Home Alone!! ๐ŸŒป Weekly Vlog Wednesday

Vlog from week 25 of 2020๐Ÿ˜Š

Links to the books mentioned:

My Sister, the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite

Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

The Ghost Brigades by John Scalzi

Pax by Sara Pennypacker

The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin

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May 2020 ๐Ÿ“š Book Haul

Where I show you the books I bought in the month of May ๐Ÿ“š

Links to all the books:

Tales of North Mythology by Helen A. Guerber

My Sister the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite

House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas

Carrie by Stephen King

Wizard and Glass by Stephen King

Old Man’s War by John Scalzi

The Ghost Brigades by John Scalzi

The Last Colony by John Scalzi

Shirley Jackson: A Rather Haunted Life by Ruth Franklin

Cabal by Clive Barker

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The Uninhabitable Earth by David Wallace-Wells ๐Ÿ“š BOOK REVIEW

My review of The Uninhabitable Earth by David Wallace-Wells ๐Ÿ“š

I listened to an audiobook edition of The Uninhabitable Earth.

Genre: Non-fiction, Environment

Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd.

Originally published: February 19th, 2019

Pages: 336 (paperback)

Audiobook length: 9 hrs

Synopsis by the publisher:

It is worse, much worse, than you think.

The slowness of climate change is a fairy tale, perhaps as pernicious as the one that says it isn’t happening at all, and if your anxiety about it is dominated by fears of sea-level rise, you are barely scratching the surface of what terrors are possible, even within the lifetime of a teenager today.

Over the past decades, the term “Anthropocene” has climbed into the popular imagination – a name given to the geologic era we live in now, one defined by human intervention in the life of the planet. But however sanguine you might be about the proposition that we have ravaged the natural world, which we surely have, it is another thing entirely to consider the possibility that we have only provoked it, engineering first in ignorance and then in denial a climate system that will now go to war with us for many centuries, perhaps until it destroys us. In the meantime, it will remake us, transforming every aspect of the way we live-the planet no longer nurturing a dream of abundance, but a living nightmare.

My thoughts:

I was equally intrigued as I was terrified of diving into this book. Being very environmentally aware and being told upfront that it’s even worse than we think, that’s enough to get my pulse rising.
But scared or not, I think it is so important to keep ourselves educated on what is going on around us, and climate change is happening to every one of us, everywhere on the planet. And even though some like to deny it (I’m not going to mention names, but I’m pretty sure certain famous faces pops into most people’s head when I mention this) we have come so far and know so much now that it seems like complete ignorance to face the other way. And after reading/listening to this book, the knowledge of what has already happened, and what the worst-case scenario might be in the future, ignoring climate change isn’t an option anymore.

The Uninhabitable earth is a very interesting read based on scientific research from multiple sources, and it is also terrifying! I like how Wallace-Wells tries to have a somewhat light tone to this heavy and dark subject because even though we are headed in a certain direction where even the best-case scenario looks pretty grim, there’s always hope. Hope and a possibility for change, but we have to acknowledge how big of a problem this actually is, and how much work that needs to be done for us to make it better.

I wish that this book would make it into school curriculums around the world. Exposing children to this kind of grim info might not be the way to go, but I think that young adults (and a lot of adults for that matter) could really benefit from having this knowledge when making the choices that they do in this world.

The Uninhabitable Earth is a book that needs to be read, and sooner rather than later! I will keep on recommending this book to everyone I know because I think it is such an important work of non-fiction that deserves and needs get more praise and attention!

If we are going to change the future we have to get as much knowledge of the past and the present as possible. It starts with knowing, and I think this book is one of many great options when it comes to acquiring knowledge about climate change and what it does.

Highly, highly recommend, even though it is an uncomfortable read!

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I’ve Been Uneducated and Naive. I’m Sorry!

A wake up call!

Over the last few weeks, our focus around the world has had a major shift from pandemic to racism and Black Lives Matter.

I wish that the reality was that we didn’t need this movement. That we as people understood that all lives matter, no matter how they look, where they come from, or how they define themselves. But the truth of the matter is that this is a movement that should’ve been bigger a long time ago. It should’ve gotten the attention it’s gotten now way sooner.
The fact that so many black men and women had to die before we got to where we are now is so sad and hard to swallow.

I’ve had the luxury of growing up as white, in a country where racism isn’t as showcased and as visibly frequent as it is in many other countries. And because of that, I’ve made the mistake of being naive and uneducated on the subject. For this, I am truly sorry!

I’ve always known that racism was alive, but I haven’t spent enough energy and time on educating myself on the subject or being the best ally that I could be.
This is going to change. As a book blogger and BookTuber, I need to prioritize reading more books about the subject, but also to read broadly by choosing books written by black authors. I need to be a more diverse reader on so many levels.
I also need to sit down and watch the documentaries and have the conversations and discussions that are uncomfortable.

I need to stand up for others and use my voice whenever I come across racism.
I’m ashamed when I think about how many times I’ve heard family members tell racist jokes that made me cringe on the inside, and yet I didn’t say a word. I’m sorry about that too!

I will work harder and do better, not just right now, but for the rest of my life. I will put in the work and the time, and I wish I’d have done it sooner.
I’m sorry that I’ve allowed myself to keep quiet! I’m sorry that I haven’t educated myself more! I’m sorry that I didn’t realize just how bad this is before now!

And I know that a few apologies from my little corner of the internet don’t change much, but it’s a start. It’s a start that so many of us need to make.
As I mentioned, I wish we didn’t have to be here, but now that we are, I’m grateful for the wake up call! I definitely needed it, and I know that I’m not alone in this!

May 2020 ๐Ÿ“š Wrap Up

Talking about the books I read in the month of May ๐Ÿ“š

Links to all the books:

Death Note Vol. 1 by Tsugumi Ohba

Old Man’s War by John Scalzi

Night Film by Marisha Pessl

Night of the Half Angel by A. Charles Ross

Dawn of the Half Angel by A. Charles Ross

The Uninhabitable Earth by David Wallace-Wells

House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas

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House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas ๐Ÿ“š BOOK REVIEW

My review of House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas ๐Ÿ“š

I read a paperback edition of House of Earth and Blood. This is the first book in the Crescent City series.

Genre:ย Fantasy, Romance

Publisher:ย Bloomsbury Publishing

Originally published:ย March 3rd, 2020

Pages:ย 816 (paperback)

Synopsis by the publisher:

Bound by blood.
Tempted by desire.
Unleashed by destiny.

Bryce Quinlan had the perfect lifeโ€”working hard all day and partying all nightโ€”until a demon murdered her closest friends, leaving her bereft, wounded, and alone. When the accused is behind bars but the crimes start up again, Bryce finds herself at the heart of the investigation. Sheโ€™ll do whatever it takes to avenge their deaths.

Hunt Athalar is a notorious Fallen angel, now enslaved to the Archangels he once attempted to overthrow. His brutal skills and incredible strength have been set to one purposeโ€”to assassinate his bossโ€™s enemies, no questions asked. But with a demon wreaking havoc in the city, heโ€™s offered an irresistible deal: help Bryce find the murderer, and his freedom will be within reach.

As Bryce and Hunt dig deep into Crescent Cityโ€™s underbelly, they discover a dark power that threatens everything and everyone they hold dear, and they find, in each other, a blazing passionโ€”one that could set them both free, if theyโ€™d only let it.

My thoughts:

I loved The Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas and devoured those, and I did enjoy the first book in the A Court of Thorns and Roses series (even though I haven’t gotten around to the next books in the series yet), so when I heard that Maas was writing a series for an adult audience I was very intrigued.
I heard mixed things about the books before going into it, and it seemed like it was either a love or hate relationship for most readers.

House of Earth and Blood is a chunker of a book (it seems like I’m quite into big books these days), coming in at a little over 800 pages.
What I think Maas does so well in previous books is making these really interesting and fantastical worlds come to life with a more subtle way of introducing the world she builds so that it doesn’t become super confusing.
In this one, however, I felt a bit lost for a while at the beginning. There were names and lifeforms thrown left and right, and I found myself feeling a little confused. This also took away my ability to connect with the characters early on in the story. That being said, the world-building that Sarah J. Maas has done in this series (and others before that) is impressive! After a little while, I did feel less confused and managed to just focus on the story and the characters.

When it comes to the characters I like that there are so many different beings and fantastical elements to them. It makes for an interesting cast of characters with endless possibilities. When it came to Bryce and Hunt I struggled to feel a connection with them. I was curious to see where the story would take them and found that part very exciting and interesting, but I did not get fully invested in the characters. It got better along the way though, but I didn’t find myself even close to being as invested in them as I’ve been with her other characters in previous books.

I also had some issues with the sexual tension throughout this book. For those of you who’ve stuck around for a while, you know that I have no problem with some steamy content in literature! But for some reason, it felt like all the sexual tension between Bryce and Hunt (and there’s a lot of it) felt like it was a part of the story just for the sake of having a lot of adult/sexual content. In some ways, it just felt a bit forced at times. I can’t really put my finger on exactly what it was that made it feel that way, but for whatever reason it just didn’t work as well for me as it did for a lot of other readers. I’m not saying that I would’ve wanted zero sexual tension between the characters, that wouldn’t have felt natural either, but I think it was more the amount of it being thrown into the story at all times that just made it less enjoyable for me.

That being said, this is a page-turner of a book! It did not feel like reading an 800+ pages book at all, and I flew through it pretty quickly. Maas writes action and drama so well and that’s one of the many reasons why Maas is on the list as one of my favorite authors. She also writes brilliant female characters that are really strong, but in no way perfect. So, even though she writes stories that are out of this world, a lot of the character, drama, and conflict feels relatable.

So all in all it was a very enjoyable, action-packed and interesting read with a lot of interesting characters, but unfortunately I didn’t manage to get as invested in them as I would have liked to.

If you’re a fan of other books by Maas then I’m pretty sure you’ll like this one as well, but it is going to be a little bit of a different reading experience even though her writing style definitely shines through.

This story has potential to get very interesting, and I will pick up the next book in the series because I’m curious to see what happens next.

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