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Sunday, July 31, 2016

Last Minute Joining with ARC August

ARC August is hosted by Read.Sleep.Repeat

There’s nothing like joining in at the last minute, right?! I’ve been debating on joining ARC August because lately when I set myself to read something, I haven’t been following through (seriously.. no idea what is wrong with me). But I do have quite a few ARCs that I need to read and it’s always fun to join in and read similar things with other people. Here is what I plan to read during ARC August. 

GOAL: I would like to read at least 8 ARCs. I hope to read more. I have quite a few from ALA that I haven't gotten to yet and would love to make a dent in that tbr pile. Here's a few that I would like to get to. I'm trying to keep my tbr laid-back to encourage me to read more.

I'll be starting with the book that I'm currently reading which is an ARC:

(Which I'm absolutely LOVING)

Have you joined ARC August? What are you planning to read? Any books you see on this post that you think I should read first?

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Review | The Summer of Sloane

Book Info

Title: Summer of Sloane
Author: Erin L. Schneider
Pub Date: May 3rd, 2016
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Source: Checked out from the library
Series: No

What it's about

Warm Hawaiian sun. Lazy Beach Days. Flirty texts with her boyfriend back in Seattle. 

These are the things seventeen-year-old Sloane McIntyre pictured when she imagined the summer she'd be spending at her mom's home in Hawaii with her twin brother, Penn. Instead, after learning an unthinkable secret about her boyfriend, Tyler, and best friend, Mick, all she has is a fractured hand and a completely shattered heart.

Once she arrives in Honolulu, though, Sloane hopes that Hawaii might just be the escape she needs. With beach bonfires, old friends, exotic food, and the wonders of a waterproof cast, there's no reason Sloane shouldn't enjoy her summer. And when she meets Finn McAllister, the handsome son of a hotel magnate who doesn't always play by the rules, she knows he's the perfect distraction from everything that's so wrong back home.

But it turns out a measly ocean isn't nearly enough to stop all the emails, texts, and voicemails from  her ex-boyfriend and ex-best friend, desperate to explain away their betrayal. And as her casual connection with Finn grows deeper, Sloane's carefree summer might not be as easy to find as she'd hoped. Weighing years of history with Mick and Tyler against their deception, and the delicate possibility of new love, Sloane must decide when to forgive, and when to live for herself.
-From Goodreads

My Thoughts

I picked up this one looking for a great summer read. I had heard some good reviews and was looking forward to seeing what these glowing reviews were talking about. Little did I know, I was about to be blown away. 

The story packs a punch right in the beginning. (For those that have read see what I did there;)) Right away I was drawn into Sloane's life. And I felt for her. Erin L. Schneider wrote in such a way that you feel for Sloane. You aren't told what to feel for her, either. You just feel for everything she's going through and wondering where she's going to go next.

I loved that Sloane is a such as strong character. She's a strong female in a many ways. She stands up for herself throughout the whole book and I admired this the most about her. She doesn't take much crap from anyone, though she isn't abrasive about it. She's dedicated and willing to help others. She was a breath of fresh air, and a really great character to follow.

The romance was fantastic. I loved watching the relationship grow at a wonderful pace. I loved getting to know Finn through Sloane's eyes and seeing where they go. The perfect balance of swoons and other relationship aspects.

I thoroughly appreciated the different relationship threading through the novel as well. There are family relationships; the ones between Sloane and her mother, her dad and her, her twin brother and her. There were also friendship dynamics between Sloane and her friends in Hawaii as well as Mick. The variety of relationships and the variety of relationship status's among her friends and family were not only realistic but also varied. To see different relationships grow, falter or just be was something very relatable to read about.

And the setting. I've never been to Hawaii, but I dream of going someday. I absolutely loved reading about the setting and the Hawaiian bits of the novel. I definitely want to read more books set in Hawaii! The Hawaiian setting really gave a beautiful summery feel to the story. 

This is the kind of contemporary that I love. The kind that makes you feel for the characters and what they're going through. The kind that is realistic. The kind that sticks with you. The kind that not only has romance, but has friendship and family relationships as well.

I've been recommending this book all summer and will continue to. It's such a great read for anytime of year. But should you be looking for a great summer read, please pick this one up. I have a feeling you'll enjoy it :)

My Rating

I don't think it will come as a surprise after this gushing review that I rated this one 
5 out of 5 stars

Have you read this one, if so what did you think of it? Have you ever been to Hawaii before or want to go? 

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

TTT | Facts (some weird) About Me

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by the lovely ladies over at The Broke and The Bookish.

This week's topic is 

Top Ten Facts About Me

1. I am the mom of two boys. 

I don't talk too much about my kiddos on the blog. But I have two little boys, 3 years old and 9 months :)

2. I'm a stay-at-home mom. I also plan to homeschool.

I became a stay-at-home mom after having my first son as daycare is way too expensive around here. I actually started my blog so I could have something that's for me that I can work on. I will be teaching my son this fall since he's preschool age. I'm so excited to homeschool and I'm most looking forward to teaching him to read. 

3. I LOVE coloring. and crafting, too.

I've always loved coloring. I used to buy kids coloring books and always kept them on hand. I have been SO happy with the new adult coloring book trend and having so many coloring books to choose from. I switch about among crafts, currently I do a lot of paper crafting, bullet journaling and planner decorating. 

4. My current purse is actually a tote bag.

I bought this tote from Evie's store (her designs are AMAZING.) and it has served as my purse. I have never been a purse person. I just got bags that looked good and when I got tired of it, every 6 months to a year or so, then I would get a new bag. They were all cheap bags, ones I found on clearance or for a good price. And of course, they had to be big enough to carry one book, preferably two. With my tote now, I can easily carry two books :)

5. I visit my library every week on the same day.

It's started to become a bit of a tradition that I visit my library every Saturday morning. I love the library as I come out with books that I get to take home and haven't paid for. I'm lucky that my library is just a mile away and is pretty well stocked both with books and friendly people. 

6. I'll give just about any book a chance if it peaks my interest.

While I mostly read YA, and mostly fantasy, I'll read just about anything. I've mixed in some adult, some classics, some non-fiction. If it peaks my interest and I'm in the mood for it, I won't throw away that book's shot. 

7. We have three pets, all different kinds of animals.

We have Boo, our cat. Que, our parrot (he's a Meyer's parrot we adopted) He does talk, he often says "Hey Birdie" since that's what I say when I feed him and he's always looking for more food, lol. and Loki is our newest addition, a puppy we adopted back in April. 

And a few random, weird-ish facts about me...

8. Before opening a can with a pop top (like soda), I have to tap it six times and when opened, I turn the tab to the left. 

I started doing this in high school and have done it every time since then. I think it started when someone told me to tap the top to settle the can and I turned the tab to keep track of which can was mine. Even though I probably don't need to do it anymore, I have to do it anytime I open a can now. 

9. When turning the volume up/down, the number I leave it at has to end with a 3 or 6.

I know this is SO WEIRD. I don't even know where this came from. I just know that I would get annoyed if the number was not 3 or 6. I've settled before on 1, 7, or 8 but they are the only exceptions. I hope you don't find me strange for this >.< 

10. I have arachnophobia and also, emetophobia. 

Arachnophobia, as you probably know, is the fear of spiders. And emetophobia, is the fear of vomit. I'm scared of all spiders, even the littlest ones. And I can't kill them, because that means they're family will know and come after me... LOL. but seriously, I'm so scared of them I can't kill them. I've been trying to get better so that my kids don't have my same fear. My fear of vomit is a bit weird. I can handle spit up from babies just fine. But people vomiting, no thanks. Especially if it's from a sickness that's contagious. I don't know where this fear came from but I do wish it would go away. 

Monday, July 11, 2016

June | All Wrapped Up

June was a pretty busy month but I read more than I thought and finished five books. The five books I read were all ones I enjoyed, so I think June was a successful reading month! 

Books I Read

     Summer of Sloane by Erin L. Schneider. This is the PERFECT summer read. I really loved this one. There's a review coming soon to explain all the things I've loved about this book. The setting, the characters, the story was everything I was looking for. If you want to read something summery with the perfect balance of fun and depth, please check this one this summer! I gave this one 5 out of 5 stars.

The Way to Walk the Game of Shame by Jenn P. Nguyen
I had a feeling I was going to really enjoy this book. There was no surprise that I did end up enjoying the book. The hate to love type of relationship was done so well. I couldn't get enough of the characters. This book was such a good read. I explain more of my love for this book here. I gave this one 4 out of 5 stars.

     Steeplejack by A.J. Hartley. There are many aspects about this book that I really appreciate. It's so well-written. The world is rich and industrial. There are diverse characters. I loved seeing into a new world, unique characters, and a strong and independent female character. This is unlike anything that I have ever read before and I really appreciate the many great parts this book has to offer. I gave this one 4 out of 5 stars. 

The Rose & The Dagger by Renee Ahdieh
I read and LOVED The Wrath & The Dawn last year. Going into this one, I had high hopes that I would love this one as much as The Wrath and the Dawn. It was a little rough getting into because I wanted more romance in the first part, but the last half was so wonderful. This duology has become one that I highly recommend and is a new favorite! I gave this one 4.5 out of 5 stars.

    One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid. I have read and loved two of Taylor Jenkins Reid's other novels and have loved both of them. This one I absolutely loved as much as the others. I can't say how great her books are but she has become an auto-buy author for me. Once I get my thoughts together on this book, so I'm not just flailing all over the place and gushing, I'll be writing a review for it! No surprise that this a 5 out of 5 star read for me. 


The only challenge the books I read ended up being for was the #RockmyTBR challenge. Two of the books I read this month were books that I own. Others were for review and out from the library. 

I can't believe that the year is over half done, and I know I better work some more on challenges!

Things That I Did 

Spent some quality time with family - It was my husband's birthday last month. Also Father's Day. It was fun celebrating and seeing family throughout the month. 

I went to ALA!! - This was an AMAZING trip. I got to see some awesome people again. I got to meet some new friends. And, of course, get some good books too that I can't wait to read. I had such a blast!

I hope June was a great month for you! What was your favorite book you read in June? What was something fun you did?