Tag Archives: Book Tags

Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag

Hi everyone! It’s almost July and you know what that means…I’m living through a massive heatwave right now oh my god.. (Kudos to my parents for buying me a fan, so I feel a little less as if I’m melting into a puddle!) Actually, it means it’s past the mid-year point! So, here I reflect on how this year has been for me so far in the realm of reading. Since I’ve edited this post, I actually am two books ahead of this screenshot (so, 17/30) but the 15/30 was actually very satisfying so I decided to keep it in for that reason 🙂

I found this tag after reading posts from two other amazing blogs you should check out: Forever and Everly & Truffle’s Literary Wonders !

I tag Kay at Musings of a Middle Child and Ahaana at Windows to Worlds, if you’re interested in doing it (no pressure, though!) 🙂

Best book you’ve read so far

I Wish You All the Best

I loved this book so much and read it in a day! Check out my review here.

Best sequel you’ve read so far

New Moon (Twilight, #2)

The only sequel I’ve read is New Moon… and it definitely wasn’t the best. So more like worst? It was just boring for the majority of the book, but it did pick up near the end!

New release you haven’t read yet but want to

I’m pretty behind on the new release train so a lot… I just started reading Rule of Wolves last night, though! I’ve heard a lot of mixed reviews, so I’m excited to see what I think of it. (I’ve narrowly avoided some spoilers)

Most anticipated release for the 2nd half of the year

Any way the wind blows by rainbow rowell

I thought most of my anticipated releases had already come out, but then I remembered Any Where The Wind Blows by Rainbow Rowell*. After reading Wayward Son, I need to see how the heck this series is gonna end! A lot of people seemed frustrated with how it left Simon and Baz’s relationship, but I personally thought it was a very realistic sequel after the events of Carry On.

*Also just a note on Rainbow Rowell: a lot of readers have pointed out problematic aspects in her books like Eleanor & Park which you can read about here.

If you buy your books, I would recommend supporting own voices and marginalized authors where possible! If you’re interested in reading something from a problematic author, try an alternative like borrowing the book or buying second hand. Also, make sure you are taking steps to acknowledge any problematic content and read critically! Since this is a new release, I’m planning just to wait for it from the library. When I finally read it, I’ll probably also make a TikTok discussing my thoughts, along with the one issue I’ve noticed in the series so far.

Biggest Disappointment

The Darkest Part of the Forest

I was just expecting a little more after I really enjoyed The Folk of the Air series, but unfortunately this wasn’t it. Read my review for The Darkest Part of the Forest here!

Biggest Surprise

I hadn’t heard much at all about The Black Flamingo by Dean Atta before having to read it for class, but it pleasantly surprised me! It is written in prose as well which was different, and it was done so beautifully.

Favourite new author (debut or new to you)

I’m sure I’ll find one by the end of the year, but for now I’m not sure! I really loved Casey Mcquiston’s writing style in One Last Stop, but I think I’d have to read more from them to say if they are a new favourite or not! Also, I haven’t gotten to read These Violent Delights yet, but I already love the author, Chloe Gong, from watching her TikToks.

Newest Fictional Crush

Hmm no new ones really, but I started Rule of Wolves, and I’m very happy to be reunited with my favourite privateer turned demon-king, Nikolai Lanstov :))

Newest Favourite Character

Moony, Remu, “Casanova of Gryffindor Tower”, Remus Lupin… So, I fell into the big hole that is the marauders fandom this year, and to have Ron summarize what it’s been like:

You're gonna suffer but you'll be happy about it | Harry potter gif, Harry  potter movies, Track and field

It started with the occasional marauders edit or cosplay I found on my TikTok FYP, and then I found myself reading a 500K word fanfic… I can’t get over how insanely talented so many people in the fandom are in the content they create! It really is what makes me love the marauders so much. I wanted to pick one or two of my favourite TikToks/ creators to share, but I really couldn’t decide..so, I sorted my faves by if they’re happy (they just give me so much serotonin) or sad marauder videos:

Happy/Funny: Mystic, Alec, Ace & El (real-life wolfstar), Andy, surviving the heartbreak

Sad: Liz, Molly, Parus, Dasha, this take on the AS trend

What’s great is that there is so much left untouched in their story by JKR (as she’s a shit), and fans have just created their own headcanons and narratives on what the era was like. Although I always adored the marauders since I first was a young HP fan, (POA supremacy) being older and discovering the fandom, I have learned so much more. Especially in terms of Remus’s character, I learned how he was heavily queer-coded and that many fans find chronic illness/ pain representation in his character. (I learned about more problematic things JKR has done, like said that lycanthropy is a metaphor for HIV & AIDS…)

Though I already liked Remus’s character, the marauders fandom has added so much more depth to him and made him one of my favourites. (Did I just bomb this post with a tangent on the marauders? maybe..)

Book that made you cry

Parachutes

Parachutes by Kelly Yang (click the link to read my short Goodreads review!) While reading Dani’s story, I was rooting for her so hard, and I was so proud of her in the end that tears came to my eyes. Reading the author’s note further made me appreciate the hard work and emotional labour Yang put in to write the story, as it was influenced by her own experience with sexual assault.

Book that made you happy

One Last Stop

My current read is One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston, and it has made me pretty happy so far! (hopefully still when I read the end..)The characters are really loveable, and there are so many moments they make me chuckle.

The most beautiful book you’ve bought so far this year (or received)

I recently bought Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley and look at that gorgeous cover! 😍 I was gifted Rule of Wolves by Leigh Bardugo which also has a pretty sick cover, but I especially adore the silver foil which is on the book beneath the dustjacket!

What books do you need to read by the end of the year?

Well, here’s just a sneak peak at my never ending TBR!

Book to movie adaptation

I don’t think I’ve watched any book to movie adaptations, but I did watch Shadow and Bone! While it is far from perfect, I did enjoy a lot, especially the visuals! While I didn’t love reading the Grisha trilogy, I think the show and the cast did a great job at bringing the world to life. Read more of my thoughts on the show here.

I also did a “mid-year check in” on my BookTok if you’d like to check that out! Anyways, hope you’re doing well and staying cool if you’re also stuck in the heatwave!

Any thoughts on the books I’ve shared? How many have you read so far this year? Any books coming out soon that you’re excited for? Let me know by commenting below! Talk to you soon…

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Shadow and Bone Trailer: Thoughts & Theories

Hi everyone! With Rule of Wolves getting out before release day as well as the full Shadow and Bone trailer being leaked early, there’s been a lot of excitement in the Grishaverse this past week. Having seen the full trailer which has given us a lot more of an idea as to how the two series Shadow and Bone and Six of Crows will be adapted, I thought I’d share my thoughts and theories. (I will be going into detail about the plots and characters from Shadow and Bone and Six of Crows so warning for mild spoilers!) For brevity from now on, I will be referring to them as S&B and SoC. *Cover photo is from Shadow and Bone Netflix*

Theories:

So, before the release of the trailer, there was a lot of confusion on how these two series were to be adapted in one show. They are separated in time and space with S&B being set in Ravka while SoC is set in Kerch (among other locations) years after S&B. However, SoC does utilize flashbacks in order to tell each of the character’s backstories, including how Inej became a member of the Dregs and how Nina and Matthias meet. 

Being the namesake of the show, S&B has seemed to be the focus, with some kind of a prequel to the story of the Dregs in SoC. With the full trailer, it has become more evident how they plan to do this. I am crediting this to my friend Karli who sent me audio messages pointing this out after watching the trailer when I was still too excited to think coherently. 

The trailer moves from S&B clips to SoC clips with Kaz saying “she’s real” to Inej. It seems that at the Crow Club perhaps Per Haskell (?) is giving a mission to the Dregs to bring him Alina for “1 million kruge.” The clips at this time show Kaz, Inej, and Jesper who we know from SoC are already working together. In a few of the clips, it looks as if Kaz may be dressed in a Ravkan guard uniform and in another, it looks like a Ravkan flag behind Inej (heist time?). This also explains why Wylan, who has a large part in the novel SoC would not be cast yet, as he is the final edition to their crew.

Though Nina and Matthias have been cast, we have not seen too much of them except for a still of them sitting in a snowy location covered with furs. This would work with their flashback scenes from SoC where they must survive together after the shipwreck. There is a quick shot of Matthias in what looks like a cell which I initially associated with them breaking him out of Hellgate, but to work with this timeline, it could just as easily be the end of the flashback when Nina sends him there. So instead of the heist that they embark on in SoC to the Ice Court, it seems as if Kaz, Inej, and Jesper are on a heist to Ravka to find Alina.

Thoughts: 

While this is definitely a bit different than the original events of the books, I am excited for it. I like the idea of a prequel for the SoC characters as it goes along with their storylines and doesn’t interfere with what happens later on. Essentially, we are just getting more screen time with them! I also have faith in the changes they are making to the show as Leigh Bardugo has been heavily involved and I trust she knows what to do in her world to make this work. 

Although I am not as attached to S&B as I am to SoC, I am really loving the visuals, casting, and everything we have seen with the series so far. I can’t deny that it looks SO GOOD. Even though it is an interesting plot, I remember finding it a bit slow at times, so I think the visuals of the show and (addition of the crows) will leave me enjoying it a lot! With the show coming out on Netflix in just over 2 weeks, you bet I will be counting down the days until I can Netflix party it with my friends.

How are you feeling about the upcoming show? Any other thoughts or theories I should hear? Let me know! 🙂

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How do I Annotate my Books?

Journalling, sticky notes, writing in the margins? There are many ways to annotate your books and make them more personal to you. Here are some of the ways I have annotated books in the past!

 Sticky Tabs

The most frequent way I have annotated books is by using sticky tabs! This is the least permanent way as they come off easily and do not damage the pages, which makes it ideal for books you are borrowing from friends or the library. I’ve seen people who have an actual sticky note key and system (pink for romance, green for the plot, etc.) However, I usually am not sure what I plan to tab until reading so I tend not to go for a system and just tag moments I like – character interactions, quotes I like, or other points I think I might want to revisit later on. Sometimes I like to just reread my favourite parts of a book by going through the tabs in my copy!

Writing in books

This isn’t something I’ve done a lot, but I think there’s something so satisfying about seeing a book filled up with annotations showing how well-loved it is! The only books I have done this in are my copies of the Six of Crows duology by Leigh Bardugo. As I was reading them I could already tell they were going to be favourites of mine (plus I didn’t want to disrupt the sprayed edges) so I decided to underline quotes and write some notes in the margins.

As I reread Six of Crows in the summer, I also added to these along with putting bigger sticky notes with important plot points and names of the background characters/ gangs in the front of my copy to refer to. I decided to do this so I would be able to better understand the intricacies of the plot the second time around, and discuss it with my friends!

I usually am hesitant to write in my books in case I do end up giving them away or selling them later on, but there are a few like Six of Crows that I love and enjoy making my copies more personal. If you are looking for ways to personalize your books, try a book stamp or embosser! I actually got both for my birthday and they have been really fun to use on my favourite books in my collection, especially when I might lend them out! They both say “From the library of Victoria”. Here is what an embossed page looks like:

Personalized Embosser

Another way to “write” in your books is by using small sticky notes that you can leave between the pages! This is also a cool way to annotate a book for a friend. It can be a way to highlight parts that remind you of them and make it really personal or however you like. Kayla actually did this for my birthday with a beautiful edition of The Bell Jar, and I cannot wait to read it! It feels like extra little surprises waiting for me to read inside the book. I think I might try this method more in books as it is a way to jot down a short thought while also being removable if you end up wanting to take them out, or if it’s not your book. Right now, I am reading her copy of New Moon, so I decided to leave her some notes of my thoughts throughout which I hope she finds entertaining :).  Another great thing about annotations is that they can help you to organize and remember your thoughts and feelings about a book, especially if you plan to create a post when you finish. Which brings me to my next point about journaling…

Journalling

If you don’t wish to write in your books, you might keep a journal where you can write the page number along with your thoughts. While I tend to sticky note most of my books, I often do this with books I have to return to the library and do not have my own copy of! I’ve also gotten into creative journaling for books which is a whole other topic, but can be a fun way to display some of your favourite quotes or even write your thoughts on the book next to images (drawings, stickers, photos, fanart) of your choice!

My Six of Crows/Crooked Kingdom Journal Pages

Digital/Ebooks

I don’t read eBooks a lot but when I do, one of my favourite things is the annotation function! You can easily highlight and leave comments on the text, as well as search up certain words or quotes which comes in very handy. I read the entire All For The Game trilogy in ebook format on my iPad a few years ago, and it’s cool to be able to look at the comments I left! While Goodreads allows users to do status updates for books they are currently reading, I often don’t want to constantly pause to update or include potential spoilers so those turn into more general thoughts. Another thing I’ve seen people do is share threads of the book they are currently reading on Twitter, along with screenshots of their eBook highlights etc, basically live-tweeting their reactions. I tried to do this last year with my copy of Chain of Gold, just taking pictures of my tagged quotes and adding my thoughts. It was fun, but this time when I read Chain of Iron, I might try making a reading vlog for BookTok or some other type of content (Let me know if you have anything you’d like to see!)

So it seems like my annotation style varies from book to book depending on the story, copy, and format. I know for myself, sticky notes are definitely here to stay, though I’d like to start writing and personalizing more of my own copies of books!

Please let me know what ways you annotate your books! Is there a way you think is the best? I’d love to hear them and get further ideas.

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