Monthly Review

Monthly Review: August 2017

Sooooooo the blog got another makeover. I wanted to take time to make more custom graphics for the headers and give the blog a cleaner design that is easier to navigate. Comments, tags, and categories are now much more visible. I’m in the process of reformatting and cleaning up old posts to match as well. I also finally got jetpack working so I was able to put up a wordpress follow button on my blog, so wordpress users can get updates much easier. I’m undecided if I want to make a header image or stick with the pink stripe I have up top, as of right now I’m quite happy with the design as it more closely matches the kind of design I’ve always wanted for this blog, now that I have learned how to use WordPress a little better.

Another bit of blogging news, so I’ve decided to up my posting schedule again to three days a week. Posts will now go up every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday on top of the usual end of the month Monthly Review. I decided to do this after I ended up with three pages of reviews sitting in my drafts and no clear plan for when I was going to schedule them because the posting schedule is all booked. That and the fact that I’ve started writing some non-review posts, I can finally say that I read and write enough to warrant the change. I think three times a week is fair, since it is still plenty of content without being overwhelming.

So I took a shopping trip to Barnes & Noble this month. I had won a gift card from a giveaway and I thought it’d be nice to take a trip since I hadn’t stepped into a physical book store in quite some time. I decided to do things the way I did before I became a book blogger and would have a laundry list of authors and books to find and pick up – I went in blind. I went through the sale racks and picked up eye catching books by authors that I had never heard of at all.

I’ve also joined another blog tour for October! I’m so thankful to have gotten a spot on this tour as this is a book that I have had my eye on for a while. I plan on binge reading horror books the whole month and already have a glorious little pile starting to take shape.

Now that we’ve reached the end of summer it also means that the 20 Books of Summer is over! I strayed a lot from my original planned list, especially around the end of summer, but I completed my goal of reading 20+ books. Hooray!

Last but not least, I have a giveaway running here for a chance to win a paperback copy of a book I recently read and loved, When the Scoundrel Sins. The giveaway will be running for a few more days until Monday next week, so be sure to hop on it!

This Month’s Posts

Book Reviews

Other Writing

What I’ve Read






Book Haul

Book Box / Gift


First to Read


Kindle First


Kindle Scout



So this is a bit of a wild one since I don’t recall winning The Resurrection of Joan Ashby and couldn’t find any DMs or notifications anywhere that I had, so I was really surprised when a paperback ARC of this book showed up on my doorstep! I also won a giveaway copy of Afterparty from a BookTuber that I follow, Kat @ Kat’s Book End, thank you so much!

I also won a lovely giveaway from author Alyssa Alexander as part of an Entangled Romance Facebook party. She kindly sent me a mug, some stationary, chocolates, and a gift card to Barnes & Noble, thank you so much! I haven’t been in an actual physical book store in a long time, seems weird right? I usually read ebooks, eARCs, and library books. When I do happen to buy books I usually order them online during sales. So it was nice to step into a real book store for once and just browse the shelves, not really knowing what I’m going to find. I also won another Entangled giveaway, this time from Tara Kingston for an ARC of Pamela Mingle‘s new book, A Lady’s Deception.

Around The Web


Brevity Is the Soul of It: In Praise of Short Books (The Millions)
Did This Book Buy Its Way Onto The New York Times Bestseller List? (Pajiba)
‘Handbook For Mortals’ Author Accuses YA Community Of Keeping Out New Voices (Huffington Post)
Handbook for Mortals: A YA literary agent breaks down the drama (Entertainment Weekly)
Stop dissing romance novels already (The Washington Post)
The Brief, Tumultuous Reign Of An Erstwhile Best-Seller (NPR)
Voyage to the Otherworld: A New Eulogy for Ray Bradbury by Margaret Atwood (The Paris Review)


Do I Rate 90% Of Books 4 Stars, Or What?? (Avalinah’s Books)
How to be an ally of autistic people (Janepedia)
Pet Peeves #2: Individualized Promotion (Let the Pages Reign)
How to Get People to Read Your Book Blog (Dubious Methods Included) (Paper Fury)


Books Everyone Else Hates But I Love (Kate’s Book Date)
LGBTQ+ Reads | Top 5 Wednesday (Thoughts on Tomes)
Margaret Atwood Interview with Mike McManus, 1975 (The Education of Mike McManus)
My Favourite Fairy Tale Retellings (Jean Bookishthoughts)
Mystery/Thriller Mashup Review!!! (Bookables)
Problems Only Book Lovers Understand (BuzzFeedViolet)

This month has seen a pretty crazy controversy unfold involving a brand new publishing house and author scamming their way to the top of the NYT Bestseller’s list. I ended up linking a couple of articles about it because I just found the whole thing so interesting. I was pretty mad about it when I saw the initial report from Pajiba especially since I had just finished reading The Hate U Give that same morning. It seems that I wasn’t the only one and I was happy to see the YA book community come together to investigate. Nobody likes to be scammed and the book community is full of intelligent, passionate people, it’s not so easy to pull the hood over our eyes. The gall of this author trying to claim success while insulting the book community shows how much of a farce this whole thing is.

In terms of non-drama links, I ran into an old interview from 1975 with Margaret Atwood, then 36, talking about her first two novels. It was an absolute delight for me and I thought it would be nice to share.

Reading Next Month

I’ve finally gotten a handle on my library check outs and will be reading two that I picked up early next month. I have a couple of ARCs to get to as well, though I’m not sure which ones and in what order yet, so these are the two books that I will guaranteed be reading. I’ve been in the mood for short stories for a while now, and I’ve been feeling awful that there are so many incredibly popular authors whose works I have not gotten around to reading yet, so I think that Because You Love to Hate Me will really fulfill both of those needs for me. As for The Wood, I first saw this book last year and it sounds like it’s exactly up my alley. PLUS look at that cover! I can’t wait to jump into this one.


  1. Evelina

    Your blog looks great 🙂 love the pink. My blog is totally misbehaving – it decided to have all the text in bold from now on. It’s pretty tragic ;_; I hope my friends help me figure it out, cause I’m totally baffled.
    Followed you on WordPress! Yeah, Jetpack is important. Although I’m still struggling with some stuff regarding it. Meh, technological issues…
    And those boxies look soooo good!
    You got The Girl In The Tower too! I was anticipating that one a lot, and I ALMOST missed it! I can’t believe that, really glad a friend told me it was up on NetGalley finally.
    Thanks for sharing my post!!! Ironically… After I wrote that, I got into a streak of rating things 2-3 stars a lot xD must’ve jinxed it, lol. You’re sharing really good links though! Couldn’t resist clicking, although I am not sure my eyes agree with me on the subject of reading anything on a screen today anymore xD although that Atwood interview also sounds very interesting…

    1. OMG YES I’ve been waiting on The Girl in the Tower for months and I freaked out when I got an email from the publisher offering an ARC for it.

      Also thanks, I’m glad you enjoy the links. 🙂 Bad luck that your reads lately have been 2-3 stars, I’ve had a few recently myself. They’re just trying to put me into a reading slump!

      I hope you get your layout issues worked out soon! If I had to guess, maybe a stray < strong > tag is somewhere in a widget?

  2. I love the new design! It looks fantastic and very professional. 🙂 It seems like August was quite a good month for you. I’m glad to see you liked THUG! It’s such a wonderful book and one that’s really important. I’m also happy to see that you liked Bad Romance. I haven’t read it yet myself, but I definitely want to check it out. I’ve seen surprisingly little about it from other bloggers. Anyway, I hope you have a great September! 🙂

    1. Thanks Kourtni! THUG was so good, it’s definitely my top read of the month and possibly overall for the year. Bad Romance is was really well done, I’m surprised that more bloggers aren’t talking about it given the subject matter! It’s definitely a book that could help a lot of folks in recognizing unhealthy relationships. I hope you have a great September as well!

  3. Funny about a book store but it makes sense! I don’t know when I BOUGHT a book from a bookstore, but I know I’ve been in Barnes and Noble often. I like to try and see a book before buying a physical copy. Especially kid books, so if it isn’t at the library, I check local bookstores. They usually don’t have it. lol

    Thanks for the NYT Bestseller Article. That is really interesting. It makes me think a little about how I found out that Scientologists will write glowing reviews for L Ron Hubbard’s books on Amazon and Goodreads to try and keep the star ratings up.

    1. I can definitely understand that, when it comes to children’s books I always try to check if there are previews on Amazon or look up to see if there are any scans of pages on Google to help decide what books I’d like to get for the little ones. 🙂 When I went to Barnes & Noble last I definitely took notes on books that were too expensive, went home and checked if it was available at the library. I’m lucky that my library system is pretty decent and they seem to have most things available.

      I had never considered that that was the case for Hubbard’s books, I had noticed that his books are always highly rated and thought it odd, but I usually just shrugged it off. That’s kind of funny but also a little sad that they have to do that though.

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