January was almost a bittersweet month for me, because it was my last January in high school, and therefore my very last j-term. As a student at an arts conservatory high school ever year we have an event called “j-term” (or “january term” I suppose) in which during the month of January we have no academic classes, and instead spend our time rehearsing some sort of performance that we put on at the end of the month. As an instrumental musician I have spent all but one of my years in the pit orchestra for whatever musical show the school puts on. Past years have been Fiddler of the Roof (my personal favorite) and Anything Goes, but this year was a little different because instead of a musical we performed Pirates of Penzance, and operetta, and instead of playing from a put underneath the stage, we played from on top of it.
Besides pirate themed music playing, this month I also spent time at synchronized swimming practice preparing for the first competitions in February, and went to a few book events! First I attended the Minnesota PassTruth Tour and met Susan Dennard and Alexandra Bracken, who are both hilarious and wonderful. I also went to an event for Ally Carter’s new book See How They Run. Ally Carter’s books are some of my favorites so it was super awesome to hear her speak.
I rounded out my January with my family’s annual trip to Palmquist Farm, an awesome place in Wisconsin where we do lots of skiing and other winter sports, eat lots of great food, and basically have a great few days out of the city. If you want to see some pictures of my trip (and how wonderful it looks there) I put together a whole post of them!
What I’ve Been Reading:
- The Love That Split the World by Emily Henry ★★★★☆ This was an gorgeous, amazing debut novel that was just released in January. Review!
- Elantris by Brandon Sanderson ★★★★★ I didn’t want to get my hopes up, because I am somewhat scared to be disappointed by a Sanderson novel, but honestly I think this is one of my new favorites of his books! (pshhh, let’s be real, they’re all my favorite) Elantris was EXTRAORDINARILY good. Loved the characters, the magic was intriguing, and it was a super captivating ride. Plus it had me basically screaming “Yes!!” At the end. So so so good. If you haven’t tried a Sanderson book yet and want to start with an adult fantasy, may I recommend this one? The 10th Anniversary Edition was just released, so really, you might as well.
- Passenger (Passenger #1) by Alexandra Bracken ★★★★☆ Passenger was pretty good. It had a great concept, and I thought Bracken did a great job of describing musicianship. (Honestly, I am amazed that she’s not actually a musician herself!) I thought the two main characters were very interesting, and I look forward to the sequel!
- Scarlet Epstein Hates It Here by Anna Breslaw ★★★☆☆ Scarlet Epstein had a hilarious premise but it ended up being… A bit strange, and actually a lot more about Scarlet’s family/social situation and her various troubles than the whole fanfiction angle. I didn’t end up loving it, but it was worth the read.
- See How They Run (Embassy Row #2) by Ally Carter ★★★★☆ As a sequel for All Fall Down, this was really good. It carried on with what happened in book one, while introducing a lot more. I have MANY more questions now that I’ve finished with it. I think I liked All Fall Down a little bit more, but this was great.
- Falling Kingdoms (Falling Kingdoms #1) by Morgan Rhodes ★★★☆☆ I liked Falling Kingdoms, and it had potential, but I just found it really really slow to me. I also really disliked the whole Magnus liking Lucia thing. Ewwwwwwww. I will be continuing the series because I do want to know what will happen (I really liked Cleo!) and as this was for the Falling Kingdoms Readalong the other hosts and I will have a group discussion / review up soon!
- Biggest Flirts (Superlatives #1) by Jennifer Echols ★★★★☆ This book was really just what I needed. It was fun, it was cute, it was hilarious and it was just a joy to read. There was some hidden deepness here and I really felt for Tia in so many ways. I’m also glad that this is the first in a series of companion novels because all the side characters were great and I look forward to spending more time with them!
- The Conspiracy of Us (The Conspiracy of Us #1) by Maggie Hall ★★★★☆ I really enjoyed this one! It was cool, and it really kept me on my toes. I’m currently writing a review, so I’ll have that up soon.
- This Savage Song (Monsters of Verity #1) by Victoria Schwab ★★★★★ This book was everything I wanted and more! I loved the whole world and the different types of monsters, and the book had such a perfect mood about it. Dark, but not too dark. Full review to come. I feel like this is one I won’t be able to get out of my head.
Quote of the Month:
“There was always a moment, just before she put her bow to the strings, where everything seemed to crystallize. She used to live for it, that second where her focus clicked into place, and the world and everyone in it fell away.” – Passenger by Alexandra Bracken, pg 32
Music of the Month:
The music I had on repeat this month came from the two main albums I listened to: MADE IN THE AM by One Direction and LIGHTS OUT by Ingrid Michaelson, the book playlists I became reobsessed with due to re-reads and upcoming releases, (can you guess what songs come from my Reckoners and Alloy of Law lists?) and a few singles including that one new Justin Bieber song I actually really like? (who would have ever guessed??)
On the Blog:
- THE LOVE THAT SPLIT THE WORLD // ARC REVIEW
- STEELHEART BY BRANDON SANDERSON // RE-REVIEW AND DISCUSSION
- THE SIREN BY KIERA CASS // ARC REVIEW
- SIMON THORN AND THE WOLF’S DEN // ARC REVIEW
- BLUESCREEN BY DAN WELLS // ARC REVIEW
- JANUARY 2016 TBR
- FALLING KINGDOMS READALONG ANNOUNCEMENT! // #KINGDOMREADERS
- DOORSTEP DELIGHTS // QUIRKSGIVING + MORE!
- MY BOOKSTAGRAM TIPS + PROCESS
Memes and Tags: