My Favorite Book Pins & Collection

Every reader loves their bookish merch. One of the most popular bookish swag over the years has increasingly been book pins or book buttons. While I do love my pins, I don’t really go out of my way to collect them. I haven’t really purposely tried to collect or buy them. Much of my collection has come from Book Expo, Book Con, author signings, and a few other bookish events like B&N’s Teen Book Fest and Epic Reads Day. I have also collected a few pins more recently from pre-order campaigns.

Today I’ll be shortly discussing and sharing my favorite bookish pins as well as a glimpse at my collection. I’ve definitely thought about getting a banner for my pins, but I really like using my own BookBub lanyards from Book Expo and Book Con.

My Collection

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My Favorites 

Harry Potter 20 Years of Magic- 20 years of magic later and even I still love some good HP merch. I received this at Book Expo 2018.

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Stay Sweet (inspired by Stay Sweet by Siobhan Vivian)- This favorite is likely influenced by the fact that Stay Sweet is one of my all-time favorite books. I received this from the awesome preorder campaign, which also included a signed bookplate and a Meade Creamery T-shirt. But what else could be cuter than an ice cream pin? I’m always tempted to pin this on to my denim jacket or vest, but I live in fear that it will fall off.

Alex & Eliza (inspired by Alex and Eliza by Melissa de la Cruz)- I have a love-hate relationship with the Alex and Eliza series (loved Alex and Eliza, really disliked Love & War, and will likely read All for One because I am Hamilton trash). I coveted this Alex & Eliza pin for a while, purely out of my love for Hamilton. This pin was originally included in the preorder campaign for the first book, but I received it from Penguin at Book Con 2018.

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FALL 2019 PREVIEW: Anticipated Releases Tag

I recently saw Rebecca of bookishlyrebecca do the Anticipated Releases Tag. If you think I love talking about the books I’ve read, I may be even more in love with talking about all the books that are getting ready to grace our bookshelves! Fall 2019 is especially going to be a fantastic new release season. No worries, my library card and bookstore gift cards are ready. This tag was created by Ellyn of Allonsythornraxx. I’ve tried to base some of my answers on titles that I have not received early for review.

Most Anticipated Release of the Year

This will likely come as no surprise, being that this one as been on my Goodreads TBR 61aM-kW30cL._SX351_BO1,204,203,200_since November 2017 and I’ve probably talked about it here on the blog since. I am beyond excited for Rainbow Rowell and Faith Erin Hick’s Pumpkinheads! I’m always on the hunt for a great graphic novel and I’ve been really craving a contemporary-esque novel from Rainbow Rowell.

Book You’re Not Anticipating 

Many of you may throw all of your booknerd screams at me, but I don’t think I’ll be picking up Victoria Schwab’s Tunnel of Bones. While  City of Bones was a fun and adventurous middle grade, I wasn’t a super fan and don’t feel the need necessarily to read the sequel.

Most Underhyped Anticipated Release

Since I’m primarily part of the YA book blogging community, I just might not have seen a lot of hype for Elizabeth Ames’ The Other’s Gold, which falls into the adult book and literary fiction categories. I reviewed this August 2019 release back in June and I truly think a lot of YA fans looking for more intricate writing will enjoy this one. The Other’s Gold follows four best friends through their college years and early adulthood.

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Book You’ve Been Waiting on Forever

I don’t think February 2019 counts as forever, but I am so NOT ready for the final book in Neal Shusterman’s Arc of a Scythe series, The Toll.

Non Fall 2019 release-wise, I have a feeling I’ll be waiting on this one for a little forever longer because Sarah J. Maas’ The World of Throne of Glass still does not have an official release date. I’m so excited that this one isn’t just going to be a ToG encyclopedia, since we’ll be revisiting this world ten years after Kingdom of Ash’s ending. I’m hoping this one will come out in 2020, since House of Earth & Blood/Crescent City will be out in March and ACOTAR #4 will *fingers crossed* will be sticking to its 2020 release as well.

 Book You’re Anticipating Out Your Comfort Zone

I’m really looking forward to Renee Ahdieh’s The Beautiful, even though I haven’t read too many historical fantasies and books about vampires.

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HARD YA READ: Hope and Other Punch Lines Review

Summary (from the publisher):Abbi Hope Goldstein is like every other teenager, with a few smallish exceptions: her famous alter ego, Baby Hope, is the subject of internet memes, she has asthma, and sometimes people spontaneously burst into tears when they recognize her. Abbi has lived almost her entire life in the shadow of the terrorist attacks of September 11. On that fateful day, she was captured in what became an iconic photograph: in the picture, Abbi (aka “Baby Hope”) wears a birthday crown and grasps a red balloon; just behind her, the South Tower of the World Trade Center is collapsing.36584899._SY475_

Now, fifteen years later, Abbi is desperate for anonymity and decides to spend the summer before her seventeenth birthday incognito as a counselor at Knights Day Camp two towns away. She’s psyched for eight weeks in the company of four-year-olds, none of whom have ever heard of Baby Hope.

Too bad Noah Stern, whose own world was irrevocably shattered on that terrible day, has a similar summer plan. Noah believes his meeting Baby Hope is fate. Abbi is sure it’s a disaster. Soon, though, the two team up to ask difficult questions about the history behind the Baby Hope photo. But is either of them ready to hear the answers?

My Rating: 4/5 Stars

My Thoughts:

Let’s be honest, summer contemporaries are always on my TBR radar, no matter the time of year. Me being the reader and TBR planner that I am, I of course save most of them for the summer  including Julie Buxbaum’s Hope and Other Punch Lines. This was my first book by the author, sold on its summer camp premise.

While the book’s main characters Abbi and Noah are camp counselors, this book is more about 9/11 and the two’s relationship with the September 11, 2001 attacks. Known to the world as Baby Hope, Abbi was pictured in one of the most well-known 9/11 photographs. A budding comedian and journalist, Noah is hoping to do a newspaper article on the people in the Baby Hope photo, including figuring out one of their identities.

Julie Buxbaum writes in her author’s note that many of her young readers really only know about 9/11 rom their history classes. However, 9/11 is a much more familiar event for me personally. There is a 9/11 memorial in my town and college town. I live about ten minutes away from the town that lost the most amount of people outside of New York City, which Julie Buxbaum loosely based the fictional town of Oakdale from. One of my parents worked in the Towers and is a 9/11 survivor.

That being said, I have a weird relationship with fiction centered around 9/11. I knew Hope and Other Punch Lines had some sort of 9/11 element, but blame it on me for not reading the synopsis again before reading and realizing how much 9/11 is part of the story. To be honest, if I really realized how much this book is about 9/11 before then, I likely wouldn’t have picked it up.

As much as I do wish that we got a teeny bit more light-heartedness, aka Abbi and her co-counselor fawning over the hot camp lifeguard and burger dates with Noah, there is much heaviness within this story. Abbi is constantly getting recognized as Baby Hope and feels that she can never not live in the shadow of that day. She is also having some health problems that could be connected to 9/11 syndrome, which I had heard of and definitely learned more about as a result of this book.

Throughout, between Noah and Abbi’s personal connections and their interviews with survivors, Hope and Other Punch Lines provides a ton of great learning moments about 9/11, along with grief and loss. I think this book would be great for YA readers who may be part of the generation born after 9/11 and who have only learned about it as part of their history classes. I think I could have easily put this book down for the subject matter, however, I quickly fell into Julie Buxbaum’s storytelling and her character dynamics. From the main characters to their interviews with the survivors, this book felt pretty real in an all too-real situation.

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The Sunshine Blogger Award Part 3

The Sunshine Blogger Award is one of my favorite awards that floats around the book blogging-sphere. I was nominated and did the tag twice back in 2017, but recently Alexandra from Reading by Starlight nominated me for the award again! I really enjoy this award/tag because I love reading and answering the creative questions and answers everyone comes up with.

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It’s doomsday – what is the last book you want to read before the world ends?

Currently American Royals by Katharine McGee, because I’m so excited to read it.

Quick! I’m stuck in a slump! What’s your go-to recommendation?

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han, because contemporary books are typically faster to read than most genres. And once you meet the Song-Covey girls (and Peter K.) you’ll soon be moving on to books two and three.

What is your favorite setting to read about, be it realistic or fantasy?

Beach town and bakeries set in the summer are preferred.

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ARC AUGUST & MORE: August 2019 TBR

Since I read more in the summer than any other time in the year, I love creating TBRs during this season. Making my August TBR is especially exciting because I will be participating in ARC August for the second time! ARC August is hosted by Octavia and Shelley of Read.Sleep.Repeat. The purpose of this month-long reading challenge is to tackle as many ARCs or books for review as possible, since the fall is always packed with new releases. More information can be found at Read. Sleep. Repeat. but in short:

  • anyone (including non-bloggers) can participate
  • both released and unreleased, physical, audio, and e- ARCs count

My goal is to try to read as many of my Book Expo ARCs and books I’ve been sent for review as possible, since school starts up again at the end of this month, while also reading some more from the library & my bookshelves and leftovers from my July TBR. Like always, I’ll more than likely pick up a few more books than what’s planned below.

ARCs

American Royals by Katherine McGee- Does anyone else hold off on reading books because they’re just so excited to read them? This is the case for me with one of my most anticipated books of the year, American Royals! This book following the American royal family (imagine the US had a monarchy and not a democracy) has been receiving so much hype lately that I can’t hold off on reading it for much longer.

A Match Made in Mehendi by Nandini Bajpai- Matchmaking has become a rising and one of my favorite tropes in YA that I’m excited to dive back into with A Match Made in Mehendi. 

The Revolution of Birdie Randolph by Brandy Colbert- Brandy Colbert is another hyped author that I have not yet read. The Revolution of Birdie Randolph has been slated as one of the best books of the fall, so I’m extra excited to jump in.

The Library of Lost Things by Laura Taylor Namey- Mention a bookstore and I’m there. Mention a book about a character who works in a bookstore and I’ll be in a bookstore buying said book.

Throw Like a Girl by Sarah Henning- I love sports YA books—blame it on being obsessed with Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally back in my early YA days. I know people love Sarah Henning’s Sea Witch (also my physical TBR!) so I’m excited to see her contemporary take.

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READING BOOKS & BOOKS: July 2019 Wrap Up

One of the best parts of the summer is being able to read, swim, read, and tan. Did I mention reading outside in the summer is my favorite thing ever? My reading plans in July primarily focused on Book Expo ARCs and some necessary (summer) contemporaries. I actually read my three most anticipated books of the year this month, and I found myself craving more adult books and romance in July than usual! I definitely blame the latter for my love for the Off-Campus series by Elle Kennedy this year—I recently bought the first book in the spin-off series, The Chase.

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The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord (reread) | 4.5/5 Stars

I enjoyed The Start of Me and You even more the second time around! And like the first time around, I spent a lot of time reading it and floating around my pool.

The Map From Here to There by Emery Lord (ARC) | 4/5

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This was a solid sequel to The Start of Me and You, but I wasn’t as in love as I hoped I’d be.

Love and Other Words by Christina Lauren | 3.5/5

I liked how Love and Other Words flipped between the past and the present, but I feel like the book didn’t really bring anything I hadn’t seen before.

Unpregnant by Jenni Hendricks and Ted Caplan (ARC) | 5/5

If you thought that there could never be a thing called a ‘funny YA abortion story,’ think again and read Unpregnant when it comes out this fall.

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Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo (ARC) | 5/5

I just knew Ninth House was going to blow me away, and it probably sounds ridiculous saying it because what else would you expect, but I found my favorite book of the year.

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CONTEMPORARY, CONTEMPORARY: July 2019 Mini Reviews

Once again, my monthly mini reviews is filled with contemporary books! What else am I supposed to read in the summer?

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Open Road Summer by Emery Lord

downloadMy Rating: 4/5 Stars

Open Road Summer was the final published Emery Lord book I had left to read. I received the gorgeous UK edition of Emery Lord’s debut novel last summer, but decided to save it until this July because this fangirl loves having summer contemporaries saved for summer reading. Open Road Summer follows Reagan’s summer as she travels the US on tour with her country music star of a best friend, Dee. After a PR nightmare, Reagan’s plans of a summer with her best friend are soon interrupted by Matt Finch, Dee’s opening act.

Open Road Summer is a really solid summer contemporary about friendship and romance. Reagan and Matt’s relationship was sweet, but I was most invested in Dee and Reagan. It was really fun being on the road with Dee and Reagan and I loved getting to explore their friendship. No matter what, Dee and Reagan are there for each other through everything. I loved Dee and her family’s Southern charm and I wouldn’t mind some sort of spin off following her career and romance! On the other hand, while Reagan is a really complex and well developed character, I just couldn’t like her. Like a few other readers, I agree that her cattiness/ her girl-hate was way too melodramatic most of the time. While a lot of her remarks had to do with her feelings for her love interest, she sees a lot of girls as competitors and blatantly put a few of them down for not being as attractive as her or for not being ’Hollywood/celebrity’ attractive.

The Names They Gave Us remains my #1 Emery Lord book and I just love Max from The Start of Me and You way too much, but Open Road Summer definitely has a spot in my summer contemporary loving heart. Contemporary fans looking for books featuring friendship, road trips, and/or music will particularly enjoy this one.

Pretty Guilty Women by Gina LaManna 

My Rating: 5/5 Stars 

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Pretty Guilty Women is the perfect read for beach and binge reading. With comparisons to Big Little Lies, Pretty Guilty Women rewinds the events of a destination wedding week, as four women each confess to the same murder. The book flips between interviews with the case’s lead detective and the four women’s happenings throughout the week. Each women is dealing with some sort of issue, varying levels of seriousness. Lulu is afraid her fifth marriage won’t be her last, as her husband takes phone calls from someone named S while on vacation; Ginger is having trouble connecting with her fifteen year old daughter; while Kate seemingly has all the money in the world, there is one thing she can’t buy that is causing problems with her boyfriend; Emily finds herself unable to escape her past, including the relationship that has haunted her for over ten years and another that destroyed her friendship with Ginger.

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