The Bookshelf Corner

A creative space for all things books and writing….


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How I Organize My Books

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One of the fun parts about owning books is organizing them. There is just something so calming and exciting about organizing one’s beloved treasures. Then afterwards you get to marvel at the beauty that is your too meticulously arranged books. A perfectly legit book nerd pastime. And there are so many way books can be displayed by:

  • Title: A to Z
  • Title: Favorite to Least Favorite
  • Author: First Name A to Z
  • Author: Last Name A to Z
  • Author: Favorite to Least
  • Color
  • Height
  • Page Count
  • Hardcover to Paperback
  • Series: A to Z
  • Standalone: A to Z
  • Publication Date

and so on.

I actually don’t own a bookshelf (sadness!), so I use whatever space is available but will also showcase my darling books the best. I prefer to organize my books by height overall. Then I follow sub-arrangements as applicable:

  • If there’s a series printed the same way, I go by book 1 to last (left to right).
  • If it’s books of the same height but different authors, I go by a visually appealing transition (like this book’s spine looks good next to this one).
  • Non-series authors or authors I have random books from are positioned by page count (and/or by publication date if applicable).
  • Hardcover books tend to precede paperbacks (the par for course).

It seems like such a silly thing, I know, but it works for me and makes my books look beautiful. Next time I rearrange my books, I’ll probably try by color or author.


Question for you: How do you organize your books?


As Always, Happy Reading!!!

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Summer Reading 2018 List!

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A Possibility of Whales by Karen Rivers

Black Butler (Volumes 23-25)

Fruits Basket (Volume 17 to end)

Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard (Red Queen, book 2)

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo (Six of Crows, book 1)

Star In The Morning by Lynn Kurland (A Novel of the Nine Kingdoms, book 1) (2nd Read)

With Every Breath by Lynn Kurland (MacLeod, book 7) (2nd Read)

The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale (The Books of Bayern, book 1) (2nd Read)


These are all the books I would like to get through this summer. However, I’m not gonna push myself to finish this entire list because I know I most likely won’t have the time. I’ve changed this list so many times but this final version seems right for the summer. I’m excited and curious about the possibilities of the stories here. Whatever happens I’ll get through them all eventually.

What books are on your summer reading list this year?


As Always, Happy Reading!


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Mid-Year Look-Back: Top 5 Favorite Books of 2018 (so far)

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2018 has been an exciting year for books for me. There have been surprisingly fantastic reads, reads that made me feel the feels and swoon, and some I didn’t expect to be disappointments. But it’s still been a good reading year.

I’ve managed to read 64 books so far and surpass my Goodreads Reading Challenge goal earlier than last year.

I recently posted my 100th book review to this blog, which was amazing.

I read books by 19 new authors that I haven’t read from before.

Obsessively read 39 volumes of manga (and probably consumed equally as much anime).

But the best thing has been being able to share this crazy passion for books with all of you and in turn discovering new books/authors from you. So thank you thank you to you lovely people. May your book hunting and reading be ever more fortuitous. 🙂

Here are my favorite books of 2018 so far (titles lead to my reviews):

Black Butler by Yana Toboso, Translated by Tomo Kimura (Volumes 1-22)

Mastiff by Tamora Pierce (2nd Read)

Turtles All the Way Down by John Green

Herding Cats by Sarah Andersen (ARC review)

Holding Up the Universe by Jennifer Niven


How are you all doing on your TBR lists? What are your favorite books that you’ve read so far this year?

As Always, Happy Reading!!!



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Happy Book Release Day! to How We Roll by Natasha Friend

Thank you again to NetGalley and Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR) of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group for providing me with an e-ARC to read and review.

*title/author link leads to my review of How We Roll*


Image via NetGalley

How We Roll by Natasha Friend

Genre: Young Adult Contemporary
Rating:  4 out of 5
Recommend to Others?: Yes

 

Summary (via NetGalley):
Quinn is a teen who loves her family, skateboarding, basketball, and her friends, but after she’s diagnosed with a condition called alopecia which causes her to lose all of her hair, her friends abandon her. Jake was once a star football player, but because of a freak accident—caused by his brother—he loses both of his legs. Quinn and Jake meet and find the confidence to believe in themselves again, and maybe even love.


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MORE Books Added To My TBR List

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More books to read! Yay! The ones below are a mix of definites, most liklies, and we’ll sees. But it’s always exciting when you can add a ton of new books to your TBR list.


Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo (Six of Crows, book 1)
I passed on this originally, but recently re-read the synopsis and felt that this could actually be a story I would like. I’ve never read any books by this author so who knows what will happen.

King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo (Nikolai, book 1)
This may sound silly but I added this mostly because of the cover and somewhat because of the synopsis and title. I saw this cover on Twitter the day it was released and fell in love – is that even possible? This is probably one of the most gorgeous covers I’ve ever seen. Since the book doesn’t come out until Jan 2019 and involves a character from Six of Crows, it’ll probably be a long while before I’d get to this book. But I wanted to add it regardless.

The Cruel Prince by Holly Black (The Folk of the Air, book 1)
I’m no stranger to Holly Black’s books and writing. At first I wasn’t sure if I would like this book – I didn’t think it was the right story for me at the time or at all. But Black does all things fae well so maybe it could turn out to be a good read. I’d like to give it a try.

Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard (Red Queen, book 2)
It’s been a little over a year since I’ve read Red Queen, which I loved. I think the reason it’s taken me so long to continue this series is because of the conflict and everything was so terrifyingly good I didn’t think I was emotionally ready to continue reading. But with the series finally coming to an end and now that I’ve caught up on several books that have been long-since back-logged, perhaps it’s time to get back to it and see this through to the end. I’ve only added book two (for now).

The Red Fox Clan by John Flanagan
According to Goodreads, this title won’t be released until Aug 2018. I’m not sure if I’ll read it based on the synopsis. But it’s a book by John Flanagan so I added it to the list.

Taken by Tuesday by Catherine Bybee (The Weekday Brides, book 5)
Treasured by Thursday by Catherine Bybee (The Weekday Brides, book 7)
So I really enjoyed reading Not Quite Mine and wanted to read more of Catherine Bybee’s books. I liked what these two books are about so added them. My library doesn’t have all of Bybee’s books, so I’m not following her series in order since it seems they can all be read as stand-alones.


Have you read any of these books? If so, what did you think of them? What new books have you added to your TBR list recently?

As Always, Happy Reading!!!


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May Happenings!

Welcome May 2018!

A Personal Writing Challenge…

This month I am challenging myself to 1) finish a manuscript and 2) write two short stories (at minimum 5 or 7 pages each). I’m hoping to spend most of my free time writing.

Spring Reading Keeps Getting Better…

I read far more than expected last month, so I’m going to try to not good too overboard with my TBR list this month and stick to just a few to read.

Currently Reading:

  • River of Dreams by Lynn Kurland (A Novel of the Nine Kingdoms, book 8)

Reading Next:

  • Down and Across by Arvin Ahmadi
  • Zenn Diagram by Wendy Brant
  • The Ancient Magnus’ Bride (Volume 1) by Kore Yamazaki, Translated by Adrienne Beck
  • From Twinkle, with Love by Sandhya Menon

Reviews Coming Soon:

  • (NetGalley) Startup Fiancé by Shilpa Mudiganti – May 2
  • (ARC) Bitten Under Fire by Heather Long (Bravo Team WOLF, book 2) – May 14

An Organized Posting Schedule…

Posts for the month of May will be on most Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays. I structured it in a way that it has a consistent “theme” for each weekday.

The Blog Posts Are Getting Slight Makeovers…

I’m creating and changing header images for some of the recurring posts I do to be more visually appealing and consistent across the blog. I’ve already gotten a head start with the “Quotes of the Day.” I changed the background for the quotes to appear on. Quotes will alternating appear on a blue or green filtered backdrop (see example from last week’s post here).

Book Recommendation of the Month

The Ruins of Gorlan by John Flanagan
Ranger’s Apprentice, book 1
First Published: 2004
Paperback Image Edition: June 8th 2006 by Puffin Books
Genres: Young Adult Fantasy, Action/Adventure

Image via Goodreads

Goodreads Summary: They have always scared him in the past — the Rangers, with their dark cloaks and shadowy ways. The villagers believe the Rangers practice magic that makes them invisible to ordinary people. And now 15-year-old Will, always small for his age, has been chosen as a Ranger’s apprentice. What he doesn’t yet realize is that the Rangers are the protectors of the kingdom. Highly trained in the skills of battle and surveillance, they fight the battles before the battles reach the people. And as Will is about to learn, there is a large battle brewing. The exiled Morgarath, Lord of the Mountains of Rain and Night, is gathering his forces for an attack on the kingdom. This time, he will not be denied…. 


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AS ALWAYS, HAPPY READING AND HAPPY WRITING!


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2018 Reading Challenge Complete!!!

as of 4/24/18

Earlier this week, I reached my goal of 50 books to read this year as a part of the Goodreads 2018 Reading Challenge. I did not expect to finish so soon in the year as it took me far longer last year with a 30-book goal.

The past two months I’ve just been whisking through books one after another in short periods of time. Also, I read a lot of manga of which I devoured three to four volumes in a day at a time. There’s been just so many good reads that have held my attention regardless of the post-read ratings.

Below you’ll find all of the titles I’ve read for the challenge up until the goal reached. This includes book I haven’t official reviewed yet as well as 10 post-read thoughts and review excerpts.

Enjoy!


Manga

Black Butler by Yana Toboso, Translated by Tomo Kimura
(read during challenge: Volumes 1-18)
(Volume 1 Review)

Volume 1 Image via Goodreads

I am enjoying this manga immensely. I had planned to pace the reading of this out but it’s just too good that I kept checking out volume after volume from the library. There’s just so much…right with this manga and the art is absolutely gorgeous.

Volume 1 Review Excerpt: “I really like this manga. I love each character – the main characters are so charming, especially Sebastian and Ciel! I love all the humor throughout – I laughed a lot. And I was completely surprised at every turn.”

 

Fruits Basket by Natsuki Takaya, Translated by Alethea Nibley & Athena Nibley
(read during challenge: Volumes 1-16)
(Volumes 1-5 combined review)

 

ARCs/NetGalley

Baby, I’m Howling For You by Christine Warren (ARC)
Alphaville, book 1

Image via NetGalley

I can definitely get behind this series. Shifters – wolves in particular – are my favorite of the paranormal/supernatural sub-genre. This book was just too too good and I need to read book 2 asap!

Review Excerpt: “First off, I fell head over heels over the fact that Renny is a librarian and Mick is a graphic novelist. *insert book-nerdish swoon* That alone deserves all the stars in the world. But of course, that was the cherry atop the sundae for my love of these two characters.”

 

Tess of the Road by Rachel Hartman (ARC)

Fade to Us by Julia Day (ARC)

Image via NetGalley

There’s so much to love and admire about this novel, specifically the sister-sister relationship that develops. Brooke and Natalie make this book: from the conflict with each other to the conflict they have with other people to the conflict they have with themselves.

Review Excerpt: “Great story. Wonderful characters. Pretty cover. Awesome that musical theater was involved. And loved the sister-sister relationship. Fade to Us deserves a standing ovation. Brava, Julia Day, brava!”

 

Henry Hodges Needs a Friend by Andy Andrews, Illustrated by Colleen Madden (NetGalley)

Herding Cats by Sarah Andersen (ARC)

Image via NetGalley

For laughs, cats, telling memes, and insightful art, I highly recommend reading this graphic novel. It’s so light and funny but unapologetically serious about the life of an introvert and arts.

Review Excerpt: “Fantastic. Hilarious. Just what a creative person (and everyone) needs to hear and see. Herding Cats by Sarah Andersen is an art and narrative to be experienced.”

 

Blood Veil by Megan Erickson (ARC review)

The Stupendously Spectacular Spelling Bee by Deborah Abela (NetGalley review)

Image via Goodreads

I think this a novel to be added onto every TBR list if you like middle grade novels. Young readers will learn about perseverance, self-worth, failure, triumph, friendship, and a whole host of new vocabulary words. It’s a great story told really well.

Review Excerpt: “Truly…a stupendously sweet and spectacular story…It’s light, charming, wholesome, and educational”

 

Bitten Under Fire by Heather Long (ARC Review Coming Soon)
Startup Fiancé by Shilpa Mudiganti (NetGalley Review Coming Soon)

 

Novels

Holding Up the Universe by Jennifer Niven

Image via Goodreads

The YA narrative version of the song “This Is Me” in a nutshell. The struggles experienced and message that saturates this novel are truths that ring long past the story is over. I can’t help but reflect when I think about this novel: that in-your-face awareness of the flaws you perceived to be true and the flaws others see in you they believe to be true until you reach that moment when you realize you are human. This was just a really poignant YA novel and fantastic read.

Review Excerpt:Holding Up the Universe by Jennifer Niven is written with grace and style, creating a daring and enriching story that reminds you that you are wanted.”

 

Slammed by Colleen Hoover
The Winter King by C. L. Wilson
Heart on Fire by Amanda Bouchet

Tempests and Slaughter by Tamora Pierce
The Numair Chronicles, book 1

Image via Goodreads

The nostalgia is real! I am in love with the writing and how the story was told. The author has truly outdone herself this time. I just need to know what happens next now. 2019 (the expected publication year) is so far away.

Review Excerpt: “The story I’ve been waiting to read for years did not disappoint. Nostalgic, exhilarating, tumultuous, and bittersweet; I am left one very happy reader.”

Tortall: A Spy’s Guide by Tamora Pierce
(with Julie Holderman, Timothy Liebe, Megan Messinger)

Image via Goodreads

I never thought I’d enjoy what is essentially a compilation text book, but this was so captivating to read. I learned so much more about George’s work and the world of Tortall – too much to remember, but still! This was perfect to read after spending years reading all of Pierce’s other books.

Review Excerpt: “But I really enjoyed reading more about one of my favorite fantasy worlds. It was a pleasant and delightful reading experience – so compelling I could hardly put it down.”

 

Burn Bright by Patricia Briggs
Forever by Maggie Stiefvater

Turtles All the Way Down by John Green

Image via Goodreads

I went through a back and forth with this book before even picking it up. At first, I was looking forward to reading it, then I wasn’t sure if I still wanted to read it, then I was like I think I do want to read it, and then I was back on the I-want-to read-but-don’t-know-when-I’ll-get-to-read-it phase. It wasn’t until there came a stretch of days where I needed (ahahaha, I always “need” a book to read) a quick read and decided on this. I’m so happy I did because it was better than I thought it was going to be. The book just made my admiration for John Green soar higher. Turtles All The Way Down is an incredibly brilliant story I’d recommend to everyone.

Review Excerpt: “Aza is a fantastic character and individual…Her narrative is incredibly raw and, in my opinion, an accurate representation of what the inside of a truly anxious mind looks and feels like. “

 

Scorpion Mountain by John Flanagan
The Ghostfaces by John Flanagan
The Caldera by John Flanagan

 

2nd Reads

Mastiff by Tamora Pierce
Beka Cooper, book 3

Image via Goodreads

This is how you craft an intricate, captivating plot with highly compelling characters smack-dab in the middle of a beautifully created fantasy world where the stakes are higher than ever. I love this series but this book in particular I just love so much.

Review Excerpt:Mastiff is one of those stories that stays with you long after the story is over. It’s one of my favorite books of all time. I loved it even more the second time around, though it didn’t make dealing with the conflict of the story any easier. Still, Mastiff is a book that will easily exceed all expectations.”

 

A Dance Through Time by Lynn Kurland


If you’ve taken up Goodreads’ challenge, how far along are you currently? What books are you hoping to get through before the year is out? I’d love to hear your thoughts.

AS ALWAYS, HAPPY READING!!!

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