#WeekendReads & Emojiathon Weekly Wrap-Up #2

Half of the month has already passed; I know I’m starting to sound like a broken record, but how fast time flies! 

Every Friday, under this hashtag I keep you updated on my weekly reading progress and share with you the books that I’ll be reading over the weekend.

Without further ado, let’s start with my Emojiathon weekly wrap-up.
Since last update, I read:

I got to tick off 3 books on my Emojiathon TBR this week and with two weeks left, I have another 3 to go. It’s been coming along pretty nicely and I’m kind of proud of myself.

This week’s highlight is definitely The Nightwalker, a disorienting yet engaging psychological thriller. The creepy vibe kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time and I really enjoyed this. This one takes the cake.  You can read my thoughts on this book here.

Paige’s Turn was a cute quick read which I think will make a perfect summer read. There’s nothing special that makes this book stand out, the plot and the romance between the two main characters are pretty predictable but it is just so darn cute. If you’re a sucker for romance books or love stories (like me), this is for you.

Out of the three books that I finished this week, My Sweet Revenge ended up the least impressive. I did enjoy reading it, but it pales in comparison with the other two books.
You can read my thoughts on this one here.

 

As for my weekend reads, I’ll be most likely to keep working on the non-fiction book that I got from the editor for a review.
It’s been 5 days since I started reading this book but I haven’t made much progress with this one. I’ve just started the second chapter and I’m literally reading this at a snail’s pace. Reading 20 pages a day feels like such an achievement for me. It’s really dense and the diction employed in this book is super sophisticated; it’s far cry from the books I’d normally pick up.

Slogging on

Since this book is jam-packed with various kinds of information and my memory retention is getting weaker by the minute, I started to take notes and scribble my thoughts in a word document as I read along.  It is time-consuming, but I figured it would be better if I did this so as not to leave anything out. I don’t know if it’ll work, but I’m enjoying the process so far.

That being said, as I mentioned in my last update, non-fiction is basically not my cup of tea; I think I’ll go nuts if I keep focusing on this book the entire weekend, so I think I’ll pick up The Keeper of Lost Things by Ruth Hogan.

The keeper of lost things

This wasn’t on my Emojiathon TBR, but when I picked up Luck, Love & Lemon Pie (Amy E. Reichert) for my next challenge, which is to read a book I bought because of its cover, I was a bit put off by the synopsis.  I don’t gamble nor do I know anything about poker, so I wasn’t sure if I’d get attached to the story and I decided to swap it for The Keeper of Lost Things. This is my TBR so I can bend the rules, can’t I? 😛

Anyways, this will be my fifth challenge on my Emojiathon and hopefully I get to complete this during this weekend!

 

What are you going to read during this weekend?
If you are participating in the Emojiathon, how are your challenges coming along?
Let me know in the comments and I’ll talk to you again soon 🙂

Happy reading!

#WeekendReads & Emojiathon Weekly Wrap-Up

This week has passed so quickly; it’s already Friday (here in Japan)!
Like I always do, let me reflect back on my reading progress that I made so far and share the books that I’m going to be reading this weekend 🙂

First, the Emojiathon. Out of 7 books on my Emojiathon TBR, I read The Handmaid’s Tale and am working on My Sweet Revenge at the moment.

(You can read my thoughts on The Handmaid’s Tale here.)

As I was reading some books which were not on my TBR and got completely wrapped up in reading them, I haven’t made much headway in my actual Emojiathon TBR which I find a bit disappointing 😦
I’m currently on page 128 in My Sweet Revenge and I hope that I get to finish this by Sunday.  A girl can dream, right?

My usual self would normally pick up another book from the TBR, but there’s one thing that makes me hold off on doing so.

I’ll come straight to the point – I got a book sent by an editor for an entertainment magazine for a review; she asked me if I’d be willing to write a book review.

Surprise, surprise, isn’t it?

I was a bit concerned if I’d be interested in the book – a biography – which is not a type of book I’d normally pick up.
I don’t know what it is about non-fiction in general that puts me off, but I just don’t get tempted to pick it up.
For that reason, when she first contacted me through my Facebook friend, I was a bit hesitant but agreed to at least take a look at the book. Jumping the gun will never be a good thing, I figured.

I received the book last night and skimmed through the first few pages.
And who’d have thought? I found myself engrossed in the book; I was literally voraciously devouring every single sentence on those pages. Then I thought:

I might be able to pull this off, I might as well give this a try.

Long story short, I sent the editor a message that I’d like to discuss the timeline and the details about the review. I haven’t got the reply yet, but I think I’ll have one soon.

To be perfectly honest, I’m not even 100% sure if I can do this; I’m not and I have never been confident in myself.  Not having done anything like this, I’m kind of scared of failing to live up to her expectations.

That said, I do believe there’s a grain of truth in the adage, ‘everything happens for a reason,’ I’ve decided to at least give this a try. Sometimes you just need to push your limits and see what lies ahead of you. And I thought this is the time for me to do exactly that. Besides, we have yet to discuss the details yet! It’s too early to brush it off, isn’t it? 😀

Anyways, I’ll see how it goes and just do the best I can.

If the reply doesn’t come by tomorrow, I’m going to pick up the Nightwalker for a thriller fix.

The Nightwalker

Contemporary novels and YA books are so much fun to read, but you just need some engrossing spine-chilling thriller for a change and I’m definitely in the mood for that.

 

That’s it for this week.
If you are participating in the Emojiathon, I’d love to know how you are getting along with your TBR. Please comment below whatever you want to say, I’d love LOVE to hear your thoughts! 🙂

Thank you for reading (as always) and I’ll talk to you guys again soon!
Have a great weekend!

#WeekendReads : June 2nd, 2017

Can’t believe it’s already Friday here in Japan – This week just flew by!
Which means it’s time for another weekly updates; let me share with you the books I’ll be reading over the weekend.

  • The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
  • All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
  • Killer Cupcakes by Leighann Dobbs

As I mentioned in my previous post, I started reading The Handmaid’s Tale as part of my very first Readathon challenges and I’m on page 60 now.  I’m not far into the book, I’ve only just started, BUT I find Atwood’s writing very distinct, possessing a very unique rhythm with all the short sentences and punctuation or things like that. I don’t know how quickly I can get through this book, but I’m pumped to see how the story unfolds.

Along with The Handmaid’s Tale, I’m currently reading All the Bright Places. I finally picked up this book; this book, particularly this cover had always spoken to me but it took me a while to actually sit down and start reading. I’m currently on page 43 and liking it so far; the story kicks off in a pretty brisk, nice way and I like the two main characters struggling with their own issues. I can’t wait to see if this book will live up to the hype 🙂

Lastly – this was totally unexpected – but I picked up a cozy mystery, Killer Cupcakes. I was bored to death at the doctor’s waiting room, I just needed something to kill my time, something short and light to blast through. I’ve read this book before so I knew the plot, but I figured it might be nice to reread it so that I’d get to post my thoughts on this blog. This is a very quick read with a decent writing. I read 24% (or somewhere in the neighborhood) in just 15 minutes. Hopefully I can finish this book during this weekend.

 

All right, these are the books I’m working on right now. I’ll definitely keep you posted on my progress in my upcoming posts.
Thank you for reading and hope you have a wonderful weekend! 😀

#Reading Challenge: Emojiathon

So, we’ve finally hit the halfway mark of the year – it’s June already!
Although I’m not generally a TBR kind of reader, but I’ve always been interested in such reading challenges. Inspired by JessicaMarie493 post, I’ve decided to give Emojiathon a try this June 🙂

Emojiathon is created and hosted by  Dylanthereader5, Naya and Sarah and it goes on until the end of the month. You can take a look at the whole list of challenges for this Emojiathon here.

Here are the challenges that I picked up for my June Emojiathon:

HeartRead a romance or contemporary

For this challenge, I picked up My Sweet Revenge by Jane Fallon. To be honest, I personally think this challenge could also be applied to Luck, Love & Lemon Pie by Amy E. Reichert, which seems to be about a crumbling marriage, I’m going to go for My Sweet Revenge on this one.

smile  Read a book you bought because of it’s cover

This is where Luck, Love & Lemon Pie comes into play. I got this book last November solely for this pretty, tantalizing cover but this has been sitting on my shelf since then. I decided to take this opportunity to actually pick it up and read it.

freebie Freebie! Read any book

For this challenge, I picked up Paige’s Turn by Jennifer Peel. It seems to have gleaned pretty high reviews PLUS the cover looks gorgeous and summery. A reviewer on Goodreads says this book often pops up as a Kindle freebie, but it’s not necessarily the case that a freebie on Amazon.com is also a freebie on Japan Amazon, so I got lucky and I snatched it right up!

horror Read a thriller or horror

I picked up The Nightwalker by Sebastian Fitzek for this one. The plot of a young man who suffers from insomnia turning violent during his nocturnal excursions sounds so intriguing. This is also a book that has been sleeping on my shelf for quite some time, so I see this Emojiathon as an opportunity to pick this up this time around.

eyes  Read a book you’ve been seeing everywhere

For this challenge, I picked up The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood. Ever since the adaptation became available on Hulu, I have seen this title almost everywhere; on Twitter, On Google and not to mention in this book community.
I know I’m rather late to this The Handmaid’s Tale party, but hey, better late than never, right?

baby  Read a 2016/2017 release

This Emojiathon came at the perfect time – I downloaded When Dimple Met Rishi just yesterday! This book had been on my radar since late March or sometime and I really, really wanted to read this. I really love the cover by the way 🙂

News Read a book about a current event

If I managed to get all the other challengers out of the way, I’m going to read The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas.
Now, I’ve had this book on my shelf for 3 months, this book was actually my most anticipated release in 2017 and I even pre-ordered it at the end of last year, but I haven’t gotten around to reading it; something akin to intimidation made me have cold feet and push it down to the bottom on my TBR.
In order to right this situation, I’ve decided to include this book in my Emojiathon challenge. We’ll see how it goes!

There you have it; these are my challenges for my very first Emojiathon. I don’t know how many challenges that I’ll get to tick off, but I’m super excited!

Let me show you how determined and pumped up I am for this Readathon;

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See? I actually took all the physical books for this Readathon out of my bookshelf and plopped them up on my couch 🙂

Being a mood reader, I tend to flip-flop my mind and pick my next read randomly despite having made a TBR. So as not to repeat the same mistake, I decided to make the pile visible as a reminder; This pile will stay on my couch throughout this readathon.
Also, I can easily keep track of my progress this way 🙂

Participating in this readathon definitely motivated me to read some books that I probably wouldn’t pick up otherwise. This will hold me accountable and I’m glad that I decided to tackle these challenges for that.

Are you participating in this Emojiathon? If so, what are your picks for these challenges?
Definitely let me know in the comments and I’ll talk to you again soon! XD

May Wrap-Up

May is almost over – it’s May 31st, how time flies! It feels like I blasted through this month, but I’m pretty happy with the number of books that I read this month.

Without further ado, let’s take a look at the books that I read in May.
In no particular order:

  • So B. It by Sarah Weeks
  • The Quaker Cafe by Brenda Bevan Remmes
  • Everything I never Told You by Celeste Ng
  • Wonder by R.J. Palacio
  • The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
  • Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell
  • The Comforters by Muriel Spark
  • The Jane Austen Book Club by Karen Joy Fowler

All told, I read 8 books in May. Some of the books are slim and easy to get through (like middle grade books), granted, but I could at least bring back the book count from the plunging seven to eight. Considering I was almost 100 pages into Cloudstreet by Tim Winton before I gave up, which means I had been reading it for about 4 to 5 days, I think this book count looks pretty satisfactory and I’m sort of proud of myself.

Favorites:

  1. The Book Thief 
  2. Wonder
  3. Everything I Never Told You

The Book Thief was hands down the best book that I read this month. It’s simply a wondrously beautiful, poignant book. It’s no doubt a masterpiece. It left a huge impact on me.
Everything I Never Told was also a stunning debut novel from Celeste Ng. It’s a complex yet beautiful, heart-breaking story. It still kind of haunts me to be honest.

The Least Favorite

  1. The Jane Austen Book Club

It really pains me to put it like this, but it was really a disappointment for me.
That was the book I had been meaning to read for the longest time so when it became apparent to me that I might not like this book as much as I had thought, the reading experience rapidly turned into a laborious one 😦
I wanted to read more of the book club activities and discussions rather than background stories of the book club members. (rant-alert!)  It would have been a lot more engaging and intriguing to get through that way.

 

Apart from those I mentioned above, I also enjoyed reading So B. It and The Comforters.
The former is a really good middle grade coming-of-age story and the latter is a rather peculiar, intriguing book. The story seems a bit disjointed and disorienting at a glance; it makes you wonder where the story is heading to, but pretty much everything comes together nicely in the end. I particularly fell in love its somewhat cynical, sinister undertone. This book actually made me get another Muriel Spark book and I can’t wait to read it.


Although I’m still working my way through All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr, it looks next to impossible for me to finish the remaining 150 pages today, so I decided to do a wrap-up today.

 

That’s it, guys. Those are the books and my brief reflection on my May reads.
How about you? Did you have a good reading month?
Let me know in the comments below, I can’t wait to read your answers!

Thank you for reading as always, I’ll talk to you all again soon! 😀

 

#WeekendReads: May 26th, 2017

Hello, everybody! I hope you’re all having a great reading week.
It’s time for another #Weekend Reads post and I’m going to share with you the books I’ll be reading this weekend.

If you’ve been following me on Goodreads, you might know that I had been reading Cloudstreet: A Novel ( Tim Winton) and just picked up Tenth of December: Stories (George Saunders) yesterday. I thought I had been enjoying both of them, but yesterday, something just snapped;  my brain just stopped functioning.

I guess I can put it down to me having been busy in the last couple of weeks; I put in many hours of overtime, I often found myself dozing off with a book in my hands.
In addition to the looming due date of our financial statement, there have also been a lot of things/demands that I needed to handle, they might have just mentally drained me.

Then I crashed. 

I was like, ‘OMG, nothing comes into me, I can’t, I just can’t process these books.’

To be honest with you, Cloudstreet had been a tough read for me. Like I said, I had been enjoying it, the story of two dysfunctional families seemed and was actually interesting to read.
However, the biggest issue that I had was ‘diction/dialect’ in the book.
I’m not sure if that was because of Tim Winton being an Australian author or the lack of my English skills (duh), but it had been an awfully slow read. I could only read 20 pages per hour at best.

My brain fatigue might have come to a head at that point; I just wanted to read something I could process without using any brain power. I was by no means in the mood for another tough novel.

So I put those book back in my bookshelf and picked up All the Light We Cannot See: A Novel by Anthony Doerr. I needed something emotionally gripping and compelling enough to get me completely hooked.

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And it turned out right!
I was swept up in the emotions right off the bat and I’ve already read about a hundred pages. I’m absolutely loving this so far! I just don’t want to stop reading.

What I’m particularly enjoying to get through is the bond between Papa and Marie. Ah, it’s sooooo beautiful. It’s just hitting all the right notes for me. I JUST ADORE THEM!

Surprisingly, this book turned out to be such a page-turner and a quick read (compared to Cloudstreet :p).  I don’t have any socializing coming up this weekend, so I hope I can make headway in this book.

Another book I’m currently reading (technically, I’ve just started reading this morning) is Wonder by R.J. Palacio.

Wonder

Again, I just needed some quick, emotional reads in which I can immerse myself AND I must admit the retweet from my friend tempted me to pick up this one. It put me in the mood for a nice middle grade read.

This is actually a reread for me; I read this book in the summer of 2014 or sometime and I remember enjoying it so much. I was reading this on the airplane sandwiched by two men in business suits, and then there came the most emotional scene at the end of the book where August performs in a school play or something or it could be a commencement ceremony? (I no longer quite remember.)  Anyways, the entire time that I was reading that sequence, I kept telling myself, ‘don’t cry, don’t cry! I can’t let them see me crying over a book!’  I didn’t expect the book to be so emotional and moving; it was so hard to keep myself from shedding tears and sniffing lol

I was pretty positive that I’d enjoy this reread as much as I did the last time. I knew I would blast through this one, so this one made the list. I’m 10% into the book right now and am quite enjoying it 🙂

If I get to finish either of these two books, I think I’ll pick up Five Go Glamping: An adventure in the countryside for grown ups by Liz Tipping that I just got from Amazon.jp yesterday.

Five go Glamping

Doesn’t the cover look cute? I found this book on my trusty Bookbub feed and I immediately snatched it. There’s a lot of reviews that say this is not your typical Glamping story, it’s more like a romance story, but why not?  It’s such a slim novel with around 176 page count, and I am in the mood for a Summery read right now.
I NEED SOMETHING LIGHT AND FLUFFY for a change!

That’s it, guys. Those are the books that I’m currently reading and plan to read this weekend. Hopefully, I can finish at least two of them, but we’ll see 🙂

What are you reading right now?
Let me know in the comments and I’ll talk to you guys again soon.
Happy reading! XD

Bookshelf Tour! (Mostly Unread Books)

What’s up world!
Today, I’m going to be giving you a snippet of what my bookshelves look like!

First up, this is the overview of my bookshelves ↓

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I used to organize my bookshelves by genres, but I was kind of stressed out by how rapidly the shelf on which I put my romance books had been filling up. With three more women’s novels (most likely even more) coming my way, I didn’t know what to do.

Then, watching a BookTuber’s Bookshelf Tour video gave me the inspiration for organizing my bookshelves; I decided to squeeze all the books that I read into the bookshelf on the left and the unread books into the one on the right. Yup, it goes to show how many books I still have that I need to read…

I did my best to sort my unread books by genres, but to be honest with you, I wasn’t particularly happy with how it turned out right after reorganizing my bookshelves.
In particular, I wasn’t at all happy with the color scheme of my books; it kind of looked a bit disorganized despite the fact they WERE in fact sorted by genres to some extent 😦
That said, I’m glad that I rearranged my bookshelves because it actually created some more space in my shelves!

All right, enough about the overview, let’s take a closer look at the individual shelves and we’re going to start from the top.

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I’m not going much into these books here but I’ll give you the titles instead.

From left to right:

  • Lab Girl by Hope Johren
  • Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly
  • Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders
  • All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
  • The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
  • The Man Who Loved Children by Christina Stead
  • Tenth of December by George Saunders
  • No Safe House by Linwood Barclay
  • The Nightwalker by Sebastian Fitzek
  • The Unit by Ninni Holmqvist
  • Dune by Frank Herbert
  • One Day by David Nicholls

 

On the next shelf, we have:

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  • Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell (Oops, some books are upside-down…)
  • Holding up the Universe by Jennifer Niven
  • All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
  • Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly
  • The Vintage Teacup Club by Vanessa Greene
  • Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
  • The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
  • The Pact by Jodi Picoult
  • Watermelon by Marian Keyes
  • Bone Gap by Laura Ruby
  • Luck, Love and Lemon Pie by Amy E. Reichert
  • All the Good Parts by  Loretta Nyhan 
  • Sweetbitter by Stephanie Danler
  • The Keeper of Lost Things by Ruth Hogan
  • Always by Sarah Jio

 

Now, let’s move down to my Classic section:

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Actually, there are WAY TOO MANY to enumerate and most of them are from my Out-of-Control-Book Haul and Crazy Classic Book Haul, so if you’re interested, please check them out, too 😀

The books on this shelf that ARE NOT from those hauls are:

  • Most Secret by Nevil Shute
  • The Public Image by Muriel Spark

The funny thing is that I myself think I did a pretty good job in fitting everything in this shelf, but two of my Bookish friends are actually not at all happy with this layout; they favor how my Classic section used to look like (You can see my Instagram photo here) – they are saddened by my pretty Penguin English Library editions being pushed back and not showing lol

 

All right, we’re almost there! On the bottom shelf we have:

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  • The Mistborn Trilogy by Brandon Sanderson
  • Truthwitch by Susan Dennard
  • Windwitch by Susan Dennard
  • Gemina by  Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
  • Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth
  • Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo 

That is it!!
Phew, I didn’t even know how many books I’ve actually got myself. I probably should have stuck with buying paperbacks rather than hardcovers; my tiny bookshelves have been filling up at a much faster pace than I had anticipated!
I think I’ll need to learn to read on my Kindle too…

Anyways, thanks for sticking around, hope you all have a great reading week! XD