Beauty and the Beast Book Tag // Only a few more days!! Shh, I’m not obsessed.

Another Beauty and the Beast-themed post? Why, yes, yes it is. Hush, no, I’m not obsessed with Beauty and the Beast…! But seriously, I haven’t done a book tag in SUCH a long time and this one is perfectly-themed. ❤ I was tagged by Emily @ Embuhleeliest–thank you so much! (My current obsession with Beauty and the Beast is being satisfied with this tag, pretty much so I AM GRATEFUL.)

Rules:

  • Thank the person who tagged you.
  • Mention the creator; Kirsty at Kirsty and the Cat Read.
  • Match a book to each of the songs/characters below.
  • Tag as many people as you like.


“Tale As Old As Time” – A popular theme, trope or setting you will never get bored of reading

Does the sassy/sarcastic/witty character count as a trope?? I say it does. It’s very common, I think? I will never get bored of reading it though?! Looking back on my reads, so many of my favourite books have at least one, if not more, witty character and I LOVE THEM. They just bring so much light and just always bring a smile to my face. I just get all the banter via them and it’s so amazing, especially if you love the characters. Some of my favourite books with this trope:

Oh my preciouussssss children; Will, Kaz, Nina, Wylan, Jesper & Co, Blue & the Raven Boys (!!!!!!!!!!!)

I can’t seem to think of any contemporary novels right off the bat, which is a problem… #moresassycharactersplz

Belle – A book you brought for its beautiful cover that’s just as beautiful inside too.

The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi

JUST LOOK AT IT. It’s so beautiful it makes me want to cryyyyy. ❤ ❤ It seems to be a hit-or-miss among readers, but for me it was definitely a hit! I didn’t fall in love with it as much as others, granted, however I did love the beautiful writing and other aspects of it, which is great because THAT COVER. If I didn’t love the story it would be such a shame haha. (Am I the only one who kind of adored Kamala more than the main character though…)

Beast – A book you didn’t expect much from but pleasantly surprised you

Starflight by Melissa Landers

Prior to picking up this book, I had read the author’s previous book, Alienated, which I was not the biggest fan of, so I’ll admit, I didn’t have high hopes for this one? I really shouldn’t judge on past experiences? But, I was wary anyway. Fortunately it seems like I had nothing to be wary of, because I ended up loving this book! I fell in love with the characters the plot was exciting, and it was just a really great experience. I need to read Starfall now though, asap!

Gaston – A book everyone loves that you don’t

Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard

I wouldn’t say everyone loves this?? Because I do know a fair amount of people who were disappointed/didn’t enjoy this book. However, I think this series in general has a relatively large fanbase and many people did love this one (which is awesome!! GO ENJOY BOOKS, children) but, unfortunately, I just couldn’t help but be disappointed. Mare was so annoying, and there were just many things that didn’t click for me (that I can’t remember specifically because #terriblememory here whoops). I’m holding out hope for King’s Cage though? PRAY FOR ME.

Lefou – A loyal sidekick you can’t help but love more than their counterpart

Sevro from Red Rising series by Pierce Brown

This one was SO hard because generally, I love the sidekick less or equally as much as the main character? But guys, SEVRO. Don’t get me wrong, I loved Darrow, but SEVRO IS AMAZING. I loved him so so so much, and as much as I was concerned with everyone’s fate, his was one that I especially looked out for because guys, he is so great. So loyal, so brave, so fierce, witty and aghhhh. He deserves all the love!! ❤

Mrs Potts, Chip, Lumière & Cogsworth – A book that helped you through a difficult time or that taught you something valuable

A List of Cages by Robin Roe

This book didn’t exactly help me through a difficult time, but it did teach me something so valuable, and SO IMPORTANT. Julian’s story was so heartbreaking, but showed the value of kindness, of friendship, of love, and the profound impact a person can have on others–see?? SO VALUABLE ahhhhh I loved it so much. ❤ ❤

“Something There” – A book or a series that you weren’t into at first but picked up towards the end

Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes

I haven’t yet read the fifth book, but I really enjoyed Frozen Tides. I got onto a rough start with the first book, mostly due to the characters, and the very cliché plot. Although the clichés didn’t necessarily diminish as the books went on, I did get more drawn to the characters and the action kept me invested, so that’s a plus! I’m looking forward to reading Crystal Storm, though at the moment it’s not exactly a priority… #strugglesoftoomanybooks

“Be Our Guest” – A fictional character you’d love to have over for dinner

Kell and Rhy from Shades of Magic by V.E. Schwab

Did you really think I’d get through this post without mentioning them?? Haha. Nope. But seriously, having these two over for dinner would be so amazing?? Rhy’s sense of humor and charisma is SO GREAT (*cry as I am reminded he is not real*) and KELLLL. ❤ ❤ Why aren’t they reallllllll. *cries some more*


That’s it for this post!! Join me in my B&B-obsessed party (or perhaps not because it is very difficult to escape once you have–I’m warning you!) and let me know your thoughts! What book is your Belle/Beast/Gaston/Lefou/etc? Who would you invite to dinner? (Or you could join me and Kell & Rhy, of course. :P) Happy Tuesday!

EDIT: I didn’t tag anyone for this, but if you want to do this tag, GO FOR IT. I take back any of my warnings, come join me in my B&B party and link back to this post if you do the tag. And if you have done it already, be sure to send me the link down below so I can come check it out. 🙂

Friendships, Family, Food & Diversity | The Inexplicable Logic of My Life REVIEW

Hello and happy slightly-belated book birthday to this novel! I hope you’re all doing well. ❤ I wanted to have this review up yesterday when it was released, but unfortunately, life got in the way.

But anyway! It’s been a long time since I read something like this book. It was a really nice read. I finished it pretty quickly, as well, considering the fact that it had a very slow paced plot. But, despite the plot, what I loved most was the characters and how it focused on them. That was what made this book so wonderful to read. Although, the general consensus around this book according to other bloggers is that Aristotle and Dante was better–I can’t vouch for this, personally, as I have never read it, but if you have read Aristotle and Dante and loved it, your best bet is probably to go into this one with lowered expectations. Let’s just get into the full review, shall we?

Disclaimer: I received an e-ARC thanks to Netgalley for review purposes! ❤ All opinions are my own. Oh, and all quotes mentioned are retrieved from the ARC, and may be changed in the final copy. Just a sidenote! 

the-inexplicable-logic-of-my-lifeThe Inexplicable Logic of My Life by Benjamin Alire Sáenz

Publication Date: March 7th 2017
Publisher: Clarion Books
Genre(s): Contemporary, Young-Adult
Series Status: N/A–Stand Alone
Page Count: 464
Source & Format: Netgalley eARC

Synopsis from Goodreads:

From the multi-award-winning author of Aristotle and Dante Discover, the Secrets of the Universe comes a gorgeous new story about love, identity, and families lost and found.

Sal used to know his place with his adoptive gay father, their loving Mexican-American family, and his best friend, Samantha. But it’s senior year, and suddenly Sal is throwing punches, questioning everything, and realizing he no longer knows himself. If Sal’s not who he thought he was, who is he?

This humor-infused, warmly humane look at universal questions of belonging is a triumph.

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There were actually multiple mentions of food and TACOS in this book as well… Aka I am very hungry right now.

Features an AMAZING fictional father

“He said, ‘Every time I look into your blue eyes. Every time I hear you laugh. Every day, when I hear your voice, I thank God for you. Yeah, Salvador, I believe in God.'”  

I’m not exaggerating when I say that Sal’s father, Vicente Silva, is one of the best fictional fathers I have ever seen. He was an amazing father who had such a deep bond with not only his son, but everyone around him, and that was so beautiful. He was there for Sal the whole time, for Sal’s best friend Sam, for their new friend Fito. He was there for each and every single one of them, offering them comfort and discipline. And love, my god, so much love. My heart hurts from how much I loved his love for everyone. He shows strength, in who he is, who he believes, what he does, in everything he does but still had fears and uncertainty just like every person. His and Sal’s and his and Sam’s moments were truly amazing, along with pretty much everyone else he met. I’m not exaggerating at all when I say he truly is a notable father–and a notable person–that deserves all the recognition it can get. Because fathers like these, in novels? A rare gem. 

“I happen to be gay. I don’t think that makes me a faggot. I’m also a Mexican American. I don’t think that makes me a taco bender. I don’t think that makes a beaner. I don’t think that makes me a spic. And I don’t think that makes me an illegal.” 

CAN SOMEONE GIVE THIS MAN AN AWARD PLEASE?

No romance, but lots of love.

Apologies to all romance lovers out there! No romance in this one, but that was one of its strong points. I’ve already mentioned before having more books with little to no romance and well, here’s this one! I think it’s really great what the author did here; not all teens find their soulmates in high school (ahem. Example: me), and focusing on aspects like love for family and friends, made this book refreshing and incredibly heartwarming. There was no shortage in love though; what this book lacked in romance, it more than made up for it with its focus on the love between Vicente and Sal, Sal and Mima, Sal and Sam’s platonic and wonderful friendship, Sal & Sam and Maggie, the dog, Sal, Sam and Fito, Sal and his uncle, and the list goes on and on. The family dynamics in Sal’s family was so beautiful, and I can not express how much I adored them. Family is SO important, and I loved the emphasis on that in this book. 

Speaking of non-romantic relationships; the friends in this book are actually #goals. Individually, my feelings on them vary, but Sal, Sam, and later Fito have such an adorable and supportive friendship that I adored. Sam and Sal’s friendship particularly stuck out to me; in them, I saw elements and phrases that I could either relate to with my own friends or just that I loved reading. And! They. Only. Stay. Friends!! NO I’M NOT JOKING. Yes, I’ve come to answer your prayers. Jk, but I’m a strong advocate for more female-male friendships, and this book featured one of the best ones I’ve read in a long time. Sam and Sal were so supportive of each other, so close and loving it made my heart hurt. Each of them had their own demons to battle, but they each had each other (among other people, of course) to push them to do so.

Sometimes family and friends are one of the best and biggest forms of love, and I loved how this book focused on those aspects of life. 

Other tasty aspects…

  • THE FOOD. This is the only one that actually makes sense in relation to the above statement. There were much tacos and tortillas and enchiladas and…. now I’m hungry. Help.
  • I didn’t get to mention my love for Fito!! Because I did love him. SO MUCH. He was so precious and did not deserve 90% of the things that happened to him. Probably one of my top favorite characters in this one, despite the fact that he isn’t exactly a main character until about halfway or something through the book.
  • Oh, I also should probably mention Sal, the main character! I did like him as well, he was SO sweet, and I loved the love he had for his family and Sam, and Fito. His relationship with his Mima was very nice as well, along with him and his father. ❤ Though, I did get exasperated with his anger-related issues at several points, it was okay.
  • Beautiful writing! It was simple but lyrical and it was lovely to read. I wouldn’t say I flew through the book because of it, but it did seem to make things seem less long, I think. Or maybe that was just me. Though, I will say, it’s kind of repetitive and the sentences can be pretty choppy. I don’t think this bothered me that much, but I know it can be a pet peeve for others aha.
  • I adored the diversity!! The book is filled with POC and queer characters, which I loved! Sal is white, but his adoptive father is Mexican, and Sal basically identifies as a Mexican and that was so precious.
I’m trying to make the headers a bit more related to my blog title!! I TRIED, OKAY. 😛
  •  Okay, so I mentioned I loved Sal and Sam’s friendship?? And I did, it was amazing. But Sam herself… eh, not as much. Sam’s development is great, however, I felt like her character the majority of the time tried too hard to not be like ‘other girls’. And that was annoying, because she ended up being a character who had no female friendships, instead calling them bitches, etc. *sad face* It was quite frustrating, really, because I really did want to enjoy her character more (she kind of shows up the entire novel, so like…)–and she had so much potential but… *sigh*
  • Things were too… similar for all three of the teens. Specifically in the mom department, which seemed all too… I don’t know. Unrealistic? Unlikely? I mean, I suppose it is possible but it seemed all too convenient and more of a plot device to have the characters have something in common that I could not 100% buy. #Justamethingprobabaly
  • Another thing that makes me quite.. conflicted, is the stereotypical and offensive statements in the novel. Things like “For a gay guy, my dad was pretty straight.” or “One thing about Sam was that she didn’t throw like a girl*.” and several other phrases. I just found them so unnecessary? Perhaps it was to show the naivety of the main character or something, I don’t know, but whatever the case may be, you could take those out and it would change nothing of the story, characters, theme, whatever. Nothing. It was just so unnecessary. 
    *Why is this still a thing?? Albeit in a fictional novel, but like still?
  • NO PLOT. And I know, it’s a character-driven novel, which is great, but like, 400+ pages is a lot to go through with a slow-paced plot. I do think you should be prepared for that, or else you’re going to be quite bored and disappointed with the plot. I mean, you might still be bored with the plot, but still, it’s not terrible, just it might be easier if you’re prepared with that info, haha.

Overall…

An enjoyable read! I really did like it, problems aside. Though from what I’ve seen, this is a lot of a hit-or-miss situation, most reviews I’ve seen have either given this book 4 stars, or 2. So. A lot of people have also expressed how this book does not live up to Aristotle and Dante, so if you have read that book, just a heads up! For me, personally, I have not yet read Ari and Dante, and I think that helped a bit if only to have more reasonable expectations aha. As a recap: I loved the focus on non-romantic love such as friends and family, the diversity, the FOOD of course, and especially Sal’s father. It truly was wonderful to read about that. I wasn’t the biggest fan of Sam’s, and there were phrases that were totally unnecessary, but overall, I do think it’s worth a read if you enjoy family dynamics, and character-driven novels. 


Wow, that was a long review! I tried out a slightly different format for my review today and I think it caused me to revert back to my rambling review days…

But tell me! What do you think of this novel? Have you read Ari and Dante yet? Did you like it? If you haven’t read it, tell me so I don’t feel so alone haha. 😛 What are your thoughts on problematic phrases in books? Any other books you know of with strong family dynamics and/or friendship and diversity? Do you plan on reading this book? Let me know in the comments, don’t let my frantic 2AM typing go in vain aha. Hope you have a lovely day! ❤

How to capture readers’ hearts A Darker Shades of Magic style

A Conjuring of Light is OUT!! Ahhhhh so many people have already started reading it, and I am DYING to read it, guys. UGH. I’m currently in the middle of my re-read of the the second book, A Gathering of Shadows, which is the only reason I haven’t picked up ACOL yet. #bookwormstruggles And I absolutely LOVE IT but I am so ready for the third book. I can’t wait to read it so I can do a joint review (… more like fangirling post, probably…) of books 2 and 3!

THAT ASIDE. I wanted to do something V.E. Schwab/Shades of Magic series related, which is why we’re here, as you can tell from the title of the post. I recently finished re-reading the first book of the series (and I loved it so much akskjfjkgnjchskkkansr) which is what this post is based on, essentially. Reading A Darker Shade of Magic was absolutely amazing, I loved it even more than I already did if that’s even possible. Pretty much none of my feelings changed except I loved Lila a lot more than I did the first time haha.

But I digress! I’m terrible at staying on track, oh my god. I suppose you can call this a review of sorts–although I already wrote one the first time I read this–but simply put: A Darker Shades of Magic is a lovely, torturous device of a book designed to crush and capture your hearts. I’m warning you. But also pushing you to read it immediately if you haven’t already because what bookworm doesn’t want their heart crushed? Psh, brb as I try to repair my fragile heart…

So alas, finally, let’s get into how to capture readers’ hearts A Darker Shade of Magic style! And don’t worry, this is fully SPOILER-FREE. You’re welcome, to the belated readers who have not read this yet. 😉

how-to-capture-readers-hearts-adsom-style

1. Create multiple worlds with vivid descriptions and magic.

It is an absolute given, if a book has multiple worlds and magic that you have captured at least one poor bookworm heart. (Mine, obviously.) Not to mention having vivid descriptions that make me feel as if I’m IN the book without having any threat of dying and other mild inconveniences?? SOLD. Who wouldn’t love that, honestly.

ADSOM reference: MULTIPLE LONDONS. Is that genius or what? Okay, so Grey London (‘Dull London’), White London (‘Creepy London’) and Black London (‘Dead London’) are not exactly tourist destinations* but Red London is to die for (!!) and nonetheless, they’re all the sign of amazing world-building.

adsom-londons-map

Even at night, the river shone red. As Kell stepped from the bank of one London onto the bank of another, the black slick of the Thames was replaced by the warm, steady glow of the Isle. It glittered like a jewel, lit from within, a ribbon of constant light unraveling through Red London. A source. A vein of power.

LOOK AT THAT BEAUTIFUL DESCRIPTION.

*I mean, if I could just stop by them all as some kind of invisible side character for a while and be able to escape at a moment’s notice, I would totally do it just because they sound so EPIC, albeit very very dangerous.

2. A subtle, but swoon-worthy ship, YES.

Slow-burn romances are one of my absolute FAVOURITES. The feeling you get, reading a book and that warm feeling you get when you know two characters like eachother but they’re dancing around their feelings and also the banter and the sweet moments that slowly develop the relationship… so many emotions ahhhh.

ADSOM reference: Not even a spoiler because everyone can see this from a mile away: Kell and Lila are such an OTP. Their banter is adorable and the fact that they both have each other’s backs and are constantly saving each other is just so awesome and they just work so well together and agh no words. Such a perfect ship. What’s even better is that it doesn’t overshadow the main story at all, and instead is the perfect addition to the rest of the story.

“He would see her again. He knew he would. Magic bent the world. Pulled it into shape. There were fixed points. Most of the time they were places. But sometimes, rarely, they were people. For someone who never stood still, Lila felt like a pin in Kell’s world. One he was sure to snag on.”

SHIP. My heart is SO attached to this.

3. Have the characters stab all the things?!

Disclaimer: I am not crazy or sadistic when I say this! LOL. It will: a) Create awesome action scenes, b) show off your character’s fighting skills, c) be lots of fun to read (aka very very stressful because your character will most likely get hurt) and d) create much tension and suspense.

ADSOM reference: Now I can’t give away too much because #spoilers but let me just say, there was A LOT OF STABBING. And magicking with the aim to kill. So. I mentioned this in my first review, but A Darker Shade of Magic is not for the squeamish people! But if you enjoy fantasy and don’t mind stabbing and fight scenes, you know how EPIC a story can be with the right battle scenes. Omg. This book had so much stabbing and fighting and aghhhhh it totally made my heart race but it was SO GOOD.

Pretty accurate depiction of my own heart tbh when I'm reading...
Pretty accurate depiction of my own heart tbh when I’m reading…

4. Much sass and banter!

This may seem small in the grand scheme of things, but trust me when I say that sass and banter can be one of the BEST things ever. Besides, it can also: a) develop character (sassy pirates and princes, yes please) b) create a deep fondness in the reader for the characters because banter = fun amidst pain and c) make Analee very very happy.

ADSOM reference: There are so many little quips from the characters that I loved and made the reading experience so much fun! I lived for the quips and lines from Rhy, Kell and Lila omg. So perfect.

“Delilah Bard,” she said. “We’ve met before. And you looked worse.”
Rhy laughed silently. “I apologize for anything I might have done. I was not myself.”
“I apologize for shooting you in the leg,” said Lila. “I was myself entirely.”
Rhy broke into his perfect smile. “I like this one,” he said to Kell. “Can I borrow her?”
“You can try,” said Lila, raising a brow. “But you’ll be a prince without his fingers.”

GO LILA!

5. Have an epic bromance.

Bromances are very very important. *nods* They can make you either a) fall in love with the characters in said bromance or b) make you love said characters even more. In both situations, a beautifully written bromance = powerful emotions rivaled only by chocolate (of course) and perhaps a romantic ship. 😉

ADSOM reference: Kell and Rhy are one of the most amazing bromances everrrrrrr!! There is just something so beautiful and so adorable and so heartwarming about brotherly ties, and theirs was no exception.

Rhy sighed (…) [before he finally said] “There is nothing I would not give you.”
Kell’s chest ached. “I know.”
“You are my brother. My closest friend.”
“I know.”
“Then put an end to this foolishness, before I do.”
Kell managed a small, tired smile. “Careful, Rhy,” he said. “You’re beginning to sound like a king.”
Rhy’s mouth quirked. “One day I will be. And I need you there beside me.”
Kell smiled back. “Believe me. There’s no place I’d rather be.” It was the truth.

MY HEART. Captured and crushed by these two. ❤


So! That’s all I have for this post aha. Let me finish this off by saying: y’all should go read the Shades of Magic series IMMEDIATELY if you haven’t already. (#nopressure psh) And let me brb, need to go piece back my heart in preparation for ACOL to break it again. Ahem.
No, but really, I hope you enjoyed this post! ❤ A Darker Shade of Magic is an amazing book, and the series only gets better from there. If you’ve read this book; what do you think on my tips on how to capture a reader’s heart ADSOM style? Have you read the rest of the series? (No spoilers for ACOL please!) If you haven’t read the series, do you plan on it? (The right answer is yes, btw.) (Jk.) Let me know your thoughts!
Happy Friday!

Until the Next Meal, Analee

Things my bookish OTPs would do on VALENTINE’S DAY!

Hi, everyone! Happy belated Valentine’s Day!! ❤ I hope your day was great. 🙂 This post was actually planned to go up on Valentine’s Day itself, but obviously, that didn’t happen, as I didn’t get it finished in time–but I still wanted to share this, and didn’t want to wait ’till next year haha.

So most of you know, I have my bookish OTPs and I love my ships. I have many, many of them, and I won’t be including them all, but here are some of the things I thought a few of my bookish OTPs might do on Valentine’s Day!

What my bookish OTPs would do on valentine's day

Annabeth & Percy

Percy and Annabeth

“You promised, Seaweed brain. We would not get separated! Ever again!”

-House of Hades

In case you didn’t know, Annabeth & Percy are from the Percy Jackson series and also one of my most favourite bookish couples of ever??? Just fyi. They’ve been through so much, and the amount of Percabeth moments that have captured my heart ahhhh. But wait, we’re talking about Valentine’s Day plans, right. 😉

  • They will totally visit a) Camp Half-Blood and/or tour b) New Rome
  • Reason: Both of those places hold so much history for them, and I can totally see them having the sweetest and most amazing time in either of the two places.
  • Or, they visit Manhatten and have a romantic dinner at a fancy restaurant
  • LOL, nah, probably at a park or something because Percy forgot about Valentine’s Day
  • And stumbles a lot and improvises greatly when Annabeth asks about it
  • But then steals everyone’s hearts with his beautiful, thoughtful, heartwarming declaration of love (lol) to Annabeth
  • Though I vote for a recreation of the underwater lake kiss (!!!) (PLEASE THIS SHOULD HAPPEN) (!!!).
  • I’m totally calm about this.
  • That moment when you have no romantic life of your own so you obsess over a hypothetical situation for a fictional character
  • What is my life.

Kaz and Inej

“I’m a business man,” he’d told her. “No more, no less.”
“You’re a thief, Kaz.”
“Isn’t that what I just said?”

-Six of Crows

Can we please just admire the perfection–actually the perfection of the imperfection that is Kaz and Inej. (Kinej? Inaz?? Kanej???) They stole pretty much everyone’s hearts, and I’m telling you, if you haven’t read the amazingness that is the Six of Crows duology, you are missing out on so so so much. Namely this, but also so much more. But I digress.

Kaz and Inej’s plan for Valentine’s Day (as decided by me):

  • Another awesome business venture featuring Kaz: Scheming face™
  • Aka a heist and thieving of some sort
  • This is Kaz, after all
  • Very romantic.
  • Also waffles.
  • And heartbreaking but sweet moment between Inej and Kaz. ❤ ❤
  • More scheming face, because it’s KAZ
  • And wraithing. Possibly. And wraithing is totally a word. Psh.
  • Let me just say: such extreme contrast between this couple and the one above it! Yet I ship both?? THEY ARE MY CHILDREN. Except not. But whatever, don’t need to get into the technicalities.

Cress and Thorne

“Captain?”
“Yeah?”
“Do you think it was destiny that brought us together?”
He squinted and, after a thoughtful moment, shook his head. “No. I’m pretty sure it was Cinder.”

-Cress

Now, don’t get me wrong, I adore all the ships from the Lunar Chronicles series (if you haven’t started that series by the way, what are you waiting for?!) but I wanted to just focus on one of the couples because I didn’t want to overwhelm you with my nonsensical shrieking. Ahem. And Cress & Thorne are too cute to not mention!

Cress and Thorne’s Epic Valentine’s Day Journey™ features:

  • Cress and Thorne. Obviously.
  • Epic voyages through time and space
  • Nope, just space, they’re not time travelers oops.
  • But still epic voyages!
  • To tour earth, which actually, can be not-so-terrible in a fictional world where there is no longer any war or awful leaders of countries.
  • Because Cress always wanted to visit places on earth and Thorne is a sweetie pie
  • (Even if he tries to hide it)
  • But he makes Valentine’s Day perfect for Cress
  • + Thorne witty remarks YES.
  • Sidenote: Cress likes traveling. Analee likes travelling, therefore, Analee = Cress
  • So it will also feature me, pretty much.
  • Or it has featured me because this is a belated post and Valentine’s Day has already happened.
  • My logic is outstanding.

Lila and Kell

I just had to include this omg. THIS IS <3
I just had to include this omg. THIS IS ❤

GUYS A CONJURING OF LIGHT IS ALMOST OUT *cue squeals of excitement* I am so excited for this book, you guys have no idea (actually now you may have an inkling). I adored A Gathering of Shadows, but that ending was tortureeeeee I need this book so so much. Okay, so not the point of this post, but 4 days!! YES. The Shades of Magic series is so amazing, and ahhhhh okay. Done.

Their Valentine’s Day will most probably go horribly wrong, given their luck BUT it would be awesome anyway:

  • Ideally, Kell and Lila are safe in Red London, magic is flourishing, all my favorite characters are safe, and they get to stay together, for longer than 2 minutes without some threat overhead.
  • So basically what I’m praying A Conjuring of Light will end up to be. (Don’t dieeeeee please)
  • But also Kell and Lila have their own adventure, and Lila gets to properly explore Red London for enjoyment
  • They will dance at a ball and will have all the witty banter and sassy comebacks between the two
  • Probably lots of pirating and magiking.
  • #ValentinesDayGoals
  • Lila and Kell finding peace, finally and sharing a heartwarming moment but still super sassy because that’s how these two roll. 😉
  • I just need A Conjuring of Light right now *sob*
  • 4 more days. We got this.

Happy belated Valentine’s Day, once again! ❤ What do you guys think of these hypothetical Valentine’s Day dates? What do you think your OTPs would do on that day? Let’s discuss. 🙂
Lots of love!

Until the Next Meal, Analee

 

Blogging: Expectations vs. Reality // Wherein I get too real about the harsh truths

THE DARK TRUTHS OF BLOGGING SHALL BE REVEALED TODAY. Dun dun dunnnnnn.

Am I being a tad dramatic? Maybe. I like to think of it as preparing you for what is to come. Ahem.

Hello everyone, and I hope you guys are all enjoying your day/night/whatever time of day it is (gotta love the international aspect of blogging!).

I’m sure posts like this have been made before, but I haven’t seen many and I thought I might put my own perspective on the situation! I think almost 2 years of blogging (although I suppose the 7 months I’ve been away should be deducted) has me slightly qualified to reveal the truth behind the reality of blogging vs the expectations we (or I) have! Let’s do this.

Blogging Expectations vs Reality

Expectation #1:

“I’m going to have over 1000 followers and comments in one night, for sure! My posts are awesome.”

obviously

Reality

waiting
Waiting for followers and feedback…

Now, I don’t know about you guys, but when I first started blogging, it was way too easy to get trapped into the stats count of things. (Sometimes still is.) And the reality of it is, it is extremely rare for the stats to go sky high immediately! Having expectations such as the above will most likely not give you the results, which I learned the hard way haha. 😉 I didn’t have the exact expectation as above, but you get the idea?

Expectation #2:

“I’m going to have a perfect blogging schedule 100% of the time! I ❤ organization!”

Reality

Me trying to keep up with life and never being able to keep a proper blogging schedule...
Me trying to keep up with life and never being able to keep a proper blogging schedule…

I mean, I love organization, I swear I do! But… way too hard to keep a consistent and perfect blogging schedule ALL. THE. TIME. If you do, I swear you will find me at your feet begging you to give me your skills. As proven by my hiatuses and life in general, sometimes it’s impossible to control everything! And I’ve felt bad about leaving blogging for so long, but sometimes it’s necessary. And it’s okay. So, no, my blogging schedule was never 100% perfect, and probably never will be! And that’s okay too. 😉

Expectation #3:

“Blogging is so easy, it hardly takes any effort at all! I could do it in my sleep.”

Reality

I mean, maybe for some the above expectation *is* reality, in which case, again, I PRAISE YOU. But for most of us (I’m assuming, anyway, based on myself, haha) BLOGGING IS DIFFICULT. Lots of fun, of course! But it takes a lot of effort and dedication to run and maintain a blog, you know? Saying blogging doesn’t take effort is like saying it’s easy for me to wake up early in the morning. They’re both LIES.

Expectation #4:

“I can totally comment on all the amazing posts out there? What are you talking about, it hardly takes any time??”

Reality

If we (I) tried to keep up with commenting on all posts... also can we just appreciate this gif here?? #muppetlove
If we (I) tried to keep up with commenting on all posts… also can we just appreciate this gif here?? #muppetlove

This one still makes me sad, guys! I want so so much to be able to keep up with ALL of the great posts being posted by lovely and wonderful bloggers but it’s impossible! I love talking to other bloggers and spreading the comment love, but it actually takes a lot more time than you’d think, you know? I try to visit a bunch whenever I get the chance lately, but trying to keep up with all the posts that show up in my reader would drive me insane due to the HUGE number of them, not to mention rob me of my life haha. I do try to comment as much as I can! I love talking to you guys all. ❤

Expectation #5:

“It’s so easy to come up with new content, and my posts are so original!”

Reality

I’m not discounting the fact that there are a lot of diverse and unique material out there, but…. let’s face it, at one point, there was probably a post very similar to the one we write. It’s pretty much all been written about at some point. Sometimes it’s easy to come up with new content, sometimes not. But when it comes down to it, majority of the time, the reality is that it’s not always easy to come with new posts, or with truly original material. And that’s okay!


Okay, so this has been mostly positive expectations with a negative reality?? Let’s switch gears a bit to a more positive note for the realities, shall we? That was kind of depressing, geez.

Expectation #6:

Opposite to the “I will be so popular really fast” mentality, there is also…

“No one is going to read my posts?? I’m going to forever be stuck with 2 followers, one of which who happens to be my [mom/friend/sister/second account/whatever].”

Reality

The blogging community is huge and I promise you, as long as you interact and have good material, there will be more than a couple people interested in your blog! It’s hard to believe at first, but I guarantee it! After all, that’s exactly what I thought when I started blogging (after the realization that followers don’t come super fast) and I’ve been proven otherwise haha.

Expectation #7:

“The more experienced, “big” bloggers will probably never speak to me anyway.”

Reality

NOT TRUE. All bloggers, from my experience, no matter how long they’ve been blogging, are always welcome to chatting! Always. I haven’t met a single blogger that ignored me completely, or if I have, the number of them is so low that I can’t even recall the memory! The bloggers I have met, even the “big” bloggers (I put big in quotations because, well, it’s subjective) always manage a reply and are always super sweet. Seriously. This is the one of the biggest myths ever!

Expectation #8

“My posts have to be 100% perfect 100% of the time or else people will stop liking my posts and following me.”

Reality

Nobody’s perfect! And nobody cares if we slip up here and there. Am I right? There have been countless times where my posts have been less than great and were actually quite terrible, if I look back on them now (those archives are forbidden, guys) but it didn’t really matter? People are always so kind and it just gave me an opportunity to make my posts better for the next time.

Expectation #9:

I will never become one of those “big” bloggers! They have so many followers, oh my gosh. I’m never going to be match them.

Reality

Liessssssss! Never lose faith in your blogging abilities! I’d say not to be so occupied with stats, but it’s easier said than done sometimes. And I know how it feels to be discouraged that our blog will never be as popular as other people’s. But I mean, I never thought this blog would go past, like, 20 followers, tops? I’m not bragging, but I’ve come a long way since then and I just wanted to tell you guys, anyone who’s feeling discouraged, or just in general, don’t get discouraged. Keep blogging. Keep working. You will reach your goal! Those “big” bloggers started off at the bottom, too. And at the end of the day, it’s just a number! Don’t let it determine your value. Because you and your blog are so much more than that!

Expectation #10:

“Blogging will totally change my life.”

Reality

… You know, this is actually 100% true. In the best way possible!


Sooooo I think that wraps up the end of this post. Please comment and let me know your thoughts! Which of these do you agree with? Disagree with? Do you have any other ones to add? I’d love to know and grow my collection of blogging secrets. LOL.  I’ve also been blog hopping lately, trying to make up for my lack of participation for the past 7 months haha. Leaving a comment would make it easier for me to stop by your blog, not to mention make my day! ❤ I hope you guys enjoy your day/night. Hugs!

Until the Next Meal, Analee

These literary dads are the BEST! | Happy Father’s Day

It’s Father’s Day today! And in honor of that, I decided to take a moment to appreciate all the fictional fathers that we all secretly wish were alive–because no matter how much we love our own fathers, these fathers are pretty great!

Fictional Fathers

Atticus Finch — To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Atticus

Anyone who’s read the books know how much of a great father he is! Kind, honorable and a great role model for his kids. He’s just such a model father!

Arthur Weasley — Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter series

Ahhhh Arthur Weasley is just such a great father. I’m going to repeat that for pretty much all of these fathers, pretty much, but still. Raising 7 kids, supporting them and doing his best to keep the family going, despite the poor circumstances, Arthur Weasley is great! (And when you compare him to some of the other fathers in the series..)

Mr. Covey — To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

To All the Boys I've Loved Before

Father to three daughters, with no mother to help, Mr. Covey totally nailed fatherhood in all sense of the word! He was so (wait for it…) yep, great. I’m totally ruining the word with my over-use of it, but shhh. It’s true! He single-handed raised three girls–that’s no easy feat!

Adam and Seth — My Life After Now by Jessica Verdi

My Life After Now

The main character, Lucy, actually has two dads, which I found to be so great (how many times have YOU seen that?)–even more so because they were 100% fabulous and supportive (particularly to Lucy’s situation). They were such great parents, raising and helping out Lucy and just all-around awesome.

Luke Garroway — Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare

Mortal Instruments series

Although he has no children of his own, he was a father figure to Clary, so that counts right? With Valentine being.. Valentine, Luke was so great to Clary, caring for her like she was his own. ❤ He wants to protect her, but at the same time he does what he knows is right. Go Luke!

Arthur Avery — Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Fangirl

Another single father, he had the task of raising two twins, and it was so nice seeing that connection between him and his daughters (particularly Cath). You could see he really cared about the both of them, and it was great to see that. ❤

Andie’s dad — The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson

The Unexpected Everything

Andie and her dad didn’t have the greatest of relationships at first, but as the story progressed they slowly rebuilt their broken relationship, and that was SO AWESOME. Andie’s dad was so great! He really took the time to know Andie afterwards and they had so many great moments. LOVE!

Hazel’s dad — The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

The Fault in Our Stars

I don’t remember much of this story apart from the very big details, but I do remember that Hazel’s dad was definitely not a bad example! He wasn’t a huge part of the story, but I do believe he loved Hazel and supported her. Both Hazel’s parents were really great characters, tbh.

Arisotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz

Aristotle & Dante

I haven’t actually read this book yet *hides* BUT I do plan on reading it asap! I really want to read it for sure, especially after hearing all the amazing things about it. And apparently it has a great father in it too. So yay!


Wow, that was actually quite difficult, because there are so few I came up with… when it really should be difficult ’cause there are many to choose from! FATHERS SHOULD BE NORMAL, guys. At least for some books. Not just a handful! *sigh*

But either way, what do you think? Are there any fathers I missed? (Probably.) Which of these have you read? Who do you think takes the cake for best fictional father? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!

Until the Next Meal, Analee

Fictional Settings I Wish Were Real | Seriously, I REALLY wish these were real.

Hello. It’s me.

(Sorry, I feel like this post warranted that. It’s been so long, and it’s so old, I know! But I had to. SHHH you know you do it too.)

I’m back today with another post, you guys! Be proud of me. I’m not exactly sure what inspired this topic, but I was making a few header graphics for some of my other planned posts and then suddenly I saw a picture that just made this idea pop into my head. Be prepared for a severe case of wanderlust guys, for these fictional places! I mean, come on, who DOESN’T want to go to these places?

Let’s do this! I apologize in advance if this post causes your wanderlust to go overboard and like me, you end up sobbing because these places don’t exist.

Fictional settings I wish were real

1. Hogwarts (Harry Potter)

YOU ALL SAW THIS COMING. I mean, come on! Even people who haven’t read Harry Potter (ps you must definitely go fix that mistake asap please and thank you) wouldn’t mind going to the utter fabulousness that is Hogwarts. And other magical places. (Diagon Alley, anyone? I WANT TO GET MY WAND and magic thanks.)

Hogwarts 2
LOOK AT IT!! ❤ ❤

2. Narnia (The Chronicles of Narnia)

Hasn’t anyone else dreamed of visiting Narnia once upon a time?! I mean, come on. IT’S NARNIA peoples. ❤

narnia-map

3. Camp Half Blood/Jupiter (Percy Jackson, Heroes of Olympus)

Rick Riordan’s books have always had a place in my heart, and it’s definitely a certain that Camp Half Blood found a place there too! IT’S JUST THE BEST. Someone take me there, please? *heart eyes*

Camp Half Blood

4. Luna, New Beijing (The Lunar Chronicles)

The settings in the Lunar Chronicles sound so cool! And I SO wouldn’t mind visiting Luna or New Beijing. Seriously, why can’t these places be real?!

Luna

5. Panem (The Hunger Games)

I think it makes sense to wish this was real, right? I mean, war’s over and everything and Panem just sounds SO COOL. And really pretty? Are there any tours available, ’cause sign me up please. (Yes, I realize Panem is FICTIONAL *sadly* but maybe the places where the movie took place? ‘Cause those were super great. Ahem.)

Panem

6. Ravka (Grishaverse)

Ahh, Leigh Bardugo and her Grishaverse. Can never get tired of it, really. Especially now that we have the amazing Six of Crows and the books in that series! Ravka’s world just seems so cool. And I know it’s based off Russia too (which is already on my to-visit-someday list because RUSSIA.)

Ravka

7. Trollus (Stolen Songbird)

I haven’t squealed about this book and the series enough, tbh. There is SO MUCH going on for this book and oh my gosh, the world building is most definitely one of the best parts!! Trollus just seems SO AMAZING (I’m saying that for literally every place on this list, but SHH. They’re all so amazing.) and I really want to go visit! It sounds really dark and cold and everything but beautiful with lights and hidden treasures. ❤

Trollus
I found this on Pinterest and it LOOKS SO PRETTY

8. The Fae Courts (A Court of Thorns and Roses)

If there was one thing Sarah J. Maas didn’t blotch in the A Court of Thorns and Roses series, it’s the world and descriptions! I absolutely adore the idea of the Courts (Spring Court, Summer Court,etc.–SO BEAUTIFUL) and it would be SO COOL if they were real (apart from the part where there’s a whole war going on… details, details.)

acotar-map1

9. Khorasan (The Wrath and the Dawn)

Set in the middle-east, The Wrath and the Dawn duology is probably one of my favourite books, for like EVER. Seriously, I love this book series SO MUCH. (So basically, if you haven’t read this yet, LEAVE. AND DO SO IMMEDIATELY. Ahem.) And the setting was so cool!! I would definitely not mind visiting someday… (except I can’t *sob*)

TWATD Map

10. Primoria (Snow Like Ashes)

Primoria

Can I just squeal about how much I adore the world in Snow Like Ashes? It’s based on the seasons, and there are 4 kingdoms (each based on a season) and it’s just asjksfhkdhgolehtogrehgaernglekg. Seriously. I have no words. The descriptions and everything was all SO PRETTY AND MAGICAL. I just really want to go. Pretty please? PLEASEEE.

Bonus: Multi-Londons (Shades of Magic)

london-map

I suppose you can count this technically as a real setting, because, hello? LONDON? But this world as a whole is (to my dismay) fiction so. SOB. Who doesn’t want to visit multiple Londons? Red London, Grey London, White London. They’re all SO COOL and I severely want to visit!!!


So.

*offers you tissue box*
Anyone else facing the struggles of being (too) attached to fiction? I am seriously SO SAD that these places don’t exist for us bookworms to visit… (With the exception of Hogwarts, kind of, since we can visit at Universal Studios? BUT IT’S NOT THE SAME *sobs harder* [I’m totally okay, guys. Totally sane. I’m usually not this emotional, sorry. 😛 But can you blame me?]
ANYWAY. Join me in my sobbing wanderlusting! (That sounds kind of weird..) Which of these places do YOU wish were real the most? (Obviously ALL of them, but if you had to pick. (a horror, I know! I apologize in advance.) Which of these books have you read? TALK TO ME, please. (I’m very desperate and it clearly shows.) Hope you’re all enjoying your weekend! ❤
Until the Next Meal, Analee

Reasons why fantasy is one of the best genres ever | Top Ten Tuesday #33

Hola mi amigos! Don’t ask what that was, I have no idea. (My long-ago Dora days are kicking in.) Anyway, it’s been a LONG TIME since I’ve participated in a Top Ten Tuesday, and it’s about time, don’t you think? Making lists is one of my favourite things to do, so I’ve been quite sad that I have been depriving myself and the world of said lists. Ahem. ANYWAY. Rambling a bit there.

This week’s theme from The Broke and the Bookish is “Ten Reasons I Love Xcould be a certain book, character, author, your indie bookstore, a fandom, a tv show, reading, a hobby, a genre. Honestly anything you want to gush about.” As you know, I went with reasons why I love the fantasy genre! Let’s do this.

Top 10 Tuesday 3

1. It lets us escape into a different world.

Some people can argue that this applies to other genres as well (pretty much anything that’s fiction when you think about it) but I feel like it applies most strongly to fantasy? It generally tends to actually create a whole new world which is what makes it so magical and intriguing to read about. Sometimes reality just doesn’t cut it, you know? Whenever an escape from reality is required, fantasy is always such a good choice. What better way to escape than into a world completely different from yours?

Hogwarts
I can’t be the only one who loves Harry Potter because of the world, right?

2. It takes us on an adventure.

It’s not even necessarily a physical adventure, though that’s what it is most of the time. It might be an emotional adventure too, where the events lead to an emotional roller coaster (that happened so many times… my feels were overwhelmed). We love to read books because of all the feelings we go through and going on an adventure alongside the characters definitely brings out all sorts of emotions, am I right? *cough* Percy Jackson *cough* Harry Potter *pretty much all my favourite fantasy books*

3. We get to use our imaginations.

One of the best parts of the fantasy genre is the amount of freedom authors have to spin their story. No boundaries of real life, nothing but their own creativity and it’s SO GREAT to read. There’s just such a thrill in being carried into a story of someone else’s imagination, in a completely new (and fictitious) world. So many new ideas, and tons of creativity. How can you not fall in love with all that?

dragon-fantasy-4
DRAGONS. (Unfortunately they don’t exist in real life, soooo.)

4. Childhood memories

This seems like an odd reason with no correlation whatsoever, but remember those times back when you were a child, and you believed in everything, from fairytales to unicorns to dragons to fairies? Now, grown up we no longer believe in such things, but fantasy is now allowing us to go back to those times when we thought they existed, and read about them. Maybe this isn’t such a huge reason but for me at least, whenever *I* hear of a book about fairies, I can’t help but remember those days… 😉 There’s just something that feels so… I don’t know. Child-like, when it comes to fantasy despite it being the opposite of such. (Please tell me I’m not alone here?? I feel crazy right now. o.O)

5. There is a strong emotional message/theme.

You know how people enjoy contemporary a lot of the time because they’re able to relate and sympathize to the characters and their situation? How there’s a strong emotional theme (to the good books, at least)? Well, that’s not only for the contemporary folks. In books of the fantasy genre, there are tons that despite their out-of-worldness and fantastical elements, actually have an emotional theme that we’re able to relate to. That attachment, paired alongside the intriguing idea of a different world, is what makes fantasy such a gem for me. It’s like such a great mix between relatable and unrelatable? If that makes sense.

6. It puts things into perspective.

I mean, I suppose a lot of books across a variety of genres does so (considering how the characters’ lives always seem to be so much more worse and dramatic than ours in real life..) but especially in the fantasy genre. I mean, no matter how bad your life might be, when you compare to the lives of all the suffering characters in books, I’m sure it won’t seem as bad. Am I right? Like, you try comparing your life with Celaena Sardothien in the first book… um yeah. I doubt your life’s that bad. Just saying. 😛 (You should be glad, tbh.)

7. Options are endless.

The fact is, there are an infinite amount of ideas in fantasy. The options are actually endless. As such, it actually kind of makes me disappointed when I see that some fantasy novels are so similar because there are SO MANY things that fantasy can touch on. As long as you have imagination, fantasy can never die out of lack of ideas. And there’s just something so wonderful about that. ❤ There’s just something so comforting knowing that no matter what, fantasy is there and ready for us to delve into. Does that sound crazy? Probably but humour me.

8. Gives us something to root for.

When it seems like there’s nothing left in real life that seems worth rooting for and you’re just dead and lost all motivation for anything, pick up a fantasy novel! More often than not you’ll find something you root for, whether it’s the characters, their cause, a romance, and who knows what else. Sometimes it’s just that hope and rooting for something (even if it’s fictional) that helps us feel good.

9. (Usually) crushes our emotions and kills us.

Only partially joking about the ‘kills us’ part. Usually I find that fantasy always has me so drained after reading because me emotions always go through such a roller-coaster. And is it just me, or does it seem like fantasy is the genre where cliffhangers are used most often?? And let me tell you, those are absolute deathhhh. Agh. And then I typically fall into this state of shock and hangover where I cannot do anything but just sit in awe of the book. So. I still love these books even though they turn me into such a mess? #logic

pyEOCvV
Me, pretty much? <.<

10. It’s fun!

So I may or may not be just out of steam for now and grasping at straws for the last one, but I do feel like this counts. Fantasy is fun. It’s enjoyable. One of the main reasons we read at all is for fun, and fantasy provides exactly that. Fun! And who doesn’t like that? It’s entertainment, guys. No matter what emotional havoc it caused and all the turmoil and tension we go through while reading it, it all shows just how easy it is to get hooked into a fantasy novel (well, any genre of novel really, but for the sake of this post I’m making it more specific). I’d be lying if I said that I don’t pick up fantasy novels for entertainment. 😉


Alright, so I think that’s it! I think I covered most of the important reasons why I love fantasy, for this week’s Top Ten Tuesday! I have been considering making a similar list like this for contemporary, feel free to let me know if that’s something you’d be interested in. What are your thoughts on this? Are you a fan of fantasy? Did I miss any other reasons? Or is fantasy not your thing? I’d love to know your thoughts! Feel free to leave a link to your own Top Ten Tuesday as well if you want. I’d love to stop by!

Enjoy your Tuesday, guys! Sending you lots of cake and chocolate. You’re welcome. ✌️ I know I need it! (Who doesn’t is the question.)

Analee 5

Re-reading! Library books! Woo! | WWW Wednesday #47 (April 20th)

Hey everyone! I think this post was actually supposed to go up earlier, but I guess there was a glitch and it didn’t. (Technology can be a bother sometimes.. *sigh*) But anyway here I am with this week’s WWW Wednesday! I actually managed to get A LOT of reading done, by some kind of magic witchcraft. And I enjoyed basically all of them, so yesss. Success right there! Alright, so let’s get into the what of everything.

WWW Wednesday

Currently Reading

I started my re-read of The Raven Boys yesterday! I’m hoping to have this and at least the second book finished before the release of The Raven King (which I can’t wait for, by the way). I don’t actually talk about this series much (or ever), I’ve noticed, but I actually do like it! Re-reading it now is making me enjoy it more than the first time, I think. Just a little.

Recently Finished

The Winner’s Curse was the book I had been reading last week, and, well, I finished it! It was a re-read, and I loved it just as much as when I read it the first time. ❤

It’s a Wonderful Death was a surprise read for me, actually. I hadn’t planned on reading it, but I got it from the library the other day and since it seemed like a quick read, I decided to read it! And gosh, I loved it. It was such an insightful yet fun read!

A Step Toward Falling was another library book I got. At first I wasn’t that into it, but by the time I reached the end, I really enjoyed it! I’m definitely going to be trying out Cammie McGovern’s other novel, Say What You Will, sometime as well.

And finally, I also read What We Left Behind. I’ve been really into the library and contemporary books this week, it seems! This, as well, was a really good read. Full of diverse and interesting characters, I had so much fun reading this, especially since the author dealt with the LGBT themes so well.

Read Next

So, I finished my re-read of The Winner’s Curse the other day (it was sooo good!) and am currently planning on writing up a review on it. I’m kind of debating whether to just do a series review once I finished The Winner’s Kiss? If I do then I can go straight ahead to The Winner’s Crime but otherwise I have to wait ’till I’m done writing my review… I’m quite indecisive right now. So.

Moving on, I’m currently re-reading The Raven Boys in anticipation for the release of The Raven King, and obviously, once I finish it I’ll be moving on to The Dream Thieves, the second book! I really must finish my re-read of the series soon, for the fourth book is being released quite soon. I think?

And, now, here’s a confession: I haven’t read The Moth and the Flame or The Crown and the Arrow yet! (They’re novellas set in the world of The Wrath and the Dawn, in case you didn’t know.) I know, I know. But I’ve been a busy little chocolate bar, and I just thought I might as well wait–The Rose and the Dagger is being released soon, after all, and these novellas might be useful to jog my memory as to what happened in TWATD.

Finally, I’ve decided to add Tell Me Three Things to this list–is it just me, or did that book seem to appear everywhere for a while? Those blog tour people sure know how to attack us with book publicity! But maybe that was just me. So. Anyway, I am mildly intrigued and definitely want to check it out!


So there we have it for this week! What books on here have you read? What book do you think I should pick next? How has your reading been this week? Let me know your thoughts in the comments! I hope you’re all enjoying your Wednesday. ❤

Until the Next Meal, Analee

The dreaded reading slump has been defeated! | WWW Wednesday #46 (April 13th)

It’s been a while since I did a WWW Wednesday post (3-4 weeks, I think?) but to be fair, I hadn’t really read much in those weeks… or at all? Like, maybe one book. So. I was in a major blogging and reading slump–thankfully those dark days are over! *dances around with chocolate* But I’m back this week to catch up a bit on what I’ve been reading, what I plan to read, etc. Yes, yes, I know, you missed me and these posts. Probably not but hushhh.

WWW Wednesday

Currently Reading

Some of you may recall, how I started Illuminae.. maybe three weeks ago? Even longer? Yeah. Well, I haven’t made any progress with it! :/ Which makes me really sad, actually. It’s just I haven’t been in the mood to read this AT ALL. I couldn’t bring myself to pick it up and read it, even after my reading slump was over. Which is why I’m thinking right now just to leave it? Not leave it forever, but, like, pause reading it? I don’t want to force myself to read it and end up enjoying it a lot less than I could have otherwise. So. I’m confused.

The Winner’s Curse is actually a re-read for me, since I read it a year ago or something? And since the third book has been released, I decided to start rereading the first two books! I kind of was unwilling to reread because there are SO MANY other books I want to read, but it’s been so long since I read this. So. So far I’m really enjoying it! Arin and Kestrel… ❤

Recently Finished

I actually don’t even know what spurred me to read The Impostor Queen–but what I do know, is that it managed to jarr me out of my slump! I started it and I think I finished it, in like, less than two days. It started off kind of ‘meh’, decent, but nothing too great, but then it really became something amazing. I really loved the fantasy world it created, with magic based around fire and ice and everything. Loved it!

My friend actually had a copy of The Glittering Court (I was kind of surprised, tbh) and since I was kind of wary of whether I’d like it or not, I just borrowed it from her. I wouldn’t say it was a bad read, but… it wasn’t amazing either. I mean, I liked the concept well enough, but I wasn’t always the biggest fan of the characters, which really put down the enjoyment factor. :/ I wished I liked it more, though I did still like it.

The book that followed The Glittering Court, however, made up for more than my partial disappointment over TGC. The Sky is Everywhere blew away all and any of the expectations I had! If you haven’t read this book already, guys, I’m telling you, you must. (At least if you’re into contemporaries.) A book with themes of sisterhood, coping with grief and of course, love, The Sky is Everywhere is such an emotional and fabulous read–READ IT.

Read Next

What We Left Behind has been on my TBR since last year, when it was released, but I never got around to reading it! I’ve been kind of wanting to read another contemporary after The Sky is Everywhere, but I ended up starting The Winner’s Curse instead. Once I finish that I might read this?

The Winner’s Crime, of course, is the sequel to The Winner’s Curse. I’ll also be rereading this, obviously. I’m not going to read it directly after Winner’s Curse (a la binge-read fashion) because I do want to write up a review of it before moving onto the second book. 🙂

The Raven King will be releasing this month, and to prepare for it I decided I want to re-read the previous books in the series, starting, of course, with The Raven Boys! I’m really in a rereading mood this month, LOL. XD I blame this on you, publishers, for making books in a series so spread apart!

Alright, this book isn’t a reread, as I’ve been meaning to read this for SO LONG you know this; Red Rising! I’ve heard so many amazing things (but then, don’t I say that about nearly every book? Oops.) and I can’t wait to read it. Fingers crossed!


Erm, are we missing anything? Nope, don’t think so (though I wouldn’t mind having some chocolate right now.. I’m kind of hungry.) so I guess that means it’s time for you guys to talk to me! Because you all know I need your opinions and approvals. XD So leave any of your thoughts below! I’d love to hear them. And feel free to link your own WWW post below!

Happy Wednesday!

Until the Next Meal, Analee

Tons of new books, as usual! (The Rose and the Dagger is coming out–YES!) | 2016 April Book Releases

Okay, so I’m like 8 days late on this? Oops. But oh well, rather do it late than never.. these posts are as much for me as for you guys, and I must admit this can be very useful for me when I need to remind myself of the books I want to look out for? XD (THERE ARE SO MANY I CAN’T KEEP TRACK omg) Though for this month I feel like the number of anticipated books I have is lower than usual..? But still, lots of books. *grabby hands* (Also, The Rose and the Dagger is being released this month–which, honestly, would be enough just on its own, I’ve been waiting for this book for SO LONG. AHHHHH.) Anyway, let’s get onto the books!

2016 April Book Releases

April 1st

April 5th

April 12th

April 19th

April 21st

April 26th

April 28th


See what I mean? So many books. Of course, in the back of my mind I’m feeling depressed that I can’t own these all, but mostly I’m just in awe of all the pretty covers! Oh and the interesting books. (But mostly the covers. #bookwormtruths) And of course, you all know I’m super psyched for The Rose and the Dagger (it’s like chocolate-level amazingness for me right now, even though I don’t know how it will turn out yet), though I also can’t wait for many other books like The Glittering Court, The Raven King, When We Collided, etc etc. SO TELL ME. What books are YOU looking forard to the most? Let us squeal over these books! Because, ahem, they look stunning. Oh, and they all seem amazing. So. Fangirling time!
I hope you guys all have a great Friday! You can bet I’ll be gobbling up chocolate to celebrate (any excuse to eat chocolate is fine by me, obviously) the arrival of the weekend…

Until the Next Meal, Analee

Signs You’re in a Blogging Slump + How to get out! | Book Snacks Babbles

Oh. my. gosh. It’s been SO LONGGGGG since I last posted–or was last alive, to be honest. The past couple of years weeks have been busy (like, really busy), yes, but I also must admit it was also due to pure laziness tinged with exhaustion that this blog went abandoned for such a long time. I might be exaggerating about the length of my unplanned hiatus, but not really..seeing how I don’t usually take such unprecedented hiatuses for this amount of time? But whatever. Life and school..and life, but mostly school, has been unmerciful on me and I was absolutely swamped these past couple of weeks, by either tons of work or bouts of exhaustion and moments of utter zombieness. I had tons of post ideas in my head, but I just couldn’t find the a) time-common excuse, I know, but true–b) motivation, c) strength, or d) the will to get away from my chocolate bars, you know? #sorrynotsorry

SO. All that combined to a very unsuccessful March, in terms of blogging, AND reading too. Le sigh. *cue internal sadness* *grabs chocolate to cure sadness* But I have missed you guys!! I’m currently really really slow with catching up with all your blogs but I am trying, I swear. I spent time yesterday blog hopping (which really cheered me up, actually) and if I have time today I’ll definitely be doing so again. 🙂

Though moving on to the real purpose of this post: having been in a kind-of blogging slump these past two weeks, and finally attempting to restart my inspiration and motivation to blog (so kind of getting out of the slump), obviously I consider myself a total expert* on this subject! 😉 So I’ve decided to become a helpful little chocolate bar–as I always am, of course–and give you guys a list of signs you’re in a blogging slump. If you know the symptoms you can better ward them off, after all. Kind of. Or at least recognize them? And I shall also advise you on how to get out of a blogging slump–you’re welcome.

*Major exaggeration here, folks. Pff, me, an expert? But still. It sounds better this way, sooo. Oh, but I need you guys to correct any of my mistakes! Add your own ideas, tell me what you think, etc etc. Chocolate for you if you contribute! 😛

Signs You're in a Blogging Slump


Reasons We Fall Into Blogging Slumps

Let’s go through some background info. What causes the dreaded blogging slump to present itself? Here’s a quick list (because lists are fabulous–Cait‘s list loving tendencies are contagious!)

  • Life gets in the way 24/7. Blogging is something that takes TIME. And boy, does it take lots of it. In an ideal book blogger world, life is merciful and stress-free, and does not try to prevent you from doing the things you actually enjoy. In the real world, well… life is more likely to attack you with a truckload of things you have to do–and it doesn’t include blogging.
  • Stats are low. Although everyone repeats, time and time again, that stats don’t matter, to some people they might be quite a large factor in their enjoyment of blogging. To me, I feel concentrating on stats doesn’t really get you anywhere other than down the road of sadness and disappointment, but sometimes low stats can get to be quite discouraging–which, of course can cause a slump.
  • Too much pressure. When you start feeling like you have to blog, as if it were a job, it makes it a whole lot less fun! And then the pressure of having to blog (when you might not be feeling like it or in the mood for it) definitely doesn’t help matters.
  • You feel like you have no more interesting post ideas. Although in basically all situations this is 100% false in reality, when in your head you feel as if you’re out of ideas, well, you’re not going to want to reach out to your computer to blog. (And so then the slump occurs, obviously.)
  • Not enough time. A seemingly empty excuse (and a common one at that), this is definitely one of the big reasons why someone might fall into a slump! Like, sometimes life just gets really busy, and when that continuously happens, there’s just not enough time for you to blog. There just isn’t. (*cue sadness*)
  • Tiredness. Sometimes, even when we do have time, simply exhaustion or laziness after a long day causes for us to not reach for the computer to blog. And when this tiredness continues to occur often, well, say hello to the blogging slump. (Erm, I’m kind of guilty of this.. I blame school. And life. But mostly school.)

  • Expectations are not being met. Whether this be in terms of stats, or comments, or anything, really, any expectation that someone may have had for blogging, when it isn’t met, it can be very discouraging (much like the low stats thing). And we all know where that can lead.
  • We run out of chocolate and therefore spend many many days huddled in a corner and crying. (This is totally legit, what are you talking about?)

I think those are the top ones? At least that I could think of right away. I know there are tons more though–so if there’s a reason (or several reasons) you fell into a blogging slump that I haven’t listed, TELL ME. Because I must know all the reasons and become an all-knowing blogging slump master. Yes yes.

Anyway, moving on to the actual…

Signs that a blogging slump is on the way or has reached you

  • You start to be constantly ‘not in the mood’ to blog.

Omg. #1 sign, I tell you. #1. Or at least in the top 10. When you keep making those same “I don’t feel like it” or “I’m not in the mood to blog” excuses, you know. And if you didn’t recognize the sign until now, well, you’re welcome.

Tip: Read blogs that inspire you! Your favourite blogs, favourite posts, whatever. Even if you don’t feel like blogging, looking at other posts that you like might help you to become back in the mood to blog. It’s simple in theory, and most of the time, it also works.

Tip: Taking a break from blogging is 100% okay when you’re feeling overwhelmed, stressed, or just don’t have time. It really is. You don’t have to be worried about taking a break. But when you stop blogging for reasons that are more based on laziness or moodiness, well.. my one tip is to push yourself a bit more to blog. Not so much that it puts tons of pressure on you, but enough so that you

  • You’re having more fun doing anything except blogging.

It’s a fact to most people that blogging is hard work. Yes, it can be fun, but the amount of time and effort that has to go in to make a good, quality post is insane. Most people know this yet they still continue blogging. Why? Because they enjoy it. When you no longer enjoy blogging, well, you won’t feel like doing it, now will you? When that happens, you know what it means..

Tip: Taking a break can definitely help in this situation! Though that’s just a temporary solution. To really cure this, one of the things I recommend doing is making a list, or reading a list, about the things you love about blogging. When you focus on the positives, maybe it will help you enjoy it once again. Do what you enjoy about blogging, instead of focusing on what you don’t really enjoy.

  • Blogging becomes a chore/an unwanted reminder of something you have to do.

*SIGH* Blogging. Right.

It’s never a good sign when the thing that was supposed to be a fun, light, hobby, and what used to make you happy, becomes the thing that makes you frown or sigh in frustration. Never!

Tip: Really, I feel like the same tips can help with multiple things. Finding things you love about blogging (mentioned above) can really help for this. When something that was previously associated with positive ideals, becomes associated with negatives, it really helps to have a reminder that the thing (in our case, blogging) isn’t truly something that bad! It’s hard, but it’s generally something we love to do, no? I hope all that made sense, oops.

  • You purposefully spend your free time doing other things even if that time could be spent blogging.

“Oh, I finished all my homework/household duties/whatever other requirements you have! Hm, I think I’m going to go surf the channels on TV, even though I know there’s nothing good on.” A bad example (but maybe it’s possible?) but you get what I mean! This is definitely another obvious sign that a blogging slump is either on its way or has reached you.

Tip: Push yourself a bit more to use that free time to blog! I doubt there’s ever going to be a time where after you write a post (instead of watching boring TV, for example), you’re going to be like, “I wish I had watched that old TV sports show that I don’t like!” or something. You know?

  • You no longer prioritize blogging or really care so much about posting on time/at all.

Another very obvious sign that you’re soon to be a victim of a blogging slump, this one can make it hard to get back into blogging once you fall into a slump. When you stop making blogging a priorty, or really caring much about it, well, you have more of a ‘it doesn’t really matter’ attitude, you know? Which can make things difficult.

Tip: Try and find new post ideas! Inspire yourself. Motivate yourself so that you’re able to get rid of the ‘I don’t care’ attitude, because, let me tell you, that ain’t gonna help anything. This seems like a very ‘bad’ thing to fall into, but all it really is is an effect of falling into a blogging slump. If inspiration just isn’t coming to you, then sometimes also just taking a break, being disconnected from the blog and everything, might help. Chances are the bookworm in you (if you’re a book blogger) won’t be able to resist squealing about the newest 5-star book your read. 😉

Last minute babbling…

I will forever back the statement of taking a break when you need one. (98% of the time, at least.) Sometimes it’s what it takes for you to get back your blogging game, you know? However, I also believe in a good balance. Yes, life can be a real bully to us little people, and yes, so is time. It is SO DIFFICULT to blog when we have to constantly battle the force of real life. I get that. I really do. But sometimes, another part of it is just us sitting around and choosing not to do it–which leads to being a blogging slump most of the time rather than being a productive hiatus. Lol.  Sometimes it’s good if we push ourselves a bit more. I’ve been in a blogging slump for almost 3 weeks now? It was tempting to just leave this post in the drafts, along with all my other ones, but I found that when I finally pushed myself to write up a post, it really felt good and satisfying. Reading other blog posts and reminding myself what an amazing journey blogging has been for me is two of the things that pushed me out of my blogging slump–so I definitely recommend those two tips the most! Blogging slumps are seemingly impossible to get rid of, but if you try, I promise it’s not that hard. 😉


Okay, so that turned out to be a lot more rambling on my part than I had expected–sorry for all that, guys. I do hope it all made sense.

But now, I’d love to hear your opinions! I’ve missed talking to you all SO MUCH, so please don’t leave me hanging, lolll. Have you ever fallen into a blogging slump? How did you get out? What other reasons are there that cause blogging slumps to occur? Has anyone else felt the pain of running out of chocolate??!! #honestquestion Oh, and what helps you the most when attempting to escape a blogging slump? Leave any of your thoughts below!

Until the Next Meal, Analee

I read Lady Midnight… and it was AMAZING. | WWW Wednesday #45 (March 16th)

Hey everyone! It’s Wednesday once again, which of course means, a WWW Wednesday post! The biggest news I have really is the fact that I read both Lady Midnight and A Gathering of Shadows, both of which I absolutely loved! Though agh, I’m still reading Illuminae. Oops.

Alright, let’s get to the actual books!

WWW Wednesday is a meme hosted by Sam @ Taking On a World of Words), where we answer the following questions:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

WWW Wednesday

Currently Reading

Okay, yes, I realize I have been reading this for almost over a week now, and yes, I realize that I have been giving priority to other books instead of this one BUT I swear, I’m actually going to focus on this now. (Well, I’ll try. And that counts for something, right?) I really do want to finish this book!

Recently Finished

I (shockingly) managed to find time to finish the rest of the Tales from Shadowhunter Academy ebooks! I couldn’t help it; I really wanted to move on to Lady Midnight, but I wanted to finish the tales first. And I’m glad I did–I really enjoyed them!

A Gathering of Shadows was so, so, SO good. But that cliffhanger! Aghhhhh it’s too painful. My emotions were all over for this book, my heart got stomped on, I had some near-screeching moments where characters made unintelligent moves, my heart got stomped on–you know, the usual. It was such a great sequel to the already fantastic ADSOM–It was amazing!

Okay, so my last read for this week was the hugely anticipated Lady Midnight! *Cue fangirling shrieks* Once I finished the Tales from Shadowhunter Academy, I decided I couldn’t wait and dived right into Lady Midnight. And oh. my. god. I cannot even express my feelings of love right now since they’re so intense. I literally devoured this whole book and it was so amazing, just simply fantastic. If you’re hesitating about reading this, I’m telling you, READ ITTTTT. NOWW.

Read Next

Red Rising is on my list once again this week–and I’m hoping to get to it soon after finishing Illuminae! I’ve been looking forward to jumping on the Pierce Brown bandwagon for a while now. 🙂

The Rest of Us Just Live Here has been one of those books I kept telling myself I’d read, yet never got around to. I’ve put off putting it on my Read Next list for some reason? But now I’m finally going to try and read it. It’s not that I don’t want to.. it’s just I’m scared of my expectations? So.

I’ve been meaning to read The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender (woo, that’s a mouthful) for a while now, due to its intriguing synopsis and the things I’ve heard about it. I doubt I’ll actually be able to read this, but I do plan on reading it sometime!

Unlike the rest of the above books I mentioned, Vicious isn’t technically part of my March TBR, but I’ve decided that I most definitely want to read it this month! It’s been on my TBR FOREVER and now, having read ADSOM and AGOS, I’m craving for another novel by V.E. Schwab.


Alright so that’s it for this week’s WWW Wednesday! It’s been a busy week, though not as much as usual, but I’m still quite shocked I managed to get through so much! Lady Midnight and A Gathering of Shadows both were quite long novels, haha. Though totally worth it!

What books have you been reading recently? What do you think of the books this week? Anyone else out there who’s read Lady Midnight or A Gathering of Shadows? I’d love to chat, so leave all and any of your thoughts in the comments! ❤ Hope you’re enjoying your day!

Until the Next Meal, Analee

 

Things I Wish I Knew/Did as a Newbie Blogger — Newbies, take notes! | Book Snacks Babbles

BSB Description

It’s been a long day, without you, my friends.

Sorry, that song has been stuck in my head for some reason. But hi, hello! I know it’s Tuesday, and I swear, I had really meant to do a Top Ten Tuesday post, but it’s felt like a while since I posted the last discussion, so I thought, why not write up another one? I promise I will be doing Top Ten Tuesday posts once again sometime, but today is not that day! As the title dictates, for this post, I’m going to be talking about things I wish I knew or did back when I was a newbie blogger. In many ways I still consider myself to be one, to be honest, (there’s new things I learn everyday!) but I suppose technically, since I’ve been blogging for a year now, I’m not as much of a newbie anymore–at the very least, I have the basics of the whole blogging thing down. 😉 But back in the day, when I first started blogging, there were many things I didn’t know! So, now, to walk down memory lane, I’ve decided to think about those things and reflect on the things I know now–that I wish I had known before. Oh, also, warning: this is a no judgement-zone! Mine is a fragile ego. XD (LOL jk but entertain me, why don’t you.) If you judge you shall get no chocolate. And that’s a horror you don’t even want to consider, right? Right. Exactly. *nods*

Alright, now that we got that cheerful little thing out of the way, let’s get on to it, shall we?

Agh, sorry for the terrible image. I totally rushed this! I'll be editing this later, haha.

1. I don’t have to post everything on one single day.

Erm, I hope I’m not the only one who thought this? Back when I first started blogging, I was under the impression that I had to write several posts in one day. And can you guess? I wrote many posts, for one day. Uhhhh, nope. I was most definitely mistaken! Firstly, there’s no requirement for anything. If I wanted I could post nothing on a day, or 10. Who knows. Secondly, there’s really no point in posting everything in one day (though if you wanted to, of course, that’s all your choice). So. Once I noticed that I was just wasting time posting so many posts in a day, it became much better, yes yes. Which brings me too the second point:

2. There’s this magical thing called a scheduling button.

Okay, so I knew I had the option of scheduling posts, like, many weeks (perhaps months, I dunno really) after I started blogging? (Hush hush, no judgement here, remember?) But I (in a move that boasts of utter ridiculousness, to be honest) kind of ignored it for.. oh, I dunno. Months, definitely. Lots of months. I don’t even know why? Maybe it was just paranoia that it wouldn’t work, or… I really don’t know. Once I actually took the big step and used it (like, 10 thousand years later. Well, slight exaggeration, but whatever.) it turned out to be great and quite useful! So yeah, I most definitely would’ve wanted to have use it before. XD Again, I don’t even know what kept stopping me from using it? What can I say, I’m a confusing person. We’ve established this.

3. I don’t have to be worried about putting my personality out there.

I think it’s kind of natural, at the very start of blogging, that our personality isn’t, perhaps.. as clear? Okay, okay, I know that explains nothing whatsoever, but like, I mean.. aghhh sorry excuse my moment of utter failing-at-lifeness there. Basically what I’m trying to say is that I feel like when I first started blogging, in the back of my mind, I might’ve been more reserved in terms of letting my voice and my personality show through my writing. Now, as I am more comfortable with blogging and everything, I think I make more of a conscious effort to be ME in my posts, and show more of who I am than before. And I love it? It makes the blogging experience so much the more genuine and I wish I hadn’t been so worried about my voice and personality and what other nonsense had been going through my head back at the start, lol. 😉

4. Creating graphics is nothing to fret over!

Back when I first started blogging, I had been in awe of all the amazing graphics I saw on other people’s blogs. When I saw that the blogger himself/herself created the graphic, I was in even more awe! Yes, I know I know. Hush children. No judging, remember? XD Come on, I can’t have been the only one in this situation, right? But anyway, yes, I was in awe. And then I became confused as to what I would do in terms of graphics. I love design and appreciate art (though I’m terrible at art like drawing, music and the like) After all, pictures always make everything so much the more interesting! But as I discovered later on, creating graphics is not too difficult! After searching online (because duh, Google has basically all the answers. LOL) I found many helpful graphic design websites, like PicMonkey, Canva, among others. My only wish was that I took the initiative to find out how to make graphics much earlier! It’s not that difficult, really, when you have the right tools.

5. It takes time to get successful stats and followers.

Although the definition of success depends from person to person, the universal key to remember is that everything takes time–especially stats and followers. Building up a successful following takes a while (most of the time). Having the types of expectations that you’ll get 100 followers in a day sadly holds no weight and will get you nowhere. For me, I wouldn’t say I had such an expectation, but it did take a while to accept that I won’t be receiving tons and tons of likes, comments, and followers in just a little bit of time. 😉 I did end up accepting it in the end (it might’ve been hard to find amusement in blogging if I hadn’t) but I do wish I knew this when I first started blogging! The first couple of weeks can be tough (lol), when you kind of find that no one is actually reading your posts and you’re talking to yourself. XD But the important thing is not to be worried or stressed out! It’ll happen eventually.

6. It’s okay if I have to go on hiatus.

This is something which I still don’t like to do very much, LOL, but it is especially something I wish I knew back when I first started blogging! I was in grade 11 when I first started, and at times (lol, who am I kidding, almost all the time) it became tough to juggle so many things at once; school, reading, blogging, there’s only so much time you have to spend for each. And sometimes taking a break is what we need to balance everything, you know? I know that now, but it would definitely have helped if I had known that before. 😀 I think, it felt like if I took a hiatus and didn’t blog, for, I don’t know, even a week or something, I’d lose followers, and people would forget about my blog, and whatnot. It’s a worry that’s long gone now, but as a newbie, I couldn’t help but think that way, lolllllll.

7. Other bloggers don’t bite!

As a newbie in the book blogging community, where I was surrounded with a bunch of other bloggers who had so many more followers than my humble, like, 10 (lol I don’t actually know how much I had back then) it definitely could be intimidating to actually find the courage to talk to them! Now, I know it’s ridiculous to think that way–bloggers don’t bite! They’re just as human and just as friendly as the rest of us, and it’s 100% okay to talk to them. Thank goodness I ended up talking to other bloggers in the end after all; or else I’d be quite a hermit and quite lonely, lolllll. XD Talking to these bloggers back at the start, and even now, created such lovely friendships and it’s the greatest. Truly. ❤

8. It is impossible to read each and every single blog post that appears in my blog feed.

Truer words have never been spoken, if I do say so myself. I mean, have YOU been able to read every blog post that arrives in your Reader? Didn’t think so. But back then, I tried quite hard to do so (and comment too!) which, proved to be quite futile in the end save for the posts I actually did manage to read and comment on. I followed quite a lot of blogs back then (and even more now!) and there were SO MANY posts appearing all the time. It’s impossible to read them all! Don’t fret if you can’t read/comment on each post; I doubt it’s even possible unless you follow, like, less than maybe 10 blogs. Which I doubt is the case? I did (and still do) put an effort into commenting and reading at least some of the posts that appear in my Reader, but it would’ve definitely saved me a lot of time had I not attempted to read all, or almost all, of the posts that I find. 😉

9. It’s okay to be different.

Whether it be in terms of what you post, what your blog looks like, how you talk and how you fangirl, it’s okay if it’s not like everyone else. Normal is overrated! Be unique, be yourself, and that’s all that matters. I think, when I first started blogging, I wanted more to be like the other bloggers? Kind of? A smidge? Not that I was afraid to be different, but more that I felt like I should be like everyone else. Wrong! Totally wrong. There is no need whatsoever for you to be like everyone else, and when I accepted this, it became so much more fun for me and more, I don’t know, free. It’s partly the reason why I’m still holding on to the theme I currently have (light text on dark background), despite thinking about changing it. It’s a lot more uncommon, as far as I’ve noticed!

10. I’m blogging for MYSELF first and foremost.

Perhaps one of the most important things I wished I knew as a newbie blogger, this is one that I still remind myself about. When blogging gets tough and we get caught up in the stats game and it becomes, you know, less of a hobby and more of a job, this is the best thing to think of! We blog for ourselves and no one else, and that’s what matters. (LOLLLL notice how all the other ones I ramble about FOREVER yet this one I spare three sentences. This says nothing about importance or anything! I’m just lost at what other things to say. :P)


Alright, so that’s it for this post! The 10 things I wish I knew as a newbie blogger. Don’t leave me hanging; do let me know your thoughts in the comments! ❤ I’d love to know which of the YOU wish you knew as well, when you first started blogging. Feel free to let me know all and any of your thoughts! I’d love to chat. Oh, and just a little note; I might be disappearing, in and out for the next couple of weeks! It’s getting super busy and it’s incredibly difficult to keep up with blogging sometimes. But I will still be around!

Anyway, I hope you guys are enjoying your Tuesday! ❤

Until the Next Meal, Analee

 

Book Snacks is 1 Year Old…! | Blogiversary/Birthday Giveaway Time! Plus a survey. And a game. Yay!

Giveaway

Hiiii! Not so long ago (or was it long ago?? I don’t remember. Roughly 2 weeks ago?? Maybe? Whatever. You know what I mean) I reached my 1-year blogiversary, and mentioned a giveaway on the way, am I right? Well, I’m here to keep good on that promise! I cannot stress enough how grateful I am for all your support; you guys have all become my friends, and I only want to give you guys something back for all the things you have given me! Okay, yes yes I know I’m sounding extra cheesy today—but hey, don’t judge. I’ll be back to the fangirling-yet-unemotional chocolate bar you all know soon enough.

Point is: I’m celebrating with a giveaway! And it happens to be my birthday near the end of this month, so I guess I’m celebrating that too, lol. So. My birthday isn’t till the 24th of this month, but whatever, right?? My blogiversary was a couple of weeks ago anyway. I know you’re all eager for the giveaway, but there are a few things I must mention first…

Blog Survey

This is totally optional, but I’d love to get some feedback on my blog! I created a survey, and I’d appreciate it so much if you guys took the time to answer. You can also get a few extra entries for the giveaway by doing so! Only some of the questions are mandatory, but, of course, I’d love it so much the more if you completed the whole thing! Here it is:

(If that doesn’t seem to work for you, you can get the link to it here.)

Thank you SO MUCH in advance!! ❤

Scavenger Hunt

A scavenger hunt?? You ask. Why yes. Basically you just have to copy and answer the 5 questions in a comment below. To find the to the questions, you’ll have to scavenge around my blog! You don’t have to do it, of course, but you get the chance for more giveaway entries if you play the game.

Though, just a little disclaimer: this game can’t be credited as my idea. I actually scavenged it off from other blogs who’ve done something like this before, like Cait @ Paper Fury and a few other bloggers. (Haha, get it? Scavenged? Scavenger hunt? Okay, okay, I’ll stop.)

Some of these questions may have more than 1 right answer, by the way. You all know how bad I am with questions requesting only one answer! Are you ready for this? Okay, here they are:

  1. A book I read in 2016 that I rated 5 stars?
  2. A book that released 3 days ago (March 8th) that I can’t wait to read?
  3. One of my favourite genres?
  4. One (or more) of my 2016 bookish/bloggish resolutions?
  5. A book I often fangirl about?
  6. *Bonus: Something I’m scared of (it’s an animal, by the way.)

If you’re able to answer these questions without scavenging too much, good for you! Though I think they’re pretty easy to answer? Kind of? Either way, good luck! May the force of books and chocolate be with you. (I haven’t ever watched Star Wars, btw *cue gasps of horror*—yes, I know—so I hope that reference makes sense?)

*This actually will only be having one answer? I mentioned this A LONG time ago, in a post–so maybe if you’ve been here for awhile you might know it? Otherwise, you can always scavenge for the answer! 😛

Aaaaaand, the giveaway!

So, what you’ve all been waiting for! But before you guys go clickety-click and start entering entries, here are a few rules and things to remember:

  • One winner gets to choose a book from The Book Depository up to a value of $25 (in Canadian dollars).
  • Open internationally as long as Book Depository ships to your country. (Details here.)
  • Giveaway begins today (March 11th, 2016) and ends in around 3 weeks on April 1st, 2016 (Don’t worry, if you’re the winner, this won’t all be an April Fool’s joke. XD)
  • After the contest time I will be randomly choosing the winner through Rafflecopter. (On April 2nd, 2016)
  • Winner has 48 hours to respond before I choose another winner.
  • You must be 18 years of age to enter or have parental consent to provide me your mailing address.
  • Winner’s personal information will be kept private and will not be publicized or used in any way other than to ship the book.
  • Entries will be checked and deleted if they’re don’t qualify—so no cheating please!

Now, time for the giveaway! Here it is. Gobble it up, guys. You’re welcome. 😀 Now talk to me in the comments: what book would you like to receive, from TBD? Oh, and here’s some chocolate if you participate in the scavenger hunt or do the survey. ❤ Hope you guys are all enjoying your Friday!

Until the Next Meal, Analee