Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Bought/Borrowed Because…

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Just as a reminder, here is how Top Ten Tuesday works!

Jana assigns each Tuesday a topic and then we all post our top ten list that fits that topic. Please link back to That Artsy Reader Girl in your own post so that others know where to find more information.

You’ll find the schedule of upcoming TTT topics here you can plan ahead.If you don’t have a blog, post your picks in the comment section below! Have tons of fun talking books and getting to know your fellow bloggers!

Hi y’all! It has been so long since I have done a Top Ten Tuesday. I don’t know why I stopped but I am glad to be back. This week the prompt is Books I bought/borrowed because (fill in the blank). I am going to fill mine in with because I liked the cover.

I have always been someone who is caught up in how the cover of a book looks. Often, if I don’t like the cover and I haven’t heard anyone talk about it, I won’t pick it up. So off we go, here are 10 books I bought/borrowed either slightly or completely because of their covers.

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Like I said not all of these were purely cover books but the cover had something to with each of them. Let me know what books you’ve ever read based on the cover!

Women's History Month Readathon wrap up

Hey y’all! So this month I took part in Women’s History Month Readathon and I wanted to share how I did and what I ended up reading for the challenge. I’m sure this post will be pretty similar to my March wrap up post so I’m sorry about that!

This readathon was hosted by Margaret over at weirdzeal so a BIG thank you to them for hosting this amazing readathon.

Here was the bingo board that was set up for us

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And here is my bingo board at the end of the month….

Here are the books I read and what challenges they marked off (We were allowed to use books for more than one)

Published before you were born: NA (I’ve mostly been reading new releases whoops)

Trans author: NA (This one makes me the saddest that I didn’t complete it.)

Girl or Woman in the title: NA

Less than 10k rating on Goodreads: Only Mostly Devastated

ARC that came out March 3rd 2020, had 688 rating when I started

WOC on the cover: NA. I did read a book with WOC MCs (When We Were Magic) but technically the girls on the cover are orange and therefore I cannot claim there are WOC on the cover.

Female Villain: The Wicked Deep

Two or more female authors: I hate everyone but you

Set over 100 years ago: The Wicked Deep

Retelling: Does Only Mostly Devastated count as a Grease retelling? haha

Has movie or TV adaptation: NA

Biography or memoir: Home Work

Pink Cover: I hate everyone but you

Set outside your home country: I mean TECHNICALLY Home Work by Julie Andrews and Lady in Waiting by Anne Glenconner are both set all over all world?

Debut: Tweet Cute

Indigenous author: NA. I got a book out for this one but didn’t get to it.

Reread of an old favorite: NA. I’ve been reading newer books and books I haven’t read before so I didn’t get to this one either.

I think I did sort of okay. There were 16 challenges and I finished 9 of them by reading 6 books. I wish I had done better but honestly by the end of March, I was just reading whatever I wanted.

March Wrap Up || Monthly Wrap Up

Hey y’all. So I know that March was really scary for a lot of us and it felt like a whole year in itself but I’m hoping April will be better for all of us.

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Click the photos to be taken to the Goodreads page

This month I read 10 books and I am in the middle of one more but will probably not finish before April.

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Arc from Netgalley

One Sentence Review: Interesting look at someone close to Princess Anne, sometimes a little slow.

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One Sentence Review: We could have had it all but was let down.

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One Sentence Review: I love her and I would do anything for her.

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One Sentence Review: It was pretty good.

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One Sentence Review: It was quirky, funny and super cheesy.

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One Sentence Review: I never know how to review or rate these but it was emotionally hard to get through.

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One Sentence Review: Lacked a little since it was just emails and texts but still good.

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One Sentence Review: I haven’t stopped thinking about this book since I read it.

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One Sentence Review: Different and not my favorite but bearable.

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One Sentence Review: First five star of the year!!!!!!!!

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This month I did more blog hopping than usual for me so I have a ton of links this month!

I DELETED ALL OF THE BOOKS ON MY GOODREADS TBR AND BOY DOES IT FEEL GOOD by Laura @ bbliophile

Women’s History Book Tag by Margaret @ Weirdzeal

Celebrating 2 Years of Blogging & Secret Life of a Book Blogger Tag by Kal @ readervoracious

10 GOOD (AND BAD) READING HABITS I HAVE by Marie @ drizzleandhurricanebooks

The Pros and (mainly) Cons of being a Mood Reader by Emme @ aliterarylatte

6 Tools That Help Me Organize My Blog by Zenobia @ thatzenblog

A Comprehensive Guide to Confusing Terms || Ft. Quotes By Eminent Personalities by Pavani @ thevoraciousbibliophile

20 YA BOOKS RELEASING IN MARCH, APRIL, MAY 2020 TO ADD TO YOUR TBRS by Marie @ drizzleandhurricanebooks

If You Loved, then Try. . . book recommendations by May @ my1stchapter

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This month I have really been into…..

TV/Movies

Great British Baking Show/ Great British Baking Show: The Beginnings: Same as last month, I often watch this when I am stressed. I find it is good to both watch and nap to.

Buzzfeed Unsolved: True Crime is back and I’m loving every minute.

Triple D: My wife loves this show, I tolerate it for her.

Video Games!

I started playing Sims 4 again and bought Island Life and University to keep me busy when I am not reading or at work.

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At the very start of March, on March 4th I traveled into Baltimore and after 8 years of longing, finally saw Wicked the Musical. It was absolutely magical and honestly feels like a dream or something that happened years ago and not just 4 weeks ago. Thank you to the Wicked Touring Cast for bringing this story to life and basically to my doorstep. I was going to try to see them again in June in VA but I doubt that will happen now and it makes me want to scream.

So this part is going to be mostly about Corona or Corona affected things. If you are stressed or anything, don’t feel obligated to read this.

The biggest change is our lives in March was out restaurant going from Dine-In to basically a Drive-Thru in our parking lot. We are all working very hard to keep things as normal as possible but it is obviously a huge change. This also included cut hours for both of us so we have filed for unemployment during this time. We are staying home as much as we can and following the rules/laws our governor has put in place for Maryland.

I am a little stressed because my best friend has cystic fibrosis and I am so scared of losing her to this. Please stay in as much as you can guys. I know a lot of us still have to work (my wife and I included) but please. Do your best.

Luckily for us nobody in our families or any of our friends are showing signs of being sick and I can only hope it remains that way for us and that everyone who is currently sick or has a family member sick is doing as best they can. I love all of you and my DM’s are always open.

I’ve joined a few new group chats and I am planning on starting a youtube channel for booktube and vlogging with the same username as here.

I hope you all had the best March you could and are staying safe. See ya later!

Home Work || Book Review

Hey Y’all! I recently read Home Work by Julie Andrews so I thought I would take the time to share my thoughts on this beautiful memoir.

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Author: Julie Andrews Edwards

Publisher:  Hachette Books

Published on: October 15th 2019

Number of Pages: 560 pages/ 320 pages (hardcover VS kindle)

Bought, Borrowed or ARC: Borrowed from Libby

Where can you get it?

Again, I make no money off of these links. These are simply for your convenience.

Amazon: $17.99

Barnes and Noble: $27.00

Books-A-Million: $26.40

Book Depository: $25.99

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In Home, the number one New York Times international bestseller, Julie Andrews recounted her difficult childhood and her emergence as an acclaimed singer and performer on the stage.
With this second memoir, Home Work: A Memoir of My Hollywood Years, Andrews picks up the story with her arrival in Hollywood and her phenomenal rise to fame in her earliest films–Mary Poppins and The Sound of Music. Andrews describes her years in the film industry — from the incredible highs to the challenging lows. Not only does she discuss her work in now-classic films and her collaborations with giants of cinema and television, she also unveils her personal story of adjusting to a new and often daunting world, dealing with the demands of unimaginable success, being a new mother, the end of her first marriage, embracing two stepchildren, adopting two more children, and falling in love with the brilliant and mercurial Blake Edwards. The pair worked together in numerous films, including Victor/Victoria, the gender-bending comedy that garnered multiple Oscar nominations.

Cowritten with her daughter, Emma Walton Hamilton, and told with Andrews’s trademark charm and candor, Home Work takes us on a rare and intimate journey into an extraordinary life that is funny, heartrending, and inspiring.

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One of my all time favorite movies is Princess Diaries which of course, stars Julie Andrews. I had heard about her second memoir for a few months and put it on hold through Libby. I had almost completely forgot about it when it showed up as available. I immediately put aside all of the other books I was reading and started reading this one.

Most of the time with non-fiction or memoirs, at some point I hit a wall. I get bored. I drag my feet and whine about finishing and either toss it aside or spend the next two weeks slowly chipping away at it while losing my mind.

That didn’t happen with Home Work. In one sitting I went from 3% to 43% and I could barely believe it. It felt like I had barely been reading at all. One of the few things I knew about Julie Andrews was that she likes PG tips tea (which I learned off the commentary of Princess Diaries) so it was so nice to learn more about her. For instance, I didn’t know she had more than one child or that she lived in Switzerland. I loved hearing little stories from Mary Poppins and Sound of Music (also big favorites of mine).

I really enjoyed this memoir with it’s pacing and I hope that Julie writes another one. Maybe this time reaching Princess Diaries? Please? Maybe one just on her experience with Princess Diaries… jk jk unless….

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Have you read Home Work? What did you think? What is your favorite Julie Andrews movie?

I Love Spring || Book Tag

spring book tag

I don’t know about y’all but Spring is one of my favorite seasons. I love the warmth coming back and all of the flowers growing. It just feels so special. That’s why I decided to do this tag.

1) How is Spring where you live?

I live in Maryland so Spring can be one of those sometimes it is warm (the other day it was 81) or it can be a little chilly (yesterday was in the 40s).

2) Most anticipated book release this Spring?

I want to read so many books coming out that I can’t pick just one.

3) Show us a book cover that makes you think of Spring:

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4) Where are you going to read this Spring?

Probably outside at our table or inside on my bed with the window open.

5) Find a cover with the sun on it!

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6) What are your favorite Spring reads?

I don’t really seasonal read so I don’t have a good answer for this one haha.

7) Find a book with many different colors on it?

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I definitely thought this had more questions so it feels weird to be ending this here but so it is. I hope everyone is still all right. Love ya.

Down the TBR || Part 17

Hey Y’all. In the spirit of trying to keep things as normal as possible, I am still doing Down The TBR every other Saturday. We will see if I do things on the Saturday’s in between while I have extra time but I am still working as much as possible so it’s just a guessing game.

If you are still out there working, whether you are a restaurant worker (like me), a retail employee, a teacher doing work from home or a doctor/nurse. Thank you. Thank you for what you are doing for all of us. I know it’s hard but I am SO proud of all of us.

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Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf.

Order on ascending date added.

Take the first 5 (or 10 (or even more!) if you’re feeling adventurous) books. Of course, if you do this weekly, you start where you left off the last time

Read the synopses of the books

Decide: keep it or should it go?

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Fate and fortune. Power and passion. What does it take to be the queen of a kingdom when you’re only seventeen?

Maya is cursed. With a horoscope that promises a marriage of death and destruction, she has earned only the scorn and fear of her father’s kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her whole world is torn apart when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. Soon Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Neither roles are what she expected: As Akaran’s queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar’s wife, she finds something else entirely: Compassion. Protection. Desire…

But Akaran has its own secrets—thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Soon, Maya suspects her life is in danger. Yet who, besides her husband, can she trust? With the fate of the human and Otherworldly realms hanging in the balance, Maya must unravel an ancient mystery that spans reincarnated lives to save those she loves the most…including herself.

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Lydia is dead. But they don’t know this yet.

So begins this exquisite novel about a Chinese American family living in 1970s small-town Ohio. Lydia is the favorite child of Marilyn and James Lee, and her parents are determined that she will fulfill the dreams they were unable to pursue. But when Lydia’s body is found in the local lake, the delicate balancing act that has been keeping the Lee family together is destroyed, tumbling them into chaos.

A profoundly moving story of family, secrets, and longing, Everything I Never Told You is both a gripping page-turner and a sensitive family portrait, uncovering the ways in which mothers and daughters, fathers and sons, and husbands and wives struggle, all their lives, to understand one another.

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Ten years ago, Peter Pan left Neverland to grow up, leaving behind his adolescent dreams of boyhood and resigning himself to life as Wendy Darling. Growing up, however, has only made him realize how inescapable his identity as a man is.

But when he returns to Neverland, everything has changed: the Lost Boys have become men, and the war games they once played are now real and deadly. Even more shocking is the attraction Peter never knew he could feel for his old rival, Captain Hook—and the realization that he no longer knows which of them is the real villain. 

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This is a love story. It’s the story of a second-hand bookshop called Howling Books where people leave letters to strangers, or those they love, or want to love, between the pages of books in the Letter Library.

Henry Jones and Rachel Sweetie are best friends. Or they were. Before Rachel moved away to the sea. Now, she’s back, grieving for her brother Cal who drowned in the sea that he loved.

Rachel loves Henry. Henry loves Amy. Amy loves Amy but is happy for Henry to love her too.

This is a book about books. About the power of literature to cradle our past, present and future selves. It’s about how we leave ourselves behind when we die. How we leave our histories in the things we love – like books.

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MOST OF MY friends now go to Pius Senior College, but my mother wouldn’t allow it because she says the girls there leave with limited options and she didn’t bring me up to have limitations placed upon me. If you know my mother, you’ll sense there’s an irony there, based on the fact that she is the Queen of the Limitation Placers in my life.

Francesca battles her mother, Mia, constantly over what’s best for her. All Francesca wants is her old friends and her old school, but instead Mia sends her to St. Sebastian’s, an all-boys’ school that has just opened its doors to girls. Now Francesca’s surrounded by hundreds of boys, with only a few other girls for company. All of them weirdos or worse.

Then one day, Mia is too depressed to get out of bed. One day turns into months, and as her family begins to fall apart, Francesca realises that without her mother’s high spirits, she hardly knows who she is. But she doesn’t yet realise that she’s more like Mia than she thinks. With a little unlikely help from St. Sebastian’s, she just might be able to save her family, her friends, and especially herself.

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Betrothed since childhood to the prince of Mynaria, Princess Dennaleia has always known what her future holds. Her marriage will seal the alliance between Mynaria and her homeland, protecting her people from other hostile lands. But Denna has a secret. She possesses an Affinity for fire—a dangerous gift for the future queen of a kingdom where magic is forbidden.

Now, Denna must learn the ways of her new home while trying to hide her growing magic. To make matters worse, she must learn to ride Mynaria’s formidable warhorses—and her teacher is the person who intimidates her most, the prickly and unconventional Princess Amaranthine—called Mare—the sister of her betrothed.

When a shocking assassination leaves the kingdom reeling, Mare and Denna reluctantly join forces to search for the culprit. As the two become closer, Mare is surprised by Denna’s intelligence and bravery, while Denna is drawn to Mare’s independent streak. And soon their friendship is threatening to blossom into something more.

But with dangerous conflict brewing that makes the alliance more important than ever, acting on their feelings could be deadly. Forced to choose between their duty and their hearts, Mare and Denna must find a way to save their kingdoms—and each other.

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All the creatures of the forest and field and riverbank knew the infant was special. She was the princess, spirited away from the evil fairy Pernicia on her name-day. But the curse was cast: Rosie was fated to prick her finger on the spindle of a spinning wheel and fall into a poisoned sleep-a slumber from which no one would be able to rouse her.

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Princess Valentina lives a reasonably comfortable life, but after her mother’s death, her father gets tired of taking care of her and locks her in a tower. She spends years on her own, talking to the birds on her windowsill, and reading books with adventures she will never experience. Her plans of running away are usually left for another day because she knows the vast forest surrounding her tower is too dangerous to cross alone.
Until one day, another girl passes by on her horse and Valentina wonders if she’s finally brave enough to seize her chance of freedom.

Ripped Pages is a Rapunzel F/F retelling in the format of a novelette.

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Ryann Bird dreams of traveling across the stars. But a career in space isn’t an option for a girl who lives in a trailer park on the wrong side of town. So Ryann becomes her circumstances and settles for acting out and skipping school to hang out with her delinquent friends.

One day she meets Alexandria: a furious loner who spurns Ryann’s offer of friendship. After a horrific accident leaves Alexandria with a broken arm, the two misfits are brought together despite themselves—and Ryann learns her secret: Alexandria’s mother is an astronaut who volunteered for a one-way trip to the edge of the solar system.

Every night without fail, Alexandria waits to catch radio signals from her mother. And its up to Ryann to lift her onto the roof day after day until the silence between them grows into friendship, and eventually something more . . .

In K. Ancrum’s signature poetic style, this slow-burn romance will have you savoring every page.

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For as long as she can remember, Gwendolyn Allister has never had a place to call home—all because her mother believes that monsters are hunting them. Now these delusions have brought them to London, far from the life Gwen had finally started to build for herself. The only saving grace is her best friend, Olivia, who’s coming with them for the summer.

But when Gwen and Olivia are kidnapped by shadowy creatures and taken to a world of flesh-eating sea hags and dangerous Fey, Gwen realizes her mom might have been sane all along.

The world Gwen finds herself in is called Neverland, yet it’s nothing like the stories. Here, good and evil lose their meaning and memories slip like water through her fingers. As Gwen struggles to remember where she came from and find a way home, she must choose between trusting the charming fairy-tale hero who says all the right things and the roguish young pirate who promises to keep her safe.

With time running out and her enemies closing in, Gwen is forced to face the truths she’s been hiding from all along. But will she be able to save Neverland without losing herself?

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This week I kept 7 and got rid of 3. Not my best but I am really interested in a lot these books and they are also shorter so would be easier to get through.

Have you read any of these books? What did you think? Let me know!

The Wicked Deep || Book Review

Hey Y’all. I know this is a really time for all of us. Personally, my wife and I are facing cut hours at work which means less money. I am trying to find the positives in this time and I am hoping to use my extra time to do more here. If you ever need to talk, you can always reach out to me on twitter (bookswithdana). I love you and stay safe.

So last week I read The Wicked Deep and SPOILER: I loved it so I wanted to share my thoughts with you all!

Warning spoilers ahead!

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Author: Shea Ernshaw 

Publisher:  Simon Pulse

Published on: March 6th 2018

Number of Pages: 310

Bought, Borrowed or ARC: Bought from BAM

Where can you get it?

Again, I make no money off of these links. These are simply for your convenience.

Amazon: $7.99

Barnes and Noble: $10.79

Books-A-Million: $11.99

Book Depository: $8.55

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Welcome to the cursed town of Sparrow…

Where, two centuries ago, three sisters were sentenced to death for witchery. Stones were tied to their ankles and they were drowned in the deep waters surrounding the town.

Now, for a brief time each summer, the sisters return, stealing the bodies of three weak-hearted girls so that they may seek their revenge, luring boys into the harbor and pulling them under.

Like many locals, seventeen-year-old Penny Talbot has accepted the fate of the town. But this year, on the eve of the sisters’ return, a boy named Bo Carter arrives; unaware of the danger he has just stumbled into.

Mistrust and lies spread quickly through the salty, rain-soaked streets. The townspeople turn against one another. Penny and Bo suspect each other of hiding secrets. And death comes swiftly to those who cannot resist the call of the sisters.

But only Penny sees what others cannot. And she will be forced to choose: save Bo, or save herself.

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I bought The Wicked Deep on a whim a couple months ago. At first it just rode around in the backseat of my car, then it was packed for our trip down south in November. Then it flew out to Las Vegas with me in January and when we got back it sat on my shelf for another two months still unread. I wasn’t intentionally putting it off for any reason but it just happened that way.

I finally picked up this book on March 2nd and I was done by bed the next night. There was so much I loved about this book. I loved the vibes it gave of a spooky haunted town and how everyone was just kinda like yeah this totally normal that at least 3 boys die every year, nothing we can do it about. I did guess that Penny could tell who was stolen because she was also stolen but I thought that was so cool. The story behind why the girls were drowned and why they haunted the town was so sad and heartbreaking but I’m glad that one of the girls began to realize that what they were doing was wrong. I don’t want to give away the ending because it is definitely something I think you should read for yourself but I did not see it coming at all.

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Thanks for reading y’all. Let me know if you plan to check it out and/or if you just want to talk. Like I said, you can find me on twitter at bookswithdana. I could definitely use the distraction and some “company”!