Weekly Update

In case you missed it, here are this week’s blog posts:

Tags this week:

I’ve been reading:

Recently acquired:

  • Entangled Teen mailed me a physical copy of Ask Me Anything! It was such a surprise! ❤

5 things this week:

This week has kind of flown by in a blur after a very exciting weekend. Some things that happened since the last Weekly Update are…

  • Riding the world’s tallest rollercoaster! (And somehow surviving it.) The comic below is actually me and my boyfriend before and after. I am, of course, the one saying, “This seems genuinely unwise.”
View this post on Instagram

m o r t a l s

A post shared by Strange Planet (@nathanwpylestrangeplanet) on

  • Going to my friend’s son’s birthday party! I unexpectedly got to play with a very cute puppy while we were there.
his name is Oliver
  • Watching The Conjuring, which actually, literally gave me nightmares. (Yikes.)
  • Baking a gluten-free carrot cake for my manager!
  • MEETING BROODS (WHAT?!) and making a new friend at the concert!

The rest of the week was pretty boring and mostly consisted of my cat screaming at me for letting my boyfriend leave.

Song of the week:

DID YOU KNOW TAYLOR SWIFT RELEASED A NEW SONG?!?


How was your week? What’s the best thing you read or listened to? Anything interesting happening in your life? Let’s talk in the comments!

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Tag: Song Request Book Tag (Take 3)

The song request book tag is one of my all-time favorites, and I was so excited to see that I’d been tagged by Consu! Thank you! ❤


RULES:

  • Thank and link back to tagger.
  • Credit to Daniel @ Page to Page
  • Listen to tagger’s song requests! After you’re done listening to the three songs the person who tagged you has chosen, choose a book that you think best goes along with that song and tell us why you chose it!
  • Request 3 songs of your own! Give any three songs (and your corresponding book choices that think go well with said song) you want for your taggers to listen and respond to!
  • Tag 5 people!

Consu’s requests

1. “To Noise Making (Sing)” by Hozier

Who could ask you
Be unbroken or be brave again?
Or, honey, hope even on this side of the grave again
And who could ask you to be sound or to feel saved again?
But stick around until you hear that music play again

I think that August was my favorite character in Famous in a Small Town, and the bridge of this song reminds me of him so much! August has been through a lot and I just want to give him a hug.

2. “Mourning in the Streets of Amerika” by Rise Against

With a teleprompter in our faces
Yeah, we don’t even know what we’re saying
Car that’s slowly crashing
And we can’t look away
Parading to the edge of the cliff now
We’re trying to figure out how to get down
While the night is fast approaching
Would we even recognize our former lives in this artificial light?

My first nonfiction choice for this tag! I decided to go with Fantasyland because it’s about how people will believe anything they’re told.

3. “No One Mourns the Wicked” from Wicked

Yes, goodness knows
The Wicked’s lives are lonely
Goodness knows
The Wicked cry alone
Nothing grows for the wicked
They reap only what they’ve sown

Winter is all about working to finally defeat Levana after this whole series of her doing horrible things, so it seems pretty fitting for this song about the death of the Wicked Witch of the West.


My requests

1. “Too Proud” by Broods

And then I start to get nervous
What if I never resurface?
No one can hear me down here
The pressure gets worse the further I fall
The dimmer the light, the lower I go
And I’m getting cold

Sorry (but not really) for not shutting up about Broods, but I was just at their concert and it was amazing. I was thinking about Ariel in You Asked for Perfect while I was driving home from work today, because apparently that’s a thing I do now, and this isn’t the song I was originally going to put it with, but it’s almost perfect. Ariel is drowning in everything he needs to do, but he won’t ask for help because he doesn’t want anyone to know that he’s not perfect.

2. “Strangers” by Sigrid

Like strangers, perfect pretenders
We’re falling head over heels
For something that ain’t real
It could never be us, eh
Just you and I

It’s so hard to talk about the plot of Alex, Approximately without spoiling the whole thing, but basically it’s about two people who meet online and kind of fall for each other while talking about movies. But throughout all of that, there’s this question of whether they should meet in person or not because what if it’s not the same?

3. “Vindicated” by Dashboard Confessional

Vindicated, I am selfish, I am wrong
I am right, I swear I’m right
Swear I knew it all along
And I am flawed
But I am cleaning up so well
I am seeing in me now
The things you swore you saw yourself

I was just talking with my boyfriend the other day about how I was really into Dashboard Confessional during my peak emo stage. I think “Vindicated” could really fit with anything that has a coming of age theme. I think it especially fits with The Way You Make Me Feel because that book really focuses on Clara learning to think of someone other than herself and analyzing decisions she’s made and learning to live with the consequences and become a better person.


I’m tagging…

JessRobinHannahKensleyNatalie


No pressure if you don’t want to do the tag (or if you’ve already done it), and please feel free to do it even if I didn’t tag you! What do you think of my song and book choices? Let’s talk in the comments!

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ARC review: Ask Me Anything by Molly E. Lee

Ask Me Anything by Molly E. Lee
Rating: ★★★☆☆
Links: Amazon • TBD • Goodreads
Publication Date: May 7, 2019
Source: ARC via Netgalley

I should’ve kept my mouth shut.

But Wilmont Academy’s been living in the Dark Ages when it comes to sex ed, and someone had to take matters into her own hands. Well, I’m a kick-ass coder, so I created a totally anonymous, totally untraceable blog where teens can come to get real, honest, nothing-is-off-limits sex advice.

And holy hell, the site went viral—and we’re talking way beyond Wilmont—overnight. Who knew this town was so hard up?

Except now the school administration is trying to shut me down, and they’ve forced Dean—my coding crush, aka the hottest guy in school—to try to uncover who I am. If he discovers my secret, I’ll lose him forever. And thousands of teens who need real advice won’t have anyone to turn to.

Ask me anything…except how to make things right.

A little over a month ago, I got an email from Entangled asking me if I wanted to share an excerpt of Ask Me Anything. A sex-positive YA book that features an awesome female hacker? SIGN ME UP. I shared that excerpt, which only made me more excited to read this book.

For the first half of the book or so, I was sure this was going to be a four- or even five-star read. I loved Amber and her friends. I loved Dean and his sister. I loved the Code Club and the whole idea of the competition between Amber and Dean. I loved the idea of the Ask Me Anything blog and I loved that the book gave reasonable, realistic advice in the form of blog posts. Simply put, I loved everything.

The second half, though? It’s not like it was bad or anything. It just wasn’t as good. Amber and Dean were cute together, but a few things happen that felt entirely unrealistic. Principal Tanner was a ridiculous character, completely over-the-top, and almost a caricature of a villain. There are also two points that I can’t really discuss without spoilers, so click below for that.

These are spoilers!Alright, so the first thing I want to talk about is Amber and Dean’s first time. In general, this book is pretty realistic when it comes to sex. I expected Amber and Dean’s first time to be at least semi-realistic. I did not expect it to be complete and utter perfection, where Dean knows exactly how to make Amber “fly apart” (or whatever euphemism the author used for having an orgasm) despite it being both of their first times.

The second thing I want to address is Tessa’s pregnancy. As I said, the majority of the book is pretty realistic. Tessa’s pregnancy, though, felt contrived, almost like something out of a bad educational film they’d have made us watch in Catholic high school health class. (That’s right, kids, have sex and you’ll get pregnant, there’s no way around it.) It seemed to add a lot of unnecessary drama without really adding to the plot, other than giving Amber and Dean an excuse to have an argument.


Overall, though, I really enjoyed this book. I think it’s timely and important and I wish something like it would have existed when I was a teenager.

Quick note: This book contains many descriptions of sexual assault. If that’s something you’re sensitive to, know that it’s handled well, but it’s still a definite presence and a fairly large part of the story.

#mm19: crack the case


Have you read Ask Me Anything? Do you know of any similar books?Let’s talk in the comments!

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Tag: The Liebster Award (Take 7)

I love doing these Q&A kind of tags, so I was really happy to see that I’d been nominated by Susan for another round of The Liebster Award! Then, to make things even better, I was nominated a couple days later by Daniel! Thank you both! ❤

If you want to see the previous versions of this award, you can click here: 1 • 2 • 3 • 4 • 56


The Liebster Award Rules

  1. Acknowledge the blog that gave it to you and display the award
  2. Answer 11 questions that the blogger gives you
  3. Give 11 random facts about yourself
  4. Nominate 11 blogs and notify them of their nomination
  5. Give these blogs 11 questions to answer

11 random facts about me:

  1. The socks I’m wearing right now have cats and books on them (my two favorite things) and they were a gift from my boyfriend. ❤
  2. I have the most affectionate cat I’ve ever met. I chose her from the Humane Society (or, really, she chose me) when she jumped on my shoulders as soon as I walked in the room. Fifteen years later, she still loves to sit on people’s shoulders.
  3. I’m going to a bunch of concerts this year and I’m really excited about it! Coming up in the next couple months are twenty one pilots and Billie Eilish, and then I’ll also be seeing Sigrid this fall. I’m really hoping for a summer Bleachers show to be announced, too.
  4. I hate the taste of coconut but love the scent of it.
  5. I recently rode the world’s tallest rollercoaster and lived to tell the tale.
  6. I’m listening to What Would You Do by Bastille right now.
  7. Speaking of songs, every morning my best friend and I text each other the first song we heard when we woke up. Today my song was Buddy Holly by Weezer.
  8. My go-to music when I need to cheer up is really old Taylor Swift songs. I can’t even listen to Our Song or Mary’s Song without smiling.
  9. I’ve reached the point in my life where I’m just widely known as a crazy cat lady, so my boss will come up to me in the middle of the day and ask me for advice about his kitten and my coworker will send me pictures of every cat she crosses paths with.
  10. I’ve never been a big soda fan, but I really love drinking seltzer.
  11. Just within my line of sight right now are 75 books that I have to read.

11 questions from Susan:

Your favorite book/comic turned movie/TV show?

It’s pretty rare for me to both read and watch something, so let’s see… The most recent book I’ve read that’s been turned into a TV show was You. I absolutely loved that book even if it completely creeped me out. I haven’t seen the show, though.

What book /comic you want turned into a movie or tv show (that hasn’t already been announced as being in production)?

I would love to see The Hating Game turned into a movie, but I’d also be terrified that they’d ruin it.

What character do you most love to hate/hate to love?

I loved to hate Ambrose from The Name of the Wind!

Have you ever read a book where the bad guys win at the end (and I don’t mean if you are in the second book of a trilogy- they would have to win at the end of the trilogy or a stand-alone)? I ask because I have, and it is so rare and so remarkably brave for an author to do, in my opinion. I’d love to know if any are out there I don’t know about.

I don’t think so!

What authors have you tried and tried to read but decided just aren’t for you?

The one that I can think of off the top of my head is Penny Reid. I did enjoy one of her books, but none of the others. I think that’s more a case of “it’s not you, it’s me.”

Favorite Indie bookstores that everyone should visit (doesn’t have to be where you live- maybe you found them on vacation).

Two lesser-known bookstores that I really enjoy in NJ are Labyrinth Books in Princeton (I love their final copies sale section and the used books downstairs) and Booktrader in Hamilton (it’s so overwhelming but in a good way).

What was your “homerun book” aka… the book that hooked you into being a life long reader?

Oh, I’m not sure! My grandma used to read me a ton of Golden Books when I was really little, and that got me started on my love of books. I don’t think there was one single book that started it all.

Who is your reading companion (who is usually, if anyone/anything by your side when you read)?

This little lady. 🙂

What book OR TV show have you read/rewatched the most?

It’s pretty rare that I re-read books, but I have re-read Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret a few times. The TV show I’ve seen most is probably Freaks and Geeks since I’ve forced multiple people to watch the whole thing with me.

What book have you recommended the most to others?

Without a doubt, The Hating Game.

What book do you inwardly roll your eyes at when others say it is their favorite book?

I try really hard not to do this! I don’t like judging people based on their reading preferences. That said… probably Fifty Shades of Grey. I only made it through the first few chapters of this book (though I think a hate-read might be interesting) and I can just tell you that there’s much better-written erotica out there.


11 questions from Daniel:

Cake or non-cake donut?

For a normal breakfast donut, I’ll go with non-cake. But if I want more of an indulgence, there’s nothing better than a Brooklyn Blackout cake donut from the Doughnut Plant in Brooklyn.

What is you preferred milk type (two percent, whole, almond)?

I don’t really drink a lot of milk aside from half and half in my coffee, but if I’m getting something to put on cereal, I like unsweetened vanilla almond milk.

What’s the last book you checked out from the library?

Wordcrime by John Olsson! I got that and the audiobook of Daisy Jones & the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid on the same day.

Have you ever met anyone famous?

I’ve never met anyone who’s, like, Taylor Swift-level famous. But I did meet Broods last weekend and that was probably one of the most exciting things that’s ever happened to me.

What’s the last thing you’ve cooked or baked from scratch?

I believe that would be the pot pie that my boyfriend and I made for Easter. If we’re talking something that I alone made from scratch… I think that’s chicken and dumpling soup.

Biscuits or bagels?

Give me a bagel any day.

baby boi or BIG BOI? (refer to and include one above picture)

This is the hardest question I’ve ever been asked in my life, but I think I have to go with baby boi. He was just so tiny!!

If you could have dinner with one author that’s alive, who would it be?

Jenn Bennett! She seems so nice.

What is your most anticipated release of the year?

DARKDAWN!!!

What’s been your most disappointing read this year, so far?

Probably The Umbrella Academy. It was so hyped and I just didn’t enjoy it at all.

What was the last song you listened to?


My nominations:

SavannahEricaAmbiHeatherCateOn the BookpageAlexLady BShylaMegsSofii


My questions for you:

  1. What’s the best book you’ve read so far this year?
  2. Which book that you already own are you most looking forward to reading?
  3. Which upcoming release are you most excited about?
  4. What’s your favorite TV show right now?
  5. What’s the last movie you watched and how was it?
  6. Are there any tropes that you just can’t resist?
  7. If you could travel anywhere right now, where would you go?
  8. What’s your favorite dessert?
  9. Do you have any pets? If so, please feel free to share pictures!
  10. What kind of job could you never do?
  11. Coffee or tea, and how do you take it?

Please feel free to do this tag even if I didn’t nominate you! I’d love to see your answers! ❤ What’s the last thing you cooked or baked from scratch? Who is your reading companion? Let’s talk in the comments!

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ABC Book Challenge ✰ Numbers

I’ve seen this ABC Book Challenge on a lot of different blogs, but most recently Thrice Read. Doing only A-Z meant that I missed some books that I’ve loved, so here are the numbers!


✰ MEMORABLE (FOUR- AND FIVE-STAR) BOOKS STARTING WITH A NUMBER ✰


✰ BOOKS ON MY TBR STARTING WITH A NUMBER ✰

I don’t have any books on my TBR that start with a number, but please feel free to recommend some to me!


Do you agree or disagree with my favorites? Can you recommend any books that start with a number? Let’s talk in the comments!

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