I kind of became the queen of hiatuses // Taking breaks from blogging: DISCUSSION

I am alive, people! (You can all exhale in relief and shower me with confetti now.) Sorry about the lack of posting and interaction this past week! </3 Things have just been so busy, and I just simply didn’t have time to write and schedule posts, or even read, really. I recently came back from a trip to Toronto, though! I visited my cousins and we all went to Niagara Falls together, which was lots of fun.

On the reading side of things, my slump has been slowly wearing off but I lack time?? I used to read on the bus but I’ve been so tired I end up sleeping. Oops. #sorrynotsorry (I NEED SLEEP.) BUT. I’m currently reading The Hate U Give* by Angie Thomas! *cue celebration* Haven’t finished THUG yet but THE HYPE WAS SPOT ON. Already love Starr and her story!

But I digress. TOPIC FOR TODAY: Hiatuses. Which I am an expert on** obviously because I’ve taken many of them and have now became temporarily queen. (Shhhh.)

*I tried to put in the link to Goodreads but it’s not working?? Oh well.

**The term expert is subjective, okay?

Why it can be totally necessary

Why I take them, basically. Queens don’t do things for no reason?? I mean, they totally could, but. Even if it’s horrible logic, there’s some logic behind decisions.

  • Lacking time. I will never have enough time?? I think the time gods up there are all conspiring against me, honestly. This is definitely one of my primary reasons for taking a break, because I simply don’t have the time to write up any posts in advance and then… well, you know the rest.
    No time = no writing blog posts = hiatus for who knows how long. QUITE SIMPLE.
  • Lacking motivation. Leads to the dreaded blogging slump! Blogging slumps can be the worst?? When you have time but not for blogging because you don’t feel like it. SIGH.
    Time + no motivation to write = hiatus (until you have time + motivation).
  •  Lacking ideas. Blogging slumps can definitely be caused by this? You have time on your hands, have the motivation to write a post, and then… FART. No thoughts, no ideas, on what to write.
    Time + motivation + no ideas = blogging slump = hiatus
  • Personal issues. Whether it be family, job, or school, we all have lives outside of blogging (GASP) and that can definitely get in the way of the blog! It happens! Some bloggers are really good at juggling their personal lives and blogging lives so that the blog isn’t affected by their personal life, others (me), perhaps require breaks to not, you know, die from all the pressure. And you come back feeling better! (Hopefully.) All’s good.
    Personal issues (do not)= hiatus but Personal issues + being overwhelmed can = hiatus
  • Reading slump. Being a book blogger, this one’s more geared to book bloggers but if you’re in a reading slump, it can definitely influence your blogging! Especially for reviews. My reading slump have led to a blogging slump previously (but that’s not necessarily the case all the time)!
    Reading slump = possible blogging slump = hiatus. 
  • Vacations. This totally goes unsaid?? Again, there are of course bloggers out there who are super committed and either write posts during their vacation, or schedule them in advance, so no hiatus in that situation, but IT’A A VACATION. Apart from the fact that you don’t have to ever justify your hiatus at all (though I’m guilty of doing so), if there was ever a time where you deserve to take a break, it’s when you’re going on a trip!

The main consequence to taking hiatuses

Let me first state: If you need/want to take a hiatus, GO FOR IT. There is literally nothing stopping you whatsoever and this little part is not meant to change that at all. The world is your oyster! And all that. Yes, there are consequences, as there is with anything else in life, but they’re most definitely not the end of the world.

  • Your stats will go down! Yes, I realize “stats/numbers aren’t the focus of blogging” yet they are something the majority of bloggers definitely think about/concentrate on. I get it! I totally do as well. But if you don’t post anything, naturally, stats WILL decrease. Speaking from a 7-month hiatus experience, although my followers have increased, my stats aren’t how they used to be during my, (for lack of a better description) peak months of blogging even after I’ve started blogging again.BUT. Most people won’t take such a long hiatus! Although you’ll have a period in time where your stats are lower, it’s not really a huge issue in the grand scheme of things. ❤
  • Your followers will miss youuuuuuuu!! (Possibly. Hopefully?) Of course, there are the followers who don’t actually visit your blog often or at all and who haven’t noticed your hiatus at all, whether it was for a week or a year, but the people you do interact will miss talking to you! I’m speaking from the context that whenever one of my blogger friends go on hiatus I definitely miss reading their posts and talking to them! #bloggerfriendsftw But on the bright side: when you return, they’ll be there to welcome you back! ❤

I wanted at least 3 for this part but my brain is like short circuiting and can’t come up with anything. Oops. But again, remember! Take that hiatus if you want to!! Don’t let my nonsensical ramblings take root in your head.

For how long can you take a hiatus?

Short answer: However long you want! It’s your life, your blog, your choice. Whether it’s a week, a month, 3 months or more, you do you!

Oh my lord that sounded so cheesy what is happening to me.

Let’s see. For me, I can’t remember exactly all the hiatuses I’ve taken, but there’s the most recent one, which lasted almost 2 weeks-ish? Wow, I didn’t think it was that long. For what it’s worth, I did try to come up with a blog post when I returned from Toronto, but it didn’t exactly work out?

Last year, I took my longest hiatus (hopefully the record will never be surpassed!) of around 7 months starting June-ish of 2016 and ending at the end of January/start of February this year. Prior to that… I may have taken a few weeks/few days off here and there? Though I have a bad habit of taking accidental hiatuses, if you will, where it wasn’t really planned and I don’t even end up mentioning it in a post or anything??? OOPS.

What was I talking about again?

Right. Length!

(Sometimes I wonder if I’m writing an actual coherent discussion or just typing whatever comes to my mind while looking at the screen.)

I definitely don’t plan on taking more than 1 month hiatus in the future though, particularly if the hiatus is due to my poor time management skills haha. Length of a hiatus definitely varies from person to person though? A lot of people I’ve seen take maybe a few days, or a week or two?

But honestly, the short and cheesy answer is actually 100% true. Your blog, your life, your choice!


Okay so that concludes this ‘discussion’! I put it in quotations seeing how I am very skeptical of whether or not this actually makes sense?? I read it over once and… that’s pretty much it. (Don’t do this for any essay, fyi.) SO I hope this made somewhat sense? What are your thoughts on taking a break from blogging: good or bad? How often do you take them? Let me know your thoughts in the comments! Side note; I am still behind on my comments, this post is currently being written at 1 AM, please bear with me haha. I love reading and replying to your comments though! I hope everyone has a great day, and I’ll talk to you guys soon! ❤

Parallel universes, family bonds and saving worlds | A Million Worlds With You

A million words would not be enough to express how much I want to visit the millions of worlds in these books. 

Hahaha I’m so good with words, guys. Probably best in all the worlds. 😉 Right?

Okay, I’ll stop now.

Hi everyone! I hope you guys are enjoying your Saturday! (I know I am, my god, this week has been so long.)

Okay, it’s been SO long since a review, partially because I haven’t read many books over March, and partially because I just haven’t gotten around to writing any for the books I *did* read haha. It’s April now though, and I’m trying to get out of the slump I’d been in for March, and so far it’s going well! I FINALLY READ A BOOK GUYS. *cue celebration* (Hence I am now dying trying to figure out what one book out of the 145678 books I should read next. Even though I already have a tentative list of books I need to read asap?? #nologic)

*NO SPOILERS for this book! I wouldn’t say there were many major spoilers for the other two books, either to be honest, but skim if you’re really worried about that haha*


A Million Worlds With You by Claudia Gray

Publication Date: November 6th 2017
Publisher: HarperTeen
Genre(s): Sci-fi, Young-Adult
Series Status: Firebird #3
Page Count: 419
Source & Format: Owned, hardcover

Synopsis from Goodreads:

A million universes. A million dangers. One destiny.

The fate of the multiverse rests in Marguerite Caine’s hands. Marguerite has been at the center of a cross-dimensional feud since she first traveled to another universe using her parents’ invention, the Firebird. Only now has she learned the true plans of the evil Triad Corporation—and that those plans could spell doom for dozens or hundreds of universes, each facing total annihilation.

Paul Markov has always been at Marguerite’s side, but Triad’s last attack has left him a changed man—angry and shadowed by tragedy. He struggles to overcome the damage done to him, but despite Marguerite’s efforts to help, Paul may never be the same again.

So it’s up to Marguerite alone to stop the destruction of the multiverse. Billions of lives are at stake. The risks have never been higher. And Triad has unleashed its ultimate weapon: another dimension’s Marguerite—wicked, psychologically twisted, and always one step ahead.

In the conclusion to Claudia Gray’s Firebird trilogy, fate and family will be questioned, loves will be won and lost, and the multiverse will be forever changed. It’s a battle of the Marguerites…and only one can win.

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Dimensional travelling and all the wanderlust (!!!)

Four words: Travelling. Through. Parallel. Universes. IS THAT NOT AWESOME?? (An enthusiastic yes is the right and only answer by the way.) An infinite amount of parallel universes where even one alternate choice/outcome leads to a whole different future. Above the characters or the plot, the concept of this series is what drew me in first and foremost, and definitely what I loved the most.Would it be greedy of me to say I wish the worlds had been developped even more though?? LET ME TRAVEL TO ALL THE PLACES please, thanks. Bye, Marguerite, it’s my turn now.  In the previous books, I loved exploring this concept, and the third book was no exception, I just loved the idea and world Claudia Gray created. I feel like the scientific aspect of it was explored more as well, which was great! (but maybe that’s just me holding on to anything that could make this parallel universe come true.) Now I just need people like Marguerite’s parents to create a Firebird for me?? NOW HIRING, people!!

“Every single world we’ve visited isn’t just random—it’s the result of countless choices, all of them combining to create a new reality.”

Basically: this world is fabulous. 

Snackable-themes of family and dark sides.

(Snackable is totally a word, hush children and auto correct.) Pause on the squealing-about-parallel-world-travelling things! My memory is terrible and so I don’t remember in detail what I loved about the previous books*, but in this one, I certainly appreciated the focus on familial bonds, among other things. Marguerite’s parents’ love for their children had so much depth, I feel, explored in the different worlds we visit, shown through different lives, different aspects of the characters. I really loved how this book explored family; how they were practically always present (could it be we have a normal family???!), and the way it showed how much family can impact your character and your choices.

*No, of course I am not too lazy at the moment to open my review on the previous books…

As for the DARK SIDES. *cue music* It’s not as sinister as it sounds, I promise. I think what was really interesting to read in this book was the exploration of a person’s true character. I’m going to say straight up; I didn’t like Marguerite that much. But, what this book did a great job of is making us think about–made Marguerite think about–is the potential anyone has to be, well, evil, or a bad person. Through these alternate worlds, we meet different versions of the same character; multiple Marguerites, multiple parents, Pauls, and so on. Apart from making for a thrilling story, the main Marguerite (and Paul, Theo, etc) is really forced in this one to confront that despite how different she may be from those Marguerites, they are still a part of her. And I think it was really important for Marguerite to see that.

Okay, deep thoughts almost over! Can I mention Paul though??! I don’t particularly care about him and Marguerite as a ship anymore, though I used to, I’m much more interested in Paul as an individual character! Poor Paul. He, too, was forced to confront the reality of his different versions. But for him, unlike Meg, acceptance came a lot harder, and a lot differently. Paul was a whole lot more broken emotionally, causing him to question everything that he used to believe in and it was heartbreaking–but also very necessary to see that.

“But just because something’s been damaged doesn’t mean it’s ruined.”

DEEP THOUGHTS OVER GUYS. But, next, what I was not a fan of…

Where is Theo? (Also, byeeee love triangle)

We have Marguerite (sadly), Paul (poor broken soul), and sure, we had Theo… but I totally would’ve loved more page time with him. Theo is such a precious cinnamon roll!! In previous books there was also Theo and Paul’s bromance that I loved, but this book was lacking that as well, which is SO SAD. Plus side, there is less of a love triangle in this one! Down side, I am disgruntled that Theo is still pining for Marguerite… (I won’t consider that a spoiler because it’s very very obvious who Marguerite ends up with since the first book.) He deserves so much better, and honestly is overlooked so much. #moretheoplease

“Because I want you to be happy. With or without me, whatever it takes.” Theo sighs. “That’s the difference between wanting someone and loving them.”

Special Snowflake syndrome

I think this aspect has been from the very start of the series, but I definitely think I was more aware and less accepting of it this book haha. Maybe my slump has made me too critical? A year since reading the second book has made me less emotionally invested? We may never know. But Marguerite was SUCH a special snowflake, and I think that definitely had a part in me not liking Marguerite as much. Her attitude, the way everyone makes her seem so much better than she really is? Got on my nerves, won’t lie. BUT. What really took the cake was how little repercussions she faced from her decisions. There were things she did in previous books that were not right at all, and I really wished there were more consequences rather than it being glorified. Ugh.

“But this role doesn’t need an adventurer as much as it needs someone who can… look at each world with fresh eyes. Who can perceive things deeply. Not an adventurer—an artist. You were the one we needed all along.”

Lackluster ending…

It was perfectly acceptable, to be sure, and I was definitely invested till the very end, but, at the end, I think I still wanted more than what I got. After all the tension, the excitement, it just seemed all too quick and just… lackluster. I was warned of this in advance though… So there’s that? It made the disappointment less hard to take, I think, and allowed me to still appreciate the other aspects of the finale. It was still perfectly fine though! I know a lot of people who loved it, and if you like definite endings as well, this one is perfect. Open endings can be torturous for me sometimes haha, so I did love how everything was tied up. My heart went through so much though, the book overall was definitely a thrilling read. But, the ending still left me wanting more. The classic case of “it’s me, not you?” perhaps…

Overall… (3.5 stars)

Things I loved:

  • The world (PARALLEL UNIVERSES YES PLEASE)
  • Parents and characters being evil beans
  • Paul being a broken little ball
  • THAT COVER IS SO BEAUTIFUL I COULD CRY. (Seriously, the whole series is so beautiful all I want to do is sit and look at them all day)

Things that could’ve been better:

  • Marguerite. Marguerite. Over and over, MARGUERITE. Even if she was more bearable in this one.
  • More Theo time?!
  • The ending

Verdict: An enjoyable read! I really did like it, problems aside. It was a solid finale, despite leaving me wanting more in terms of the ending and some of the characters. If you like sci-fi, action and romance, I definitely recommend picking this series up! And if you’ve already started the series, I think, unless you *really* hate Marguerite, reading this finale has the potential to be a good one for you.


GOSH THIS REVIEW. I literally worked on this for so long, I know it’s lengthy, sorry about that! But what do you think? Have you read this series, do you plan on it…? (Anyone else want to go on a world-travelling journey with me??) Let me know in the comments! Hope you have a lovely day! ❤

Books I would’ve read in March if I hadn’t been in a slump // Lists + books = fun!

Thought of the day: The universe doesn’t like to give me sleep. 

Hey everyone! I hope your first few days of April has been going well! I’m currently writing this super late, hence the above little thought because SLEEP. One of the things I love almost as much as books that, unlike books, I don’t get enough of…

But moving on, the title of this post is kind of unconventional, but, I didn’t want to exactly do a wrap-up seeing how there were so little things that happened (including the amount of books read… I believe I read 2? Possibly 3? You’d think I’d be able to remember the amount since it’s so small, but. Goldfish here.) The biggest thing, however, was my birthday and blogiversary, which I already posted about so you see? And I also talked briefly about how much I adored the movie of Beauty and the Beast (SO SO GOOD GUYS)… I am a boring little potato sometimes.

SO March wasn’t very interesting, small exciting moments aside. I’m glad I was able to still post a bit for you guys though! I’m currently trying to come up with an easier schedule for me so I can post a little more regularly, but anyway. Today’s post is kind of like a TBR?? Except not really, because I’m a huge mood reader and planning out what to read is lots of fun (because LISTS and BOOKS) but actually following that plan? Um. Yeah, no. So instead, it’s just the list and the books without any sort of attachments to it? I’m not making any sense, am I. Oh well. Letès just get into the books I would’ve read in March if I could’ve. 

Caraval by Stephanie Garbar:  I have lost count of how many people adored this book?? It sounds like something I would totally devour and I totally would’ve loved to read it last month. I will definitely be getting around to it someday, fingers crossed this month?! 

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas: I KNOW, I KNOW. This book is at the top of my TBR right now, I know this isn’t a TBR post, but aghhhh if only my slump hadn’t attacked during March! I had been looking forward to this book for so long. Everyone has been praising this book nonstop, it’s a diverse read, own-voices, SO MANY REASONS TO READ THIS. 

Hunted by Megan Spooner:  Beauty and the Beast retelling? Yes please! I haven’t read many reviews on this one, but the ones I have read are really good (haven’t gone looking for the bad ones, granted) and I really would’ve loved to read this last month, seeing how the movie of B&B was released then! SIGH. Slumps.

RoseBlood by A.G. HowardI haven’t read any of A.G. Howard’s books yet, and I plan to read her previous series Splintered as well, but I really wanted to try this one out! It’s a standalone for one thing, as well as a retelling of Phantom of the Opera. I’ve heard mixed things, but I definitely want to give it a try someday!

The Cursed Queen by Sarah Fine:  Remember how I said this isn’t a TBR? Yeah, I’m going to be honest and say I don’t think I’ll be reading this anytime soon… I loved the first book, The Imposter Queen, but it’s been such a long time that this has lowered in priority at the moment. I do want to read it though, and had I been in a more reading mood for March, I could definitely see myself picking this up.

Vicious by V.E. Schwab: In case you weren’t aware; V.E. Schwab is one of my favourite authors ever?? The Shades of Magic series has forever changed me and I am IN LOVE with her writing. I don’t even know why I haven’t read this yet???! Someone push me to read it. 

– Starfall by Melissa Landers: I hope to read this sometime as well, but again, it’s been a while so the details from the first book are a bit blurry! The POV changed too, which I’ll admit has me more hesitant because I loved the main characters in the first book so much. The struggle of companion novels. Authors, stop getting me so attached to the characters if you’re just going to snatch them away from me later?? (That goes for character deaths too actually.) 

– The Bone Witch by Run Chupeco: I don’t know if I really would’ve read this, but I definitely wouldève loved to, and will pick it up sometime in the future, hopefully! I’ve heard that it’s a diverse book, and it sounds really good, so fingers crossed for someday!

By Your Side by Kasie West Kasie West is so great at writing fluffy contemporaries! Her contemporaries are always so cute and fun and although this one has gotten mixed reviews (some expressing disappointment at the lack of the library plot being used properly, nooooooo) I definitely think it would be fun to try all the same.

Written in the Stars by Aisha Saeed I love finding new diverse reads, and I stumbled across this one a while ago and I’ve really wanted to read it! I even tried starting it a few times I think, but didn’t get too far in and obviously, didn’t finish it. We’re not doing a monthly TBR here, but if we were, I definitely want to give this a shot!


That was what, 10 books? I can’t say really if I would really be able to finish all of these, or if perhaps I would’ve chosen other books than these ones had I not been in a slump, but nonetheless these are some books I had a good chance of picking up! Some of these I hope I can read this month, others I may not, who knows! Sidenote: there’s a fair amount of fantasy here?? Whoops. Sorry not sorry. I would love to have any other recs though, contemporary or otherwise! I also want to read more diverse books; feel free to hit me up with suggestions for those as well. But mostly: have you read any of these books? Which should I prioritize? How was your month of March? (Pray for a no-slump month for me plz. :P)

I hope you have a lovely day! ❤

Basically a whole bunch of contemporary! // 2017 April Book Releases

It’s no longer April Fool’s, but funny-not-funny story for yesterday: I woke up to my sister screaming and acting like there was a spider on my bed. AGH. #sisterproblems

Hello everyone and happy second day of April! I hope your first couple of days of April have been off to a good start! I haven’t posted for the past few days though, sorry about that! I’ve been so busy and just haven’t gotten a chance to blog hop, read, or write a post at all. WHY DOES TIME HATE ME. A struggle that goes on forever. I know I don’t really have to apologize, but nonetheless.

It so does not feel like April though?? I will never understand this whole time and month thing, honestly. It feels so short. But, it is (apparently) April, which means it’s time for new books being released!! I had not had much time at all to read last month, like at all (I finished 3 books?? Which is not terrible but not at all my usual number… I hardly read any books.) BUT. I am of course an addict for new books and I am loving the titles being released this month!

April 1st

All the Forever Things by Jolene Perry: I don’t know about this one, actually?? It sounds and looks super cute but I’ve briefly skimmed some reviews and it doesn’t seem to be something I think I’d enjoy. But, nonetheless, willing to keep an open mind!

The Secret Science of Magic by Melissa Keil: The main character in this one is a genius! And has social anxiety! (? correct me if I’m wrong, someone!) And that’s all I know about it! But it sounds amazing and I’ve seen people rave about it, so count me in.

April 4th

Definitions of Indefinable Things by Whitney Taylor: Seemingly a cute contemporary! It sounds like a really fun read.

The Last Thing You Said by Sara Biren: Another contemporary! April is really bringing on the cute contemporary reads–not that I mind! Contemporary is one of my favourite genres, next to fantasy. Bring on the cute reads!

Alex, Approximately by Jenn Bennett: Ummmmm. No idea what it’s about. Oh well. It’s a contemporary? Sorry, I am no help with this description thing…

Gem & Dixie by Sara Zarr: Another contemporary! I have no idea what it’s about (I AM A GOLDFISH, OKAY.) but it looks cute!

Letters to the Lost by Brigid Kemmerer: I believe this is a contemporary?? THE COVER IS SO PRETTY. I’m in love.

But Then I Came Back by Estelle Laure: Coma patients! Friendship (??) and another contemporary! This one sounds pretty interesting, actually.

Toward a Secret Sky by Heather Maclean: Uhhh… Do I know what this book is about??? Nope. But the cover is pretty??

Defy the Stars by Claudia Gray: A sci-fi novel! I liked the author’s previous works well enough, so I’m interested in seeing how this one turns out.

Shadowcaster by Cinda Williams Chima (Shattered Realms #2): I haven’t read any of this series or any of the author’s books, but I really want to!! I’ve heard her fantasy books are really amazing, and I can’t wait.

Perfect by Cecelia Ahern (Flawed #2): This is the sequel to the first book, that released last year (Flawed) and I haven’t read that one either, but for those who have, I hope you enjoy this one!

April 6th

The State of Grace by Rachael Lucas: I believe this book deals with a character with autism?? I can’t comment on the rep or the content at all, obviously, but I heard it was good and I’m hoping that’s true?

April 11th

The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli: IT’S ALMOST HERE!!! Becky Albertallu aka creator of my best friend Simon is releasing a NEW BOOK. *flails* *dies*

Spindle Fire by Lexa Hillyer: Retelling galore!! You guys probably know how much I love retellings *cough* Beauty and the Beast phase *cough* so I’m super excited for this one.

Blacksouls by Nicole Castroman: PIRATES AND PIRATING! YAY. I really enjoyed the first book, Blackhearts, and I need this one asap?? Plz and thanks.

Alex and Eliza: A Love Story by Melissa de la Cruz: I’ve recently gotten into Hamilton??? SO PERFECT TIMING because I’m obsessed with it and I will devour this book because: Hamilton and Eliza’s story. Yayyy! (Don’t disappoint me pleaseeeeee.)

Side note: The lack of coordination color-wise of these covers side to side makes me frustrated. WHY CAN’T THEY FOLLOW A THEME. I suppose they all have some black?? Except Spindle Fire is like gray?? I CAN’T.

Given to the Sea by Mindy McGinnis (Given Duet #1): Mindy McGinnis has wowed me before with previous works SO I WANT THIS NOW thanks.

Fireworks by Katie Cotugno: I believe I may have read one other book from this author?? But like I can’t remember if it was by this author or not? But I honestly don’t know about this one… it just rubs me the wrong way for some reason. *shrug*

Literally by Lucy Keating: No idea what this one is about! I swear, I go on Goodreads. I just have a tiny little issue of forgetting the synopsis 2 seconds after I read it and being too lazy to reopen and read it again. Oops.

Duels and Deception by Cindy Anstey: Awww what a cute pastel-blue cover with fancy-ish writing! I like it. Do I know what the story is about? Ummmm deception? And duels, duh.

April 18th

Meg & Linus by Hanna Nowinski: I love this cover design!! I WANT THIS NOW. It also seems super cute, so. Even death-and-more-death people need their contemporaries!

The Adjustment by Suzanne Young: I haven’t read this series, but, it’s ending so I might just end up reading the whole series one day! Until then, I hope the people who are reading this series enjoy this. 🙂

April 25th

North of Happy by Adi Alsaid: I actually wasn’t the biggest fan of the other book I read from this author, I believe it was Never Always Sometimes? Something like that. BUT. I am willing to give this author another chance!

The Whole Thing Together by Ann Brashares: I actually read the synopsis again for this one! Because I needed to find the cover. And it sounds like a great book about relationships, family, and self-discovery, so yay!


In a nutshell: April is full of contemporary releases! If you’re a fan of contemporary, like me, I’m sure that news makes you happy. If not, well, there are still plenty of other past releases this year to keep you company! (Seriously, there are SO MANY BOOKS being released my goal of reading them all is rapidly growing more and more impossible… *cries*)

Which of these are you looking forward to?? Do you enjoy contemporaries? Are you being overwhelmed with the copious amounts of books being released?? Let me know in the comments!

The ups and downs of blogging // 2 years blogiversary + birthday!!

Failed moment of the day: I literally spelled my blog title “Book Snakes” in an email and did not realize it for the longest time ever. Oops. (But it kind of sounds good? Is that just me…)

Hello everyone!! Ignore the above. 🙂 I meant to post this yesterday, but I got kind of caught up with things and didn’t get the chance, unfortunately. By things, I mean I turned 19 yesterday??? And it’s my 2 year-blogiversary?? It honestly doesn’t feel any different but somehow I’m older? But like I’m still not down with this whole adulting thing… #helpwhereismychildhood

This isn’t going to be a me-focused post, but a mini timeline:

I started my blog on March 20-something (let’s go with 24th because it’s around the time I started posting more often + saves me from mixing up dates), 2015. I have since then:

  • Survived high school (?!)
  • Started university (SO MUCH WORK but I suppose it’s an accomplishment haha)
  • Continued part-time work (aka I have even less time)
  • Bought too many books
  • Went to Disney World + Universal Studios (HARRY POTTER omg I CAN’TTTTT) and literally had the best time ever
  • Seriously though you can’t imagine how amazing it was.
  • I’m actually in love with Butterbeer and I even got a stuffed Hedwig I love herrrrr
  • I know I never even mentioned this until now?? lol. But I went during the week of Christmas (SO BUSY my god) and it was basically my dream come true in HP World. I adore roller coasters so much and it was heaven.
  • Written 435 posts (including this one)
  • Procrastinated on too many things

Can you believe it’s also been 2 YEARS since I started this blog??? My. mind. can’t. process. this. HOW has it been so long??? (Well, long for me, anyway, seeing how I never thought this would last this much time.) Granted, I didn’t blog for 7 months during this time, which is probably why it doesn’t really feel like 2 years, but nonetheless, it’s been 2 years since I started the blog! I wanted to take a moment to thank you guys, first of all, for sticking through my rambling inconsistent nonsense (who would have thought???), and secondly, for making this whole blogging thing SO WORTHWHILE. ❤ ❤

BUT. Blogging is HARD. I don’t think I’ve ever talked about particularly the things that are difficult, so here we go!

What I struggled with

Finding the time to blog

This is actually something I still struggle with, honestly. What is time and how do we have enough of it to do the 19876 things in our lives??? Someone please offer the answer, because I have no clue. When I first started, I tried to post everyday, and for a few months at a time, it worked. But my quality of posts were not as good, and I ended up giving up on the daily posts thing because life just gets SO BUSY. I occasionally prepare my posts in advance now, but other times, even that proves to be challenging. The posts alone can take so much of my time, it takes at least an hour for most posts, depending on the type… but then you add in making graphics, commenting, and all other blogging things… LIKE I SAID. No time. *cry face*

Writing blog posts

Finding the inspiration and idea to write a blog post–a creative, and interesting one–was actually much harder than I’d expected?? Am I the only one who thinks this?? I love writing discussions, for one, but coming up with a topic?? Can be so hard. Sometimes I’m totally struck by inspiration and it can be easy, but other times I try (and fail) to writing something semi-coherent and enjoyable to read haha. I’ve had to resign myself to this fact: there are very few ‘original’ topics. Most things (such as this pros and cons of blogging, if you will) have already been written about. But, as I learned, it’s your own take on it that makes it an interesting post! But that is hard when the topic just isn’t coming to you… *glares at past blogging slumps* Very familiar with that, unfortunately. 

Blog hopping & commenting

I adore blog hopping and commenting on other blogs!! It’s so much fun and I always love hearing from other bloggers–that interaction is what makes blogging so special, right? What I struggle with is again, time. Time, to not only reply to comments on my own blog, but also leave a comment on the commenter’s blog, and then go blog-hop on and comments on other blogs. I try my best, but sometimes I get behind on my commenting game, and reply to comments a bit late–and then also spend double the amount of time binge-blog hopping and catching up on posts I’ve missed. It’s just so time-consuming though, and I feel so bad that I can’t make it to every blog ahah. If I haven’t stopped by your blog in a while, I promise, I’m trying! 🙂

Getting caught up in the stats

I didn’t expect much when I first started blogging in terms of stats (i.e. followers, likes, comments, etc.) but I think after two years there are things I’ve come to expect from my blog, and I won’t lie, stats kind of really impacted my blogging experience in a negative way sometimes. As a human being, as a perfectionist-in-certain-areas person in particular, being ‘successful’ (in quotations because everyone has different definitions) is kind of a goal. And blogging takes so much work, and effort, that getting, say, lots of views, or lots of comments on your posts feels good, and when you don’t, it can lead, inevitably, to disappointment, which can lead later to a lack of motivation to blog. The easiest thing, I’ve learned, is to not care about the stats as much, but that’s easier said than done. It’s perfectly fine to care about the stats, just need to find that balance so that it doesn’t start to bring you down.

Comparing myself to other bloggers

Is it just me who has looked at other bloggers before “Their blog is so [successful/popular/creative/eye-catching/insert attribute here]” and subconsciously compared it to my own? There are SO MANY absolutely amazing blogs out there that 100% deserve all the praises, and I would be the first one to gush over the many fabulous qualities. I think it’s great to show that support, those bloggers deserve it so much! But then, comes in the creeping thought of “Is mine not good enough?” or “Why isn’t mine as successful?” and that’s when it gets difficult. I’ve been through it. Let me say this: YOUR BLOG IS GREAT, PEOPLE. I truly mean it. Stats, everything, doesn’t matter if you’re happy with your blog. It’s perfectly fine to love other blogs (you totally should!!) but take a moment to just appreciate your blog as well instead of comparing it because that will make you so much happier. ❤ #lessonlearned xD

What makes it all so worth it:

The blogging community

#1 reason, hands down!! My praises for the blogging community are literally endless. The limitless amount of kind, caring and such amazing people that I’ve met during my blogging years make me ask why aren’t people around the world more like them?? Legit, if the world was as lovely as the blogging community, we’d have world peace and so much more love!! ❤ ❤ Even better is the fact that through the blogging community, I’ve gotten the chance to meet and learn, about so many people, so many things, and of course, new books. It feels so great to know that whenever I have a book I adore (or a book I despise), there will ALWAYS be someone there to either fangirl or rant with me. That sense of belonging, got lost to me a few times over my blogging journey (7 months disappearing kind of does that…) but blogging again re-introduced me to the magic that I fell in love with; There is no better feeling than fangirling with another fellow human, a friend who understands you. And I know I’m verging on cheesiness-overload (if I’m not already swimming in it), but I really mean that! The amount of friends I’ve made through blogging has made all of it SO WORTH IT. All of the struggles I mentioned above? Mean nothing, at the end of the day when I think about how great all of you are. THANK YOU for being such lovely human beings. ❤ ❤

Gosh, now I’m all emotional. This is terrible for my rep, guys. Ugh. ❤

There are so many other good sides to blogging, trust me, but I’m really short on time right now and I hope this is enough aha. ❤ ❤ The blogging community is absolutely the best part though?!?


I still can’t believe it’s been 2 years. 

Okay, okay, I’ll get used to it! But thank you once again, and tell me: have you gone through any of these struggles?? How long have you been blogging, and what do you love about it? (Me, obviously, but that’s a given. :P) I love talking to each and every one of you, thank you SO MUCH for just being so supportive. ❤ ❤ A million hugs to all of you!!

Blogging Babbles: Blog design, Self-hosting and other daunting thoughts | DISCUSSION

*everyone double takes at the title as they realize it is not retelling/fairytale/Beauty and the Beast themed*

Yes, you read that right!! I will admit, yes, perhaps I was just a tiny bit obsessed with Beauty and the Beast for the past days leading up to the movie’s release, and had a few* themed posts the past week or so. I do hope you guys enjoyed it!! BUT. I am ready to move forward! My 2nd blogiversary is coming up soon**–though I need help deciding whether it counts because I didn’t blog for 7 months last year???–which means I’ve got a more blogging focus going right now. (You can tell I’m really into the “theme” idea here…).

*3, to be exact. Not very many, in the grand scheme of things. I was contemplating writing a post this time on why you should watch the movie itself, [which I adored by the way] but I figured a post of me screeching about how amazing it was wouldn’t be very helpful. So. JUST GO WATCH IT. And then come to squeal with me on the blog or on Twitter. Ahem.

**I can’t believe it’s been 2 years?????!! BUT. It’s a bit more complicated because I wasn’t sure if I was going to count this because I took a 7-month hiatus last year where I didn’t post anything??? I literally was DEAD. I’m scarred just looking at the HUGE BLANK in my blogging calendar for that time. Is my blogiversary even valid right now if technically it’s been 2 years – (minus) 7 months of blogging???? HELPPPPPP.

The topic you see here today is something that I had wondered/asked myself and was conflicted about for quite some time: Changing your blog’s design and the big question: self-hosting–Should you do it, the process, pros and cons, etc. AND I AM SO CONFLICTED. So let’s discuss! (Aka helpppppppp me I am a smol uncertain bean here)

The great self-host debacle begins!

*sigh* I make it sound so much more interesting than it is.

Why it is tempting.

My blog, has had pretty much the same look ever since I started blogging; the Visual theme offered by WordPress.com. A dark background with white lettering. What you see now is what it’s pretty much what’s always been, and there’s not really anything I can do to change its apperance. And I think that’s one of the things that has me thinking about the daunting idea of self-hosting, because it offers more freedom and control over blog design and how it looks. 

See, I still really like the theme I have now, but I’ve really been juggling with the idea of having a white background as a change instead of the dark one I have now. I do like it, because I feel like it’s unique in the sense that not many people (that I follow or have seen, anyway) have this theme, or a dark background. But even aside from that, I liked how it looked. But a light background is tempting because it feels so much more positive and uplifting than the dark one I have and also several people said they might like it better… It could bring a much-needed change to my blog?? I don’t know. *shrug*

So, I scroll through the free themes WordPress.com has to offer, preview a bunch of them, spend too much time screeching in despair, and I can’t find anything new, that suits me. I found a few themes that I like, but have been used so many times it doesn’t feel like me or feels like I’d be copying other bloggers haha. Which is silly, I know, but something in my head all the same. Others in theory are really nice but lack some of the qualities I’m looking for.

There’s also the option of WordPress.com’s Premium themes, before we hop on the self-hosting wagon. I’ve looked through some of those as well and although they’re nice, I couldn’t find anything that fit either. Shhhh I’m not being that picky. Don’t get me wrong, they’re really nice and I haven’t seen all of them, but at the moment, I’m still indifferent.

Which brings me to self-hosting! The two main reasons why it’s tempting to me at the moment: a) freedom over several things, but especially blog design, i.e. more options to play around with and b) my own blog name. Aka no “.wordpress.com” after your blog’s title URL. It’s nothing I can’t deal with, but I’d love to have my URL just be “booksnacks.com”, and self-hosting would allow me to do that.*

*I’ve also heard you can also buy your domain to get rid of the wordpress.com?? Or buy the URL?? Something like that? So it would still be WordPress hosting your site, but you can get rid of the ‘wordpress.com’?? Correct me if I’m wrong! But that’s definitely another idea as well.

The perks of self-hosting (WordPress.org), in a nutshell:

  • Full control over blog design, formatting, theme, etc.
  • More media space (I think?)
  • Option of monetizing your blog via ads
  • Basically lots of freedom.
  • Own domain (no wordpress.com)

There is a bunch more stuff about self-hosting vs not at these links, if you want to check them out: Difference between WordPress.com and .orgpros and cons, a helpful comparison.

To play the devil’s advocate…

Aka my fears and questions show their little heads

  • “What if you lose your posts while moving over to a different platform??” Okay, the earlier ones can disappear into the darkness but I have worked hard on the rest of the posts?? I poured my soul into them*, but mostly so much TIME and it would kind of suck if that all disappeared. o.O
  • “What if I lose followers/views?” I mean, it’s not that much of a big deal, but it would kind of suck if that happened?? Being a very lazy person, I like the convenience of having to only press one button in order to follow wordpress.com blogs, and the WordPress Reader is how many people find my blog so like…?? Again, not a big deal but it’s in your head all the same, you know?
  • “Do I even want to self-host?” Remember me being a very lazy person? Yeah, well seeing how switching to self-hosted would be I’d have to put in all that extra work and time keeping the blog in proper condition. And I don’t have enough time as it is…??
  • “I finally got the hang of this WordPress thing?? And self-hosting seems so much harder??” Correct me if I’m wrong, but self-hosted blog require more work, no? And definitely a lot of new things to grasp and learn about. I know there are tons of articles out there helping out with that sort of thing, but still. New. Concepts. #notime
  • “I can’t really pay for it??” I mean, I can but that’s an added expense that could’ve been spent on a) chocolate b) BOOKSSSSS c) new fuzzy socks or d) Bath and Body Works and e) MORE BOOKS.
  • Tbh why am I even having this discussion??
  • Cause the whole concept of self-hosting depends on PAYING.
  • And I just don’t have the finances for that?? #studentlife

BUT. It is still definitely that I’m interested in mostly because I want to change my theme but I can’t find anything for free that suits what I want and self-hosting would offer more freedom? As well as the fact that having a dot com url would be kind of nice. Yet WordPress.com is free and I have to do less work so. #nice And it’s also a great community and it’s easy to interact with others (via Reader)? UGH. SO MANY STRUGGLES. #halp


But what are your thoughts?? Have you thought about self-hosting? Have you changed your theme before? (Should I change mine??) If you are self-hosted, how is your experience? (Also does a blogiversary count if it’s technically been 2 years since you started but you hadn’t blogged for 7 months in that time??????)

Let’s chat!

What I love about Beauty and the Beast + Retellings | THE MOVIE IS OUT!!

Beauty and the Beast is finally OUT!! *cue screaming* Or for others, will be out very soon?!! I actually watched it yesterday and I loved it so much!! To be expected of course, but oh my gosh, the anticipation for this movie, the expectations were so high and ajrlkwjgwjgwinencksanwhenjfhsjns I’m just so glad this movie was made the way it was and MET MY EXPECTATIONS. *squeals*

And that’s perhaps a post for another time, but today, continuing my little B&B theme going on, I wanted to do a post about what I love about Beauty and the Beast! I’ve talked before about loving retellings, but I never discussed what I love about the fairytale this was all inspired by?!?? So here we go!!

1. Belle is kind of fabulous

I relate to Belle so much?? Okay, fine, I relate to her love for her books. I can’t exactly relate to anything else, but BOOKS. I love books + Belle loves books = I love Belle for loving books! I also love her dedication and love for her father, it’s really sweet! We don’t see many positive parent-child relationships in the earlier Disney princess movies–and side note: the live-action movie represented it better than the animated one in my opinion!! She’s also brave and kind, and this is highlighted even more in the live-action movie. (Whoops, this is becoming less of my thoughts on the original fairytale and more on the live-action movie!!)

2. The Beast

Okay, so he’s a total… um BEAST?? And he is quite horrible 70% of the time, but the relationship between Belle and the Beast is a pretty big factor as to why so many love the story–albeit the fact that there are definitely problematic issues with it. But he goes through a sweet journey and has nice growth #thingsreadersappreciate. No joke, everyone is fawning over the relationship between him and Belle and I’m just here like I’m glad he’s not as much of a jerk at the end #truth. But I did love the beast, don’t get me wrong haha.

3. LOVE (for the library, obviously.)

DO YOU SEE THAT LIBRARY??!?? THAT IS MY LOVE RIGHT THERE. ❤ ❤ Imagine having a library like that??! Filled with alllllllll the pretty books I adore… #goals. Booklover’s dream right here. Forget the prince, I want his library?? Give it to meeeeeee.

4. Belle and Beast’s Relationship

I’m not here to discuss the Stockholm Syndrome debacle and all, because a) I don’t feel qualified haha and b) that’s a whole other issue that is not the point of what I’m trying to say haha. What I love about their relationship is the growth and the development, and the beauty in finding the beauty within. Don’t judge a book by its cover and all, right? Seeing the Beast change and become more caring, and less beastly haha, and Belle falling for his kind side (and not the abusive side, mind you) was actually very sweet!! ❤ (And it was so lovely in the live-action movie!!!!)

5. Lumiere, Cogsworth, etc give me life.

I’m kind of in love with all of them?? Haha they’re just so much fun and adorable and growing up, they’re definitely one of the reasons I loved the movie. Call me childlike if you want, but they’re just as precious and just as much part of the story as anyone else!!

6. Tale as old as time.

Such nostalgia! Such memories! Beauty and the Beast (and just Disney in general) was such a big part of my life growing up haha and there’s just that emotional attachment! They all have this aspect of magic to them and I just think, that, paired with all the other elements, makes it so memorable–and so beloved. The theme, the characters, the story, all of it, is just so special.

Retellings for your Beauty and the Beast cravings!

Okayyyyy so confession!! As much as I’m obsessed with Beauty and the Beast, and obsessed with retellings, I haven’t actually read many retellings of it? I know! #sad BUT. I shall read more of them!! And I have collected a bunch of them, as many as I could find, for future reference and for you all to either a) add them to your own monstrous TBR, b) screech at me to read one of them that you adored or c) join me in my despair as we realize the lack of B&B in my life *the horror!!*

Read

  • A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas: An obvious pick, much? Haha. One of the most popular B&B retellings out there, I think. It’s New-Adult, I believe, and has some steamy scenes, but that’s the extent of it! I really loved this one.
  • Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge: I liked this one! I think?? It’s been a while since I read it and I’m not exactly sure anymore haha. It definitely had its issues, though (like any book) but it was still pretty good! The main character, Nyx, was kind of annoying, but I liked the world and the concept.
  • Beastly by Alex Flinn: Aha… um okay. Well. Didn’t like this one very much. Or at all. Which is so sad!! Because it’s Beauty and the Beast and everything but like…. I couldn’t connect to the characters much at all? The narrator, the Beast, was actually SO ANNOYING and didn’t get any better, and I just didn’t care about him at all. So disappointing!

Unread

  • Of Beast and Beauty by Stacey Jay: I haven’t read this one, but it sounds really good?? It  was released 4 years ago, and I’ve heard really great things.
  • Hunted by Megan Spooner: This was released a few days ago, I believe, and I can’t wait to read this one!! Out of all the retellings, I think this is the most recently-released and most anticipated one for me.
  • As Old As Time by Liz Braswell: This one actually seems really good as well! I definitely want to pick it up sometime.

That’s it for this post! I LOVE Beauty and the Beast so much, and I just wanted to share a few reasons why, though I suppose a lot of it goes unsaid! 🙂 By the way, the movie was AMAZING and I now am going to squeal at all of you to go watch it!! If you couldn’t tell by my blog posts recently, I’m obsessed with this and the movie was so great as well so basically I’m screeching in happiness.
But I digress!! What do you love about Beauty and the Beast? What are you *gasp* not a fan of? (It’s okay, I can take it. Mostly.) What retellings of it have you read/recommend for me to read? Have you watched the movie/plan to watch the movie (the correct answer to the latter is a solid yes btw)? Let me know in the comments!!
Lots of love!