Mid-December Update: winter holidays, book haul & hobbies

First of all, I’d like to say MERRY CHRISTMAS, my friends. (Today was officially my last day of classes!) This is one of the first times I’ve ever felt this exhausted and stressed around Christmas and I won’t lie. I Am. Excited. This year I’m probably just going to spend Christmas with my mom and grandma instead of with everyone else in the family but I’m not super disappointed, to be honest. I love my family but they’re all exhausting. (My favorite part of Christmas is the confectioneries). 

Quick Semester Summary

This semester I just had too many things going on all the time. I’ve never planned so much! (I’ve definitely improved my organization skills, though.)  It was stupid to take six classes but I needed the credits. (Next semester though, I should only take five). But hey, I had fantastic grades and some of the stuff I learned this semester is going to be really helpful in the future, and some of it was even interesting. So, no regrets. 

An Unexpected Book Haul

(I literally just thought of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey after writing this title). So about two days ago, I had two tests (on the same day), one of which didn’t go as well as I wished it had (entirely my fault because I basically didn’t study at all, so it really didn’t go as bad as it could have had). Generally, when I have bad days, I feel like spending money. Whether it’s chicken nuggets, a notebook or a book, it just makes me feel better. (Treat Yo Self Friends). (By ‘spending money’, I didn’t necessarily mean spending a lot of money, by the way.) 

And so, I ordered four books…. even though I was supposed to be on a book ban…. until February. No. Regrets. 

Sem Título

I’m dying to continue The Raven Cycle after reading the first two books in less than a week. It’s just so good (as I’ve mentioned many, many times in the last few weeks. Not Sorry). 

For those of you who don’t know, I only started reading the HP book December last year. I don’t think that I would’ve enjoyed them as much when I was younger, nor would I have been able to appreciate it the same way.  It’s really hard to choose between all the lovely covers, though. I bought Philosopher’s Stone (of this cover series) in the summer last year for the sole fact that it was pretty cheap. There are these other covers though, that are black and white in the front cover and colorful on the spine (hardcovers btw) and I just love them but I really want to get the rest of these covers. Prisoner of Azkaban and Goblet of Fire are especially beautiful. 

Winter Holidays & My Many Hobbies

I’m  really hoping to get back into a bunch of stuff I love these holidays. Like, journalling, writing, painting, reading, watching anime…(maybe do some blogging)… This semester (and November and December especially) was exhausting and I just didn’t want to do any of these. I’m not setting any goals for myself though (other than to finish my driving lessons – which I’m not looking forward to. I want to get my license but I just don’t like the lessons that much.). I’m just going to do whatever I want whenever I want and not think about the time I wasted doing this or that. I’m just going to fully enjoy my holidays. 


 

As I mentioned earlier today is officially my last day of classes but technically (since I don’t have class today) it was yesterday. And it was fantastic. My last test went great, I delivered my final hellish assignment and I went to see the premiere of Star Wars: The Last Jedi and it was glorious. I loved it so much I might go see again. 

And I just want to wish some good luck to everyone who still has finals and assignments and whatnot and also wish everyone some truly Happy Holidays!

Here’s a random picture of a beautiful beach in Ericeira, Portugal, because it’s just too beautiful. 

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Review: The Dream Thieves

The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater

 

[Goodreads] Now that the ley lines around Cabeswater have been woken, nothing for Ronan, Gansey, Blue, and Adam will be the same. Ronan, for one, is falling more and more deeply into his dreams, and his dreams are intruding more and more into waking life. Meanwhile, some very sinister people are looking for some of the same pieces of the Cabeswater puzzle that Gansey is after…

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Review: Days of Blood and Starlight

Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor

 

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[Goodreads] Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love and dared to imagine a new way of living – one without massacres and torn throats and bonfires of the fallen, without revenants or bastard armies or children ripped from their mothers’ arms to take their turn in the killing and dying.

Once, the lovers lay entwined in the moon’s secret temple and dreamed of a world that was like a jewel-box without a jewel – a paradise waiting for them to find it and fill it with their happiness.

This was not that world.

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Favorite Quotes: Turtles All The Way Down by John Green

‘But I was beginning to learn that your life is a story told about you, not one that you tell.’

‘… meanwhile, I was thinking that if half the cells inside of you are not you, doesn’t that challenge the whole notion of me as a singular pronoun, let alone as the author of my fate?’

‘The thing about a spiral is, if you follow it inward, it never actually ends. It just keeps tightening, infinitely.’

‘I would’ve told her that Davis and I never talked much, or even looked at each other, but it didn’t matter, because we were looking at the same sky together, which is maybe more intimate than eye contact anyway. Anybody can look at you. It’s quite rare to find the someone who sees the same world you see.’

‘I was experimenting with feeling rather than stuck with it. True terror isn’t being scared; it’s not having a choice in the matter.’

‘Whether it hurts is kind of irrelevant.’

‘And so I drove along to one of those miraculous playlists, headed nowhere.’

‘Welcome to the future, Holmesy. It’s not about hacking computers anymore; it’s about hacking human souls.’

” ‘There’s no need to suffer.’ Which I’d argue is just a fundamental misunderstanding of the human predicament, but okay.”

‘I was thinking about how part of yourself can be in a place while at the same time the most important parts are in a different place, a place that can’t be accessed via your senses.’

Nolite te bastardes carborundorum (Don’t let the bastards get you down.)’ (*Which is also mentioned in The Handmaid’s Tale tv series, though I’m not certain if it’s mentioned in the book.)

November Wrap Up

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When you’re a university student, you reach a time at the end of the semester that is Exam Week (which for me is actually about a week and a half this semester). At this point, you no longer care about new episodes of your favorite show or about having/not having time to read. Between studying for your five or six exams, you basically just sleep, eat and try not to lose your shit (nap, watch a movie, listen to some music). 

It may sound like I’m exaggerating, but I’m not. It’s that stressful and that exhausting. I had an exhausting month of November and I still have two weeks of classes in December before my semester unofficially ends, in which I have literally 6 exams and two assignments to deliver. A large part of my stress was due to my driving lessons. At some point, I stopped looking forward to them and actually started to dread the days I had lessons (it got really bad) and I decided I’m not going to go through this again in December so I’m going to schedule fewer lessons for this month. 

I didn’t write as much as I intended but I started journaling again and went to the movies a few times and I don’t really feel bad about not doing certain things I wanted (because I’m just too tired to care at this point). 

‘The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid.’ – Jane Austen, Northanger Abbey

Books Read & Book Haul:

So, this month I only read these books, though I started quite a few. 

  1. Call Me By Your Name by André Aciman – 5 STARS!! 
  2. The Last Namsara by Kristen Ciccarelli – 4 stars
  3. Flame In The Mist – 5 STARS!!

And I’m also currently reading “Song of Myself” by Walt Whitman, “A Game of Thrones” by George R. R. Martin and “Frankenstein” by Mary Shelley. 

And I bought 

  1. Lost At Sea: The Jon Ronson Mysteries – Jon Ronson
  2. THEM: Adventures with Extremists – Jon Ronson
  3. The Men Who Stare At Goats – Jon Ronson
  4. Frankenstein – Mary Shelley
  5. A Dance With Dragons: Dreams & Dust – [Part 1/2] George R. R. Martin
  6. A Dance With Dragons: After The Feast – [Part 2/2] George R. R. Martin

Reviews:

 

Review: Turtles All The Way Down

Turtles All The Way Down by John Green

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[ Goodreads] : Sixteen-year-old Aza never intended to pursue the mystery of fugitive billionaire Russell Pickett, but there’s a hundred-thousand-dollar reward at stake and her Best and Most Fearless Friend, Daisy, is eager to investigate. So together, they navigate the short distance and broad divides that separate them from Russell Pickett’s son, Davis.
Aza is trying. She is trying to be a good daughter, a good friend, a good student, and maybe even a good detective, while also living within the ever-tightening spiral of her own thoughts. 
In his long-awaited return, John Green, the acclaimed, award-winning author of Looking for Alaska and The Fault in Our Stars, shares Aza’s story with shattering, unflinching clarity in this brilliant novel of love, resilience, and the power of lifelong friendship.

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Review: The Last Namsara

The Last Namsara by Kristen Ciccarelli

 

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[ Goodreads In the beginning, there was the Namsara: the child of sky and spirit, who carried love and laughter wherever he went. But where there is light, there must be dark—and so there was also the Iskari. The child of blood and moonlight. The destroyer. The death bringer.

These are the legends that Asha, daughter of the king of Firgaard, has grown up hearing in hushed whispers, drawn to the forbidden figures of the past. But it isn’t until she becomes the fiercest, most feared dragon slayer in the land that she takes on the role of the next Iskari—a lonely destiny that leaves her feeling more like a weapon than a girl.

Asha conquers each dragon and brings its head to the king, but no kill can free her from the shackles that await at home: her betrothal to the cruel commandant, a man who holds the truth about her nature in his palm. When she’s offered the chance to gain her freedom in exchange for the life of the most powerful dragon in Firgaard, she finds that there may be more truth to the ancient stories than she ever could have expected. With the help of a secret friend—a slave boy from her betrothed’s household—Asha must shed the layers of her Iskari bondage and open her heart to love, light, and a truth that has been kept from her. 

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Review: The Raven Boys

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

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[ Goodreads ] Even if Blue hadn’t been told her true love would die if she kissed him, she would stay away from boys. Especially the ones from the local private school. Known as Raven Boys, they only mean trouble.
But this is the year that everything will change for Blue.
This is the year that she will be drawn into the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys. And the year Blue will discover that magic does exist.
This is the year she will fall in love.

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Reviews: Heir of Fire, Queen of Shadows & Empire of Storms [SPOILERS]

Heir of Fire, Queen of Shadows & Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas 

 

It’s been difficult for me to write reviews lately and since I’ve loved all the books in this series, I thought it would be pointless to make different posts saying the same thing, so I decided to compile these reviews into a single post as you can see. 

There will be SPOILERS in this post, you are warned. 

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