Bookchella: YallWest 2017 Recap

wrap-up-wednesdays

Sorry for being MIA for a few days, but I had my AP Calc BC exam yesterday and had no time to post. Today, as you can probably guess from the title, I’m going to be doing a recap of YallWest. YallWest, from what I’ve heard about Coachella, is a bookish and obviously much better version. I mean, aside from the long lines and hot weather, there are so many more pluses: free books, meeting authors, and all that good stuff. I will not be doing a book haul today because I got A LOT of books, so I’ve moved that portion into next week. Instead, today I’m going to be covering all the different signings and panels and such that I attended. Loads of pictures and fangirling to follow. I warn you, this will be long, so buckle up my pandas. It’s going to be a bumpy ride! Continue reading

Advertisements

Getting a Head Start: YallWest Fierce Friday 2017 Wrap Up

wrap-up-wednesdays

Super quick post today because I have lots to do and am still feeling a bit drained after my AP exam, but today is the first post in my series of YallWest wrap ups! Because I have so much to report, this series is going to be about 3 or 4 posts long. First up is Fierce Friday! Fierce Friday is an awesome event run in conjunction with the Santa Monica Public Library, at that venue. It’s sponsored by Fierce Reads and associated with YallWest but not actually run BY YallWest if I understand correctly. If you’re able to, I highly recommend attending the event because there are less people and therefore shorter lines for authors whose lines might be extremely long during the actual festival. But enough rambling. Let’s dive into the actual recap!

I actually came a little bit later to the event, around 6:15 pm, because I was helping set up for YallWest the next day. Back at Santa Monica High School, I helped move tables and boxes of sponsor’s books as well as watched some author shenanigans. I don’t know what exactly was happening over at Fierce Friday but my mom told me there was some kind of trivia or something.

Anyway, when we got into the event I first fell in line with my mom for Victoria Aveyard’s signing. This is actually the third time this year that I’ve met her, and she actually still remembers me! Given the sheer volume of fans and people she meets, it felt really nice to be remembered and recognized. She signed my copy of Glass Sword as well as Cruel Crown, and off I went to play some trivia and get my photo taken at the photo booth. You can see the Heartless tumbler and ARC (I Believe In a Thing Called Love) that I won from the trivia in the picture, as well as the tote from Fierce Reads. I was extremely excited to get all these items, and the tote was really cool because I got to do some special stuff with it (results to be revealed later.)

At 7 pm I went to meet Roshani Chokshi and have my books signed to her. Guys, she is literally one of the sweetest people on Earth and I just can’t. I fangirled so much when I met because I just love her books so much!!! She was so incredibly warm and she somehow knows me from either Instagram or Twitter and she gave me a hug and gah I just couldn’t stop smiling!!! If you ever have the chance to meet Rosh, do it. You won’t regret it!

img_0267.jpg
Last but not least, I got to meet the fabulous Nicola Yoon! I don’t even know how late she had to stay there because her line was still really long, but she was still really gracious and had a smile for everyone. It was totally worth the wait to get to meet her. Oh and in case you’re wondering my weird hand gesture is me explaining how much I enjoyed her books, especially The Sun Is Also a Star! 

All in all, Fierce Friday is an incredibly fun event and highly recommend you attend next year! It’s a less stressful way to meet some of your favorite authors, and it also can help free up part of your YallWest schedule! See you next week for another YallWest recap!

signature-banner

Let’s See What’s Inside: March FairyLoot Unboxing

wrap-up-wednesdays

Today, I’m going to finally be doing an unboxing for the March 2017 FairyLoot. For those of you who don’t know, FairyLoot is a UK-based monthly book subscription box. You can subscribe or do a single purchase (which is what this is.) In each box, you get a book along with some other shenanigans. This particular month’s box is especially special because it was FairyLoot’s one year anniversary. That meant having the gorgeous purple box, but it also mean that it was ridiculously hard to get a box. I was lucky enough to be one of the 90 people to get a box in the bloodbath that was the March box overflow sale. Literally, the boxes sold out in like 5 minutes. Anyway, that meant I was just even more excited to receive my box, and FairyLoot did not disappoint! Without further ado, presenting the March 2017 FairyLoot box!

There are actually a few things I left out of the picture above, but you get how pretty it is! I mean look at all the things in there! What exactly are those things? Glad you asked, let’s take a look in the box. Continue reading

The Grand Grand Finale: 2016 Wrap-up

For the first Wrap-up Wednesday of the year, I’m going to do a whole year wrap-up! I found this awesome year end survey made by Jamie at The Perpetual Page Turner. so let’s see how this goes. Some of these questions are extremely hard (because there are so many options!), so I’ll just answer with what first comes to mind. Basically, even if there are several books that fit the question, only the one or two that jump out immediately will count. Books listed are NOT in order of preference. Ok, enough rambling. Let’s go, my pandas!

2016 Reading Stats

Number of Books You Read

Officially, according to the Goodreads goal I met, 150. However, I didn’t officially start using Goodreads until May 2016, so I may have forgotten some other books.

Number of Re-Reads

Unknown, but maybe 75? In any case, waaaaayyyyy tooooo much!

Genre You Read the Most From

I don’t have an exact number but I’d say probably science fiction/fantasy since that’s the genre I tend to read the most from.

Best in Books

Best Book You Read in 2016

WHAT KIND OF QUESTION IS THIS? Even breaking it down by genre won’t help because THEY ARE ALL FANTASY!!! AHHHH!!!! Ok, for now, I’m just going to go with Crooked Kingdom because that’s the first book I thought of. But still.

Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going to Love More But Didn’t

The Perks of Being a Wallflower. While it was okay, based on the hype I thought I would LOVE it a lot more.

Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read

Carry On I guess? While I’d read Rainbow Rowell’s books before and liked them, I hadn’t LOVED them. Carry On though? Amazing and on my all-time favorites list.

Book you “pushed” the most people to read (and they did)

I think I’ve pushed Illuminae and Gemina as well as Six of Crows duology the most. I’ve successfully pushed one person for each book, but I don’t know if anyone else has read it because of me? I hope so.

Best series you started in 2016? Best Sequel of 2016? Best Series Ender of 2016?

HAHAHA WELL. The amount of series I started in 2016 is A LOT, almost all hyped books, all amazing. For simplicity, I’m going to go with series starters only, not what I started, and so on so forth. For series starter, I’m going to go with Lady Midnight and The Star-Touched Queen. Best sequel goes to Gemina and A Torch Against the Night. Finally, best series ender goes to Crooked Kingdom, The Rose and the Dagger, and The Raven King.

Favorite new author you discovered in 2016?

Again, this would take forever, so I’m only going to do debuts. Evelyn Skye, Roshani Chokshi, Heidi Heilig, Audrey Coulthurst, Kerri Maniscalo, Kathleen Glasgow, Brittany Cavallaro, Jessica Khoury, for starters. Ok that wasn’t brief, but one good thing about 2016 was the number of amazing debut authors!!!

Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?

I guess I don’t normally read historical fiction? For my favorite books in this genre, I’m going to go with Stalking Jack the Ripper, My Lady Jane, and Code Name Verity. I would add The Girl from Everywhere, but I don’t know if that counts as historical fiction…

Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?

Again? ANOTHER IMPOSSIBLE QUESTION? WHY?!?!?! Fine, I’ll try to choose. Let’s go with Crooked Kingdom, Morning Star, and Gemina.

Book You Read in 2016 that You Are Most Likely to Re-read Next Year?

Ok, I’m not even going to try. Given my habit of rereads, I’d say more than 80% of them. Oops?

Favorite cover of a book you read in 2016?

Only doing books published in 2016. Lady Midnight, The Star-Touched Queen, Of Fire and Stars, Heartless, Passenger, The Problem with Forever, Rebel of the Sands, The Raven King, and Furthermore.

Most memorable character of 2016?

NO. NOT GOING TO DO IT. ALL OF THEM. ALL MY BABIES!!!

Most beautifully written book read in 2016?

Oldie but beauty: The Song of Achilles and The Night Circus. Something old, something new: The Six of Crows Duology and The Wrath and the Dawn Duology. Newbie but goodie: The Star-Touched Queen and The Midnight Star.

Most thought-provoking/life-changing book of 2016?

I’m going to interpret this as eye-opening, so: Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda, More Happy Than Not, and Girl in Pieces. The first had a lot of really thought-provoking quotes, and really made me think even deeper about a lot of issues that I still took for granted. The latter two were both gritty and real #ownvoices novels, and extremely necessary.

Book you can’t believe you waited until 2016 to finally read?

ALL OF THEM!!!!

Favorite passage/quote from a book you read in 2016?

SO MANY! The one I have on my phone case right now is from Crooked Kingdom, and it says, “When you can’t beat the odds, change the game.”

Shortest & longest book you read in 2016?

Shortest YA novel: The Perks of Being a Wallflower. Longest YA novel: Lady Midnight.

Book that shocked you the most?

Taken twists and turns wise? SIX OF CROWS DUOLOGY ALL THE WAY!!! The Red Rising trilogy! Oh and also ILLUMINAE AND GEMINA!!! Btw, I’m listening to the Gemina audiobook right now, and the lollipop song and just everything in it is amazing.

OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)

IT’S CUTE THAT YOU THINK I COULD PICK. Wesper, Kaz/Inej, Matthias/Nina from the Six of Crows duology;  Adelina/Magiano from the Young Elites Trilogy; Simon/Blue from Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda; Maya/Amar from The Star-Touched Queen; Khalid/Shazi from the Wrath and the Dawn duology; Patrochilles from The Song of Achilles; Snowbaz from Carry On; and Bluesey, Pynch from The Raven Cycle.

Favorite non-romantic relationship of the year:

Maddie/Queenie from Code Name Verity, Ninej from the Six of Crows duology and the Gangsey from The Raven Cycle.

Favorite book you read in 2016 from an author you’ve read previously

The Midnight Star by Marie Lu, Carry On by Rainbow Rowell, Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare

Best book you read in 2016 that you read based SOLELY on a recommendation from somebody else/peer pressure

Like everything this year basically? I mean almost all the books I read this year were popular books that I had never read…

Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2016?

NOPE. NEXT. DON’T MAKE ME PICK.

Best 2016 debut you read?

The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi is AMAZING!!!!

Best worldbuilding/most vivid setting you read this year?

The Red Rising trilogy, the Six of Crows duology, the Grisha trilogy, Heartless, The Star-Touched Queen, the Young Elites trilogy, The Night Circus, Furthermore, and the Wrath and the Dawn duology.

Book that put a smile on your face/was the most FUN to read?

My Lady Jane and The Hammer of Thor were both so charming and hilarious!!!

Book that made you cry or nearly cry in 2016?

CAPS MEANS EVEN MORE TEARS: Morning Star, THE MIDNIGHT STAR, Crooked Kingdom, CODE NAME VERITY, The Raven King, THE SONG OF ACHILLES, THE ROSE AND THE DAGGER, ALL THE BRIGHT PLACES.

Hidden gem of the year?

The Melody of You and Me by M. Hollis is a novella, but a super sweet and diverse story!

Book that crushed your soul?

SEE BOOKS THAT MADE ME CRY!!!

Most unique book you read in 2016?

The Sun is Also a Star with its different POVs, Code Name Verity for reliability spoiler reasons, and the Illuminae files with all the different formats

Book that made you the most mad?

Idk. An Abundance of Katherines? That didn’t make me MAD though, just bored and annoyed.

Your Blogging/Bookish Life

New favorite book blog you discovered in 2016?

ALL OF THEM!!! (including mine) 😛

Favorite review that you wrote in 2016?

Because of the length, fangirling, heartbreak, and time that went into them: How to Rip My Heart into A Million Pieces: The Song of Achilles and What’s the Name of the Game?: Crooked Kingdom.

Best discussion/non-review post you had on your blog?

A Very Merry, Very Diverse Holiday Season to You: Top Ten Diverse Books to Give This Season because of the diverse reads I’ve put on here, although I’ve read even more diverse books after that. Dear America: The 2016 U.S. Election because it was a source of venting and emotions after the election. What’s in a Name?: Top Ten Characters I’d Name a Panda After because it was really fun to come up with these names! Maybe I’ll use them soon…

Best event that you participated in?

The Lady Midnight Cassie Clare signing, Yallwest, and the Sabaa Tahir Torch Against the Night signing. That is all I went to so… but still!

Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2016?

Starting blogging, I guess? I mean, that’s just a small kind of thing though…

Most challenging thing about blogging or your reading life this year?

Trying to learn how to manage my blog, manage my time, and manage my reading all at once!

Most popular post this year on your blog?

Read All the Diverse Books: Diversity December Bingo and the DA Readathon TBR Lists It’s kind of random, although sign up posts do usually do the best.

Post you wished got a little more love?

All of them? But especially my favorites mentioned above, from my Song of Achilles and Crooked Kingdom reviews to my 2016 election open letter.

Best bookish discover?

Bookish blogging and preordering! Can you believe I didn’t know about this stuff before 2016?

Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?

My Goodreads challenge of 150 books and the Diversity Dec Bingo of one line!

Looking Ahead

One book you didn’t get to in 2016 but will be your number 1 priority in 2017?

Well, the first book I read and finished was A Darker Shade of Magic which was amazing!!!

Book you are most anticipating for 2017 (non-debut)?

SOOO MANY!!! Including but not limited to Flame in the Mist, History is All You Left Me, Wonder Woman, The Upside of Unrequited, Iron Gold, and Roseblood.

2017 debut you are most anticipating?

Stephanie Garber’s Caraval and Sierra Abram’s The Color Project!!!

Series ending/a sequel you are most anticipating in 2017?

A Conjuring of Light, The Crown’s Fate, A Crown of Wishes, Illuminae 3, and Lord of Shadows.

One thing you hope to accomplish or do in your reading/blogging life in 2017?

Grow my blog, meet even more wonderful people, and complete my reading goal of 365 books!

A 2017 release you’ve already read & recommend to everyone?

Unfortunately, I have not yet been granted access to ARCs and have not been able to buy any of yesterday’s releases, so I’ll have to pass.

If you stuck all the way down here, give me a high five! You deserve a cookie! Actually, as an experiment, if you’re reading this, type the code word: cookie and answer this question: What is the shortest YA novel I read this year? I may just pick one person to send a little something to…

P.S. If I do end up doing the above, U.S. only and no guarantees that I’ll actually do it. I’m broke!

The Grand Finale: October 2016 Wrap-up

I know lots of bloggers do wrap-up posts at the end of month, so I thought I’d try my hand at it. I’ve broken it down by post types, as well as included some fun stuff in the beginning. Enjoy and let me know how you like it! I’m considering making this a monthly thing, the first Wednesday after the end of the month, called Wrap-up Wednesdays. I also started to really get back into the blog this month, so there’s a lot more content!

Fun Stuff!

  • As you probably know, Monday was Halloween! I dressed up as Isabelle Lightwood from the Mortal Instruments. This was my first year dressing up a book character, and I’m super happy with the results. I’m glad I decided to be Izzy; I felt so bad-ass! 14736370_1827393747531037_6774146711309778944_n
  • Question of the month: Do you guys want me start posting ballet stuff?

Recommended Reads:

Watching It Burn: A Torch Against the Night

A Spark, a Catalyst, and an Ember: An Ember in the Ashes

Faith, Trust and Poison: White Nights, Black Paradise

Reaching the Horizon: In the Afterlight

The Winner Takes It All: The Winner’s Trilogy

What To Do When Your Planet Gets Invaded: Illuminae

Mindblown!!! (Literally): Gemina

Pride Goeth Before the Fall: The Thousandth Floor

Nineteen Years Later: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

 

Other Reviews

Day after Day after Day after Day: Every Day

The Perils of Shopping: Vassa in the Night

 

Tags

Sweet Sixteen: The Birthday Book Tag

Things that Go Bump: Creatures of the Night Book Tag

 

Other

What’s in a Name?: Top Ten Characters I’d Name a Panda After

I’m Running Out of Time To Save the World: The Age of YA Protagonists

 

Anything you especially liked this month? Anything you want me to cover? Just let me know!

 

The Second Grand Finale: November 2016 Wrap-up

Time for another monthly wrap-up! November was a rollercoaster of a month. In terms of real-life events, life wasn’t great. First of all, the election. I’m still a little bit in denial about the results, but I did have so many emotions about it that I wrote my longest post ever. (It’s linked below, called Dear America: The 2016 U.S. Election.) School and ballet were also extremely stressful, so not exactly my best month. I did get a lot of reviews and posts done though, so I guess that’s good.

Fun Stuff:

  • I celebrated my six-month blogiversary and bookstagramiversary!
  • November was unfortunately an extremely slow reading month. I only read 6 books, most of them during Thanksgiving break, but I loved all of them! Raving reviews to come soon.
  • If you follow me on Twitter, you may have seen that I have decided to post/retweet a panda picture a day. For you know, emergency reasons.
  • I posted my first ever unboxing (of the OwlCrate November box).

 

Recommended Reads Reviews:

What’s the Name of the Game?: Crooked Kingdom (ALL-TIME FAVORITE)

What’s the Risk?: Everything, Everything

VIR (Very Important Read): Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda (ALL-TIME FAVORITE)

The Forgotten Part: Root

Snow White, But With Dragons!!!: The Shadow Queen

Kiss Me Hardy! Kiss Me Quick.: Code Name Verity (ALL-TIME FAVORITE)

What to Do When Your Plans Fall Apart: The Unexpected Everything

Keep Your Enemies Closer: Ruined

There Are Always Two Sides: Replica

 

Weekly Memes:

 

Once Upon a Time: Top Ten Books to Read If Your Book Club Likes Retellings (Top Ten Tuesdays)

Dear America: The 2016 U.S. Election (Thinking Thursdays)

It All Started With a Mouse: Top Ten Favorite Disney Movies (Top Ten Tuesdays)

May I Return to the Beginning?: 6 Month Blogiversary! (Thinking Thursdays)

Let’s See What’s Inside: November OwlCrate Unboxing (Wrap-up Wednesdays)

A Very Merry, Very Diverse Holiday Season to You: Top Ten Diverse Books to Give This Season (Top Ten Tuesdays)

 

 

Other:

That Never-ending List: Beat the Backlist Challenge

Revelio!: Cover Reveal of Crawdad

How did your month go? Is there anything on here you’d like to see more of? Any specific topics or books?

 

Let’s See What’s Inside: November OwlCrate Unboxing

So today, I’m going to be doing my very first unboxing on here! This is actually my third ever OwlCrate, but I think I was the most excited for this one! I’ve decided to make Wrap-up Wednesdays a combination of both monthly recaps as well as subscription box unboxings! P.S. Apparently, this is my 100th post!

First Impressions and a Sneak Peek!

img_7892 img_7893

Even when I first opened the box I was very excited! Just from the small sneak peek above you can see two wonderfully whimsical items, and I assure you the rest of the box was just as amazing! Now it’s time to pick it apart piece by piece. Continue reading