Bookish

2017 Resolutions: How did I do?

Last January I made this list of my top ten bookish resolutions for 2017… and now the time has come to see how I did! I’ve completely forgotten what my resolutions were, so this should be an interesting trip down memory lane.

1. Read 24 books. Done! Somehow the stars aligned this year and I actually managed to read THIS MANY books… don’t ask me how! (Come to think of it, I know exactly how: SO MUCH required reading for college!) Although I don’t really care about the number of books I read, I can’t help but be pleased with this count!

2. Read more classics. Done! This goal can also be credited to the many books I was required to read for my courses this year, especially for my tutorials at Oxford. So much Victorian literature!

3. Read something by Zadie Smith. Done! Luckily enough, White Teeth was on the list of assigned reading for the Writing Feminisms tutorial I’m taking this upcoming term so I finally got around to reading something by Zadie Smith. (Also, it was AMAZING. Would definitely recommend!)

4. Read more by Charles Dickens. Done! I ended up reading two more novels by Dickens this year: Hard Times and Oliver Twist. I enjoyed both, though not as much as Great Expectations. (How I love that novel…)

5. Read A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin. Nope! I feel as though I’m just destined to not read this book. Despite my incessant inclusion of this novel in countless TBR lists, for some reason I can’t seem to get around to reading it. Will 2018 finally be the year???

6. Continue posting to my bookstagram. Done! I’ve had such a blast updating my bookstagram, especially now that I have the privilege of being surrounded by so many beautiful buildings and scenes at Oxford.

7. Write more discussion posts. Done! I feel like I’ve definitely made an improvement by writing longer posts about my study abroad experiences and introducing weekly features like Feminist Fridays onto my blog. (Pssst! Any feedback on this point would be very appreciated!)

8. Be more engaged with the online book community. Unfortunately, I’m going to have to go with a no for this one. Although I’ve had an amazing time studying abroad, being at Oxford does mean that I have less time to blog. I’ve really missed reading and commenting on everyone’s posts!

9. Read slowly. Hmm…. probably not. Again, having so much work at Oxford means that I really can’t afford to spend my time slowly wading through novels like I’d love to do. So much to read, so little time!

10. Have fun!! DEFINITELY! One reason I love blogging is that it always reminds me to have fun with what I read. After all, what good is reading if you don’t enjoy it?

I unknowingly achieved over half of my bookish resolutions 2017– who would have thought?

What were your resolutions for 2017? Did you achieve them? Will you carry them over into 2018? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

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Monthly Wrap-Up

DECEMBER 2017 | Wrap-Up

December is… done?! Where did this month (and YEAR) go?!?! Decembers always tend to be whirlwinds of celebrations, seeing friends and family, and frantically trying to wrap everything up before the new year comes around once again. In case you’re curious, here’s what I was up to in December:

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In December I read a total of 17 books (HOW?! I honestly have no idea):

  1. The Reptile Room by Lemony Snicket
  2. Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain
  3. I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith
  4. Turtles All the Way Down by John Green
  5. The Wide Window by Lemony Snicket
  6. A Vindication of the Rights of Woman by Mary Wollstonecraft
  7. Blink by Malcolm Gladwell
  8. Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens
  9. The Hamlet by William Faulkner
  10. Woman and Labor by Olive Schreiner
  11. Woman Hollering Creek and Other Stories by Sandra Cisneros
  12. White Teeth by Zadie Smith
  13. Playing in the Dark: Whiteness and the Literary Imagination by Toni Morrison
  14. Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe
  15. Memorial by Alice Oswald
  16. Children of the Mind by Orson Scott Card
  17. Ann Veronica by H.G. Wells

I read a lot of fantastic books in December, which makes choosing a favorite quite difficult (as per usual). However, the book I’ve been thinking the most about this past month is definitely Turtles All the Way Down by John Green (which you can read my review of here). This novel exceeded all of my expectations and proved that not everything falls prey to the hype monster one hundred percent of the time!

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For some reason it simultaneously feels like so much and nothing at all happened in December. In actuality, I guess a lot did occur: I flew back home from Oxford, transitioned back to living in the States, visited Wheaton, spent time with my family and friends, saw Watsky (!!!), celebrated Christmas, and read, read, read. It’s been strange being back home after living in Oxford for a few months, but I’ve really enjoyed simply spending time at home. I have plenty of prep reading to get through before term starts again, but I’ve also made sure to carve out some time to read for fun. I missed reading for pleasure so much!!

This month I also finished the third season of Fargo (SO ANGRY) and watched the new Star Wars movie, which I really enjoyed. (PORGS, people!)

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Here are some notable posts from my blog this past month:

Here are some posts that I loved reading this month (there are so many!!):

How was your month of December? What was the best book you read? Did you do anything really fun or exciting? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Discussion

Looking Back on 2017

For the past few years I’ve made one of these posts reflecting on the concluding year. After reading what I wrote at the end of 2015 and 2016, it hit me just how much has happened in 2017.

I got accepted to study abroad for an academic year at Oxford University. My friends and I went to NerdCon in Boston on that same weekend, where I saw John and Hank Green speak and actually had a conversation with Watsky (honestly, amazing weekend). I wrote and performed my own monologue in the annual Wheaton Words production at my college. I visited the Met in New York City for the first time. I visited Willa Cather’s grave in Jeffrey, New Hampshire and took some very rainy photos (thanks, mom!). I watched my brother graduate from high school and start college in the fall. I said far too many goodbyes in September before traveling outside of the United States for the first time to begin my first term at Mansfield College in England. I visited so many incredible places, met even more incredible friends, and did things I never thought I would do (join my college’s soccer team at Oxford!). I ate in a chapel every day that was fit to be the Great Hall at Hogwarts, wore a gowns (short wizard capes) to formal dinners, and danced for hours at bops. I spent hours and hours in libraries and lecture halls studying my favorite subject in the world. I turned 21. I flew on a plane by myself for the first time. I said goodbyes to new friends and hello to so many old ones. I marveled at how much I did that I never, ever expected to achieve.

As always, I am grateful to everyone who made 2017 one of my best years yet despite the tumultuous world we live in. {And thank YOU for sticking with this little blog of mine!} Happy New Year!!

How was 2017 for you? Highlights? Things you’re looking forward to in 2018? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Books of 2017

Happy Tuesday!! The end of 2017 is just around the corner (!!!), meaning it’s time to reflect on what I’ve read thus far this year. Today’s Top Ten Tuesday theme highlights the best books we’ve read in 2017, and fortunately I have plenty of fantastic texts to choose from. I’ve decided to limit my list to the books I read for the first time this year because there were many, many rereads thrown into the mix. Here are my favorite books of 2017 in the order that I read them:

Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur

From my review: I bought a copy of Milk and Honey on a whim because I had heard a lot of great things about it. What I didn’t realize was that Rupi’s words would resonate so deeply with me and linger on in my mind long after I had read them. These poems are for anyone and everyone, regardless of whether or not you’ve read or enjoyed poetry in the past. Rupi Kaur has written poetry for human nature.

How to Ruin Everything by George Watsky

From my review: Reading this book felt like having the a random, hilarious, and well-spoken conversation with Watsky. How to Ruin Everything is definitely something I’ll be returning to in the future– for a laugh, for inspiration, and to be reminded that there’s nothing quite like the power of a good story.

The Song of the Lark by Willa Cather

From my review: I was enthralled by this novel. Everything about it captivated me from the very first sentence to the very last word. In fact, I was enjoying it so much that I marked all of my favorite passages with sticky notes, only to realize halfway through that I would have to take them all out when I was finished (it was a library book).

Sartoris by William Faulkner

From my review: When I first started reading Sartoris I was so confused by the many Johns and Bayards that I actually created a character web or family tree of sorts in an attempt to keep them all straight in my mind. However, I thought this would be a much larger hindrance than it ended up being in the long run because the characters became more defined as I became more invested in the story. In fact, the links between the characters– both linguistically with names and in terms of their relationships and personalities– soon became my favorite aspect of this novel. Faulkner uses the Sartoris family to ask a fascinating question: Are these events caused by the fate of the family or a logical cause-and-effect reaction? In other words, are these people responsible for their actions or have they already been destined (or doomed)?

Matilda by Roald Dahl

From my review: I really wish I had read this book when I was younger because I think Matilda’s character would have really resonated with me. Younger Holly would have been thrilled to read about a bookworm like myself who triumphed over obstacles against all odds. Matilda is such an important character for children to read about, both as a bookish hero as well as a strong, clever, independent female character.

The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins

From my review: I enjoyed The Woman in White far more than I had initially expected to when I turned to the very first page. Collins’ meticulous attention to details and carefully developed characters make for an impressive, memorable, suspenseful, and thrilling story. I’m so thankful that this novel was on my required reading list for this term– sometimes they contain unexpected gems!

Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

From my review: As the facade fades away, the reader realizes that what appears to be a utopian world is actually a dystopian society masked in false promises and illusions. I love Brave New World for the way it makes you think about our own society and what we value in our lives today. It’s interesting to think about how this novel was first published in 1932 yet it’s still relevant almost a century later. To me, this endurance is the definition of a classic.

Absalom, Absalom! by William Faulkner

From my review: For me, the most challenging aspect of this novel was deciphering exactly what happened in the Sutpen family. Who married who? Who killed who? Who had children and who didn’t? Who is still alive? In what order did this all take place? These questions and many others remained at the forefront of my mind the entire time I was reading. There are so many characters, voices, and events– not to mention the fact that it’s not told in chronological order. It was fascinating and exciting to constantly learn new information; however, it also makes it much more confusing to read. I think this is a novel that would absolutely benefit from being reread in the future now that I have the basic plot in my mind.

Quiet by Susan Cain

Sneak peak of my upcoming review: Cain has done incredible work providing both introverts and extroverts with a guide as to the importance of being “quiet.” As an introvert, I constantly found myself nodding along with her ideas and examples, seeing myself accurately reflected in her words. If more teachers, employers, friends, and family members read Quiet, the world would be a brighter, more productive, less stress-inducing place for introverts everywhere.

Turtles All the Way Down by John Green

I haven’t yet posted my review of John Green’s most recent novel, but rest assured that I enjoyed it immensely. The representation of mental health issues is incredible and I became invested in the characters almost immediately. You know a novel is great when you find yourself still thinking about it days later!

What are your favorite books of 2017? What do you think of the books that I’ve mentioned? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Monthly Wrap-Up

NOVEMBER 2017 | Wrap-Up

Happy December!! We are now in the middle of my two favorite months of the year: chilly November and festive December (though my November was also incredibly festive!). November has been a whirlwind of travel, celebrations, work, and more work. Now that term has officially ended for me (woo hoo!) I’m really looking forward to some rest and relaxation in December. But before that, let’s see what I was up to in November!

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In November I read a total of 3 books:

  1. The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snicket
  2. Rhetoric: A Very Short Introduction by Richard Toye
  3. The Time Keeper by Mitch Albom

My favorite book of the month was The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snicket. For some reason I never read this popular series when I was younger so I’ve never understood all of the references people make to them. I definitely regret not reading them sooner– they’re fantastic! So witty! So clever! So dark yet so funny! I’ve been listening to the audio book version narrated by Tim Curry and it’s extremely well done. I can’t wait to continue on with the rest of the series!

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I was so busy in November that it feels as though this month has stretched on forever! At the beginning of the month my friends and I took a trip to Brighton, England, which was really beautiful and lovely. You read more about it in my post here, but we basically spent one day perusing the downtown area and exploring the pier and another day admiring the extraordinary Seven Sisters Cliffs. A weekend in Brighton was definitely not enough time and I would love to go back at some point before my year abroad is over.

Seven Sisters Cliffs

In the middle of the month I celebrated my 21st birthday! Before you ask: I don’t feel older, especially since it isn’t even a big marker of drinking age in the UK. Still, I had a really great time with friends and I’m so thankful to be surrounding by such wonderful people.

Come to think of it, November has been a flood of holidays and celebrations. Not only did I have a birthday this month, but we also celebrated Thanksgiving and Oxmas. Since most students move out of their college accommodations for winter break, the city of Oxford gets into the festive spirit even before Thanksgiving. Streets and shops have been decorated for weeks now, and my college even had Christmas carol services and a formal dinner for us all. I feel like Christmas is right around the corner already even though December has just begun!

A big Christmas tree in our Chapel Hall

Of course, November wasn’t all fun and festivities: I’m finally done with all of my work for the term! An eight-week term might sound like no time at all, but the work is so intense that eventually it feels like you’ve been reading about Victorian literature and Faulkner for ages. I’ll miss the subjects I studied in Michaelmas, but I’m equally excited to launch into new subjects in Hilary. I can’t believe I’m already a third of the way through the year!

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Now that term has officially ended, I should finally have more time to actually blog on a regular basis! I’ve pretty much depleted my store of posts I had scheduled in advance, so it’s back to the blogger drawing board. I’ve got some new ideas I’ve been eager to try and I can’t wait to be able to read and comment on all of your lovely posts again. ❤

Here are some notable posts from my blog this past month:

Here are some posts that I loved reading this month:

How was your month of November? What was the best book you read? Did you do anything really fun or exciting? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Monthly Wrap-Up

OCTOBER 2017 | Wrap-Up

Hello! I hope you’re all having a lovely November day now that October has come and gone. Though I’m sad to see it go, I’m even more excited to welcome in the new month– November may be my favorite! The leaves are falling, the air is getting colder and crisper, and it’s time to talk about what I was up to during the month of October.

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In October I read a total of 3 books:

  1. Light in August: A Study in Black and White by Alwyn Berland
  2. George Eliot by Simon Dentith
  3. The Sun and Her Flowers by Rupi Kaur

I think this short list is kind of hilarious when compared to all of the snippets and chapters of books my nose has been stuck in over the past month for my course work. I do so much reading each week in order to research for the essays I have to write, but it’s rare that I actually read an entire book because usually it’s not all relevant to my essay topic. However, I’m really pleased that I was able to squeak in two full books… and one for FUN?!?!?!

The Sun and Her Flowers by Rupi Kaur is definitely the best book I read in October. I’ve been eagerly awaiting this second poetry collection from Rupi Kaur ever since I finished reading her first one, Milk and Honey. This collection has a similar vibe and the words are as raw, intense, emotional, genuine, and beautiful as ever. I would highly recommend it to anyone and everyone, even if you have never read her previous poetry collection.

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Someone once told me that after spending a certain amount of time in a new place, no matter how grand or new or different, it will eventually start to feel like less of a Place and more of simply a place. Now that I’ve lived here for a month and a half I’m starting to look at Oxford from a different perspective. It is the magnificent place of my year abroad, but it’s also just another city in which people live and work and go grocery shopping and commute and do the normal tasks we do every day. It’s actually refreshing to see the city this way because it feels more real and less like I’m walking around in a dream. There’s a shopping mall next to buildings that have been there for centuries and a cyclists that whizz by you on their way to and from work and people walking down the street in black formal gowns on a Tuesday night and somehow it’s all become my new sense of “normal.”

I’ve definitely felt myself settling in more during October. Not only did I join more extracurricular activities (I play football now, joined the Oxford Student Union, and was elected as the Visiting Student Representative for my college) but I also feel more connected to the people here. Sometimes it’s strange to think about the fact that after June I might never see some of these people again, but we’re all trying to just make the most of our time while we are here. Fortunately the matriculated students at my college are incredibly friendly and welcoming, so they definitely make it easier to feel a sense of belonging.

Tutorials have been interesting and great but still very different from the style of education that I’m used to back in the States. The food is delicious but I’m also craving a big homemade pumpkin pie. Everything is absolutely beautiful here and I’m convinced that I will never, ever get used to being surrounded by so much gorgeous architecture and scenery. Long story short: I feel very, very lucky.

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As I mentioned in my last monthly wrap-up, finding time to blog in my hectic schedule is a challenge. Every day I thank past Holly for having the foresight to schedule so many posts in advance! Though it might take me a while to respond to them, please know that I greatly appreciate every single comment left on my posts! ❤

Here are some notable posts from my blog this past month:

Here are some posts that I loved reading this month:

How was your month of October? What was the best book you read? Did you do anything really fun or exciting? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Monthly Wrap-Up

SEPTEMBER 2017 | Wrap-Up

September was a blur. I nearly had to do a double take when I looked at a calendar the other day and realized that it was nearly October. Between preparing for Oxford, moving to Oxford, and living at Oxford, it feels as though this entire month has been one transition right after another. It’s a relief to finally be settled in and feel more comfortable in this amazing place. Here’s what I was up to in September:

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In September I read a total of 5 books:

  1. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
  2. Absalom, Absalom! by William Faulkner
  3. As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner
  4. Intruder in the Dust by William Faulkner
  5. Stiletto by Daniel O’Malley

As I Lay Dying is my favorite book that I read in September. This was my second time reading it and even though I first read it last summer I was still taken aback by the striking ending. What a brilliantly crafted novel!

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It’s official: I’M AT OXFORD. September was a whirlwind of transitions: not only to a new country and culture, but also to new friends, assignments, and routines. Though living in England has certainly taken some getting used to, I’m happily settled in now and can’t wait for my tutorials to finally begin. I’ve experienced so many new things in the past few weeks that I hardly have time to discuss them all.

A major goal that I’ve recently crossed off of my bucket list is going to LONDON. What a city! It felt like a blend of Boston and New York City, with some areas being more open and calm and other being more crowded and bustling. I was lucky enough to be able to many sites in one day: Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey, Big Ben, the London Eye, the Tate Modern art gallery, and Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre. Though I had a blast visiting, I think it’s safe to say that I definitely prefer living in Oxford!

St. Paul’s Cathedral… almost too big to fit in one photo!

It’s absolutely incredible being able to live and study in a city that is as rich in history as Oxford. It still feels surreal when I walk into the Radcliffe Camera to casually study while everyone takes photos of it from behind the gate. I don’t think I’ll ever get used to that extraordinary feeling!

I’ve been really fortunate to have made some great friends here already and I can’t wait for all the other students to get here so I can meet even more people. It’s strange to think that the term hasn’t even officially started even though I’ve already done so much!

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Unfortunately, I haven’t had much time to blog since moving to Oxford. Though I’ve scheduled plenty of posts in advance for the next few months, less free time means less time to spend reading other posts, commenting on other blogs, and being active in the blogging community in general. Hopefully I’ll be able to work it into my schedule once I settle into a more regular routine.

Here are some notable posts from my blog this past month:

Here are some posts that I loved reading this month (there are so many!!):

How was your month of September? What was the best book you read? Did you do anything really fun or exciting? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Monthly Wrap-Up

AUGUST 2017 | Wrap-Up

August has always been one of my favorite months of the year. I love the feeling of transition that it brings, mostly because for the majority of my life it has meant starting an exciting new year of school. This year my academics are starting a little later (I’m coming, Oxford!) but August nevertheless brought a lot of change for me. Here’s what I was up to last month:

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In August I read a total of 10 books:

  1. The Turn of the Screw by Henry James
  2. The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
  3. Flipped by Wendelin Van Draanen
  4. Dracula by Bram Stoker
  5. Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
  6. Where Angels Fear to Tread by E.M. Forster
  7. The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
  8. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
  9. Light in August by William Faulkner
  10. The Portable Faulkner by William Faulkner, edited by Malcolm Cowley

As per usual, it’s difficult to choose a favorite book of the month because I was fortunate to have read many great ones. This month it’s a tie between Flipped and The Sound and the Fury because I love them both for different reasons.

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August mainly consisted of working, reading, and saying goodbye far too often. Many of my friends have left for their study abroad adventures or simply moved back to campus for the semester, which means that I’ve had to say goodbye to them before I leave for Oxford in a few weeks (eek!). Among the many farewells was one to my brother, a freshman at Wheaton this year. It’s so strange to be home while everyone is back at my favorite campus!

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Here are some notable posts from my blog this past month:

Here are some posts that I loved reading this month (there are so many!!):

How was your month of August? What was the best book you read? Did you do anything really fun or exciting? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Monthly Wrap-Up

JULY 2017 | Wrap-Up

July was a blur of hot days, air-conditioned office spaces, lakeside reading, and time spent with friends and family… not a bad way to spend the bulk of summer! Here’s what I was up to this past month:

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In July I read a total of 9 books:

  1. Hard Times by Charles Dickens
  2. North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell
  3. Middlemarch by George Eliot
  4. The Road by Cormac McCarthy
  5. George’s Marvelous Medicine by Roald Dahl
  6. Echo by Nadette Rae Rodgers
  7. Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbit
  8. The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins
  9. Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë

I honestly can’t believe I read so many books this past month, especially since many of them are LONG (I’m looking at you, Middlemarch). Picking a favorite is difficult, but I think the best book I read in July has to be Tuck Everlasting. This short little read was absolutely adorable, charming, and insightful. I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it! I never read it when I was younger but I wish I had– I feel like it’s something I would have loved.

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It happened, people: I finally visited Willa Cather’s grave!! This is something I’ve been wanting to do ever since I learned a few months ago that it’s located a little over an hour away from where I live. Willa Cather is one of my favorite authors, so standing at the foot of her grave was absolutely surreal. I went on a rather dreary day, but that didn’t stop me from enjoying every second of it. You can read more about my adventures in this graveyard here. 

My family and I were also able to spend a few days by the lake in July, which means I had plenty of reading time by the water. And who can pass up the opportunity to take some bookish photos in such a beautiful place? (Not me!)

The majority of July was spent trying to plow through my required reading for Oxford, finishing up paperwork for studying abroad, spending time with friends I haven’t seen in a while, and working. It’s strange to think that we’re already more than half way through summer… September will be here before we know it! Also, I started watching the TV series Fargo… is anyone else obsessed with this series?!?!?!

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This past week I also had the amazing opportunity to participate in the Booktube-A-Thon. As you can tell from my initial TBR post, I really wasn’t expecting to get through much reading in a single week. However, in twist that I never saw coming I was actually able to complete almost all of the challenges and read even more than what I had put on my TBR!! I’m so happy with the progress I made and I actually miss the Booktube-A-Thon already. There’s just such fantastic positive bookish energy during those intense seven days of reading! ❤

Here are some notable posts from my blog this past month:

Here are some posts that I loved reading this month (there are so many!!):

How was your month of July? What was the best book you read? Did you do anything really fun or exciting? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Read-A-Thons

Booktube-A-Thon 2017 Wrap-Up

It’s official: the Booktube-A-Thon has come to a close! It’s time to tally up page counts, reading challenges, and books read in this wrap-up of the week. At the beginning of the read-a-thon I posted my Booktube-A-Thon TBR with my goals for this reading adventure. Let’s see how I did!!

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George’s Marvelous Medicine by Roald Dahl

This book checks off so many challenges! Not only does it have a person on the cover, but I also read it in one sitting outside. Roald Dahl has done it again with yet another book I wish I had read when I was younger. (Although I probably would have been scarred by the abrupt and surprisingly harsh ending!)

Echo by Nadette Rae Rodgers

Fun fact: I also finished this book outside in one day AND it has a person on the cover… SO MANY CHALLENGES COMPLETED. I suppose this could also count as a book about someone different from me because I certainly can’t control my dreams like the protagonist of this suspenseful, engaging novel. I already can’t wait to read the third installment in this trilogy. Stay tuned for a full review soon!

Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbit

When one of my close friends learned that I never read this book when I was younger she immediately said that I had to read it NOW. Needless to say, this children’s classic was pretty hyped. I ADORED this book– I definitely wish I had read it when I was younger! Winnie is such a great protagonist and my heart simultaneously leapt and broke when I read the very last page. (Also: JESSIE <3)

The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins

I FINALLY finished this tome! It was definitely worth all 635 pages. This is assigned reading for my upcoming term on Victorian literature and so far it’s one of my favorite novels on the reading list. I’m not sure if it actually completes any challenges– maybe the one about characters being different from me– but I’m still so happy that I finished it!

Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë

This was my second time reading Wuthering Heights and I enjoyed it so much more than when I read it years ago. I’m glad this was on my assigned reading list for Oxford because I probably wouldn’t have reread it otherwise. Luckily, I can count this towards the challenge of reading a book I bought because of the cover– I ADORE Penguin English Library editions!! ❤

War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy

Though I’m only half way through this tome, I’m still calling it a success! I managed to read over three hundred pages this week, which isn’t too shabby. I’m enjoying this novel so much more than I initially thought I would. Not only is it easier to read than I first expected, but I’m connecting with the characters much more than I did while reading Dostoevsky’s The Idiot. I can’t wait to see where the second half of this novel goes!

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1 || Read a book with a person on the cover.
2 || Read a hyped book.
3 || Finish a book in one day.
4 || Read about a character that is very different from you.
5 || Finish a book completely outdoors.
6 || Read a book you bought because of the cover.
7 || Read seven books.

I’m honestly SHOCKED that I managed to complete so many challenges! I definitely didn’t expect to read seven books, but I also didn’t think I would complete more than three or four of the rest. I’m so pleased with these results!

Copy of June (1)

All in all, I feel as though I had an incredibly successful BookTubeAThon this year. I love this event because it’s easy to participate no matter how busy you are during that particular week. It pushed me to read some books that I’ve been meaning to get around to for a while, and it’s always fun seeing the community come together for a glorious week of reading. A huge thanks to Ariel Bissett for organizing yet another lovely BookTubeAThon!! ❤

 Did you participate in the Booktube-A-Thon? How did you do? What do you think of the books that I read? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY