My guilty pleasure.

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Some of us like to pretend all our likes and interest are 100% above board and super cool. Some of us don’t care. I am one of those who doesn’t care. So here I am, about to drive you nuts with my Jane Austen obsession.

Yes, I said it. Im obsessed. I have watched every version of every adaptation of her novels but I’ve also watched movies like, Becoming Jane & The Jane Austen Book club, because you know, I had to. There was never any choice. I simply have no free will when it comes to this, so much so that I also own various copies of her novels in both paperback & kindle.
Yes, I do realize that sounds insane, and to be honest, it probably is. How many copies of Pride & Prejudice does a person need? All of them. Duh!
I have purchased every version of her books that show up on Kindle sales. I try and purchase every paperback & hardcover I come across but sometimes my husband has to put his foot down. You see, we used to move, a lot. And he was always the poor soul that got stuck carrying the heavy boxes of books [my kids have quite an impressive collection of books also] but every once in a while I manage to sneak a few in. Now don’t get me wrong, I am obsessed but I am not a hoarder. I don’t keep every single copy I purchase. Whenever I stumble upon that poor sweet innocent soul who has not had the pleasure of a Jane Austen novel, I have to gift it to them. They may read it, they may not, but at least I know I did my service to humanity by making it accessible to them. I tend to do that with my favorite books [I.E-  The Outlander Series & anything by Francine Rivers] because I can’t seem to help myself from wanting to share the love.

So, having recently finished watching Sense & Sensibility [I was missing the truly one of a kind voice of Mr. Alan Rickman, may he rest in peace] and suddenly I found myself trying to remember the last time I made time for one of the classics [I am also a fan of Elizabeth Gaskell] and I realized I have been distracted over the last couple of years with the newer books and I have not read as many of the classics as I always intended to.
There really are so many books and so little time, the saying may be a cliche, but it’s a cliche for a reason.

So off I went, to check my Amazon account for all of the Jane Austen novels to re-send to my kindle, but also, to discover some new classics I have not yet read. It seems that I decided to tackle a couple of novels by the Brontë sisters. The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by
Anne Brontë, Jany Eyre by Charlotte Brontë & Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë [we can blame Twilight for that last one] I am also considering some Shakespear but I am not entirely sold on that just yet.
I am further looking into authors like John Steinbeck, George Orwell & Anthony Burgess to name a few. There are so many books by so many great authors that have been around for ages that I have been wanting to read and yet have not made time for. I think now may be a good time to try and visit the past and hopefully learn from it.

If you are a fan of the classics, and you have any suggestions, I am open to most authors to discover. I have a few that I am looking to read that I did not mention in an effort to keep this short, sweet and to the point but its getting late now and I have to run.

Til next time!

Love,

-N

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The genius of Katherine Center.

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Hey, bookworms!

I just finished this little gem, How to Walk Away by Katherine Center, which is available for pre-order and will release on May 15th and it’s 100% worth your time & energy.

I was a little iffy about starting this, not because of the book or the author, I had zero knowledge of either until I received it in the mail, but clearly, it was meant to be. No, my hesitation came from the fact that I was in a reading slump and everything I had tried before had been a failure, so I went in hopeful but weary and I did not regret it.

This was THE book, the one that kept me up at night and was the first thing I had to pick up in the morning, as soon as I knew that husband & kids were ready for the day and out my door. I could not put it down at night and I knew that come 6AM, I would live to regret my stay up late choice but the truth is that Margaret, Kitty & Ian never really gave me a choice.

The genius of Katherine Center is that she created a story that was so real, you could see this being someone’s true life story, with characters that were so human, that I fell in love w them, laughed with them, cried with them and got so annoyed with them,  I wished more than once, they would trip while crossing the street & get run over by a truck [Yes, I am looking at you Chip] but I still could not manage to put the book down, even when I really wanted to hit someone in the face with the book.
Now, this may not seem like much to you, but coming from me, someone who has an extremely low tolerance for annoying and has no problem dropping a book and moving on to the next tale, it is high praise. After all, life is too short to waste time on books that just don’t quite do it for you, especially when there are always so many books and so little time.

I had heard, from many members on a Facebook group that this was the kind of story that made you want to look up, buy & read every book she has ever written, and you know what? They weren’t wrong. Not only will I be sure to look into her other works, but this is just one of those stories that I will read again & again. It has officially been added to my favorites shelf, the one full of books I tend to pick up about once every 12-18 months when I find myself missing the characters.

What I loved most about this book is that often times, authors write stories like this one and create unrealistic expectations for the readers. Stories where miracles always happen, where we always get our happy ending, where our leading man is always Prince Charming and the leading lady is Wonder Woman, and no matter what life throws at them they always win in the end, they always get exactly what they wanted. Sadly, more often than not, life is not like that. Life knocks us down and we have to learn to get up, to keep going, to shift our perspective and recognize that our happy ending is here, it just looks different than what we had planned for and THAT is the lesson I take away from this book. Life is what we make it, it’s like the old saying “life is what happens while we are busy making plans.” And that is the truth of it, isn’t it? Things rarely go as planned, life tends to go off scripts and sometimes we are busy feeling sorry for our selves when someone else out there is doing so much worse. We can always be grateful for what we have, even if we sometimes wish we had more and now thanks to Kathrine Center and Ian’s mother I will always remember to go through life’s moments with this in mind:

“when you don’t know what to do for yourself, do something for somebody else.”

Til next time

Love,

-N

 

Yay for bookmail!

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Happy Thursday fellow bookworms!

Today is a glorious day. I got this little jewel in the mail. Nothing says “happy Thursday enjoy a weekend of reading” like a free book that you apparently signed up for but have zero memory of it.
Don’t get me wrong, I am not complaining. This was bound to happen. I click on just about everything book related I come across on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram so eventually I was going to get something I didn’t remember asking for. I do remember clicking a Facebook link & downloading a free sample of this book, that I had not read yet because the book has yet to release and so I didn’t want to start something and wait months to be able to finish it, little did I know that a free ARC would come in the mail. Its like Christmas morning, adult version, getting a free unexpected book in the mail.

I would like to take second to thank the fabulous admins at Bookworms Anonymous and the amazing people of The Girlfriend and of course, the author herself Katherine Center for this amazing little surprise. I can’t wait to get started and tell you all about it! [without giving anything away, of course!]

Happy weekend to you all!

Love,

-N

 

Reading slumps are no fun.

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Hey, bookworms!

Notice how Tassy & Milo have this “I am not amused” look on their faces…?
Yeah, that has been the look on my face these past few weeks.
I am on a roll with my choice of books and not a good one, I hate to admit.

In the last few weeks, I have read a few of Bella Forrest’ books [ The Gender Game as well as The Secrets of Spell Shadow Manor] with no success, I couldn’t get into the latter and couldn’t make it past book 2 of the former.

After months of being waitlisted, I finally got my hands on The Hazel Wood & I could not finish it for no other reason than I am a giant coward and fairytales coming to life to hunt you down give me nightmares. No seriously, I am like a 3 yr old when it comes to potentially creepy. I was so excited for that book too, seemed right up my alley and it was a good story, from what I could tell. I got about 75% in [Kindle] but the more the story went along, the creepier it got and the more I started to feel like there were creepy things watching me. When I realized that I could not bring myself to finish the book I did the responsible thing and returned it to the library so that someone else could enjoy it.

Currently, I am trudging along, Intuition, book 2 of the Premonition series by Amy Bartol. I read book one, Inescapable, fairly quickly & I just started book 2 yesterday and I am only a couple of chapters in. I don’t hate the story, I don’t even think there is anything wrong with it, just as I didn’t think there was anything wrong with the other 4 books I’ve picked up recently, I really do believe the problem right now is me. I feel like I am not finding the right books for my frame of mind. It’s very disappointing if not frustrating. I love to read, it’s a huge part of my wind-down and de-stress process and not being able to find a story that I can really get lost is just no fun. I will say Ms. Bartol did an excellent job w giving us something a little more original than vampires and werewolves, I remember starting the book and praying that Reed [main male character] was not a vampire/werewolf. I think I have read one too many of those stories over the last 10 years alone & I am always looking for something new.

Please note that this blog is meant to be more of a Namie’s book journal than an actual book review and my inability to get into a book, for whatever reason, is not meant to be taken as the book sucks. I am not a huge fan of actual reviews because as human beings we are all so different and one person’s “sucky storyline” is another person’s literary masterpiece. Books are not one size fits all and authors work very hard on their product. I love to share and express my thoughts and opinions while always being respectful of someone’s hard work & dedication to their craft.
I could name hundreds of popular stories that just weren’t for me, but I do believe that the important part is that people pick up a book and read, what they read or how they read does not really make a difference as long as they get to enjoy a story, and as I previously stated I do believe my own personal frame of mind these days is more of an issue than the actual storylines.

You see, I quit my job last summer to do something else with my life and that has unfortunately not worked out the way I had hoped. So currently I sit at home cooking and cleaning while I wait for my husband and children to get home from work/school & attempt to figure out what the next step is for me. In between all of that boring housework I try to distract my mind with books but it seems as though I am just not hitting the right ones for me, right now and it’s not just books, I can’t find a single show or movie that I can get into either. These days I take Tassy & Milo for long walks more than I do any actual reading. I guess that is good, exercise is good for me or so we are told.

If any of you have any suggestions for books [though movies and shoes are acceptable too] Im open. Send me a message, comment, tweet, IG post.

Anyways, I am off to try and read some more. It’s too cold for walks right now.

Til next time!

Love,
-N

Dear eBook retailers & publishers…

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Good morning fellow bookworms!

Im here to rant a little this morning. I am sorry about that.
Two rants in a row, is really not what I had in mind and this blog is not about ranting, but here is my issue:

I own a Kindle, I own over 600 ebooks. I am, however, making this a general complaint because it’s not an issue that is specific to Amazon.

My issue is this:
I pay good money for my ebooks because I love and respect my authors and their hard work and I want to support them, yes I watch for sales and take advantage of them whenever possible, I also borrow books from the library when its an option but I do pay good money a lot of the time, they aren’t all free or cheap and I do so because I am under no misconception that writing a book is easy.

About 90% of these books are not lending enabled, and to me, this is frustrating. As an avid bookworm, I want to share the love for reading with everyone and anyone and ebooks are so much better, easier and safer to share than paperbacks.

So, why can’t I share my books with my friends?
I own the book, I paid good money for them, especially considering how much cheaper it is to produce an electronic book than an actual paperback/hardback as no paper, ink or distribution goes into the production process.

To make matters worse, for me anyway, those few books that are lending enabled can only be loaned once. So I am here voicing my unhappiness about the fact that I am allowed to spend a small fortune on ebooks but cant share most of them and those that I can share can only be shared once. How is this acceptable?

I feel like publishing houses don’t see the benefits of allowing the customer to share the books. When someone lends you a book that you are interested in but maybe aren’t familiar with the author or not entirely sure that is a topic you would enjoy so why shell out $9.99 for the book, it opens the door to the possibility that you will love the book and purchase more from that author in the future. I really believe that there is a huge missed opportunity here because publishers [I have it on good authority that the choice to make books lending enabled are up to the publishing house and not the author] can only see the bottom line financially and not the bigger picture.
Personally, I am not one to spend a lot of money on a book that sounds promising but I am not familiar with the author. I am more likely to take a chance with a new author if the book is from the library [Thank God for Overdrive] or Kindle Unlimited or a friend is allowing me to borrow the book. Once I am familiar with the author writing style, I will buy more of their books, and I really believe that the same could be said for most of us.

Ok, well… I am going to shut up now because ranting and complaining probably won’t change a thing but well, it needed to be said. I needed to get it off my chest. I don’t exactly feel better now, but I am hoping I am not alone in this.

Rant over. Thanks for listening.

Til next time!

Love,
-N

Random rant.

https_blueprint-api-production.s3.amazonaws.comuploadscardimage267762facepalm-emoji-ios10-emojipediaHey, bookworms!

Just wanted to share a quick post, mostly to let you know that I haven’t forgotten about Y’all or that I gave up on sharing my love for books with all of you.
It’s been a busy few weeks & I’ve spent as much time as possible reading, though not reading enough and not a thing that has been worth blogging about.

Actually, I learned or rather, I recently reminded myself that I am not a fan of big series, never have been, always known it but I tried, again, to read a large series. I don’t know why I bother, with the exception of Harry Potter I really have disliked every series that has more than 3, maybe 4 books.
Here is my issue, it seems to be that I find that most of the large series are just dragged out. I get it, authors make money off books and I appreciate SO much all their hard work and dedication but sometimes authors really drag the storyline by adding so many unnecessary details and for reasons, I don’t understand, I keep trying.

Harry Potter was done so excellently. 7 books, just enough details to keep you interested without wanting to give you every single second of those 7 years, I wish more authors took this route. I understand that everyone is different and there are tons and tons of books to read so I don’t have to read everything, I can just move on to the next book, but I really want to finish Outlander, I’ve been stuck for a long time now on book 5, The Fiery Cross and I wanted to like Bella Forrest’s The Gender Game series & P.C Cast’s House of Night and yet, I just couldn’t do it. It sucks. I know I am not good with long series and yet I do it to myself, I keep trying when I know how it’ll all end with me in a rut because I could not finish the book/series. 😦

That is all. Rant over. Thanks for listening.

Til next book!

Love,

-N

Beneath the Water.

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I recently won an eBook of Beneath the Water by Sarah Painter from a Goodreads giveaway. Trust me, I was as shocked as you are. In all my years entering Goodreads giveaway’s this is my 2nd win and the first was just about 18 months ago.

I had previously purchased & read The Language of Spells by her and I liked it enough to purchase another of her books, The Secrets of Ghost, but I have to say I did enjoy this so much more. It could have just been the historical fiction is more my thing than anything else, though my taste really is all over the place when it comes to books. I was expecting more magical realism when I added this to my “want to read” list a few months back, but this turned out to be something totally different than my previous experience with Sarah’s stories and I was not disappointed.

Set in Scotland [my favorite place to read about & #1 in my to travel to someday list] we get a little history, small-town gossip, and mental health issues, among other things. I really enjoyed this book & look forward to reading some more of her work.

Til my next read bookworms!

Love,

-N

My Susanna Kearsley Journey.

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In 2014, by some kind of miracle, I discovered Susanna Kearsley’s The Winter Sea. It was the exact kind of story I never knew I always needed. The way she brought together past & present did a lot more than just give me a wonderful story, it gave me an interest in Scottish history.
I will admit, I have always been a bit of history nerd, as I previously stated in another post but, Scottland’s history was a new area for me and so, as soon as I finished The Winter Sea, I immediately picked up the next book in the series, The Firebird.
Now, I will shamelessly admit that what first drew me into her book was the cover, she really does have the most beautiful artwork on her covers.

And now you know the story of how I fell in love with Susanna’s stories.IMG_3276

So a few days ago, needing something that would be more than a book to read for the sake of reading, and after having carefully and patiently watched for sales and purchased every single one of her books [took me a little over 18 months to acquire them all] I decided to pick up Shadowy Horses, as it sort of ties with The Firebird, which I have already read, and I was not disappointed.

I must admit that I did pick it up with the idea of spending more time with Rob, I assumed for some reason he would be the main character, but he wasn’t Verity was… still, I got to spend some time with Rob. I was just not expecting Rob to actually be Robbie, an 8 yr old child.
I had a chance to fall in love with Robbie as a child, in Shadowy Horses, as I fell in love with Rob as an adult in The Firebird. I got to know more about him, his family & the wonderful people he grew up around. In this book, she gave me a chapter of Roman history to be interested in, which will lead me to, sooner or later, start reading more and researching more about that particular time in history, as I know more about the fall of Roman Empire than the raise.

Let me be clear that one does not need to read one book to enjoy the other. Her characters seem to make appearances here and there in other books, but it’s not all one big series and you can read one and the other or not.

I finished Shadowy Horses yesterday and all through dinner, family movie night & even this morning, I’ve had this need to go back to my book, but the story has ended and I have no more time to spend with Robbie, Verity, Peter & David. I do hope she someday gives me more of them. Until then, I will read her other books and patiently wait for her newest to release 😀

If you like historical fiction I do suggest you check out at least one of her books. This was my 4th book by her, having read Named Of The Dragon in 2016 and enjoyed that one too. If you love her books as I do, feel free to let me know which of her books are your favorite & why.

Til next book!

Love,

-N

Just a wee announcement…

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Hey, Bookworms!

Its been a quiet couple of weeks, I’ve been busy adulting & reading.

Since my last post, I have had the pleasure of enjoying Sarah Addison Allen’s First Frost, as well as Huntley Fitzpatrick’s What I Thought Was True and Staci Hart’s A Thousand Letters. I have also thrown myself into massive nerd mode by researching more about King George V & to the Romanov’s after I was very disappointed to find out that Queen Victoria’s journals are available online but not to the individual public. 😦
What can I say, my taste and interest are all over the place…

But to the reason I am here:

As you all know this blog is a new adventure for me, it not just about sharing my love of books with you all but also about keeping records for myself of some of the books I have read & loved most, a book journal if you will. As with any new adventure, there are still a lot of unknowns, I don’t know if I want to post about every single book I’ve discovered [as you well can see that I’ve read 3 and not said a word yet], I am also playing with the idea of sharing my photography with you all [it will be mostly book related, of course. And please do not judge by the photo posted along with this post] to that effect I want to share some links that you can follow me also:

Twitter @namiesbooks
Instagram @namiesbooks

Please know that I am very open to constructive criticism & new ideas. This really is as much about my fellow bookworms as it is about me, after all, what fun would it be if I didn’t have you all to share with?

Well, that was all I came to say. Stay warm bookworms!

Til Next post.

Love,

-N

Solis.


For this post, I have decided to go against using the cover image for Kat Ross’ Solis in favor of Tas & Milo’s jail shot. They look like aliens & they’re locked up & believe it or not, it’s oddly fitting, but don’t let my choice stop you from checking out the cover art, it’s actually really cool!

I just finished Solis this morning, which took me longer to read than I would’ve liked as everyone around here got sick, again. I think I am cursed when it comes to wanting to sit down & read Kat’s books.
I graciously received Solis from Kat as an ARC, and thank God for that because I don’t think I could have waited until February 19th to find out what happens to my precious Darius, though now I am sort of screwed until the next installment…

Speaking of my precious Darius, can we please have one book where he isn’t hurt, injured or captured in some form or another? Every time something happens to him, I have a small stroke & I am the idiot who thought he was dead for sure in this book. Please, don’t ever kill him off Kat, Please?!

I actually finished this book this morning, but I had to take a minute to process everything I just read. I spent all day thinking I needed to hurry up & get back to my book, but of course, the story has ended, and so there is nothing to get back to for now.
I miss them all though. I want to know what happens to them next, I have so many questions about the new talismans and so many questions about where in the world are my favorite character’s from the original trilogy but I will be patient because I know that sooner or later I have to see them again. Someday. Somehow. Preferably in a new story 😉

So Nazafareen did it again, she got herself into some trouble because let’s be honest, the girl has a temper and finding trouble seems to be what she does best, but she always does the right thing and she is loyal to a fault. I love that about her, she really sticks to her people through the good, the bad & the ugly.

We got to know the Maenads better which was interesting, I love strong, kick-ass female warriors.
I have a deep & profound hatred for the Pythia & her “daughters” that I didn’t think was humanly possible. How can you hate a character so much that is just that, a character? Well, easy. They messed with my Daevas and that is not acceptable or forgivable.
For a minute I thought maybe Thena had some a semblance of a redeeming quality but I was wrong, apparently. I am dying to know what those misguided creatures are up to & I hope they know what they are doing lying to Victor.
I’m also hoping the Pythia’s death is imminent.
I got to know Javid a little better. I really like him, he is very comfortable with who he is and brings an interesting twist to the story.
Slowly, the story is coming full circle, but Solis lays so much groundwork that it is impossible for me to cover them all, besides, what would entice you to pick up the book if I did that?
I will be impatiently waiting for book 3.

Til my next book ramblings friends,

Love,

-N