How to Create a Story Board on Pinterest | Writing Right

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Hello everyone! You might not know this about me but I write. Novels, poetry, songs, complaint letters to Fedex for destroying packages, I write just about everything. For the past few years I have been participating in NaNoWriMo (national novel writing month). April is Camp Nano, meaning it is a more laid back version used as a warm up before the big event. For this camp I will be working on an outline for a new fantasy book. That’s all I want to say about it for now, but I will give you more information on it soon *wink*

 
I wanted to start a series where I give writing advice (to the best of my limited ability), share my tips and tricks and just talk about my struggles with writing. I thought it would be funny to call this series “Writing Right” since there is no right way to write. Also right write is a tongue twister. Say it with me, right write right write right write right write.

The first thing I always do when I start a new writing project is create a story board on Pinterest. I am a visual writer and I get a lot of inspiration from photography and artwork. I always need a visual representation of my story and Pinterest is a blessing. Now there is a learning curve to making boards on pinterest so fear not, I am here to lay it all out there.

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First things is you need to CREATE a board. Don’t worry about titling it, you can write untitled if you aren’t sure what your story title is yet. As you can see I labeled the projects I did for Nanowrimo and I also have separate boards for settings, characters, and story ideas. This is so if I come across a picture I like that doesn’t fit my current work in progress, I can save it for inspiration later.

Once you’ve created a board you need to find photos to pin. Let’s use my NaNoWriMo board from last year as an example. This was a spy thriller so the theme of my board was dark, sexy and bloody.

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For this board I picked a color scheme to add to the aesthetic, but this is totally optional. Obviously I went for red/black/white photos and it really fit the feeling of my story. Searching for pictures can be challenging. Here are some things I do to find pictures.

♡ Adding “aesthetic” to everything I search helps not only find great pictures, but also other boards that fit the theme I am looking for. Don’t be afraid to search through other people’s boards for pins (but don’t just copy their board completely)

♡ Always look through the related pictures to what you pin. You will be able to find similar photos as well as other boards who pinned that photo

♡ Get weird and creative when searching for pins. Just put words together to find something great

♡ Find book aesthetic boards. This works if you know of a book that is similar to yours. For example, if you are writing an epic fantasy you could find Lord of the Rings aesthetic boards and there would be a ton of pins that would work for your board

♡ Find your favorite author’s pinterest board. A lot of published authors have a board for their books and there you can find some amazing things. Some authors to look for are Marie Lu, Leigh Bardugo, Mary E Pearson

While pinterest is amazing for inspiration I recommend that you have a story in mind before searching for pins. Otherwise you can get lost in all that pinterest has to offer. It is best to go in with a specific direction and work off of that

You can follow me on Pinterest here.

Let me know in the comments if you use Pinterest or any other way of visualizing your story.  

Oops I Bought Books Again

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Hey everyone! I hope you are having a good weekend. I have been trying to limit my book buying this year and while I still have acquired a fairly large amount of books, I am buying significantly less so YAY! I’ve been trying to do the 5-book-method where I get to buy one book for every five that I read. It has been working well, except for a few times when there were book sales going on and I couldn’t resist the cheap prices.

So onto the book haul. These are all the books that I have gotten from January-March

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Birthday Gifts

My 21st birthday was in January and I got some books as gifts. These were all books that I was desperately wanting to read.

The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller, Iliad retelling with a romance between Achilles and Patroclus. I loved the Iliad when I read it in high school so I am so excited to read Miller’s take on it.

Heroine Complex by Sarah Kuhn*. Female asian superheroes. Need I say more?

The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin*, an alternate earth called the Stillness, which is plagued by constant seismic activity. This leads to frequent near-extinction events. I have been wanting to read one of Jemisin’s books for a while now. She is known for writing very diverse fantasy which is my jam. This one in particular won the Hugo award for best novel so I figured this would be a good place to start.

The Mad Scientists Daughter by Cassandra Rose Clarke, a love story between a woman and an android. That alone had me interested. I love books that have an AI character. Some of my favorites are The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet and Illuminae. I adored both of these books so I am hoping the AI theme continues with this one.

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Books I sold my soul for  Bought

If You Could Be Mine by Sara Farizan*, two best friends fall in love, but Iran is a dangerous place for two girls in love. This book was only $1 so I really couldn’t pass it up. I’m interested to read about a lesbian relationship set in this dangerous climate. I have heard that this book is transphobic so I will be keeping an eye out for that.

The Education of Margot Sanchez by Lilliam Rivera*. After stealing her father’s credit card to buy new clothes, Margot is grounded and forced to work off her punishment in her families grocery store. I’ve heard a lot of great things about this one and it is an #OwnVoices book! Also it has been compared to Pretty in Pink which is a movie I love.

Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde*. I read and reviewed this book and absolutely loved it. The anxiety and bisexual rep was a breath of fresh air.

Otherbound by Corrine Duyvis*, is the story of Nolan and Amara, two people who share a mind link. Every time Nolan blinks he’s transported to Amara’s world and forced to witness her ordeals until the day comes when he gains control over Amara’s body. Aside from that amazing sounding plot this book has queer ladies, poc main characters and a disabled main character. Also it is a Bisexual Book Award Winner! Hell YES!

Written in the Stars by Aisha Saeed*, following a Pakistani girl who has always known her parents will arrange her marriage. But she breaks the rules and falls in love with a boy her parents don’t approve of.

The Girl From Everywhere by Heidi Heilig*, follows Nix who has spent her whole life aboard her father’s ship, sailing throughout time. With a map, her father can sail to any time and place, real or imagined. Their goal is to find a map of Honolulu that can take them back to Nix’s mother. The problem is that this could erase Nix from existence. I have this book on my kindle but I had to buy a physical copy because there are so many beautiful maps throughout the book.

Far From You by Tess Sharpe*, is a thriller about two friends and the secret they shared. Four months ago Mina died in what everyone believes was a drug deal gone wrong. But only Sophie, her best friend, knows the truth. That there was no drug deal and Mina was murdered. This book sounds amazing and it also has a TON of diversity.

Magic of Blood and Sea by Cassandra Rose Clarke. When I saw this book I got so excited. This is a bind-up of one of my favorite duologies that went out of print a few years ago. Thank god it got picked up by a new publisher and reprinted in this beautiful edition. The jist of this duology is, a pirate princess and a cursed assassin bound together. If you enjoy a good hate-to-love romance, then you will love this.

The Stars are Legion by Kameron Hurley. Also known as Lesbians in Space. I’ve heard this books is feminist, brutal and gay. My top three buzz words.

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Books Sent for Review

 Mad Miss Mimic by Sarah Henstra, is about a girl in 1800s London who has a speech disorder that causes her to stutter but allows her to perfectly imitate other people’e voices. That alone sounds fascinating to me.

♡ Island of Exiles by Erica Cameron. I don’t know the general plot of this book, but I accepted it for review because I was told that the entire cast was is PoC and are all either bisexual, asexual, or categorize themselves somewhere on the gender binary.

♡ Empress of a Thousand Skies by Rhoda Belleza. Basically I will read anything that is pitched as a space opera. But this one in particular caught my attention because it sounds like it has a very badass female lead.

The Valiant by Lesley Livingston, follows princess Fallon, the sworn enemy of Julius Caesar. When she is seventeen she is captured and sold to an elite training school for female gladiators and owned by none other than Julius Caesar. The Gladiator is one of my all time favorite movies and I have always wanted a YA version of it so I am beyond excited to read this.

♡ The Careful Undressing of Love by Corey Ann Haydu. This book is hard to sum up as it seems to have some magical realism aspects to it. But with its gorgeous cover and intriguing blurb, I had to see what it was all about. “Devonairre Street Girls must not fall in love. That is the responsibility, that is the Curse, that is what is true.”

♡ City of Saints and Thieves by Natalie C. Anderson, is pitched as Oceans Eleven meets Blood Diamond. SOLD.

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Book of the Month

This month I worked with Book of the Month and was sent their March book selections. Basically BotM is a subscription box service where every month you get to choose one book out of their 5 selections chosen by their judges. All the books are brand new releases. If you want to sign up, your first month will be $5 (then $14.99/mo).

 Marlena by Julie Buntin

♡ All Grown Up by Jami Attenburg

♡ Exit West by Mohsin Hamid

♡ The Stranger in the Woods by Michael Finkel

♡ Dead Letters by Caite Dolan-Leach

I filmed a video on my channel where I read the first chapter in each of these books and chose which one I was most interested in reading. You can watch it here.

Finally we have reached the end of this never-ending post. Sorry about that. Hopefully my hauls will get smaller. Let me know in the comments if you have read any of these or what your last book purchase was! 

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A VERY ARC-ISH READATHON: TBR

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[image from Bookshelves and Paperbacks]

ARCs are great. But when advanced copies are just one click away it’s so. hard. to. resist. and I end up getting way more than I could every read. So thankfully Aimal created this readathon as a way to help catch up and lighten the load. The idea is to spend April catching up on review books, which I desperately need to do. For all the information check out this post.

So now onto my TBR…

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Queer There and Everywhere by Sarah Prager

This first-ever LGBTQ history book for young adults will appeal to fans of fun, empowering pop-culture books like Rad American Women A-Z and Notorious RBG.

World history has been made by countless lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer individuals—and you’ve never heard of many of them. Queer author and activist Sarah Prager delves deep into the lives of 22 people who fought, created, and loved on their own terms. From high-profile figures like Abraham Lincoln and Eleanor Roosevelt to the trailblazing gender-ambiguous Queen of Sweden and a bisexual blues singer who didn’t make it into your history books, these astonishing true stories uncover a rich queer heritage that encompasses every culture, in every era.

By turns hilarious and inspiring, the beautifully illustrated Queer, There, and Everywhere is for anyone who wants the real story of the queer rights movement.

How to Make a Wish by Ashley Herring Blake

All seventeen year-old Grace Glasser wants is her own life. A normal life in which she sleeps in the same bed for longer than three months and doesn’t have to scrounge for spare change to make sure the electric bill is paid. Emotionally trapped by her unreliable mother, Maggie, and the tiny cape on which she lives, she focuses on her best friend, her upcoming audition for a top music school in New York, and surviving Maggie’s latest boyfriend—who happens to be Grace’s own ex-boyfriend’s father.

Her attempts to lay low until she graduates are disrupted when she meets Eva, a girl with her own share of ghosts she’s trying to outrun. Grief-stricken and lonely, Eva pulls Grace into midnight adventures and feelings Grace never planned on. When Eva tells Grace she likes girls, both of their worlds open up. But, united by loss, Eva also shares a connection with Maggie. As Grace’s mother spirals downward, both girls must figure out how to love and how to move on.

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

A laugh-out-loud, heartfelt YA romantic comedy, told in alternating perspectives, about two Indian-American teens whose parents have arranged for them to be married.

Dimple Shah has it all figured out. With graduation behind her, she’s more than ready for a break from her family, from Mamma’s inexplicable obsession with her finding the “Ideal Indian Husband.” Ugh. Dimple knows they must respect her principles on some level, though. If they truly believed she needed a husband right now, they wouldn’t have paid for her to attend a summer program for aspiring web developers…right?

Rishi Patel is a hopeless romantic. So when his parents tell him that his future wife will be attending the same summer program as him—wherein he’ll have to woo her—he’s totally on board. Because as silly as it sounds to most people in his life, Rishi wants to be arranged, believes in the power of tradition, stability, and being a part of something much bigger than himself.

The Shahs and Patels didn’t mean to start turning the wheels on this “suggested arrangement” so early in their children’s lives, but when they noticed them both gravitate toward the same summer program, they figured, Why not?

Dimple and Rishi may think they have each other figured out. But when opposites clash, love works hard to prove itself in the most unexpected ways.

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Want by Cindy Pon

Jason Zhou survives in a divided society where the elite use their wealth to buy longer lives. The rich wear special suits, protecting them from the pollution and viruses that plague the city, while those without suffer illness and early deaths. Frustrated by his city’s corruption and still grieving the loss of his mother who died as a result of it, Zhou is determined to change things, no matter the cost.

With the help of his friends, Zhou infiltrates the lives of the wealthy in hopes of destroying the international Jin Corporation from within. Jin Corp not only manufactures the special suits the rich rely on, but they may also be manufacturing the pollution that makes them necessary.

Yet the deeper Zhou delves into this new world of excess and wealth, the more muddled his plans become. And against his better judgment, Zhou finds himself falling for Daiyu, the daughter of Jin Corp’s CEO. Can Zhou save his city without compromising who he is, or destroying his own heart?

Noteworthy by Riley Redgate

It’s the start of Jordan Sun’s junior year at the Kensington-Blaine Boarding School for the Performing Arts. Unfortunately, she’s an Alto 2, which—in the musical theatre world—is sort of like being a vulture in the wild: She has a spot in the ecosystem, but nobody’s falling over themselves to express their appreciation. So it’s no surprise when she gets shut out of the fall musical for the third year straight.

Then the school gets a mass email: A spot has opened up in the Sharpshooters, Kensington’s elite a cappella octet. Worshiped … revered … all male. Desperate to prove herself, Jordan auditions in her most convincing drag, and it turns out that Jordan Sun, Tenor 1, is exactly what the Sharps are looking for.

That Thing We Call a Heart by Sheba Karim

Shabnam Qureshi is a funny, imaginative Pakistani-American teen attending a tony private school in suburban New Jersey. When her feisty best friend, Farah, starts wearing the headscarf without even consulting her, it begins to unravel their friendship. After hooking up with the most racist boy in school and telling a huge lie about a tragedy that happened to her family during the Partition of India in 1947, Shabnam is ready for high school to end. She faces a summer of boredom and regret, but she has a plan: Get through the summer. Get to college. Don’t look back. Begin anew.

Everything changes when she meets Jamie, who scores her a job at his aunt’s pie shack, and meets her there every afternoon. Shabnam begins to see Jamie and herself like the rose and the nightingale of classic Urdu poetry, which, according to her father, is the ultimate language of desire. Jamie finds Shabnam fascinating—her curls, her culture, her awkwardness. Shabnam finds herself falling in love, but Farah finds Jamie worrying.

With Farah’s help, Shabnam uncovers the truth about Jamie, about herself, and what really happened during Partition. As she rebuilds her friendship with Farah and grows closer to her parents, Shabnam learns powerful lessons about the importance of love, in all of its forms.

Featuring complex, Muslim-American characters who defy conventional stereotypes and set against a backdrop of Radiohead’s music and the evocative metaphors of Urdu poetry, THAT THING WE CALL A HEART is a honest, moving story of a young woman’s explorations of first love, sexuality, desire, self-worth, her relationship with her parents, the value of friendship, and what it means to be true.

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Movies I Watched | February ’17

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Aside from reading, I love to watch movies. I probably spend more time watching movies than I do reading. These aren’t all the movies that I watched in February but some of the highlights. If you are interested in seeing all the movies I watch, I keep a log of them on Letterboxd. Although sometimes I forget to keep up with it. Oops.

To try and keep some kind of order here I will start with my least favorite films and work my way to my favorites!

La La Land

More like Blah Blah Bland. Amiright ladies???

*insert gasp*

Are you shocked?? I hated this movie. And before you start thinking ‘you just hated this because its hyped’ hear me out. I understand why this movie gets a lot of praise, I really do. The cinematography was beautiful. It had very attractive A-list actors. The music was nice. I get it. But this movie broke the cardinal rule. IT WAS SO BORING. I barely made it through. I can’t begin to tell you how much I didn’t care about these characters. I didn’t care about their struggle. I didn’t care about their romance. I just didn’t care. And to make matters worse I cannot for the life of me understand why you would cast two actors who can’t sing in a musical. I was shocked when I heard Emma and Ryan sing. They were terrible. It made no sense to me. At first I thought it was ironic. Haha they can’t sing! Get it?! But no, I was supposed to think they were good?? At the end of the movie I was just left feeling like I wanted my money back.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

I am a huge Harry Potter fan. But I was never really excited to see this film. All the new stuff JK Rowling has been releasing lately hasn’t lived up to the magic for me. This movie could have been great. But I think it lacked direction. I felt like there were two different movies happening and neither of them were the one I wanted. In one movie we have Newt and his gang searching New York for the missing magical creatures. This was fun but a bit boring. Let’s be honest, Newt and Tina were about as interesting as dry toast. I would have much preferred for the story to be about Queenie and Jacob. I was invested in them. Then in a completely unrelated movie we have an Auror, a mysterious boy and something called an Obscurial. Neither of these stories seemed to fit together and it caused the film to lose it’s over all tone. It felt as if they had two different stories and in trying to combine them they lost the magic in each.

Now with all that being said, I will still watch the rest of these movies because I am Harry Potter trash.

Moana

Since I watched this movie I have not stopped singing ‘How Far I’ll Go’ and I’m still bitter about blah blah bland La La Land winning best song over this. Seriously? How? But Moana will definietly be joining the ranks as one of my favorite Disney films. From the overall message, to the lack of romance, this movie was perfect to me. I loved that this movie diverged from the typical “boy-saves-girl-and-they-fall-in-love” trope that Disney loves. Moana is a determined girl who is battling between the known and unknown. She wants to push boundaries and go where no one has. But she also has a duty to her island and her people.

Rogue One

This may be an unpopular opinion (not sure) but I loved Rogue One. That’s not shocking because I live and breathe Star Wars. And I’ve never met a Star Wars film I didn’t love. Yes that includes the prequels. What? They are fun. This movie had such a high stakes premise and I could feel the urgency throughout the entire film. One thing I was concerned about going in was, since we already know the aftermath of this movie, would I even care about the story? Well I did. Even though I knew what was going to happen, I was still on the edge of my seat the whole time. And the characters were brilliant. I thought the cast was amazing and had great chemistry together. Although something I do think needs to be addressed is the lack of women of color in the Star Wars universe. This movie had such a wonderful group of men of color, but that just seemed to highlight the glaring lack of WOC.

Hidden Figures

Where do I even begin with this movie. I don’t like making grand statements about favorites, but this movie has quickly become one of my all time favorite films. It’s hands down my favorite superhero film. Because yes, these ladies are superheroes. The whole time I watched this movie I couldn’t help thinking of all the little girls who would see this and know it’s okay for them to love math and science. It’s okay for them to pursue passions typically reserved for men. This movie made me smile, laugh, cry, cheer. If you watch one movie this year, I hope that this is it.

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March 17th 2017 | Wrap Up

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Lately I have been obsessed with listening to audiobooks on overdrive. In case you are unaware, overdrive is an online catalog of audiobooks and ebooks that you can check out from your library. It’s super easy and best of all, free. I’ve always enjoyed listening to audiobooks, but could never find the right time to listen. Lately I have liked listening when I wake up and before I go to sleep. I find that it helps because it’s nice to start and end my day with a book but usually I am too tired to actually read.

So since this is my first wrap up on my blog I wanted to let you know that I do not give star ratings to books. I’ve never liked this way of rating books as I feel like the meaning behind each number varies from person to person. I’d much rather give you my thoughts on a book than place a number on it.

With that said, onto the books!!!

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Born a Crime by Trevor Noah

Trevor Noah is a person whom I did not know a lot about prior to reading his memoir. I knew that he is the host of the Daily Show and that he is from South Africa, but that’s about it. This book blew me away. Trevor has had a pretty rough life. Growing up during an apartheid, his very existence was illegal. I loved learning about what it was like to grow up in South Africa. This was a part of the world that I didn’t learn much about in school. Trevor is such a good storyteller. I was so captivated by everything he said. I was amazed at how he was able to turn very tough experiences into hilarious stories. I highly recommend listening to this on audio as Trevor narrates it himself and does a fantastic job!

I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai

Malala is such an inspiration to me. Going into this book I already knew quite a bit about her but I loved hearing her first hand experiences. I also enjoyed learning more about this history and politics in Pakistan. I can see how this part might be boring to people, but being the history buff that I am I loved it. I do with that Malala narrated the whole audiobook but I did enjoy the beginning part being read by her. This wasn’t my favorite memoir but it it definietly worth a read.

Brown Girl Dreaming by Jaqueline Woodson

Such a beautiful memoir written in free verse. The pages were dripping with imagery and metaphors that so perfectly captured a moment or a thought. It touched on so many important themes like, family, race and intersectional feminism. If this quote doesn’t sell you on it then I don’t know what will.

“If someone had taken
that book out of my hand
said, You’re too old for this
maybe
I’d never have believed
that someone who looked like me
could be in the pages of the book
that someone who looked like me
had a story.”

George by Alex Gino

This was so wonderful. I’ve said this before but I LOVE seeing LGBTQ+ middle grade books. Society has a problem of thinking these topics are inappropriate for kids and that is so backwards and harmful. This is about George/Melissa, a 10 year old girl born as a boy. I loved how Gino used female pronouns through the entire book. This was so lovely to see. Gino explained what transgender means in such a simple way for kids to understand. This book is so important no matter your age. I highly recommend.

Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi

Wow this book blew me away. Covering hundreds of year of slavery in Africa and America, this book follows seven generations through the years, each with a powerful and haunting story. Starting with two half sisters who never knew each other. One is married off to a British general, living in a castle. While the sister she never knew about is just floors beneath her, preparing to be sold in the slave trade. From there we follow the threads until present day. It was amazing how each chapter held a new story but at the same time connected to all the others. This book managed to be both beautiful and haunting while providing such an enriching and educating experience. If you haven’t read this one I suggest you RUN to the nearest bookstore or library!

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Diversity Spotlight Thursday | #1

Diversity Spotlight Thursday is a weekly meme created by Aimal! Every week, you come up with one book in each of three different categories: a diverse book you have read and enjoyed, a diverse book on your TBR, and one that has not yet been released. You can check out the announcement post for more information.

I was looking for a weekly meme I could participate in and came across this one created by one of my favorite bloggers. And since it is all about featuring diverse books I knew I had to do it.

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Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz

I listened to the audiobook at the end of last year and immediately fell in love. Bonus points for being narrated by Lin Manuel Miranda. This follows Ari and Dante, two Mexican-American boys who develop the most beautiful friendship and later romance. I had heard so much about this book prior to reading it and I was worried the hype would kill it. But this book deserves all the praise. It is wonderful.

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The Bone Witch by Rin Chupeco

The beast raged; it punctured the air with its spite. But the girl was fiercer.

Tea is different from the other witches in her family. Her gift for necromancy makes her a bone witch, who are feared and ostracized in the kingdom. For theirs is a powerful, elemental magic that can reach beyond the boundaries of the living—and of the human.

Great power comes at a price, forcing Tea to leave her homeland to train under the guidance of an older, wiser bone witch. There, Tea puts all of her energy into becoming an asha, learning to control her elemental magic and those beasts who will submit by no other force. And Tea must be strong—stronger than she even believes possible. Because war is brewing in the eight kingdoms, war that will threaten the sovereignty of her homeland…and threaten the very survival of those she loves.

This book has been on my radar for a long time. But just recently I have been seeing more and more people rave about it. I don’t know much about it other than it is a fantasy with some horror elements. And that sounds right up my alley.

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The Gauntlet by Karuna Riazi

A trio of friends from New York City find themselves trapped inside a mechanical board game that they must dismantle in order to save themselves and generations of other children in this action-packed debut that’s a steampunk Jumanji with a Middle Eastern flair.

When twelve-year-old Farah and her two best friends get sucked into a mechanical board game called The Gauntlet of Blood and Sand—a puzzle game akin to a large Rubik’s cube—they know it’s up to them to defeat the game’s diabolical architect in order to save themselves and those who are trapped inside, including her baby brother Ahmed. But first they have to figure out how.

Under the tutelage of a lizard guide named Henrietta Peel and an aeronaut Vijay, the Farah and her friends battle camel spiders, red scorpions, grease monkeys, and sand cats as they prepare to face off with the maniacal Lord Amari, the man behind the machine. Can they defeat Amari at his own game…or will they, like the children who came before them, become cogs in the machine?

A steampunk Jumanji with a Middle Eastern flair? Yes please!

This book will be released on March 28th.

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Queens of Geek

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Goodreads | Amazon

This is exactly the kind of book I have been needing. I feel as if Jen took every important part of my identity and created this book solely for me. Not only was this such a fun read, but it also had wonderful discussions about important topics. The characters felt so real that at times I felt like I was reading about my own friends.

The story follows two friends as they travel from Australia to the USA, to attend SupaCon:
-Charlie, a youtube star who recently starred in her first film and ended a year long relationship with her douchebag costar Reese
-Taylor, who has autism spectrum disorder with severe anxiety and is trying to cope with the pressure that comes with starting a new chapter in life and her feelings towards her best friend Jamie

I seriously can’t believe how much of myself I saw in both Charlie and Taylor.

Reading about Taylor’s struggle with anxiety was like looking in a mirror. It was so obvious to me that Jen Wilde understands anxiety. There were so many passages in here that made me cry because they describe feelings that I have never been able to put into words.

“Everything feels like I’m on a stage, spotlight on me, all eyes on me, watching, judging. Like I’m one second away from total disaster. It’s invisible, it’s irrational, it’s never-ending. I could be standing there, smiling and chatting like everything is totally fine, while secretly wanting to scream and cry and run away. No one would every know. In my mind, no one can hear me scream.”

I also loved the relationship between Taylor and Jamie. I was rooting for them to be together from page 1. The romantic tension between them was so strong and I was just screaming for someone to make the first move!
I fell every more in love with Taylor when she overheard a girl make a rude joke about her weight. I expected Taylor to be crushed and probably cry. But instead it lit a fire within her. I felt so proud of her for being confident in herself and not letting a mean girl take that from her.

“I’m not offended by the word ‘fat,’ even though you said it like it was the worst thing ever. I don’t care what some random person thinks about my body. I like my body.”

Charlie was incredible. I related to her so much. She is a youtube star and it was so fun hearing her talk about youtube culture and making videos. Also Charlie is bisexual. While at SupaCon she meets a girl she’s been crushing on and they start a romance. And while this was Charlie’s first experience with a girl, I loved how her story wasn’t about her being bisexual. She was comfortable in her sexuality. There was one instance of biphobia, from her asshole ex, but it was immediately shot down.

“But how could you possibly know you’re bi? Have you ever been with a girl?”
I remember seeing the frustration written all over Charlie’s face, and I spoke up. “How did you know you were straight before you were with a girl, Reese? […] He’s all for equality, but he doesn’t even believe bisexuality exists.” She rubbed her fingers over the space between her eyebrows like she had a headache. “You can’t pick and choose whose equality you support. That’s not equality.”

The friendship between Taylor and Charlie is hands down my favorite female friendship I’ve ever read. They both have so many of their own problems happening but that doesn’t stop them from dropping everything and being there for the other. They are so supportive and don’t judge one another. They really reminded me of my best friends.

Another thing that I loved was that Charlie is the daughter of Chinese immigrants. And there was this beautiful moment when she is playing a video game version of her movie, and she sees herself as a character in the game. It’s such a pure moment and she is so proud to be represented in that way.

The setting in this book is what knocked it out of the park for me. It gave me flashbacks to when I have attended conventions with my friends. Which is why it felt so real to me. SupaCon seems like such a fun event, I really wished I was there with them. The nerd culture was so amazing to read about. From running for their lives in a zombie maze to participating in cosplay contests, this book was such a fun ride.

I really don’t have anything negative to say about this book except that I’m sad I finished it. Please please please do yourself a favor and read this!

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Welcome

greetingsYou have stumbled upon my blog. Right now you are probably thinking, who is this girl? Why do I care about her blog? Well my name is Riley and I am 21 years old. Cheers! I spent half of my life growing up in the Texas countryside, and the other half roaming the city streets of Boston. I can typically be found nose first in a good book, or stuffing my face with breadsticks. Sometimes both. In 2013 I started a youtube channel where I share my passion for books and it changed my life forever. I found a wonderful community of people who understands what a book hangover feels like and how to combat a reading slump.

Now over 3 years later I have decided it’s time to give blogging a try. I love making videos, but let’s face it, with my anxiety and depression filming isn’t always a viable option for me. But I needed an outlet to channel my creativity and bookish feels. Now you are probably asking, what is a wayward biblio? Well, my all time favorite book is Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire. In it there is the school for wayward children who have traveled through a door to a magical land full of adventure, only to then return to our world feeling lost and out of place. I connected with this book so much because I too have always felt a bit out of place here and like there is another world waiting for me just around the corner. If only I could find that dang door. I hope this blog will be a substitue for my door and you will allow me to continue sharing my passions here.

xoxo

-Gossip Girl

(kidding)

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