It’s the start of a new month and we’re officially into the second half of 2020. Let’s hope that we don’t have any new surprises or disasters popping up. Hope y’all have a great July!
Okay onto book updates.
The Three Ws are:
What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?
What are you currently reading?
I’m currently still reading 101 Essays That Will Change the Way You Think by Brianna West. I’m reading it very slowly, about one essay a day speed so.. I’ll take a while to finish it.
The second book I’m reading is Opposite of Always by Justin A. Reynolds which I’m listening to on audiobook.
What did you recently finish reading?
I finished 3 books in the last week.
First one was Em and the Big Hoom by Jerry Pinto. It was an eye-opening read for me. The book follows the life of a boy who’s mother battles with mental illness and we see all the facets that come with the illness.
It was a very raw and honest point of view with zero sugar-coating. I really liked it and definitely recommend it.
The next book that I finished was Must Love Jogs by Xavier Neal. I got this book on the Kindle store someday last year when a bunch of romance books were free. I got about 9 of the books and only read 1 of them, so I picked up another in order to try new books.
This book was not great but not too bad as well. It was okay. Not very enjoyable and there are definitely better books out there.
The last book I finished was Release by Patrick Ness. I’ve had this book for quite a while now and it also has a queer main character so I pushed myself to pick it up since it was Pride month.
I have mixed feelings about the book. One half was good and the other half was confusing and had no point to it. Here’s the review that I wrote on Instagram:
What do you think you’ll read next?
This month, I have at least a couple buddy reads. So hopefully I’ll pick up at least one of the books soon.
But, to be honest, I’ve had a hectic few days (if you follow me on Instagram, I posted all about it) and am not in the headspace to actually pick up new books. I’m not sure. Let’s see what I end up reading. No set picks, though.
Considering that this is the first year that I’m properly attempting reading challenges, I’m doing pretty good. I’m actually really happy with my progress.
Goodreads Reading Challenge
I started the year with a goal to read 150 books, same as 2019’s goal. But with a busy life and schedule, I wasn’t able to read at that pace and I reduced my goal to 100 books.
As of now, my progress is at 71/100 books!!
If I kept up with this pace, I’ll be on track to read about 125 books by the end of the year. I can try to hit 150 but that would take a lot of effort and would put too pressure on me. Especially since I don’t know how things will be when we gradually stop social distancing.
For now, I’m keeping it at 100. Once I hit that, I think I’ll raise it to 120 and so on (if possible) in small increments.
SOUTH-ASIAN READING CHALLENGE 2020
Primarily hosted by Fanna, this challenge encourages us to read more South Asian books.
I read 2 South-Asian books since my last update. They are Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows by Balli Kaur Jaswal and The Henna Wars by Adiba Jaigirdar. I also just realized that I forgot to include one book under this category last month which is The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan.
All of the three books were really good reads (rated them all 4 stars). I have posted reviews for The Henna Wars and The Joy Luck Club so you can check those out.
I admit, this challenge has slightly slipped from my mind in the last month. There wasn’t much effort from my side to pick up books that I already own over newly introduced-to-me books.
Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows by Balli Kaur Jaswal is the only book from my existing physical shelf that I picked up.
I did read a couple overdue ebooks which were The Color Purple by Alice Walker and I Wish You All The Best by Mason Deaver.
This month, being Pride Month and also one where I’m trying to pick up books that I normally wouldn’t go for, I’m not sure if I will be prioritizing this particular challenge. I will try though.
2020 Popsugar Reading Challenge
And finally, the one challenge that I am taking most seriously. It’s only because I’ve never attempted a year-long challenge based on prompts that I’m giving it extra attention with proper planning and tracking.
I barely do short-term (lasting a weekend/week/month) challenges with prompts so this is actually a big commitment for me.
And I am super happy to report that all that planning has worked out well. I’ve completed 31/50 prompts. Which means I ticked off 5 prompts in the last month.
One thing I’m trying to do is not overlap prompts with the same books so dedicating 50 out of (around) 100 books this year to the challenge is a lot. But it has helped me get to some TBR books as well as broaden my reading categories.
The prompts that I finished are:
A book with a great first line:The Color Purple by Alice Walker.
A book by a trans/non-binary author:I Wish You All The Best by Mason Deaver.
A book with the same name/title of a movie/TV show but is unrelated to it:Pride by Ibi Zoboi.
A book by/about a woman in STEM:Truth or Beard by Penny Reid.
A book with a robot/cybord/AI character:The Thousandth Floor by Katharine McGee.
I know that I still have 19 prompts left but they’re mostly ones that I’ve been putting off so.. it’s time to get to them.
Book tags are fun and light and I could use some of that right now.
As someone from India, I can’t really say anything of substance about what is happening in the US right now. All I can do is support and raise voices of those who need to be heard online, which is what I focused on the last week. But I have to say, it kind of felt like the same conversations (with friends & family) and struggles of the minority as what we had witnessed last year in India with CAA/CAB. The only real difference was I knew people who could be directly impacted by the situation then.
After these last few days of looking at news, retweeting and sharing info, and having continuous discussions about it, I do not have the energy to write a proper blog post or review. A book tag is what I’d like to do now because it’s easy and fun.
To make things a little more fun, I’ll be trying to answer with books that I read during this time of staying at home.
*hope y’all are social distancing too!
LAYING IN BED- BOOK YOU COULD/HAVE READ IN A DAY
100 Days of Sunlight by Abbie Emmons
I read this book in a few hours. It was really nice to read and very easy to get into. All my thoughts about it are in my review.
SNACKING- A GUILTY PLEASURE BOOK
Inappropriate by Vi Keeland
This book found its way to me through a romance book club because otherwise I wouldn’t have read it since I really dislike boss-employee relationships. I actually didn’t like this book as well, it was a meager 2/5 stars for me.
I didn’t feel like writing a whole review on it but I did write a mini-review.
NETFLIX- SERIES YOU WANT TO START
A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmer
I’ve seen this book on Instagram a lot and want to get into the club haha. But to be honest, I want to start any Fantasy series that I missed while I’ve been on my romance streak.
DEEP CLEAN- BEEN ON YOUR TBR FOR AGES
Where do I even start? My Goodreads TBR has over 400 books and that doesn’t even include other random books that I’ve seen around and take up space in my head as “I have to try that one”.
Let me pick one up from the depths of my Goodreads TBR.
Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch
This is now #1 on my Goodreads TBR. It was The School for Good and Evilby Soman Chainanibut I read that recently. I’ve been intrigued with this book for so long and yet I haven’t picked it up yet. I also don’t want to remove it from my list.
ANIMAL CROSSING- A BOOK YOU RECENTLY BOUGHT BECAUSE OF HYPE
Beach Read by Emily Henry
I read this book a few days back due to the hype. It sounded like a good romance novel and I was surprised that many readers were praising it, even people who don’t read romance that often. I ended up not liking it, though. As I wrote in my mini-review, it felt like a retelling of many other romance stories that I’ve already read.
PRODUCTIVITY – BOOK YOU LEARNED FROM OR HAD AN IMPACT ON YOU
I Wish You All The Best by Mason Deaver
This book has been on my TBR from before it even released. Back then I kept track of new releases and marked anticipated books. But I actually read it only recently.
It is my first book with a non-binary main character and I learnt so much about how simple phrases that I use all the time like calling every “bro” etc. might makes someone who is non-binary feel. It showed me how I am not considerate. I may not know anyone who is non-binary but it could also be because they’re not out yet. It doesn’t mean I stay insensitive.
So yeah, it made an impact on me.
FACETIME – A BOOK YOU WERE GIFTED
Circe by Madeline Miller
My book club gifted me this book for my birthday way back in December but I got to it only during lockdown. I wrote a whole review talking about my thoughts on it but her’s a gist: I love it and I’m looking forward to reading A Song of Achilles.
SELF CARE – WHAT IS ONE THING YOU HAVE DONE RECENTLY TO LOOK AFTER YOURSELF
Since I’m doing an internship and have college going on as well, I’m stuck to the laptop way too much. If you add blogging onto all that, I’m basically on the laptop all day long. My eyes are having a really hard time adjusting to this sudden increase in screen time.
It’s taken me a while to find something to do that keeps me occupied and awake but also doesn’t strain my eyes with screen time.
Now, I usually doodle in my bullet journal while listening to an audiobook when I want some rest for my eyes. This really helps as I can be occupied for a long time without screen time or a lot of strain on the eyes.
BONUS – NAME A BOOK COMING OUT SOON
I am not keeping track with new releases at all. There was time when I had a list of books to look out for and get ASAP but I’m just not into that anymore. It takes quite some time and effort and my backlist books are too many to ignore.
YOU! Only if you want to do it, of course. I’m sure all of us can use another fun way to talk about books haha.
Yes, I am STILL reading The School for Good and Evil by Soman Chainani on audiobook. But at least I made some progress this week. I listened to it for about an hour.
I’ll probably take another month to finish it at this rate.
The book I’m actually reading is With The Fire On High by Elizabeth Acevedo. It’s quite interesting, and all the food descriptions make me drool. I’m liking it.
What did you recently finish reading?
I finished reading Verity by Colleen Hoover. I’m used to romances from her so this was quite different, but it was good different. The book was creepy, mysterious, and kept me on the edge.
I took an hour longer to sleep for two nights after finishing the book because I just couldn’t stop thinking about the plot. The ending is one that still leaves some things to ponder upon. It was great.
The next book I read was Pride, Prejudice and Other Flavours by Sonali Dev. I was actually unsure on what to pick and remembered that I marked this as something I should finish last week. What do you know, these posts actually keep me responsible!
The book was a long read but it was good. The family aspects and storylines were my favourite. This book portrays a complicated Indian family so well.
What do you think you’ll read next?
Honestly, no clue. I want to read a book for the 2020 Popsugar Reading Challenge. If not Room by Emma Donoghue (I’m not really in the mood for this book now), something else from my planned reads.
I made a plan with certain books for some of the prompts, so I’ll read one of them. Other than that, I’m in the mood for another romance so I may try Beach Read by Emily Henry which was recommended by someone on Twitter.
1. ADAPTATION SNOB: DO YOU ALWAYS READ THE BOOK BEFORE YOU SEE THE MOVIE?
If I know that the book exists, yes! At least, I try.
I like reading books with all the details and imagining the world in my head. If I watch the movie first, the movie’s scenes and actors will leave an impression and affect how I experience the book.
2. FORMAT SNOB: YOU CAN ONLY CHOOSE 1 FORMAT IN WHICH TO READ BOOKS FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE. WHICH ONE DO YOU CHOOSE: PHYSICAL BOOKS, EBOOKS, OR AUDIOBOOKS?
Ebooks, definitely. I already prefer reading ebooks over paperbacks and hardbacks because they’re easier to carry around and there’s no worry about running out of books.
Reading big books as ebooks can also be less intimidating haha.
3. SHIP SNOB: WOULD YOU DATE OR MARRY A NON-READER?
Yes I would. As long as the person listens to me talk about books I don’t care whether they read or not haha.
4. GENRE SNOB: YOU HAVE TO DITCH ONE GENRE – NEVER TO BE READ AGAIN FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE. WHICH ONE DO YOU DITCH?
General knowledge and facts books haha. I don’t see myself reading them ever.
5. UBER GENRE SNOB: YOU CAN ONLY CHOOSE TO READ FROM ONE GENRE FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE. WHICH GENRE DO YOU CHOOSE?
Romance! For the past few years romance has been the one genre that I ALWAYS enjoy and turn to for comfort reads. Romance books contain more depth and plots lines than what the genre is marketed as. I will not be bored if I read only in this genre.
6. COMMUNITY SNOB: WHICH GENRE DO YOU THINK RECEIVES THE MOST SNOBBERY FROM THE BOOKISH COMMUNITY?
About a year ago I carefully unfollowed people who regularly tweet a lot about bookish drama. I just was not interested in it, and it was frankly exhausting to see.
Because of that I don’t really know which genre receives snob right now. I’d say Young Adult books because I’ve seen a few tweets on that, but I don’t really know.
7. SNOBBERY RECIPIENT: HAVE YOU EVER BEEN SNUBBED FOR SOMETHING THAT YOU HAVE BEEN READING OR FOR READING IN GENERAL?
I have! I’ve received quite a bit of snobbery because I read romance. Because of that I’ve taken to telling people a book from another genre that I’ve read recently instead of what I’m actually reading.
The most recent scenario was when someone asked me what I’m reading. I replied that I’m reading a book called My So-Called Bollywood Life and they scoffed. So much snob in one scoff/laugh.
You better believe that I have been waiting to talk about this for a long time. I always wanted to talk about books I read because of the hype and whether I liked them or not. Never got to it though, until today.
Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly blogging meme hosted by The Artsy Reader Girl and this week’s topic is “Books I Bought/Borrowed Because…” I changed the title to “read” so I can include both bought and borrowed.
There are many books that I can talk about, but I’m choosing the books that made the most impression on me.
 A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas
When A Court of Thorns and Roses released, I was a huge fan of the Throne of Glass. Hence, I read ACOTAR with high hopes. But I did not like it. In fact, I really disliked ACOTAR.
So when ACOMAF released, I had no plans of reading it and wasting my time. But after MONTHS of listening to other readers hype it up and say that “it’s so much better than ACOTAR”, I had to give it a shot. I wanted to see if it’s actually good.
And it was! I LOVED ACOMAF. Unfortunate that I hated the third book A Court of Wings and Ruin, but ACOMAF will forever have a good place in my heart.
 Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
This book is SUPER HYPED. By the time this book released, I had been burned by the hype multiple times and was wary of reading it. After months of contemplating, I finally picked it up because I had heard zero negative reviews.
And I hated it.
I hated it so much that I was annotating my frustration in the book’s pages using a pencil, and I had many notes. After finishing it, I sold it back to the second hand bookstore (after erasing my annotations, of course) as soon as I could. I wanted it gone.
Until the Game of Thrones TV show ended, the hype for it kept increasing year by year. It became so huge!
I finally succumbed to the hype when the show had completed airing 6 seasons. And since I’m a reader, of course I read the book first. And I hate myself for it.
The book was huge, had too many details, and was boring as heck. I hated it. I don’t know how I completed book 1, but at least I did not even try to read the rest.
I also watched the TV show until a few episodes into season 5 before quitting. It was so not my thing. As I binged the show, I was actually making paper lucky stars for my Instagram. I was that bored by the show.
 Aurora Rising by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufmann
What drew me to this book was it’s promise. They’re not heroes, but they’re the only ones available. A very diverse group of kids pushed together and having to save everyone in their galaxy because of being at the wrong place at the wrong time.
But I wasn’t impressed by this book. At times it was trying too hard, and there was a constant struggle between being plot-driven and character-driven. I couldn’t like it.
My hesitation in picking up this book was because I don’t enjoy poetry but once I did start reading it? I was floored. Apparently the audiobook narrated by the author is even better than just reading the book.
The Poet X is a beautiful book where the story is told in poetry, with strong words and emotions. I loved it.
 Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
Remember a few years back when this book was EVERYWHERE? Every single YA reader and then some had read it and praised it. I couldn’t go a day without hearing or reading about this book.
There were raves and a few rants. But no matter what, this book was on every’s read shelf or to-read shelf. After a few months of it being shoved in my face, I finally acquiesced and read it. And I loved it so darn much.
The hype was so right. It’s barely spoken about now because everyone in the target market read it. If you like Young Adult books and haven’t read it yet, you’ve been living under a rock.
Let’s be honest. Almost everyone who has read this book read it because of the hype. Only the first few readers picked it up on their own, and they began the hype which took over the New Adult readers like a wave.
Almost everyone has read it. Many liked it, and quite a few readers didn’t like it. But it was widely read. Within MONTHS of it’s release, hundreds of readers had read it and reviewed it. I’d say it’s one of the books that has successfully mastered and lived through the hype without being widely dissected.
I personally loved it, and shouted my love for it online.
It’s the age of the internet and that means fans can follow and interact (!!!) with celebrities. For readers, those celebrities are called authors.
There are many authors whom I follow as well. I follow partly for new book news but mostly to know the authors behind the scenes. Like what are they annoyed with today or memes that they find funny. Just fun things!
I’ve been following him since the time I joined Twitter, and I totally enjoy his tweets. Especially recently, since he posts updates about a new PJ adaptation (FINGERS CROSSED WE GET ONE!).
 V. E. Schwab
She is an ABSOLUTE QUEEN and its fun to follow her both on Twitter and Instagram. Schwab is hilarious, especially with her tweets. Also, most of her tweets are SUPER RELATABLE.
 Kiera Cass
She is HILARIOUS. I love following her on both Twitter and Instagram. Her Instagram user name is so cool.
One of the recent highlights was when there was a line in P.S. I Still Love You (Sequel of To All The Boys) that was VERY SIMILAR to a very popular line from her book The One. Everyone started tweeted her about it and she had NO CLUE because she doesn’t watch movies. It was so funny.
 Hank Green
Hank Green’s tweets on Twitter are crack. me. up. He also tweets about relevant things that are happening in the world currently.
His tweets are almost ALWAYS funny, and they’re all about his family. His young daughters are such ICONS and it’s so cool to see random life updates through his tweets.
I’ve shown his account to multiple IRL* friends actually.
*In Real Life
I mean.. seriously. I love the 5 year old. (He always refers to them by their ages)
 Penny Reid
Considering some of my favourite romance books are written by her, its obvious that she would be just as awesome as a person. Or as a Twitter account.
She also responds and interacts with her fans a TON.
 Tahereh Mafi
Her Instagram account is GORGEOUS. First of all, love her fashion and her style. It’s not my style, but I do admire her for having a very distinctive style. Another thing I love is getting glimpses of her CUTE daughter.
There are so many more pictures showing off her style that I want to show but then this post will just become an ode to her Instagram.
 Adam Silvera
I’ve been following his Twitter WAY before I even read his books. His personality is so cool and it shows through his tweets.
He also frequently gushes about other books and shares what he’s reading/loving.
 R. F. Kuang
She’s the author of The Poppy War, but it doesn’t seem like it in her Twitter feed because she talks about all life things more than book things.
One of her tweets became popular and found it’s way into my feed, which was how I started following her. It actually took me a few seconds to realize that she’s the author haha.
Sharing my FAVOURITE tweet thread by her lol.
I actually BURST OUT LAUGHING when I read the first tweet. And I was in public.
 Alexa Martin
I’ve spoken about her and her books several times in my posts, especially in the recommendation lists. So, of course, I had to find her online and follow her.
2020 is the first year where I take on reading challenges/readathons for the first time. I mentioned all the ones I’m participating in last year, and I was hesitant if I’ll be able to truly keep up with them. But I’m trying!
In this post, I’ll go through my updates on every challenge and the goals I have for this month.
GOODREADS READING CHALLENGE
I kept my goal 150 books, same as last year. But I’m already behind on the challenge lol.
Right now, I’m 3 books behind on my challenge with 12/150 books completed. 9 books were read in January. That’s a low number compared to previous years as January is usually the month when I read many books. But this time I didn’t have a full sem break in Jan so the reads went down as well.
My goal this month is to catch up with the challenge. If I don’t catch up by the end of February, I’ll mostly lower my goal. The rest of the year will just be more hectic so if I don’t catch up now, I won’t later.
SOUTH-ASIAN READING CHALLENGE 2020
Started by Fanna, the goal is just to read as many South-Asian books as you can. There are also Books of the Month (BOTM) picked by the hosts every month.
For February, I’m reading 2 South-Asian books. One is Loveboat, Taipei by Abigail Hing Wen which I’m currently listening to as an audiobook. The other is Stories We Never Tell by Savi Sharma which I picked up in the bookstore recently.
In my excitement for this challenge, I made a whole post about what I’d like to read in Janurary. I read three books from that list and stopped following it. I’m a mood reader so I honestly expected it.
Books I read that fit this challenge:
Becoming by Michelle Obama
Thanks for the Memories by Cecelia Ahern
The Silva Mind Control Method by Jose Silva
Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami
Books I want to read in February:
The Thing Around Your Neck by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (currently reading!)
Stories We Never Tell by Savi Sharma
Frankly in Love by David Yoon
2020 POPSUGAR READING CHALLENGE
My progress on this challenge is LAUGHABLE. The only reason I got any ticked off was because I read books that fit two challenges.
Prompts I completed:
Book about a world leader: Becoming by Michelle Obama
A book set in Japan: Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami
A book with more than 20 letters in the title: My So Called Bollywood Life by Nisha Sharma
A book with a 3 word-title: The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
I’m doing the same in February as January. I’m trying to fit all my reads picked for other challenges into prompts for this challenge.
Prompts I’m aiming for in February:
A book that’s published in 2020: The Worst Best Man by Mia Sosa (already finished!)
A book set in a country beginning with C: Loveboat, Taipei by Abigail Hing Wen which is set in China.
A book you picked because the title caught your attention: The Thing Around Your Neck by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie which was a random buy at the bookstore because of the title.
A book by a WOC: Stories We Never Tell by Savi Sharma
And that’s it! It feels like a lot haha. Let’s hope I can do it all.
The upcoming year is the start to a new decade and the start to tons of new life experiences and opportunities. Everyone is abuzz with hopes and huge bucket lists and ambitious plans.
Going into 2020, I’m obviously going to keep up with my reading and am planning on making my reading a little bit more fun. Over the past month, I’ve seen SO MANY announcements for 2020 year-long readathons and reading challenges. It’s overwhelming to decide from several amazing options, but I’ve managed to decide on a few of them.
Now, I generally don’t participate in year-long reading challenges because I tend to forget about them. But this time, there are groups for these ones and friends from my bookstagram club are joining in as well. Hopefully, this will help me not forget and actually finish these challenges.
Totally, I’m participating in 5(!!!!) reading challenges this year.
 Goodreads Reading Challenge
This is a staple for me every year. I’ve been participating in the Goodreads Reading Challenge since 2015 and it’s a great way to track your reading.
How this works: it’s a very flexible challenge because the goal is set by you. The goal is the number of books you want to read next year, and using Goodreads* helps track your reading. All the math about whether you’re behind or ahead in your reading is done by Goodreads to help you keep track of your status.
My goal is 150 books, the same as 2019. Usually I stay ahead of my goal and manage to surpass it early enough but it wasn’t so this year. I barely managed to hit my goal. Because of that, I’m not increasing my goal next year. It would be nice to read more, but 150 is what I’m aiming for.
*by marking books as “read” along with the dates on the website
 A-Z Reading Challenge
This is another staple. I don’t consciously put effort for this every year. It’s more of an afterthought at the end of the year where I look back and see if I managed to get all the letters done. It’s just fun to look back and see how many you’ve managed to fill. This is also a very low effort challenge.
How it works: You read a book starting with every letter of the alphabet, with an exception for a few letters. See this post to know more.
 South-Asian Reading Challenge 2020
Fanna @ fannatality came up with this brilliant reading challenge which aims to put more focus on South-Asian books and diversify our reading. More details about the challenge haven’t been released yet but I’m super excited to participate.
CW @ The Quiet Pond came up with this idea because she has a ton of backlist books on her physical which needed to be read last year. When she posted the idea on twitter and received a ton of positive response, she made up this AMAZING reading challenge.
To be honest, I don’t really need to be participating because my backlist books aren’t that many, but I want to just for the aesthetics and activities within this challenge. It’s very tempting.
The best part of this is that it doesn’t have prompts so I can mix it up with other reading challenges as well. Flexible challenges are my jam.
I found this challenge purely by luck after it was shared in a book group that I’m in. The challenge has a total of 50 prompts (a lot, I know). I was very unsure of joining this one because of the amount of effort it will take to find books for the prompts, and the large number of prompts.
After deliberating for a whole day, I decided that I might as well give it a go. I haven’t participating in a reading challenge like this before and I really want to try. Plus, the prompts are so good and interesting! They will definitely push me out of my comfort zone and introduce some new books.
If I said that I’m not overwhelmed at all by the thought of taking on all of these challenges, it would be a lie. But since most of them are flexible and can be mixed with other challenges, it should be doable as long as I plan my reads right.
I’ve already started planning on how to tackle the Popsugar challenge with #StartOnYourShelfathon bu choosing books that I own which fits some Popsugar prompts. I think I can do this.
Over the last few years, the number of romance books I read has been slowly increasing. This year, my favourite genre changed from Fantasy to Romance. Or maybe it changed late last year but I only came to terms with it in 2019.
Since I was all into Adult Romance, I gobbled up romance books A LOT. My Goodreads challenge has very few books which are not in the Adult Romance genre. As I read so many of them, I thought I’d share my favourites with y’all.
This week’s Top Ten Tuesday prompt is a freebie, so we’re free to post any top 10 list of ours. And I’m so glad because I can’t join in on any of the Christmas lists haha.
Note: most of these are Adult Romances and contain various degrees of explicit scenes.
Rafe by Rebekan Weatherspoon
I read this book only recently and it has SWOOPED into my favourites easily, destroying the chance for any other book. This book was SO GOOD. I’m still reeling from that reading experience.
Cute AF six year old.
BREAKING GENDER STEREOTYPES.
Being understanding and respectable about boundaries!!!
ADULTS ACTING LIKE RESPONSIBLE ADULTS.
Slow and true relationship growth.
I read that book twice in the span of a month. After my first read, I read two other books, but then this was just too good and nothing else compared so I HAD to reread it.
Okay so I actually did not write a full review for this because I binge read both the books in this duet in less than two days. After that, I was just reeling from the effects and my heart needed TIME. Then I just couldn’t not form proper sentences for this book.
WILL BREAK YOUR HEART. Definitely. For sure.
Heartache and Hope. The title says it all. It’ll break you, fix you back, and repeat.
HIGH SCHOOL LOVE.
A really good plot. And so unique.
VAR VETERAN REP. PTSD REP. DISABILITY REP.
Honestly, all the representations were brilliant. The female lead’s mum suffers from PTSD after being a PoW. It’s.. a lot to take in.
You will need time to heal after this duet.
Advised to read content warnings before picking up the book.
 FAKE IT TILL YOU BREAK IT BY JENN P. NGUYEN
This is the only Young Adult book in this list. It’s technically contemporary but it’s pretty much romance so I’m counting it.
ENEMIES TO LOVERS TROPE.
In a different way, it’s also kind of friends-to-lovers trope.
Christina Lauren have smoothed into my favourite Romance authors list. So of course one of their books would be in this list.
Perfect vacation read.
Or just for a chill afternoon.
ENEMIES TO LOVERS TROPE.
The plot was really nice.
WILL MAKE YOU LAUGH.
 FOREVER RIGHT NOW BY EMMA SCOTT
When I found and picked up this book, I didn’t have many expectations. I just read it, and it was okay. But by the time I finished the book, it really made an impact on me. I spent days just thinking about it. After a while, I reread it and liked it even more.
This is one of those books which sneaks up on you and you don’t even realise when it becomes one of your favourites.
ALCOHOLIC RECOVERY REP.
A strong female lead, who I’m honestly inspired by.
New month, new fall/autumn vibes for most people around the globe while I’ll be having rainy (and gloomy) vibes, and new experiences to have.
I’ve been eyeing WWW Wednesday blogging meme for a while now, but since I usually update my reading on my Sunday Post, I don’t do it. This week, though, I didn’t update on Sunday because I had too many life things to talk about. And hence, I got the perfect time to do this post!
There’s only one book in my currently reading pile, surprisingly, because life has been getting in the way with a LOT of events and deadlines. I’m barely keeping up at this point.
That Girl From Nowhere by Dorothy Koomson is a book that I picked up in a book fair back in February. Many books from that haul are sitting unread on my shelf and I decided that I’m finishing them by the end of the year. And so, I started with this one.
That Girl From Nowhere is a mystery novel, so I’m quite excited to read it because I haven’t read mystery in SO LONG.
‘Where are you coming from with that accent of yours?’ he asks. ‘Nowhere,’ I reply. ‘I’m from nowhere.’ ‘Everyone’s from somewhere,’ he says. ‘Not me,’ I reply silently.
Clemency Smittson was adopted as a baby and the only connection she has to her birth mother is a cardboard box hand-decorated with butterflies. Now an adult, Clem decides to make a drastic life change and move to Brighton, where she was born. Clem has no idea that while there she’ll meet someone who knows all about her butterfly box and what happened to her birth parents.
As the tangled truths about her adoption and childhood start to unravel, a series of shocking events cause Clem to reassess whether the price of having contact with her birth family could be too high to pay…
An emotional story about love, identity and the meaning of family, That Girl From Nowehere is the new novel from the bestselling author of The Ice Cream Girls, The Woman He Loved Before and My Best Friend’s Girl.
What did you recently finish reading?
Last week saw me finish 3 books.
Hyde & Seek by Layla Frost. I was in the mood for mindless romance so I just picked this one up. It wasn’t great, and I got really annoyed by the male lead multiple times. It was also pretty cliche. The one thing I liked was the friendship squad. They were all really close and supportive and I liked the interactions between them all.
Muffin Top by Avery Flynn. This trilogy by the author focuses on female leads who are not considered conventionally attractive. Muffin Top features a female lead, Lucy, who is “fat” and could care less about it. The male lead, Frankie, goes along with Lucy to her high school reunion as her fake date. Sparks fly as these two truly get to know each other.
I was quite underwhelmed by Muffin Top. I was totally on board with the fat-shaming focus and how it’s hard for curvy women to be considered attractive. I was mostly on-board with the romance. But there was just some aspect missing. I wasn’t in love with the plot or characters, and once I finished the book, I could care less about it.
Educated by Tara Westover. This was the one book from last week which was GOOD. I’ve been reading this book from July, but I was crawling through it because the pace was very slow until 3/4ths of the book. Last week, I was determined to finish it and hence I quickly finished the book. And it made so much of an impact on me.
Educated was a heard read for me. It became harder every time i remembered that it’s a memoir, and everything here is TRUE. And then I would admire the author because she has been through SO MUCH—physically, mentally, and emotionally—and she has managed to find her true self even though there was so much holding her back.
The one thing I can say with certainty is: this book is worth it. This book is worth powering through the slow parts and sticking through the hard parts, even when they were too gruesome and detailed. Knowing Tara Westover’s journey is worth it.
What do you think you will read next?
Probably Rebel by Marie Lu, which released yesterday. I’ve been WAITING for this book, and I have already reread the first three books in preparation to directly dive into Rebel.
After that, I might read Five Dark Fates by Kandare Blake. This is also a new release, and it’s the fourth book in the Three Dark Crowns series. I can’t wait to finish this series lol. Ever since they extended it from two books to four, and the author is hastily dragging on the story, I’m not very interested in it. I just want to know the ending at this point.
I hope you’ve been having a great day so far. I’m spending my Sunday trying to study for my tests tomorrow. The first test tomorrow is on Advanced Computer Architecture which has tons of complicated diagrams and while I have photographic memory, there are just too many diagrams to keep track of perfectly.
I’m taking a short break from studying to write this post. My week has been pretty uneventful but there are a few things I can update you on.
I tried out VSCO editing again! I actually tried it once a couple years back but I just couldn’t figure it out, and it wasn’t working with my style. I also mainly took VSCO for Instagram, and my style was VERY DIFFERENT back then.
I was seeing random videos on YouTube and saw this one on VSCO girls. I did not know that that’s a term and I still don’t know what it means, but the video’s pictures got me wanting to try VSCO again.
Since I was still completely not sure on how to use the app, I turned to Pinterest for “editing recipes”, which are basically some specific settings to get a kind of edit. I even made a board with all the recipes I like which use the free filters. I tried out a LOT of edits, even asking my friends for random pictures and editing them. After a few days of trials, I can day that I’ve now grasped how to use it and I’ve figured out what I like.
While VSCO is good, I don’t think VSCO is for my current Instagram theme. I do want to try out a whole theme with the app, but not just yet. I’ll probably attempt it once I get a new phone with a better camera. My current cam is… not great.
My best friends were craving pizza last night and begged me to take a cheat day from my gluten free diet to have pizza with them. It’s been a long time since I last had food with gluten, and my best friends and I only have pizza with each other (it’s kind of like a tradition), so I broke my diet for the night. I did have lesser pizza than them and had rice as my dinner, but it’s still a break from my diet. I don’t regret it at all.
WHAT I READ
I read three books this week. It was a pretty good week, considering I was still blogging, going to college everyday, and playing League of Legends.
The first book I read last week was Girls of Paper and Fire by Natasha Ngan. Not gonna lie, I was IMPRESSED. The world building, the characters, the circumstances and the relationships—all of them were great. At some points the book did feel a little slow sometimes but that’s okay.
I rated the book 4/5 stars and not a total 5 because the ending was disappointing. Anticipation was built up right from the start for the ending and it just fell flat. I’ll write a review for this book pretty soon, so watch out for that.
My second read of the week was Aurora Rising by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman. I actually started this book MONTHS back in a bookstore+cafe. I kept wanting to go back and read it entirely in the hardback copy, which was beautiful, but I couldn’t find the time to go. I finally caved and read the ebook this week.
This book… has it’s pluses and minuses. I wasn’t very impressed by it, but I did like parts of it. I enjoyed the story concept and every individual character. The whole concept of this series is that a ragtag bunch of kids are put together in a squad and circumstances require them to become heroes together. The squad is the thing that I’m most conflicted about. I like that they start to form friendships and get along but I also felt like the camaraderie was forced in dialogue. I’ll explain more when I write a complete review on this book.
My last read of the week, which I finished last night, was Long Shot by Kennedy Ryan. I was introduced to this book by Kat @ Reading After Ten. Her review of the book intrigued me. While I got the book a while back, I didn’t it pick it up until this week because Kat mentioned that it is a hard read. I wanted to be in the right frame of mind to read it.
Now that I’ve finished the book, I agree with Kat. This book is a hard read, but it is totally worth it. Our female lead Iris goes through a LOT in this book and all of it is shown in raw truth, not sugar-coated at all. Kennedy Ryan interviewed multiple women who have survived through domestic abuse and has done them justice by showing the hard truths. I say read the book, if not for the romance, for Iris’s journey.
I will definitely be writing a review on this book as well. I have to.
I read faster that I can review, and it’s definitely going to be a problem with the books I read this week. I’ll do my best to review these ASAP.
And that’s all I have to say this week. I will see you in my next post. Have a great week!
Tag at least one other person to do this tag but really, you don’t need to be tagged to do this post, anyone can.
Pingback the person who tagged you so they can see the post.
THE NOVEL THAT STARTED YOUR LOVE FOR BOOKS
I don’t know if y’all will know them but I loved the Chacha Chaudhary comic books that I mum always got for me when she went to Delhi. here was another as well who’s name I can’t recall at the moment. After a library opened up nearby only did I move on to proper novels.
A POPULAR NOVEL THAT DESERVES THE HYPE
The Hating Game by Sally Thorne! Definitely deserved the hype. I loved it ❤
Can someone tell me how and where half the year has gone by? Because I’m really confused. I even finished another semester of classes! Last year around this time I found what Blink-182 actually means, and it’s so true. 182 days (half the year) passes by in what seems like a blink.
I didn’t do this tag last year because by the time I found time to blog, it was already pretty late. I did do it in 2016, though, and I found it to be the perfect tag to record and update your reading.
I have my Goodreads reading challenge open, ready to answer, so let’s get to it!
1. Best book you’ve read this year?
The Hate U Giveby Angie Thomas, hands down! What a good book! I totally get the hype it’s been having ever since before it’s release. It’s an amazing book about Black Lives Matter following a girl called Starr after she witnesses her unarmed best friend being shot by a policeman.
Honestly I haven’t read many sequels, especially considering I’m still my book slump from March*. I’ll say Leah On The Offbeat by Becky Albertalli because despite my mixed feelings about it, it’s the best sequel I’ve read so far.
*I’m not worried, though. I’m sure once the kdrama obsession goes down, I’ll be back to books.
3. New release you haven’t read yet but want to?
Definitely choosing A Thousand Perfect Notesby C.G. Drews for this one! She’s an awesome blogger whom I’ve been following for over a year. Her taste in books is brilliant, her writing is really cool and her personality speaks to me. I know for a fact that I’ll love her book and I cannot wait to get to it.
4. Most anticipated release for the second half of the year?
Queen of Air and Darkness by Cassandra Clare! It was initially slated for a 2019 release (which BROKE my heart because I finished reading Lord of Shadows right after it’s release in 2017) but later was preponed to mid-2018. But I checked again and now it says December 2018 so let’s hope it does release because I NEED it like I need air.
5. Biggest disappointment?
A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas is one of my favourite books currently. I didn’t like A Court of Thorns and Roses (book 1) so I was really surprised that I liked book 2. A Court of Wings and Ruin was a small disappointment but it was okay.
Now, A Court of Frost and Starlight was supposed to be EPIC but it crashed down on me like ice rain. I gave it 2 stars and that’s hardly. I kinda hated it.
From time to time, especially since my romance phase last year, I check out New Adult new releases and read if something sounds really good.
I read From Lukov, With Love by Mariana Zapata purely because the MC* is a figure skater. I watched the movie Ice Princess and I was totally enthralled by this new thing called figure skating (which I’d heard of didn’t really know about).
I liked the relationship growth the most but I also liked the MC’s determination.
Dhonielle Clayton, author of The Belles. I read it because of the hype and fell in love with the world! The idea is super nice. It tackles body issues in a new way and also portrays it in a fantasy world!
Love, Simon definitely! I watched it recently and it gave me all the feels.
I do have a few mixed feelings, though. I didn’t like a couple very key things that they changed from the book which were things that made me love the book more. So, yeah. I’ll probably write a post about the movie soon, once I have the time.
13. Favourite post you have done so far?
I really like my review on While You Were Sleeping, a Koream drama. It’s the first one I watched and the one that got me into Kdramas. It’s also super nice so I spent a lot of time on the review and I’m quite proud of it.
I bought Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi and The Night circus by Erin Morgernstern recently and I absolutely LOVE their covers! I can’t choose one between them, nope.
15. What books do you need to read by the end of the year?
Well, I have a lot but I don’t usually keep TBRs or set what books to read because I’m a mood reader. A VERY moody mood reader. My mood is what decides what I read and hence I also end up reading multiple books at once depending on my moods throughout the day.