The Selection by Kiera Cass
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
In an unusual dystopian world, society is distracted by it’s troubles by the Selection, which is a combination of The Hunger Games and the Bachelor. America doesn’t want to be Selected- she is already in love with someone else- but she realises that it is what is best for her family. When America finally meets Prince Maxon, the two of them begin a tentative friendship. Maxon knows that America is not interested in him but he finds her honesty refreshing.
This was the first audiobook I ever listened to and I found it just okay. The story was cliche and pretty easy to predict. However I did find this book pretty fun (and then I came home and read spoilers for the rest of the series and ruined any chances of me finishing the rest of the books). This was a great light read and it took me out of my reading slump. Definitely read this book if you’re looking for something fun and cheerful.
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I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Back in 2014, everyone seemed to be talking about this book. I got myself a Kindle copy and I was unimpressed. Noah’s tone annoyed me and the whole story seemed to drag.
I recently bought it on Audible during a sale and I’m glad I did. This was a wonderful, moving read and I am so happy I gave it another try.
This book is told in two parts in two different time frames by both Noah and Jude. Noah and Jude were once inseparably but then something tore them apart. Now they can barely stand to be around each other and it’s like the two of them have switched personalities. What neither Noah or Jude know is that each of them has a secret that could finally help to restore their shattered family. I started listening to this book on Audible but eventually reverted back to the eBook whenever it became impossible for me to listen. I could not stay away from this story. I NEEDED to know what was going to happen and how. I actually wanted to crawl into this book and scream at the characters- something that has not happened since I was a kid.
This book had me crying at times but I loved it nonetheless. This was an emotional read but so worth it. If you’re looking for something a bit different, definitely give this a try. This book deserves it’s hype.
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When I first started blogging I had no pictures in my blog posts. I didn’t think I needed them- I cared more about my words than the way they looked. I also had no idea where to get photos from. If you’ve had issues finding pictures for your blog posts this is for you.
1) Take Your Own- It’s your blog and no one know better than you what pictures you need. The easiest way to get pictures that you need is to take your own. However, keep in mind that you need great lighting and a good quality picture. I know nothing about photography so I always rely on websites instead. Also I really don’t trust my photo skills.
2) Death to the Stock Photo- Death to the Stock photo provides you with monthly photo collections based on a theme. Most of my pictures are from their site.
3) Picjumbo- Picjumbo provides you with new photos every few days and they occasionally allow you access to their premium packs. Their photos are of a high-quality and always have a theme depending on the time of the year. Need a Christmas or Easter-themed photo? They have you covered!
4) Canva- There is no end to what you can do with Canva. Use it to create social media banners, blog posts, infographs or printables. I especially like using Canva to add text to my pictures from Picjumbo or Death to the Stock Photo.
5) Pexels- I LOVE LOVE LOVE Pexels. Simply type in what you’re looking for in the search(e.g, a picture of a laptop) and pick from one of their many choices.
How do you get pictures for your blog? Have you tried any of the above sites? I’d love to know below.
The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Anna has agoraphobia and spends her days watching her neighbours, drinking large amounts of wine and taking the wrong dosage of pills. When the Russells move in, Anna befriends the mother and son. But one day, Anna sees something in the Russells house that she was not supposed to. But who is going to believe someone who has a drinking problem AND medications that may induce hallucinations?
From the first very second that I heard about this book from a fellow book blogger, I knew I wanted to read it. I’m not really a fan of mysteries (usually I get bored and skip to the end but that didn’t happen this time) but this was definitely one of my favourite reads for 2018. A. J Finn’s writing is captivating and I was drawn in from the very first page.
Anna is a cliche as an unreliable narrator with a drinking problem but it was difficult to not feel sympathy for her and her trauma.
This book had me guessing throughout and with all of it’s plot twist and turns. Despite my best efforts, I did figure out a few pieces of the puzzle only for the book to throw me another surprise. I LOVED IT. I definitely recommend this book to anyone who is looking for their next read. This book took me on a roller-coaster ride and I loved it!
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Does anyone even care about their lecturer’s office hours? I know I certainly didn’t..until I started my third year of college and my classes clashed. If it wasn’t for office hours, I probably would not have graduated. This is why you should take advantage of them (preferably before you realise that you’re failing your classes)
1) Your lecturer gets to know you- personally I don’t like the idea of my lecturer getting to know me. But if you want a letter of recommendation or help on an assignment, it’s helpful to have a lecturer in your corner. Knowing your lecturer outside of the classroom also allows you to expand your professional circle which can help when it comes to job hunting. (*Sends LinkedIn request*)
2) You gain a greater understanding of the work- most of my meetings with my lecturers were to discuss assignments or concepts that I didn’t understand. One meeting that was especially valuable was when my lecturer ran through concepts quickly with me. It amazed me how easily he explained everything and how easily I was able to understand. The fifteen minutes in his office did more for my education than the entire semester of classses.
3) You can find out exactly what your lecturer expects of you- The day of my driver’s test, I missed my last Criminology lecture as well as the scope for my exam. My lecturer was more than willing to meet with me to give me the scope and tell me what she was looking for. Since it was my first year at college and I had no idea how to write an essay, that was a really productive session.
4) It’s the lecturer’s job- okay this is a stupid reason to attend office hours but hey lecturers are around to help you! If you can’t ask a question in class, pop in to visit your lecturer and ask them in private.
Some of my best and most effective learning has been done during office hours. Whether it’s learning to write an essay, revising assignments or going through concepts to make certain you understand it, office hours are a great tool for college students.
Do you make use of office hours? Let me know below.
The Trouble with Flirting by Rochelle Morgan
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
This book was much longer than previous ones in the series but it didn’t drag so that was good. Livi makes a very convincing misfit who longs to change her nerd status as she enters college. I loved that this book was so real. I’ve seen so many people struggle with their image the way that Livi did and I was glad for the insight that this book brought me. Originally I thought that the romance would seem cliché but it happened gradually enough to seem natural.
My favorite part was that this book didn’t seem forced to me. It told the story of a rich girl trying to fit in. This story was not rushed. It was written well and there were themes such as friendship, fitting in and infidelity.
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No matter if it is your dream job or not, not every day at work is going to be perfect. Some days are just awful and there is nothing to do but get through it. Here are five tips to deal with a bad day at work:
1) Keep it to yourself- Just because you’re having a crappy day doesn’t give you the right to take it out on anybody else. Keep your mood to yourself and if it helps to isolate yourself from others, then do it. I keep to myself whenever I’m in a mood and I’ve worked in the same company long enough that I’m left alone whenever I need that space.
2) Take a walk- Sometimes just getting out and having some fresh air and sunlight is exactly what you need. If it is possibly for you to go take a walk outside, DO IT. I remember once having a day so horrible that I was close to crying. I took a walk to the nearby garage during my break and returned to work feeling a million times better.
3) Share your concerns with a friend- Sometimes opening up to a friend as to why you’re feeling the way you are, can help you feel better. Just be careful not to be disrespectful about co-workers, management or the company.
4) Do something to cheer yourself up- Go shopping, eat your favourite meal, listen to upbeat music. Do something that you know will make you feel better immediately.
5) Stay away from social media- I don’t know about you but I feel like social media is the one place I can feel free to just be myself. Which is why I avoid it when I know I’m upset or angry. Don’t let your single bad day at work be broadcast to your 500+ friends and followers.
What do you do when you’re having a bad day at work? Let me know below.
March was a pretty great month for my bookhaul. I got ton of great reads and it was actually a struggle for me to pick what to read.
1) SPCA Books:
I have been looking for Geek Girl for ages!!! I have two other books in the series and can’t read them without reading this first. I also finally got my own copy of Me Before You which is one of my favourite books. Lastly I started Ransom My Heart when I was in college and stopped midway. It was really interesting and well-written so I can’t wait to finish it.
So somehow I’ve fallen into collecting Nancy Drew books. I’m not a huge mystery fan and I KNOW I’m not going to start them anytime soon but I just like having them with the other “Childhood Favourites” books I’m collecting like the Goosebumps series and Mary-Kate and Ashley. I also took The Secret Garden because I gave away my copy when I was a kid. Lastly I took Unfiltered by Lily Collins and a few other Non-fiction reads that looked really interesting.
2) Bargain Books:
I accidentally bought The Winner’s Kiss thinking it was the first book in the series- it’s actually the third. The rest of the books were books I really wanted. I read the entire series of Demon Trapper books and have been looking for Foretold for ages.
I also bought these books earlier on in the month when I was having a bad day. I’m most excited to read Paper Butterflies. I remember when it first came out and there was so much of hype about it. I’m going to read it as soon as I can.
3) Review Copy:
I received a review copy of The Woman in The Window from Jonathan Ball Publishers. I started reading it as soon as I got it and it is a pretty gripping novel. It follows the pretty cliche plot of “woman with agoraphobia sees something she shouldn’t” but I just KNOW this novel is going to have an epic ending.
What new books did you get recently? What are you reading? I’d love to know below.
Blood Fury by J.R. Ward
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Rich vampire aristocrat, Peyton accidentally causes his teammate Novo to be attacked in battle. As Novo tries to recover from her brutal injuries, Peyton realises that he might have feelings for her. Feelings that have more to do with his heart than his body. Peyton has always found Novo attractive but as they spend time together, he starts to realise that he wants a future with her. However Novo is carrying painful scars from her past and refuses to let anyone in. The last time Novo fell in love, the vampire left her pregnant and moved on to her sister. Peyton knows that Novo is hiding some sort of hurt but he is determined to help her through it.
Meanwhile Saxton find an attraction to Ruhn, a new and reserved member of the household. Saxton and Ruhn was an odd pairing but I loved them together. Originally I was only interested in this book for Peyton and Novo. However their relationship seemed more of an “instant love” thing and I soon got bored. Despite that, I really enjoyed this book. I never grow tired of the world-building and the characters in this novel. I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys romance or fantasy.
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The ebook VS paperback debate has been raging on for centuries. Ok, not really but it feels that way. I remember when ebooks first came out and bookworms declared that nothing would kill their precious paperbacks. And now there are ebook bookworms, paperback bookworms, hardback bookworms, audible bookworms, people who go see the movie and then get the books (Why though?). For me, I don’t really have a preferance. I read both ebooks and paperbacks. I don’t read hardbacks coz they’re uncomfortable but I love owning them (don’t judge me). Here are 10 reasons why I prefer eBooks to paperbacks.
- You can carry a million books with you at once- Back when I was in college, I used to carry hundreds of books to read in between classes. It was great since I could read whatever I felt like reading instead of being restricted to just the book in my bag (which was usually my assigned novel. Not fun to read at all.)
- You can read anywhere- Read in the car, read in the line at the grocery store, read in the toilet, read in public and not have people bother you. For some reason it’s more socially acceptable to be stuck with your phone in hand than with a book.
- No need to use bookmarks- I don’t know about you but I am forever losing my bookmarks. eBooks don’t need bookmarks which helps me stay in the middle of 3-5 different books without the risk of losing my precious bookmarks.
- Books can be 700 pages and you don’t feel that weight- I was shocked when I first saw “Winter” by Marissa Meyer in print. I READ THAT??? In three days? HOW?
- Usually cheaper- You can spend tons of money on eBooks without coming anywhere close to what you would pay for a paperback. Also Amazon makes it ridiculously easy to purchase Kindle books. One click and voila, you have a new book.
- eARCS- eARCS are one of my favourite reasons for eBooks. You can read copies of books before they release!
- I read ebooks faster- I don’t know if it is just me but I read eBooks faster than print books. This is a definite plus for me since I can get my reviews done faster.
- Read in the dark- I love snuggling up in bed with my Kindle and the lights off. Have you read a horror book in the dark? It’s thrilling. (Random fact- I read Harry Potter before bed once and was woken up by lightning with the thought that “Voldemort is coming to kill me!”
- Takes up less space- This is great for someone who buys so many books. Less space= used more books
- Harder to damage- I have the awful habit of accidentally damaging my books which of course never happens with eBooks.
Do you prefer eBooks or paperbacks? I’d love to know below.