January Monthly Wrap-Up

January was a month of much post holiday rest, organization, and goal setting. 2019 was a massive healing year for me which meant I focused more on Quality vs. Quantity reading last year to make room for new life experiences. January however had me back in the saddle with books on my radar for the rest of the year. It was also the month where I participated in my very first Readathon (SMUTATHON Wrap-Up) Challenge & had a blast! It was truly the BEST way to start off the new year, light & fun with a side of steam ๐Ÿ˜‰

Besides a ton of steamy reading, I also found my love for Netflix backlist shows like Schitts Creek andย continued with the latest season of Grace & Frankie. I also started Journaling, something I’ve been wanting to get back into for years but never quite took the steps & placed pen to paper. Writing has been truly cathartic in my journey to self alignment & self healing. As the new year takes off, I’m also keeping a small list of places/things I’d like to visit & do. I’ll include snippets of some of these trips in future wrap-ups as a way for me to look back on & share with you lovely readers ๐Ÿ™‚

The Loner’s Lady by Jessa Kane – โœจ2.5 STARSโœจย (SMUTATHON WRAP-UP)ย This age gap romance just was NOT my cup of tea haha! it felt very primitive & not my idea of a good time with a fake dating trope. I was generous here with my rating but in all reality it was a quick read that left me very underwhelmed.

Grading Curves by Naima Simone -โœจ4.5 STARSโœจย (SMUTATHON WRAP-UP)ย GOODNESS! SUPER SEXY! who would’ve known a tattoo parlor would host such potential for steam haha! Naima Simone is on my list of go-to authors for smut ๐Ÿ˜‰

The King Maker by Kennedy Ryan – โœจ4.5 STARSโœจ(SMUTATHON WRAP-UP)ย Kennedy Ryan blew me away with this very heavily researched read. A perfect balance between hardcore relevant topics & romance, this one I definitely plan on reviewing here on the blog. This is a age gap romance I can get behind & best of all it follows our characters over the years from the time they met in their 20’s to present day. Can’t wait to read the sequel in the All the King’s Men Duet,ย The Rebel King.

The Headmaster by Tiffany Reisz – โœจ5 STARSโœจ (SMUTATHON WRAP-UP)ย Gothic Romance fever anyone?!? YEA that’s what Tiffany Reisz left me with after finishing Headmaster. I’mnot sure why but it gave me the same vibes I felt while reading Cassie Clare’s The Infernal Devices if only for the steam punk atmosphere. SO worth it especially if you dig Paranormal Romance.

SKYWARD by Brandon Sanderson – โœจ5 STARSโœจย (MY REVIEW)ย I wouldn’t be surprised to see SKYWARD make my end of the year TOP 20 of 2020! it gave me such an adrenaline rush & reminded me of my experience with Pierce Brown’s Morning Star. Not just cause of the camaraderie between the pilots but also because of the flight patterns & attacks that really jump off the page and pull you in. I already have secured a copy of the sequel STARSIGHT & a more happier little bean I could not be *jazz hands*

Beautiful Dreamer by Melissa Brayden-โœจ5 STARSโœจ(SMUTATHON WRAP-UP) This F/F Romance legit transported me to a small beach town & immersed me in every single characters lives like nobodies business! UGH! I did NOT want to leave & the characters who are the epitome of polar opposites had me shipping them so hard all throughout. I have a list of Melissa Brayden backlist books I will be reading throughout the next couple of months… the Next one on my radar is Strawberry Summer thanks to the wonderful Leigh Kramer who I appreciate wholeheartedly! โค a whole review will hit this blog in the very near future, currently I’m reading faster than I’m writing SMH! haha!

Tweet Cute by Emma Lord – โœจ5 STARSโœจย (MY REVIEW)ย on the Cuteness Meter, this one smashes the scale! This is another read that I may throw into my top 20 of 2020 but we shall see. I laughed & enjoyed the character interactions so much so that I traded in sleep haha! I have a full review linked above.

Ok soooo I may have binged almost all 5 current season of Schitts Creek onNetflix…I say almost cause in typical Lilly fashion I stopped myself from watching the last 3 episodes of season 5. I’m not a fan of endings & even though there is currently a season 6, I have to wait for it to hit Netflix sooo yea LOL! I had HUGE doubts about this show but JEEZ am I so happy I decided to give in & start this show. It appears to be super pretentious & ridiculous but I promise you there’s so much more depth to these characters. Ultimately it’s the reason I’ve fallen back in love with Netflix so if there are any shows that offer up this much comedic relief, please drop them down below in the comments Luvs!

OK! Bragging rights here cause my BF did NOT think this one was worth us going to see in theaters. WHELP! boy was he happy we went cause this was so GOOD! & possibly not the end of this franchise *fingers crossed* the boys are back & although they’ve aged just a bit, that does NOT stop them from getting back behind the wheel & catching them some bad guys…Ok well Marcus played by Martin Lawrence needs a bit of convincing & it is EVERYTHING seeing this duo back in action.


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WWW Wednesday 10/30/2019

WWW Wednesday is a meme hosted byย Sam @ Taking On a World of Wordsย and to participate all you have to do is answer the three Wโ€™s listed below. Once youโ€™ve posted your WWW, drop a link to your post in Samโ€™s comments <3โ€™s!

The questions:
1. What are you currently reading?
2. What did you recently finish reading?
3. What do you think youโ€™ll read next?

Two posts in one day? who am I?!? I’ve been on a reading frenzy this entire month and it doesn’t seem to be slowing down *fingers crossed* my review back log is keeping me up at night but that’s not what we’re here for today haha! I hope you’re all living your best reading lives & if you’re loving what you’re reading, please drop a reccomendation in the comments below. I don’t genre discriminate, all are welcome! โค

The Beautiful by Renee Ahdieh Currently I’m 200 pages into this YA Paranormal Romance (It’s being called Fantasy but I’m not getting that vibe)ย & really enjoying what I’ve read so far. I’ve seen many bookish buddies give this one mixed reviews & can totally understand why. This reads much slower & has a historical romance vibe to it. Personally I’m just a sucker for New Orleans which you are fully immersed in from the very first page. There is a subtle approach to the supernatural beings in this world, we aren’t directly told they are vampires however they fit the prototype we are familiar with. There’s also hints that It may not just be Vampires who share this world with humans & that has definitely piqued my interest. The MC is feminist AF & way ahead of her times which only has me admiring her on the page. More thoughts to come in my review later this week.

Dear Girls: Intimate Tales, Untold Secrets and Advice for Living Your Best Life by Ali Wong Currently I’m 45% into this audio-book & have lost count of the times I burst out laughing while walking in public & in my cubicle. Ali Wong’s letters to her daughters are raw, hilarious, and no holds barred. We see life as a struggling comedian in NYC & L.A, her dating life before meeting her husband, and life as a mom/career woman on her rise to fame. Ali Wong keeps it real with her daughters in a way I feel I would with my own little girl (one day haha!) as cringy as it may get. Mini Review to come.

The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo I listened to the audio-book, I’m a big fan of this author and her narrating voice is not to be missed. Having listened to With the fire on High as well as Pride by Ibi Zoboi (narrated by Acevedo) I just knew this was my preferred format. A short read, we get a Dominican MC who has been sexualized at a young age because of her rapidly developed body. She has a very religious mother & very little guidance on things she’s experiencing with her body as well as with boys/men. There’s a certain shame that hangs over her head that she is able to express through her poetry. This review is sitting in my drafts (almost finished) & will be posted this week but I will say that I 5 starred it & HIGHLY recommend!

The Never Tilting World by Rin Chupeco (Review linked) A stranger mash-up I have yet to read LOL! I really didn’t know what to expect going in other than this was being pitched as Frozen meets Mad Max. PRETTY ACCURATE! It honestly just solidified my feelings towards this author…BAD A**!!! I will read anything Rin Chupeco writes. I have a full review linked above & rated this one 4 stars ๐Ÿ™‚

Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir

Gideon the Ninthย is the most fun you’ll ever have with a skeleton.

The Emperor needs necromancers.

The Ninth Necromancer needs a swordswoman.

Gideon has a sword, some dirty magazines, and no more time for undead bullshit.

Tamsyn Muir’sย Gideon the Ninth unveils a solar system of swordplay, cut-throat politics, and lesbian necromancers. Her characters leap off the page, as skillfully animated as necromantic skeletons. The result is a heart-pounding epic science fantasy…

The Bromance Book Club (The Bromance Book Club #1) by Lyssa Kay Adams

The first rule of book club:
You don’t talk about book club.

Nashville Legends second baseman Gavin Scott’s marriage is in major league trouble. Heโ€™s recently discovered a humiliating secret: his wife Thea has always faked the Big O. When he loses his cool at the revelation, itโ€™s the final straw on their already strained relationship. Thea asks for a divorce, and Gavin realizes heโ€™s let his pride and fear get the better of him.ย 

Welcome to the Bromance Book Club…


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May Wrap-Up & Book Haul

It finally feels like Summer is right around the corner! &&& I’m also late with my May Wrap-Up/ Book Haul but that’s less surprising. I had one goal in mind for the month of May & that was to keep my book buying to the bare minimum because I’d be attending Bookcon the 1st week of June. I succeded & have already given myself some pats on the back for this little accomplishment. I also read a bit more than expected what with all the Bookcon excitement keeping me up at night lol, so that was nice. I also managed to squeeze in 2 movies & celebrated LairOfBooks 1 year Blogoversary!!! *throws confetti*ย Since we’re already a week into June, I’ll keep it short & sweet ๐Ÿ˜‰

Noteworthy by Riley Redgateย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜… (4 Stars)

The Love Interest by Cale Dietrichย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜… (4 Stars)

New Boy by Tracy Chevalierย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜… (4 Stars)

The Hundredth Queen by Emily R. Kingย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜… (4 Stars)

Eliza And Her Monsters by Francesca Zappiaย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜… (5 Stars)

The Red Hunter by Lisa Ungerย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜… (5 Stars)

 

I had a pretty great reading month in terms of quality & quantity (for me anyways lol). I was over the moon excited to hear my favorite Thriller/Suspense author released a book in May (Lisa Unger, Red Hunter)ย & when my twin called from the Strand Bookstore saying she picked me up a copy, I did a little dance. I’ve only read her books through Netgalley so this will be my 1st physical copy on my shelves, thanks Twin @ChicNerdReads! It was an amazingly atmospheric read that I had a hard time leaving behind once I had reached the last sentence. My 2nd favorite read of the month is hands down Eliza And Her Monsters which is another I can’t let go of. For everyone who has ever belonged to a fandom or was behind the creation of one, this one is for you! for those of US who seek & find comfort at home reading or watching a fave show because social anxiety is ever present in your life, this one’s for you! there is so much good in this book, I really do believe there’s something for everyone ๐Ÿ˜‰

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A Court Of Wings And Ruin (A Court of Thorns and Roses #3) by Sarah J. Maas

Into The Water by Paula Hawkinsย (BOTM additional book I added)

Eliza And Her Monsters by Francesca Zappiaย (Owlcrate)

Milk And Honey by Rupi Kaur

The Seafarer’s Kiss by Julia Emberย 

The Red Hunter by Lisa Ungerย (gift from my twin Gretchen @ChicNerdReads)

The Love Interest by Cale Dietrichย (BOTM selection)

Hubby & I started May off with Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.2, we typically take off 1 day from work every month to chill, hit up a movie & bookstore/comic book store…basically nerd out sans the two tiny humans giving us major side eye haha! I want to say that I enjoyed Vol. 2 more than the first but I think that my feelings toward it are the same (3.5 stars). Except I could’ve done without the cheesy dad bit. The soundtrack & Groot continue to be my fave parts of this movie. Trang & Lashaan over at Bookidote have a EPIC review or as they call it on their blog, a “Cinedote”ย (see here)ย which pretty much sums up how I feel about this movie. I’d give them a follow if I were you cuz they’re pretty dope ๐Ÿ˜‰

Towards the end of the month, my sister & I went on our sisterly date to watch Snatched cuz Goldie Hawn & Amy Schumer LOl. I love these ladies & the idea of them together on the screen at the same time reallllly gave me the giggles so I had to see what it was all about. OMYGOSH it was so funny! I’m talking bust your stitches funny smh lol, I spent it holding my tummy the entire time. It’s centered around a mother (Goldie) & daughter (amy) getting kidnapped in South America. They end up being more trouble for their captors than it’s worth with escape attempts turning into jaw dropping high jinks. As a fan of Goldie Hawn since childhood, it was great seeing her back on the screen. I recently read & enjoyed Amy’s autobiographical memoir The Girl With The Lower Back Tattooย ย within the last couple of months & can say I am now a fan, LOVE HER! Def recommend (5 stars) ๐Ÿ˜‰

Hope you all are having a wonderful June so far! How was your May? read/watch anything AMAZING? thank you for reading my late post & I’ll see ya all in the next post <3’s!

 

Friday Reads

Happy Friday Readers!!! I haven’t done one of these in a while but I’m trying to get in the habit of scheduling posts for days or weeks that i’m not feeling my best. Also, I’d like to know what you’re currently reading and enjoying or maybe not enjoying. My weekends usually see me putting my books away to spend time with my 2 tiny humans but I’m also working on ME time when they’re napping. For those that have responsibilities (doesn’t necessarily have to be kids)ย which is probably most of us, then you know that time is always evading us. I think this week alone has taught me the importance of self-care & stepping away when necessary for mental health. Starting next wknd I’ll be carving out ME time since this weekend is my 1 year Wedding Anniversary & there’s no escaping that LMAO!

Kicking off my Friday with the highly anticipated season 5 return of Orange Is The New Black!!! I’ll admit, last season wasn’t their best but that ending has me clamoring back for more so without shame I will binge the hell out of OITNB tonight into the wee hours of the morning. Sure I’ll pay for it come Saturday morning when the insanely cruel tiny humans sound the alarms at 7am…then again they may just meet me channeling my fave character “Red” in the kitchen ๐Ÿ˜‰

I’m actually back to reading 2 books at a time, I had taken a long break from that but the mood called to me & I answered. So I have 1 audiobook & 1 eGalley that I’m currently working my way through. I’m about 38% into Let’s pretend This Never Happened: A Mostly True Memoir by Jenny Lawsonย & once again Jenny has me making awkward gasping sounds in public while I try not to die of laughter. I loved Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things (review here) which came after this one but I am SERIOUSLY LOVING Let’s Pretend! but this time I’m savoring it & only listening to it when my anxiety is high or I’m feeling a bit down. It is legit the best medicine for any down day. I find myself enjoying this one more simply because she’s including stories about her dad and husband Victor pre-marriage that have me shaking my head in disbelief. The Taxidermy stories are still awkward but very funny & Jenny is unapologetically Jenny. Hearing how she thinks is kind of liberating, we all have a little quirk in us…she has a ton & I love her for it!

This morning I started Song of the Current (Song of the Current #1) by Sarah Tolcserย a YA Fantasy with its own mythos centered around a River God. The main protagonist Caro is strong willed & waiting for the day that the River God calls her name as has been the case for generations in her family. I’m only a chapter in & already hooked wondering where this adventure will take me. After reading & loving Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levensellerย earlier in the year, I am looking forward to another waterways adventure &&& PIRATES! I can always go for Pirates ๐Ÿ˜‰

What are you reading/watching this Friday? any plans for the weekend? ๐Ÿ™‚