Hello everyone and welcome back!! I can’t wrap my head around the fact that it’s officially the last day of January?? I honestly can’t understand how time works?? January was a pretty slow reading month for me, so I’m not planning to publish a separate monthly wrap-up, but I’m making it up to you today with two book tags I was tagged for an eternity ago. One is the Lost in Translation Tag, which Eryn @ Love_Your_Shelf — the original creator — tagged me for back in October. The other is the Baby It’s Cold Outside Book Tag, which I’m pretty sure I was supposed to do before the holidays, but…. we’re rolling with it 😂 After all, it’s still cold on the East Coast, and according to the forecast, we’re supposed to get lots of snow tomorrow! Thank you so much to Cherelle @ A Bolt Out of the Book and Nehal @ Books and Words for tagging me 😊
Onto the questions!
Lost in Translation Tag 🌎
As I mentioned in the intro, the Lost in Translation meme was created by Eryn, and it’s a super quick and super fun idea! Here are the rules:
- Pick the last book you read.
- Put that book in Google Translate and translate it into 3 different languages, then back to English. (Please put which languages you used to translate them!)
- See how close (or how far) it is to the original book title.
- Lastly, put the original book title at the bottom and talk about your last read!
Thank you so much for tagging me, Eryn! Eryn is such a sweet, lovely person, and everyone should definitely check out her blog, as she recently came back from hiatus! This meme is open for everyone to participate in — but don’t forget to tag Eryn as the creator 🙂
I translated the title of my last read into Lithuanian → Latin → Thai , and back into English, and this is what I got…
AHAHAHAHA UMMMMMM. Wow. I mean, I can see where this came from, but…. it’s still hilarious to see how badly Google Translate messed up 😂
The original title is…
Concrete Rose by Angie Thomas
WHOOP WHOOP the THUG prequel is here!!! And wow, let me just say that it is going to break all of your hearts. I’m convinced that Angie Thomas must have some kind of secret ingredient, because she somehow turns me into a leaky faucet basically during every single chapter. Her characters have so much life, I really don’t know how she does it. Our main character Maverick is fiery, flawed, and overall just fantastic. There are moments when he’s so overwhelmed and vulnerable but trying not to let it show and ughhh I just want to give him a hug. And the themes are amazing 😭 There was this one chapter where Mav disses Jefferson Davis and the entire concept of Columbus “discovering” the Americas and *chef’s kiss* was I living for that or what. Love him so much. And have I mentioned that Baby Seven is the absolute CUTEST?? Because he is. The absolute cutest. 😍
In conclusion, ASDFGHJKL;. It’s so good okay?? 100% worth your time. (Though I definitely wouldn’t recommend it to everyone… the trigger warnings are real here, and there is some content that not all readers might be comfortable with. I’ll go into the content warnings more detail on that soon, as I hope to write a review in the near future.)
But in the meantime, click here for the trigger warnings.
Gang life, cheating, depression (postpartum), gun violence, racism, imprisonment, murder & attempted murder, death of a close family member (on-page), grief & loss depiction, sex (fade-to-black), smoking & drug use, teen pregnancies, abortion (mentioned, considered), substance addiction, toxic masculinity (general theme, challenged)
Of course, no pressure if you’re not interested or if tags aren’t your thing!
Baby It’s Cold Outside Book Tag 🌨
Now it’s time to complete the Baby It’s Cold Outside tag!! Thank you again to Cherelle and Nehal for tagging me!! To everyone else: both Cherelle and Nehal have personalities that are larger than life, and they have the most wonderful blogs — you should all go check them out!
And thanks so much to Erin (blog linked below!) for coming up with this creative idea! 💜
- Thank the person who tagged you and link to their post.
- Display the banner (copy and paste).
- Link to the original creator: Erin @ Reading On A Star!
- Answer the questions!
- Tag however many people as you want!
⛄ Snow Day – What’s your “comfort” book?
I don’t reread my favorites often enough to call any of them “comfort books,” but the Legend trilogy is as close as it gets. It’s filled to the brim with early YA dystopian tropes — totalitarian government, all-important test you take as a teenager, love triangle/rectangle, you name it — but I adore it nonetheless. The angst! The romance! The sibling relationships! The commentary on social class! The ending of Prodigy! The ending of Champion! Everything about Rebel! Daniel “Day” Altan Wing! June Iparis! So good!
😇 Snow Angels – What’s a book that you love so much you would want to be buried with it (a little morbid, but…)?
Oh wow, this one is hard! Assuming that the Bible’s a given, I guess I’ll go with A Curse So Dark and Lonely?? Not only do I love this series with my entire heart, it’s also been a pivotal part of my blogging journey. I know I’ve mentioned before that I started my blog after discovering Cait @ Paper Fury, but searching up reviews for this book is how I stumbled on her site in the first place. Her review is hilarious and 100% accurate (linked here) and had me going through her entire archive of blog posts. Here’s her review for Book 2 as well, because why on earth not 😂
On that note, my copy of A Vow So Bold and Deadly arrived yesterday, and it. IS. GORGEOUS. I don’t take pictures of my books often (because my photography skills are nonexistent) but I made an exception for this series (please ignore the complete lack of aesthetic):
AREN’T THOSE COVERS SO GORGEOUS *starry eyes* 🤩😍
I’m planning to binge it on Monday, as I’m off from school…. I actually dreamed about this series a few nights ago, that’s how stressed I am about how it’s all going to go down. The obsession is real, folks. Also, #TeamGrey4Ever.
🧦 Warm Socks – What’s a book that makes you feel warm inside? (The fluffiest, cutest romance you’ve ever read?)
I debated between Tweet Cute and Jo & Laurie for this question, but I went with the one I’ve been less vocal about on the blog! Jo & Laurie is a spin-off of Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women in which the authors spin a romantic reimagining of the eponymous characters’ relationship. While Jo’s headstrong character made for a sometimes frustrating read, I was thoroughly entertained by her and Laurie’s camaraderie. And the will-they-won’t-they of their romance was the cherry on top! Even if you’re a fan of Jo and Laurie’s original ending, I would still highly recommend this book if you’re looking for something pleasant and delightful to read.
☕ Hot Cocoa – What winter-themed novels have you previously read?
I’m not much of a seasonal reader, so this puts me in a difficult spot! I do, however, currently have The Twelve Dates of Christmas by Jenny Bayliss on hold. I pressed the “place hold” button on a whim, purely because the blurb sounded cute and I’m in the mood for a proper friends-to-lovers. The Goodreads reviews seem to be rather mixed, though, so… we’ll see where this book takes me.
Other wintery books I’d like to read sometime include: Mr. Dickens and His Carol by Samantha Silva, The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden, & One Way or Another by Kara McDowell!
🛷 Sledding – What’s a book with the best plot twists? Who’s an author that always keeps you on your toes?
Hands down Sabaa Tahir. I don’t know how she does it, guys. Every time I think it can’t get any worse, it does. I do not understand this sorcery. Her Ember quartet is a great example of her plot-twisting skills. Now that the last book in that series has been released, I can’t wait to see what else she will come up with next!
On a related note, my hold for A Torch Against the Night finally arrived yesterday, and I’m loving my reread so far. Looking at Laia from the beginning of this book and comparing her to the one we left at the end of the last one, I’m once again mindblown about the scope of her character arc. Sabaa is a genius.
🧥 Ugly Sweaters – What’s a book with the ugliest cover?
Look, I respect and appreciate the work of all cover designers, but the cover of The Mad Scientist’s Daughter could really use a redo. I mean, what is that atrocity. I can’t even look at it without cringing. Fortunately, there’s a much more aesthetically pleasing edition of it available to order online. Thank goodness I don’t need to display *that* on my bookshelf.
Also, honorable mention to Phantom by Susan Kay. I’ve heard the best things about this backstory for The Phantom of the Opera, but I’m just not willing to spend money on a book with a cover like that. I just… can’t deal with it. I’ve looked up other editions, but they’re all antique and cost like over a hundred dollars on Amazon. It’s ludicrous — simply ludicrous. (Catch that POTO reference? 😉)
🎥 Movie Marathon – What’s the last book you binge read?
I usually take my time while reading, so most of the books I’ve read don’t apply for this question… but Vincent and Theo by Deborah Heiligman is one of the recent exceptions! I started this book at the beginning of December, didn’t have time for it for the next 30 days, and binged 70% of it on New Year’s Eve. There’s something about Heiligman’s writing style that kept me coming back for more. The top review on Goodreads complains about it being sentimental and naive, but as someone part of the target audience, I thought it was perfect for the subject matter. I think it’s safe to say that if all nonfiction were written like this, I’d switch over to that genre in a heartbeat.
🎅 Letter to Santa – What’s a book that’s on your wishlist this year?
I’m going to list two, because why not 😂
The Travelling Cat Chronicles by Hiro Arikawa is a definite priority! This book sounds like one of the sweetest and most heartwarming books to ever exist, and I need it in my life ASAP!! But ahh it also sounds like it’s one of those books that very subtly breaks your heart so that before you know it, you can barely make out the words on the page because of the tears running down your face. (And yes, this oddly specific thing has happened to me more than once.)
Another one is Memento by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff!! After finishing the Illuminae Files series in 2020, I was crestfallen when I learned that this novella from AIDAN’s POV had only been available if you pre-ordered Aurora Rising…. until it was released last October as an e-book!! I NEED this so badly — I’m prepared for my favorite morally gray antihero to break my heart all over again 🤩
Anybody who’s still suffering from cold weather!
That’s all for today, everyone! Thank you so much for reading ❤️ How about you? What’s the fluffiest romance you’ve ever read? The last book you binged? Any snow on the horizon for any of you? I’d love to chat in the comments! (And also, what do you think of the new dividers? Do you guys prefer the arrow I used in my other posts? Let me know what you think!)
Have a great day/night, everybody! Wishing you all a wonderful February 💖