End of Hiatus (life update!) + Hiatus Wrap-Up

Hi everyone!

Wow, I’ve actually missed this blog a lot. But I also feel like this time away from it rekindled my interest in blogging about books and not just write reviews on Goodreads (which I kept doing while on blog hiatus).

I really felt like I needed some time off an activity (blogging) that I know I enjoy in order to explore my passion in doing other things too, so I sacrificed bookblogging because I knew I would get back to it and enjoy it even more, while other passions needed my full attention in order for me to integrate them in my routine in a way that would be permanent. Does that make sense? I don’t know, but it made sense to me.

It wasn’t just about my passions though! I moved to another country just this past week, so I’ve had to get prepared for that, physically and mentally. Now, because I’m here and I still don’t know how things will work and how my week will look once I find a job (sigh adulting) I actually don’t know how active I will manage to be, but I have queued a few reviews of books I’ve read this summer that I want to have on my blog too (although you can always read reviews of every single book I read on my goodreads), plus all the tags I’ve been neglecting (aehm, shoutout to Laura who kept tagging me ♥) so there should be at least one post a week.

But let’s talk about books because that’s what we’re all here to do.

Here’s my hiatus wrap up, just in picture format because it’s every book I read since June (and the ones worth talking about are getting full reviews here soon).

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Well, well, well. I wonder if these books follow a trend? Yes, yes they do.

In June (pride month) I promised myself to only read LGBT+ books, and I realized it wasn’t much of an effort at all. And the thing is, I was already reading mostly books that featured LGBT+ characters, and that’s what I kept doing all summer. Which brought me to realize that this is what I’m “known” for (not that I’m famous but whatever). It’s just that every one of my mutuals on twitter and my friends on GR know I mostly read those books and I realized that I don’t mind that one bit and that my blog should reflect that. So, once I’m fully back, this blog will feature discussions surrounding LGBT+ lit, LGBT+ representation in books and media, as well as the usual reviews of LGBT+ books.

All I can say is that I’m really happy that I found a.. niche? where I fee comfortable, both reading-wise and (book)community-wise, plus it brings me joy to help (often younger or much younger) readers find books where they might feel represented (or warn them to avoid others if the representation in them is bad or harmful).

Of course I’ll also review any book I feel like reading regardless of that, but that’s the direction I feel make the most sense for me.

I’m pretty sure none of the people who follow me will be bothered by all this, but just in case, well, you’re free to leave.

With all that said, I’m looking forward to keeping up with this blog again and I hope you’re all doing well (plus if you wanna tell me about your summer -or winter for some of you I guess- I’d love to hear what y’all were up to while I was away) ♥

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April Wrap-Up

Late as always because I forgot that April has 30 days it’s not true but it seems like a good excuse shhhhh

So this is what I read this month:

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Minus The Summer Palace because I’ve actually re-read it today (May 1st).

Here’s a quick recap of the most interesting stuff with links to my goodreads reviews (I haven’t posted any review on my blog this month because I didn’t feel like any of them were good enough to put here):

  • Honestly BenI liked it a bit more than book 1 in the duology. I also think it continues an interesting dialogue about labels and how they define or (or not).
  • What Lies at the EndI was really disappointed by this. It’s not that it’s bad, but everyone was talking about it like it was the next best thing after sliced bread and it just wasn’t (for me at least)
  • The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the GalaxyI wish I had enjoyed this a lot more than I did
  • Lover Boy: This was so unexpectedly good! Definitely recommend if you’re into mangas/manhwas
  • Gemina: YES I finally read this! I still like Illuminae better but it was still an amazing read and it deserves a full 5 stars
  • Flame in the MistI actually finished it today (May 1st) but I’m counting it in my April wrap-up because I read most of it in April anyway. I will have a full review up both on GR and on the blog, but I ended up being pretty disappointed

I didn’t DNF any book this month but it still was a weird and almost disappointing reading month. I was in a weird slump basically, so I had to postpone reading a lot of things that I wanted to read just because I was afraid I wouldn’t enjoy them in this mood. (However, I did read A TON of fan fiction and that was most days all I wanted to read instead of real books. Not that I’m complaining since I think some fanfics are even better than some published books.)

Blogging-wise, April was a total failure. I’m still trying to find some balance and I clearly am not there. My main issue is that even though I review everything on GR I still don’t feel like all of my reviews are good/long/structured enough to go well on my blog, so I just leave them on GR. If anyone has any advice on this (besides get off your a** and write good reviews already) please let me know ♥

March Wrap-up

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I honestly don’t know how to start my Wrap-up posts anymore so here’s a gif of a fluffy cat in a tie with a tiny book and tiny milk bowl and a tiny milk bottle

BOOKS

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Here’s everything I read in March. Seven “full” books, three mangas (that come in different volumes so they count as multiple books on GR *sigh*), three short stories, one webcomic, plus one DNF (Finnikin of the Rock).

Honorable mentions are (links go to either GR or to my review if I’ve done one):

  • A Conjuring of Light, by V.E. Schwab: I loved this book and the whole series so much I still haven’t been able to review this last book at all. I still plan on writing a series review at some point because this quickly became one of my favorites.
  • A Guy/Man Like You (the title translates to “guy” in the comic but everywhere else it’s written as “man” so idk), by Waje: I really love this manhwa! It’s very character-driven and the art is beautiful. It’s still ongoing and each update kills me.
  • Check, Please!by Ngozi Ukazu: you can read this webcomic on this tumblr page and honestly you should because it’s going to heal your soul.
  • Openly Straightby Bill Konigsberg: your monthly dose of coming-of-age contemporary LGBT+ novel that’s funny and sweet and opens a discussion about labels.
  • rock, by Anyta Sunday: a beautiful love story, maybe not for everyone, but it’s definitely worth checking out.
  • fawn, by Nash Summers: beautifully written, magical and free.

Overall it was a very good reading month!

ANIME

I rewatched Yuri!!! On Ice. Yes. Again. In my defense, I was sick and really needed something to cheer me up, and yes, it was still as awesome the 8th or so time around.

I also started rewatching Death Note, which I first and last saw around 8 years ago. I actually also really want to read the manga at some point, but for now I’m sticking to the anime (it also gives me something to do when I don’t feel like reading). I loved it 8 years ago and I still love it now, though I’m not very far into it because I want to savor it instead of binging it for once.

MUSIC


 

I hope you all had a great month! Tell me some of your highlights in the comment if you feel like it!

February Wrap-Up

Hello everyone!

BOOKS

Excuse another wrap-up featuring a screenshot (plus a very poor Paint job) but I don’t feel like posting a picture of each individual book I read this month!

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Admittedly I haven’t done a great job at reviewing these on the blog, but (here is my monthly-excuse list): 1) I was in the middle of my AFTG re-read, of which I have a full series review, and there was no point in reviewing the books again; 2) I plan on doing a series review of Shades of Magic, but since I haven’t finished A Conjuring of Light yet, that will have to be in a March post.

I’d say I really enjoyed everything I read this month, and while I was sure I would like Shades of Magic, I really didn’t expect to love it as much as I am! Another great surprise was Peter Darling  by Austin Chant, which I’m already dying to reread.

I’ve also read two mangas:

  • Hachimitsu Darling was a very short and very sweet one, plus it involved a kitten and I was sold on page one;

  • Himegoto Asobi was a kind of similar manga as Hachimitsu, but much longer and even though it was still 5 stars (probably more like 4,5?) I found I wouldn’t have minded it if it was slightly shorter.

And a short story, The Prince of the Moon by Megan Derr.

Despite the short month, I know I could have read much more than this, but I spent a lot of time reading YOI fanfiction (yes, I’m still deep in that hell), plus February has been a really tough month for me. I know I seem to say it every time, but that’s just how things have been lately (on top of things I also have the flu, yay!).

 

MUSIC

I’ve listened to more or less the same stuff as I always do:

Plus a few new things:

And a few old favorites I hadn’t listened to in a while:

  • The entire Marina and the Diamonds discography;
  • Così fan tutte by Mozart (here’s something you might not know about me: I was born a classical music lover, and only later started discovering modern music): it’s one of my all-time favorite operas and they were playing it at my local theater, so I went to see it twice ♥

 

GAMES 

The only game I played this month is Pokemon Go, and I didn’t get to play it nearly as much as I would have. Sadly, after they released the second generation, I’ve been down with the cold first and then with the flu, so I’m waaay behind on my Pokemon trainer goals :/

That’s all for this month! How’s everyone been doing? I need some positivity so I’d love if you left me a comment with one positive thing that happened to you in February ♥

January Wrap-Up

I’m so late with this post! I should have timed everything better but I somehow always end up forgetting that the month is coming to an end.

BOOKS:

I’ve already read a total of 20 books that count towards my reading challenge, but as you can see below (I had to screenshot this because I’m lazy) a lot of these are either mangas or short stories.

I also DNF’d three books, which is an awful lot if you ask me:

  • Saga, vol.1: I didn’t exactly find it bad, but I just wasn’t interested in reading it at all. I chose not to rate it because I didn’t read enough of it.
  • Gilded cage: I’m so sad. This was a book I was so looking forward to, and I had even managed to snatch an ARC of it, but I just couldn’t do it. What I mean is, I could have finished it, but I’ve decided to adopt a policy of if I feel like it’s not worth it,  I’m not going to stick to it because life is really too short. You can read my review on GR to have a better idea why this wasn’t for me.
  • Our Own Private Universe: TFW you want to read a sweet, lighthearted LGBT contemporary romance but it quite honestly sucks is not a pleasant one.

But let’s come to the books I’ve actually finished.

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I reviewed some of these on the blog already and I’ve reviewed all of them (or I’m in the process of reviewing) on goodreads. I can’t talk about all of them, but here’s a short list of my favorite:

  • Illuminae: I wanted this book to be my first read of 2017 and I couldn’t have made a better choice. I have a written a GR review that doesn’t make much sense and I’m still too emotionally unstable to make a proper review that would suit this blog.
  • The Summer Palace: This is a short story/epilogue to the Captive Prince trilogy and it’s probably the best thing that happened to this fandom. I’m kind of proud of my review for being among the top ones, and I want to reread this short story right now. If you’ve read the entire Captive Prince trilogy you definitely have to read this one.
  • How to Repair a Mechanical Heart
  • The Darkest Part of the Forest
  • Blood Bank: I’ve been thinking about it and I think this might be the first full manga (okay, it’s a manhwa, but still) I’ve read in my life, and it probably completely ruined my future experience with any other manga I’ll read from now on because it’s too beautiful and pure for this world and I don’t know if anything will ever come close to it. Due to its content, it’s definitely not suited for everybody, and I have to admit some of it makes me slightly uncomfortable, but if you’re not new to the genre I absolutely recommend checking it out!
  • The Song of Achilles: I haven’t been able to write a proper review for this yet. I’m getting tears just thinking about this beautiful book. It’s a story that means so much to me and it’s one of the most painful books I’ve ever read. I wasn’t able to stop crying and I couldn’t even see the words on my Kindle anymore because of it. I ugly-sobbed for hours and still do whenever I think about it.
  • The Foxhole Court: this is a re-read (I’m currently re-reading the next two books in the series) because the best books are the ones that hurt you. I have an extremely messy review on gr and a slightly better blog series review here, so do what you want with those.

Besides all of these, I’ve read so much Yuri!!! On Ice fanfiction it’s ridiculous. I’ve probably read more than one book worth of fanfic this month alone and since it’s a relatively new world for me I was positively impressed with the quality of many works.
All in all I can say this has been an excellent reading month for me!

I usually have a section here for shows/anime and music but I’ve been an extremely boring person and I haven’t watched or listened to anything new this past month! I’ve only tried watching Haikyuu and after the first two episodes I haven’t felt like continuing, but it’s not its fault. In fact, I liked the first two eps, but I think I’m just not in the mood for watching anything lately and I’d just rather read than watch anything, you know? Are you ever in such a mood?

Also, I’ve done a lot of buddy-reads and they’re honestly the best! I didn’t think I was cut out for BRs because I’m such a mood reader that I wasn’t sure it was something that would work for me, but it was just a matter of finding the right people to read with!

Now this is where I get slightly political so I don’t blame you if you just skip this part.

I want to keep this a book blog obviously and I don’t feel like I’m qualified to speak about much else, but there’s so much awful stuff going on in the world that I feel like I should say something about it, but at the same time I don’t even know where to start.
In case it’s not clear, yes, I’m talking about Tr*mp, who is a literal piece of shit. I’m obviously not in the US, and quite frankly I’ve lost interest in even visiting it as a tourist long ago, but for what it’s worth I can honestly say a lot of people here overseas are feeling scared. It’s only been a couple of weeks and it already seems like everything is going to hell.
I don’t know what I can do as an European citizen, except retweet every piece of useful info I can find and restate my support to every minority – although, given that countless minority groups plus every single woman are being targeted…we’re not really a minority anymore, are we?
If you live in the US, please think of your safety and well-being first. If you’re feeling anxious and overwhelmed, reread that book that made you smile like an idiot. Take a hot bath. Marathon that anime. Recharge. You will have more energy to fight tomorrow.

December Wrap-Up

Has really another month passed? It felt really short this time around. Oh well.

BOOKS:

(All titles lead to my reviews, either on goodreads or on the blog)

  • Le cose così by Labadessa: this is a short graphic novel by an Italian artist who has become really popular on Facebook, posting his ironically philosophical comics whose main features are the yellow background and the fact that its characters are birds. It’s a must-read for any Italian millennial.
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  • L’amore di Audrey by Alessia Esse
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  • The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch: this book took me a very long time to read, as I explain in my review. I really liked it and its characters, but I’m also pretty sure I won’t continue this series.
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  • Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell: it was my first RR book and I loved it so much! Her writing style really resonated with me and I’ll make sure to read more of her books.
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  • Carry on by Rainbow Rowell
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  • Captive Prince by C.S. Pacat
  • Prince’s Gambit by C.S. Pacat
  • Kings Rising by C.S. Pacat

    I reread (okay, I’m still currently reading Kings Rising, but whatever, I’ll finish it before the new year) these for the 3rd time wihin the past six months. That’s perfectly normal, right? Yes, yes it is. It’s my favorite series and I wanted to finish the year on a good note. Also I’ve been buddy-reading them with a friend (it was the first time for her) and she loved them so much, and there’s no better feeling in the world than having your friends love your favorite books!


SHOWS/ANIME/MOVIES:

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Yuri!!! On Ice and Skam were really the only things I’ve been watching, so nothing really changed from last month. Sadly the current seasons are both over, and while I’ve been able to let Skam go, I’m still riding the YoI wave, in form of fanfiction (reading and writing), obsessive fanart search, countless re-watches. Tell me I’m not the only one.
I don’t think I’ve ever been so involved in a fandom (which is, btw, so amazing and supportive), and the feelings Yuri!!! On Ice has given me are so real and positive. It’s exactly what I (and many of us) needed.

MUSIC:

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Not much has changed for me in December, with the only exception of the YoI soundtrack having being released. I’ve been listening to it for weeks now and I love it. It has so many different genres and if you don’t feel like listening to the whole thing you can just loop one or two songs that go well with your current mood (or for whatever activity you’re doing).
Basically, it’s safe to say that YoI has taken over my life in every possible way, but I don’t regret it at all.

 

How has your month been? Did you find any last-minute favorites for 2016?

November Wrap-Up

I can’t believe this is already my second wrap-up here on the blog! I still have a long way to go with my blogging, but I really enjoy having my own platform and it’s something that doesn’t stress me out (yet?). If anything, it has helped me with some difficult times I’ve been having, so I’m grateful for it.


BOOKS:

 Reading-wise, it was a great month! I didn’t get to read as many books as I usually do, but the All for the Game series has taken me very long to finish. I just had to go back often and reread some parts of it, so that must have been why. If you keep up with my blog, you must be wondering “But what about Locke Lamora and The Demon King?”. Well, my friends, I have majorly failed #tometopple. I am still currently reading The Lies of Locke Lamora and I’m really enjoying it, but I’ve been more busy than expected, and thus haven’t been able to finish it by the time the readathon finished. It’s all good though, I’m not going to let myself feel disappointed. I’ve done other things and that’s okay.

MUSIC:

This has been playlist-month for me! I generally prefer full albums to playlists, but once you discover book playlists I feel like you can’t go back, and that’s exactly what happened to me.

SHOWS/MOVIES:

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I haven’t been able to watch any TV-show in the past few months because all I wanted to do in my free time was reading. But then, I started seeing a lot of people talk about Yuri!!! On Ice on twitter, and when I saw C.S. Pacat was among them, I was like “I’m sold.

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I started watching it two weeks ago and I’m total trash for it. My twitter has basically become a YOI fanart collection and I don’t regret it one bit. It’s possible I might do a full series review here on the blog once all the episodes are out because I have strong opinions about this show (like, it’s also mostly fangirling, but I feel like this show has also such an amazing objective cultural/societal value).

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Another show I started watching is Skam and I’m obsessed *sighs*. I started with the third season but I think I will give the first two seasons a go, too.

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As for movies, I’ve only seen Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and I loved it. I’m a Hufflepuff and I feel like I finally have a hero from my own house that I can worship and it’s awesome. There is just one thing I didn’t particularly appreciate and that has to do with the casting of a certain actor, although this didn’t play a major role in this movie (but it will in the next ones).

LIFE/GENERAL:

Um, better not go into my IRL life to be honest. However, I do want to mention that this is a month where I’ve made a ton of new online friendships (on Goodreads and Twitter), and I’m very grateful for it. (shoutout to my messy bitches Amber, Caitlin, Em, Jen, Jiana, May, Pragya, Ry, Sarah, and my friend Maud that finally started Yuri!!! On Ice so we can cry together. You all have no idea what an amazing support you have been to me these past weeks without even knowing about it) ❤