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Showing posts from 2021

21 (Almost) Best Books of 2021

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Hello, everybody! It's been a while since I've checked in with all of you. I might write a longer chatty post for New Year's Day, but I wanted to finish everything 2021 related before stepping into the new year, so I had to throw together my favorite books of 2021 rather fast.  2021 had the most changes for my reading life since I was 13 as I started exploring a new age category of books while also coming back to my YA roots. As with every year I get older, I also read less, which is discouraging. I barely read at all during my first LA semester, so I only managed to read 40 books this year (when I was aiming for 50). I started to wonder if I even liked reading anymore, but since I've been home, I've been reading a ton, so I've proven to myself it's really a time issue more than anything.  I started bullet journaling in 2021, and this book comes from one of those spreads. I aimed to write down 21 favorite books of 2021, and I didn't quite make it. Having

Margot Mertz Takes It Down by Carrie McCrossen & Ian McWethy: YA Book Review

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Margot Mertz Takes It Down  by Carrie McCrossen & Ian McWethy Overview: Margot likes to make money on the side by putting her hacking skills (both through her computer and her social charm) to the test to clean up internet errors for her classmates (and sometimes teachers and other adults). She finds it interesting, and it's quickly filling back up her college fund her uncle squandered away. This time, though, Margot may have bitten off more than she can chew. Overall: 5 Characters: 5  Margot is great. She has a witty, dry sense of humor and is super intelligent. She's my favorite kind of lead character that doesn't take life too seriously while simultaneously taking life way too seriously. She's a bit of a loner, standoffish, and completely capable on her own - even though that's probably not best for her. Once she's zoned in on a goal, she'll go to any lengths to achieve it, which predictably leads her astray. She does have super supportive, chill pare

Fiction Book Review: Daisy Jones & the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid

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Daisy Jones & the Six  by Taylor Jenkins Reid  Overview: The Six was a band started by two brothers that eventually grew to include another pair of brothers, a drummer, and a keyboardist. And together, led by Billy Dunne, they were good. Good enough to get enough attention to be flown out to LA to sign to a record label.  Daisy Jones was born into the glamorous Hollywood life but to distant, self absorbed parents. She soaked up the world of the Sunset Strip, though, and all the drugs and rock 'n roll that came with it. Both effortlessly beautiful and vocally talented, she easily scored a recording contract, but she only really wanted the one thing that didn't come perfectly naturally - to be a revered songwriter. Still, Daisy Jones was good too.  But then Runner Records, who had signed both the Six and Daisy Jones, made them great when they threw both acts on a billing together. And Daisy Jones & the Six was born, ready to, as most icons do, rise fast and flame out earl

Book Review: My Year of Rest and Relaxation by Ottessa Moshfegh

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My Year of Rest and Relaxation  by Ottessa Moshfegh TW: drug use, mentions of suicide/self harm, bulimia Overview: While we don't know the protagonist's name, nothing in her inner world is off limits as Moshfegh probes through the life of a grief stricken, isolated young woman in New York City at the end of the year 2000. After graduating from Columbia, the protagonist wanders through life halfheartedly working in an art gallery, seeing a man who is generally disinterested in her, and only offered companionship by a best friend she hardly likes. As her life slowly spirals downwards, she starts coasting on her inheritance from her parents' estate and decides to employ a psychiatrist with shaky morals to give her enough drugs to sleep through the next year of her life. Maybe if she can finally, truly rest, she'll be able to recalibrate her life on the other side into something far better than the current drudgery. Overall: 3.5 Characters: 4 The main character is classical

An Epic 11 Book Library Haul: Fiction, Romance, YA, and Fantasy

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I am reunited with my favorite library in the world, and it feels incredible! I haven't even been home 24 hours, and I've already made a library run. After not finishing a single book in all of November (which was very upsetting) in the midst of midterms blending into finals, I'm excited to use my newfound free time to read as much as possible and hopefully fall back in love with reading. I've been really struggling with knowing what to read as I've felt caught between YA and literary fiction/romance. I tried to pick up a sampling of different books from the library so I could be picky with what I actually finished. I'm super excited cause a lot of these books have been on my TBR a super long time.  So here's the 11 books I Brough home with me on my first library trip. Fiction Less by Andrew Sean Greer When I worked at a bookstore, this one was always at the front of our fiction displays, and I always wondered about it, but I never bothered to pick it up. It

Beautiful World, Where Are You by Sally Rooney Book Review

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Beautiful World, Where Are You  by Sally Rooney Overall: 3 Sally Rooney's return is marked by a major shift in style. I've never been a huge fan of Rooney's books, but I find myself continually picking them up none the less. Her breakthrough book, Normal People , and her debut,  Conversations With Friends ,  (currently becoming a mini series ) shared many common style threads that are totally absent in her latest novel, Beautiful World Where Are You,  that came after a 3 year break.  While I'd struggled with Rooney's books being a bit flat on the character development front, they'd always been super quick reads, especially as far as books in the literary fiction genre go. I imagine that's what helped stoke the popularity of her books.  This time, Rooney slows it down and truly sinks into the worlds of four characters, from two points of view, taking her time to allow the audience to fully explore their minds. Split between two estranged friends' stories,

What's on My October TBR? Sally Rooney, Axie Oh, Taylor Jenkins Reid, and More!

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Considering it's already October 12 when I'm posting this, I am definitely coming to terms with the fact that I'm not going to get through all of these books before the month is over. Maybe if I spend all of fall break reading nonstop I'll make it, but I'm not holding my breath. Still, I figured I'd share the books that I'm hoping to get through this October to possibly inspire you to pick up a new book or two sometime this month. The Bookshop.org links noted below are affiliate links. That means that a purchase made through this link will directly go towards supporting the blog! At no extra cost to you, the blog will get a small percentage of the sale. It is a great way to support the blog and indie bookstores at the same time! Beautiful World, Where Are You by Sally Rooney  Get It On Bookshop! I started reading the new Sally Rooney book a few days ago without having really absorbed the title or read the summary at all. I guess that shows you what name reco

A New Chapter for Reading, Writing, and Me

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As you might have noticed, in the last week, Reading, Writing, and Me has gone through a bit of a rebrand. After nearly five years, it started to feel like some major changes were needed. Both in mission statement and design, the choices I made at 14 no longer align with the current version of me that exists at 18. While, in a way, it was as simple as tweaking my Blogger template and rewriting some policy pages, this new chapter for the blog has unearthed many feelings about growing up and realizing just how much I've changed as a person over the last few years.  I'd been considering a shift for the blog since this past summer. I'd played around with changing the design and giving it an update away from the signature hot pink. Every time I went to change it, though, I got nervous about what changing something that felt so foundational to the blog would do. Hot pink has always been one of my favorite colors (I had a scarily pink room when I was around 8), and I loved that I