Posted in Book Talk

Spine poetry – life of a refugee

I’ve seen this wonderful idea on instagram, that I don’t have enough physical books to participate in myself anymore. The idea is to take a look through your books and create a poem from the titles you have. I LOVE that, but alas, moving so often means I’ve had to cut down my physical collection.

But I’m adaptable! So instead, I’ve pored through some of the book I have listed on Goodreads to create a poem. It actually ended up holding a good deal of meaning for me, so here’s what I got on my first attempt!

They called us enemy
Run away
New kid
This is my America
A love hate thing


Continue reading “Spine poetry – life of a refugee”
Posted in Book Talk

My heart and soul in a decade

So, why Hart & Seoul for my final read?

I feel that it encompassed a lot of the most important things I did in the last decade, which is likely going to be the most formative and varied decade of my life. (Not ruling anything out, but it’ll be hard to beat!) It was also a fantastically funny and sweet read, and if I can end every year that way, I think I’m doing alright. 😊

Here’s a look at my life mirroring Merri’s life in Hart & Seoul, and a little timeline of it all!


Korea / kpop – I lived in Korea!

Ok, this is probably a pretty obvious one. Lee is a kpop star, and there’s romanized Korean spoken throughout the book. The cultural moments that I keep mentioning are so relatable for me after having lived there. Frankly, I fell in love with Korea and Koreans and Korean entertainment. A blend of modernity and tradition, a sense of community towards everyone, and the wildest stories that end up being so touching and sweet. I adore it, and this book was a delicious reminder of all that I love!

Continue reading “My heart and soul in a decade”
Posted in Book Talk

Reading versus Listening?

Is it Better to Read Books
or Listen to Them?

I struggle to listen to audiobooks. I don’t want to sit and do nothing but listen, but I also can’t do anything much or I will end up not paying attention. While you might argue that I’m also just sitting and doing nothing when I’m reading a physical book, for some reason it’s different! (I’m sure there’s science for the reason why.) I feel more engaged with and focused on what I’m reading than what I’m listening to.

There’s not really a “right” answer here, as it’s all down to preference and what you’re able to do. But this article looks at what each is best for, and strengths of both forms.

Posted in Cover Roulette

Cover Roulette: The Handmaid’s Tale

I did my first cover roulette post a little while ago for Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, and it was so fun I wanted to do another! Luckily I found another popular book that has had many different editions made, and I wondered…

What other awesome covers have I missed?

Tonight’s book is one I have, somehow, still not read. It’s been on my shelf since I was in high school. It’s now a tv mini series (or something like that?). I even read the graphic novel recently, which ultimately just made me think I should really read the original. Well, before I get to The Handmaid’s Tale, lets take a look at some of the covers!


The Cover I Know

Okay, to be honest, part of why I probably never ended up reading this when I was younger was because this dowdy cover was next to flashy shiny ones with dragons and magic on my bookshelf. And, let’s be real, that’s still the case. But I’ll still read this… eventually. ☺

Continue reading “Cover Roulette: The Handmaid’s Tale”
Posted in Book Talk

Things you can read while traveling

The emergency preparation card.
Swiss magazine about recyclable products made of rice husks. I can get into that. Good translation practice too!
The emergency card again, because what? You’re not supposed to wear your shoes if you have to evacuate??
The magazine full of expensive stuff they want you to buy. This was JUST mentioned in the book I was reading by Jessica Pan!
Stores in the airport that are significantly different from stores you’re used to. I’ve never seen a store dedicated to caviar, I didn’t know there was a term for a seller of prunes, and gastronomy will never sound appealing no matter how fine the food is.
The gate departures sign, every two minutes, to see if your delayed flight is here yet. /Sigh
Find a bookstore! It’s like a real life version of the cover roulettes 😊
Posted in A Picture's Worth

A Picture’s Worth: Evil Gods and Introverts

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.


Master of Sorrows

I’m completely thrilled that Blackstone Publishing got me a copy of Master of Sorrows to read before its U.S. publish date in Feb 2020. And, y’all, this book does not pull any punches. In fact, it throws a lot of them, sometimes with a fist infused with the earth-power of a God. And if that tag line doesn’t get you, what will??

Continue reading “A Picture’s Worth: Evil Gods and Introverts”
Posted in A Picture's Worth

A Picture’s Worth: Corpses and Young Love

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.


If you’ve read either of these and loved them too, vote for them in the Goodreads Choice Awards!

If you haven’t read either, you should definitely do so!


Will My Cat Eat My Eyeballs

I’m a huge fan of quirky science-based nonfiction (like What If by Randall Munroe) so this was a perfect addition to my collection. I love Doughty’s humour throughout, and the fact that she doesn’t shy away from being really really honest about some of the more grisly or cringey aspects of life after death. See my full review of her book here!

They’re considering it… you can tell…

View this post on Instagram

The answer appears to be yes. . . Link in bio.

A post shared by BookPage (@readbookpage) on

Continue reading “A Picture’s Worth: Corpses and Young Love”
Posted in Book Talk

Book Towns Are Tiny Cities Made Up Almost Entirely of Bookstores

The Venn diagram of book lovers and globetrotters actually has a lot of overlap — both are just trying to experience the world, whether from an airplane seat or an armchair. 

Curiosity.com

That is 100% me, as my many travels take place in many locations around the world and around my home. Looks like I’ll have to add Paju Book City to my itinerary when I head back over to South Korea! Apparently there are towns all around the world known as Book Towns, where there’s a huge ratio of books or bookstores to people. I guess I’ll have to register my living room as a low-key Book Town soon. 😀

Classic cursing: a cure for all boredom

I absolutely love words, and I love learning about the way words morph over time. One of the most fun ways to see that is to look at the curses and slang used in each period. It reveals what was common, important, and valued at that time. It is also wildly hilarious, and I very well may end up reading this whole dictionary of insults and slang. It’s called “A Classical Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue” and it can give you a slew of new-again comebacks from 1785.

I feel like this could be great fun for a higher-level English class; maybe something at a college level while studying 18th century literature? You know, for research, to better understand stories like

Some of my favs from this:
birds of a feather: rogues of the same gang (is that where the phrase came from!?)
to blow the grounsils: to – er- lie with a woman on the floor
gollumpus: a large and clumsy fellow
mettlesome: bold, courageous (presumably this has turned into meddlesome, or someone who bothers in others’ business)
ruffles: handcuffs

Fantastic name. ♥
One of the sources for the words found in the collection; sounds like a good read!
complete with handwritten notes, language of origin, and notes on when a word is specific to “Canting” or the language used by thieves and scoundrels
Posted in A Picture's Worth

A picture’s worth: Royalty & Other Monsters

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.


The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein

You’re probably getting sick of me posting about this book but OH MY GOD I LOVE IT SO MUCH! I hope I continue to love it as much as the people below did to put these setups together.

Jennie Shaw putting together this perfectly creepy setup for this tale
I’M IN LOVE. How do you do that so cleanly, Jennie?! Teach me your ways! Also LOVE the brilliance of pairing the books with a custom nail design to reflect it.
Continue reading “A picture’s worth: Royalty & Other Monsters”