The Reading Rush Wrap-Up 2020


The Reading Rush is officially over for another year and yikes, that was some experience. I won't delve into all the problems I had with how the creators/hosts of this readathon failed their audience and the black community by disrespecting their book club pick as it isn't my voice that ought to be heard, but I will say that I read Such A Fun Age by Kiley Reid earlier this year and loved it. It's a book that matters, especially during this eye-opening period of history. Read it, and then discuss it. Never use black authors and their stories for clicks; a sentence that should never be needed to say. I won't be participating in this readathon again. These are the books I read over the past week:

The Catcher in the Rye
by J.D. Salinger
Holden Caulfield is a sixteen-year-old juvenile boy who has just got kicked out of his boarding school. There begins a few nights of  pure insanity for the youngster. This is arguably a modern classic that divides most readers - people either love it or hate it. I'm so disappointed to say that I sit right on the fence. I didn't hate this book like some do, but I also didn't really enjoy it. It was 'meh'. I found the writing compelling and it definitely gave me The Perks of Being a Wallflower vibes, but the overall story and characters left me feeling cold. 

We Have Always Lived in the Castle
by Shirley Jackson
Gothic books are something I always enjoy, but I seem to forget to pick anything up in this genre. So I was excited to bump this up my TBR for this prompt. I definitely enjoyed this book more The Haunting On Hill House, I felt like the overall story was less confusing and the characters were all more likable. I did this via audiobook after someone on Bookstagram recommended it, and I'm so glad I did. The narrator really empathized the youth of Mary Katherine Blackwood, which I may of forgotten if it wasn't for the voice actor. I didn't think this story read as a gothic thriller however, it was much more of a creepy  contemporary so I'm glad I didn't put it aside for this years Spookathon. If you don't know, this is a story of a young girl and her sister, Constance, who have been shunned by their community after their entire family were murdered. 

A Simple Favor 
by Darcy Bell
A mommy blogger starts blogging about her friend who vanished. Which raises the question of every domestic thriller ever - did the husband do it? I watched the movie adaption of this last year and really enjoyed the insanity of it all. It was so cliche in the best way. The book however fell a little short. It was the epitome of a 3 star thriller that you read and inevitably forget. I definitely think that I might've given this a 2 star rating if I hadn't watched the movie first, as it helped me envision Anna Kendrick and Blake Lively as the duel protagonist of this book which made both characters instantly more likable.

by Noelle Stevenson 
This is a graphic novel about a girl who becomes the sidekick to a villain. Adorable! I never thought I'd laugh so much when reading a graphic novel, but here we are. The small amount of characters in this story really amplified my interest overall, it helped me connect to each main character which I've never really experienced before when not reading a traditional novel. The artwork was fun but descriptive, just a great well rounded book. Would 110% recommend.

The Girl Who Fell from the Sky
by Heidi W. Durrow
After the death of her mother and siblings, a mixed girl moves in with her black Grandmother which leads to an identity crisis when it comes to race. This book left me feeling incredibly torn. Every time I started to enjoy the story, the author would write such a questionable sentence that I couldn't in good conscience give this a higher rating than 2 stars. The author used so many racist slurs to describe the black characters, which is disheartening but also conflicting as I'm unsure whether I ought to take offence as a white woman (especially as the author herself is mixed). 

Between Shades of Gray
by Ruta Sepetys
This is about a young Lithuanian girl and her family who are deported by Stalin's Russians to a work camp in Siberia during WWII. I'd been wanting to pick this YA novel up for a few years now as it's a side of the war that we don't often hear about, and for that alone this was a fascinating novel. However, I wasn't overly fond of Ruta Sepetys writing (a problem I also had with Salt to the Sea), as it felt rather juvenile in comparison to my usual historical fiction. On one hand, duh, this is YA and books such as The Alice Network are adult fiction. But then I think of The Boy In The Striped Pajamas and feel a little more validated in my criticism. Meh.

The Mothers
by Brit Bennett 
Here we have a beautiful book coming to save the entire reading rush for me. This debut novel is about a seventeen-year-old girl who decides to abort a child. The father, a 21-year-old man who works at a local seafood restaurant, asks his parents - a pastor and his wife - for the money for the surgery. There starts a slow falling domino effect that spreads throughout the lives of the people involved. I didn't know what to expect from this book as I'd heard a lot about the authors newest book The Vanishing Half, but nothing really about this. Halfway through the book I already knew I was going to give it 5 stars, a strong statement but yes. This was the most perfect mix of contemporary, lyrical writing, character development, and brought about a great discussion on race and abortion without ever feeling preachy. If this has ever been on your TBR, I urge you to boost it higher. It's a wonderful book. 

Have you read Such A Fun Age? How did you like it?

My Lovely Wife In The Psych Ward by Mark Lukach | Book Review


My Lovely Wife in The Psych Ward is a heartbreaking memoir about a marriage that survived an illness that threatened to break it apart. Giulia and Mark were your average couple until they weren't. Before Giulia took ill, they were leading an average day-to-day life. Work was good, they had an apartment in San Francisco, a lovable dog, and enough savings to warrant thinking about starting a family. But a few sleepless nights, manic ramblings, and a mental breakdown later led to Giulia being committed to a psych ward for 14 days. From there Mark writes about the hurdles the couple faced, the life changes that had to be made for Giulia's safety, and the inner worries of someone who's in love with a mentally ill woman. And most importantly, how all of that led to her being committed for the second time.

I knew this memoir was going to break my heart, but I didn't expect how much of an impact it was going to make. This is a story about depression, but also about the power of love. How to love through the darkest of dark times, and how to do all of that without compromising yourself. Mark's voice is powerful throughout this book. 

What I really appreciated from this memoir was the no-filter way Lukach wrote about mental health. There were times when Giulia's depression made her act out in truly ugly ways - the way of most mental illnesses. Being sick can bring out the monsters inside of us that are built from months of pent up frustration at no longer knowing who we are and at feeling misunderstood by those who we thought loved us. Depression makes us question ourselves in ways that seem impossible once you look back on it with a cloudless vision. Mark doesn't sugarcoat anything, and instead of his writing making Giulia unlikable, it makes her feel human. I wanted to both shake her past self while pulling her into an embrace of safety. This book never tried to be fiction, it never tried to find beauty in the sadness, it was raw and continued to be so until the very last line.

This entire book is the most authentic voice of depression I've read. If you've ever struggled with any form of mental health, I urge you to pick this up. I guarantee you'll find at least one paragraph that speaks to your heart. 

The Reading Rush TBR 2020


It's time for The Reading Rush! If you don't know, this is a beloved readathon run by Ariel and Raeleen. It runs from July 20th to July 26th. Read their info page if you want to know more. The added touches to this readathon really makes it fun to participate in. There's a site, merch, and little challenges throughout the week that makes it really easy to interact with. I'm super late in uploading this post (and writing it), but my TBR kept changing. I'm hoping to read a book for all 7 prompts, because I'm a readathon overachiever, but some books can work for multiple prompts so I'm efficiently covering my butt. Whoop. Without further ado, let's get on with the prompts and my (kinda) official TBR.

1/ Read a book with a cover that matches the colour of your birth stone.
2/ Read a book that starts with the word “The”.
3/ Read a book that inspired a movie you’ve already seen.
4/ Read the first book you touch.
5/ Read a book completely outside of your house (or about the outdoors/by a window).
6/ Read a book in a genre that you’ve always wanted to read more of.
7/ Read a book that takes place on a different continent than where you live.

To be honest, I'm a little disappointed by the prompts as they aren't as challenging as I'd like them to be. But I get that it's more accessible this way, especially as some people's libraries are still closed due to Covid. I'm personally trying to only read books that are on my physical TBR.

PROMPT: "Read a book with a cover that matches the colour of your birth stone."
BOOK: Neisi Daughter by Monica Sone
I was born in June so my birthstones are Alexandrite and Pearl. I went with pearl as it's easier to find something that's.. well.. pearly. I have three choices for this prompt. Nesei Daughter by Monica Stone, Hunger by Roxanne Gay, and Unfiltered by Lily Collins. I'm obviously leaning more towards Neisi Daughter, but it's always good to have some backups! Nesei Daughter is a non-fiction about the experience of growing up Japanese American on Seattle's waterfront in the 1930s and to be subjected to "relocation" during World War II. This was written by a family member on my husband's side, so it makes it all the more interesting to me. 

PROMPT: "Read a book that starts with the word "the"
BOOK: The Catcher In The Rye by J. D. Salinger 
Am I psychotic for putting a modern classic that seems incredibly dense on my TBR for a readathon? Yup. Yay for insanity. I know I'm either going to love or hate this coming-of-age story with an apparent pompous main character. But I included it in my most recent '5 Star Book Predictions' so.. I'm hopeful?

PROMPT: "Read a book that inspired a movie you've already seen"
BOOK: A Simple Favor by Darcey Bell
A lot of people seem to be having trouble with this prompt but for me it was easy. I watched this movie starring Anna Kendrick and Blake Lively a while ago and ever since the book has sat on my TBR shelf gathering dust. I enjoyed the movie for what it was, but I've since heard that the book is rather different in tone - more thriller, less humor. 

PROMPT: "Read the first book you touch"
BOOK: The Girl Who Fell from the Sky by Heidi W. Durrow
I chose to do this prompt by picking out 5 books on my TBR, and having my husband mix them up so I didn't know which I'd touch first. I landed on The Girl Who Fell from the Sky, which was a random book I picked up at a thrift store one day. It's about a biracial girl who is thrust into a black community after her parents both die and she's sent off to live with her grandmother. Since owning it, I've seen it on a multitude of lists of 'books you have to read' or 'own-voices books that matter'. I'm excited to read this.

PROMPT: "Read a book outside"
BOOK: Nimona by Noelle Stevenson
We're lucky enough to have a spacious garden, so I'm planning to read the entirety of Nimona sitting outside. I have no idea what is about other than it being middlegrade and that it's been loved by many booktubers. Quick to read, but hopefully entertaining!

PROMPT: "Read a book from a genre that you've always wanted to read more from"
BOOK: We Have Always Lived In The Castle by Shirley Jackson
Gothic horror is a genre that I've dipped my toes into, but never fully immersed myself with. I stupidly keep putting books like these off for the winter months/Spookathon, but they're really starting to pile up so I'm think I'm good. Plus Summer always seems to bring out my desire to read more horror/thriller. Just me? 

PROMPT: "Read a book that takes place on a different continent than you"
BOOK: Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata
I didn't want to breeze past this prompt by reading something set in Europe as that's a good portion of my bookcase, and I'm making an effort to read more diversely. So I'm going to Japan for my book, and reading the recently raved about book Convenience Store Woman. I have this on hold at my library, so I'll hopefully be picking it up sometime in the week. (Yeah, I know I said that I was only reading books I own.. but....) If for some reason I don't get my hands on this, I'll be reading Silence by Endo Shusaku, hence the photo.

So, there we have an overly ambitious TBR. My secret goal is to read 10 books, but if I put that into the universe it'll never happen. So let's pretend I didn't say that. Are you participating in The Reading Rush? What book are you most excited to read? And what's your least read genre? 

Keep safe,

Recent Reads #1


Change is coming! Monthly wrap-ups are fun, but when you average a good 10-15 books a month, it can be incredibly overwhelming to write. So I'm switching it up! Instead of the usual wrap-up, I'm going to do a blog post discussing all my recent reads every time I finish 5-7 books (it'll depend on whether I have anything substantial to say about certain books). I don't know how often there'll be a new post as my reading habits can change depending on the month, but I imagine there'll be a new post every 2 weeks. I'm still debating whether or not to do a version of a wrap-up still, but more focused on discussing my favourite reads of the month, anything that disappointed me, and stats. We all love some stats! If that sounds interesting to you, let me know! So without further ado, let's discuss my latest reads!

Spirit Bound
by Richelle Mead
I've been rereading the Vampire Academy series for over a month now, and it's such a blast. I've spoken before about my love for this series, but I was a little hesitant to give it a reread in case it wasn't as enjoyable as I remembered. A lot of Twilight fans have very likely read the first book in this paranormal series during the era of House Of Night, Fallen, Hush, Hush, and The Vampire Diaries. But I doubt that many continued as the series really does take a huge turn for the better. I adore Rose as a protagonist, especially as she was one of the first true kickass heroines 11-year-old Anne read in a YA series. Is it a sometimes silly series without depth? Yeah, but it's fun. Spirit Bound is the fourth installment in the series, and though it's my least favourite, I'm excited to pick up the next and final book. I'm still debating whether I want to read the spin-off series Bloodlines.

Girl, Woman, Other
by Bernardine Evaristo
This is an interwoven story of twelve voices, each voice being a woman. All of the characters lead vastly different lives, whether that's because of their upbringing or just the era that they lived through. We read about daughters, their mothers, and a different woman all together who's story is somehow woven into the others. What I found particularly striking about this novel was Evaristo's ability to create such an array of unique women, without it ever feeling repetitive. I could clearly differentiate each character. As with any book that is essentially a collection of stories, you enjoy some sections more than others. For that reason I gave Girl, Woman, Other a 4+1/2 star rating. It was beautifully written, and surprisingly quick to go through despite it's hefty length. If it's been even remotely on your radar, I strongly recommend it. 

A Closed and Common Orbit (Wayfarers #2)
by Becky Chambers
Picking up right where The Long Way To A Small Angry Planet left off, we follow two characters who have ventured off for an adventure of their own. The synopsis for this is a huge spoiler for the end of book one, so be aware of that if you look this one up! I was excited to pick this up, as I was excited to see what Chambers could do with a more condensed character list. Book one had so many characters - hell, an entire crew - which I did find overwhelming at times. I'm always going magnate more to character driven books, but especially when a novel focuses more on specific characters. I gave TLWTASAP (Bloody hell) a 5 star rating, and yet I much preferred A Closed and Common Orbit. So.. you can pretty much gather how great of a writer Chambers is. This book had such diversity and representation, yet never felt preachy or try-hard. It was a beautiful story that touched my heart. My only quim with it overall was that I felt the ending was rushed. It could've blossomed with an extra 50 pages. 

The Poet X
by Elizabeth Acevedo
Told through verse, this is about a young girl in Harlem who discovers slam poetry as a way to understand her mother’s religion and her own relationship to the world. Last month I read Clap When You Land and instantly ordered The Poet X from my library. I didn't enjoy Acevedo's's debut quite as much as her new release, but it was still absolutely beautiful writing. Her books seem to be an entire experience that I can't help but fall head over heels for. I'm already planning on reading With The Fire On High soon. 

Pet Sematery
by Stephen King
When the Creeds move into a beautiful old house in rural Maine (of course), it all seems too good to be true: physician father, beautiful wife, charming little daughter, adorable infant son—and now an idyllic home. But the nearby woods hide a blood-chilling truth—more terrifying than death itself—and hideously more powerful. I have a rocky relationship with King's books, but I was hopeful when picking up this known favourite, as so many people have said that it's his one truly creepy book. I get it, okay, the first 1/3 was indeed creepy. But god, did it drag from there. In classic Stephen King style, this could've been 100 pages less and would've definitely gained from it. 

I'll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman's Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer
by Michelle McNamara
True Crime is a genre that I've been interested in for about a year now, but never knew where to start when it came to books. This was available via audiobook at my library, so I randomly started it one night. Yeah, I didn't get much sleep that night. This book revolved around the now caught Golden State Killer and a bloggers obsession to find him. Michelle McNamara sadly passed away before this book got published, which only adds to the overall intensity of the book. I'm giving this a 3 star rating, as though I did really enjoy the first half, I got a little bored during the 2012 sections. I felt as though the book could've been a little 'more to the point'. But nevertheless, if you're interested in dipping your toes into this genre, I think this is a great place to start. It definitely spiked my interest. 

What are you currently reading?

5 Star Book Predictions : Part II


Time for another guessing game! Last year I did a 5 Star Book Predictions post and have since read them all and even wrote all about my eventual ratings in my Prediction Update post. Go me. I figured it was worthwhile to do a part 2. I don't know about you but I have piles of books on my TBR that I have a gut feeling about, I feel like I will give them a whooping 5 star rating but yet I continuously chose to pick up something else. Is it the fear of the book letting me down? Or am I just lazy? Probably both! Like last time, I'm going to categorise each pick. Because I like rules. Let's get onto my second batch of predictions...

The Modern Classic: 
Catcher In The Rye
by J. D. Salinger
A 'banned' classic that has been said to be the The Perks Of Being A Wallflower of it's time. This is a sceptical but honest prediction. My husband loathed this book, like, one of his most hated books of all time, and each review I see seems to be either glowing or bursting with annoyance. I can look past unlikable characters, enjoy a book centred around mental health, and am a sucker for a tale of young adolescence. I really hope I like this. 
Side-note: Since writing this blog post, I've read J.D. Salinger's other novel Franny and Zooey and absolutely hated it. Oh, dear. Hope for me.

The Well-Loved Author:
After I Do
by Taylor Jenkins Reid
I have absolutely no idea what this is about and I'm refusing to look it up as I like going into Taylor Jenkins Reid's book completely blind. I'm sorry. Click HERE to venture to the Goodreads page if you want to know it's synopsis. From the title I'm guessing it's about a marriage..? All I know and all I need to know is that it's written by one of my favourite authors (she's currently tied for my favourite author with Fredrik Backman). This is the last backlist TJR book I have yet to read, so it's high on my TBR.

The Non-Fiction:
The Unabridged Journals Of Sylvia Plath
by Sylvia Plath
This terrifies me. If I put it on this list then I have to read it within the next few months. My husband bought this for me for Christmas as I've been going on and on about how much I want to read it since the literal age of 14. But I'm so scared about whether or not I'm going to like it after I've built it up so highly in my mind. Is this what it's like to be a modern day Star Wars fan? Repeat with me: I will not be daunted by big books, I will not be daunted by big books...

The Recommended:
Bringing Down The Duke
by Evie Dunmore
This book has been making the rounds through Booktube and though it's had varying reviews, I'm already sold. A historical fiction with smutty goodness and a smartass female protagonist? Yes, all the yes. From what I can remember, this is about one of the first females to earn a place in Oxford, only her placement comes with the price of having to sway a notoriously strong-willed Duke into backing the slowly raising female's suffrage movement. In this I'm hoping for envious gowns, witty banter, female friendship, and one brooding Duke. I'm all in.

*The Yet-To-Be-Released:
Out Of Love
by Hazel Hayes
I've seen this marketed as a love story told in reverse, with the backdrop of a bittersweet break-up. Sounds utterly painful, right? Just my thing. Despite this being Hazel's debut novel, I'm already familiar with her writing style and a large chunk of my heart is already built up of love for it. So I'm pretty confident putting Out Of Love on this list. As a bonus, it's already been compared to Normal People by Sally Rooney and One Day by David Nichollas, both of which I loved. Everything is leading to a 5 star rating, and I've already pre-ordered. Something I never do. One might say I'm overly confident.

The Classic:
Anne Of Green Gables
by L. M. Montgomery
Over the years I've read a few version of this children's classic. Some were condensed versions of the entire series and others were entirely rewritten (looking at you, mother) but I don't think I've ever read the first original volume. I got gifted this gorgeous set by my husband last year and I want to make my way through all four books (I only have this and A Little Princess left), so what better time to finally fall into Anne's world? I've yet to read a female orientated children's classic that I haven't given 5 stars, so this will hopefully be a correct prediction.

So, there we have it. Hopefully I'll check in near the end of Summer with my eventual ratings and a whole new batch of predictions. What book on your TBR are you predicting you'll give 5 stars? 

*Since writing this post, I've recieved and read Out Of Love. Spoiler: I gave it 5 stars! Yay! Off to a great start, people!

Top 10 Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist Songs


Given our current quarantine situation, I've been finding myself watching Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist on a loop. If Jane Levy's face isn't taking up my screen, then I'm usually found listening to the many wonderful covers from the show on Spotify. I adore this soundtrack. Are the covers better than the originals? No - well, I could make a case for Happier but let's get to that later - yet each cover sung by the actors fills your heart. If you haven't been keeping up to date with me online and Youtube didn't bombard you with the first episode of this wonderful original series masked as an ad, then you're life is Zoeyless and I'm sorry. This NBC show is about a tech girl named Zoey, who suddenly gets the ability to hear/view people's inner emotions in the way of songs. They perform their desires, happiness, sadness, or confessions by covering songs by the likes of The Beatles, Whitney Huston, No Doubt, P!nk, and so on.. If you want to watch a show that makes you feel unfairly untalented, this is it. Basically. It stars Jane Levy as our main star, followed by Skylar Austin and Alex Newell as her friends, Peter Gallagher and Mary Steenburgen as Zoey's parents, and Lauren Graham (Lorelai FREAKING Gilmore!) stars so brightly as Zoey's girlboss Joan that she can't not be one of the best things about the show. The cast is diverse, wonderfully talented, and as a group make up a great mix of known actors and people beginning to blossom in their work (such as John Clarence Stewart, Michael Thomas Grant, Kapil Talwalkar, and Stephanie Styles). But what are my most played 10 songs from the entire season? Let's find out together.

10) Got The Music In Me
sung by Jane Levy
The opening song of episode 2 'Zoey's Extraordinary Boss' was our first taste of Jane Levy's singing ability, and dayum, she rocked it. Since seeing this episode this song may or may not of been played repeatedly by me each day to help elevate my mood in these crappy times. The beat, the lyrics, the cheesiness... absolutely perfect. This has also been the only scene thus far to have all of the characters together (spoiler: it's a dream sequence, but.. it counts. Right?)

9) Wrecking Ball
sung by Lauren Graham 
Lauren Graham's character Joan had great growth throughout the show, despite the lack of screen time (I need more Gilmore Joan in my life!). Wrecking Ball was by far her standout solo, despite how little we saw of it on the show. Not only was this when she was vocally strongest (not counting American Pie), but it brought a whole new meaning to the pop classic.

8) I Wanna Dance With Somebody
sung by Stephanie Styles
Autumn was an underdog of a character throughout the first season of this show. I adored both her character and her voice, boy, her voice. This was our first song by her and it is honestly perfection. 'I Wanna Dance With Somebody" is one of the first performances I think of when reminiscing about this series. It conveyed such a sense of loneliness. The vocals, dancing, and Mo's backtrack of utter disbelief makes for the 8th spot on this list. 

7) Perfect
sung by Mary Steenburgen and Peter Gallagher
Mitch and Maggie's last performance together of the season. Who didn't shed a tear? Ed Sheeran's song is the most perfect fit for this dance scene. It was very reminiscent of their earlier relationship. The lyrics were a perfect example of how when in tremendous love the other can change to such an extent but it won't shatter our love for them. I'm unashamed to admit that I cried for a solid 15 minutes. I also think that was Mary Steenburgen's strongest vocal performance. 

6) I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)
sung by Max (Skylar Austin)
Prior to this gem of a song, Skyler Austin's character Max had sung a few suggestive songs to Zoey, but I'd argue that this was the first true love song. I Think I Love You and Sucker were flirty, but this showed just how true Max's feelings are. (am I taking this show quite seriously? yes.) If the Pitch Perfect trilogy taught us anything it's that Skylar Austin sings absolutely everything perfectly.

5) Mad World
sung by John Clarence Stewart
I adore the original of this song so it's no real surprise that this cover showed up on this list. However, for a song from the very first episode of the show, it stuck with me. I feel like this was a glimpse into what the show wanted to be. It broke my heart and I hadn't yet felt so seen in a TV show - let alone a pilot. 

4) How Do I Live
sung by Jane Levy
Episode 8 'Zoey's Extraordinary Glitch' broke my heart into a billion pieces. Jane Levy's overall performance was one of the best I've seen of any actor in a single episode. She portrayed humor, heartbreak, love, and lust all while keeping Zoey's authentic characteristics. The sound of silence in this episode was played beautifully, which you'll know what I mean if you have seen it. The last song of the episode 'How Do I Live' sung by, of course, Jane Levy seemed to come out of nowhere. Having not been entirely familiar with Levy's range, this was such an impact scene and the song was the perfect choice. She sung the entirety of the song with the emotions that flickered across her expression, a no easy feat, and made me sob into my drink.

3) The Great Pretender
sung by Alex Newell 
Mo is quite obviously a tremendous singer, but this was the highlight of his vocal ability to me. It portrayed such an intense sadness that not many actors could even hope to do. The song for the episode was a perfect choice. I think what I love most about it is that it's one of the only songs of the season that's a character singing to themselves. It's beautiful. Mo is beautiful. We all need him as a friend. 

2) Miss American Pie
by the entire cast
This was the final song of the show and boy, did it put the audience through the ringer. Upon first glance, this song seems out of place for such a sad scene but after a look at the lyrics, it really is a devastating song. That last line broke me into a billion pieces and I'm wrecked forever.

1) Happier
sung by John Clarence Stewart and India de Beaufort
This may be a bit of an obscure winner but I stand by it. This song was the most perfect fit of all songs chosen for the first season. It was such an intimate look at what we all assume to be Simon and Jessica's relationship. The dance scene was beautiful, the singing was lovely, and the lyrics broke my heart. This song is 100% going to be at the top of my 'songs of 2020' list on Spotify. 

Since writing this, the show has officially been renewed for a second season. So if you hear a constant high pitch scream, it's me. Have you watched this show? Are you interested in it? Let me know! I need some fellow viewers in my life. Screw Team Edward or Team Jacob, Max and Simon are the new ultimate rivals. 

I Messed Up Book Tag


We all love a good book tag, eh? I can't remember who I saw do this on Booktube but I really enjoyed the questions and wanted to do it myself! Full credit goes to the creator, and if you'd like to do this, consider yourself tagged! Let's get on with the questions... 


1. A character appearance that you misread and imaged differently. 
After watching so many Vampire Academy dreamcast videos on Youtube in my youth (are those still a thing?) I have to go with Dimitri from Vampire Academy. I was entirely imagining Ben Barnes's face on Roman Reigns body. I did really like in the role, but yeah, I was imagining something completely different. The same goes for Beth in Little Women. Probably because of the name, but I was imagining a younger Emily Kinney in the role.

2. A character name that you've been pronouncing wrong. 
Carlisle from Twilight. When I read the entire series I was pronouncing it Carl-is-le, not Carl-ile. Basically, the 's' is silence which teenage me did not imagine. Entire brain explosion when I watched the movies and realized how wrong I was the entire time. 

3. An overused trope that is your guilty pleasure.
A well-done love triangle. I know it's overdone and a little try hard at this point, but there's just something about a classic love triangle that will peak my interest. Especially when you have the goodie-good-guy and the smart mouthed underdog - bonus points if the underdog has a fighting chance and it isn't so clearly the loser throughout the entire book. Think less Jacob Black and more Adrian Ivashkov.

4. A cliché character type that you like better on screen rather than read about.
The epic bitch. Give me Blair Waldorf, Petra Solano, Naomi Clark, and Brooke Davis every day of the week but in book form? No, thanks. I don't know why the bitch character just doesn't work for me in written format, but it doesn't. I think my brain goes too 'worst case scenario' and I instantly want to vanquish the character. That said, if we're just talking book adaptions, I think the actor or actress can play a huge part in whether or not you like the character. Seen as we seem to be on a vague Twilight theme here, let's use Jessica as an example. I think Anna Kendrick being cast to play such a dislikable character made Jessica seem way more likable. Kendrick has a way of delivering such bitchy lines with an underlining of sarcasm that speaks to my soul. 

5. A word/phrase that you learnt because of it's use in a book.
I can't think of an answer for this, so instead I'm going to say the term 'Meet Cute' which I learnt from Booktube. That counts.. right? Since I learnt about it, I've seen it literally everywhere. Always the same, right? 

6. Have you ever not read or completed a required reading book for school?
Nope! I left school when I was 10-years-old to be home schooled which mostly consisted of being my own teacher. Weirdly, I didn't choose to pick up the classics that I ought to of read in school. In my twenties I've been working on rectifying that.

7. Have you ever (or wanted to) skipped a chapter from the point of view of a character that you weren’t interested in?
Yes, very likely. What book? Good question. Nothing comes instantly to mind, but as an overall answer, I'd say romance novels that have a split narrative. I get why it's now a common thing to find in books such as The Kiss Quotient, The Unhoneymooners, and Get A Life, Chloe Brown, as it helps built up both characters. But it seems to be a trait of the genre to have some unnecessary conflict near the end of the book to 'spice things up', I guess? I find it more frustrating when we're switching narratives and both are being completely idiotic or purposely not communicating. I feel as though if we were just reading from the POV of one character, it'd help keep the book interesting as we wouldn't necessarily know what the miscommunication is actually about. I dunno. 

8. Have you ever cancelled social plans to read a book?
Not that I can think of, but me and my husband have most definitely strayed from an original plan for the day to read (usually the adulting type of plan, such as grocery shopping or going outside to feel alive). We've also spent so long reading that we miss dinner, so are "forced" to get Taco Bell at a stupid hour. Having a partner who reads is great, but darn, it can be dangerous. 

There we have. Remember if you're interested in doing this tag, consider yourself tagged! And be sure to send me a link as I'd love to read your answers.

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