Posted in A Picture's Worth

A Picture’s Worth: Paper Cranes

Hey y’all! Anyone remember the Picture’s Worth series last seen, oh, about a year ago? To be honest…. I totally didn’t. 🤣 But saw one pop up in my past posts and thought “OH YEAH those were fun why did I stop doing those!” And couldn’t think of any good reason, so here we go. 😊

Words have always carried more weight with me than images – give me a book over its movie any day – but I do love to see the beautiful images other people create when they’re in love with a book. That’s not my strength, but I can certainly appreciate it in others! So here’s a few of my faves based on what I’ve been reading recently.

Descendant of the Crane by Joan He

So, Descendant of the Crane is an older title by a few years that is totally new to me. What a fool I am for missing it! I’m about halfway through and quite intrigued by the world. It’s been a slower build, but I think the payoff will definitely be worth it. I have no idea if this is a series, but I hope so, because I think there’s a lot of exploring that could be done with it. So let’s check out how beautiful the cover is to match the book so far!! Descendant of the Crane here we come —

WHOOPS, that’s Descendants of the Sun, which my brain typed into Instagram on autopilot. 😂 Guess it might be time for a re-watch?

Back to our regularly scheduled programming…

@bookishwondergoth made use of the related decorative fan that came in an Illumicrate box, of which I am extremely envious. They did it better than I ever could have, though. xD

@agalaxyofpages has playing cards of the characters!!! Or just, decorative cards of the characters? And I think this was done with a digital cover, which makes this even more impressive to me.

@theseviciousdelights probably just casually has this lovely robe, but daaaaang did it perfectly complement the cover and aesthetic of the book!!

Rock Paper Scissors by Alice Feeney

Rock Paper Scissors is not a book I would have picked up if it weren’t for BOTM (judging by the editions in the photos, this is true for many people). The jury is still out on whether that instinct to avoid was correct or if BOTM will prove me wrong. Sadly… BOTM rarely delivers for me. Nonetheless, I’m a little ways into this and the setting is incredibly well established. Days are getting cooler here, and I deliberately read this one any time it’s under 65 F / 18 C just to help embrace that.

@myschedulesbooked created a definite mood with the colors and contrast here. I adore the very literal representation of the title ^.^ Even the rock is like, a very pretty rock. The rocks around my yard look more… rockish.

@read_with_lynne got the scissors just right! I love the way they obscure their eyes because I feel like that is representative of the way everyone in this book is hiding something. Or many somethings. Or maybe even their whole existence. And it took me three tries to spell “scissors” correctly even though I’ve written and read it 50 times in the making of this post. 😊

@completely_bookt took this thriller set during a blizzard in a remote church in Scotland… for a beach read. 😂 That’s one way to combat it! I wonder if the sunshine helped keep the chill from creeping over them while they read through this eerie book? They even mention wishing they’d read it when it was cold to set the mood so I guess I’m doing it wrong as well. Whoops!!

Judging by the covers, would y’all read either of these books? Or if you already did, do the insides match the outsides for you?

Ps I remembered why I stopped doing these. Embedding an Instagram post into WordPress is a nightmare. Bookstagrammers like to write very lengthy captions, which is great except for when you can’t hide the caption. 😅 I tried so many other workaround and custom code options, but it seems like they still crap out and default to showing a message saying “view this on Instagram” which… sort of ruins the point. Ah well. I think I found a workaround, and I really hope that they stay visible! I’ll check in on this and see what happens, which will probably determine if these truly continue or not.

Thoughts so far on Half Sick of Shadows

Hey y’all! I’m in the middle of Half Sick of Shadows by Laura Sebastian right now. “In the middle” might be a little optimistic, but I’m at a solid 200 pages now! This is a slower read for me, and I’m not hating it.

Since the main character is an oracle, the style reflects that mindset, and it has a really engaging effect for me. Elaine is constantly bombarded from all sides as she remembers her past, navigates her present, and weaves (literally) the future. In turn, the reader gets snippets of her past interspersed with the present, and of course the pepperings of glances forward, the possibilities, the problems she worries will be created in the future by her actions right now.

I really sink into whenever I sit down, and I find myself thinking about it often throughout the day. I love a book that sticks with you!

Posted in Book Talk

In Progress with MEMORIAL

Progress: page 149/303 (49%)

The slog continues…. I really wish I were enjoying this more, but the first half was super weird and so much seemed unnecessary (why did we see a pigeon pick up a quarter… why did it get mentioned AGAIN five pages later…). Then I finally adjusted to the rhythm, and the POV changes and is completely different. /SIGH. To be honest, I have gotten nothing from this so far…

Why did I start reading it?

It was a BOTM that I grabbed, after hearing some good things about it. I originally scorned it because I super-hate the cover. Then I learned more about it, looked at it again, saw more details of the cover that made me hate it a little less, and decided to actually read it. The premise involves relationship examining and culture shock, going new places, learning about others, etc. which always wins me in.

Why am I still reading it?

This isn’t usually a question I include in my In Progress posts… but I think it warrants asking at this point. xD I have so far not enjoyed the book at all. I don’t think I’m getting anything else from it. I don’t want to read it, frankly. But I’m very slowly continuing… because I bought it, and I don’t want to have wasted my money and book pick for the month. 😐

Lines that linger

My mother smelled like chocolate. My father wore his nice shirt. You’d have been hard pressed to think that this was a man who’d thrown his wife against a wall. Or that this lady, immediately afterward, stuck a fork into his elbow.

Posted in Book Talk, Quotes

Notes from the author: Nghi Vo on Empress of Salt and Fortune

Hey y’all! One delightful aspect of Goodreads is that when you read a Kindle book, you can link your notes and highlights within it to your Goodreads account and read them later online in a nice format.

My favorite way this has been leveraged (and I’m seeing it more often lately) is when the author themselves will write notes on quotes in their book and publish it to Goodreads publicly. It’s like the commentary track on a movie, but for a book. Hearing the author’s personal thoughts on their writing is such a delight. Unlike normal interviews or Q&As, this is entirely directed by their thoughts and what they want to share. I 100% adore that.

One set that I read and enjoyed recently was from Nghi Vo, author of Empress of Salt and Fortune (a fantastic, mystical novella that you can read more about here).

Here’s one of my favorite notes from the author:

If you’re interested,
the full set of notes is available here!

Dune begins

Hey y’all! I finally started Dune! I’m not very far yet, but my overwhelming impression is that there will be many words I don’t know. I bought a physical copy, but now I’m thinking I should have read a digitally so I could look up all these words! It’s a bit of a two-fold issue, because there are so many words specific to the world itself but then also just really advanced vocabulary English words. If I can keep track, I’ll probably have a lot of new words by the end of the book!

Posted in Chatty

Never before seen…

I am one of those people who usually has several things I’m in the middle of reading all at the same time. However, I just cleanly wrapped up a few things all at once. So when I logged onto Goodreads and saw this…

…I was low-key shook. I legitimately had no idea this graphic existed because I don’t think I have ever seen it before. I always have SOMETHING marked in progress. xD I’m about to add Legendborn to fill in this unsettling space though! 🙂

Poetry month!

Hey y’all! Apparently April is poetry month in the United States. Coincidentally, I’ve been on a bit of a pretty kick the past couple of weeks. I found a collection I really enjoyed called Songs of Nature by Sarojina Naidu, and there are a few more by the author that I’ll be continuing with. I also started a collection called Citizen Illegal by José Olivarez focusing heavily on his experience as a Mexican American and I love it. He has a very cut and dry style that pulls no punches.

I didn’t plan this to align, but it works out pretty well.

Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

Why I’m reading Eragon… yet again!

Hey y’all! For all my fellow mood readers, I’ve had a very relatable moment recently. I was restless one morning and despite having several books in progress, decided I wanted something new (because of course). I decided I wanted something very specific:

  • a grand adventure
  • definitely some kind of magic
  • probably elves too or some other magical creatures
  • not super dark, but not fluffy, either
  • a fast-paced read rather than a slow-burn thinker

Honestly, I kept thinking “something like Lord of the Rings, but not Lord of the Rings.” After drilling through a lot of recommendations on Storygraph, I found my perfect book for the moment, which was actually a re-read!

And so I’m now a little over halfway through Eragon by Christopher Paolini, and I was correct in choosing it because it is perfectly scratching the itch I had. I had also been wanting to re-read this book (and series) recently because To Sleep In a Sea Of Stars last summer got me all fired up and wanting to read more from Paolini. Saphira is keeping me company as a star of her own kind. ^.^

Since I’ve already read this book several times before, mostly when I was in school still, it also has the benefit of being comfortable and familiar. Do you ever feel struck with the desire to re-read a book you’re already familiar with?

PS – If you’re also a fan of Eragon, check out these covers for it from all around the world. Some of them are really awesome!

Posted in Book Talk

In progress with THE UNSPOKEN NAME

The Unspoken Name by A.K. Larkwood

Progress: page 313/464 (67%)

Why did I start reading it?

I saw this at some point, I think maybe just when browsing through library books available soon, and the cover stopped me in my tracks. The name took it from there. And the blurb sealed the deal. I’m super into the magic-and-necromancy stories, and if this was any time around October then make it doubly so. It’s been on my radar for a while now and I finally grabbed a copy for this month. This book is so much. By 30% of the way through, I felt like I had read as much story as would be in some other entire books, and I was only a third of the way through! I didn’t fully expect an epic, but that’s what it is, and I’m not mad.

Words I’ve Learned

Lines that linger

He must have swabbed up old age, like a sponge, by touching too many old books.

Women of a certain age loved Sethennai, even when they were giant snakes or evil rocks.

The secret of greatness is to know when you should risk the wrath of god.