Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Books Lately

Happy Show Us Your Books day with Steph & Jana! I am still kinda in a funk in the sense that I am reading plenty, but books aren't really wowing me right now. With a random exception here or there. Which could be the books I'm reading, sure, but it feels like me, if that makes sense.

^All my choices for Erin's challenge! 

A Curse So Dark and Lonely - Brigid Kemmerer
beauty and the beast retelling
This book was so good!! I kept hearing how amazing it was and I knew I would love it, and I did. But still, it took me almost 2 weeks to read, so that's how I know the funk is me and not the books I am reading. But anyway. This was such a fun, interesting, fantastic Beauty & the Beast retelling. Absolutely loved every second of it, can't wait for the next one.
lady opens a cupcake cafe after being made redundant 
I don't know why this was on netgalley when it was published years ago but I'm not complaining. It was cute. I enjoyed it for the most part but had a really hard time with how she kept going back to her dirtbag ex. I liked the ending, I liked the other characters, I liked the story. Take out how much of a doormat she was and I would have liked this a lot more. No big, it was cute and passed the time well enough.
Received from Netgalley.
Two Can Keep a Secret - Karen McManus
secrets, twins, missing girls and murder mysteries
I really enjoyed her first book and found it instantly unputdownable, though it had its issues. I found this one the opposite of unputdownable in the beginning, perhaps I am easily confused but I couldn't wrap my head around it all. Eventually it picks up and I liked it a lot. So even though it wasn't instantly unputdownable, I much preferred the story, the ending and the characters in this one. I'd definitely read her next one.
Recursion - Blake Crouch
sci-fi mystery thriller
Not my favourite of his, but I did like it a lot. I just think a lot went over my head and I don't know that I loved the topic. It eventually got unputdownable though, when it focuses more on the characters, maybe? I really liked the two main characters and I loved the ending. He really is a fantastic writer, he has a talent for mixing in the sciencey stuff and making it interesting and somewhat easy to understand.
Received from Netgalley.
Maybe You Should Talk to Someone - Lori Gottlieb
memoir/self help
This was June's book club book and I admit, I was resistant to reading it. It was interesting, but some parts were super hard to read - that's on me though, don't think it was the content or writing that would bother other people. It was a really good book club book, lots of discussion.
Meet Me in Monaco - Hazel Gaynor & Heather Webb
historical fiction, grace kelly, photographer + perfumer
I requested this purely based on their other book. I wasn't loving it as much as Last Christmas in Paris, but it was good - one thing was annoying me but I could brush it off if the story went where I wanted it to go. Then something else happens and it meant I finished the book irrationally bitter and cranky. I still liked it overall, I just would have liked it a lot more if something else had happened. How's that for a vague review.
Received from Edelweiss.

Parental Guidance - Avery Flynn
If you remember me talking about Butterface and Muffin Top - this is the same author. I adore her. I love the topics she writes about, I freaking love her characters, her books are just so bloody delightful. At first I was upset she was veering away from the Hartigans series, but after reading this one I am 0% upset. One of my favourite things is finding an author and knowing exactly what I am getting from them, Avery Flynn is one of them for me. If you are looking for fun, adorable, slightly steamy romances with realistic characters - pick up one of her books.
Received from Netgalley.
The Wallflower Wager - Tessa Dare 
This one doesn't come out until next month, it's the third in the Girl Meets Duke series. I didn't love it as much as the first two, but I did really really enjoy it.  It was funny and adorable and I wanted to squeeze the two main characters. The first one is still my favourite though!
Received ARC.
Lady Bridget's Diary - Maya Rodale
This is a mix between a P&P and Bridget Jones retelling - I know what you're thinking, Kristen, Bridget is a P&P retelling already so that's redundant but there are things in Bridget that aren't in P&P, so this is a mix of the two, and regency to boot. It was bloody delightful. Did I like it because of P&P/Bridget or because it was actually a fabulously wonderful time? Don't know, don't care friends.
Get a Life, Chloe Brown - Talia Hibbert
OMG. I cannot even with my love for this book. It comes out in November - I am never this far ahead with ARCs but there was no way I could hold off. Also, there's a cat! There needs to be more cats in books. The heroine is a chronically ill computer geek with an 'I almost died so I need to get a life' list. Also, the hero is dealing with the after effects of an emotionally abusive relationship and he's all emotionally vulnerable and not a dickhead about it. These things don't sound like they'd make a romcom, but gah. My feelings. My heart. I just, I just can't, okay. It is steamy because it is Talia Hibbert, but this is one of my top reads of 2019 fo shiz. Also, cat.
Received from Netgalley.

Still working on The Huntress and also The Wife Between Us

Linking up with Steph & Jana

Life According to Steph

TL;DR - I recommend A Curse So Dark and Lonely if fantasy is at all your jam. I also did like Two Can Keep A Secret, Recursion & Maybe You Should Talk to Someone.

Read anything decent lately?

Friday, July 5, 2019

2019 June/July Goals

Hope everyone had a good 4th of July, whether it was a holiday or a normal July day for you. We are off today as well, so 4 day weekend yay! We aren't doing anything, which is absolutely lovely.

June was a bit of a bust, goals wise. Perhaps I am making the wrong kind of goals, especially book related (the least important ones). I did end up putting my clothes away (on the very last day of June, but still). I did not make any vet appointments, I did not finish the 2 BOTM books I started, nor did I listen to an audiobook I already owned... I did not delete any apps, I did not get reusable grocery bags. But, did I mention I finally put my clothes away? 4 months after my closet organisation birthday present?

Chelsea is embarrassed by how often I fail at my goals.

So, lets try July shall we...

go through and delete unnecessary apps on phone
empty spare room closet + under bed (it's turned into a bit of a junk room)
list things online, donate other things, send other things to thredup. just get rid of some stuff.
make vet appointment for penny
go to the gym/exercise 10 times
rip up carpet in sunroom + put new flooring down
do something out of my comfort zone, I don't know what yet, but I will think of something
get some reusable grocery bags and actually use them.
go through a car wash because lets throw a fun goal in there shall we.

9 goals, might be a little ambitious but all I can do is keep on trying.

You know that thing about how some people do well with external expectations and others internal, some are rebels etc etc. What if you are none, or all? I will never ever ever let someone down if they are relying on me - so external works for me... but posting on my blog or telling someone else 'to keep me accountable' is simply not the same as my friend waiting for me at the gym. I might fail my new years resolution if it is losing weight or going to the gym X times a week, but I'll kick butt at it if it's drinking a certain amount of water or cutting back on social media.

I like rules and guidelines and I love making goals. So why do I have such a hard time actually accomplishing them? I don't make them just for fun, I actually do want to tick all these things off my list. So how do I get better at that? Ugh. Am I the only one? I'm probably not, so if you have any suggestions do feel free to share.

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

June 2019 Recap - What's New With You Link Up

Hello all, time for another what's new with you link up! Thanks again if you join me, I always appreciate it. You don't have to display the button if you don't want to, but don't forget to mention it somewhere in your post and check out some of the other posts! I'll be doing a monthly recap like I do every month. Just posting a bit early because of the public holiday.

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June was a pretty good month, with a few downer moments which is to be expected. It was my due date month, I took the day off so I could just hang out at home. My friends sent me flowers and Heather sent me a beautiful bracelet. I also got a lovely card from Bev. I admit I feel a little aimless right now, like the due date was the end of the tunnel kind of, but now it has come and gone and it wasn't the end of the tunnel. If that makes sense.

There is a Greek church near our gym that does a little festival each year so we decided to swing by after a workout one day. The food was delicious, we didn't stay long though.

The following weekend we went to the last Downs After Dark for the... season? Spring? I don't know. I think it starts up again in the autumn. It was super fun. I think I won like $4? I mean, overall I lost like $5 but I won $4 on the last race so I am counting it, ha.

Other things - went to blaze (yum), went to a little going away party for KC's coworker (their goldie is the cutest), I tagged along to KC's trivia he does with his coworkers (mozzarella sticks), we went to an impromptu breakfast after a morning workout (First Watch, eggs were amazing, potatoes were lacklustre how do you stuff up taters?), deer! and finally, I made lamingtons. What are lamingtons you say? Typically a sponge cake (but I made a pound cake) with chocolate icing and then coconut flakes. I don't like coconut normally, but I love lamingtons. I could have been making these for 7 years but I only just thought about it. I had no idea they'd be so easy. They were delicious, if I do say so myself.

I didn't work out as much as I should have, though I did start yoga again. I got some grooming gloves in an attempt to help Millie with her hair and though they work, it is hard to get her belly which is where most of her hair is (and where she gets the mats because she doesn't clean properly). The cats are occasionally hanging out in the sunroom with me though it is starting to get a bit too hot for them (not me of course).

As always, I read some books - though not as much as previous months. Technically still reading A Curse So Dark and Lonely. Book club was at my house (right after our AC went kaput for a couple hours, it is fixed now, KC could kickstart it manually while we were waiting on the $10 replacement part to come in). For some reason I never take photos of the food when I host, but we had burgers (thanks KC) and all that jazz.

In case you're curious about our sink hole, it has been completely repaired, and about a week after that they ended up re-paving the whole street (they are slowly working through our city/neighbourhood) so you can't really tell anymore.

And that's about it from me.

If you'd like to link up, please do so below.

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Click here to enter
So, what's new with you? Hope everyone has a lovely 4th of July if you are in the US. We aren't doing anything except hanging at home, which is fine by me.

Monday, July 1, 2019

Link Up Reminder

Hello all! Just a quick reminder to anyone who wants to link up - this Thursday the 4th is the next What's New With You link up if you want to join me! I'll be posting on the 3rd though, so it'll be open then.

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