Posted in Chatty

Another day of gratitude

It’s Thanksgiving here in the United States, and while I’m not big on holidays, I am big on being grateful for what you have. I make it a point each day to consciously appreciate what I have in life, and today is no different. But today is also a day where a lot of people focus on it, so I’ll share a few things from my list as well here. โ˜บ

Things I’m Grateful For

  • having this blog and the chance to work with publishers and authors. It’s literally a dream come true, and one I genuinely never thought could actually happen. It may seem simple, but for me it’s completely amazing. ^.^
  • my legs work. Again, a seemingly simple thing, unless you don’t have it. Having broken my foot before, I got a little taste of navigating the world without the ease of functioning legs. Now it’s a touchstone of gratitude
  • rainy days. I do crave sun more often than not, but a calm rainy day can be like a heavy comforting blanket some days.
  • the most delicious foods that I get to eat. Some people lived before chocolate was available, and I’m so grateful that’s not my fate.
  • the frugality of my youth. I saved far more often than spent in the last years, and those savings came in crucial this year with employment being pretty shaky
  • speaking of employment, I’m hella grateful to start my new job next week! I’m extremely grateful I got it within just a few weeks of losing my other job, and I wasn’t stuck in the fearful limbo of not knowing if I would have income for long. Plus, I’m just super excited about this new role and all the opportunities it brings. โœŒ
  • apple cider vinegar shampoo that has finally, finally brought a lovely shiny balance to my hair
  • shared gaming habits with my S.O. and a few days to play together in the new expansion
  • friends who adapt to long-distance friendship and put in the effort to make it work
  • every librarian I’ve ever met because they had a huge influence in my life

Alright, I could easily go on because there is so much to be grateful for (even on the bad days). But I’ll stop for now. Tell me some of your own bits of gratitude so I can celebrate with you. ^.^

Annihilation: Book v movie

I’m reading Annihilation by Jef Vandermeer right now, as it’s been one I’ve been curious about for a while. Specifically, since the movie came out a few years ago. I wasn’t actually that into the movie, but I was still curious about what the book it was based on would be like.

So far the answer is: completely different from the movie. I’m actually pretty happy with that since like I said, I wasn’t that into the movie so something different works for me.

The book does maintain the otherworldly aspects, though, which is pretty much a requirement for a story about a creepy unexplained chunk of world that has spawned eerie unfamiliarity. My favorite aspect has been the way the writing reflects the narrators growing instability. The fact that it’s written as a journal introduces some wrinkles and expectations that I want to see resolved, out of curiosity of how they’ll be handled.

Posted in Chatty

WOW Libraries, in honor of Shadowlands!

Hey y’all! The new expansion for World of Warcraft released today, but since there are so many people trying to play it right now, I can’t because the servers are overloaded. ๐Ÿ˜‚ So while I wait a few hours to be able to play, here’s a shortย post featuring some of the libraries from the game. โ˜บ

Posted in Chatty

5 Words I Learned From Video Games

Hey y’all! Besides reading, one of my main hobbies is gaming. I’m a big fan of RPGs (I love the story, go figure. Very in character for me.) and play a lot of World of Warcraft (WoW) and Elder Scrolls Online (ESO). WoW has a new game expansion coming out next week, and I’m super excited for it!

My S.O. got a copy of the new expansion to play as the developers were finishing it up, and when we came across a new creature that had a word neither of us knew, it made me think about what an incredible vocabulary games have.

Here are 5 words that I learned from these two video games over the many years I’ve been playing.

Greaves of grievance, we craft our cuisses from the tanned skins of our defeated foes, defending our hides with the hides that did not defend them.

Dremora Legs Crafting Motif, ESO
sweet cuisses bro

Cuisses: thigh armor; the singular is the French word cuisse which literally just means thigh

Unsurprisingly, I’ve learned a lot of words for armor and weaponry through these games, since they have a lot of swords and fighting aspects. But even after playing these kinds of games for years, I came across a new one!

Also please acknowledge how beautiful and clever and just linguistically delightful that sentence is. I adore it.

Continue reading “5 Words I Learned From Video Games”
Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

Stunning theatre turned bookstore

I stumbled upon this gem of a bookstore (in searching online, not in real life, alas):

Behold! El Ateneo Grand Splendid!

This grand hall in Buenos Aires, Argentina started as a performance area for all kinds of events, like dancing and music. In the 1920s it was turned into a cinema, with seating installed. Then in 2000, a company leased the building, removed the seating, and turned it into a flagship bookstore for their publishing house. Pretty impressive history of artistic involvement in this building!

By Galio – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,
By Phillip Capper from Wellington, New Zealand – El Atena Grand Splendid Bookshop, Recoleta, Buenos Aires, Argentina, 28th. Dec. 2010, CC BY 2.0,
Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

When all your library loans come in at once

So! This morning I got a nice surprise: my hold for Instant Karma by Marissa Meyer was available from the library! But in a kind of bittersweet way because I also have several other holds that recently came in the last few days.

And I also still have several books from my physical collection that I want to read this month and am excited for…

I was pretty much faced with a dilemma. After mulling it over a bit, I accepted the hold for the new book, and read it entirely today. ๐Ÿ˜‚ I was really excited about it! It was so cute, even if the MC was actually pretty annoying as a person (more on that when I eventually review it). Ah, the joy and pain of library holds. ๐Ÿฅฐ

When you can’t focus at all but also finish 2 books

Today, oh, today. It was unseasonably warm and sunny today, so I got some time reading outside on the deck (probably for the last time for a while). So while it should have been a lovely day, I just felt like I couldn’t focus!

It seems weird to say that when I can also say I finished 2 books today. Granted that was probably only like 150 pages total to finish between the two of them, but still — it sounds like it would require at least SOME focus! And yet my mind has been scattered.

In all fairness, a large part of that was because of the squirrels. They’re hella cute and know I source peanuts if they ask nicely. So though I was trying to start These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong… I just kept watching the squirrels instead. ๐Ÿ˜‚

Do you feel like you’ve been productive when you read a lot in a day? It varies for me, but I tend to try to get a few other concrete things in as well.

Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

November 2020 TBR: obligations and explorations

Hey y’all!

I’ve got a plan again this month for what I’ll read. These plans are sometimes a bit silly though, because by the time I write this post to share it, I’ve usually already finished a few of them. ๐Ÿ˜‚ Today is no different, but I’ll include the books here anyway as I’m excited about them! It’s a tidy planned set of nine this month. ๐Ÿ˜Š

The best obligations

These books are each ones I’m reading for A Reason Not Only My Own. I mean, to be real, I’m still the one deciding and benefiting here, but they’re in the list for more than just “I wanted to” reasons!

The Year of the Witching by Alexis Henderson is one that I already finished because I couldn’t resist plowing through it once I had started. I went in somehwat blind from a recommendation from my friend Elise (thanks again!), and WOW was this a fabulous recommendation! I really love it, as you can see in my review. ๐Ÿ™‚

Continue reading “November 2020 TBR: obligations and explorations”
Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

October 2020 Wrap Up (and what a month it was!!!)

You know, considering I’ve been in my house 90% of the hours in this year, a lot more big life changes have happened than I’d anticipated. ๐Ÿ˜‚ Here’s this month’s recap in reading, writing, and the rest of my life. And let me tell ya: it’s a bit of a doozy.


How many books that I planned did I read?
I planned for twelve books, knowing full well that would not happen. ๐Ÿ˜‚ I read 8 that I planned, one that I couldn’t resist, and two that were nearly done by the end of the month but technically I finished yesterday when it was already November.

The Plan:

Forgive my laziness… but I’m not writing all of these out again. ๐Ÿ˜‚

The Result:

I started The Passage by Justin Cronin, but it is as slow-paced as the show was and really long. I just had so many other stories I was excited about that I passed on this one for now. It’s definitely one I’ll read, just… next year probably. ๐Ÿ˜‚ I’ve already got plans for the next two months!!! (WOW WHO EVEN AM I…)

Continue reading “October 2020 Wrap Up (and what a month it was!!!)”
Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

Word Origins: Can being notorious be a good thing?

Connotation is one of my favorite things about language. Connotation shapes our language so much, and in such a natural way that you’d rarely even realize it was happening. Words pick up new meanings, and sometimes are made into completely opposite or entirely different meanings than where they began.

Notorious is a wonderful word. It feels salacious and darkly intriguing and bad-boy-ish. It’s just a tiny bit dangerous, but probably not so much as to be truly perilous. Just enough to be… interesting.

But has it always meant that? Was being notorious once a good thing? Or have villains and playboys been notorious for all time?

Origins of “notorious”

When did it first get used?

What does it mean?
then: publicly known or spoken about; well known
now: low-key famous for something bad or negative (a personality trait, an action, etc)

You could be the office worker notorious for reheating fish in the communal microwave. You could be the mafia boss notorious for creative smashings of knees. But… could you be the single dad notorious for contributing to every bake sale for his kid’s class?

Continue reading “Word Origins: Can being notorious be a good thing?”