#HamAlong – Post Six

We’re almost done! And I’m both happy and sad about that. Just two little sections left.

  • Admittedly, this section seemed less exciting than previous ones. Lots of John Adams being pissed off about various things.
  • Hamilton is b-r-o-k-e after being Secretary of Treasury, so he goes back to lawyering.
  • The treaty that John Jay orchestrated has everyone’s undies in a twist and Hamilton jumps into the fray, because of course he does. Adorably, Washington is very nice about asking Hamilton for his assistance pretty please.
  • Hamilton inserts himself into a heated political discussion and declares “that if the parties were to contend in a personal way, he was ready, that he would fight the whole party one by one.”

  • Luckily, that one didn’t go down like that. Though I’m sure it would’ve been hilarious.
  • Hamilton of course defends the Jay Treaty with his written words. And THIS IS MY FAVORITE THING:

“Hamilton was not content to write as Camillus alone. Two days after his second essay appeared, he began to publish, in the same paper, a parallel series as ‘Philo Camillus.’ For several weeks, Philo Camillus indulged in extravagant praise of Camillus and kept up a running attack on their Republican adversaries. The prolific Hamilton was now writing pseudonymous commentaries on his own pseudonymous essays.”

savor it


  • Jefferson is slandering Washington. Dicks are being dicks. Like everyone said last week, politics has not changed a bit in the last couple hundred years.
  • Baby Lafayette! chills with the Hamiltons for 6 months. Aww. And Chernow goes to great lengths to point out that Hamilton said the word “love” to Lafayette three times in one letter. Three, you guys, omg.
  • Washington steps down. In his future correspondence with Hamilton, including them working on his final address, you can totally feel the admiration they have for each other and it gives me a little feels.
  • Hamilton does what he can to avoid the risk of Jefferson becoming president, but that kind of pisses off Adams because it really looks like he was screwing him over. Hamilton is not great at learning his lesson. But Adams is a dick for always jumping right to Hamilton’s foreignness whenever he wants to talk shit about him.
  • Hamilton tears into Jefferson for many reasons, but including his absolutely bullshit views on slavery and race. I very much enjoyed that part. GTFO, Jefferson.

  • The Reynolds Pamphlet… I mean, what is there even to say.

Most of the last three chapters is just about how shitty Adams is. I have no idea if this is true, because I know as much about Adams as I did about Hamilton before the musical (nothing). Maybe one day I’ll get around to reading that McCullough biography… I think I have it. Maybe. I don’t feel like getting up to check. But my point is, I don’t know much about Adams but it does seem like kind of an ass. I’m aware that’s probably because Chernow is the least objective ever when it comes to anyone who disagreed with Hamilton, but still.


Questions of the bookish variety

Trish at Love, Laughter, and a Touch of Insanity posted this little gem and I said to myself “Sarah, you know what you haven’t done in a while? A survey thingy.” So here we are. Thanks Trish!

1. What is your favorite fictional food or drink?

I’m going to guess some random bread and stew from the Outlander books. Mmmmmmm, stew.

2. How long did it take you to finish your last book?

TWO WEEKS. And it wasn’t even 300 pages. In my defense though, I’m also doing the #HamAlong and reading roughly 100 pages per week of Alexander Hamilton takes up a surprising amount of time.


3. How many times do you stare at your books or bookshelves each day?

Few times a week, at least. Slightly less since I moved one of my bookshelves into the storage room I use as a closet area.

4. How many Goodreads friends and books do you have?

No idea, haven’t been on in a while. I just can’t get back into it.

5. Do you ever quote books in public?

Almost never. I think the ones that probably come up the most are Lamb by Christopher Moore and Bet Me by Jennifer Crusie, because those my friends have read and are familiar enough for me to quote and them actually understand what I’m saying.


6. Do you ever re-read books?

Yup. I kind of alternate re-reading the Outlander series and the Harry Potter series. I’d like to re-read the Tales of the Ketty Jay series sometime soon.

7. Do you judge a book by its cover?

8. Instagram, Twitter or Tumblr?

I’m on all three – Twitter and Instagram are my fave. Tumblr seems to complicated to use well on the phone app, so I only go on it once and while to search for gifs.

9. Which genres take you the longest to read?

Like Trish, classics and non-fiction. That brain power, man.

10. Who are your favourite BookTubers (or Book Bloggers)?

I have a tab for this.


11. How often do you pre-order books?

Hardly ever, because I don’t get the point. There is rarely a book being released, that I want, that is going to sell out.

12. Are you a shopaholic?

I enjoy it, but not at the insanely stupid level of that girl in that series. Ugh, that was a frustrating book.

13. How many times have you re-read your favourite book?

Uhhhh… 6? 7?


14. Do you own a lot of books?

I don’t even know anymore. I KNOW it’s below 800, because I’ve purged a whole bunch. I’m gonna guess around 500? (So sad, I used to have about 1000.)

15. Do you take pictures of your books before you read them?


16. Do you read every day?

I wish.


17. How do you choose a new book?

Hmm. I don’t know. Sometimes for readalong purposes, sometimes just for whatever I’m in the mood for.

18. Do you always have a book with you?

Yeah, either of the print or e-book or audiobook variety.

19. What are your biggest distractions from reading?

Work, duh. But also Borderlands 2 because it’s the best.


20. What is your favorite place to buy books?

Hmmm… I guess Barnes and Noble. It’s the only physical bookstore in my area, really. I’m super jealous that my sister lives only a ferry-ride and subway-ride away from The Strand, because then that would totally be it. I was in there for two hours the first time I went.

And now that I mentioned Borderlands, I think I’m gonna go play it. Because the honeyman is asleep and it’s Sunday afternoon and I still haven’t showered, so why not.


#HamAlong – Post Five

Alrighty. Back on schedule (mostly).

  • Jefferson is as big of a worm as Burr. He wrangles a man into his employment and makes him write his Jeffersonian bullshit attacking A. Ham. Ugh. And also, he’s trying to turn Washington against Hamilton, but Washington is too smart for that shit.
  • And despite Washington basically begging Hamilton and Jefferson to just chill, Hamilton JUST CANNOT help himself. It’s amazing and kind of hilarious to watch.

  • Monroe, Muhlenberg, and Venable decide to let Hamilton know what they know, and were surprised and embarrassed to get an earful of his confessions of sexy-times with Maria Reynolds. Dude does not know how to keep his cool.
  • A. Ham decides that he wants to retire sometime soon and basically demands more investigations into himself, to make sure everyone knows he hasn’t done a damn thing wrong (besides, you know, cheat on his wife).
  • WTF is this Chernow? –>  “…Maria Reynolds was now prepared to tell everything she knew about her former husband’s relations with Hamilton – as if the loose-tongued Maria had ever muzzled herself before.

  • The French Revolution starts really happening, and poor Lafayette :(  Hamilton was wrong, he wasn’t fine. I mean, he lives obviously, but he’s not exactly thriving.
  • Hamilton writes his Pacificus essays to talk about why we should remain neutral. I really wish that politicians still did shit like that, that they still wrote series of well-thought out essays defending their position on issues. Instead of just what we have now… generalized stances of things but constantly dodging answering direct complex questions.
  • Jefferson wants Madison to write his own stuff to combat the Pacificus essays, and Madison is like “Yeah, I mean I would, but see I have all these people over and it’s really hot here, so maybe later.”
  • Jefferson is basically attacking Washington in his sketchy newspaper, but for some fucking reason Washington talks him out of resigning.
  • The Whiskey Rebellion happens…

  • Hamilton resigns and Washington emotes a little bit about that, which is adorable.
  • Chernow does a nice little summary of all the shit Hamilton managed to accomplish by the time he was 40, and it is just bananas.

I admit that I kind of flew through these chapters and actually did finish Thursday night, but I might have paid slightly less attention because I was hurrying. I don’t have a whole lot to say on this section, except I want to slap Chernow a bit, man Jefferson was a dickhole, and I’m kinda sad now about Hamilton coming off the $10. I want ladies and POC on the money, but maybe we can change the other bills instead? Please?







#HamAlong – Post Four (and oops it’s so late)

FINALLY. I don’t know how I got so behind… but here’s my post for CH. 15-19. It’s going to be on the short side so I can go right back to reading and maybe have a hope of posting on time for tomorrow.

  • “The whole statistical basis of government took shape under his command.”

  • I love that Hamilton basically looked at all of the things that Britain did and wanted to steal those methods for America. His point that when it came to needed guns/ammo/supplies to fight a war, we relied heavily on foreigner manufacturers was a VERY VALID POINT, SO SHUT UP JEFFERSON.
  • Found the part about whether people would get money if they were issued IOU’s during wartime but sold them super interesting. And yeah, I agree with Hamilton’s decision there.
  • Ham proposes the nation’s first real luxury taxes.
  • Sad that it’s Madison vs. Hamilton time.
  • Hamilton writes a report on basically every subject and I love this. I love that he takes an issue and just dissects the crap out of it.

write write write

  • I wonder how our country would have turned out if Hamilton and others in the 1700’s hadn’t agreed to conveniently “shelve the slavery issue”. I’d love to see that alternate universe.
  • Jefferson sounds like a wang with no sense of self-awareness. Good job, Lin-Manuel Miranda – spot on portrayal.

  • Cabinet Battle #1 and The Room Where It Happens happen. Fun stuff.
  • The part on paper money led to a very long, weird discussion between the honeyman and I about having a financial system that is/is not backed by precious metals (the gold standard).
  • Getting really sick of Chernow’s shitty way that he talks about women. (check the #HamAlong on twitter)
  • The section on Maria Reynolds wasn’t nearly as exciting as I was expecting it to be. Say No To This does a good job of that, I suppose. Since Chernow can’t seem to make up his mind and probably no one really knows, I’m going to think of her as a smooth con woman who was working with her husband to screw Hamilton over. I don’t think she saw Hamilton as “godlike”. (MAJOR SIDE-EYE, CHERNOW. MAJOR SIDE-EYE.)
  • Aaaand then the rest of this seems to be how Hamilton has a knack for steadying the market and how he gets REALLY into manufacturing.

Okay, back to the book!


February Monthly TBR


I didn’t read as much as I wanted to in January. I mean, I kind of did because I read about half of damn Alexander Hamilton plus three other books, but still. And I’m SO behind in my comic reading, it’s a shame.

But then I said to myself: “So create an even BIGGER pile for February!” Logical, I am not. But who knows.


From the top…

  • Dragonfly in Amber by Diana Gabaldon – Already 25% through this, continuing with my Outlander series re-read.
  • Destiny’s Captive by Beverly Jenkins – Romance, because you know, February / Valentine’s Day. And I think the heroine in this one is a pirate or something, so fun stuff.
  • The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz – I’ve never read Junot Diaz, but he’s a popular author and I’ve had this book for a long time now.
  • Jazz by Toni Morrison – Honestly, my attention span and general inclination at the moment for some lighter reading means this may not happen this month. But I like to be optimistic.
  • Lafayette in the Somewhat United States by Sarah Vowell – LAFAYETTE! ‘Nuff said.
  • Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow – And this shall be the month we finish off the #HamAlong, which has been delightful. I get the sense that Chernow is a bit of a sexist, and he’s way too much of a Hamilton fanboy, but this might actually end up on my best-of list at the end of the year. I’m sure reading it after loving the Hamilton musical makes it seem much more fun and lively than if I had read it before, but whatever.
  • Ultimate Comics: Spider-Man Volume 2 – More Miles Morales!
  • Fables Volume 8-10 – MOOARRR FABLES!!

There’s no way this is all gonna happen, but I’ll give it a shot. What are you excited to read this month?


#HamAlong – Post Three


  • Balthazar de Haert is almost a great as name as Hercules Mulligan.
  • I had some major feels for Burr in this section. I mean, he’s definitely a worm. BUT, him and wife Theodosia (whose husband conveniently died in Jamaica) have dinner parties with Hamilton and Eliza and man I wish I was a fly on those walls back then.
  • And POOR BURR. A bunch of family dies before he’s even 2 years old. And he feels all burdened by their legacy.

  • It’s shit like this that I REALLY don’t appreciate from Chernow–> “Alexander and Eliza produced eight children in a twenty-year span. As a result, Eliza was either pregnant or consumed with child rearing throughout their marriage, which may have encouraged Hamilton’s womanizing.”  This is exactly the kind of speculating I really hate in biographies. You’re a historian Chernow, not a fucking psychologist. That extra “might have encouraged his womanizing” line is absolute bullshit.
  • Hamilton’s brother only writes when he wants money. Also feeling some sads for Hamilton.
  • We see a little bit of Hamilton’s abolitionist views here, so that’s nice. I still don’t like that Chernow makes him seem like it was something that Hamilton felt passionately about and worked hard for. By this point it seems obvious that he disagreed with slavery and would like to see it eradicated, but he doesn’t seem to attack slavery with nearly as much gusto as he does basically any other issue he finds important (so far).
  • The New York Manumission Society sounds like a joke. The members couldn’t even agree to get rid of their own slaves by a certain date. GTFO.


  • I think we can all agree that Governor George Clinton sounds like he was a major ass hat.
  • On pg 275 it says that at Clinton rallies, Hamilton’s essays were hurled under the tables as marks of contempt, and the image of people sitting around just angrily throwing papers under the table cracks me up.
  • The story of the Constitutional Conventions and getting the Constitution ratified was crazy fascinating – way more interesting than I remember it being in school. I don’t have much to comment on specifically, other than it’s nuts that Hamilton works his ass off on getting The Federalist Papers written and published, and then spends six weeks speaking on and debating the Constitution in NY trying to get his own state to accept it.


  • I really want to read The Federalist Papers. I have my own copy, but I probably won’t get to it until later because damn this book takes up a lot of time already.
  •  John Adams really needed to get over himself. Anything less than being Vice President would be “beneath you”? And then almost declined it because you got less votes than you wanted?

  • I’m very happy to see Washington and Hamilton being all friendly again. :)
  • I love that the BIG QUESTIONS after the election of the first President were like “what do we call him” and “how should we all dress” and “what the hell how do we even do this thing”.
  • Hamilton and Angelica were WAY too flirty. Like, Eliza totally should’ve broken his kneecaps for saying some of the shit he said to her sister. Buuuuut I guess they were just all happy and super fond of each other so it wasn’t weird? Though apparently seemed so weird to others that they assumed Hamilton and Angelica were a thing? I’m so confused.
  • Hamilton has pissed off some new people – Aedanus Burke and Robert R. Livingston – and I can’t wait to see how that comes back around later. Poor Hamilton, never knew when to TALK LESS, SMILE MORE. (pun intended but seriously)
  • So now Jefferson Secretary of State and Hamilton is Secretary of the Treasury and OMG I’M SO EXCITED for all the drama that’s still ahead of us.


#24in48 readathon check-in

I think it’s something like 21 hours into the readathon, officially. But I didn’t even get to start reading until like 10 am this morning, and then I took a nap, so I’ve only read for I think 5 hours today.

BUT it’s 9 pm and I’m pretty sure I can at least read through the midway point (midnight).

  • Books read: 1 (Midnight Taxi Tango by Daniel Jose Older)
  • Pages read: 319
  • Foods eaten: Gummy bears, crackers with cheese and grapes, and chicken taco chili with tortilla chips
  • Next book: Probably start on the next #HamAlong section in Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow

And I know I’m HOURS late, but I’m going to go ahead and do the update survey:

  1. Where in the world are you reading from this weekend? NY.
  2. Have you done the 24in48 readathon before? I can’t remember… I think maybe?
  3. Where did you hear about the readathon? Pretty sure it was on Twitter. 
  4. What book are you most excited about reading this weekend? Alexander Hamilton (ch 10-14) because Hamilton’s life is just bonkers and OMG the musical it’s playing in my head all the time.
  5. Tell us something about yourself. I think I’m going to go get a new tattoo soon… either an Outlander tattoo or a Borderlands tattoo. Or both. Oh and I’ve been married for 8 days now, which is pretty awesome.
  6. Remind us where to find you online this weekend. Mainly Instagram and Twitter. I’m SarahSaysRead on basically everything.

Alright, back to reading!


#24in48 readathon

Maaaan, I am really looking forward to this 24 in 48 readathon! I really need a weekend of basically nothing but reading and cuddles with my kitty. I’d like to fit in a trip to the gym each day, and I really should make a run to the library because I have a very overdue book to return… we’ll see how that goes.


I already have grocery shopping out of the way, so that’s good. I’m making Skinnytaste Chicken Taco Chili in the crockpot, so that covers dinner. During the day I’ll probably just snack here and there – salad, hardboiled eggs, gummy bears, crackers, popcorn, clementines, etc. Maybe the honeyman will be nice enough to grab us fresh bagels for breakfast :)


I kind of have a lot of books in the air right now…

24in48 readathon

  • Midnight Taxi Tango by Daniel Jose Older – I want to just sit down and read the entire thing.
  • Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow – Chapters 10-14 for the #HamAlong
  • The Fishermen by Chigozie Obioma – Be nice to start this, maybe read the whole thing.
  • Logicomix by Apostolos Doxiadis and Christos Papadimitriou – Because graphic novels are perfect for readathoning. I have a nice stack of single issue comics to catch up on too.
  • Headstrong: 52 Women Who Changed Science – and the World by Rachel Swaby – I’d like to fit in a few chapters. They’re super short.
  • Dragonfly in Amber by Diana Gabaldon – Because I’m re-reading the Outlander series and I have them all on Kindle (in addition to print) and that is really handy for in-bed reading.

So I think I’m probably aiming for at least 800 pages or so. Should be possible, right? Right.

I’ll try to do update posts once in a while, but not many cause I’m focusing on the reading. I’ll be all over Instagram and Twitter though – @SarahSaysRead.

Happy readathoning!


#HamAlong – Post Two

You guyyyys this book is bananas. As was Hamilton’s life. And Chernow totally has an abnormal fondness for Hamilton, and it’s kind of cute. He talks about how touching it is to think of Hamilton lugging books and journals around during war, and it’s just cute. This section mainly focuses on the war and him marrying Eliza. I feel like there was a lot to mention, so I’m going to jump to some bullet points.

  • Sunstroke at the battle of Monmouth basically wrecked Burr for the rest of the war? Sunstroke? That happened in June 1778. The war didn’t end until 1983.

  • I love that Hamilton and various other scholarly dudes basically had anonymous screen names with which to publish their opinions to the world. Publius would have definitely been his Twitter handle. Man, he would’ve loved the digital age.
  • We get more evidence of Laurens’ abolitionism, not any of of Hamilton’s yet.
  • “People would assume that Hamilton, as an ‘outsider’ or ‘foreigner,’ could not possibly be motivated by patriotic impulses.” People still think this of immigrants today. America, how do we still have this problem? How have you made it this far with this kind of attitude? (Because immigrants get the job done, I guess, even with assholes doubting them.)
  • “Parts of his letter were sophomoric, with Hamilton making bawdy references to the size of his nose – jocular eighteenth-century shorthand for his penis – ”  NICE, HAMILTON.

  • On page 127, in his WifeList (as Alice so perfectly termed it) he states that no matter what politics a woman has it doesn’t matter because he’ll just convince to her to change her opinions to match his. See, this is where you should kind of point out Hamilton’s dickish moments, Chernow.
  • Eliza! She’s pretty great. And Ben Franklin taught her backgammon.
  • Burr & Theodosia <3
  • Hamilton gets a little jealous and emo over a guy being executed for treason. Bro. Your lust for glory and accomplishment was a bit much at times.
  • Peggy has an awesome moment of bad-assery, lying through her teeth to intruders so she can save her baby sister. And she gets a tomahawk thrown at her head. I know that’s kind of just legend, but I’m going with it. Good job, Peggy.
  • Page 164 – Hamilton tries to use a large fellow as a human shield. #HamiltonsDickishMoments
  • Fuck Cornwallis, who decided to infect black people with smallpox and send them into Rebel camps.
  • Hamilton hilariously talks about how his baby son’s legs are not as slim as his father’s. You guys and your legs.
  • I kind of love that Hamilton defends Tories after the war. He seemed to have steered clear of that mob desire to just absolutely destroy anyone in opposition.
  • Laurens :(

  • I’m confused, because it seems like Madison was kind of friends with Hamilton and was totally all for a centralized authority that could force states to pay their taxes? But in the musical (at least from the recording) it sounds like he hated Hamilton from day one. So now I’m really curious to see how their relationship develops.
  • Yay for Washington for personally paying a visit to Hercules Mulligan, to erase any doubts of his awesomeness.

Alright, so now we’re at the point where Hamilton is 28. The same age I am now. He’s fought in a war, got married, had a baby, published some essays, become a lawyer, created a manual for future lawyers to use, and started pushing for the formation of the Constitutional Convention, a peacetime army, a national bank.



Despite the times in which he’s kind of a wang, he is turning out to be pretty awesome. I mean, everyone has their wang-ish moments.


Got Married



I know I practically flooded Instagram with wedding pics last Friday, buuuuut I wanted to post some here too. Just because. #sorrynotsorry. I mean, just look at how pretty and fluffy my skirt came out! SO FLUFFY.

But yay, honeyman is now honeyhusband! Except that sounds horrible, so he’ll probably continue to be honeyman or Treland. It was a fun day – after the ceremony at city hall, we went home and ate pizza and took a nap before getting ready for the reception. We were actually a couple minutes late to that because there was an almost crisis with the music on the MP3 player, but luckily that sorted itself out. PHEW. And my sister was a huge help in basically all things wedding-related. (Thank you Heather!!)

Overall, it was a great time and I’m so glad we didn’t do a giant blow-out wedding. We honeymooned in the Poconos for a couple days, and now we’re home and back to work :) I’m still waiting for people to email or text me pictures from that day, mainly the reception, so there might be more pics on Instagram later… fair warning.