books

We Are Okay Review + Birthday Shenanigans

Sup, mofos.

My 22nd birthday was yesterday so I’ve been super busy in anticipation of that particular event. For those of you wondering, I went to a Death Cab for Cutie concert on Thursday night AND IT WAS MAGICAL AS FUCK. I’ve been to concerts before and I really enjoyed them. I’m a music-oriented person. Nine out of ten times I’m going to remember something in terms of what songs were playing or what songs were popular at that period of my life. So, concerts are a good place for me. Being introverted has its drawbacks in the sense of really, really hating fucking crowds but I’m also a super aggressive and angry introvert and that balances me out a bit. Anyway, it was magical. It was one of those times when you get goosebumps because suddenly everyone is singing along to a song that you used to fall asleep to and the nostalgia is tangible. I was amazed at how alive I felt during the concert and my friend that took me (an early birthday present, bless her) was just as stoked, which was awesome. I hella started tearing up during Soul Meets Body but it’s okay, we don’t have to talk about that. The moral of the story is that I am now a concert junkie – look out world, I just gained another tier of Crazy.

On my actual Womb Evacuation Anniversary, I spent the day getting completely fucking wrecked with my soul sister who happens to also have the same Womb Evacuation Anniversary. Jason has the stomach flu, though, so I had to cut my 10-hour drinking spree short. St. Paddy’s is such a fantastic day to be of legal drinking age and have a birthday because the amount of whiskey that one consumes is completely justifiable by saying “FUCK IT I’M IRISH”. I have definitely decided that I need to permanently ingrain my day of birth into my flesh by getting a Celtic tattoo. Sue me, I like body art.

A lot.

Okay, so here comes the nerdy part. I had a fucking amazing couple of days and then the bookish gifts started flooding in. I got my March package from my pen pal and she picked out some seriously rad looking reads for my library (because she’s a Virgo and I collect Virgos because they understand me). My incredibly sweet Uncle Grapes (it’s a long story, it’s fine. Everything is fine) sent me some money so I went straight to Barnes & Noble. I even got a year membership! No self-control! Also, for someone who has such immense tolerance for physical pain and alcohol, I sure don’t have any tolerance for people or expensive books. My boss (also a Virgo, I was not kidding when I say I collect them) found me amethyst bookends. She remembered that I saw them a few months back and didn’t feel like splurging so she went ahead and did me a solid. Here they are in their glorious and majestic as fuck nature.

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They’re so pretty, I could just die.

So then, my mother-in-law presented me with a personal library kit and a book embosser. That’s right, I have a book embosser now. She got me a copy of The Scorpio Races because one can never have too much Stiefvater in their lives AND I EMBOSSED IT.

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She used my fiance’s last name on the embosser and that made my cold, dead heart warm ever-so-slightly. I’m going to emboss everything I own and then if someone tries to run away with one of my precious babies I will hunt them down and emboss them, too.

Anyway, here’s a little snippet of my thoughts regarding We Are Okay (by Nina Lacour)

  • I read Hold Still a few years ago and really, really liked it so I expected the same kind of enjoyment from We Are Okay 
  • LBGT characters? Yes! Sign me THE FUCK UP. Gimme all the representation, all of it. 
  • It was a little tricky to get into, the story starts off pretty timid and vague but once I was in, oh boy, was I in.
  • Marin is extremely relatable; her grief is so realistic there were times that I thought I could hold it…if I was careful
  • The character development is astouding  – for real, some of the best CD I’ve ever read. You go from being like “Okay, what’s going on, send help” to being like “Something very profound just happened and I think I missed it because I was too busy watching these people unfold”
  • THE PLOT TWIST IS THE WORST THING EVER. Like okay, Nina. We get it, you like crushing people like ants under your feet but this is cool, too. There will be no spoilers ahead but I can tell you that the thing was revealed and I had to reread it because it was so unexpected.
  • It had a lovely nostalgic feel to it. There was such delicious descriptive language. It felt like road trips and Christmas and beach trips all rolled into a delightful little package of soul-crushing sadness.

 

I give it a solid 8/10 and highly recommend it for fans of contemporary fiction or who need to feel understood.

I also finished Anna Kendrick’s autobiography. It was good, I’m not a huge fan of biographies but I powered through it because I have a huge crush on her. It’s okay, I read her book. We’re friends now. You can definitely tell where she starts to get more confident in her story because she switches from objective storytelling to snarky asshole over the span of a couple pages. I’m just glad I finished it, to be honest. Her humor was so on point but I truly hate stories of Hollywood and fame. I detest them.

I am now looking for a new audiobook and trying to get through Truthwitch which is becoming better, the further I get into it.

I’ll talk to you guys when I’m done with my vacation so I hope you have a lovely week.

That’s all there is,

The Book Witch

 

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books

How We Find Ourselves In Books

For the life of me, I couldn’t figure out why I was so drawn to the characters in the Raven Cycle series, especially Ronan or Kavinsky. They’re so contradictory and prickly, what could I possibly see in them, especially Ronan? 

Well, my friends, the mystery is solved: it’s because I, small and hateful angry bean, AM RONAN LYNCH. 

For the love of fuck, look at this shit!

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I dress like that on accident, man! That is an actual face that I make at other human beings. (I’m the one on the left, by the way. I know some of you probably didn’t know that)

How many times have we fallen in love with a book or a series because we resonate so closely with the characters? I’ve been devoured by these books, turned completely inside out, chewed up, and spit back out. It’s like looking into a mirror and seeing yourself in typewriter font.

For example, here is the List of Things That I Have In Common With Ronan Lynch Because I Need More Reasons To Stay Awake At Night 

  • trust fund babies
  • literally, we’re just privileged assholes with no verbal filters
  • my birthday falls on St. Patricks’ Day aka the Irish Day; Ronan is Irish af
  • taste in music that everyone fucking hates
  • don’t talk to us when we have headphones on, don’t touch our tattoos
  • give us a something fast and we’re happy
  • or, give us music and alcohol and we’ll be restless but better
  • we both lost parents and turned into bitter douche canoes
  • we will both end your life if you fuck with our baby brothers
  • or our friends
  • fucking with my friends is a sure-fire way to get your life ended
  • wear black and keep our resting bitch faces on point but are really full of feelings
  • a LOT of feelings
  • both think our boyfriends are some sort of godlike angel when in reality we are dating huge nerds
  • super sensitive to all things. don’t deny that Ronan Lynch is a sensitive mofo, he literally won’t let Gansey boy make other friends
  • both of us have had Kavinskys in our lives; we ended up not being with them because they were toxic af and would’ve ruined our shit
  • love our dads very much
  • treat our pets like children
  • NIGHT TERRROOORS
  • like no friends but really fond of the ones we have
  • beings of rage and love
  • raised on a farm
  • raised Catholic AF
  • hates most things, including ourselves
  • is either dropping the F-bomb, flipping you off or being sarcastic
  • actual trophy wives
  • would rather die than hurt someone we love
  • PTSD, depression, and anxiety up the wazooo

There’s more, a lot more, but that’s the general gist of my argument. We fall so hard for these characters because we see ourselves in them. We love them when we cannot love our own souls. They are catalysts to the breaking of our hearts and the slow, aching awareness that brings us back to wholeness. The characters we love are constellations in the galaxies that reside in our bones.

I am so elated to be made up of these beings, these people that I will never meet. Their presence forces me to stop and remember my gushing affection or them and that reminds me to love myself, as well. The cycle is continuous and beautiful and my gratitude for the writers who penned the puzzle pieces of who I am is infinite.

I did actually pick up reading again – my book hangover has subsided a bit. I’m currently listening to We Are Okay by Nina LaCour and reading The Young Wives Club by Julie Pennel. I heard that you kind of need to force yourself to read again and that it really helps to pick something in a completely different genre. So, I guess I’ll read other books until my Dream Theif trilogy arrives. I GUESS.

In the meantime, I have my gorgeous new tarot cards, drawn by my Scorpio soulmate Maggie Stiefvater herself to work with. My favorite part of these cards is the accompanying book that comes with them – the translations are witty as hell. Its hard to find cards with translations that you actually resonate with! I swear this is a problem in the cartomancy community!

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I actually had dreams about ghosts and my cousin last night but the best part was that she greeted me with a Jersey accent, mimicking my problematic son Joseph Kavinsky, and said “DICK GANNNSSSSAAAAAY THE THIRD!!”. It was such a calming sensation, hearing a 17-year-old drug  Bulgarian  drug addict mobster’s voice come out of my 21-year-old, and very female, cousin’s voice box. I’m not kidding, I woke up and I was like “So this is how the pieces fall together”

I hope everyone has a book character that they love so much it causes them physical pain. I know that I have several, because life is a fucking nightmare. 

That’s all there is,

Carry on

The Book Witch

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The Worst Book Hangover EVER // My beloved male characters

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I FINISHED THE RAVEN CYCLE SERIES AND IT LEFT  GIANT, GAPING MAW THE SIZE OF RONAN LYNCH IN MY CHEST. 

I’m upset because its over and I’m extra upset because I feel like there’s literally no fandom for this. There’s not nearly enough fanfiction or Tumblr posts to tide me over until I die and have “I am being perfectly fucking civil” written on my tombstone. My cousin gets it, she read the series and I am very grateful that I have a single human  who I can text at 4 am with shit like “remember when Noah said he was ‘much more when he was alive’ because I remember and it hurts”

I loved all the characters so much. I really enjoy stories that focus on more than one character and have men as the focal point. I know that Blue is a huge part of the series but she fit so well into the weird fabric that is the Raven Boys, that I tend to lump them all together. I cannot begin to express how much I loved this series. I’m devastated that it’s over.

I heard, however, that Ronan is getting HIS OWN TRILOGY AND I AM VERY EXCITED. No one deserves that series like the middle Lynch child. Maggie talked about it in August, so we probably won’t see it for a while but it is reassuring that there will be a continuation for my small gay son. I have been buying A L L the Ronan Lynch merch. I kid you not, I made an appointment to get an RC tattoo the day after I finished the series and I’m FUCKING ECSTATIC to show everyone. My fiance is convinced that I am Ronan and he doesn’t know much about Adam… but if we’re comparing people to Raven Boys, lemme just say that Jason is the most Adam-y person there is.

Speaking of male humans that I love, I decided to turn this post into My Top Male Characters and Why They’re Sweet Babies Who Need Protection At All Costs. 

These are ranked from most favorite to “I will still fight someone for you, at some point” There are **SPOILERS** in this list. 

Here it is – the reasons that I can’t sleep, my precious angels.

  1.  RONAN LYNCH (The Raven Boys) – Whatever ninth circle of Hell that Ronan crawled out of, I came from the same one. Everything about him is admirable: his beautiful cussing poetry, his BMW, his love for his friends, the Murder Squash Song. Like Ronan, I too, enjoy driving things in illegal ways, shitty EDM, being “the friend with tattoos” and the loner. Ronan would totally be in Slytherin. He gets +20 points for having a raven as a sidekick. Also, he’s a really great example of a man who likes men but is allowed to keep his masculinity. I love him and I love his secret tenderness and generosity.  Bad boys with feelings, forever.
  2. JOSEPH KAVINSKY (The Raven Boys) – Hear me out, okay. I know that he’s kind of a piece of shit but he is the prime example of self-destruction and if I know something about anything, it is self-destructive habits. Poor K, who just loved Ronan and wanted Ronan to love him. I love how he uses humor to cover up his emotions because that’s my primary coping mechanism, too. He’s an asshole and I love him and it broke my heart that he died the way he did. #josephkaviskymatters2017 SAT that, Dick. 
  3. DRACO LUCIUS MALFOY – This is fairly self-explanatory. He’s the Slytherin-with-too-many-feelings poster child and my life would be a horrible, dark place without his overly-assertive existence. Come here, my precious douche-bag child. I love all the douche bags and I’m proud. 
  4. SETH MORGAN (Wicked Lovely) – Draco and Seth were my first book-boyfriends. He’s the kind of guy that girls dream of; the selfless best friend. I loved Seth from the start and I knew that he was going to end up being like “Here’s my life, babe. Just take it” Seth was so wise and humble, too. He needs All of the Love Forever. If he would’ve died, I would have gone with him.
  5. DORIAN HAVILLARD (Throne of Glass) – Protect him, please. I’m not gonna say much about him but if any of you who are reading this have any connection to Queen Maas… Please, just… spare my book-loving, magic-wielding nerd son. You can kill Chaol – just don’t touch my king cinnamon roll.
  6. TYRANNUS BASILTON GRIMM PITCH (Carry On) – Ah, yes. Another dark-souled, self-deprecating, asshole who turns out to be in love with The Golden Boy and hopelessly gay. Can you see the pattern, yet? 
  7. DEATH (The Arcana Chronicles) – Complete asshole with too many feels – not gay, but very relevant. His whole back story just sucks and he just keeps drawing the short end of the proverbial scythe.
  8. NEWT SCAMANDER – Terribly awkward beast mom. 10/10 would cuddle.
  9. RICHARD GANSEY III (Raven Cycle) – Honestly, he puts up with so much shit. I might think he’s a little bitch, sometimes, but like… he has been the Group Dad since Day 1 and will probably never stop… Adam straight went to him?! and was like?! Hey, can I date your daughter, Ronan?! I promise I won’t kill him?! and Gansey was like ‘Don’t you harm a hair on his angry, attractive head and I won’t have to pay someone to bury your body. Just kidding, here’s a $100… I’m happy for you, but really, he’s very sensitive”

 

Here are some photos of my new stickers! I have more coming! I love stickers!

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Shout out to Jason, who puts up with my book merch addiction and lets me use him as a photo prop. 10/10 would marry.

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Have a great week, everyone! Go read a book series that destroys the core of your being so that we can suffer together 🙂

 

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What I’m Reading + Bookish Tattoos

Hello, friends!

I bet you all thought since I got my laptop back I would be blogging a lot! W R O N G! But really, its not for any exciting reason, I just had a rough couple of weeks.

I did, however, get my Fuck Love tattoo.

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Here’s the caption that went with it:

“Let people feel the weight of who you are and let them deal with it” I will not be afraid of letting the reality of my existence take up space in the world. i will not apologize for my curves or the dichotomy of the sharp angles and softness of my hips. i will not dumb myself down to make you more comfortable. being ashamed of intelligence is a horrendous thing. i will not apologize for my purple hair, my tattoos, my done or undone face. i will never sacrifice my empathy, my ambition, or my ruthlessness. i won’t tell you i’m sorry for needing time away from other humans to feel whole again or for the books in my purse. i won’t be beat down for my truth – the splotchy mind of pock marked depression and OCD and panic disorder. i will not be ashamed of the bridge between lobes that confuses colors with numbers, my constant entanglement of senses. i won’tgive excuses for my love of kurt cobain and johnny cash. let me love what i need to, let me say what needs to be said. i am a ragged breath under a star filled sky.

Sorry for the blood!

I really felt at home in the tattoo shop I went to for this one; I liked my first artists because they were my friends prior to me being a client but I deeply loved something about Nichole. She reminded me of a winter fairy working in a tattoo shop, like stepping into the series that convinced me that tattoos were to be cherished and collected at all costs. I am stoked to finish the rest of my book sleeve.

I’m gonna have to include something from the Throne of Glass series since I finished Queen of Shadows last week and I felt something latch onto my soul. I love that fucking series. I cannot get over how much I love that series. Like holy shit, it is blowing my mind. I just love Aelin and Rowan and Manon and my sweet cinnamon roll Dorian. If my little #friendshipgoals group doesn’t survive this series I will personally end someone’s life as a payment for theirs. I still strongly dislike Chaol, strongly. Dislike. With. a. Passion.  Everyone talks about the Inner Circle of ACOTAR being the six best friends that anyone could ever have but have you met my sweET TERRASEN RULING COURT?! HAVE YOU MET THEM AND BASKED IN THE GLORY OF THEIR FRIENDSHIP?! I DID AND I FUCKING CRIED.

I even got a cute little Manon/ Dorian candle set! (I don’t have a problem)

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They smell like happiness and they make me smile, isn’t that enough for you?

I also got a new BuJo (or bullet journal as the academics might call it) that was inspired by Manon. Oh, and I have more stickers and a new wallet on the way, that are also ToG related. Can you tell who my favorite character is? I’ll give you two guesses. You’re probably also wondering what tea that is – it’s the Malfoy Tea Emporium’s flavor, Haunted Library. How can you scroll past a shop called Malfoy’s Tea Emporium with teas like Haunted Library, Queen of the Underworld, and Rhysand? Draco Malfoy deserved better. 

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Speaking of friendship goals, I’m almost 3/4 of the way through the Raven Cycle series and I just?! how?! does she write?! characters like?! THAT!!!! I am in love with all the sweet Raven Boys and Blue A N D the Grey Man AND everyone at 300 Fox Way and Kavinski for some weird, probably really deeply ingrained psychological issue. Its so intricate and amazing and has moved its way up into my Top 5 series, just like Throne of Glass. I’m gonna have to add the Raven Cycle to my book sleeve. I really love books that focus on more than one character, like the other characters are allowed to have pasts and fears and hobbies. I’m so madly, truly in love with the Steifvater and Maas write stories, they’re polar opposites and yet so many things are similar and both are so worthy of attention. Raven Cycle doesn’t seem to have as big of a fandom as ToG which bums me out because, again, I really liked Kavinski and I feel like I need to receive feedback as to whether that’s normal or not.

I finished Shade Me, the book about the girl with synesthesia trying to solve a mystery. It was… okay. She was a pretty lame character with lame love interests and lame enemies. The mystery was good and I liked how twisted it was but I was still left going “What the fuck? That doesn’t make any sense” at the end. I did appreciate the representation of synethesia, though. Its uncommon in books and its such a wicked way of having your brain wired. I have it mildly, and by mildly (insert Lemony Snicket voice), a word which here means, not as severe as this book character, I am referring to the fact that it still makes me want to rip my hair out from unwanted stimulus. I started Grave Mercy and it seems I have a thing for assassins or minions of death, in general.

I’ve been on a weird poetry kick lately and I found this gem at my town’s Barnes and Noble. 100_0144.JPGBy “this gem” I mean the Johnny Cash poetry collection. I cannot even begin to articulate how much I love Johnny Cash. He was my childhood friend and I will probably request “Highwayman” to play at my funeral. I will be getting a Johnny tattoo at some point.

Have a great weekend; I will hopefully have the time to write again, soon

Carry on,

The Book Witch

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Thankful for Youtube Tutorials + Good Highlighter

I’m taking a break from Facebook for a few days; I am one of the millions of human beings who struggles with deep rooted mental illness and sometimes it makes me feel better to just exercise control over very insignificant things – it reminds me that there are so many aspects of my life that will never go the way I want them to, but I can always tackle the world one niche at a time.

Speaking of things to tackle, I have been watching lots of tutorials on YouTube about taking photos! I learned, and don’t judge me (I know that this is super basic rule #1 and I should’ve known already) that lighting is very,  very important. I know, I told you in advance. So, I played around with it today and….

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KODAK Digital Still Camera

ITS SO MUCH BETTER THAN THE KIND OF PICTURES I WAS CONVINCED THAT I WOULD BE TAKING FOREVER.

I got another book about DSLR tricks so that’s on my list of tasks to conquer this weekend. I’ve mostly been teaching myself by playing with buttons and watching YouTube tutorials. I love YouTube, it’s surprisingly educational and I’m fairly certain there’s a video for everything. If you’re angry because there’s not a video for something and you think there should be, make one. I watched some videos about flat-lays, which is the primary kind of pictures that I’ve been posting here and to my Bookstagram (@_bookwitchblog, I know you were wondering). Inspired, I grabbed my paperback copy of Raven Boys and some props (I say props because I don’t know how to explain the coyote bones that I collect or the massive amounts of crystals that I own).

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I think it turned out cute, look what Chandler did! I’m gonna go to Michaels when I can and get some new paper for the background – marbles, water, and whatnot. I also need to collect things to supplement my books. Books are friends and thus, need friends.

Also, are you guys makeup collectors like me? Incidentally, my love of makeup started through books. The first reason is that I had a couple thrift store books growing up that were all about the history of makeup and makeup artists. I adored those books. Secondly, I love book-character inspired makeup. I used to play around with Katniss themed smokey eyes when I was younger. I really think that makeup is either really loved or really hated; I think the creativity that people employ when applying their makeup is amazing. I have seen some of the most mind-blowing expressions of talent on Instagram, Tumblr and Facebook. Let me know if you’ve ever done a book-themed makeup, hair, or fashion look – I would love to see it.

Anyway, thanks for looking! I have a feeling that I will love experimenting with this project.

Carry on,

The Book Witch

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Review of Raven Boys & Seven Black Diamonds

GUUYYYYSSS!!! Guess who’s back? It’s my laptop, Donia! laptopI picked her up from the Geek Squad today. She’s all better (hopefully) and performing much better than when she left. Yes, my laptop is also named after a fictional character. Judge me – I dare you. I can now start my epic journey of editing the terrible photos that I’ve taken with Manon (the name of my camera; hold tight, kids, its going to be a weird ride).

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So, in other news. I finished The Raven Boys and I can sum it up in two words: holy shit. In my last post, I mentioned that the reason I loved Maggie Stiefvater is because she expends so much of her energy trying to make her readers fall in love with the characters… and boy, do you ever. At first I kept thinking “there is nothing special about these characters and I’m developing a severe dislike for them” and then halfway through the book, when the first thing happened and one of those precious cinnamon rolls was in harm’s way, I almost died. At that point, I realized that I had not gained one book boyfriend, but four. Also, I deeply sympathize and identify with Blue on a spiritual level. It ended, and I had already  bought the second book like four chapters ago. So, long story short, I’m absolutely ecstatic and somehow wallowing in dread as I face reading the next three books. I don’t know if my heart can handle it if anything happens to any of the characters. I might not recover.

I also finished Seven Black Diamonds and was surprised at how much I liked the ending. She has a second book coming out soon and I’m concerned because the first one ended on such a happy note… but then again, it was very alternate-universe Wicked Lovely, so maybe it will be all politics and none of my fae friends will be hurt. I liked the characters, but no where near as much as I liked my WL pals. I would shed blood over Wicked Lovely, no joke. I recommend it if you like fae books and crave Melissa’s work like I do. I’m not sure if I’ll get the second book – my TBR pile is out of control and I’m trying desperately to catch up. I don’t need the added temptation.

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I’ve been in a very thriller/creepy appreciating mood lately so if you have something that will fuck with my head, please tell me immediately. I will love you forever and will be your own personal tiny ball of rage and emotions.

Have a great week, everyone.

Carry on,

The Book Witch

 

 

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