Literacy Life Map

Books have always been a major part of my life. My earliest memories are of my mom reading to my twin brother and I or her telling us stories. Because of that my love of reading grew and I became the book obsessed adult I am today. Currently I have 798 books in my tiny apartment, and that number has changed because I have bought more books since the last time I counted. So I have a lot of books I could put on this map of 10, but I'm just going to pick the ones that stand out the most to me.

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1. Junie B. Jones by Barbara Park
  Just about everyone is familiar with Junie B. Jones. Junie B. is pretty much a classic for all first graders. I remember every night sitting in bed with my mom and reading out loud to her. It was one of my favorite things to do and I loved that my mom made that a priority every night.

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2. When Pigs Fly by June Rae Wood 
When Pigs Fly was another book my mom and I read together, usually on Friday nights when my brother was at friends houses. This book deals with downs syndrome and really opened my eyes at a young age. After my mom and I read the book we loved it so so much that flying pigs have been our thing ever since. We also loved it so much that we gave my grandmother the book to read. This book would always randomly pop into my head from time-to-time and I always wanted to get another copy of it. When my grandmother passed away my freshman year at Tarleton, I ended up getting my original copy back. She had kept it all those years because she loved the book just as much as we had. To me that makes this book even more special and I still have it on my shelf.

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3. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte 
Wuthering Heights is a book that I have read countless times now. It's very dark and creepy, but for some reason I love it. The first time I read this book I was a sophomore in high school. Of course, no one else read the book in my class so the conversation over Wuthering Heights was just between my teacher and I pretty much. This was the first book that really got me into classic literature and started my obsession with the Bronte sisters.

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4. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak 
Another dark book that for some odd reason I love. I did not read this book until about 2 years ago and I fell in love with it. If you have not read The Book Thief, it's about a young german girl during the Holocaust that steals books (duh), but the narrator is death. The book is just one big emotional roller coaster for me, but it's amazing. I already have 3 copies of this book on my shelves and I plan on re reading it a dozen more times.

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5. Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins 
I absolutely love Stephanie Perkins. She is pretty much the queen of YA romance. At least in my opinion she is. Anna and the French Kiss is an absolutely adorable, easy contemporary read. It is kind of part of a series. By that I mean there are two other books that go along with it that share characters and at the end of the last one there is just a big shocker that left me in happy tears. I read this book almost 3 or 4 years ago during a really rough time. It simply just made me happy and gave me all the feels I needed while I read it. I'm the kind of person that reads to escape and this book definitely helped by taking me to Paris and allowing me to live through the main character and fall in love.

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6. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell 
If you know me, you know this book is my life. I am obsessed with Fangirl. When reading this book I felt like Rainbow Rowell was somehow writing it about my own life at the moment, minus the whole cute love story. It's about the struggles of the first year of college and how Cath (our main character) gets through those struggles by writing fanfiction and just being an over all fangirl on the internet. I personally do not write fanfiction, but I used to spend a lot of time reading it. I also struggled a lot my first year of college, still do, and a lot of those struggles were exactly the same as Cath's. This book made me feel less alone, when I felt completely alone at school and made me realize that everyone struggles in college. 

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7. The Selection series by Kiera Cass
The way I describe this series to people is, it's The Hunger Games meets The Bachelor. The Selection is a competition to see who gets to marry the future king and become the future queen of what once was the United States. There's a love triangle, fights, a country at war with itself, murder, beautiful dresses and balls, and pretty much just a little bit of everything. This series is, so far, my all time favorite series that I've ever read and it genuinely did help me when I was feeling pretty down. The characters are hilarious and strong and made me feel like I could do just about anything I set my mind to. 

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8. Stalking Jack The Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco 
I read Stalking Jack The Ripper last year and did a whole blog post on it already. But to save you from going back I'll let you know that it's one of my favorite books. Stalking Jack The Ripper takes you make to Victorian England during the time that Jack the Ripper is prowling the streets. It's a pretty gory read because our main character does work in a morgue with her uncle while trying to figure out who Jack the Ripper is. Throughout the story you think you have the mystery solved, but it all of a sudden takes a complete opposite turn and you're left trying to figure it out all over again.  I'm not one for gory things, says the girl whose favorite book is Wuthering Heights, but this book is worth it. The second book to this series comes out in a few days and I'm so ready to get my hands on it since I've been waiting a year to be with these amazing characters again. 

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9. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen 
Pride and Prejudice is a classic that just about everyone has either read or at least heard of. My mother recommended Pride and Prejudice to me after I read Wuthering Heights in high school. Me, being the brat that I was and still am, refused to read it because my mom wanted me to. But later on in life I picked it up and apologized to her because she was right and I loved every bit of Pride and Prejudice and the wonderful characters Jane Austen created. After that I dove into other Jane Austen novels. So you can say I put my pride away after that (lol sorry had to). 

10. The Bible 
The Bible is the most important book in my life. Almost every morning I wake up early (or if I'm running late I wait until a little later in the day) I read my bible and just enjoy my coffee. I've come to realize that the days I take the time in the mornings to do this, my over all mood for the day is just better and I'm a happier person. 

This or That Tag

Hey guys! I decided to do a little tag that I found on the interwebs because I haven't been posting on here as often as I'd like. So get ready for some tag posts in the near future as well! All photos used are not mine, I found them on pinterest. :) 

Physical book or e-book?
PHYSICAL BOOK. If you know me in real life you know how much I dislike e-books. I have to feel a book, and smell it, and you cannot do that with an e-book. Sometimes I wish I liked e-books just because it's cheaper and faster than going to a book store. But I just can't. 

Audio or book in hand?
Book in hand. My mind wanders too much with audio and I'll start doing everything that I actually need to get done. 

Paperback or hardcover?

 Both! Paperback because it's cheaper, and hardcover because they are so pretty and easier to display on my shelves. 

Adult or Young Adult?

Young Adult.

Series or standalone?

There are soo many good series out there, but I'm gunna have to go with standalone. 
Dog ears or bookmarks?
I'm guilty of dog earring a few books. Please don't kill me. But I do prefer bookmarks. 

Breaking the spine or barely opening the book?

Breaking the spine. I love it. and I know so many people hate this and think it's sooo terrible, but I gotta be able to see the words! 

"Spending this Saturday reading as much of 'Throne of Glass' as possible so I can move on to 'Crown of Midnight' if I decide to continue with this series. (Hopefully I will because I really want to love this series ) If I don't, I will read another Sarah J. Maas book that I just bought, 'A Court of Thorns and Roses' the cover is so pretty  { <a class="pintag searchlink" data-query="%23bookstagram" data-type="hashtag" href="/search/?q=%23bookstagram&rs=hashtag" rel="nofollow" title="#bookstagram search Pinterest">#bookstagram</a> <a class="pintag searchlink" data-query="%23currentlyreading" data-type="hashtag" href="/search/?q=%23currentlyreading&rs=hashtag" rel="nofollow" title="#currentlyreading search Pinterest">#currentlyreading</a> <a class="pintag" href="/explore/books/" title="#books explore Pinterest">#books</a> <a class="pintag searchlink" data-query="%23bookworm" data-type="hashtag" href="/search/?q=%23bookworm&rs=hashtag" rel="nofollow" title="#bookworm search Pinterest">#bookworm</a> <a class="pintag searchlink" data-query="%23ya" data-type="hashtag" href="/search/?q=%23ya&rs=hashtag" rel="nofollow" title="#ya search Pinterest">#ya</a> <a class="pintag searchlink" data-query="%23booknerd" data-type="hashtag" href="/search/?q=%23booknerd&rs=hashtag" rel="nofollow" title="#booknerd search Pinterest">#booknerd</a> <a class="pintag searchlink" data-query="%23throneofglass" data-type="hashtag" href="/search/?q=%23throneofglass&rs=hashtag" rel="nofollow" title="#throneofglass search Pinterest">#throneofglass</a> <a class="pintag searchlink" data-query="%23sarahjmaas" data-type="hashtag" href="/search/?q=%23sarahjmaas&rs=hashtag" rel="nofollow" title="#sarahjmaas search Pinterest">#sarahjmaas</a> <a class="pintag searchlink" data-query="%23epicreads" data-type="hashtag" href="/search/?q=%23epicreads&rs=hashtag" rel="nofollow" title="#epicreads search Pinterest">#epicreads</a> }"
Borrow or buy?
BUY. Once I read a book it becomes a part of me and I cannot give it up. It must stay with me. Along with that I don't lend out books. 
Bookstore or online?
I LOVE bookstores. They just relax me and I can spend hours in a bookstore. But buying books online is a whole lot cheaper, so I usually stick with purchasing the majority of my books online. 

Fiction or non-fiction?

Fiction. I'm just not the biggest fan of non-fiction. 
 Fantasy world or real life issues?
So hard to pick. I read both!! It really just depends on how I'm feeling. 

Kindle, iPad, or other?

Can I say none? I own both an ipad and a nook, and I just don't use them. I've had my ipad for 4 years and can count on one hand how many times I've actually used it. And the same for my nook but I've had it for almost 6 years! 

Monster read or short & sweet?

Depends on my mood. Sometimes you just need a short and sweet book to get through quickly and other times you need a monster read to dive into. 

Starry-eyed romance or full of action?

Romance. BUT my favorite is a book with both! Kicking butt, but also falling in love at the same time? Yes please. Some more Fangirl fanart. I loved this scene. Also if youve read the book, its definitely been one of THOSE weeks. So yeah. This was a fun reprieve. Just want to draw noodley dancing people all the time now.:

Curl up in a Snuggie or bathe in the sun?

Bathe in the sun!!!! I love laying out in the sun with a good book! Especially during the spring time! 
Read the review or decide for yourself?

Decide for myself. But I do watch a lot of reviews on booktube and purchase a lot of my books because of that.

                                                         Zombies or unicorns?
                                    Unicorns because zombies scare the crap out of me. 

Here is the link to the original post I found with this tag! Lauren Reads YA

March Uppercase Unboxing

Hello! Back again with another Uppercase Unboxing, since that seems to be all I do on here now. But HOPEFULLY that will change and I'll start posting more consistently about other things. 

I honestly did not think I was going to get my box this month because I never got a shipping email and I was so so so bummed. UNTIL, I stopped being lazy and went out and checked the mail today and found my box and then ran into my house, hoping my neighbors wouldn't see me 'cause ya girl was a mess this morning. 
This month we got socks!! I LOVE socks and they're Jane Austen socks, sooo that's 100x better than normal socks!! (I'll stop saying socks now) They are super cute and I cannot wait to wear them, but I'm also scared to get them dirty 😂 Next, we got a sticker that says "Book Hoarder" and has the most adorable little dragon on it. I also put it on my laptop as soon as I got done taking the picture of everything together. The last major item in this months box was a really pretty gold foil print of classic books. It so beautiful and it's definitely going to go in a frame. (from Bella Adele Co.) 

So the book for March is... Hunted by Meagan Spooner! And it is a signed copy. This book is absolutely perfect for the month of March because it is a Beauty and the Beast retelling and as just about everyone knows Beauty and the Beast came out this month! (unless you live under a rock, then sorry for the spoiler) Along with the book we got a Hunted bookmark and the usual reading experience bookmark that we get every month with Uppercase. 

I cannot wait to dive into this book soon! Thanks again Uppercase!! 💙

Since I've had a lot of people get really annoyed with me posting my blog on my Facebook, I'm no longer going to be sharing anything on there after this post. If you would like to get notifications when I put up a new blog post go ahead and subscribe. :)  

Review of By Your Side by Kasie West (No Spoilers)

Listening to: How Would You Feel (Paean) by Ed Sheeran 

Yes, I did finally get through my terrible reading slump and finally read a book! 
Side note I literally just finished this book so this might not make sense at all, but I'm going to keep going with it because ow my heart. 

By Your Side by Kasie West. I've honestly had this book on my most anticipated reads of 2017 list and was so excited when I got it that I started reading it right then and there. This is the story of a girl (smash mouth anyone lol sorry) who gets stuck in a library over a 4 day weekend, the story of a girl who learns to accept herself, the story of a girl that struggles with anxiety and depression, and the story of a girl who falls in love. 

Set in the Provo Library in Utah, Autumn manages to get stuck in the library over Martin Luther King Jr. Day weekend. She was meant to be leaving with a big group of friends to go camping, but had to run to the bathroom really fast, which resulted in her friends leaving her at the library, locked inside alone. But she ends up, after having a major freak out, finding out that she's not alone in the library.  Dax, whom she recognizes from school is also "locked" inside. Dax is the guy at school that has the bad reputation, but doesn't even talk to anyone or feel the need to correct any of the false rumors. He's also pretty freakin hot. Basically a hot loner with some pretty big issues. 

That's all I'm going to sum up about this book, which is only just the very beginning, because I will end up giving EVERYTHING away if I continue. SO MUCH HAPPENS. A lot of unexpected things, so read this book!!! 

This book is amazing and made my heart feel all the things it's been needing to feel lately. Autumn is such a relatable character to those of us who do suffer from anxiety and the struggle of anxiety was represented so well in this book. I connected with Autumn's character so much because just like her, I struggle in crowds, confined places, and simply saying "no" to people because I don't want anyone to hate me. I really really recommend this book to anyone that struggles with anxiety because your story is out there and is being told. I also just recommend this book in general because it was such a cute contemporary read that made my heart so so happy. I give this book 4 out of 5 stars because it made me happy and I had too many emotions while reading this book.  ❤❤❤❤ Thank you Kasie West for giving my heart all the feels. 

February Uppercase Unboxing

Happy (late) Valentines Day!!
I have been very very very sick since Saturday so I spent my Valentines day curled up on my couch with my pup watching Friends and ended the day with a trip to the hospital because I just wasn't getting any better. I've now got lots of antibiotics and meds to get me better! 

When I found out that Uppercase was partnering with EpicReads for the February box, I kind of freaked out a little bit. I was so so excited because I love EpicReads! This months book is .... By Your Side by Kasie West!!! Again this is a book that was on my list because who wouldn't want to get stuck in a library?! (my number one dream)  This is an Uppercase Hardcover Edition and it is signed by Kasie West! And I may or may not have gotten carried away when I opened my box and just started reading it... oops. The second item I grabbed out of the cute Valentines Edition "bag/box" was Pride and Peppermint Tea!! THANK GOD BECAUSE NOW I DON'T HAVE TO DRAG MY SICK SELF TO THE STORE FOR MORE PEPPERMINT TEA!!! Tea and Pride and Prejudice are just two of the very many things I love and putting them together makes me a very happy girl! I've also gone ahead and started steeping a cup. Lets just say I rushed taking the photo this month because I was too excited for everything. Next bookish item was a Valentine Card from EpicReads that says "I'd share my books with you." This is very cute, but I currently would not share my books with anyone so this is the PERFECT bookmark :) This month to keep the theme of Valentines Day we got a laptop sticker that says "I <3 YA", which is super cute and very very fitting. The last item I pulled out of my box this month was a Sherlock Holmes 221B Key Necklace, which I LOVE and already plan on wearing it everyday because who doesn't love Sherlock Holmes?! 

This months Uppercase Box was absolutely PERFECT. Yall have just been on point since I subscribed and I cannot wait for the many more months to come! If you love YA, new releases, signed books, and bookish things you definitely need to check out Uppercase!! They have been so lovely and every month is like Christmas!

The Books I Hope to Read in February

I was going to post a TBR, but TBR's just seem to set me up for failure. Since there's only like a week in a half left of January, I decided I would make a list of the books I hope to get to in the month of February. This list is just to let you know the book I'll possibly read and possible reviews you may see in the up coming future. (I'm pretty sure this is classified as a TBR, but we're going to pretend it's not) 

  • Frost Blood by Elly Blake
  • The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon 
  • Towers Falling by Jewell Parker Rhodes - this book is for one of my classes so if you would like to see a review on it just let me know.
  • Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan - also for class
  • The Heroes of Olympus: The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan- again for class
  • Kane Chronicles: The Red Pyramid by Rick Riordan- you guessed it, it's also for class 
  • Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard: The Sword of Summer by Rick Riordan - another one for class
  • The Trials of Apollo: The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan -the last one for class 
So as you can see most of the books I plan on reading are for one of my classes this semester. My midterm is a pretty cool project over an author and my author is Rick Riordan, of course. I will most likely put up reviews for all of the Rick Riordan books because it will help me out when it comes time to put the project together. And I also just really love Rick Riordan and Percy Jackson, so I'm so excited I have an excuse to buy and read his other books. 

Those are the books I PLAN on reading in February. Just remember that things happen and plans do change. Let me know what you plan on reading in the month of February below! Oh, and also if you have any bookish blog ideas you would like to see in the future let me know and I'll be happy to do that! 

January Uppercase Unboxing and Life Update

I'm not sure why, but this month I was just way too excited to receive my Uppercase box. And I was not disappointed at all when I checked my mail last night!! The book for January is Frost Blood by Elly Blake (signed of course), which I'm so so so happy we got this book in our Uppercase box because I actually had it on my list of 2017 new releases I wanted to read. We also got a Frost Blood magnet that I put on my refrigerator as soon as I opened it. This month we also got a cute little herb mix Book seed paper, I love plants so I'm so excited to plant this little book and watch it grow. The last bookish item we received in our box this month is an Uppercase Exclusive Alice in Wonderland scarf that is so beautiful and detailed. I cannot wait to wear it! And of course we received the bookmark reading experience that we get every month to go along with the books. 

So far with the 4 Uppercase Boxes I've received, I have been so happy and excited. I recommend Uppercase so so much! My Uppercase Box makes it feel like Christmas every month and I absolutely love it!

To sign up for your own Uppercase Box:

And now for the Life Update... You know all those books I had planned on reading over break? Well I got in a bit of a reading slump, which was terrible, and only read one book. ONE BOOK. Like how?! I ended up getting completely sucked into Game of Thrones, yes I know about time I started watching it. My goal is to read a book a week with this crazy semester and hopefully I'll stick to it and be able to accomplish that goal. So that's just my little update on why I've been MIA, if you actually read this, and me stating the terrible fact that I only read one book over break.