Our Monthly Wrap-Up (#9)

Morning Lovelies,

This month started off strong but then it just went to the wayside. I'm totally blaming the US disastrous election for my lack of reviews and features. I've been so upset and consumed and also dealing with life that I've kind of just been hibernating. I have been binging on a new show on Netflix and I've picked up a book from the library from an author I used to read before blogging, Tami Hoag. So there's been some reading at least.

In November I read:
ON BROKEN WINGS by Chanel Cleeton
Queue up on my phone/iPad/laptop:

I started watching Supernatural and I'm HOOKED! I just started season 6 and since I'm so behind, season 12 is on right now, I'm being very careful in trying not to spoil myself. 

I watched the Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life and you can read about my thoughts on the discussion post I wrote here.
I recently discovered the band Anthem Lights and their covers of the Backstreet Boys, Justin Timberlake, and Bruno Mars just to name a few, and I'm in love. I have them playing over and over as I type up this post, my job applications, my thoughts. Everything. Eventually, I'll listen to their original singles.

So, how was your November? What did you read? Watch any new show, listen to anything new or old? What did you think of the Gilmore Girls revival? And are you a Supernatural fan? Tell me what you did! Just as long as you don't give me any spoiler from Supernatural! See you down below.

Let's Chat Non-Bookish Edition: In Which I Talk Gilmore Girls Revival

So, I have many thoughts I need to get off my chest. I’m a HUGE fan of the show Gilmore Girls and if you may or may not have known, there was a revival called A Year in the Life that premiered on Netflix on November 25th. And after waiting almost 10 years after the original show ended, I was over the moon excited about this revival. I was counting down the days and it was a bright light after the disastrous election results (more on that later). However, after finally watching all four, 90-minutes episodes, it left a lot to be desired. So I’m going to talk about it and if you haven’t watched or don’t want to be spoiled, I suggest to look away because SPOILERS GALORE!

Luke and Lorelai:
While I am happy to see that they’re still together, Lorelai being all cute and refilling his salt shakers or picking up plates at the diner in order to help him and Luke just going along with her antics and allowing her to fill up the DVR with all the Lifetime movies, are you telling me that it took them 10 years to get married? That they never discussed getting married or having kids in the years they’ve been together? What exactly do they talk about? They used they excuse that they thought the other would approach it if they wanted to but honestly, that doesn’t really justify letting 10 years go by without talking about what they want from each other. It seems to me that the creator, Amy Sherman-Palladino (ASP), didn’t allow these characters to grow up after 10 years. I wouldn’t care if they hadn’t gotten married because they don’t believe in marriage, but they were engaged at one point in their relationship and had even discussed having kids. So seeing them get married in the revival was a little bittersweet because I thought it should have happened ages ago. I would have been more than okay with seeing flashbacks of the wedding or nothing at all because I know that they had been married already. I will say that Luke’s long ranting speech (like a true Gilmore, btw) melted my heart and Lorelai just easy breezy telling him that she already had the day picked for the wedding, and on a day that he’s able to get away from the diner, just gave me all the feels because they are so right for each other.

Richard’s Death:
One of my favorite things about the revival was how they handled Richard’s death. I cried every time he was mentioned because his presence was certainly missed. The grief that all three Gilmore women expressed for their missed companion/father was palpable. There were certain scenes that I could have easily pictured Richard’s smart and quick wit.

Emily’s story:
You can’t talk about Richard’s death and not mention Emily. Emily’s story was the one that I’m most content with. It was heartbreaking to watch her inner struggles of trying to cope with her grief of losing her best friend and partner of 50 years. It was made even harder to watch as she pushed Lorelai away (for reasons that are to be blamed on both women) because she was filled with such grief. But they were both in such pain that they didn’t know how to reach out for help or seek comfort in each other. However, seeing her close a chapter of her life, both personally and socially, it was still shocking for me seeing her attempt to move on by moving out of the home she shared with Richard. But in hindsight, I would probably do the same thing.

And finally, Rory:
Ok, this is going to be a long one so I’ll start with her career. Look, I love that she’s struggling in getting steady work. I love it because it’s realistic in today’s workforce. Print media has been struggling since before she graduated and the landscape was and still is changing, and in today’s world, some people her age are still struggling in finding their passion. Now, ahem, the relationships. I don’t like cheating. Like, it one of my most hated acts. Whenever I read/watch/hear about cheating, I get angry because I want to tell that person to put on their big girl panties or to grow a pair and end the relationship if you want to sleep with someone else. So seeing Rory fall into bed with my favorite guy for her and knowingly sleeping with him while they’re in a relationship with other people and he’s engaged! Like, what?! Didn’t she learn anything from the way she and Dean ended?? Like, I don’t fully get their reasoning in continuing the affair. Especially when you can tell that they both have feelings for the other but neither one of them is willing to broach the subject.

Which brings to two points, the last four words and ASP. Amy Sherman-Palladino said that she had planned these four words since the beginning and that it was always supposed to happen. Also, she has said that Logan was set up to be Rory’s Christopher. And I gotta tell you I am upset. Logan has surpassed Christopher in so many ways and so I resent that she’s still ended using that formula for him. I don’t necessarily care for the last four words, I prefer it wasn’t them but at least it didn’t happen when she had just graduated, but I hate what it’ll mean for Rory. ASP kept writing throughout the whole revival how it ends in “full freaking circle” but to me it kind of a cop-out; after everything Rory went through, all to end up like single-mom, Lorelai.

I don’t believe that Logan is Rory’s Christopher because he grew up and he’s older than when Lorelai and Chris were in that same situation. When Rory went to talk to Chris and asked him how did he feel about Lorelai raising Rory alone, I can take it to mean that she’s struggling to not tell Logan about the pregnancy or that she’s set on doing it on her like her mother. However, the Logan I have grown to know, he would step up to the plate and be the person that he needs to be. He loves Rory and you can see from the way he tried to take care her. With Rory, you can see from the way she struggled to give him up to his fiancĂ© that she still loves him. However, I think she also knows that he is marrying for the benefit of his family so she doesn’t want to rock the boat. But SERIOUSLY! Cheating? Why???

My only hope is that if Netflix and ASP do decide to continue the show, that they’ll give Logan a fighting chance. Because if Logan is Chris, then Jess is Luke and to be quite honest, Rory and Lorelai might be eerily similar but their lives don’t need to be the same. Logan and Jess don't need to be the same as Lorelai's love interest. They're different people, so please ASP, let that idea go.

On a different note, it was so awesome being back in Stars Hollow and seeing everyone. Kirk was forever the lovable weirdo and seeing Paris was so fun because her character in How To Get Away With Murder is SO different. Michel was one my favorite in the revival and although we only got one scene with her, Sookie is still a favorite. And the boys! Dean, Jess, and Logan, forever gorgeous. They have only gotten better with age.

SO! What did you think? Did you love it? Did you hate it? Were there tears? What did you think of the four words? Do you want to do Wild? I kinda want to but not by myself. I’ll buy myself something cute to distract myself from that idea a la typical Lorelai move. Tell me what you thought! Comment down below.

Quotes (#177)

Morning Friends,
I am so not ready for this week to start... I need one more day off to actually rest. I had a long weekend full of activities and now I'm ready to rest, lol. Either way happy Monday, lets get on with our quotes for the day.

“Happiness in intelligent people is the rarest thing I know.”
~ Ernest Hemingway, The Garden of Eden

“The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them.”
~Ernest Hemingway

“The world breaks everyone, and afterward, many are strong at the broken places.”
~Ernest Hemingway

“The most painful thing is losing yourself in the process of loving someone too much, and forgetting that you are special too.”
~Ernest Hemingway, Men Without Women

“When people talk, listen completely. Most people never listen.”
~Ernest Hemingway

“Every day is a new day. It is better to be lucky. But I would rather be exact. Then when luck comes you are ready.”
~Ernest Hemingway, The Old Man and the Sea

“Courage is grace under pressure.”
~Ernest Hemingway

Have a great week!

Quotes (#176)

Morning Swooner,
It's finally Thanksgiving week!!! Thanksgiving is one of my favorite times of the year. I love getting together with the entire family and eating way too much food. What I like the most is the warm feeling that comes with this time of year.

We are thankful for family, friends, our health, that we have a roof over our heads, and food to eat. We are also very thankful for you our readers!

“Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.”
~Marthe Troly-Curtin, Phrynette Married

“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.”

~ Mahatma Gandhi

“There's nothing like deep breaths after laughing that hard. Nothing in the world like a sore stomach for the right reasons.”
~Stephen Chbosky, The Perks of Being a Wallflower

“Count your age by friends, not years. Count your life by smiles, not tears.”
~John Lennon

“It isn't what you have or who you are or where you are or what you are doing that makes you happy or unhappy. It is what you think about it.”
~Dale Carnegie, How to Win Friends and Influence People

“Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.”

~Marcel Proust

“I've got nothing to do today but smile.”
~Paul Simon

We hope you have a wonderful week and holiday season!!

Waiting on Wednesday (#159)

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spinethat spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

Morning swooners!

This week pre-publication "can't wait to read" selection is:
Expected Release Date: November 28, 2016

Jillian Lima’s whole world was destroyed in a span of a few hours. The same night her childhood love, Brock ‘the Beast’ Mitchell, broke her heart, her life was irrevocably altered by the hand of a stranger with a gun. It takes six years to slowly glue together the shattered pieces of her life, but Jillian is finally ready to stop existing in a past full of pain and regret. She takes a job at her father’s martial arts Academy and she’s going out on her first date since a failed relationship that was more yuck than yum. Jillian is determined to start living.

She just never expected Brock to be a part of her life again. But he’s firmly back in her life before she knows it, and not only is he older, he’s impossibly more handsome, more teasing and more everything. And when he sees Jillian, he’s no longer capable of thinking of her as the little girl who was his shadow growing up or the daughter of the man who gave him a second chance at life. He sees the woman who’d always been there for him, the one person who believed in him no matter what.

Brock knows she’s the one he should’ve made his, and what begins as a tentative friendship quickly turns to red-hot chemistry that sparks a flame that burns brighter than lust. Falling for Brock again risks more than her heart, because when the past sorrow-filled and guilt-ridden past resurfaces, and a web of lies threatens to rip them apart, the fallout could lay waste to everything they’ve fought to build together, and destroy the dreams of those they care most about.

Jennifer L. Armentrout writes some of the hottest love scenes known to man! I am a huge fan of her Wait For You series, and I can't wait to see what she has in store for us in Fire in You!!

What are you "Waiting on?"

Quotes (#175)

Morning Friends,
Last week was emotionally and physically draining for me. It is difficult for me to express the jumble of emotions I have been experiencing since last week. After much analysis of the current situation, I have decided to look on the bright side. I am hopeful everything will work out in due time. For now, I want to focus on the positive aspects of life. I am looking forward to the Holiday season! Spending time with friends and family is the medicine for the soul. I hope these quotes inspire you as much as they inspire me.

"We believe in ordinary acts of bravery, in the courage that drives one person to stand up for another."
~Veronica RothDivergent

"Friendship ... is born at the moment when one man says to another "What! You too? I thought that no one but myself . . ."

~C.S. Lewis, The Four Loves

"Don't think or judge, just listen."

~Sarah Dessen, Just Listen

“What you're supposed to do when you don't like a thing is change it. If you can't change it, change the way you think about it. Don't complain.”

~Maya Angelou, Wouldn't Take Nothing for My Journey Now

“You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them.”

~Maya Angelou, Letter to My Daughter

“Have enough courage to trust love one more time and always one more time.”
~Maya Angelou

“You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it.”
~Maya Angelou

Have peaceful week friends.

Second Chance Read: Last Sacrifice by Richelle Mead

Last Sacrifice (Vampire Academy #6)
Author: Richelle Mead
Release Date: December 7, 2010
Publisher: Penguin Audio
Format: Audiobook
Source: Overdrive/Library
Review by: Jenn
Read by Emily Shaffer

Murder. Love. Jealousy. And the ultimate betrayal. Now, with Rose on trial for her life and Lissa first in line for the Royal Crown, nothing will ever be the same between them.

4 stars out of 5 stars

Reading Last Sacrifice in audiobook version reminded me how much I love this series. The narrator captivated me with the way she told Richelle's story and made it come alive in a different medium. Her Russian accent to portray Dimitri Belikov (my love!) was a little funny at times but certainly made the story all the more authentic. I certainly want to go back and listen to all the books but unfortunately, my library doesn't have the audiobooks on their collections.

If you haven't picked up this series, I really implore you to do so. It's so good! And if the rest of the audiobooks are as good as this one, you won't regret it.

Mini Review: The Best Possible Answer by E. Katherine Kottaras

The Best Possible Answer
Author: E. Katherine Kottaras
Release Date: November 1, 2016
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley/St. Martin's Griffin
Review by: Jenn
AP Exams – check

SAT test – check

College Application – check

Date the wrong guy and ruin everything you’ve spent your whole life working for– check Ultra-high-achiever Viviana Rabinovich-Lowe has always had a plan—and no room to be anything less than perfect. But her quest for perfection comes to a screeching halt when her boyfriend leaks racy pictures of her to the entire school. Making matters worse, her parents might be getting divorced and now her perfect family is falling apart. For the first time, Viviana feels like a complete and utter failure.

Then she gets a job working at the community pool, where she meets a new group of friends who know nothing about her past. That includes Evan, a gorgeous (and really nice!) guy who makes her want to do something she never thought she’d do again: trust. For the first time in her life, Viviana realizes she can finally be whoever she wants. But who is that? While she tries to figure it out, she learns something they never covered in her AP courses: that it’s okay to be less than perfect, because it’s our imperfections that make us who we are.
2.5 stars out of 5 stars
*I received an eARC of this title from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.*

  • I'm not exactly sure how I feel about this book, you guys. It started off strong and I found myself sucked into the story but then, I don't know. I started to not really care about Viv, I guess. Her back and forth nonsense with her best friend, Sammi, and their crush on Evan, it got irritating after a while. Also, there just seems to be a lot going on that after a while I didn't care about most of them. There was the dad issue, the eccentric professor, the nude picture, the college applications, and the trust issues. There was so much going on and I feel like it could have picked a few issues, like the dad and the nude pictures, and it would have made the book so much stronger. 
  • What I did love about the book was Viv's relationship with Sammi, and her sister, Milla. 
  • I will look into the author's other book. I did like how each chapter had a SAT prep questions in the beginning. Very cute but feels like a younger YA novel.

Quotes (#174)

Morning Friends,

Happy Monday! We are one day away from the presidential elections, and I am extremely excited that these elections are almost over!!! I did my civic duty and voted, but I am so over all of the negative advertising and political hoopla. I am looking forward to things going back to normal. Well, on to our quotes.

“And I’d choose you; in a hundred lifetimes, in a hundred worlds, in any version of reality, I’d find you and I’d choose you.”
~Kiersten White, The Chaos of Stars

“I didn't fall in love with you. I walked into love with you, with my eyes wide open, choosing to take every step along the way. I do believe in fate and destiny, but I also believe we are only fated to do the things that we'd choose anyway.
~Kiersten WhiteThe Chaos of Stars

“It's all a matter of perspective. And maybe we thought we were living one story, when if we look at it a little different, we can reframe everything - all out memories and attributes and experiences - and see that we're actually living a different story.”
~Kiersten WhiteThe Chaos of Stars

“Some things, the best things, do last forever”

~Kiersten WhiteThe Chaos of Stars

“I will make wherever I am my home. Or I’ll have no home at all. Either is better than living in a past and future where I don’t belong”
~Kiersten WhiteThe Chaos of Stars

“Oh, glorious, glorious caffeine and sugar. I can make it through anything as long as I have enough of those two”
~Kiersten WhiteThe Chaos of Stars

“The fear of death can grow so large we let it keep us from living”
~Kiersten WhiteThe Chaos of Stars

Happy and peaceful election week!

Review: Unspeakable by Laura Griffin

Unspeakable (Tracers #2)
Author: Laura Griffin
Release Date: June 29, 2010
Publisher: Pocket Books
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Source: Personal Copy
Review by: Jenn


Elaina McCord’s dream of being an FBI profiler is in danger with her first case—investigating a string of murders near a Texas beach resort. The victims, all young women, were drugged and brutally murdered, their bodies abandoned in desolate marshland. Elaina’s hunch—met with disbelief by local police—is that these are only the latest offerings from a serial killer who has been perfecting his art for years, growing bolder and more cunning with each strike.

True-crime writer Troy Stockton has a reputation as an irresistible playboy who gets his story at any cost. He’s the last person Elaina should trust, let alone be attracted to. But right now Troy, along with the elite team of forensics experts known as the Tracers, are her only allies in a case that’s turning dangerously personal. A killer is reaching out to Elaina, taunting her, letting her know how ruthless he is and how close he’s getting. Now it’s not just her career that’s in danger—it’s her life…

3.5 stars out of 5 stars

Unspeakable follows Elaina, an FBI rookie agent, being sent to a small beach town in Texas to provide help in a case where she is not wanted but definitely needed. Troy, a true-crime writer, has some clout with the police department decides to help her but for personal reasons we later learn. The story follows at a steady pace which had me nervously wondering who the killer was throughout the whole book. The romance of the story wasn't exactly what I cared for but that's because I didn't see the appeal of Troy. However, I'm noticing that in Laura Griffin's books, the romance is not the only appeal of the books so I can overlook it and it'll be fine.

My only complaint was how Elaina finally get a shot at her dream job and she turns it down to be closer to Troy. She said she wanted to gain more experience but she can do that while working at her dream job. Troy is a true-crime writer, he can write from anywhere so he could have told her he would follow her instead.

I'm looking forward to reading the next book, a novella called Unstoppable. I am loving all the romantic suspense and you should definitely check out this series.

Swoony Boy of the Month: Warner from Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

Swoony Boy of the Month is our feature where we spotlight a favorite and/or swoony boy from the books we have read.

Today's Swoony Boy of the Month is Warner aka the bad boy everyone loves to hate but can't help swoon over. Warner is the ruthless, brutally honest and meticulously organized antagonist of Tahereh Mafi's Shatter Me series. It's in his honesty and willingness to love Juliette as she is that we get to know the softer side of Warner. He is poetic and has a way with words that melts my heart!

I almost forget that she still hates me, despite how hard I've fallen for her.
And I've fallen.
So hard.
I've hit the ground.
Tahereh Mafi, Destroy Me
Because I want her.
I want nothing between us.
I want her clothes off and the lights on and I want to study her. I want to unzip her out of this dress and take my time with every inch of her.
Tahereh Mafi, Destroy Me
I want to convince you to design a smile just for me.
Tahereh Mafi, Unravel Me
I'm trying to focus, telling myself these are just empty words, but I'm lying. Because somehow, just reading these words is too much; and the thought of her in pain is causing me an unbearable amount of agony.
Tahereh Mafi, Destroy Me
I want to be the friend you fall hopelessly in love with. The one you take into your arms and into your bed and into the private world you keep trapped in your head. I want to be that kind of friend," he says. "The one who will memorise the things you say as well as the shape of your lips when you say them. I want to know every curve, every freckle, every shiver of your body, Juliette-
~ Tahereh Mafi, Unravel Me

For more Warner check out Tahereh Mafi's Shatter Me series!

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