Aug 01

OwlCrate Giveaway!

Books/Writing, Giveaways 8

owlcrate giveaway

Sssshhh…we’re going to pretend that it’s still July, because that’s when this June OwlCrate giveaway was supposed to happen! July just FLEW by me and yesterday I thought, “OMG, I still haven’t posted that…” and then I got sleepy and forgot. July just basically kicked my ass. I didn’t finish a single book, I don’t think…maybe a non-fiction one on gardening. YIKES!! There just haven’t been enough hours in the day! Hoping to change that with August…and nothing pumps me up more than other people getting excited about books, and I know one of the best ways to get people excited is to give them books and book stuff! Anyway, so here we go. 😀

owlcrate giveaway

This is the June OwlCrate box, themed Make it Out Alive (you can see it on the Past Boxes page). Open to U.S. addresses only this time – I’m so sorry, all you lovely international people, but the shipping is just outrageous, as I’m sure you all know. Contest is open from now until Friday, August 11th, at midnight CST! Thank you all for following, and commenting, and sharing – I will be back with more reviews and fun bookish stuffs soon!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Jul 16

Review of When Dimple Met Rishi

Book Reviews 2 ★★★★★

Review of When Dimple Met RishiWhen Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon
Published by Simon Pulse on May 30th 2017
Pages: 380
Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
Goodreads five-stars

Dimple Shah has it all figured out. With graduation behind her, she’s more than ready for a break from her family, from Mamma’s inexplicable obsession with her finding the “Ideal Indian Husband.” Ugh. Dimple knows they must respect her principles on some level, though. If they truly believed she needed a husband right now, they wouldn’t have paid for her to attend a summer program for aspiring web developers…right?

Rishi Patel is a hopeless romantic. So when his parents tell him that his future wife will be attending the same summer program as him—wherein he’ll have to woo her—he’s totally on board. Because as silly as it sounds to most people in his life, Rishi wants to be arranged, believes in the power of tradition, stability, and being a part of something much bigger than himself.

The Shahs and Patels didn’t mean to start turning the wheels on this “suggested arrangement” so early in their children’s lives, but when they noticed them both gravitate toward the same summer program, they figured, Why not?

Dimple and Rishi may think they have each other figured out. But when opposites clash, love works hard to prove itself in the most unexpected ways.

Ok, prepare yourself. This review of When Dimple Met Rishi is not the most rational thing I’ve ever written, because I was left in an ooey-gooey pile of feels after finishing this book! I was not. prepared. Modern fiction isn’t generally my thing, but the blurb for WDMR was just too awesome and I had to pick it up. I’m SO GLAD I did!


First off: Dimple. I love her so much! She’s quirky, she’s nerdy, she’s spunky, she’s smart and not embarrassed by it (something I really struggle with). She’s not perfect, and she’s not cookie-cutter. I adored her reaction to Rishi’s first words to her – THAT was perfect. Appropriate? “Nice?” No. But no one is perfect, and we all have different ways of dealing with situations. I’ve seen a little of the mumbo-jumbo i.e., people getting their underpants in a wad over some of the things she does, and my opinion is still that NO, she is NOT perfect, and most readers will love her more for it.

So then, obviously: Rishi! He’s cute. He’s also SUPER traditional. Somehow he manages to be cute at the same time, and I’m still a little confused by that. Hehe. I think Rishi grows as a character the most in the course of the book. He becomes more of his own person, rather than the “good boy” who wants to please his parents so badly he will give up parts of himself to do it.

The story introduced me to Indian culture more and better than anything else I’ve ever read. I don’t have any friends or even acquaintances from that background, so I was a little lost in the beginning by some of the terms and traditions that were more alluded to than explained. Eventually I figured everything out, but I did end up Googling a couple of things.

I also bawled. At one particular point. I was just so crushed and I couldn’t BELIEVE I felt so strongly about “it” because at first I was all for Dimple just saying EFF THIS to everything…but as I read I realized that completely bucking her family’s traditions is not, actually, what will make her happiest. However she IS a modern American woman and as such…she totally does things her way.

Dimple and Rishi’s relationship and them growing into themselves is obviously the main focus of the story, but there are a couple of side plots as well. The first involves some of the other students at the camp they are attending and how disrespectful (to say the least) the rich, white students are to anyone who is “other,” as Dimple puts it. The second involves Rishi’s brother and Dimple’s roommate and I was intrigued enough to hope for a sequel with them as the major characters.

WDMR was one of the most satisfying books I’ve read this year. While of COURSE I would love to read more of Dimple and Rishi’s story, it is beautiful and amazing just as it is and I closed the book entirely happy. 5 stars!



Jul 12

Review of The Hate U Give

Book Reviews 2 ★★★★★

Review of The Hate U GiveThe Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
on February 28th 2017
Genres: Modern, Young Adult
Pages: 453
Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
Goodreads five-stars

Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed.
Soon afterward, his death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Protesters are taking to the streets in Khalil's name. Some cops and the local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family. What everyone wants to know is: what really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr.
But what Starr does or does not say could upend her community. It could also endanger her life.

I’ve been trying to write a review of The Hate U Give for weeks and weeks now. It’s difficult to put my thoughts about it into a cohesive form, so I’m just kind of going to put a few things out there. Also, I’m aware that this book is HUGE because of it’s subject matter and representation. I read it BECAUSE of that, because I know that I am in the majority and I want to understand what the minority goes through and feels. I realize a book will never give me a complete understanding, but I do think reading #ownvoices books can help. The entire point of reading is to learn and to travel and experience things in our mind that we can’t or don’t have the opportunity to experience in our place in the world.

THUG is an important book because it so thoroughly places the reader into another person’s shoes. Because it was written by someone who has been there. She didn’t have to do research to see how Starr and her friends and family would talk – she knew, because her family is Starr’s family, her town is Starr’s town. This isn’t someone from the outside looking in and writing about it, this is someone writing what they have seen right in front of them.

Read The Hate U Give to see the world outside your comfort zone. Read it to understand why people have and do react the way they do to words, implications, and events. READ. IT.


The truth casts a shadow over the kitchen—people like us in situations like this become hashtags, but they rarely get justice. I think we all wait for that one time though, that one time when it ends right. Maybe.

The Great 

  • Angie Carter does a fabulous job of giving her characters unique voices. I could hear each character distinctly and it was amazing. I felt like I was following Starr around, eavesdropping.
  • I was completely immersed in the story. When the pivotal point of the story, the shooting, happened, I felt like I’d been sucker-punched. I felt sick. I had to put the book down and go compose myself. At first I tried reminding myself that it was just a book, but of course that didn’t work because OH YEAH STUFF LIKE THIS HAPPENS PRETTY OFTEN and IN OUR WORLD and…yeah.
  • This book helped me understand a lot of things. It helped me see a lot of things for the first time. Every town I’ve ever lived in (except in Korea, heh) had two sides and I never completely understood why it was that way, when segregation was a thing of the past decades ago…supposedly. Starr’s struggle to be more, her struggle with her feelings for Chris, and to bridge what seems to her (and to the reader) to be the two sides of her life, encapsulated everything I’ve ever been confused about or wondered why when it came to those two sides of town.
  • FAMILY. I freaking love Starr’s family. Her parents’ relationship isn’t perfect but it’s there. Her entire family – her blended family, there are step and half brothers and sisters in there too – is there for each other. They pull together. They may picker and fight but in the end they are there and it’s amazing.

The Other Thing:

  • I, personally, was really disturbed by the wrecking of the town and the looting/destroying of property that went on during some parts of the book (mirroring, obviously, a lot of actual events as well). HOWEVER. What really came home to me was that while no, I didn’t agree with the characters doing it, I finally understood to some extent why. I understood that it was a form of expressing how angry and scared Starr and her friends and neighbors were, of the injustice and prejudice that seem to meet them at every turn. Did that make it right? No. Starr even says so later. But I finally had some sense of why things like that happen.

Sometimes you can do everything right and things will still go wrong. The key is to never stop doing right.

5 stars.



Jul 10

Down the TBR Hole #20

Books/Writing 4

down the tbr hole

Holy crap, it’s been awhile! I’m trying to get back into this one, at the very least. I’ve started to add books again so it’s definitely time to continue going through the old ones.

Time to wield the axe again – I’m mercilessly culling my TBR list on GoodReads with the amazing Down the TBR Hole meme by Lia at Lost in a Story (who has, somehow, already made it completely through his own TBR)!

Most of you probably know this feeling. Your Goodreads TBR pile keeps growing and growing and it seems like there is no light at the end of the tunnel. You keep adding, but you add more than you actually read. And then when you’re scrolling through your list, you realize that you have no idea what half the books are about and why you added them. Well, that’s going to change!

It works like this:

  • Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 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?


When I started this series of posts, I had 604 books on my TBR list. As of today, I have…645. HO.LY. I’ve added more than I thought! All that progress I thought I had made…haha. 😛 Anyway, as usual covers link to GoodReads.


Title/Author: The Lions of Al-Rassan, by Guy Gavriel Kay

Date Added: May 11, 2015

Thoughts: This is one of those books I have NO recollection of at all, and have no idea how or why I added it.

Judgment: Go.




: Dead Witch Walking, by Kim Harrison

Date Added: May 11, 2015

Thoughts: Oh, this is one of those I still want to get around to EVENTUALLY…and I have a Nook copy!

Judgment: Keep.





Title/Author: The Pride of Lions, Marsha Canham

Date Added: May 11, 2015

Thoughts: This is yet ANOTHER one of these that I have no memory of…where the HELL was I finding these books?

Judgment: Go.





Title/Author: Through a Dark Mist, by Marsha Canham

Date Added: May 12, 2015

Thoughts: I like Robin Hood, but this one just sounds blah.

Judgment: Go.





Title/Author: Dragons Lair (Justin de Quincy #3), by Sharon Kay Penman

Date Added: May 15, 2015

Thoughts: I enjoyed the first 2 in this series, but for some reason haven’t got my hands on the next one yet!

Judgment: Keep.




: An Ember in the Ashes, by Sabaa Tahir

Date Added: May 15, 2015

Thoughts: Ahhh, how have I not read this yet?

Judgment: Keep!





Title/Author: The Shadow of the Wind, by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Date Added: May 15, 2015

Thoughts: Yet another one that I REALLY want to read, but somehow never have.

Judgment: Keep.





Title/Author: Bellman & Black, by Diane Setterfield

Date Added: May 15, 2015


Judgment: KEEP!!



Title/Author: The Firebird (Slains #2), by Susanna Kearsley

Date Added: May 15, 2015

Thoughts: Apparently I’m super bad at reading sequels…because I loved the first of this series but yet here we are.

Judgment: Keep!




Title/Author: A Companion to Wolves (Iskyrne World #1), by Sarah Monette and Elizabeth Bear

Date Added: May 16, 2015

Thoughts: Uhhhhh…sounds mildly interesting but not so much to stay on the list.

Judgment: Go.



4/10 this time. Not as good as I hoped, but not too bad!



Jul 09

Sunday Post #1

Books/Writing, Life 1

Linking up with Kimberly over on Caffeinated Book Reviewer today! Going to give the Sunday Post a whirl for a few weeks and see how it works out for me.


This week we are supposed to FINALLY receive our shipment of stuff from Korea! And by stuff I mean our BED. I am sooooo tired of sleeping on an air mattress. 😛 Also by stuff I mean BOOKS!!! And shelves. I’m so excited to get everything put into it’s new place here. Of course it’s getting packed up again right before Christmas, but I’m choosing to ignore that for now. Hehe.


This Week:

  • I was interviewed by Victoria Grace Howell over on her blog Wanderer’s Pen, for her post “So Your Character’s from South Korea...” – go check it out!
  • Not quite THIS week, but I started a blog for all my gardening and herbalism experiments! Check out The Bent Gardener. 😀

Next Week:

  • Down the TBR Hole #20 – finally getting back on the road with this meme and my ever-growing TBR pile!
  • Review of The Hate U Give (YA #OwnVoices)
  • Review of When Dimple Met Rishi (YA, #OwnVoices)


Anything exciting going on in the book world this week? I feel REALLY out of the loop. Hope you all have a great day!


Jun 25

Mid Year Book Freak Out Tag

Books/Writing 1

I’ve seen this Mid Year Book Freak Out Tag around several blogs in my brief time blog-hopping the last week or so, and since I am SO behind on book reviews I thought this would be a good way to get sort of semi-caught up. Since I’m not even going to attempt to do a rundown on how all my various challenges are doing…*gives sidebar the stink-eye*…here we go! I’m really kind of shocked by some of these…I didn’t even realize I read them THIS year, January and February feel like they were SO long ago.

  1. Best book I’ve read so far: This is SO hard! It was down to 3…but I’m still going to have to go with one I finished on January 3! The Bear and the Nightingale, by Katherine Arden (all covers link to GoodReads!). I loved this so much I bought both the US and UK editions.
  2. Best sequel I’ve read so far: Hmm. Apparently I have a problem reading sequels, because I’ve only read a handful this year! I guess I’ll go with The Fallen Kingdom, by Elizabeth May, because it just wrapped up that series SO WELL!
  3. New release you haven’t read yet but want to: The Upside of Unrequited, by Becky Albertalli! I scanned through my list (what? doesn’t everyone have a new release list?) and this immediately jumped out.
  4. Most anticipated release for the second half of the year: OMG – HUNTING PRINCE DRACULA!!!!! There are not enough exclamation points in the WORLD. And THAT COVER.
  5. Biggest disappointment: To be honest, the A Series of Unfortunate Series of Events series. I read the first 4 and was just kind of like…meh. Not motivated at all to read any more.
  6. Biggest surprise: Forget Me Not, by Ellie Terry. I was totally NOT expecting to love this book as much as I do. Especially once I found out in was in verse. But it’s awesome. Go. Read.
  7. Favorite new (to me) author: This is hard too, because most of the authors I would put here are all debut authors! And it’s so hard to pick just one. Ugh. Ummm…ok. I’m was going to go with Katherine Arden but since I already used her book for one question…I’m going with Sandy Menon. If you haven’t read When Dimple Met Rishi yet, WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?!?
  8. Newest fictional crush: I don’t really have a new one, to be honest! Kind of weird, I know.
  9. Newest favorite character: I’m reeeeeeeally trying not to use a book more than once, but I just have to go with Dimple. I adore her and need to meet her ASAP.
  10. Book that made me cry: Hyperbole and a Half, by Allie Brosh. Yes, a graphic novel made me cry. Her description of depression hit so close to home I just burst into tears. It felt like someone finally “got it” and I wasn’t just weird or the only one.
  11. Book that made me happy: Girl Out of Water, by Laura Silverman! This was such a warm-fuzzy book for me. I thought Anise and Lincoln were just SO cute and I loved that Anise worked through her issues in such a mature way – while still remaining very much 17.
  12. Most beautiful book I’ve bought this year: I haven’t actually bought any like super-special editions this year! Mainly because moving. 😛 BUT, I am really in love with the UK edition of The Bear and the Nightingale. I just love all the details!
  13. What book(s) do I need to read by the end of the year: *coughcough* I haven’t read ACOWAR yet because I am terrified. Terrified, I tell you.

What do you all think? Have you read any of these? Loved or hated them? Am I justified in my fear of ACOWAR?

Find The Bent Bookworm on GoodReads, Bloglovin’, Instagram, and Twitter!


Jun 18

Review of The Fallen Kingdom

Book Reviews, Books/Writing 6 ★★★★★

When I was approved for a NetGalley copy of this book, I could not have been more excited! This was totally me:

And then I put off reading it for months because I’m terrified of endings. Then when I did read it, all I could do was flail because it was still months from being released. So now…drumroll please! I can finally bring you my review of The Fallen Kingdom, the last book in Elizabeth May’s delightful The Falconer Trilogy (but hopefully far from the last book she publishes).

Review of The Fallen KingdomThe Fallen Kingdom (The Falconer, #3) by Elizabeth May
on June 13, 2017
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
Goodreads five-stars

The long-awaited final book in the Falconer trilogy is an imaginative tour-de-force that will thrill fans of the series. Aileana Kameron, resurrected by ancient fae magic, returns to the world she once knew with no memory of her past and with dangerous powers she struggles to control. Desperate to break the curse that pits two factions of the fae against each other in a struggle that will decide the fate of the human and fae worlds, her only hope is hidden in an ancient book guarded by the legendary Morrigan, a faery of immense power and cruelty. To save the world and the people she loves, Aileana must learn to harness her dark new powers even as they are slowly destroying her. Packed with immersive detail, action, romance, and fae lore, and publishing simultaneously in the UK, The Fallen Kingdom brings the Falconer's story to an epic and unforgettable conclusion.

SPOILER ALERT for the first two books of the series! You can read my reviews of those here: The Falconer (Book 1), and The Vanishing Throne (Book 2).

The Fallen Kingdom picks back up exactly where The Vanishing Throne left off – at least in Aileana’s mind. In reality quite a bit has happened and I was super confused for a few chapters. This would be a negative EXCEPT Aileana is just as confused as the hapless reader and so it’s perfect. She slowly pieces together what happened to her and everyone else and while she’s just as much a badass as ever (and still feels the need to remind us of that now and again), she is not as in control as she seemed before, despite having all the unnatural powers of the fae. Aileana is human, and humans imbued with fae powers…well, it’s not working out so well for her.

Kiaran…um. Well. Kiaran is just as dark and broody as ever. His day/night personality was more in evidence here, and it was more disconcerting than ever before. However…he still wasn’t as dark as I was expecting. Good thing…I guess? He’s the Unseelie King, he’s supposed to be evil and dark and twisted…and he was, but we don’t really see that directly. Also when Kam actually gets to him it was a little anticlimactic because he really didn’t seem all that different. The end though…be. still. my. bleeding. heart.

Aithinne as queen of the Seelie fae is just as amazing, hysterical, and badass as ever. I still adore her. I still want her to be my best friend.

She still has the best lines in the book but I unfortunately can’t quote any of them because my ePub file expired and my copy of the book hasn’t arrived yet. Bad book blogger.

I LOVED the way the legend of the Morrigan and her sister was woven into the story. I definitely need to brush up on my Scottish mythology/folklore, because I’m fairly certain I was missing some subtle nuances but I still thoroughly enjoyed it.

As you can see, I had a few issues with the story, as characters weren’t quite what I expected or weren’t as developed as I hoped…but Elizabeth May managed to write such an amazing story with characters I was SO committed to, and also to not make it a happily-ever-after fairy tale. It has aspects of it, but…it’s not entirely, and that was part of what made me rate it 5 stars.

I can’t wait to see what Ms. May writes next! She’s definitely on my auto-buy list. Personally, I would love to see a book (or two or three) with Aithinne as the main character. Hint, hint, Ms. May. 😉

Many thanks to Chronicle Books and NetGalley for the review copy in exchange for an honest review!



Jun 05

New Digs

Life, Musings 11

First look at our new place!

This morning is the first time I have had time to truly relax in several weeks. Yes, there have been moments or even an hour here and there, but for the most part my husband and I have just been GOGOGOGOGO with barely time to breathe. We finally have our own place again, and are trying to settle in…the majority (as in, 85%) of our belongings won’t be here until the end of the month, so we are getting by on what was in our suitcases and the furniture we bought back home! Yay, new furniture!! For the first time in…ever? I’m so excited about it. We were so blessed and able to get amazing deals from some family friends who were retiring their furniture store.


I am probably the most excited about the roll-top desk that actually stayed in Virginia, due to difficulty of moving and the fact that we will be – drumroll please – moving back there in about 6 months! Why yes, I just love moving twice in one year, don’t you? 😛 But then we will be back HOME and it will all be worth it.

Tennessee isn’t TOO far from home, anyway, and it’s a lot like home. At least it is in the States. Even if some of the uber-conservative-fanatics I’ve seen have me a bit scared. 😛

Sadly I missed the release party for When Dimple Met Rishi, which was in Nashville only about an hour’s drive away from our new place…which we weren’t yet moved into. My pre-ordered book is still waiting on me there, whenever I get a chance to go explore and find Parnassus Books. Which looks amazing, and is obviously a huge priority but I am totally peopled and traveled out and want to do nothing but sit at home on my couch and vegetate. By which I mean read and drink coffee.

Traveling like a little champ.

Tristan spent the last month with my sister-in-law’s family, during which time my 13-year-old niece became super attached to him and I felt horrible taking him back. But I missed my little buddy so so so much! And he seems very happy to be home…he went right back to sleeping in our bed and between us. His fur-parents are much pleased to be back with him. 😀

I’m hoping to be back at writing reviews and updates this week. Not holding my breath, because I’m still not quite sure how work is going to go and of course there’s all the organization stuff that absolutely MUST be done. I’m also trying to start a little container garden on my porch but the season is so far gone already that I’m behind!

So, what have I missed? What’s your new favorite release from April and May? What’s coming up this month that I might have overlooked?


May 08

The I Dare You #BookTag

Books/Writing 4

the i dare you #booktag

I’ve been off exploring and re-visiting beautiful places like this. I missed Virginia SO MUCH.

Oh hi! I haven’t entirely disappeared. Just mostly. I’m on vacation. Ish. Because I’m trying to house hunt and apply to universities at the same time and just WTF IS ALL THIS ADULTING. Also trying to ignore the fact that Virginia air is trying to kill me by giving me allergies so bad my eye swelled shut and I could barely see. Yay me. 😛

So this popped up in my inbox DAYS ago and I knew I wanted to do it. Many thanks to Cait @ PaperFury!


  1. What book has been on your shelves the longest?

Uhhhhh. Possibly the Samantha set from American Girl. Or the Little House on the Prairie set. I’m not sure. I loved the American Girl girls SO MUCH when I was like 8-10 years old. As in loved them enough that even though I am now GROWN and do not plan to have my own little American girl-child, I am tempted to buy all the sets and put them on my shelves…because obviously my friends and family have little girls who MUST be shown the love of reading, right? Not because I am just a book dragon and like to hoard matching books. Ahem.

2. What is your current read, your last read, and the book you’ll read next?

I just finished Girl Out of Water. It was AMAZING. Also a giant kick in the feels because…well. Maybe I’ll elaborate in a review at some point. But I kind of want to sleep with this book under my pillow because I feel like someone GOT ME. Even if I’m 10 12 years older than Anise.

My current read is Epic Tomatoes. Don’t judge. 😛 I like science, and growing things, and I’m fascinated by plant genetics. So bite me…though a tomato would be more tasty. 😛


My next read…I’m torn. I brought a bunch of books with me and haven’t had nearly as much time to read as I thought sooooo….what’s a girl to do.

3. What book did everyone like, but you hated?

Red Queen. Grrrr. Did not enjoy this one at all. Sorry, everyone. Read my rant-y review.

4. What book do you keep telling yourself you’ll read, but you probably won’t?

Who am I kidding…while I have a backlist of classics, I’m not sure when I’ll ever get around to reading them. I’ll be lucky to get to 12 for this year, especially since as of right now I think I’m at 1/12. 😛

5. Which book are you saving for retirement?

I don’t ever plan to retire, soooooo….

6. Last page: do you read it first or wait to the end?

Errr…can I plead the 5th? No? Okay. So…I don’t ever read the last page FIRST, but a lot of times when the suspense gets to me I will flip to the last few chapters, just to make sure my babies (i.e., my fav characters) survive and everything works out in the end. Guilty. As. Charged.

7. Acknowledgments: are they a waste of paper and ink or interesting?

I think they’re pretty cool, myself! I will admit, when they are more than 3 pages long I read the first couple pages and then skim the rest. Because I figure there’s absolutely no chance that *I* or anyone I know is in them, so…yeah.

8. Which book character would you like to switch places with?

Ugh. See, in most of my favorite books…the characters are kind of in less than ideal circumstances, so no one in their right mind would REALLY want to switch places with them…but I guess if I had to choose, I’d choose Claire from Outlander. Because not only does she hang a hunk of a Scottish Highlander for a husband (who is big and tough and the BEST WARRIOR, but also a big ol’ teddy bear), the whole area and time period is fascinating to me. Minus all the really shitty stuff she and Jamie and their family have to go through.

9. Do you have a book that reminds you of something specific in your life?

Isn’t every book connected to a memory? Wait, no. There are definitely some books I’ve read that I can’t recall where or when I read them. But most books on my shelves I remember the circumstances or where I was mentally when I read them. Like I read the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series when I was sick and could NOT get my hands on anything else – and in the process discovered an awesome series and author.

10. Name a book that you acquired in an interesting way.

I used to do book swaps on Swap-bot. I got Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore that way. That’s about as interesting as my book acquiring goes, haha!

11. Have you ever given away a special book to a special person for a special reason?

Yes. I gave my copy of Romancing the Inventor to someone, because my heart just told me it was perfect for them. Because representation.

12. Which book has been with your the most places?

Ummmm….well, Lord of the Rings is my go-to comfort read. So I have hard copies, Nook copies, and audio copies. But, the same could be said for Outlander…I just read Lord of the Rings first.

13. Any “required reading” you hated in high school that wasn’t so bad 2 years later?

Are you kidding me? I was that kid in high school who had all the material read 2 weeks after school started. I couldn’t get my hands on enough books, and if they were required, so much the better.

14. Used or brand new?

OMG. How can you even ask this question?? I love them ALL. If it’s a fairly new series I try to find like new condition books…if they are older, then I don’t mind them with some wear. I’m not a first-edition collector, I can’t afford it. Much as I would love to be…but then I might be afraid to actually read them.

15. Have you ever read a Dan Brown book?

What? No. Though I keep meaning to give the first one a try.

16. Have you ever seen a movie you liked more than the book?

The Princess Bride. Shocking, I know. Though Buttercup is possbily the lamest of lame heroines. The movie is hysterical, but the book is lame.

17. A book that’s made you hungry?

Nothing particularly comes to mind…food isn’t so present in most of the books I read, maybe? Or maybe I just don’t notice?

18. Who is the person whose book advice you’ll always take?

Um, I can’t say 100% of the time to anyone, but I love Emily May’s reviews and have found her tastes and opinions align with mine about 92% of the time. In real life, my best friend Mara has pretty good tastes and she’s known me forever so she’s good at picking stuff I like. 😉

19. Most read authors?

I’m totally copying Cait with the GoodReads screenshot. Hehe. Also this is kind of embarrassing, and skewed because Valerie Tripp wrote a ton of the American Girl books I read as a 10 year old. 😛

And I’m skipping the last question because it just breaks my brain. Hahaha. 😛



May 01

Rosemary Gladstar’s Herbal Healing for Men Review

Book Reviews 0 ★★★★

Rosemary Gladstar’s Herbal Healing for Men ReviewHerbs for Men's Health: How to Make and Use Herbal Remedies for Energy, Potency, and Strength by Rosemary Gladstar
on July 11th 2017
Genres: Nonfiction
Pages: 224
Goodreads four-stars

Increase your energy, vitality, potency, and strength with easy-to-make herbal remedies! Focusing on 24 herbs that powerfully support various aspects of men’s health, renowned herbalist Rosemary Gladstar shows you how to make teas, tinctures, baths, and foods to address the most common ailments affecting men, including heart disease, hypertension, infertility, stress, and prostate disorders.

This book is a slight departure from my usual reviews, but I was so excited to be able to read this book as an ARC! I have long admired Rosemary Gladstar’s other herbal remedy/medicine books, and as my husband was recently diagnosed with some health problems I was eager to see what things might be out in the herbal world more specifically for him. As Rosemary notes in her opening, most herbals focus on women MUCH more heavily than men, and in general you run across more women in alternative medicines and fields.

The book covers many topics of interest to men, including of course virility, prostate issues, memory functions, heart health, and many others. It is much more in depth than Rosemary Gladstar’s Medicinal Herbs: A Beginner’s Guide (naturally), but it “matches” the cover very nicely! I’ve pre-ordered a copy. The photography is PHENOMENAL. Seriously, I would buy it just for the pictures. There are recipes and case studies, but while Rosemary alludes to scientific studies, I couldn’t find any actual citations for them in the book. If you’re researching this kind of thing, you’re probably already aware of the sad state of affairs when it comes to scientific studies of natural/herbal healing and medicine, so perhaps this is not surprising, BUT I would have greatly appreciated better end notes and citations. Things like that are very important, as many doctors and the general public are still convinced that the only positive influence anything other than a pill has on a person is due to the placebo effect. Rosemary Gladstar and (obviously) many other herbalists, whether professional or amateur, believe otherwise…but it is not enough to believe, and in the scientific world case studies alone are not enough evidence. Due to the lack of notes, I knocked off one star. However, if you have done your research elsewhere this is an awesome book to add to your shelf for the dozens of recipes and suggestions within, whether you’re male yourself or you have men in your life that you love and care for. Be well!

P.S. This was originally supposed to be released on May 31, 2017, but now GoodReads has the release date as July 31 so I’m confused.

Many thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for an ARC for review. My opinions were not influenced in any way.