The Votes Are In!

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So it’s that time of the week again! This time, I thought I would make this announcement a little bit more fun and interactive. I asked you all to vote either through my Twitter or Instagram on what my next classic read should be, and I must say I am surprised and feel very grateful that so many (more) of you voted in this last poll.

A huge thank you to all of you for supporting the content of this post! For without your votes, this wouldn’t  be possible. You are all amazing humans who support this (probably selfish) endeavor of mine to be the best reader & writer I can be. And for that, I want to thank all of you for being so awesome! 🙂

Anyway, the news you are all waiting for. This race was a close one. I didn’t expect certain people to vote the way they did, but I still think its cool to see where everyone else’s interests in books lie also. So that was also kind of fun. Between Twitter & Instagram there were 13 votes!

And the winner is…

The votes were 8-6 in favor of Mr. Holmes here. But for those of you who voted for 1984, fear not. It’s the next on my list for my TBT Classic Edition. 🙂

As for those of you on Team Holmes, you’ll get to read my review for this one in the next couple of weeks!

So what is everyone reading out there? Any of you other bookworms have classics on your TBR? Let me know (if you want, of course)!

Until next time!

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Review: Emma in the Night

(Side note: I updated my star rating key, so check the link above for full explanation of what each rating means! :))

Emma in the Night is truly twisted & thrilling read! It’s hard to give this one a long review without giving too much away. Wendy Walker sets up some things pretty early on, but you don’t exactly know when things are going to happen and the full extent to which they occur. She teases the nature of some characters, so you have an idea of what is going to happen, but there were still a couple of twists.

In spite of knowing or being able to anticipate some of the plot twists, I really liked both narrators. Cass & Dr. Winter were great characters, both who kind of understood one another’s psychology without ever having to really talk about it. This bond was fascinating as were the descriptions of narcissistic personality disorder.

A lot of what happens is based on this disorder, and the author does a good job of commenting on it whilst educating the reader more about. As someone who suffers from mental illness, this was kind of fascinating to me.

I think with a psychological thriller like this, it’s important to care about the characters and to also be urged to read on by the author. Walker creates empathetic characters and drives the reader to move forward. I would highly recommend this one.

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Stop by on Thursday, where I will announce my next Throwback Thursday Classic, which you guys will vote for! Check out your choices here, and either DM me via Twitter or cast your vote on my Insta story! I’ll reveal the book with the most votes on Thursday!

Until next time bookworms!

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#whatsinthebox18 Wrap Up! And Coming Reads!

That’s all folks!

I have completed the #whatsinthebox18 week long readathon. It was such a fun readathon, and I really did challenge myself to read more in a week than I normally would.

The original goal was 4 reads, and I am pleased to announce that I read 3.5 books! I definitely swapped out a monster length book for a shorter, more manageable one for my last reading sprint. (I will be discussing each of these reads in my live wrap up on Instagram that will take place in approximately 30 minutes.)

I definitely will participate in this readathon again. And hopefully by then I will have a couple more connections in the #bookstagram community that I will feel more comfortable in participating in the giveaway events (I felt weird just ‘making new friends,’ and then tagging them tbh).

But no complaints on not wining anything, really. I went into this with the mindset of wanting to finish some BOTM books that have been sorely neglected, and I did just that! I also wanted to meet and connect with some more people in the #bookstagram community, and I was successful in that also.

So all in all, it was a great experience! So if you’re looking to break into the bookish community on Instagram, or just want another week long readathon, participate in this one!

Seriously, wherethereadergrows & book.happy were AMAZINGLY generous hosts for this readathon. They were super active, and encouraging to everyone, even to a newb like me. And you don’t always have that in readathons, so I really felt welcomed in and included. Thank you for all your hard work ladies!

So now that I have finished up the following reads, what is next for reorganized-reading? Well, I am going to be doing another Best Friend Book Club read with my Belgian Bestie. A classic that has been on both of our TBR’s forever: The Book Thief!

I know, how behind the times are we on this one? It came out ages ago, right? But anyway, we’re both really excited to have another read to experience with one another. And also, there will be two giveaways this time! One when we meet the halfway mark, and the other when we sprint to the end. Stay tuned for more details on my Twitter & Instagram accounts!

And I will also be announcing my last Throwback Thursday Classic this coming Thursday, but I need your help in deciding which read to go with! Stay tuned as I will announce via Twitter & Instagram two options for you to choose from.

Thanks again to everyone who has made my reading experience so enjoyable thus far! I really am grateful to have had the chance to connect with some amazing individuals!

Until next time bookworms!

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#whatsinthebox18 Readathon Update!

Saturday afternoon I was perusing bookish hashtags on Instagram for inspiration & to find other awesome book bloggers out there when I happened upon this reading challenge. And of course, me not really having any major plans this weekend (except for a trip to the dog park, some catch up cleaning, groceries, & mass, you know my usual stuff), I thought why not join in?

And here we are on Tuesday, halfway(ish) through the readathon, so I figured I would make a post about my experience with this readathon so far.

Some of you must be wondering, what is #whatsinthebox18?

It’s a week long readathon (from April 14-April 21) created by wherethereadergrows & book.happy, intended to knock off those books that arrive through any monthly subscriptions you might have. And it looks like most (if not all) of the giveaways included in this readathon are either a subscription box from various providers, or a book from a subscription box. Oh, and they are everyday giveaways so if you’re into that it is really fun!

I haven’t really participated in the giveaways, with the exception of doing the photo challenges. But those are really just so I can practice taking pictures as my photo skills are weak af. I also thought doing this readathon would be a fun way to kind of reach out to the bookstagram community, and probably most importantly, knock off some of my BOTM books that have pretty much taken over my TBR shelf.

Seriously it’s bad how behind I am with reading these books. (I think I have 2 unread from 2016 still, and something like a dozen between 2017-2018. Yikes, right?) In fact I’m considering temporarily halting my subscription in June, just so I can buckle down and catch up. I’m sure my bank account & my hubster would love if I did that, but I just don’t know if I can fully commit to it because I love discovering new books through the monthly selections! If you’re reading this, sorry babe!

Anyway, now that you know a little bit about the #whatsinthebox18 readathon, let’s talk personal progress. I feel pretty good about my progress so far for this readathon.

So far, I read two books. The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaimen, which was a random read that I started before discovering #whatsinthebox18. And then a selection from my BOTM TBR shelf, The Glass Castle, by Jeanette Walls. Below you can see my star ratings & favorite quotes from them. 

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I also started reading another one of my BOTM books from last year The Sisters Chase by Sarah Healy. It’s started out kind of slow, but definitely holds an air of mystery that makes me want to know more. You aren’t really sure exactly what is going on with the protagonist, Mary, although I feel like it might be something really sinister based on the clues we’ve been provided. And then I have another read that I am targeting to finish, Pachinko by Min Jin Lee. I love learning about different cultures, particularly from a historical viewpoint, and also if they come into contact with another conflicting culture. That whole idea is just fascinating to me and always makes for a rich read, so I have high hopes for this one.

And beyond these four, I don’t really see myself finding time to start another one. But hey, stranger things have happened 😉

As far as reviews of these books goes, I chose to do mini-reviews since I saw mostly everyone was updating their progress on Instagram. I figured I would be easier to give quick snapshots of my thoughts there, but I also wanted to track my progress over here, and talk a little bit about this fun & exciting readathon. I will probably also do a wrap up next Sunday here on my overall experience/progress, so stay tuned.

Anyone else do a subscription book box? Any others to recommend aside from BOTM? Do you have BOTM? What are your feelings about it? Let me know!

Until next time, bookworms!

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Bullet Journal Update & Review of The Secret Garden!

Another book finished this week, wow! Who am I, and where is the Lynn who hardly has time for reading & this blog?!

Anyway, I am really excited about this book because it was my first ever Throwback Thursday: Classic Edition, book I finished! So yay!

I am also really excited about this post because I have kind of made some updates to how I’m displaying my books read in my bullet journal. And so I wanted to take a minute to show you all what I’ve done before jumping into my review of The Secret Garden.

So a couple of months ago, I shared how I would be tracking my reading progress for the year with you in this post. But since then, I kind of changed my thought process on how I would keep track of EVERYTHING I was doing. So I ended up enhancing my “Books of 2018,” page a little bit. And voila!

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As you can see I have also included the Amazon logo, to keep track of my Amazon reviews I do. This also helps with points for the BeatTheBacklist Challenge.

And then I took it one step further, and merged my featured quotes page along with my current reads page.

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So I might alternate between providing my favorite quote here in written form, or in some kind of fashion in my BuJo. I haven’t really decided on a set format at this point in time. I think I will just kind of go with the flow with this like I have done so, so far.

And yes, I know these are two very minor things. But I wanted to share them with you, especially those of you who are interested in BuJo related content. 🙂

And now, onto the review. Not really spoilerish, but placing beneath a cut for length sake.

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Review: The Fiery Cross

“When the day shall come, that we do part,” he said softly, and turned to look at me, “if my last words are not ‘I love you’—ye’ll ken it was because I didna have time.”

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For fans of the Outlander series, Jamie & Claire are at it again. Taking our breaths away with the beauty of their words in a poignant manner that doesn’t at all feel cheesy.

Their relationship has literally stood the test of time, even if we always aren’t sure just how much time passes in these books due to the infrequent pacing. And they have not only a love that is one of kind, but a mutual respect and friendship between one another that others for this time period wouldn’t have.

But enough gushing about this crazily strong power couple. Onto the actual content of this book.

So anyone who picks up this book is undoubtedly well invested in this series. At 1,000+ pages a novel, you kind of have to be once you reach the fifth book. Needless to say, this book was more or less filler than anything else to me.

Diana Gabaldon, or DG as I affectionately refer to her, had so much action, suspense & adventure packed into novels 1-4. This one had some elements of action, but the drama was more domestic than anything else.

And I suppose it could be argued that we needed a book like this at this stage in the series. The four main characters really haven’t had an opportunity to live together (that we have seen at least), so it kind of made sense that this one showed the mundane happenings of everyday life.

Even so, did we really need 1443 pages of it? I don’t think so. I know she is big on the details. But come on, there were at least 100 pages where she described Breanna’s love for her child through the way her breasts felt.

Like it’s fine to do it a couple of times to emphasis her bond with him, but this was so excessive to me that it literally became an inside joke between Emma & I. There are other ways to explore feeling and emotion between characters. I mean, she finds new & exciting ways to keep us engaged with Jamie/Claire, and they have been prominently attending to their maternal duties for approximately 5,000 pages. You would think she could do the same with a mother & her child.

That wasn’t the only thing that kind of set my teeth on edge.  Like Fergus and Marsali are Jamie’s adoptive children, and that part of the family were hardly mentioned throughout this narrative. I get that they are more minor characters and we needed the Jamie/Roger scenes in order to establish their importance because up until this point they haven’t interacted a whole lot. But still! Fergus & Marsali have a uniqueness to them that kind of mirrors Jamie & Claire. Whereas, Breanna & Roger’s scenes just feel awkward for me.

I suppose my personal bias and preference of characters really played a role in this review as well.  But you can’t connect with every single character you’re presented with, especially in an epic length series like this one.

In the end, I gave this 3 stars because I felt it was fair. DG clearly put a lot of painstaking details into this novel, and reveals that some seemingly insignificant ones you read earlier and in book four, really are significant. She also leaves a couple of loose ends to keep you guessing where the major conflict in book six will end up.

All in all, you need to approach this series with the mindset that there are going to be books that you enjoy more than others. I am of the belief that if you find a character or two that you love, and want to see where they end up, that you should try to stick to a series until the end. So that is what I think I will be doing with this series.

Also, it’s become a mutual interest for my Belgian bestie & myself. And it’s fun to discuss, and to also vent your frustrations to someone who is reading alongside you. I don’t know that I would have been able to forge ahead as quickly as I did with this book if it wasn’t for me having a buddy to do this with. So for those slow readers out there, I would vote you pair up with a buddy who can help support you through this one.

In terms of ranking the Outlander Books, below is mine, and you can deduce from it where I saw this one. (Side note: I had a bit of a laugh because it is almost in chronological order hah).

  1. Outlander
  2. Voyager
  3. Dragonfly in Amber
  4. Drums of Autumn
  5. The Fiery Cross

How does your ranking of the first 5 books compare? Am I totally off base with my thoughts and feelings? 

Until next time bookworms! Happy reading adventures!

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Coming Up: A review of The Secret Garden 🙂

Best Friend Book Club Giveaway!

The monster book is FINALLY complete! This morning I closed my exceptionally worn out copy of The Fiery Cross by Diana Gabaldon and sipped my second cup of coffee triumphantly.

Triumphantly because this read has taken me the better part of two months and was a bit tedious to get through. TheFieryCross

Not so triumphantly because I lost a reading competition to my Belgian bestie. But, if I was going to lose to anybody it would be her.

I know I have teased that my Belgian bestie and I were reading a monster of a book together, and that I also teased that we started a best friend book club. But I don’t know if I actually went into detail of the experience. I think I intended to explain this in another post, but never got around to it. 

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