Wrap Ups & Hauls

Weekly Wrap-Up: 4/10 – 4/16/17


Happy Sunday bookworms!

Happy Easter to those who celebrate!  Also, Chag sameach to all who celebrate Passover!

  My family and I left on Thursday for a little holiday weekend getaway in northern Ohio at my parent’s home on Lake Erie.  We’ve been enjoying some good weather, good food, and lots of wonderful family time with my side of the family.  It is always nice to slow down and recharge.  Unfortunately it’s back to reality tomorrow.

I took a little unplanned hiatus this week from the blog, and for once I didn’t feel guilty about it at all.  I think all the stress of redesigning my blog burned me out a bit, so it was nice to take a little break.  Plus I never get much accomplished when prepping for a family vacation, so it was the perfect excuse to take a step back and not stress about getting posts up.

Despite my absence around the blogosphere, it has given me some time to work on some upcoming projects & posts.  Fear not, I’ll be around this week 🙂

 Let’s see what I had going on this past week…

*Weekly Wrap-Up is a weekly post where I feature what posts were published on the blog for the past week, any bookish/blog happenings, what I recently finished reading, what I am currently reading, what I will be reading next, noteworthy posts around the bookish blogosphere, and any interesting bookish articles I came across.



Nothing.  Zip.  Zilch.  Nada.  Diddly.  Zero.

((crickets chirping))

*Side note: does anyone else love the word “diddly”?  Probably one of my favorite words.



»  As I mentioned above, I didn’t get anything up on the blog this week.  HOWEVER this doesn’t mean I haven’t been working on posts.  I have been working on a few different projects and posts that I am super excited to share with you all in the upcoming weeks.  Now that I’ve redesigned my blog, it’s time to step things up around here.



*Book titles link to Goodreads

Recently finished reading:

» The Magician’s Assistant by Ann Patchett

The Magician's Assistant

5-Star Rating System

*SOKY Book Fest TBR

The Magician’s Assistant is about loss, grieving, and family secrets, and less about getting on stage and assisting a magician… I would label it more of a “journey to self-discovery” kind of book.  I find it very interesting that this was published back in 1998, as it includes a “non-traditional” family… I definitely think this book was ahead of its time.   This is my 3rd Ann Patchett book, and I am starting to realize that Ann likes the reader to think the book is going to be predictable, but then does the opposite of how it seems it is going to go.

While I enjoyed this book while I was reading it, it did end up falling short in the end.  I think my main complaint is that I felt like the book was building up towards a climax, but it never came… There was a small twist towards the end, but it didn’t really work for me.  I was also anticipating a profound resolution at the end, but again it never came.  I really like how Patchett included the dream sequences throughout the book, however they tapered off towards the end of the book and nothing really ever became of them.  I almost think she should have ended the book on a dream sequence to wrap everything up… I just didn’t feel satisfied when I came to the end.

» Fates and Traitors: A Novel of John Wilkes Booth by Jennifer Chiaverini


5-Star Rating System

*Part of my Ohioana Book Fest TBR

I really enjoyed how Chiaverini chose to tell John Wilkes Booth’s story through the eyes of the women who “knew” and loved him best.  I was familiar with Mary Surratt’s side of things, but I had never read about John Wilkes Booth’s parents & siblings, nor his (alleged) fiancé’s side of things.  I never really thought about how John’s actions effected his family.  It was really heartbreaking to see that they were judged for John’s actions, even though they did not share his political beliefs.  Nothing makes me happier then reading a historical fiction that gives a new perspective on well-known historical events.

Fates and Traitors is a slower paced novel with LONG chapters.  Just to give you a reference point, the first chapter is 65 pages long…  I would have preferred the author shorten up the chapters a bit, but I understand why she chose to format it this way.  There were parts of this book that were a little dense due to a lot of “info dump” and filler details going on, but overall my attention was held for the majority of this book.  I would recommend this book to historical fiction lovers, but caution those who don’t typically read within the genre.

» White Oleander by Janet Fitch


This book has been on my TBR for many years.  This is one of those instances where I’ve actually owned a copy of the book for years, but never had the motivation to pick it up.  I noticed that it was available for an audiobook download through my library, I decided to give it a go as it is a shorter audiobook (about 6 hours and 20 minutes).  I actually didn’t have any expectations going into this book.  I didn’t even read the book description.

I have no idea what my feelings are about this book.  Fitch is a beautiful writer!  Her writing is so lush and poetic.  HOWEVER I wonder if it was a little over my head and if I missed what the author was trying to say in some parts… but I did enjoy this book!  If you are a fan of poetry, I would highly recommend this one to you!

» Pillage by Obert Sky


5-Star Rating System

*Part of my SOKY Book Fest TBR

This one was not my cup of tea.  I had a hard time connecting to the author’s writing style… it felt a little too basic, even for a middle grade read.  The storyline and characters were cheesy and cliché if I’m being honest.  I contemplated DNFing it a few different times, but ultimately decided to stick with it to see if things picked up.

Currently reading:

» The Illusionist’s Apprentice by Kristy Cambron


*Part of my SOKY Book Fest TBR

» Counting by 7s by Holly Goldberg Sloan

Counting By 7

» love, and you by Gretchen Gomez


On deck:

» Commonwealth by Ann Patchett




» Jess @the mud and stars book blog shares some self-care tips for book bloggers → Self-care tips for book bloggers


» Cait @Paper Fury talks about blogging expectations vs. reality → Expectations vs Reality for Book Bloggers (Entirely True And Not At All Hyperbolic )


 » Rachel @Life of a Female Bibliophile is hosting a giveaway → Springtime Bookish Giveaway!


*Open until the 20th at midnight

» Jen @Reader in a Reverie asks where dystopian fiction has gone? →Where Did The Dystopian Fiction Go?

Screenshot 2017-04-14 15.47.21



» 9 Types of Readers You Definitely Know

*I would say I am a cross between a mild version of “The Die Hard” mixed with “The Lifelong Book Lover,” and a pinch of “The Intellect.”

» The Novel That Earned America’s Biggest Prize (and Others)

*Congrats to Colson Whitehead!

» 5 of the Best Post-Apocalyptic Novels

*I haven’t read any of these! BUT #1 was on my Top 5 Wednesday: Science Fiction Books On My TBR list 🙂

» 3 Thrillers You Won’t Be Able To Put Down

» 10 Exciting New Middle Grade Books with Latinx Main Characters

*Lucky Broken Girl and Us, In Progress: Short Stories About Young Latinos are definitely going on my TBR!

» Enter to Win an Intergalactic Prize Pack Featuring Claudia Gray’s Defy the Stars

*A giveaway for YA fans

» 20 Best Books To Pick Up This April

» 8 Books for Kids with Big Imaginations

» Book Giveaway: Stacia Pelletier’s The Half Wives

*A giveaway for the historical fiction fans

» Books to Read if You Love Fierce, Smart Women

*I received an ARC of Enchanted Island but hadn’t gotten around to reading it yet.  I was very excited to see it on this list

» Spring 2017’s Best Sci-Fi & Fantasy Books: Dragons, and Robots, and Bears, Oh My!


What are you currently reading?

What will you read next?

Have a wonderful week, and happy reading:)

23 thoughts on “Weekly Wrap-Up: 4/10 – 4/16/17”

    1. I am so glad I am not alone! I definitely can see why it is so beloved, but I definitely think it has a specific target audience. It feels very nice to knock it off my TBR after being on it for many years 🙂 ((insert sigh of relief here))


  1. Ooh, I love the redesign of your blog! It looks super pretty. A bit of down time from blogging is always nice to clear your head! Sounds like you’ve had a really lovely week. Happy Easter to you too!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hope you had a wonderful Easter weekend with the family by the lake, sounds like a lovely way to spend the holiday. I also REALLY LOVE the new look on your blog Amanda! it’s so pretty ***heart eyes*** also I read White Oleandar MANY years ago & feel that “Her writing is so lush and poetic. HOWEVER I wonder if it was a little over my head and if I missed what the author was trying to say in some parts… but I did enjoy this book!” accuratley describes my reading experience with it. I’ll be on the look out for your thoughts on Common Wealth 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much Lilly! I am so overwhelmed with all the positive feedback about my redesign ((I’m not crying, you’re crying)) since I spent so much time and effort on it lol I am so happy to hear that you felt similar with White Oleander! I think this book definitely has a target audience who will appreciate this book and have a better understanding of the author than I did.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Awww I’m sorry for the late reply Amanda, the little fam & I have been battling the stomach flu 😩 but YES! I absolutely LOVE your re-design! 😍 and your efforts always shine through Amanda. As a reader, it’s always appreciated when a fave blogger spruces up the place lmao! Your blog has always been easy on the eyes which keeps me hannnnngin on (freestyle hits stuck in my head 🤣) & yea I agree, I was def not the audience for that book 🤷🏻‍♀️

        Liked by 1 person

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