Top 5 Favorite Bookish Maps

Funnily enough, almost all of my favorite books have maps in them. (but this post won’t be about them). These aren’t listed by a specific order, they’re all equally my favorites (it’s be a different story if we were talking about the stories behind each map). But anyway, let’s get to it! 


The Grishaverse Map, from the Grisha Trilogy and Six of Crows Duology by Leigh Bardugo

(*So here’s a fun fact, I actually a large version of this back (in different colors though) that came with the box set of special editions I bought back in January). 


Prythian from A Court of Thorns and Roses series by Sarah J. Maas


Westeros and The Seven Kingdoms from A Song of Ice and Fire series by George R. R. Martin


Middle Earth from The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings trilogy by J.R.R.Tolkien

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Weekly Wrap Up: What I’m Reading, What I Read & Next Read [Dec 9]

What I Read: 

I finished reading The Essex Serpent this week. I understand why so many people love it, but it just wasn’t it for me. I loved the characters, the plot but the writing was confusing, overly complicated and just dull. 

I gave it 3 stars. 

I’ve also started a new tv series this week: The Truth About the Harry Quebert Affair. It’s really interesting, so much so that I went and picked up the book from the library. (I read it in two sittings and it’s about 685 pages long). I gave it 4 stars. 

It was a bit dull at first because I was reading things I had already learned from watching the first two episodes of the tv series, but as soon as there were new things, I loved it.


August 30, 1975: the day fifteen-year-old Nola Kellergan is glimpsed fleeing through the woods, never to be heard from again. The day Somerset, New Hampshire, lost its innocence. 

Thirty-three years later, Marcus Goldman, a successful young novelist, visits Somerset to see his mentor, Harry Quebert, one of the country’s most respected writers, and to find a cure for his writer’s block as his publisher’s deadline looms. But Marcus’s plans are violently upended when Harry is suddenly and sensationally implicated in the cold-case murder of Nola Kellergan–whom, he admits, he had an affair with. As the national media convicts Harry, Marcus launches his own investigation, following a trail of clues through his mentor’s books, the backwoods and isolated beaches of New Hampshire, and the hidden history of Somerset’s citizens and the man they hold most dear. To save Harry, his own writing career, and eventually even himself, Marcus must answer three questions, all of which are mysteriously connected: Who killed Nola Kellergan? What happened one misty morning in Somerset in the summer of 1975? And how do you write a book to save someone’s life?

Personally, I didn’t agree at all with the reviews I read. There were some surprisingly awful reviews about this book on Goodreads. Apparently, most people found it pretty horrible, arrogant, snobbish and almost satirical (and even the worst thing they’ve ever read). 
The writing was really heavily criticized which makes me think perhaps the translations might cause or attenuate that. (I read the Portuguese translations of this French novel, by the way, if that wasn’t already obvious from the pictures).

What I’m Reading: 

I’m not currently reading anything at the moment. I finished the Harry Quebert Affair book on Friday and I spent yesterday with some of my relatives who came to visit Lisbon. (We went to a museum and saw the Christmas lights and it was just super fun). 

Next Read:  

 I’m thinking of reading If We Were Villains, Motherhood and The Immortalists this week (and possibly also The Great Gatsby since I was gifted a lovely penguin classics edition). 

That’s it for my first week of December. I have a lot planned for this week but it’ll be mostly relaxing and having fun since it’s the best month of the year for that.  

December TBR: or, one last effort to bring down that unread pile of books

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(I took these pictures when Fahrenheit 451 was still in my December TBR)

One of my new year’s goals for 2018 was to read more of the books I already owned and though I did follow that a little, I read a lot more than those that didn’t quite fit the criteria. So, in one last effort to bring down that metaphorical or physical unread tbr pile,  I’m reading 8 books I bought this month. 

I think I might try to do some weekly wrap-ups and updates and there’s a bunch of posts ideas I had in November that I’ll definitely start writing for December and beyond.

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Motherhood by Sheila Heti: About motherhood, women and society’s expectations of them. I was instantly in love with the premise.

If We Were Villains by M. L. Rio: Essentially a murder-mystery among actors playing a Shakespeare play. Do I need to say more? (It totally gives me The Secret History vibes).  

The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin: It’s the late 60’s in America and there’s a group of friends who learn about the day of their death from a traveling psychic. It sounds kind of dark and definitely interesting!

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The Bone Season by Samantha Shanon: I can’t quite explain it. I’ve heard such great things about this series that when I found it really cheap on Book Depository I bought all three. 

The Mime Order by Samantha Shanon

The Song Rising by Samantha Shanon

Dark Secrets by Michael Hjorth and Hans Rosenfeldt: I’m not going to lie, this one was a gift I chose solely because of its beautiful cover. It’s a Swedish murder mystery. I hope I like it. 

The Essex Serpent by Sarah Perry: Set in the 19th century, a (lady) scientist sets out to prove the existence of the Essex Serpent. So, it seems pretty interesting and the cover is gorgeous! (yes, it’s missing from the pictures since it was a late addition to my tbr)

Honestly, I know I’m being ambitious in setting an 8 book tbr pile, but I’ve surprised and surpassed myself this year before on many occasions. Plus, if these books are as interesting as I think they are then it should be no trouble at all!

November Wrap Up: just being happy, moving to Santa Cruz & some short reviews

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I tried to feel less anxious this month and enjoy my life and you know what, I did it! I felt good, I felt happy. Sure, I had some darker moments, but who doesn’t? Life isn’t sunshine and daisies, everyone knows that. Still, November was a great month. 

And I finally moved! I’m now living in Santa Cruz, Portugal! (More specifically, I’m living in a three-bedroom house with a backyard that makes my 11-year-old doggo happy –  that is just a 15-min walk away from the beach). 

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Personally, I strongly believe that moving here is part of the reason why I feel less anxious and happier. The ocean has always been a huge part of my life, I’ve always felt really connected to it (does this sound weird). I just feel really grateful to be able to see it whenever I want, hear it, smell it. It’s just the most amazing thing. 

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I moved just a little over a week ago, and it was a week without any internet or TV, we still don’t have all our stuff here, and it’s still mostly a mess but it’s slowly becoming a home.

(I’ve been really into cooking and baking in the last few days. I’m eating healthy and I’m going to bake so many (healthy) muffins in December like you won’t believe it.)

 

What I Read: 

  1. Tales From The Shadowhunter Academy by Cassandra Clare, Sarah Rees Brenan, Maureen Johnson, and Robin Wasserman – 4 stars
  2. Monstress vol. 3: Haven by Marjorie Lu and Sana Takeda – 4 stars
  3. Saga vol. 1 by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples – 3.5 stars
  4. Saga vol. 2 by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples – 3.5 stars
  5. Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas – 5 stars [reread]
  6. Kingdom of Ashes by Sarah J. Maas  – 5 stars
  7. Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley – 4 stars
  8. Aerie by Maria Dahvana Headley – 3.5 stars
  9. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling – 4 stars
  10. Spice and Wolf Light Novel Vol. 8: The Town of Strife I by Isuna Hasekura – 3.5 stars
  11. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury – 4 stars

Some Reviews:

Tales From the Shadowhunter Academy by Cassandra Clare, Sarah Rees Brenan, Maureen Johnson, and Robin Wasserman: Review

Monstress Vol. 3 Haven by Marjorie Lu and Sana Takeda: Review Coming Soon

Saga Vols. 1 & 2 by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples: Although I definitely liked Saga, I’m not sure I’ll be continuing with this series. It’s really fun, super unique and always unpredictable – but it just didn’t hook me the same way Monstress did, for instance. Still, who knows, I might read some more at one point. 

Kingdom of Ashes by Sarah J. Maas: There won’t be a review because I just can’t write a review that encompasses the 980-page journey that is Kingdom of Ashes. Somehow I managed to do so for A Court of Wings and Ruin, perhaps because I knew it was not the end. (Certainly, there will be lots of fanfiction written about all of these characters but it’s the final book and I’m just…..)An emotional rollercoaster, that’s what KOA was. I was constantly crying, worried and fearing for all the characters. I loved it!

Spice and Wolf Light Novel Vol. 8: The Town of Strife I by Isuna Hasekura: I’ve always found that the problem with light novels and other sorts of continuous publications that are spaced out is that the authors feel a need to perpetually recap a large number of facts that we all already know. Recapping to a certain point is acceptable and even welcome at times but some of it is just outright annoying. This is volume 8, I know that Holo was worshipped as a harvest goddess and that she was called the Wisewolf. There’s no need to repeat that at this point. 

Anyway, the beginning was a bit boring but it quickly became pretty intriguing and I’m very interested in what will happen next. Still, the reason why I didn’t rate this higher is mainly that I was often confused throughout this book not only because of all the usual monetary/business stuff but also because of something silly, such the lack of dialogue tags. I often couldn’t tell who was speaking because apparently everyone in this volume is a highly witty, wily merchant when they speak! 

So, Essentially, it was a bit dull at the beginning but it grew much more interesting and as always I will continue to read this series because I just love the two main characters to death. They’re the reason I started the ordeal of reading 17 light novels in the first place. They’re adorable and lovable and just frigging perfect.

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury: Review coming soon? 

So this month’s books are kind of all over the place? My TBR only included the Throne of Glass series books – mostly which I wanted to reread, though I only ended up rereading QoS – and Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy. Everything else I just kind of felt like reading…

Some of my blog posts,

What I Watched: 

I didn’t watch many movies this month and among those, only these four are worth mentioning. 

Firstly, Crazy Rich Asians was the best movie I’ve watched in a damn long time! It was happy, romantic, funny as hell and it was set in Singapore! I’m really looking forward to reading the book series. 

The Spy Who Dumped Me was also incredibly funny! (I’ve gotta say there have been some great comedy movies in 2018). It was pretty badass and heartwarming as well (Audrey and Morgan’s friendship is goals). I really liked it!

I’ve been meaning to watch The Shallows since it first came out. My main reason was that it was a shark movie and I love shark movies (even if most of the time they turn out to be pretty shitty). I wasn’t really sure about it because of Blake Lively. I love her, I really do, but I thought it was going to be one of those shitty shark movies that had hired a famous actress simply for the publicity…. but I was wrong! I really liked it! Blake Lively’s character was a strong, really intelligent young woman who made smart choices and actually survived (they normally don’t in shark movies let’s be honest) and the shark behaved in a believable way (mostly). I was pretty satisfied with it and I would watch it again. By the way, you should all check out Sia’s Bird Set Free song.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald was fun and I enjoyed, I really did, but it was also a disappointment. You can expect a lengthy review later this week/month.

When it comes to TV series, I watched more of the same, really. My Favorites were definitely Legacies, Grey’s Anatomy, and The Rookie. 

 

The only anime worth mentioning I’ve watched this month was One Piece. As always I’m in awe with Eiichiro Oda who after all this time still manages to make thoroughly entertaining, unique adventures for the Straw Hat Pirates (who could ever guess way back in the first few episodes that it would turn out like this).

My only complaints are, firstly, with Toei Animation’s female bodies and, secondly, the first five minutes of every episode and the endless recapping (its been 800 episodes, mates, we know about the New World and Gold Roger already, its time to stop). 

Everything else is still perfect!

In the episodes I’ve just watched, Luffy’s party has just reached Whole Cake Island – so I’m like 70 episodes behind. Whenever I catch up to One Piece, I usually stop watching for a while. This is just one of those shows I like to binge watch. Plus, it’s kind of annoying and anticlimactic when battles last like 4 or 5 episodes (or more) and you have to wait a week for a new episode. 

Anyway, I’m really looking forward to catching up to it in December. 

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So that was my November! I hope December goes just as well!

Legacies (2018): First Impressions

I’m currently writing this post after watching episode 3. This post will feature some minor spoilers for the first three episodes of Legacies, The Vampire Diaries, and The Originals. 

Legacies is CW’s latest The Vampire Diaries and The Originals spin-off. Years after the ending of the other shows, Alaric Saltzman is running the Salvatore Boarding School for  Young and Gifted for supernaturals (featuring descendants of characters of the two shows). It spoils TVD and TO, by the way, you might want to finish watching them first if you’ve already started them and actually like them. 

Although I didn’t expect much of it at first, it’s becoming the show I look forward to the most every week. 

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Episode 1: This Is The Part Where You Run was average though entertaining and intriguing enough to make me want to continue watching so I suppose it did its job. I don’t usually judge shows (or anything for that matter) for its first episodes (unless they’re that bad). 

The show mostly follows Hope Mikaelson, Josie and Lizzie Saltzman and human Landon Kirby (who keeps looking more and more like Hope’s love interest who is also a clichéed unwanted foster kid character who might be special after all). 

Episode 2: Some People Just Want To Watch The World Burn – Based on the first two episodes of Legacies, my first impressions were that I doubted Legacies wouldn’t be as good/exciting/engaging/you-name-it as TVD or TO. It seems to be milder, somehow, perhaps focusing a little more on Teen Drama than the other two and less on the supernatural, in general. Still, that wouldn’t stop me from watching it (not yet anyway). 

TVD and TO has mainly stuck to vampires, witches, and werewolves in terms of supernatural creatures. In fact, it led us all to believe those were the only supernaturals that existed. Legacies changed that – presumably in an effort to renew the interest in the characters (and maybe try to distract us from the fact that the creators/producers want to keep making money/ it’s simply a result from the other two shows’ popularity). It’s introducing us to a whole new world of possibility – and I have to say, it’s working for me. I’m interested (especially after episode 3).

Episode 3: We’re Being Punked Pedro is so far my the episode I’ve enjoyed the most. (Hopefully, the remaining 19 episodes will continue this trend and make this a great first season.) 

Now, I probably won’t review this show episode by episode because that’s not really what I like to do I suppose, though I’ll probably review the whole season when it ends.

But let’s just talk about Episode 4: Hope Is Not The Goal preview scenes for a sec. I like the growing drama, the escalating violence it’s showing, though the outcome seems a bit predictable (hopefully not). I like where this show is headed. 

 

 

 

November TBR:

For November I’m keeping my tbr list cozy, comfortable and amazing – I’m essentially keeping to my favorites.

 

  • Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas
  • Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas
  • Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas
  • Kingdom of Ashes by Sarah J. Maas

I’m currently waiting for my order of Kingdom of Ashes to arrive, a.k.a. the seventh and final installment in the Throne of Glass series. I finally caught up to it a year ago when I read almost all of the book and earlier this year I also read Tower of Glass. (I’ve actually already partially reread Heir of Fire this year so I might actually skip that one). 

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The hype around these books is no joke and at I can honestly say that to me, it is well-founded and that I couldn’t agree more. My favorites would be Heir of Fire and Empire of Storms.

I’m predicting KoA will arrive later this week or at the beginning of next week, at the time of which I’m expecting to be almost done rereading Queen of Shadows (considering my reading speed, my (un)fortunate abundance of free time and my love for these characters).  But who knows, I might just skip them all together and just dive right into Kingdom of Ashes… though I do want to read them. 

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 I’m also hoping to finally read Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling. It’s been on my TBR for months and it’s been almost a year since I bought it.

Although to be perfectly honest, the first time I tried to read it I found it really boring and the movie adaptation is my least favorite of all the films. Hopefully, this time I’ll stick to it.

 

 


As you can see my tbr for this month shouldn’t be very hard to achieve, it’s not very ambitious. Still, I’m hoping to read more if I can, but honestly, I don’t think I will. I have a feeling Kingdom of Ashes is just going to devastate me…

 

October Wrap up

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October was such a hectic month as far as feelings go. I don’t even know if it was more negative than positive because everything is just mashed up together… and it just flew by!

I was WORRIED, STRESSED, really fucking FRUSTRATED and just generally ANXIOUS for most of the time – partially because of my own subconsciously self-imposed pressure – and also because I’m an unnecessarily overcomplicated person. I mean, really, I worry about so much stupid stuff nowadays that I didn’t use to before – and it pisses me off that one of those things is still what other people might think of me (I’m slowly overcoming that though).

Some things that really fucking irritated me: my country’s bureaucratic bullshit; people who say they’ll call and let you know if you got/didn’t get the job – but then don’t. I’m an adult, I can handle rejection. Also, people who email you for a job interview and then disappear mysteriously after you reply to them…

Still, I was also very ENTHUSIASTIC and HAPPY about many things.

My mom and I will be moving sometime in November or December to a house that’s about one kilometer away from the beach – so that’s amazing and exciting!

Sweater Weather is here! And I’m loving it! This soft summer that we had this year was wonderful and I’m so glad this year Autumn is “behaving” like it’s supposed to – so rain, lots of wind and cold!

I started writing again and I’m not worried or anxious or having complicated thoughts about this at all. It’s fantastic. (It seems silly, but I’ve tried not feeling or being this way about my writing – and everything else in my life – before but it didn’t work.)

PLUS, I read most of the books that were on my TBR  (7 / 10)!

What I read: 

 

  • Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng – 4 stars
  • The History of Bees by Maja Lunde – 3 stars
  • A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms by George R. R. Martin – 4 stars
  • Winter Turning by Tui T. Sutherland – 3 stars
  • Escaping Peril by Tui T. Sutherland – 3.9 stars
  • Talons of Power by Tui T. Sutherland – 3.5 – 4 stars
  • Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo – 4.5 stars
  • The Demon in the Woods (short story) by Leigh Bardugo – 4 stars

I decided not to read The Mystery Knight: The Graphic Novel after all. I was interested in it mostly for the graphics but once I read the original story of The Mystery Knight I didn’t think that short book could possibly illustrate it faithfully. It was probably my favorite of the three short stories in A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms.


What I Watched: 

I decided this was finally going to be the October in which I watched a bunch of scary movies. So, I tried to do a 31 days of Halloween kind of challenge – and I failed miserably! I only watched 8 horror movies.

I ended up giving up mostly because it seemed like every movie I wanted to watch was really shitty and the ones I did know were really good and scary I didn’t really want to watch (like Lights Out, which I don’t want to watch because I used to be really afraid of the dark and I’m still pretty uncomfortable in the dark for several reasons, most of which irrational). 

  • My favorites: Venom, Paranormal Activity 4 and The Blair Witch Project.
  • My least favorites: Crazies, The Cabin in the Woods, Mom and Dad and The Witch.
  • I also watched The Dark Tower (movie adaptation of a Stephen King book) and it was a hugeeee disappointment. 

In terms of series, I watched so many and from such different genres. 

  • My favorites: Grey’s Anatomy (s13), Brooklyn Nine-Nine (s5), The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Spellman (s1),  9-1-1 (s2)
  • My Least Favorites: Siren (s1)
  • Entertaining but Ultimately Average: Grimm (s1)
  • The Ones I’m Currently Watching / Pretty Interested In: 9-1-1 (s2), Manifest (s1), Legacies (s1), The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Spellman (s1), Grey’s Anatomy (s14). 


Reviews & Other Posts:

‘Looking For Alaska’ Screen Adaptation News!

John Green, the amazing author of the amazing Looking For Alaska (you know, just the first book I’ve ever read in English and one of my all-time favorites), just shared on his social media accounts the main cast for the upcoming screen adaptation. 

(And if you don’t know Looking for Alaska, learn more about it on Goodreads.)

The characters Alaska and Miles will be played by Kristine Froseth and Charlie Plummer!

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Although they wouldn’t be my ideal cast (maybe Lucy Fry and Robert Sheehan, though I don’t particularly dislike Kristine Froseth), I’m definitely excited to see them bring these characters to life. 

John Green’s instagram caption (also posted on his twitter): 

In the Looking for Alaska Hulu series, Alaska will be played by Kristine Froseth (@kristine_froseth on instagram), and Miles will be played by Charlie Plummer (@charliefplummer on twitter and on instagram–but mostly on instagram).

I spoke to Kristine and Charlie on the phone yesterday and it was really special to have a conversation with the people who will become Miles and Alaska. I’m so grateful to them and to everyone involved with the Looking for Alaska series. It’s all starting to feel very real!

I am so grateful that LFA has an enthusiastic readership all these years after its publication. I know people have strong casting opinions, but I’d ask you to remember that the people who’ve been cast are human beings (and young ones), so please be kind if/when tagging them.

(Also, a friendly reminder that I do not cast movies or limited series adaptations on Hulu. But I did get to see both of these actors’ auditions, and they are both truly brilliant and embody the characters to me. They’re both also fans of the book, which is nice!)

Looking for Alaska will be getting a TV series adaptation (Hulu) instead of a movie adaptation.

I hadn’t heard about it until he posted this so I was more than a little surprised, to be honest. I am not unhappy with this news, though. In fact, I think it’ll be even better – especially since John Green will be one of the writers of the show!

This news was shared by these three on their social media accounts on the 30th so it really is very new! (At the moment that I’m writing is they are not even listed on the IMDB page yet.)

However, there are two other actors who are, namely the actors who will play Lara and Takumi. These are Maria Dragus and Shunsuke Okubo. (I’m not sure if this is recent news though). 

This is about all I know about the Looking for Alaska screen adaptation. I’ll definitely be following the news around it more closely, though. I just had to write a post about this as soon as I read John Green’s post. I hope you found it as exciting as I did. What do you think about the cast? Are you excited about the movie? Let me know in the comments section!