Friday, April 30, 2021

Monthly Wrap-Up: April 2021


This month has been insane. You may or may not have noticed that I have not been doing my Sunday Posts lately... no real reason except that I haven't had the inspiration to write them. But I have updates: earlier this month we had a windstorm the blew roofing stuff over from the neighbors roof, over our fence, and landed right on my car 🤦‍♀️ It wasn't terribly damaged, thankfully, but it did have a bunch of scratches here and there, so my car was getting repairs done for like two weeks. I literally just went and got my car back yesterday!

Even worse, that same weekend our water heater decided it didn't want to work anymore and decided to make a mess on its way out by flooding our kitchen. There's a bit of water damage so they ripped up the flooring and we have no kitchen... all we have is a stove. It's been real fun over here 🙃 So yeah, I may have gotten my car back looking like new, but our house is still a bloody mess 😩 Anyway, onto the books!

Thursday, April 29, 2021

Review: Stalking Shadows (Scary Mary #2) by S.A. Hunter

Title: Stalking Shadows

Series: Scary Mary #2

Previous book in this series: Scary Mary

Author: S.A. Hunter

Publication date: October 2011

Published by: S.A. Hunter

Source: Purchased ebook

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Synopsis: Mary’s back, and she has to save Vicky from a supernatural threat. Helping her nemesis is the last thing Mary would choose, but she may be the only one able to save the cheerleader.

While on a date, Vicky gets into a car wreck that leaves her in a coma. Through dreams, she reaches out to Mary for help. Mary isn’t happy to help her, but she’s willing to do almost anything to get the cheerleader out of her head. All Vicky can tell her is that something is clawing at her.

My rating: ★★★★☆

Mean girl Vicky is in a coma and has reached out to Mary via dreams for her help. Crazy, right?

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Review - Japanese: An Essential Guide to Japanese Language Learning by Language Learning University & Takata Ei

Title: Japanese: An Essential Guide to Japanese Language Learning by Language Learning University

Authors: Language Learning University, Takata Ei

Publication date: March 2018

Published by: Language Learning University

Source: Borrowed audiobook from library

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Buy it: Amazon | Book Depository | Thrift Books

Synopsis: This book is for those who want an easy-to-follow guide that will make learning the Japanese language both fun and simple. This book is specifically created for travelers, students, and businesspeople who visit Japan.

Whether you're a just starting out or are already familiar with the Japanese language, this book will help you with speaking, writing and understanding Japanese!

My rating: ★★★★☆

So I did this fun board game where I landed on a square that required me to read an audiobook. I have also really been slacking in my Japanese studies lately, so I thought I could kill two birds with one stone with this book. And it wasn’t too bad! It was a very quick listen and it was very helpful.

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Review: My Last Words (Bleach #72) by Tite Kubo

Title: My Last Words

Series: Bleach #72

Author: Tite Kubo

Publication date: March 2018

Published by: VIZ Media

Source: Borrowed from library

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Synopsis: As the war between the Soul Reapers and Quincies heads for a climactic ending, Kyoraku and Nanao battle against a bizarre enemy calling himself a god. And as Ichigo heads for Yhwach's fortress, he'll need the help of his friends if he hopes to succeed.

My rating: ★★★★★

We start off the volume with the end of Nano’s fight, which was incredible! I loved it! It was so great to see her finally use her zanpakuto.

Friday, April 23, 2021

Review: The Boyfriend (Point Horror) by R.L. Stine

Title: The Boyfriend

Series: Point Horror

Author: R.L. Stine

Publication date: October 1990

Published by: Scholastic

Source: Purchased paperback

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Synopsis: Sometimes, love is murder.

Too bad about Dex. He was in love with Joanna. She broke up with him. And then he died.

Joanna's sorry, of course. But it's not her fault he's dead, is it? Besides, she never loved him. Boys are just toys, to be used and thrown away.

But this time, Joanna's gone too far. Because Dex is back. From the dead. For one last date with her...

My rating: ★★☆☆☆

This book was... well, it was predictable, for one. It also had a very unlikable main character, which I think was the point. Unfortunately, she wasn’t as fun as Reva Dalby from Silent Night.

Thursday, April 22, 2021

Review: Scary Mary by S.A. Hunter

Title: Scary Mary

Series: Scary Mary #1

Author: S.A. Hunter

Publication date: August 2010

Published by: S.A. Hunter

Source: Amazon Freebie

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Synopsis: Mary has always been different. She’d like to be normal, but being able to hear ghosts means she’ll never be like everyone else. She starts her junior year of high school hoping to be left alone, but Cyrus Asher is new and doesn’t know or seem to care that she’s a freak. They start hanging out and all is well until she goes over to his house. Cy’s house is haunted, and not by Casper, the friendly ghost.

But it’s not the ghost that ruins the evening. That honor belongs to Vicky “The Hickey” Nelson with her borrowed Ouija board and stuck-up friends. They make Mary so angry that she uses the ghost to scare everybody, including Cy. He throws her out and Mary thinks she’s lost whatever chance she had with him. But there’s still the ghost to deal with. He’s nasty, mean, and possibly homicidal. Mary has to get rid of the ghost or Cy and his family could be hurt. Or worse.

My rating: ★★★★★

This book was SO good for it being a freebie! It was a lot of fun!

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Review: Dating Makes Perfect by Pintip Dunn

Title: Dating Makes Perfect

Author: Pintip Dunn

Publication date: August 2020

Published by: Entangled Teen

Source: Purchased ebook

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Synopsis: The Tech sisters don’t date in high school. Not because they’re not asked. Not because they’re not interested. Not even because no one can pronounce their long, Thai last name—hence the shortened, awkward moniker. But simply because they’re not allowed.

Until now.

In a move that other Asian American girls know all too well, six months after the older Tech twins got to college, their parents asked, “Why aren’t you engaged yet?” The sisters retaliated by vowing that they won’t marry for ten (maybe even twenty!) years, not until they’ve had lots of the dating practice that they didn’t get in high school.

In a shocking war on the status quo, her parents now insist that their youngest daughter, Orrawin (aka “Winnie”), must practice fake dating in high school. Under their watchful eyes, of course—and organized based on their favorite rom-coms. ’Cause that won’t end in disaster.

The first candidate? The son of their longtime friends, Mat Songsomboon—arrogant, infuriating, and way too good-looking. Winnie’s known him since they were toddlers throwing sticky rice balls at each other. And her parents love him.

If only he weren’t her sworn enemy.

My rating: ★★★★☆

This book was SO cute! This is actually the second contemporary book in a row that I have read in 2021 😱 I always say that this genre is my least favorite, but here I am enjoying this book like no ones business 🤷‍♀️😂

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Review: Baby, Hold Your Hand (Bleach #71) by Tite Kubo

Title: Baby, Hold Your Hand

Series: Bleach #71

Author: Tite Kubo

Publication date: November 2017

Published by: VIZ Media

Source: Borrowed from library

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Synopsis: As Mayuri struggles against the monstrosity that is Pernida, his daughter Nemu joins the battle. For the first time, Nemu disobeys Mayuri's orders and acts on her own. But will it be her final act? Meanwhile, Kyoraku faces his own demons...

My rating: ★★★★★

And we are continuing right on with a bit more Nemu in this one! She is just great! I love her! Her fight in this volume... she gave it all she had and it was awesome! It was such a cool fight!

Friday, April 16, 2021

Review: Instant Karma by Marissa Meyer

Title: Instant Karma

Author: Marissa Meyer

Publication date: November 2020

Published by: Feiwel & Friends

Source: Purchased hardcover

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Synopsis: Chronic overachiever Prudence Barnett is always quick to cast judgment on the lazy, rude, and arrogant residents of her coastal town. Her dreams of karmic justice are fulfilled when, after a night out with her friends, she wakes up with the sudden ability to cast instant karma on those around her.

Pru giddily makes use of the power, punishing everyone from public vandals to mean gossips, but there is one person on whom her powers consistently backfire: Quint Erickson, her slacker of a lab partner. Quint is annoyingly cute and impressively noble, especially when it comes to his work with the rescue center for local sea animals.

When Pru resigns herself to working at the rescue center for extra credit, she begins to uncover truths about baby otters, environmental upheaval, and romantic crossed signals—not necessarily in that order. Her newfound karmic insights reveal how thin the line is between virtue and vanity, generosity and greed, love and hate... and fate.

My rating: ★★★★★

I’m the first one to admit that I’m not really a contemporary person—I’ve always just found them to be too everyday life. But over the years I’ve expanded my horizons and started reading some contemporaries, and I’ve actually enjoyed them! Who would’ve thought? Lol. And this book? It was the cutest freaking thing EVER! I loved it!

Thursday, April 15, 2021

Review: Horrorstör by Grady Hendrix

Title: Horrorstör

Author: Grady Hendrix

Publication date: September 2014

Published by: Quirk Books

Source: Borrowed from library

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Synopsis: Something strange is happening at the Orsk furniture superstore in Cleveland, Ohio. Every morning, employees arrive to find broken Kjerring bookshelves, shattered Glans water goblets, and smashed Liripip wardrobes. Sales are down, security cameras reveal nothing, and store managers are panicking.

To unravel the mystery, three employees volunteer to work a nine-hour dusk-till-dawn shift. In the dead of the night, they’ll patrol the empty showroom floor, investigate strange sights and sounds, and encounter horrors that defy the imagination.

A traditional haunted house story in a thoroughly contemporary setting, Horrorstör is designed to retain its luster and natural appearance for a lifetime of use. Pleasingly proportioned with generous French flaps and a softcover binding, Horrorstör delivers the psychological terror you need in the elegant package you deserve.

My rating: ★★★★☆

I really loved the idea of a haunted knock-off Ikea, and this book turned out to be quite enjoyable and very wacky. It was great!

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

Review: Jinx (Bigtime #3) by Jennifer Estep

Title: Jinx

Series: Bigtime #3

Previous books in this series: Karma Girl (#1) | Hot Mama (#2)

Author: Jennifer Estep

Publication date: December 2013 (first published August 2008)

Published by: Jennifer Estep (1st edition by Berkley)

Source: Purchased ebook

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Synopsis: Thanks to her unwanted superpower, fashion designer Bella Bulluci may be the luckiest woman in Bigtime, N.Y. But luck can be good or bad, and it seems like just as many embarrassing things happen to Bella as do positive ones.

Like when a charity event that Bella plans get crashed by Hangman, a deadly ubervillain who's after a prize sapphire that's on display. Hangman almost succeeds in stealing the jewel for his evil ubervillain boss, Prism, but Bella's luck helps her escape with the sapphire—along with some help from the suave and charming Debonair.

Debonair's not an ubervillain, but he's not really a superhero either. Still, Bella can't help but fall for him, despite her personal vow to have as little to do with heroes and villains as possible. But with Hangman and Prism still after the sapphire, Bella's going to need every bit of her luck power just to survive...

My rating: ★★★☆☆

Friends, me and this series are just not getting along. And this is very hard for me to admit because you know I love all things Jennifer Estep 😩 But I have to be honest! My main issue with this series is the instalove. If it wasn’t for that, I feel like I would enjoy it a lot more.

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Review: Friend (Bleach #70) by Tite Kubo

Title: Friend

Series: Bleach #70

Author: Tite Kubo

Publication date: July 2017

Published by: VIZ Media

Source: Borrowed from library

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Synopsis: Jugo and Bazz spent their childhood together, but their paths diverged once they met Yhwach. They now stand against each other as enemies, but what's truly in their hearts? Meanwhile, Kenpachi and Mayuri face off against the weirdest Quincy yet!

My rating: ★★★★★

In the last volume we saw some flashbacks from Haschwalth and Bazz-B, and in this one we get a bit more of that. We see them and their friendship and how they joined Yhwach. But now, in the present, these friends are fighting. In the flashbacks, Bazz-B was kind of a dick friend, but even then, seeing these two friends fight in the present was kind of sad. Which is something I never thought I would say, seeing as how they're the enemies and all. Lol.

Saturday, April 10, 2021

Most Read Authors (as of 2021)


Here are my most read authors as of this year! I first did this in 2015 then again in 2018, so it's turning out to be an every-3-years type of thing, just like my most owned authors. Lol. For this I also included books AND novellas, just because it's easier to do. I was going to include pictures, but honestly, as the years go on, it gets harder and harder to compile ALL the books... ESPECIALLY because Goodreads got rid of their handy Most Read Authors tool 😭 Sooo just trust me on the numbers 😅

For comparison purposes, here are the authors that made it onto my list 3 years ago:

5. Janet McNulty (13 books)
4. Rachel Vincent (15 books)
3. Rick Riordan (18 books)
2. Jennifer Estep (30 books)
1. R.L. Stine (44 books)

Friday, April 9, 2021

Review: First Date (Fear Street #16) by R.L. Stine

Title: First Date

Series: Fear Street #16

Author: R.L. Stine

Publication date: May 1992

Published by: Archway Paperback

Source: Purchased paperback

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Synopsis: Dying for a Date...

Chelsea Richards is shy, lonely, and looking for love. She would give anything to finally go on a date. Soon there are two new boys in town, and both ask her out.

Too bad one of them is a crazed killer. Poor Chelsea. Will her first date also be her last?

My rating: ★★☆☆☆

This book was... interesting. So we have this girl who is relatively new in Shadyside and she has just gained the attention of two guys who just arrived in town as well. One of these guys is a psychopath with mommy issues. Unfortunately, Chelsea doesn’t know which one. And let me just say, if at any point you’re unsure about a guy and weather he has psychopathic tendencies, you run the other goddamn way! I'm not a fan of the trope where the girl is attracted to a bad boy but is also simultaneously scared of him. Like, what is up with that? If I am scared of a guy I am NOT going to stick around to find out whether he’s a killer or if he is just misunderstood but also a terrible person. And this is what Chelsea was like with one of the guys, Sparks. At first, Sparks was just a tough looking going, but soon we realize there’s more to him. At one point the guy doesn’t take no for an answer and I was like NOPE. Girl, you don’t need a guy like that in your life. As for the other guy Will, he was more shy and mysterious and Chelsea really liked him.

Thursday, April 8, 2021

Review: Alone by Cyn Balog

Title: Alone

Author: Cyn Balog

Publication date: November 2017

Published by: Sourcebooks Fire

Source: eARC from publisher via Netgalley

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Synopsis: When her mom inherits an old, crumbling mansion, Seda’s almost excited to spend the summer there. The grounds are beautiful and it’s fun to explore the sprawling house with its creepy rooms and secret passages. Except now her mom wants to renovate, rather than sell the estate—which means they're not going back to the city... or Seda's friends and school.

As the days grow shorter, Seda is filled with dread. They’re about to be cut off from the outside world, and she’s not sure she can handle the solitude or the darkness it brings out in her.

Then a group of teens get stranded near the mansion during a blizzard. Seda has no choice but to offer them shelter, even though she knows danger lurks in the dilapidated mansion—and in herself. And as the snow continues to fall, what Seda fears most is about to become her reality...

My rating: ★★★☆☆

I really loved the premise of this book, what with its potential ghost story. And I ended up really enjoying the ride and the atmosphere. But that ending... um, yikes 😬

Wednesday, April 7, 2021

Review: Blind Date (Point Horror) by R.L. Stine

Title: Blind Date

Series: Point Horror

Author: R.L. Stine

Publication date: July 1987

Published by: Scholastic

Source: Purchased paperback

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Synopsis: Kerry's had a very bad year. But now his luck has finally changed.

He's got a blind date with a girl who sounds really hot.

He can't wait. He knows this girl is going to be really different.

Kerry's right.

Because his blind date really is the girl of his dreams.

Or maybe his worst nightmares...

My rating: ★★★☆☆

Kerry had a pretty terrible year... or so he is told. He was in some sort of accident that involved his brother but he doesn’t remember it and no one has told him any specifics, for his own good I guess. But now Kerry has a blind date with some random girl who randomly calls him. Sounds like the start of a horror book... oh wait! 😂 He also started receiving threatening calls and ALL of these things may or may not be related.

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Review: Cress (The Lunar Chronicles #3) by Marissa Meyer

Title: Cress

Series: The Lunar Chronicles #3

Previous books in this series: Cinder (#1) | Scarlet (#2)

Previous novellas in this series: Glitches (#0.5) | The Little Android (#0.6) | The Queen's Army (#1.5)

Author: Marissa Meyer

Publication date: February 2014

Published by: Feiwel & Friends

Source: Purchased paperback

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Synopsis: In this third book in the Lunar Chronicles, Cinder and Captain Thorne are fugitives on the run, now with Scarlet and Wolf in tow. Together, they're plotting to overthrow Queen Levana and her army.

Their best hope lies with Cress, a girl imprisoned on a satellite since childhood who's only ever had her netscreens as company. All that screen time has made Cress an excellent hacker. Unfortunately, she's just received orders from Levana to track down Cinder and her handsome accomplice.

When a daring rescue of Cress goes awry, the group is separated. Cress finally has her freedom, but it comes at a higher price. Meanwhile, Queen Levana will let nothing prevent her marriage to Emperor Kai. Cress, Scarlet, and Cinder may not have signed up to save the world, but they may be the only hope the world has.

My rating: ★★★★★

So this book follows the beats of the Rapunzel fairy tale, with Cress being our Rapunzel. Poor Cress has been locked away in a freaking satellite in space for a long time! However, Thorne and Cinder launch a rescue mission to save her... but then things go all sorts of wrong 😬

Sunday, April 4, 2021

Sunday Post #268: Books Are Better Than People


Welcome to The Sunday Post hosted by Kimba @ Caffeinated Book Reviewer, where I talk about what is going on in life and the blog, and show you all the bookish things I got that week!


Saturday, April 3, 2021

Top Authors I Own the Most Books From (as of 2021)!


I love doing this type of post! I don't do it very often though. I first did it in 2015 then again in 2018, so it's more of an every-3-years type of thing apparently. Lol. I included books AND novellas, just because I find it easier if I do it like that.

For comparison purposes, here are the authors that made it onto my list 3 years ago:

5. Jennifer Estep (15 books)
4. Cassandra Clare (16 books)
3. Janette Rallison (16 books) + C.J. Hill (6 books) = 22 total books
2. Rick Riordan (32 books)
1. R.L. Stine (125 books)

Friday, April 2, 2021

Review: Call Waiting (Point Horror) by R.L. Stine

Title: Call Waiting

Series: Point Horror

Author: R.L. Stine

Publication date: February 1994

Published by: Scholastic

Source: Purchased paperback

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Synopsis: Someone wants to talk to Karen badly. Very badly. Someone who has something very special to say.

Someone is calling Karen to say they care. To tell her the plans they've made just for her. Someone wants to reach out. Touch her. Kill her.

Poor Karen. She's all alone this time.

And if Karen can't trace the killer caller...Karen's going to die.

My rating: ★☆☆☆☆

This book was... frustrating. We start right off with the main character’s brother doing some really dumb jokes that I hated. And then the main character herself, Karen, was absolutely unlikable. She threw tantrums, cried out of nowhere, had angry outbursts and threatened to kill the other girl all for a freaking guy. And her fixation on Ethan was SO unhealthy. But not only that, she also gaslit the guy and manipulated the hell out of him! It was such a toxic relationship that she didn’t even want him hanging out with his own friends! WTF! I felt bad for the guy, actually. And I don’t know if she was meant to be sympathetic because I am not about to be okay with this toxic person.

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Review: Be Not Afraid by Cecilia Galante

Title: Be Not Afraid

Author: Cecilia Galante

Publication date: April 2015

Published by: Random House Books for Young Readers

Source: Purchased hardcover

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Synopsis: Marin spends a lot of time avoiding things. She avoids thinking about her mother's suicide and what she could have done to prevent it. She avoids looking at people directly-because she can see their pain as bright, colorful shapes. And she avoids Cassie Jackson, who used her in a sinister ritual months ago, although Marin's not exactly sure why.

When Cassie stands up at school, screaming, raking her nails down her cheeks, and pointing a finger at Marin, whispering "YOU," Marin's days of avoidance come to an abrupt end. Cassie's older brother believes that Marin holds the secret to Cassie's illness. So they team up to solve the mystery of what Cassie has unleashed. But as they look deeper into the darkness and things begin to go bump in the night, can Marin trust what she sees?

My rating: ★★☆☆☆

This book sounded very intriguing to me. There’s some sketchy past between Cassie and Marin—Cassie did something and now something bad is happening to her. Cassie’s brother Dominic asks Marin for her help because she’s the one who knows about whatever thing it was that Cassie did. Marin very reluctantly helps. VERY reluctantly. Marin also has a very cool ability where she can see pain.