halloween

Sarah Sunday kind of

Hey kittens. I feel like posting! So weird.

Reading: Well I just finished N.K. Jemisin’s amazing Broken Earth trilogy last night and I’m gonna need a day or two before I can get into another novel because my brain is still in it. So right now I’m just in the beginning of We Were Eight Years in Power by Ta-Nehisi Coates (NetGalley arc, woohoo).

Watching: LOLOLOL I haven’t really watched anything in ages. The last thing I watched was The Addams Family movies last week, and okay yeah I forgot how awesome that first one is. Morticia and Gomez foreverrrrrr.

Image result for morticia and gomez

Image result for morticia and gomez

Listening: Just regular old music. We’re down a car again (honeyman’s vehicle just keeps on breaking) and it’s just harder to listen to podcasts and audiobooks on my commute if I’m not alone.

Eating: Coffee and a donut. #notgreatlifechoicesbutohwell

Thinking: I can’t believe Beyonce’s only 36.

Citizening: Planning to call my reps today about this DACA bullshit.

Anticipating: Reading. I’m in the mood right now to just really dig into all of my books. I’m doing a TBR Bingo thing on Litsy and I want to start crossing some books off! I’m hoping to break at least 70 books by the end of the year, and I want to hit a certain number of audiobooks… I know numbers are arbitrary, but whatever. I miss the times when I could read 100 books in a year.

Also, I bought some fall/autumn/Halloween stuff over the weekend so pretty psyched to decorate a bit too.

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Exercising: I went to the gym like 2 weeks ago! And then my family came to town and I haven’t gone again, but my knee didn’t do too awful. I did the elliptical and it was fine, except I had to REALLY pay attention while I was doing it because every now and then I’d step or something in a weird way and jolt it in a painful kind of manner…. ugh. I want to go at LEAST once this week. I can manage that, surely? Just ONCE Sarah, come on.

 

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October Monthly TBR

September and I got on pretty well, at least on the reading front. I finished 7 books and 23 comics (technically I’ve read more comics than that, because I’m re-reading The Walking Dead: Compendium 1, but I’m not going to add it to my spreadsheet until I finish it). And I’ve really liked a lot of the stuff I’ve read! Good month.

Andi at Estella’s Revenge is hosting a #15in31 challenge in October, and I’m crazy enough to have signed up. There isn’t a single month so far this year where the number of books I’ve read has been in the double digits, so I’ll consider it a success if I manage 10 and an uber-success if I manage a whole 15. Dewey’s 24-Hour Readathon is October, 17th, so hopefully that’ll give me a nice boost.

Anyways, here are my mega TBR piles! I’m trying to focus on digital reading this month, because man it’s out of control.

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On the Kindle:

  • Please Do Not Taunt the Octopus by Mira Grant – A kinda new Newsflesh novella. Totally saving this for the readathon.
  • Radiance of Tomorrow by Ishmael Beah – Had this on my Kindle for a literal age now, and I’m finally gonna read it! It’ll satisfy one of the categories for Book Riot’s Read Harder challenge anyways.
  • Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte – I wanna re-read this just cause it’s that time of year. The e-book was like a dollar and the Audible narration with it was three bucks I think, so I might listen to it on audio. (Back-up plan – re-watch the movie with Tom Hardy. Won’t count as a book read, but still.)
  • The Engagements by J. Courtney Sullivan – Why does the Kindle version have this ugly color instead of the normal pretty blue one with a big ring on it? Anyways, I’ve heard fabulous things and got this on a good sale a while back.
  • When Beauty Tamed the Beast by Eloisa James – Giving this a shot, to fulfill the “fairy tale retelling” category for the RH challenge. Happy that Overdrive had it.
  • Cybersexism by Laurie Penny – One of those $1.99 short ebooks, I’ll probably save it for the readathon. Penny is a feminist writer that I follow on Twitter and a while back I saw some vicious, horrible, sexist tweets to her that were INFURIATING. I haven’t actually read any of her books yet, so hoping this will be a good intro to her published work.
  • Binti by Nnedi Okorafor – This novella just came out, excited to read it but will probably hoard it for the readathon (seeing a pattern here?)
  • Cujo by Stephen King – Because Halloween season, and I need to read more King.
  • More Than Human by Ramez Naam – A book about the future biological enhancements and stuff. I like Naam, and have had this idling for a while. And I desperately needed some non-fiction here.

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On my physical to-read shelves:

  • Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie – Because I loooved Americanah by this author and really want to explore her backlist.
  • Season to Taste by Natalie Young – Seemed seasonally appropriate as it’s about a woman who kills and cooks her husband. A little bit of murder and comfort foods!
  • The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith (J.K. Rowling) – This is the second Cormoran Strike book. I really liked the first, and the third comes out later this month, so I should probably dive in already. I was holding out to see if the ebook would become available on Overdrive, but no such luck, so I guess I’ll read the hardcover copy THAT I ALREADY HAVE. (I am ridiculous.)

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On Scribd:

  • Edward Scissorhand comics – I added these to my list when I first got Scribd, so I’m gonna finally read em. Also, seasonally appropriate.
  • A Leaf On the Wind of All Hallows by Diana Gabaldon – I’ve read this short story before, but it’s on audio so I may just listen to it again. I miss Outlander.
  • Black Cool: One Thousand Streams of Blackness by Rebecca Walker – A group of essays about black culture. There is probably a more in depth way to describe it but I haven’t read it yet, but that seems to be the basis.
  • Zoo City by Lauren Beukes – I’ve heard fabulous things about Beukes’ other novels, but this one was available on Scribd so that’s the one I’m starting with. Something about a girl in South Africa who writes scam emails to make a living but then gets hired to find a missing person because she has a supernatural gift for finding things? Whatever, I’m in.
  • Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi – This is the sequel to Shatter Me, which I just read this month. It’s a YA novel about a girl who is basically Rogue from the X-Men, but it was interesting, and definitely a quick read.
  • Destroy Me by Tahereh Mafi – An even quicker read, as this is a novella told from the POV of a bad guy. Fun!

Holy shit that was a lot of books. And clearly my TBR piles are always subject to change – I’ll probably ditch a few and pick up some other random stuff (I mean, I think there’s a new Rainbow Rowell out this month too, so…)

What are you looking to read this month?

~Sarah

Sarah Sunday

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Happy Sunday morning! My brain is doing that thing where it’s not really great at forming complete thoughts, so bullet points shall be used. And I was going to try to write some reviews this morning… LOL.

  • I worked about 53 hrs last week, which isn’t horrible. But I’m tired, and had no time for blogging or the internet in general, really. I always want to hug the internet when I get time to come back and catch up on blogging. This week will probably be much of the same, since I have a literal crap ton of stuff to do AND will be training yet another new person. Hooray.
  • I went with the honeyman and my older sister last night to see John Wick. So, it was a pretty good movie – in theory, I actually really like what the movie ends up being about. But I can’t even give you the most critical detail because it would be spoilers. It was SUPER depressing. But basically, I like John Wick. Go him. (And this is coming from someone who usually can’t stand Keanu Reeves.)
  • Also, Horns is out now, (based on the book by Joe Hill), but literally NONE of the movie theaters in a 50-mile radius from me are playing it. I think the closest was 80 miles away. What the fuck.
  • Speaking of Horns, which Daniel Radcliffe is in, Daniel Radcliffe did this:

What’s great is that I already loved that Blackalicious song, and Radcliffe did a decent job. And it’s super weird to see Harry Potter rapping.

  • Oh, Halloween was this weekend! So we stopped by the honeyman’s mom’s house for a bit to say hi and eat some pizza, and then we went over our friend’s house. We met another couple that they are friends with and I actually liked them (this is a rare thing, since I’m generally a brat and anti-social), and we all drank, and did some shots, and played Cards Against Humanity until I was so tired we had to go home. It was a good night. And no, I didn’t dress up. I didn’t have the energy for it. But this year I really want to get a cheap inflatable life jacket, draw planets/stars/comets on it, and go next Halloween as cosmic inflation.
  • I had lunch with my little sister this weekend (up there in the green jacket thing) because she’s moving out of town. Only like an hour away, but it’s sad. I’ll miss being able to see her and Devil Baby without making it a day trip kind of thing.
  • I finished listening to Think Like a Freak by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner this week, and it was super interesting. I’ll try to review it today… hopefully. It made me want to go back and read Superfreakonomics, which for some reason I had never got around to.
  • I want to record a vlog (because I think that’s the only way I’m going to be able to do a review for Locke & Key, which is fantastic but I am SUCKING at trying to write a review), but our computer is like 5 years old and the camera on it is SO bad. I really hope we can get a new laptop soon.
  • I’ve been listening to The Heavy a lot this week. The House That Dirt Built is like my go-to CD right now. It’s kind of perfect for autumn weather, I think.

Ok, I think that’s all the rambling I have in me. I have laundry to do, a niece and nephew to go baby-sit, reviews to write, books to read… I need a vacation.

How is everyone else’s weekend going?

~Sarah

Horrorstor by Grady Hendrix

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I’ve never been to an Ikea. I always kind of wanted to go to one, if they ever expanded and came to my area. But now… I don’t know.

Horrostor is a fun, gimmicky horror-esque novel. Basically, employees work in this Ikea-like store called Orsk somewhere in Ohio and they start noticing damage occurring overnight while the store is closed- broken dishes, knocked over furniture, defiled sofas, etc. The store manager selects two other people to pull an overnight shift with him in order to catch the vandals. But the vandals might not be human. Dun dun DUNNNNNNN.

As far as Halloween-reading goes, this was a good pick. It’s quick, it’s entertaining, and it’s creepy as all hell. The actual book is laid out kind of like a store catalog, which is just fun and quirky. I mean, I don’t really have anything to other than that it was a fun read, so if you’re still looking for a Halloween book to fit in this week – here you go.

 

 

Also, I pictured Basil, the store manager, as Moss from The I.T. Crowd. I don’t know why, but it possibly made it even more fun. I like Moss.

 

Sarah Says: 3.5 stars

R.eaders I.mbibing P.eril IX – Yeah, I’m doing RIP again.

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Reading Laura’s post reminded me – It’s RIP time! Carl at Stainless Steel Droppings give us all an excuse to read those horror/mystery/thriller/dark fantasy books that we’ve been meaning to get to. It runs from now until October 31st. My lack of reading time is a concern, so I’m going to aim for Peril the Second, which means I’m going to aim to read two books. If I read more than that, then hooray for me.

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My possible reads (some pictured here, some not):

  • Misery by Stephen King – I was planning to read this in September anyways.
  • Red Planet Blues by Robert J. Sawyer – It’s a detective story that takes place on Mars. Win.
  • Frankenstein by Mary Shelley – Because I STILL have not read this, and hey wouldn’t it be nice to finally make some progress on that Classics Club list? Yes it would be.
  • Bag of Bones by Stephen King – Another King novel I’ve heard great things about and should really finally get to. I believe it was on my pile last year, but I never started it.
  • Locke & Key comics by Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez
  • Heart-Shaped Box by Joe Hill
  • random Joe Hill novellas / short stories I have on my Kindle (are we seeing a pattern here?)
  • The Walking Dead comics by Robert Kirkman and Tony Moore
  • Kill City Blues by Richard Kadrey (part of the Sandman Slim series, I really need to catch up on it)

Well, I’m going to try! We’ll see what I can fit in. This along with some pumpkin lattes should get me in the mood for autumn 🙂 Are you signed up?

Any other creepy books or comics I should try out?

~Sarah

R.I.P. VIII Wrap-Up

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Happy Halloween peoples! Since it’s the last day of the R.I.P. VIII Challenge, I figured I’d do a quick wrap-up post.

I was aiming for Peril the First (4 books), and I managed to read:

So I managed! Horns wasn’t on my original list, but I’m still counting it since it was a good dark, supernatural story. Beloved scared me in the beginning, and then it became disturbing and sad. Stiff was interesting – I learned a lot about how we use dead bodies. Miss Peregrine’s was really dark and creepy, especially with the freaky photographs in it. I’m also about 160 pages into The Woman in White, which was on my original list but I haven’t finished yet. I’ve been reading it slowly this month, I’ll probably finish it in November.

Where I failed was in actually socializing for RIP. I totally forgot that there was a review site for people participating, and I generally didn’t blog hop much at all. I feel bad about this… but it seems like I haven’t had as much spare time as I usually do for blogging and reading, so things have just been crazy. I’m barely keeping up with reading the blogs I already follow, much less expanding to new-to-me bloggers. Sorry ya’ll :-/

Anyways, I look forward to doing this again next year, with scarier books, some scary movies, and generally getting into the RIP mix a bit more.

And in the spirit of Halloween, I give you the newest Epic Rap Battle of History – Blackbeard vs. Al Capone (there’s even a reference to Halloween)

I think Al Capone won that one, sadly. I always cheer for the pirates.

~Sarah

Top Ten Tuesday: Scary Book Covers

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It’s Tuesday! And it’s almost Halloween! Which means it’s time for the Halloween-themed topic for Top Ten Tuesday (hosted by The Broke and The Bookish). This is my FOURTH YEAR participating in this Top Ten Tuesday topic. That is insane. Do you know how hard it is to avoid repeats?

Luckily, the topic this year is a little different – Top Ten Scariest Looking Book Covers. But unfortunately, I’m not going to have anywhere near 10 books for this list. Also, I am seriously short on time right now. So let’s get to the few I do have.

miss peregrine's home for peculiar children

1. Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs – Thank you, Mr. Riggs, for coming out with a novel full of super bizarre and unsettling pictures just like the one on the cover.

Night of the Living Dummy

2. Night of the Living Dummies by R.L. Stine – You guys know I have a huge fear of small creatures/people, right? Killer dolls, dummies, gnomes, midgets, children, etc. I have a feeling that stems from reading these creepy ass books as a child. Cover still gives me the shivers.

 

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3. Scary Stories books by Alvin Schwartz – Dude, screw these books. Way too scary. And illustrator Stephen Gammell did way too good of a job with the creepy drawings.

 

AND THAT’S IT. I know, I suck. I’m positive there have been times when I’ve seen creepy or scary covers in bookstores and walked away… but I can’t remember any. Well then. What’s on your lists? Show me (tell me?) some scary covers!

 

~Sarah

You Suck: A Love Story by Christopher Moore

You Suck by Christopher Moore

 

“She knew it should bother her more, being evil and all, but after she put on a little mascara and some lipstick and poured herself another cup of blood-laced coffee, she found that she was okay with it.”

**Just a reminder here guys – You Suck is the sequel to Bloodsucking Fiends, so if you haven’t read it yet, there are some spoilers for the first book. **

Tommy Flood wakes up to find that he’s a vampire, and his girlfriend Jody turned him into one. Without even asking. Sheesh. But being in love, they stick together and just want to settle down and live out their undead years. Unforunately, Jody was supposed to leave town but didn’t, which attracts some unfavorable attention from the cops. They have a 16-year old perky Goth minion, Abby, to try to help run their errands, and they’re being hunted down by Tommy’s grocery store buddies at the urging of a blue hooker named Blue. So you know, that all sucks.

If possible, I love You Suck even more than Bloodsucking Fiends. I don’t remember if that’s how I felt the first time I read these, but it’s definitely true this time around. It’s rare that a sequel is better than the first book. I think it’s partly because Abby Normal is in this book – she’s a hysterically dramatic Goth teenager, and cracks me up a lot throughout the book. Mostly, this book is a lot like the first though – funny, engaging, and a little sweet, despite all the vampires and blood-sucking. It’s mostly a fluff read.

What’s great about Moore though is that he puts some great bits in his stories that actually kind of say a lot, amidst all the goofiness. Like this:

“Until she had been changed and had stalked the city as a vampire, she never realized that virtually every moment she had been there as a woman, she had been a little bit afraid. A man would never understand.

The first time I read this, I was like “YES. THIS.” Because it’s pretty true – without even realizing it or conciously doing it, we women take little precautions because we understand on some instinctive level how much danger there is out there lurking, and how little prepared we are to defend ourselves (for most of us, anyways). And I love that Jody recognizes that and celebrates her new role as a vampire – that she no longer is a victim because now SHE’S the one people should be afraid of. That she can handle herself if any asshole decides to try to screw around with her. Basically, Jody is a badass and I love her. She’s easily one of my favorite Moore characters.

And well… I love that Jody kind of embraces being a vampire, whether it technically makes her evil or not (see quote at the top there). Well, because I think people put too much stock in the “vampires are damned” thing. Maybe it’s because I’m largely an athiest, but that never bothered me much.

Anyyyywho, there’s one more book in Moore’s vampire trilogy, called Bite Me. I don’t rememer enjoying that one as much as the first two, but I’m looking forward to re-reading it soon.

If you’re looking to read something in the spirit of Halloween that’s not too scary or depressing, you should check out this trilogy. I mean, you can read these books in basically a day, so what are you waiting for? It’s so awesome.

Sarah Says: 4.5 stars

 

Giving in to the peer pressure & signing up for R.I.P. VIII

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R.eaders I.mbibing P.eril VIII is an annual challenge kind-of thingy that happens in the fall – it’s hosted by Carl at Stainless Steel Droppings, and literally EVERYBODY and their mothers have signed up for it. At least it seems that way. I mean I’ve kind of seen bloggers participating in past years, but this week I’m pretty sure sign-up posts have gone up for about 75% of the blogs that I follow. And everyone’s so excited about it, which got me all excited about it, which led to this.

The point of R.I.P. is to read horror, mystery, thriller, paranormal, spooky, gothic, and other various darker genres of books between September 1st and October 31st. It’s a way to get in the mood for autumn! Which I’m kind of digging right now – tall boots, sweaters, cider, and spooky books all sound pretty nice right now. There are different levels (“perils”) that you can sign up for, and of course I’m going for Peril the First (read 4 books) because go big or go home, right? Right.

So here’s my stack.

Readers Imbibing Peril VIII

 

  • Murder is Binding by Lorna Barrett – I’ve been meaning to try this cozy mystery series for ages. The author is local to my area, and this copy is signed! Need to read.
  • Bag of Bones by Stephen King – Because I hear that this is a good King novel? And I’m trying to dip my toe into the King waters this year, I suppose.
  • Beloved by Toni Morrison – No lie, I started this book about 5 or 6 years ago and stopped because it was freaking me out. Like put-it-in-the-freezer kind of freaking me out. Time to put on my big girl panties and try again.
  • The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins – WILKIE! And I missed the epic readalong for this 1.5 years ago because my grandma passed away, and I think that’s kind of why I haven’t tried reading it since. But it seems like a perfect fall read, so I’m gonna do it!
  • Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers by Mary Roach – This is actually non-fiction, but I’ve been wanting to try out Roach for a long time, and it’s about DEAD BODIES. So that should totally count.
  • Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs – I just bought this at the library for $2, and it seems appropriately dark and creepy.
  • Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter by Seth Grahame-Smith – I STILL haven’t read this or seen the movie. If I do both, then I’d technically be participating in “Peril on the Screen” as well, so yay there.
  • The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern – The hype for this one had better be worth it. I actually have no idea if it’s dark or creepy, but I saw it on some other R.I.P. lists, so I’m adding it.

Is it wise to add MORE reading to my already overflowing stacks for the upcoming months? Probably not, but I’m doing it anyways! And I’m psyched to start, just as soon as I finish Empire Falls, which admittedly is KILLING me right now.

Ummm so I don’t know how this works exactly – I’m going to aim to read some of these books, and if I do I’ll tag them with “R.I.P. VIII”. I’ll maybe do a wrap-up post in the beginning of November? How do you guys usually keep track of this sort of thing? Is there a Twitter hashtag or anything that we use? Tell me stuff, I’m new at this.

So, does reading some spooky stuff to get in the spirit of autumn sound cool to you? Of course it does! Join in the peer pressure. Do it.

~Sarah

 

Sarah Sunday!

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Good morning ya’ll!

Sarah update: FINALLY finished with my absolutely crazy work schedule, hopefully for the rest of the year. In fact, I’m actually taking some days off in November and December to do holiday stuff, so even though I’ll be losing a little money there – YAY. I’m really looking forward to the holidays this year, because it’s the first year in like 3 years that I don’t have to work on Christmas Day.

Sooooo, what happened this week. Well, saw a lot of my momma cause she’s back in town and I had to drive her around a lot because her van is broken down. She was in Florida and travelling around down south for about 3 weeks, so it was really nice to see her and catch up. I love my mom 🙂 And Halloween happened, and you can see the temporary pink hair above! It was such a pain in the ass to do, and it did wash out already, which makes me a little sad. I was more disappointed than I thought I’d be that it washed out so quick – I didn’t realize how much I missed having pink hair. I’m too lazy to put demi-permanent pink streaks in my hair, but you know, the option is there. We’ll see, maybe for my birthday or something next year. OH and see above my little sister and L’s Halloween costumes! Princess Leia and Yoda. AWESOME. And my nephew Josh was the red Power Ranger (cannot believe those are still around, lol) and my niece Emma was a doctor!

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Cuties.

 

I originally took this Saturday off so that I could go to that big warehouse booksale, but that didn’t happen. Instead the honeyman and I had a really nice day together – went to breakfast, went shopping, bought a new microwave (finally!), came home and played with Gabby, etc. I missed him so much while I was working a lot, so it was just wonderful to be able to hang out together. Sorry for the sap, but it’s true.

What else… oh, as of this morning I’ve lost 20.6 lbs! Woo-hoooo! It’s made a big difference, at least in how my clothes fit – a lot of my cold weather clothes from last year are a bit baggy now, and jeans that I used to never wear because they were way too tight are now a little loose on me. So yeah, that’s awesome. I’m thinking I’ll stop at 165 lbs, which would mean I have about another 5 lbs to lose. We’ll see in a couple weeks.

And speaking of weight loss, here’s a before and after pic of my older sister Heather, who has been using MFP (My Fitness Pal) and working out for one whole year now, and she’s lost a little over 60 lbs total! Doesn’t she look awesome??? YAYYYYY HEATHER!

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This week I’m just hoping to get at least a little relaxing time in, amid errands and cleaning and such. And I’ve borrowed the first three Star Wars movies from a friend, so I’m hoping to start watching those this week. I’ve never really seen them in their entirety, and the nerd in me really wants to.

Bookish update: I finished the The Grapes of Wrath this week (obviously), and I’m still aiming to do a non-spoilery review of it sometime very soon. I finished the 4th Nightside book, in which something major was revealed and I am seriously restraining myself from starting the next one right now. I’m currently reading The Fellowship of the Ring (LOTR #1) and enjoying it – I’m a little less than halfway through it. So you know, hopefully I’ll finish that within the next couple days and be able to review it.

Also, I realized last night that #DailyBookPic is happening again! So I’m going to try to catch up on it today, but if you guys want to join in, just jump in whenever. Just take a pic per the prompt for the day, and then Instagram/Tweet/blog it and add the #DailyBookPic hashtag so people can see it! So much fun 🙂 Here’s the list (I’d link to the origin of it, but I saved it to my phone to add here and I can’t get to the website from work).

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The other bookish thing that I supposed happened is that the honeyman and I have started our bans on each other so we can start Christmas shopping for each other, which means I can’t buy any books until after Christmas. SO SAD.

Okay, that’s all the updating I have in me for right now! Hope you guys have a fantastic week!

~Sarah