Sadie

34810320Sadie by Courtney Summers

3_stars

I am always a fan of when a book is written in a different way. To get a new and fresh reading experience is nice every now and then, so when I heard that Sadie was a murder mystery/ true crime/ podcast style book I was really intruiged.  This was like nothing I’ve ever read before and when I found out that it had a full cast on audiobook I instantly bought it and began listening right away. I absolutely loved the audiobook version and found myself addicted and needing to find out exactly what happened to Sadie’s sister and what happened to Sadie through her own recount of experiences and through the podcast narrarator’s findings. It was great! I was so fully invested in this story from the very beginning. It was easy to see exactly what was happening and it all pieced together perfectly to give you one big picture of all the horrors these poor girls faced.

Sadie is a teenage girl whose drug addict mother leaves her and her little sister in the care of their grandmother. Luckily this grandmother owns a trailer park so the girls have a place of their own to stay in while still going to school and attempt to live as normal lives as possible. But when Sadie’s younger sister ends up murdered, Sadie thinks she knows who is responsible and runs away with a single mission in mind: to get revenge on the one person who took her world from her, her sister’s murderer. But along the way she finds out that this is a much bigger situation than she ever could have imagined and it will take everything from her to exact her revenge.

I loved how real and gritty and honest this book was. You feel like you are really there with these people in this small town, sitting at the diner, eating a slice of apple pie. The characters are so vivid, each one like someone from your past that you can relate to exactly. I can’t describe how different the experience of this book is, but it just works for some reason. I loved that as a reader, you find out things as the podcast narrator does and each clue and change of POV gets you a little bit closer and closer to that inevitable ending of when Sadie gets her revenge. But the suspense is killer! I couldn’t stop listening,

My only complaint being the ending, and since I don’t want to spoil this for anyone I won’t go into detail. I just will say that I felt like I wanted more. There is such a build up to find an answer and then it suddenly is over before I felt like my feelings could catch up, much less feel resolved. I need maybe a follow up book or something more. But that is my only reason I even dared drop the star rating down to a 3 star. If it hadn’t ended the way it did, I think this could have easily been a five star read. But for experience and audiobook version quality and enjoyability I’d definitely say its a five star experience and definitely worth the read!

This is one that does have a few triggers that you should be warned about. Some sexual situations that might not be suitable for everyone. And there’s the fact that this entire book is pretty much based off of a girl who wants to kill her little sister’s murderer. So with that being said, you have to go into this with tough skin and not with a queasy stomach. I was beyond into this book though and think its a great audio read if anything!

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If You Liked This Book

19288043If you want more of that killer mystery vibe, then I’d suggest reading Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. These books both show you a darker side to what some people are willing to do and what they will go through in the sake of revenge. Told from the POV of the women themselves, these can really show you how dark the world can be sometimes.

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Let’s Discuss

Have you read Sadie or listened to it like I did? What did you think of it? I’d love to know! IF you haven’t read it, is it something you are planning on reading? Or not your type of book? It’s definitely different from a lot of what I’ve been reading lately, so I’m not usually one to read true crime but it was definitely interesting!

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Earth’s End

26760091

Earth’s End (Air Awakens #3) by Elise Kova

5_stars

Vhalla is at the front lines of the war and as her magic grows so does her fame. More than one source is out for her death, but her spirit and magic is earning the respect from the other soldiers. Her relationship with the crown prince is getting stronger yet is as tenuous as it has ever been in the face of the sovereign.

 

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The Story

This book is such a tumult of emotions. I’m not sure if I ever went through so much swinging of whether or not I ship certain characters or not. I thought I might get bored with this book, but Kova kept me intrigued by not only the more political aspects that are being brought in, but the continued addition to the magical elements that Vhalla has to discover as well as the advancement of her powers. The relationship almost hits a stalemate but, oh man, it gets a little heart wrenching. The ending though, had me shooketh. How could Kova just end it like that? It’s not as cliffhanger-y as the second book, but definitely left you wondering how the story was going to progress.

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The World Building

How is it that we’re into the third book but still get a lush set to work with. I love that the world building is advanced with the magic and culture that is brought in. Kova is so good at building such a colorful world within such a dreary situation. I love getting to know more and more about the magic and the crystals in this series.

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The Characters

Could Prince Aldrik be more of a wanker? Spoiler alert, he’s in love with Vhalla, but his terms of endearment towards her got old really fast. Like seriously dude, chill ouuuuut, because no one likes someone that clingy. He does have some incredibly sweet gestures, but sometimes he can also be a complete ass.

Vhalla deserves so much more than what she is handed. She is such a queen and incredibly powerful. Like seriously girl, whip these fools off the face of the earth and do your thing.

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The Soundtrack

Fleurie – Hurricane

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Bullet Journal 2018 Week 41 Spread

Birthday week! Make sure you are following Rae and I on Instagram to see details of our birthday giveaway! Sorry this one isn’t international >_< I hope you all are having a wonderful October so far! We’re halfway through already and I just can’t believe it!

Week 41

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This spread is a little weird just because again I split my week up with where I am spending my days. I thought it would be cool to have the OCT peeking over the calendar, but it sorta just looks like weird lettering…maybe need at least half instead of a third of the letters.

I’m Curious  \ ^_^ /

Do you like my new spread? Do you use your BuJo daily? Have any fun bujo hacks? Who do you like to follow on Instagram? What types of tools do you use?

From the Shadows of the Owl Queen’s Court

41101775From the Shadows of the Owl Queen’s Court (Yarnsworld #4) by Benedict Patrick

5_stars

ARC provided by the author for an honest review.

I have been fortunate enough for the last two Yarnsworld books to have been included in Bendict’s ARC group and I couldn’t be more thankful. After picking up the first two books in this series a couple of years ago, I instantly fell in love with this world and its dark fairy tale atmosphere. These books have such a grim and almost spooky feel to them but at the same time are charming and whimsical. They not only follow a “current” storyline, but each book alternates to chapters of tales and folklore that corresponds with each book and its setting. This one was different from the first three because we actually have returned to the Magpie King’s forest from the first novel, They Mostly Come Out at Night. While the rest of the books each take place in a different part of this magical world that Benedict has so wonderfully created.

In this book we follow two different character arcs. One being a slave girl Nascha, and the other being the son of the current Magpie King, Bradan. Nascha has grown up in the Owl Queen’s Court, hiding her white hair and poisoning herself to keep her visions at bay all in the sake of keeping her life. For if the royalty were to find out that she carried some of the true Owl Queen’s characteristics they would kill her on sight. So instead she just dreams of running away all the while befriending the princess in hopes to gain her freedom in any way she can. Meanwhile, Bradan is living a hard life as well trying his best to do his sick father’s job of protecting the people who dwell among the Magpie King’s forest but still somehow always getting the blame for everything that goes wrong. Just when he thinks that all is lost though he comes across an opportunity that might lead to greatness but at what cost?

The setting in these books is filled with so much magic, creatures straight out of nightmares and folk of all sorts. There are giant crows with skeletal heads, girls made from the bark of trees, foxfolk who travel in caravans and perform where a penny can be made. The lands range from the sea to the forest, and everything in between. There is so much imagery and its so particularly described that the images seem to form effortlessly. Reading these books is a treat in that aspect. I love the way that it almost transports you to this dark and mysterious wood, where you jump at every crack of a twig or rustle of leaves. I can almost smell the moldy leaves of the forest floor when I’m so into these books that I can’t tell whats reality anymore.

There’s not a dull moment either. From the moment this began with giant beavers attacking poor farmers, to running away with a traveling caravan. There’s romance, fighting, magic, and more. I don’t think that there was ever a moment where I was bored while on this journey through Yarnsworld. I love that it all balances out so well, you never get sick of the plot because its constantly changing. And then on top of that there are the perfectly integrated folk tales that keep you intrigued with the history of this world and all the things happening in this book.

Benedict Patrick is a gem of an author that has written these wonderful books that are so unique and different from anything else I have read. Yarnsworld is truly one of a kind and you have to experience it for yourself to really understand. These are like the real fairy tales that you weren’t told as a child for they can definitely make you jump at a bump in the night. But at the same time they are almost so whimsical and romantic that you want to get swept away in the love story hidden in there as well. This book is definitely a perfect addition to the Yarnsworld series and I can’t wait to see what Benedict comes up with next!

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If You Liked This Book

29743933This is a rare instance where I am going to recommend a book you might want to read BEFORE the book I’ve written this review about. While they are both stand-alones, reading They Mostly Come Out at Night also by Benedict Patrick will give you more of the backstory and depth to From the Shadows of the Owl Queen’s Court. Both are set in the same world and bring some of the same characters into play. But either way, they are both fantastic books that you should definitely give a try!

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Let’s Discuss

I absolutely love this series and its crazy to me that they aren’t more widely known. That doesn’t take away from their amazingness though, or my tendency to push them on everyone who asks for a good book suggestion! Do you have a favorite series that you feel deserves more love? I’m curious to know!

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Down the TBR Hole 34

This was originally made by Lost in a Story, and is such a fantastic idea. Here are the instructions:

Go to your goodreads to-read shelf.
Order on ascending date added.
Take the first 5 (or 10 if you’re feeling adventurous) books
Read the synopses of the books
Decide: keep it or should it go?

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The Books:

15797394Book #171

Between Two Thorns (The Split Worlds #1) by Emma Newman

Date added: January 4, 2017

Initially I thought this sounds like Shades of Magic, but I love the idea of the regency meets modern day meets fae aspect. So I am curious to see what this has to offer.

THE JUDGEMENT: Keep

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18166936Book #172

The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender by Leslye Walton

Date added: January 5, 2017

I don’t get what this story is supposed to be about, and on that alone I am going to remove it from my list. Also I’m not really in the mood for magical realism right now.

THE JUDGEMENT: Go

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17205118Book #173

The Beast (The Hunter Legends #1) by Lindsay Mead

Date added: January 5, 2017

B&TB retelling with some steam punk? Sign me up.

THE JUDGEMENT: Keep

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9627755Book #174

Isla and the Happily Ever After (Anna and the French Kiss #3) by Stephanie Perkins

Date added: January 14, 2017

Wait, I thought I already read this?? Guess not.

THE JUDGEMENT: Keep

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31374397Book #175

What’s a Soulmate? by Lindsey Ouimet

Date added: January 18, 2017

UGH this cover so pretty! I like the idea of black & white to color soulmate meet cute.

THE JUDGEMENT: Keep

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31945438Book #176

Silver Blood (Series of Blood #1) by Emma Hamm

Date added: January 20, 2017

Wait, so you’re sharing your body with another magical being? I must read so I get a better grasp on this.

THE JUDGEMENT: Keep

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15703770Book #177

The Runaway King (The Ascendance Trilogy #2) by Jenifer A. Nielsen

Date added: January 25, 2017

I liked the first book, let’s keep going. Also, skimming through some other reviews I saw the world pirate.

THE JUDGEMENT: Keep

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8428195Book #178

Entwined by Heather Dixon

Date added: January 25, 2017

UHM 12 Dancing Princesses retelling with some eerie vibe. I’m here for it.

THE JUDGEMENT: Keep

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30531841Book #179

The Great Pursuit (Eurona Duology #2) by Wendy Higgins

Date added: January 26, 2017

Ending to a duology. I just need to get it out of the way. I liked the first book, why haven’t I finished?

THE JUDGEMENT: Keep

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25566671Book #180

Reign the Earth (The Elementae #1) by A.C. Gaughen

Date added: January 26, 2017

There are trigger warnings in some reviews for rape, and abuse, torture that I am just not comfortable with.

THE JUDGEMENT: Go.

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Starting TBR shelf total: 408

Total books kept: 8

 

I’m Curious  \ ^_^ /

What do you think of my decisions? Have you read any of these books?

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Mirage

32768520Mirage (Mirage #1) by Somaiya Daud

5_stars

I’ve been having a hard time putting to words my exact feelings of this book. I listened to it on audiobook and at the end, there was an interview with Somaiya Daud about her thoughts, inspiration, and meaning in her message written so eloquently on the pages of Mirage. The interview really opened up my eyes and made me understand so much more than my first impression of what this story meant and the enjoyment of reading a really beautiful book. Mirage is about family and history and religion and how all of those things could be taken from us if we don’t fight to keep them alive. It’s also a look into a future where we have a achieved travel in space and to other solar systems and yet our heritage and culture will still follow us no matter what planet we might be on. And in the face of a leader who would like to take that away and live in one unified front we must fight to keep our past from disappearing altogether. So my trouble comes with trying to give justice through this powerful message through my own meager words.

Mirage is a Moroccan inspired sci-fi fantasy. Based in a different solar system than our own, there are people still fighting for their own language, reiligion, and freedom. Amani comes from a conquered planet where her traditions and heritage are slowly being erased by the Vath Empire. As a tradition of her people, after their young come of age, they hold a ceremony to recognize this tradition into adulthood, and on Amani’s ceremony night with others in her small farming community, the Vath turn her entire world upside down when they threaten those she loves in order to steal her away for unknown reasons. She is then held against her will in a secret royal palace where she discovers that she surprisingly looks almost identical to the cruel half-Vathek Princess Maram. Maram is disliked by all her conquered people so much that she needs a body double and so she forces Amani to take on the role of her protector where she will stand in for the princess in dangerous situations.

Amani was such a strong character. I loved that in the face of so much change and cruelty she still stuck to her love for her family and found the strength to adapt so she could protect them at all cost. She realizes that she must learn to become what they need her to be if she ever wants to return home to her family. And being a dreamer and poet at heart plays to her advantage as she inspires those she meets to see past the violence and conformity in hopes to eliminate this fear they all live with constantly of being who they truly are. Along the way to becoming Princess Maram, Amani has to also play the part of fiancé to Idris. But their time together starts to feel a little too really for Amani.

Somaiya Daud also says in the interview, that she wanted to weave a strong thread of poetry throughout Mirage as an homage to the way that it holds such an important role in Moroccan culture. It is the base of their language, and much of their literature is written through poetry. We see a lot of it in Mirage, especially where Amani is concerned. She loves the poetry of old and if given the opportunity could be a poet herself. I thought that this was such a beautiful way to bring this part of the culture into the story. Poetry is such an emotional and relatable way to connect to a story and my heart was captivated throughout this one.

The end of this book leaves on quite a cliffhanger and I am definitely interested to see where this goes. I loved the authors voice and the beautiful way she writes that pulled me in from the very beginning. You can tell there was so much research, knowledge, passion and love that went into this book and it’s only the first in a trilogy! Daud mentioned a wedding in book two but not who we would expect! I can’t wait to find out who!! I’ll be eagerly anticipating the release of the next book, but until then Mirage will be running through my mind, inspiring me to really love my family and appreciate all that we have.

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If You Liked This Book

41205539If you were a fan of Mirage then you should jump into Grace and Fury by Tracy Banghart next! Both of these books had strong female roles with women who were thrown into a certain role of royalty that they were not prepared to take on. But through this role they stuck true to themselves and brought out the want to make life better for those around them. Both books also had a really unique take on the Fantasy genre with some sci fi and newer elements thrown in there as well.

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Let’s Discuss

Have you read Mirage? What did you think? Does knowing the authors meaning and inspiration behind their book help you connect with the story like it did for me? I’m curious to know what you think! Let me know in the comments below!

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The Book Juggle | October 10, 2018

This a new meme that we are starting here @vicariouslyvoraciously in attempt to organize our thoughts for all the books we are currently reading. This is so we can update the status of how far along we are in our current reads, how we are liking it so far, and any other general current updates on the books as we read them. Feel free to use this prompt to keep your currently reading status up to date with us! It can be used weekly, once a month, or as often as you like.  We love to see what everyone is reading and what they think!

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20658347Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas

Current Status: pg. 561 of 561

So I just finished this one!!! I got to the point where it was all happening and literally couldn’t stop myself from finishing it! I have said this so many times, but this book was such a turning point in this series for me. So much changes in Heir of Fire. The setting, the characters, the new characters, and so much more! I can’t get over how much this series makes me feel while I’m reading it. I go from elated, to devastated, to hopelessly in love in the span of a few pages! MY HEART! But I love it! Can’t wait for Queen of Shadows!

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35796008Dance of Thieves by Mary E. Pearson

Current Status: pg. 20 of 505

I’m still in the exact same place in this book. I think that Heir of Fire pretty much took over my life last week and so this poor beauty got stuck on the back burner for a little bit. This is also the only Physical book (no ebook or audio) that I’m reading right now so its a little more inconvenient to carry around or listen to while I’m doing chores or driving. I promise I will get back into this one soon though!

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36949995The Boneless Mercies by April Genevieve Tucholke

Current Status: 19% (audiobook)

I always tend to have one audiobook going along with the rest of my reads and this time I have chosen The Boneless Mercies! I thought that the dark and eerie vibe to this one would be perfect for Halloween and the month of October in general! And I’m LOVING it so far. The writing is beautiful and almost poetic, while the characters are dark and fierce. I can’t wait to see where this one goes!

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Let’s Discuss

What are you currently reading? Do we have any books in common? I’m curious to know what you have on your plate for October? Any spooky books?! Let me know in the comments below!

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Top Ten Tuesday 10/9| Longest Books I’ve Ever Read

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

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27877138It by Stephen King

We’ll start off with the longest, which is definitely IT by Stephen King which totals at around 1100 pages depending on which edition you happen to be reading. I own the paperback which is a little over 1100 but regardless is still the largest book I have ever read. The good thing is with it being so scary and the way King writes it flies by pretty quick.

6690798The Passage by Justin Cronin

This is one of my top favorite books that I have ever read, so the fact that its HUGE is kind of a bonus for me. I actually have read this one in particular three times now and its still just as amazing to read each and every time. The size of this book is probably due to the fact how much is covered in just the very first book. I love it!

123557Brave Story by Miyuki Miyabe

I have actually included this book in another Top Ten Tuesday, but it fits this prompt as well, so here it is again! This was a MASSIVE book but it reads like a video game and just that fact alone had me flipping the pages faster than you can blink. The story is great all the way through and it hardly feels like its just under 1000 pages.

77522Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling

Now even though I have read all the Harry Potter books, this was the largest of them all at about 870 pages!!! I honestly didn’t even realize it was that many until I started looking for books to fit this prompt! That just goes to show how amazing these books are that no matter how big they might be they were never too daunting to pick up and devour!

18619684The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

This wasn’t the biggest book ever but at 500 pages it can easily fall into this category. I think sometimes a book feels bigger from the content that it has within its pages and in this book there is so much emotion and time covered and story to tell that it feels like a much bigger book than the number of pages it has. Still, 500 is quite a bit to read!

227711I Know This Much Is True by Wally Lamb

This was a heavy book, and not just in weight. The story of twin brothers, one going through some serious mental health problems, and the other who isn’t but is constantly struggling with the big “why”. Why does his mirror image struggle so much but he doesn’t. Its a lot to cover within 897 pages but Lamb manages to give you all the feels.

28260587Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas

This is one of those books where I wanted it to be 2000 pages because I did NOT want it to end! At 693 pages it is still a big book, but I think any fan of SJM knows the feeling that they could read and read and read her books without ever wanting them to end. SO MUCH happens in this book its hard to think that its under 700 but somehow it flies by nonetheless.

25944798The Beauty of Darkness by Mary E. Pearson

Here’s another author that can write to her hearts content and no matter how long the book may be, I will be there to read every word with a huge smile on my face. This book was 679 pages of purely beautiful writing that kept me enchanted to the very last page. When an author does a fantastic job reading really big books is so enjoyable.

29236299Gemina by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

The unique way this book is written makes the 659 pages it contains seem like a breeze. I just finally got into this series at the beginning of this year and blew through them all so fast because they were so different and so so good! I can’t describe the journey these books take you on, but its worth every last page to experience them for yourself!

29939230A Conjuring of Light by V.E. Schwab

And to conclude this list, coming in at 624 pages, we have Victoria Schwab with A Conjuring of Light! Schwab is another one of those authors that I’d read just about anything she writes so no matter if its 10 pages or 1000 I don’t think that there could be a limit to how many pages of her writing I would read. This was a fantastic conclusion to an an even more fantastic series, no matter the page count!

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Lets Discuss

What do you think of my selections? Any that you would have changed? Added? I’m curious to know the largest books you have read!! Let me know in the comments below!

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Shadow of the Fox

37004954Shadow of the Fox (Shadow of the Fox #1) by Julie Kagawa

3_stars

ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley
Publish date: October 2, 2018

Yumeko is half kitsune and likes to play pranks on the monks at the temple where she lives. But when an oni and horde of demons attack the temple, she is the only survivor that must take a sacred piece of scroll to another temple for protection. On her journey she meets many different type of people and encounters relentless dangers from those who seek the scroll.

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The Story

Having had studied Japanese and the culture, as well as having had grown up on anime, let’s just say I was incredibly excited for this book. I have a genuine love for kitsune and have even started writing a mg/ya book with a kitsune (I doubt I’ll ever finish). So I can say I thoroughly enjoyed the plot of this book.

It gave me an overall reminiscence of Inuyasha, and not only because of all that Japanese stuff. The structure of the story made me think, this could easily be broken up into short episodes. Something happens and is then resolved, all along the course of our long term journey. This made for excellent pacing for taking breaks as I progressed through the story.

One thing that sort of irked me was how much repetitiveness was written in. Some feelings/reactions/decisions were overly explained and brought up multiple times. This added unnecessary length to a decently long story.

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The World Building

This book is flush with Japanese culture, setting, and even language. For the common reader this should help immerse the them into the story, as after each instance an explanation or definition is given, providing full understanding. For me, with my already researched knowledge it made the story feel like it dragged a little bit. I think it was just because it was all stuff I already knew about.

Another thing I found odd was how much the act of seppuku was thrown out into the conversation so casually. The characters made it seem like the smallest shame would enact the ritual, including the  mentioning it for the Emperor, who wouldn’t necessarily follow bushido because he is in a different class than samarai.

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The Characters

I loved Yumeko. She was cute, naive, and hopeful. She was the type of endearing character that you want to root for. I really liked that Tatsumi was fighting with a literal inner demon and that he wasn’t a jerk because he was a tough samarai, but because of the emotions that connecting with people could produce and therefore giving the demon access to him.

There was one particular character that was the type to always have a comment, usually sarcastic. This character drove me nuuuuttts. His constant yammering really didn’t add anything to the story. I get developing himself as a sarcastic character. But whenever there was a conversation there was this added lightness that basically made a joke out of everything. It definitely took away from the solemnity of their situations.

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The Soundtrack

YUI –  Tomorrow’s Way

 

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Bullet Journal 2018 Week 40 Spread

This last week went by way too fast. Does anyone feel like the end of the year goes way faster than the beginning? I’m currently past due on two arcs, and just can’t find the time or drive to finish them. I did enlist in a new personal rule of not requesting ARC’s unless they were already on my TBR list. Hopefully I don’t run into this dilemma again as time progresses and I clear up my list.

Week 40

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Guess where I am going this weekend? My (and Rae’s!) birthday is on the 16th so I am heading out of town, off to Portland, OR. So the days on the left side are the days I will be home in Washington, days on the right side are for my days away in Oregon. I didn’t realize till after that they ended up basically being empty boxes…so I’m not exactly sure what I will be putting in there. Any ideas?

I used a tongue depressor to help make the rounded corners of my boxes. I tell you what though, it took SO much more time. It is a nice change from the sharp corners I normally have, but I am not sure how often I really want to do something like this. I try to be creative, but at the same time make my spread unique and have at least a little bit of character. This is where a stencil might come in handy.

I’m Curious  \ ^_^ /

Do you like my new spread? Do you use your BuJo daily? Have any fun bujo hacks? Who do you like to follow on Instagram? What types of tools do you use?