Top Ten Tuesday: Book Series I DON’T Want to Abandon AKA Book Series TBR

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This week’s TTT topic is “The Last Ten Books I Abandoned” but I decided to tweak it to “Book Series I DON’T Want to Abandon” (aka my Book Series to finish TBR), because I don’t like to dwell on books that I no longer care/want to read. Plus, I love making any sorta of post that resembles a TBR! I’ve made some yearly book series TBRs in the past (in both 2018 and 2019) but haven’t created one for this year! Did I really achieve the ones from past years? Erm….no, but I still thought it would be helpful to create a round-up of the series I truly want to go back and finish!

So all series on this list are ones that I’ve started (read at the least the first book) and haven’t finished. I’m not going to include recent/ongoing series, unless they’ve been around for awhile. I have so many other series that I’ve started and I’ve never finished, but I’m giving these ones priority because I own copies of most of them.

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.


1. The Queen of the Tearling Series by Erika Johansen

I’ve been saying that I need to finish this series for years and on over a dozen posts. AND I HAVE NO CLUE WHY I HAVEN’T ALREADY?!!? I loved the first 2 books so much! This year, it’ll definitely happen this year! Right?!?

2. Mercy Series by Rebecca Lim

Same goes with this one. And I’ve literally read the first book 3 times?? Why am I such a slacker when it comes to series?

3. The Malediction Trilogy by Danielle L. Jensen

I adored the first one, found the second mediocre, and the third seemed intriguing with the situation quickly escalating and half way through it I somehow abandoned it? I don’t know why, but I wanna give it another try now. I follow Danielle Jensen on Instagram and it seems like she has some great ongoing series right now, but I told myself I can’t check them out/buy them until I finish this trilogy first.

4. Elemental Blessings Series by Sharon Shinn

A series of companion novels, but still counts! I LOVED the first one, enjoyed the second one, and never? continued?! Which is stupid because (even tho I usually dislike people on covers) these covers are gorgeous and continuing on would be the perfect excuse to make another Thriftbooks order! Some day soon…because I can seriously never have enough books with elemental magic in my reading life!

5. An Ember in the Ashes Series by Sabaa Tahir

I wanna hop back on this train while the series is still ongoing. I know the fourth and final book releases at this end of the year, and I read the first book YEARS ago. I’m definitely due to reread it and hopefully continue on; I have all 3 of the books, albeit in diff editions tho, lol (a paperback, hardcover, and UK paperback respectively 😅).

6. The Defy Trilogy by Sara B. Larson

A bit scared to reread the first two books in this series because since reading them I’ve seen many negative reviews and I worry I might hold the same views now that I’m older. Though I love the girl-disguised-as-a-boy-because-of-a-misogynistic-society trope AKA the Mulan trope (tho I am now aware how this trope can veer into being problematic and thus it’s actually another worry of mine in rereading these books).

7. The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer

I’ve literally read all but the last book! I adored the first 3, so why did I never return to this series?? Everyone raves about these books and I’m OBSESSED with fairytale retellings. Even tho I don’t own any copies, I’m pretty sure my sister owns most/all of them, so I can easily get a hold of them. So why have I been lacking on this series??

8. Worldwalker Trilogy by Josephine Angelini

Another series where I got half way through one of the books (the second to be exact) and some how abandoned it?!?! This was such an interesting concept–a story involving witches and parallel worlds. Plus, the love interest is name is Rowan, so the series has to be good, doesn’t it? Haha 😀

9. Starcrossed Trilogy by Josephine Angelini

Why can I never finish a Angelini series? I adored the first book–read it twice in fact–and enjoyed the sequel. Why did I never continue? Also a bit worried about rereading; I feel like I’ll find the books to be very telling of their time (aka very late 2000s/early 2010s YA that), ya know, very cringey to a contemporary and now older perspective? (I mean look at those covers! ya got you’re classic girl is a pretty, flowy dress aka what all the covers looked like back then)

10. The Witchlands Series by Susan Dennard

I know this series isn’t finished, but I’m rather curious about the rest of the series currently out. I’ve only read the first one once, even bought a copy of it at a secondhand bookshop at my local library so I could reread it. I remember it having a great female friendship, so I def wanna give the series another try. (Plus I wanna become more of a fan to justify the fact that I have a map of the world up on my wall 😅)

(wow there are a total of 36 books on this list–eek!)


Have you read any of these books or series? What did you think? Please help motivate me to continue with these series (or tell me why I should not)!

What are some series you still need to finish?

If you participated in TTT this week feel free to link up your post in the comments below–I would love to check them out!

April Wrap-Up: I Finished My Last Semester of College! | My Semi-Hiatus ENDS HERE!

monthly wrap up

It’s finally May and I’M SO HAPPY! I’ve finished college FOREVER!! (not that it’s fully hit me–and probs won’t for another month or even till the fall).

This also means I now have time to ACTUALLY blog and read! So I’m announcing that my semi-hiatus has officially ended! From now on, I will regularly be posting (which will be about every 3 days or twice a week), actually responding to comments in a timely manner, and (hopefully) improving my blog hopping!

Despite finishing up the semester, I actually accomplished a decent amount of reading again! I finished a total of 6 books in April. Though half of them were for school, and the other half were erotic romances from Kindle Unlimited, but ya know, I’m okay with that. 😅

(Also, please be impressed that I’m posting this wrap-up during the first half of the month, lol)


BOOKS READ:

three books placed in front of a window

1. The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell

Rating: 4.5 stars

This was such as unique and genre-defying novel! All of the characters are SO AMAZING and incredibly fleshed out and individualistic. Tho it’s sci-fi and involves space exploration/alien contact, it also deals with a lot of intense subjects like grief, depression, suicidal thoughts, and questioning faith (which I know is a turn off for many—including myself tbh—but so many of the characters hold unique & unexpected perspectives on faith and it was super fascinating). Simply incredible! (Sad that I’ve heard iffy things about the sequel tho)

2. The Two Towers by J.R.R. Tolkien

Rating: 4.5 stars

Y’all already what these books are about and how great they are, so I won’t linger. I loved diving deeper into the action in the 2nd volume, tho I still found it a bit slow at times. Totally here for all the bromances (that really should be romances, smh). Samwise Gamgee is my hero.

3. The Return of the King by J.R.R. Tolkien

Rating: 4.5 stars

Why does Tolkien write such INCREDIBLE BUT BITTERSWEET ENDINGS?!?

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Now for the smutty romance section of my monthly wrap-up…

4. Tangled Vows by Anna Stone

Rating: 3 stars

Have I mentioned I’m a hardcore Anna Stone fan now? I love the whole fake marriage leading to romance trope. (psst, how can I get paid to be someone’s stay-at-home fake wife???) But while I loved the dynamic, it definitely felt rushed; I kept expecting there to be a lot more to the story. Honestly, I thought these characters deserved a whole other book to flesh out their romance.

5. Smut by Karina Halle

Rating: 3.75 stars

I’ve waited so long to read this hate-to-love romance between two creative writing college students (who write their own smut together)! This story definitely worked up to the romance–nothing happened between the two characters until the second half. It was a super fun read and I also adored how Halle used the book to address the judgement that both (self-published) romance writers and romance readers face. Definitely gonna have to look into more books by this author.

6. Before You Say I Do by Clare Lydon

Rating: 3.5 stars

I was immediately struck by Lydon’s fleshed-out and confident writing style. I adored seeing the connection between Abby and Jordan. The ending was a total breezed-over HEA, but I adored it nonetheless. This book seemed to lean more towards romance than erotic romance. Will also be looking into more books by this author!


MAY TBR:

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I’m participating in the SeaMAYden-a-thon this May, and I’ve already posted my TBR here!

Additionally (and ambitiously), I’m hoping to finish up some of those books that have been sitting on my currently reading shelf for the longest time, but we’ll see. 😆


RANDOM LIFE UPDATES:

  • On April 30th, I finished the remainder of my final projects and officially FINISHED COLLEGE!!
    • Holy crap guys, I’m now like an adult adult and need to do things like find a job and ahhhhhhh (tho I don’t know how likely that is during quarantine, but I’m still gonna try)
  • My college’s English Department hosted a reading for senior creative writing students over Zoom and even though it was nerve-wrecking and awkward, I’m glad I got the chance to see the faces of my profs again and celebrate a bit with them ❤
  • On Easter, my housemates and I celebrated together by eating lots of yummy food–each of us made a different meal. I was in charge of dessert (yes, that’s a meal, and one that should be given greater importance), and I made individual chocolate cakes with gooey peanut butter centers. Under-baked them a bit, but they were still super rich & yummy!

six chocolate peanut butter mini cakes on a plate

  • I dyed my hair pink! Well, it’s more like I gave it a pink-ish tint, but still exciting nonetheless!
    • Yeah, as you can see by the pic below, not wearing gloves at first was a mistake
    • For anyone curious, I used Overtone‘s color-depositing conditioner (for brown hair), so it’s like a semi-permanent dye. You’re suppose to replenish it with their color-infused conditioners after washings, but I’m kinda bad at it so my hair has been fading a bit 😅
  • Managed to sneak away from my studies long enough to take some nice, meandering walks (and listen to an audiobook!). And I even remembered to document them with (cute?) selfies!
a young woman in a baseball cap and wearing earbuds
Can ya see the pink in my hair? Sorta?

How was your April? Read any good books to recommend? Did anyone else graduate or finish their semester? Are you also finding walking & baking to be helpful?

And seriously, if anyone wants/needs a friend to talk to, feel free to comment below or message me on Goodreads!

February Wrap-Up: Started a Trial of Kindle Unlimited and Now I’m Reading All the Smutty Romances, whoops

monthly wrap up

Dang it, I really meant to have this up at the beginning of March–where did the time go? I mean, I know where the time went…but I guess bonus points for me that it’s still March when I’m posting this?? (even tho it’s only barely still March)

So yeah, even tho this is super late, I am happy to say that I read a lot more in February than I did in January (7 books compared to January’s 2!). We’re half of them super smutty romances I got off Kindle Unlimited?? YEP, but smut books are still books, and thank goodness for them, because otherwise I’d be struggling with my GR goal (yes, I’ve been binge-reading them that much).


BOOKS READ:

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1. What I Want You to See by Catherine Linka

Rating: 3.5 stars

I participated in the FFBC blog tour for this book in the beginning of February! It was an interesting read and definitely not like one I’ve read before. You can see my full review here.

two books on a light blue background surrounded by fake white flowers on a vine
Guys, I’m so proud of this image. Like, I actually took a bookish pic that I think looks pretty??

2. Blankets by Craig Thompson

Rating: 4.25 stars

We covered this graphic memoir in my Senior Seminar class! It was very intense, emotional, and captivating. And also SUPER LONG for a graphic novel (582 pages!). There are a lot of potential triggers in this memoir tho, so make sure to read with caution if you pick it up!

3. The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

Rating: 4 stars

If you haven’t noticed yet, my lit class is working our way through JRR Tolkien’s works. The Hobbit was such a fun adventure and I’m so glad I’ve finally picked up this fantasy classic!

little women cover

4. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

Rating: 4 stars

I actually picked up a classic?! Who am I? Well, actually my book club voted to read this book, so I didn’t really have a choice. 😅 Though it definitely dragged it some places and was heavily ladled with morals, I was surprised to find myself growing to adore the March sisters and Laurie (especially Jo). The writing was easy to listen to (yes, I also actually listened to an audiobook!) and it was great to see the characters grow up. Shortly after finishing, my friends and I went out and saw the newest movie adaptation and omg, it was INCREDIBLE! I highly recommend it–it’s a definitely must see if you’ve read the book.

5. Being Hers by Anna Stone

Rating: 3 stars

6. Her Surrender by Anna Stone

Rating: 2.75 stars

7. Hers to Keep by Anna Stone

Rating: 3.25 stars

Immediately upon starting my Kindle Unlimited Trial, I found myself binge-reading Anna Stone’s BDSM f/f erotic romance series, Irresistibly Bound. I literally binge-read all four of these books within a week (I technically finished the last book in March, so you’ll see it in my next wrap-up!). I won’t deny that these books are very simplistic and formulaic, but the consistency was definitely a comfort and a nice palette cleanser. And I love how Stone’s characters’ relationships always stress the importance of communication. Hmm, I’m not sure that I could pick a favorite out of these. I love Being Hers because it particularly showcased communication and its importance. I enjoyed Her Surrender because one of the women was a sassy librarian and it had less BDSM elements. And I adored Hers to Keep for the relationship and the setting. Lol so basically I loved them all for different reasons.
I definitely plan to read all of Stone’s books now and continue to follow her career, so prepare to see more of her books in my future wrap-ups!


MARCH TBR:

  • The Woman in the Window– This month’s read for the book club I read
  • The Downstairs Girl– The next read for a YA book club I wanna participate in!
  • House of Earth and Blood– Come my spring break later this month, I am ready to devour this book
  • The Girl in Red– One of my GR groups is reading this is month and I actually own a copy so fingers crossed I can also squeeze it in, tho it’s relatively low priority

Well, these were my TBR plans at the beginning of the month, but due to the pandemic/my college shifting to online classes/my book clubs no longer able to meet, there’s not really any motivation to read these books. And I just finished House of Earth and Blood, lol. So for the rest of the month I will probably just focus on mood reading and finishing my current reads. (lol I say this as if there aren’t only 5 days left)


RANDOM LIFE UPDATES:

Honestly, February feels like ages ago and kinda irrelevant, so this will be a short list

  • Mid-Winter Break– Basically this was just a long weekend at the beginning of February where I got to go home! I got to see my fam and animals which was great but I also spent most of my time doing homework & studying for a midterm so it was not as relaxing as I had hoped
  • I was accepted to NYU’s Summer Publishing Institute! And one of my friends did to!
    • From today’s standpoint with the corona virus pandemic, I don’t know if the program will actually be able to run this summer. But if it doesn’t, I will likely defer to next summer.
  • Finally posted my 2019 Wrap-up! You can check it out here if ya want.
  • Had our first (and technically last) book club meeting of the semester. We read Little Women, which I mentioned above. There were only 3 of us there, but it was a fun discussion!
  • Finished a season of intramural inner tube water polo. Yes, you read that right. Water polo, in inner tubes! It was a fun and crazy season and even though we didn’t win the final game, we def won in my heart *not bitter at all here*.

How was your February? How are you all holding up? Have you read any of the books I mentioned?

Would love to talk with any of you, so please comment or feel free to friend & message me on Goodreads!

Posting Schedule Update | WWW Wednesday: March 18th, 2020

WWW Wednesday

Hi, all! I hope everyone is currently safe and healthy. So…it’s been 3 weeks since I last posted, and honestly I didn’t even realize it till I looked at the date of my last post. 😅 School has been crazy (as always) and especially overwhelming with the recent decision of my college to kick us to online classes. Luckily, this week is my spring break so I’ve been able to be in denial and hang out with my housemates but this has also resulted in me having like no motivation to do really anything fun in terms of individual activities e.g. blogging, reading, writing.

So what I’m trying to say here is… I have absolutely no clue how often I’ll be posting, if at all, for the next couple of months. I would love to get this post up today, then come back with my February wrap-up this weekend, and then a TTT next Tuesday and stay strong in my reading and blogging game during this social distancing time in the U.S.. But I don’t know how realistic that is and I don’t want to hold myself to any potentially stressful expectations.

So yeah…please don’t be surprised if I go on a hiatus or a semi-hiatus (even tho I kinda already was, lol).

Wow okay, so sorry for that long intro, let’s get into what I’ve been reading! Due to school and actually being able to pick up a fun book yesterday, I actually sorta have books to talk about!

(Also, for those of you who don’t know: WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme hosted by Taking on a World of Words where you answer 3 ‘what’ questions about your reading.)


What did you recently finish reading?

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Last week I finished reading The Fellowship of the Ring! YES, I’m finally reading The Lord of the Rings! It’s for my Tolkien & Medieval Lit class. And lol yes, my copy really does have this old cover, albeit in somewhat better condition than this image from GR. I’m really loving reading about Middle Earth (so far I’ve read The Hobbit and most of The Silmarillion) and the antics and sass of all these characters. As expected, I’m adoring the characters of Sam and Gandulf. I did find the beginning/first half to be slow, but I can’t wait to see how the story continues!


What are you currently reading?

  • The Silmarillion– STILL need to go back and finish the chapters my class skipped over.
  • The Tolkien Reader– Read a couple sections for class, and I believe we’re coming back to it again later.
  • The Unspoken Name– WHOOPS, I haven’t touched this in a month, but like…hopefully I’ll return to it soon?
  • House of Earth and Blood– I finally found the motivation to pick this up and ahhh, I’m adoring it! Yes, it’s still full of SJM’s dramatic writing and stereotypes, but it’s exactly what I need right now. I started last night around 10pm and I’m already 100+ pages in.

What do you think you’ll read next?

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Honestly, I have no clue? I have a couple books from the library and lots that I own sitting on my shelf. Perhaps The Girl in Red, but also I don’t know if I could do horror right now? I also just wanna focus on my current reads. Hmmm, I’ll probably just try mood reading because I don’t wanna force myself to read anything else than I already will have to for school.

For classes tho I will be starting the next LOTR book and The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell!


How is everyone holding up? Anything I can do to help? Are you also struggling with your blogging*/reading? Read any good books recently?

Also, if you participated in WWW Wednesday this week (or have any other recent posts ya wanna share), feel free to drop the link in the comments; I would love to check it out!

*I must say though that I feel quite a bit better after finally getting around to writing a blog post and being freshly showered. 😊