The Versatile Blogger Award

Aren’t we in a bit of an awards season? While I’m not the biggest award show person, being that the only one that I’ve watched fully was the 2016 Tonys mostly (okay, completely) because of Hamilton, I am looking forward to this year’s Emmys mainly because of Master of None and Big Little Lies.

Speaking of awards, today I’ll be doing The Versatile Blogger Award. I was nominated by Ally from Ally Writes Things, and this award was created by Delphine from Delphine the Babbler. The Versatile Blogger Award lets you know a little bit more about your blogger.


Get yourself a blogger who treats her books like how Rafiki treats newborn Simba.


  • Give an air kiss and hug to your nominator and share their links with your followers
  • Nominate 10 bloggers that you admire and don’t forget to link
  • Let your nominees know you nominated them
  • Reveal 7 facts about yourself that hasn’t been acknowledged yet before

7 Things to Know about Haley:

1.I consider myself to be a pretty athletic person, even though I admit that I prefer to curl up in bed with a book over working out. My favorite sports include field hockey, swimming, and hockey, and I love playing softball and tennis with my family.

2.I have two dogs, both rescues, and they are two of my favorite things in the world. I miss them a lot when I’m at school, but I have tons of photos of them in my dorm.


3.My favorite movie out of The Hunger Games film adaptations is Catching Fire, however, Catching Fire is my “least” favorite book in the series.

4.I have too many cardigans to count, but they are for sure the best things to wear in the fall and winter.

5.I used to be really into knitting when I was in middle school and a bit in high school. I enjoyed making scarfs the most, but my best accomplishment was my making a blanket with a crotched border.

6.Whenever I watch the Parks and Recreation episode, Ann and Chris, I cry at the end, when Ann says goodbye to Leslie (this is also a PSA to watch Parks and Recreation if you haven’t already).

7.My favorite gaming console is the Nintendo Gamecube. My siblings and I spent a lot of time this summer playing Mario Kart and Mario Superstar Baseball.

I’m not going to be nominating ten bloggers, but I will be nominating a few!

Em from Keystroke Blog

Judith from Chain Interaction

Sara from The Book Cycle


Books I Brought to College Fall 2017

Is a bedroom a bedroom without a personal library in it? I think not! While I’ve brought plenty of books for my classes this semester (I had to get 11 for one, eeep!!), I had of course bring books from my personal library. Listed below are the 9 books I’m going to try to get to this semester. Hopefully, these won’t be the only books I read, as I have a library card for my college’s town’s library system and I do go home every so often, so I can swap books in and out from my bookshelves. As I write this post, Leigh Bardugo’s Wonder Woman: Warbringer is waiting for me at home and Sarah J. Maas’s Tower of Dawn will be there soon!


The Girls by Emma Cline– I’ve seen The Girls everywhere since its release in 2016, so when I saw it on sale at the library for 50 cents, I picked it up immediately (it still had the Barnes and Noble bestseller discount sticker on it!).

Carry On by Rainbow Rowell One of my reading goals of 2017 is to reread Rainbow Rowell’s Carry On. I can’t believe it’s been almost two years since I’ve first read it!

 Another Brooklyn by Jacqueline Woodson– Jacqueline Woodson came to my school last year and she signed & personalized my copy of Another Brooklyn. Since it’s written in verse, I hope that it doesn’t take me too long to read.

The Breathless by Tara Goedjen I received an ARC of The Breathless from Underlined at Book Con this year. I’m hoping to get to The Breathless before its release date on October 10th.

One Plus One by JoJo Moyes– My local library had some amazing sales this summer, so I picked One Plus One up with a few others for only 25 cents each!

A Short History of the Girl Next Door by Jared Reck– I received an ARC of A Short History of the Girl Next Door at Book Con this year, and I’m not sure I’ll get to it before its release date on September 26th. However, the book is definitely staying on my TBR list, and I might be read it in October for the Booksplosion book of the month.

Fixing Delilah by Sarah Ockler– While I wasn’t the biggest fan of Sarah Ockler’s Bittersweet, I’ve seen Fixing Delilah float around the book community for a while and it was only 25 cents at the library.

The Walled City by Ryan Graudin– I’m pretty sure that I bought The Walled City before I went to school last year from Barnes and Noble. I really enjoyed Ryan Graudin’s Wolf by Wolf duology and everyone is loving Invictus, I’m hoping to read (and enjoy) The Walled City soon.

Black Bird of the Gallows by Meg Kassel- I met Meg Kassel at Book Con and she signed an ARC of her debut novel, Black Bird of the Gallows. The book came out of September 5th, and I think that this creepy, fantasy will be great to read around Halloween.

 I, Eliza Hamilton by Susan Holloway Scott– I received an ARC of I, Eliza Hamilton from Kensington books, and I plan on this being my next read! If you’re new around here, I am a HUGE Hamilton so I am more than excited to read this ASAP.

Review: The Thing with Feathers by McCall Hoyle

I was fortunate enough to meet McCall Hoyle at Book Con 2017, where I received an ARC of her debut novel, The Thing With Feathers.

Summary: Emilie Day is quite comfortable with playing it safe; after all, she’s been homeschooled since she was eight years old, her best friend is her service dog, and she’s pretty okay with  being the only girl on the Outer Banks of North Carolina who can’t swim. Life gets turned upside down when Emilie’s mom enrolls her in public school, not to mention the fact that within the first week, she gets paired with all star point guard Chatham York on a research project about Emily Dickinson. As Chatham shows interest in Emilie and friendships start to form, Emilie is terrified to tell anyone that she has epilepsy.

My Rating: 3.5/ 5 Stars


My (a bit spoilery) Thoughts:

The Thing with Feathers sparked my interest because it features a main protagonist who has epilepsy. I’ve never read a book with a character who is epileptic, so it was interesting to see how Emilie’s condition affected her day to day life. We see her taking new medication that helps control her seizures, interact with her service dog, Hitch, who is one my new favorite fictional dogs, and most importantly, live in fear of having a seizure at school. I understand Emilie’s fear of having a seizure in school and in public, and I wish that Hitch had been able to accompany her to school from the start. Granted, we wouldn’t have too much of a story, as Emilie must learn that she can have a life while living with epilepsy. It was fun to see her make new friends, specifically Chatham and Ayla, and see her shine as an English student. While we do get to see her hangout with Ayla and Chatham out of school, I wish we got to see Emilie doing more “normal teenage” or student type things—did she ever actually agree to writing to the lit mag??

I did not understand why it took one hundred plus pages for Emilie to tell one of her friends that she had epilepsy. Why was she so afraid to tell Chatham and Ayla about her condition? It’s not like she’s confessing that she committed a crime! Emilie wants to be able to form relationships without her epilepsy affecting them or making others wary of her. Yet, if one of my friends had a medical condition that could affect their day-to-day activity, I would want to know for their safety!

We had so many “filler” chapters where Emilie could have easily told Chatham about her epilepsy. While it was sweet seeing their relationship build, she spends half of each chapter worrying about how Chatham will react. Chatham’s little sister has Asperger’s syndrome, he wants to be a counselor one day , and he’s always volunteering—if there’s one guy that can understand Emilie, IT’S HIM! The guy recites poetry that she tutored him in for crying out now. Speaking of poetry, while I’m not the biggest Emily Dickinson fan, it was cool to see her work in the novel and how Emilie connects to her. I figured that her work would have something to do with the title.

My favorite aspect of The Thing with Feathers was the focus on Emilie’s family life, including Hitch (HITCH IS FAMILY). Hitch made my heart so happy! While she isn’t exactly family, I also enjoyed Cindy’s role in the novel, showing Emilie that you shouldn’t be afraid to speak up. It was hard seeing Emilie and her mom be so divided, between the pain that they both feel from Emilie’s father’s death and Emilie’s discomfort with her mom moving on. While it’s a bit more understandable in this case, as Emilie’s mom doesn’t know what it’s actually like to have epilepsy, we have some classic YA “my parent doesn’t get what I’m going through and I’m going to have some animosity about it.” However, throughout the novel, we see Emilie’s mom try to connect to her daughter and I’m glad by the end that both Emilie and her mother are rebuilding their relationship.

Have you read or are planning to read The Thing with Feathers? Share in the comments!

Top Five Wednesday: Classes Based on Books & Characters

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Happy back-to-school season everyone! I went back to school last week and so far, so good, besides managing to get sick within the first week of being back. Inspired by the beginning of the school year, today’s Top Five Wednesday is all about classes that you would take based on books or based on character’s skills . While we all wish we were taking Potions and Quidditch 101 at Hogwarts, there are so many other classes that’d I’d love to take part in inspired by some of my favorite books.

How to Make a Web Series 101 | Tash Hearts Tolstoy by Kathryn Ormsbee 

With the success of Unhappy Families, Tash and Jack are the queens of web series. One of my interests outside of blogging and reading include filming, and I think it would be really fun to be part of a web series. Like Tash and Jack, I’d love to be more behind-the-scenes and actually be creating the show.

Intermediate Level Baking| To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han 

If there’s just one feeling that the To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before trilogy gives me (trust me, there are plenty), it’s the inspiration to bake my butt off. Lara Jean would be the perfect baking instructor, and together we could find the perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe, even though Peter, Kitty, and Lara Jean seem to have that covered.

Computer Skills | Cress by Marissa Meyer

Cress is my favorite book in The Lunar Chronicles series, and I love how Cress helps the gang kick butt with her tech-savviness. Throw in Thorne as her teaching assistant and you have a fun & informative class all about computers and how to use them to take down an evil queen from the Moon.

Digital Arts Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia 

Eliza and Her Monsters features gorgeous illustrations that correspond to Eliza’s web comic, Monstrous Sea. I’d love to take a class with Eliza teaching me how to use drawing tablets and the editing process behind it (I’m actually hoping to take digital animation next semester).

Violin 101 | This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab

If there’s one person in the world that could teach me to play the violin, it’s August Flynn. While I wouldn’t need the soul-seeking help, August would be a great instructor.

Top 5 Wednesday is a collaborative group of book bloggers from various platforms who love sharing lists on Wednesdays. The T5W group can be found here on Goodreads.


My Summer Reading Recap

From the beginning of June to the end of August, I read a total of 33 books! It was more than wonderful to read this many books over my summer break, as I really missed reading during last spring semester. I’m back at school now for the fall semester, and between all of the required reading I have to do for class, other homework, activities, LIFE, I know I’m going to be reading less- my goal for September is to at least read 2 BOOKS GUYS!

If I had to summarize my summer reading is one genre it would hands-down be contemporary! Even though I did read some fantasy and sci-fi, I really must be a summertime= contemporary reader! Listed below are going to be my favorite reads of the summer, and I’ll leave links to reviews if I have them for the book!


Alex and Eliza by Melissa de la Cruz | review: here

Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia |review: here

Warcross by Marie Lu (ARC) | review to come

Made You Up by Francesca Zappia

Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han |review: here


The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord | mini review: here

The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath

Tash Hearts Tolstoy by Kathryn Ormsbee | review: here


Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng (ARC) | review to come

The Smell of Other People’s Houses by Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock | review: here

Words in Deep Blue by Cath Crowley | review: here

Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty | review: here

Honorable Mentions:

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon | review: here

Once and For All by Sarah Dessen

Juniper Lemon’s Happiness Index by Julie Israel | review: here

Genuine Fraud by E.Lockhart (ARC) | review to come

My Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella

What was your favorite read of the summer? Share in the comments!

Why You Need to be Reading Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

Big Little Lies has been on my TBR since its TV adaptation’s trailer came out earlier this year. I’ve been dying to watch the TV show, as its received tons of amazing reviews and sixteen Emmy nominations–even though I’ve never watched the Emmys but this might be the year between BLL and Master of None. However, not only due to the fact that I don’t have HBO (yes, that means I haven’t watched Game of Thrones either), but also that I am the type of reader that HAS to read the book before seeing the show or movie. As you can imagine, it’s been impossible to get a copy of BLL through my local library system because of how many people want to read it. But then came one magical Monday night.

As I was scrolling through my library’s online catalog, I saw that a copy of BLL was sitting on my local library’s shelf. I ran (okay, I drove) there and finally picked up the book and started reading it the next day. A bit of a sidenote, but it took me to actually hold this book in person to see that there was a broken lollipop on the cover. I was hooked on BLL throughout reading it, and I’m excited to talk about why you need to read BLL, especially if you’re nervous about all the hype Big_Little_Lies_Cover.jpg.

It takes place in Australia. I had no idea that BLL took place in Australia, as the HBO mini series takes place in the US. While the setting of Australia doesn’t play too much into the plot, it was cool to see how that affected the characters’ dialogue and a few cultural aspects. I will admit that most of the time BLL could have taken place anywhere, so I understand how the TV adaptation was able to change the setting easily.

There’s a big cast of characters AND IT WORKS. Each chapter alternates between the POVs of our three main characters, Madeleine, Celeste, and Jane. While having three POVs isn’t an earth-shattering feature, each of the women have their own “set” of characters and their stories interweave. There’s Madeline, the schoolyard queen bee, with her husband Ed, two daughters, Abigail and Chloe, and son, Fred, her ex-husband Nathan, and Nathan’s wife, Bonnie, who happens to have a daughter the same age as Chloe in the same school, same kindergarten class. There’s Celeste, known in Pirriwee for her beauty, her wealthier-than-you-could-ever-imagine husband, Perry, and twin boys, Max and Josh. There’s Jane, the newest mom in the neighbor, not to mention, the only single one, with her son Ziggy. Additionally, at the end of each chapter, we get tidbits from fellow parents and members of Pirriwee as they’re interviewed in an on-going police investigation.

It deals with some heavy topics, specifically violence and physical abuse. The book starts off with Mrs. Ponder watching some suspicious activity at Pirriwee Public’s trivia night and we learn that in that same chapter that there’s been a murder at the event. Each chapter from then on goes back six months in time and with each chapter, we get closer to the dreaded trivia night. Our “real” plot begins with a bullying situation between the kindergarteners, as Jane’s son, Ziggy, is accused of choking Renata’s daughter, leaving bruises on Amabella’s neck (this isn’t a typo, the girl’s name isn’t Annabella). As the story progresses, we learn that some of our main characters have dealt with physical abuse in their romantic relationships and we see it start to affect their everyday lives.

As mentioned, there’s a hit TV adaptation. Once I saw the trailer for BLL, I knew I wanted to watch it immediately. I think I would have changed my bookish ways for one exception if the TV series had been a bit more accessible. Reese Witherspoon and Adam Scott are two of my favorite actors, not to mention that the cast as a whole is an A+ crew. As I’m writing this post, I have just started watching the first episode, and so far I’m very impressed with how many of the lines from the show come straight from the book! I’m hoping to eventually get the season on DVD from my library, but like the book, it’s a long waitlist, so my iTunes gift cards may be getting a bit of use in the next few weeks.

Have you read Big Little Lies? Share in the comments!

Australia, Adult Books, & A Lot of Mysteries: What I Read in August 2017

August was an important reading month for me because I hit my reading goal of at least 58 books in 2017, meaning that I had read 200 books within three years. In August,over half of the books that I picked up were adult books, two took place in Australia (which was extremely cool because I rarely read books that take place there!), and a lot of the books that I read involved some sort of mystery (or mysteries in a few cases). I read 11 books in total, which I’m pretty happy about, considering that I’m back at school for the fall semester and I know that I won’t be reading as much as a did this summer (*major sigh). As always, if I have reviewed the book, I’m just going to include my star rating and a link to my review.


Genuine Fraud by E. Lockhart (ARC) | 4/5 Stars

Genuine Fraud left me thinking throughout and after this mystery thriller told in reverse-chronological order from E. Lockhart. I’ll have a review coming closer to release date.

 One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid |4.25/5 Starsonetrueloves

Review: Here

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng (ARC) | 5/5 Stars

I had been highlight anticipating Little Fires Everywhere since I read Celeste Ng’s Everything I Never Told You in 2016, and Little Fires Everywhere exceeded my expectations. It was definitely one of my favorite books of 2017, and I’ll have a review to coming closer to release date.

After I Do by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Review: Here

The Smell of Other People’s Houses by Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock | 5/5 Stars

Review: Here

The Thing with Feathers (ARC) by McCall Hoyle | 3.5/5 Stars

I was highly anticipating The Thing With Feathers, as our main character, Emilie, has epilepsy and must adjust from being homeschooled to attending public school. I have a review coming for The Things with Feathers next week!

FullSizeRenderWords in Deep Blue by Cath Crowley | 4.75/ 5 Stars

Review: Here

My Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella | 4/5 Stars

You could always use a Sophie Kinsella book in your life. Her books are light and funny, and My Not So Perfect Life is no exception. While a tad unrealistic at times, Katie felt really down to earth, and I loved how much glamping played into this book. I’m happy to say that the romance in this book doesn’t overtake the story, however, the story does drag at the end just to have a solution to Alex and Katie’s relationship.

Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty | 4/5 Stars

I’ve been so excited to finally start watching the Big Little Lies HBO mini-series, but being the reader that I am, I knew I had to read the book before starting the show. I’ll be uploading a post soon about my Big Little Lies excitement, but just know this book took me by surprise and I’m still obsessed. I’ve also started watching the TV show, which is another growing obsession.

Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari | 4/5 Stars

I’m super proud of myself for adding Modern Romance because I finally listened to my first audiobook! I’m going to have post all about it soon.

Passing by Nella Larsen | 3.5/5 Stars

I flew through Passing for my English class this week, and I really enjoyed this classic focused on race. I’m a bit disappointed that I had to rush through this one (super thankful though that my edition was only eighty-two pages long) in order to do my first class assignment, but I’m excited about discussing this book more in class.

Even though I didn’t count it as read, I did DNF Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco this month. I began reading Stalking Jack the Ripper at the end of the July and by the end of the first in week in August, I decided that the book was just not for me. I really wanted to like this one because so many blogs that I follow love it! In short, I had no interest in our main protagonist, I often lost track of characters, and while the book has an exciting mystery premise, I found the plot extremely slow moving. If you’re interested, I go more into my Stalking Jack the Ripper feels here.