Top Ten Tuesday October 16: Bookstores/Libraries I’ve Always Wanted to Visit

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish.

Updates are now at That Artsy Reader Girl.

October 16: Bookstores/Libraries I’ve Always Wanted to Visit

1)Bodleian Library. The Bodleian Library is the main research library of the University of Oxford, and is one of the oldest libraries in Europe. With over 12 million items, it is the second-largest library in Britain after the British Library.

I have been to Oxford, but I didn’t get to go inside the Bodleian. Next time I am there I am taking a tour and I’ll keep an eye out for witches, vampires, daemons and Ashmole 782.


2) British Library
This was on my list of places to visit when I went on my big trip to London with friends, but we ran out of time. So, next time I am back there I don’t want to make anymore excuses not to go.

3) The Library of Trinity College Dublin.
I feel like if I were lucky enough to visit this place I would pretend I was Hermione in the library at Hogwarts.

4) Library of Congress.
Though I have never been to D.C., this is probably the easiest one for me to visit besides the New York Public Library, which I have been to many times. I feel that it is a must when visiting D.C.

There are many other libraries I’d love to visit to. A few I saw on Buzz Feed.


Top Ten Tuesday: October 9: Longest Books I’ve Ever Read

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish.

Updates are now at That Artsy Reader Girl.

What constitutes a long book? I think that depends on the reader. A person who doesn’t read much may say anything over 200 pages is long. But to someone who reads 50 books or more a year, they may say it’s anything over 600.

To keep this list reasonable and in the realm of 10 books I am sticking with anything over 500 pages.I’ll do this in order of page numbers, which means I am not grouping trilogies or series together.

Continue reading

Top Ten Tuesday September 25: Books By My Favorite Authors That I Still Haven’t Read

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish.

Updates are now at That Artsy Reader Girl.

September 25: Books By My Favorite Authors That I Still Haven’t Read

1) Maureen Johnston. While I really wish she’d complete the Shades of London series, I also want to read Truly Devious

2) “Robert Galbraith” a.k.a. J.K. Rowling. I have had the The Cuckoo’s Calling on my TBR pile since it was revealed that Galbraith is really Rowling. Just keep putting it off. Now I am too busy listening to the Harry Potter audiobooks since it it the 20th anniversary.

3) Ruta Sepetys, Out of the Easy. I love her other two books Between Shades of Gray and Salt to the Sea. Two of my favorite historical fiction stories, so I should move this up the TBR pile.

4) Scott Sigler, Alone. I bought it around the time it was first released and it’s the conclusion of The Generations Trilogy. I’ll have to review my notes of the first two to refresh my memory.

5) Jane Austen. I have only read and listened to Pride and Prejudice. I want to read or listen to all her other books. Especially Emma, which Clueless is based on.

Top Ten Tuesday September 18: Books On My Fall 2018 TBR

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish.

Updates are now at That Artsy Reader Girl.

September 18: Books On My Fall 2018 TBR

Currently I am revisiting the Harry Potter series. I have been listening to them on Audible and am currently midway through Order of the Phoenix.

I’ll continue till I finish Deathly Hallows, but also today I will start reading…

1) Time’s Convert by Deborah Harkness

I also want to finish my NYCC 2017 TBR pile.

2) Year Zero by Rob Reid

3) After On by Rob Reid

4) Age of Myth The Legends of the First Empire 1 by Michael J. Sullivan

5) Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel

I also plan to listen to a bunch of scary themed books in October. This is very ambitious and I don’t think I’ll really get through all of these, but here is my list anyway.

6) The Shining by Stephen King

7) Doctor Sleep by Stephen King

8) Nos4a2 by Joe Hill

9) Dracula by Bram Stoker
I tried reading this once and gave up after 40 pages. But I saw B. J. Harrison narrates the audiobook and since I loved his narration of The Count of Monte Cristo I thought he could make Dracula interesting.

10) I am Legend by Richard Matheson
I read it before and downloaded the audiobook.

11) Frankenstein: or, The Modern Prometheus by Mary Wolstonecraft Shelley.
I read this in high school and want to revisit the original story.

This is very ambitious of me already but we’ll see. After all I will post the reviews.

Top Ten Tuesday September 4: Bingeworthy TV Shows

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish.

Updates are now at That Artsy Reader Girl.

September 4: Bingeworthy TV Shows/Movies (The new fall TV season is starting up this month, so let’s talk about what shows everyone should watch when they’re not reading!)

I am not much of a binger. In fact, I am trying to cut down my TV schedule to have more time to read, listen to audiobooks and work on my artwork.

These are the few shows I have binged.

1. The Crown – Netflix, currently two seasons.
I am going to miss Claire Foy and Matt Smith. They had the best chemistry. And John Lithgow in the first season as PM Churchill was the best unexpected perfect casting I have ever seen. And Queen Elizabeth’s and Princess Margaret’s costumes… divine.

2. Stranger Things – Netflix, currently two seasons.
I love all the 1980s references. And it’s a great suspense story.

3. Westworld – HBO, currently two seasons.
I binged the first season when I had HBO. Loved that twist! Did not see that coming! Now that I don’t have HBO anymore I have to find time to get the free trial of the app to binge season 2.

4. Battlestar Galactica (2004 TV series) – Sci-Fi, Ended with 4 seasons.
This was my first binge! I caught the season 1 finale on TV and was intrigued. Then I started watching the second season but was confused so I waited. The I got the DVDs for the first season and binged to catch up. It was a great mix of sci-fi, action, mythology, politics, and drama. I have all the season on DVD and always say I am going to do a rewatch binge but then get too busy. One day.

5. Star Wars: The Clone Wars – Cartoon Network, Netflix, Disney Streaming. Ended with 6 seasons.
It’s coming back!!!! It was prematurely cancelled when Disney took over prompting the hashtag Save The Clone Wars. Well it worked and in 2019 we’ll get 12 new episodes of Season 7 to be released on Disney’s direct-to-consumer streaming service.

So I better plan a binge rewatch of the first 6 seasons plus the Lost Episodes!

6. Star Wars: Rebels – Disney XD – Ended with 4 seasons.
I did not appreciate this show so much in the beginning. I was still angry The Clone Wars was cancelled, but I grew to love the characters. Especially Hera and Sabine, who are strong female characters. I feel I should go back and watch the early episodes to relive all the characters’ developments.

7. Looking forward to binging A Discovery of Witches – Sundance Streaming in the US, Currently 1 season.

In September this will air in the UK on Sky One. In the US we have to wait until early 2019 where it will stream on a Sundance TV service. I really want to see it so maybe I can get a free trial. All 8 episodes will be available at once.

Top Ten Tuesday August 28: Back to School

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish.

Updates are now at That Artsy Reader Girl.

August 28: Back to School/Learning Freebie (in honor of school starting back up soon, come up with your own topic that fits the theme of school or learning! Books that take place at school/boarding school/during study abroad, books you read in school, textbooks you liked/didn’t like, non-fiction books you loved or want to read, etc

Top 10 Books I Read in High School that Left a Lasting Impression.

1. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger. Freshmen year – Term 1.
I don’t really remember the plot so well. My friend who loved it in high school says it does not hold up when she read it as an adult. But the reason why I find it so memorable is because of what happened when I was taking an exam for the book. I was writing the essay portion when my teacher came in to announce that O.J. Simpson was acquitted for the murder of Nicole and Ron. I was furious. The rest of my class was ecstatic.

2. The Cask of Amontillado by Edgar Allan Poe. Freshmen year – Term 2.
This is my favorite Poe story. I love the revenge trick. My teacher was such a cool lady too. She was a fan of the 1960’s soap opera Dark Shadows, which I watched reruns with my mom as a very young girl and then watched again when I was in HS on the Sci-Fi network. She told the class that many of Poe’s story elements influenced other Gothic stories, such as Dark Shadows. (Barnabas chained Rev. Trask in a cellar and walled him up behind bricks).

3. Lord of the Flies by William Golding. Sophomore year – Term 2.
I read this as an adult too, around the time LOST first aired, since they have similar themes, and the story does hold up. It’s very much about instinct and human nature in a very primal form.

4. The Crucible by Arthur Miller. Junior Year – Term 1.
This is my absolute favorite play. It’s a look at what happens in society when you let your jealousies and prejudices take over actual facts. I saw the movie in HS for comparison and it is terrible. It would be years later when I got to see it performed live. Once in London with Richard Armitage as John Proctor. Then in NYC with Saoirse Ronan as Abigail.

5. The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane. Junior Year – Term 1
I hated this book. It is written in the vernacular of a Southern American accent. It’s impossible to understand. This was the first time I gave up reading a book for school and only used the Cliff’s Notes to do my homework and pass the exam.

6. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. Junior Year – Term 2.
I had a cool teacher for this term, though I didn’t appreciate her at the time. I was a bit afraid of her. Thought she was a real life witch because she was so quirky and peculiar. It was her M.O. to assign group projects to learn about American culture of different decades.
While reading TGG we learned about American life in the 1920s. Each group focused on a different research topic: fashion, current events, food, radio and/or tv programs, and I think the last one was books. Interior decorating? Or many the work force? I forgot.
And we presented our findings to the class in form of a skit.

As for the book itself, it still holds up when I read it as an adult, and the Baz Luhrmann film is a great adaptation.

7. A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway. Senior Year – Term 1.
Hemingway is way too depressing and boring. After reading this and hearing my sister complain about Old Man and the Sea I know Hemingway is not for me. Never again.

8. MacBeth by William Shakespeare. Senior Year – Term 1.
I loved the witches! “Double, double toil and trouble; Fire burn, and caldron bubble.”
And Lady MacBeth: “Out, damned spot! out, I say!”

9. Othello by William Shakespeare. Senior Year – Term 2.
Don’t believe a word Iago says!

The only other Shakespeare I read in HS was Julius Caesar, which I also loved. I think I was one of the few to never be assigned Romeo and Juliet.

10. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. Senior Year – Term 2.
I don’t think I really appreciated this at the time. I loved the premises but felt the writing was slow and a bit boring. But I want to give it a second try. I plan to listen to an audiobook of it soon.

Top Ten Tuesday – July 24: Books with Sensory Reading Memories

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish.

Updates are now at That Artsy Reader Girl.

July 24: Books with Sensory Reading Memories (where I was, what time of year it was, who I was with, what I was eating, etc.)

This is an interesting topic but there are only so many places I can list without it being repetitive. Mostly I read either during my commute, or at my grandma’s house on the weekend; and if it’s an audiobook I am either commuting, cleaning, or drawing/coloring. I feel this is going to be a short list of books that stand out the most, and it’s categorize by location or activity.


Grandma’s house:
I have read countless books at grandma’s house but these are two that really stand out to me.

1. The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsle.
Ironically I was reading this in August and I remember sitting in my grandmother’s yard on a beautiful day. I was crying as I was reading the end.

2) Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West by Gregory Maguire.
I remember going to read in one of the bedrooms because my family was so loud that I couldn’t concentrate. There is world building and politics involved and I was just like, “SHHHHH!”
It has been over ten years since I read this and would love to reread it.

Coloring in my Johanna Basford 16 month planner:

3) The Count of Monte Cristo, by Alexandre Dumas, Narrated by B.J. Harrison; 52 hours; February 11-April 24, 2018
Most of those hours were spent coloring.

4&5) The Tell-Tale Heart & The Cask of Amontillado by Edgar Allan Poe, Narrated by B.J. Harrison. Each story is 15 minutes. Great when you want to be creative but are on limited time. Listening to these stories is like a set timer.

Sometimes you need to kill two birds with one stone.

6) Catalyst: A Rogue One Story, by James Luceno, Narrated by Jonathan Davi; 11 hours 15 minutes.

7) Never Broken: Songs Are Only Half the Story, by Jewel, Narrated by Jewel; 10h 21m.

8) Thrawn by Timothy Zahn, Marc Thompson (Narrator); 17 hours.

In my bed:

9) Morning Star, by Pierce Brown.
The night before the book signing I was 50 pages away from finishing. I read 100 pages on Sunday and another 100 pages on Monday. By Monday night my right eye was blood shot.

10) Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austin, Narrated by Rosamund Pike; 11h 35m.
Sometimes I just want to lie in bed and do nothing but relive a lovable classic story.