So what I’m gonna do is go over my OWLs books first, then I will go over the rest of what I read in April. So if you’re only interested in the first bit, there will be a nice bold header to let you know you’ve made it to the end of the good bit.

Magizoologist Prompts

Care of Magical Creatures: Hippogriffs – creature with a beak on the cover

Charms: Lumos Maxima – white cover

Herbology: Mimbulus Mimbletonia – title starts with M

Potions: Shrinking Solution – book under 150 pages

Dragon Tamer Training: A book containing dragons

OWLs Books

An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson – Care of Magical Creatures – This book went the same way for me that a lot of young adult fantasy romance books do: That I liked it well enough for what it was, but I didn’t love it. Now, this isn’t me knocking ya: there are a ton of books that I do love, but recently this has been the pattern. What I did love though was the whimsical way that the author wrote. I definitely wanna pick up her newer book because of this. 3.75 stars

Pandora Hearts vol 1 by Jun Mochizuki – Charms – This one really through me for a loop. For some reason – whether by the name or the cover – I thought it was a romance. It was not a romance. Honestly it’s more of a fantasy horror. That surprising genre aside, I did end up really liking this one. It deals with a realm that’s… almost like an underworld but not quite. It’s really cool, and I definitely plan on continuing this one as soon as I can get a hold of more issues. 4 stars

Model vol 1 by Lee So-Young – Herbology – This was technically a re-read for me, but the last time I read it was about 2006, so it was basically brand new. This follows a young woman when her friend brings someone from a bar to her house, passed out drunk, and leaves him there in her care. While he’s sleeping, she notices his beauty and decides to paint his portrait. Well, turns out he’s a vampire. I gotta tell ya, this came out in the height of the vampire romance genre trope and it falls pretty heavily into it. It was still enjoyable enough though for what it was, and with a dose of nostalgia added in, I found myself liking it. 3 stars

I Hate Fairyland vol 1 by Skottie Young – Potions – This one unfortunately was a bit of a let down. I picked this up due to the hype, which was mistake number one. It’s about a young girl who gets trapped in Fairy Land… and then never gets out. Forty years later, she has the mind of a grumpy adult and the body of an eight year old. This is supposed to be a comedy – brutal, gory, and full of bubble gum and rainbows. But personally I found it kinda too boring. But hey, I could see why someone would like it. Just not for me. I didn’t hate it though, I was rather neutral. 3 stars

A Natural History of Dragons: A Memoir by Lady Trent by Marie BrennanDragon Tamer Training – This was definitely a favorite of the month. I think I like it even more now in retrospect than I did while reading it, and I really, really enjoyed reading it. This book is a fictional memoir of a woman in the fantasy-equivalent of Victorian England who sets off on a journey to research dragons in a far away land. Honestly it felt like Elizabeth Bennet was climbing into caves and exploring ruins. It had a smart sense of humor and the narrator at the time of writing her memoir is in her 70s, so the story she’s telling from when she’s 19 is full of witticisms and retrospect. It was really well written and really entertaining, and I’m definitely gonna pick up the second one. 4.5 stars

And that’s it for OWLs! I succeeded in completing all the prompts, and so I’ll continue with Magizoologist in August for the NEWTs. Lemme know how you did!

April Wrap Up

So in addition to the five books and manga mentioned above, I read thirty-five more things! 33 were manga, 2 were books. Can you tell I’m still deep into my manga kick? Can you?

LDK Vol. 1

LDK vols 1-9 by Ayu Watanabe – I picked this series up on Kindle Unlimited (I have a free trial version for now, so I’m taking advantage of it) and honestly it was pretty entertaining for a while, but I kinda just… lost interest. By the time volume nine rolled around, this manga was neck-deep in your standard tropes and dramas. And I’m not saying that was bad necessarily, because I definitely get into the mood for manga like that, but at my time of reading it really just wasn’t doing it for me. It was fun while it last though. I might continue it again in the future, who knows. 3-3.5 stars each

The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet (Wayfarers, #1)

The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers – I picked this up on audio originally to be a Fantasy Bingo 2019-2020 book, but I didn’t finish it in time. So now it’s gonna be a Fantasy Bingo 2020-2021 book. I ended up rather liking this. The characterization was really neat and while nothing really happened lots of things were happening. This book really was a lot of small plot points instead of a big goal overarching. It was pleasant and nice, but I gotta tell ya, I have about zero motivation to pick up the next one. Why? Who knows. 4 stars

Mars, Vol. 1

Mars vols 1-4 by Fuyumi Soryo – This one went the same way as LDK did. I kinda just got bored with it. I remember picking up the first volume in high school and liking it, but I couldn’t remember what it was about. So I plucked the first handful of volumes off Kindle and gave them a try. Well, turned out to be a dramatic romance. And I must reiterate: I do like those normally. I don’t know what it was about this, but by volume four I really didn’t care to pick up volume five. It was alright while it lasted though. 3-4 stars each

Waiting for Spring 1 (Waiting for Spring, #1)

Waiting for Spring vol 1 by Anashin – I realize I just complained about two romances right before this, but this is a romance and I really liked it. So much so that I’ve ordered the first four volumes physically and they’re on their way here now! They’ll be part of next month’s haul. This manga follows a girl who ends up becoming friends with the members of the basketball team at her school. Awkward teenage feels ensue, yada yada. But I liked this one and am gonna keep going. Maybe it was the execution that made this one different? Who knows. 4 stars

The Heroic Legend of Arslan, Vol. 1

The Heroic Legend of Arslan vols 1-2 by Hiromu Arakawa – Do you recognize the author name? This is the same person who wrote the all-mighty Fullmetal Alchemist! This is a fantasy following a prince to a kingdom on the brink of war. While his father is ruthless and loves the glory of battle, Arslan is gentle and thoughtful and doesn’t like to fight. This series had a slow, but solid beginning, but volume two really picked up and made me want to continue, so I will! 3.5 and 4 stars

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid – I think I was in a weird reading mood this month. This one’s a bit outside my norm, but the hype made me pick it up when I saw it on Scribd, so. This book is a story about a woman who had seven husbands, her rise to fame, and what happened to get her there. It was alright. I knew going into it that I likely wasn’t going to super love it, but I did end up enjoying it for the most part. So for someone who doesn’t typically read this genre, I thought the book was pretty solid, and I can see how someone who does read this genre would be bonkers for this book. 3.75 stars

Black Butler, Vol. 28 (Black Butler, #28)

Black Butler vols 12-28 by Yana Toboso – So last month I read vols 1-11 and I basically raved about how much I was loving it. Well, this month I caught up to where the series is currently at (vol 29 comes out in August) and guys, I am smitten.

The manga is set in 1889 England, and, well, here’s the goodreads synopsis because I’m crap at this:

In the Victorian ages of London The Earl of the Phantomhive house, Ciel Phantomhive, needs to get his revenge on those who had humiliated him and destroyed what he loved. Not being able to do it alone he sells his soul to a demon he names Sebastian Michaelis. Now working as his butler, Sebastian must help the Earl Phantomhive in this suspenseful, exciting, thriller manga.

And honestly that synopsis doesn’t do it justice. It’s so much more than that. Black Butler has quickly become one of my all-time favorite manga. Like, I’m talking in my top 3 ever. Ever. It’s just so good. It’s well written, it’s funny, it’s suspenseful, it’s mysterious, it’s action-packed, it’s occasionally absurd, and it’s everything I want in a manga.

The currently plot arch around the last few volumes has me absolutely reeling and I am pining for volume 29 so much. Honestly I might even reread the entire series to keep the edge off in the meantime. Augh I can’t get over this series. And as of yesterday, I lent all twenty eight volumes to my sister so she can read it so I have someone to talk to about it. I need to talk about the plot twist, augh. And nobody I know has caught up yet. So I’m forcing my sister to commiserate with me. She’s gonna send me live-reactions as she reads and I’m so ready for it. I do have to say though, while the manga is fantastic, I don’t think the anime is on the same caliber. For some reason the anime is mostly filler. It’s not bad, it’s good, but if you watch the anime and go ‘why in the world does she love this so much’ it’s because you’re missing the point. Most of the manga plot doesn’t actually show up in the anime. Just. Sayin’.

Anyways, I love this series. The last I think four volumes were all five stars, and leading up to it, there were a few more dotted in there. I’m so ready for volume 29.

4-5 stars each


Other Stuff

  • I’ve jumped on the baking bandwagon. Cooking, too. This month, I made coffee cake, loaded potato soup, a million tacos, and today I’m gonna take a crack at a slow-cooker brownie cookie. I even bought yeast, dammit.
  • I started playing Breath of the Wild again, and man am I loving it.

Reading Goals

  • Read 50 books – 94/100
  • Maintain a consistent posting schedule
    January – Fail
    February – Pass
    March – Pass
    April – Pass
  • Keep track of reading statistics – In progress
  • Reduce physical TBR to 200 – 236

And that’s it! April was a tiring month despite me not really doing anything. It was weird. If you’ve read any of the above, lemme know! Happy reading!

Fantasy Bingo 2020-21 | Fourth and Fifth Row Picks

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Happy Easter! Today I’m going to go over my fourth and fifth row of potential picks for r/Fantasy’s Bingo Challenge.

For the full details of the challenge, check out r/Fantasy’s 2020 Bingo Announcement thread.

For my first row picks, look here. For my second and third row picks, look here.

The card:

Fourth row picks:

A book that made you laugh. Hard mode: Not Pratchett

  • I feel like this one’s gonna have to wait to fill. I mean how am I gonna know ahead of time if it’ll make me laugh or not?

Five short stories. Hard mode: An entire anthology

  • This one’s always hard for me because I’m not a huge short story person (it’s a me problem, not a book problem). I do have one anthology though: The Time Traveler’s Almanac edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer, which is about, you guessed it, time travel stories. Hard mode!

Big dumb object. Hard mode: The classic golden-age of science fiction definition of Big Dumb Object

  • Right now I’m thinking either Sphere by Michael Chrichton. Or if I actually finish Caliban’s War by James S. A. Corey, then Caliban’s War!

Feminist novel. Hard mode: Feminist novel by a person of color or Indigeous author.

Novel by a Canadian author. Hard mode: Book from an Canadian small press OR self-published Canadian author

Fifth row picks:

Novel with a number in the title. Hard mode: Also features a color in the title.

Romantic fantasy/Paranormal romance. Hard Mode: Read and participate in HEA Book Club pick

  • For hard mode, obviously I’ll have to wait and see what the picks end up being, but otherwise I’ve got Outlander by Diana Gabaldon and Soulless by Gail Carriger which would work

Novel with a magical pet. Hard mode: Magical pet can also speak

  • Yet again The Girl in the Tower by Katherine Arden would fit for this one. And honestly that’s all I can think of for this one. If I find one by a happy accident, yay.

Graphic novel/audio book. Hard mode: Stand-alone graphic novel/Audio book over 25 hours long

  • I’m not even gonna put something here, there are endless possibilities

Novel featuring politics. Hard mode: Not featuring royalty

  • I don’t own this yet but it’s probably going to be The Tyrant Baru Cormorant, which is my most anticipated release for this year. I. am. SO. PUMPED.

And that’s it! All five rows more or less given ideas. I’m really hoping to actually finish the square this year. If you’re participating, lemme know! Happy reading!