I am linking up to the Sunday Post hosted by Kim of Caffeinated Book Reviewer and The Sunday Salon (TSS) hosted by Deb Nance of Readerbuzz where participants recap our week, talk about what we are reading, share any new books that have come our way, and whatever else we want to talk about. I am also linking It's Monday! What Are you Reading? hosted by Kathryn of Book Date where readers talk about what they have been, are and will be reading.
As part of my monthly wrap up, I am linking up to Nicole of Feed Your Addiction's Monthly Wrap-Up Post and Stacking the Shelves hosted by Team Tynga's Reviews and Marlene of Reading Reality a meme in which participants share what new books came their way recently.
Spring is definitely in the air in my little pocket of California. My redbud trees are in full bloom, the lizards are scurrying about in the sun, my next door neighbors are preparing for their weekend trip to the lake, and it is too hot to sleep with all those darn blankets on at night.
What I Am Reading: I got a jump start on National Poetry Month and ended March with From the Inside: The Inner Soul of a Young Poet by Thanvi Voruganti. I had come across it on NetGalley, and it immediately caught my attention due to its tie-in to the pandemic. I hope to share a bit about it later this month during my Poetry Corner.
I am now reading Chanel Cleeton's The Most Beautiful Girl in Cuba (The Cuba Saga #4), which grabbed me right away. I have not read any of the earlier books in the series, but that has not been an issue. Each of the books feature different protagonists.
Mouse and I are in the middle of Tales of a Not-So-Dorky Drama Queen (Dork Diaries #9) by Rachel Renée Russell. There was one day this week in which Mouse decided to give me a break from reading with her (but really because she wanted to start a new Nancy Drew Clue Crew book). It was right before we jumped into the part of the book where Nikki's arch-nemesis, Mackenzie takes over writing the diary. So, even though I thanked my daughter for her thoughtfulness, internally I was wishing she'd picked a between-books moment instead. My wait did not last long fortunately, and we are now well into Makenzie's not-so-kind diary entries.
Next up I am considering reading The Borrow a Bookshop Holiday by Kiley Dunbar, which sounds like a dream come true vacation for booklovers.
What I Am Watching: My family and I recently watched Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. I have not yet read the book, but we were looking for a movie to watch and that one sounded good. It took a moment for all of us to settle into, but we all enjoyed it in the end.
This past month I watched the Marvel show Inhumans on Disney+. It runs for only a season, and I can see why. I really liked Lockjaw (because who would not love a giant pug that can transport people anywhere in a flash?). Other than him, the show was not very memorable.
I have reached the end of Supernatural. There were tears. I can see why so many people thought there was no need for that final episode. I have mixed feelings about it myself. I take comfort knowing I can re-watch the show any time I want to.
Having caught up on Vampire Diaries and The Originals this past summer, I decided to start at the beginning of Legacies again. I had seen the first season awhile ago, which is what spurred my re-watch of The Vampire Diaries. Even my husband has gotten into Legacies this time around. I don't know what it is about these shows--call them my guilty pleasures.
My husband and I are really enjoying The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, as I knew we would. I am so glad the filmmakers went all out on the quality and effort put into both this and WandaVision.
Off the blog: March seemed to fly. Mouse celebrated a birthday, and she and I had our semi-annual dental appointments. The whole family enjoyed a week off from work and school for a much needed spring break. My mom visited with us for a few days, and it was great to see her again after over a year apart. Saying goodbye was hard. Anjin, Mouse and I spent a day at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park in Escondido. Reservations were required to visit and capacity was strictly limited--it made for a not-so-crowded park which was really nice. Masks were required as well. Most of the indoor or close-proximity exhibits were closed, as was the tram tour, all of which we knew about going in. It was just nice to get away--this was our first big outing in a year. I feel like I'm coming out out of a cocoon. Slowly and cautiously.
My county moved into the Red Tier easing some of the pandemic restrictions. Now there's talk we may be moving to the Orange Tier soon, which will mean even less restrictions. I admit I am a bit nervous as I watch the virus rates rise again in other parts of the country and around the world. There comes a certain sense of security as more and more people become vaccinated, but every day I hear about friends or coworkers who themselves or family members are contracting the COVID virus, a couple of whom are in the hospital receiving treatment.
Easter always seems to creep up on me. We are not religious and so the day is more of a celebration of spring for us with an Easter twist. There will be baskets full of goodies, an egg hunt and way too much candy. Otherwise, it will be a quiet Sunday for us. For those of you who celebrate, I hope you have a Happy Easter!
The lioness keeping watch at the Safari Park
California Juniper Bonsai Tree (Harry Hirao), approximately 200-300 years old at the Safari Park
California Juniper Bonsai Tree (John Y. Naka), approximately 300-400 years old at the Safari Park
Kangaroo on the move at the Safari Park
Tell me what you have been up to! What are you reading, listening to and watching?
New to the Shelves in March:
E-book deals I could not resist:
Stolen Remains (Lady of Ashes #2) by Christine Trent
A Virtuous Death (Lady of Ashes #3) by Christine Trent
The Mourning Bells (Lady of Ashes #4) by Christine Trent
Death at the Abbey (Lady of Ashes #5) by Christine Trent
A Grave Celebration (Lady of Ashes #6) by Christine Trent
Fate's Edge (The Edge #3) by Ilona Andrews
Cocaine Blues (Phryne Fisher #1) by Kerry Greenwood
Mouse got a few books for her birthday last month:
Katie the Catsitter (#1) by Colleen A.F. Venable, illustrated by Stephanie Yue
Hannah Saves the World by A.M. Luzzader, illustrated by Chadd VanZanten
Anne of Green Gables: A Graphic Novel adapted by Mariah Marsden, illustrated by Brenna Thummler (original story by L.M. Montegomery)
Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy by Rey Terciero, illustrated by Bre Indigo
Girl with the Silver Eyes by Willo Davis Roberts
The Secret Lake by Karen Inglis
The Forbidden Library (#1) by Django Wexler
Summer of the Woods (Virginia Mystery #1) by Steven K. Smith
We made our first trip to an actual Barnes and Noble store in over a year. I got one book for myself and my daughter chose four of her own:
The Girl with the Louding Voice by Abi Daré
Alice in Wonderland & Through the Looking-Glass adapted by Eva Mason,
original by Lewis Carroll
Tales from a Not-So-Perfect Pet Sitter (Dork Diaries #10) by Rachel Renée Russell
Tales from a Not-So-Friendly Frenemy (Dork Diaries #11) by Rachel Renée Russell
Tales from a Not-So-Secret Catastrophe (Dork Diaries #12) by Rachel Renée Russell
Here is what I finished reading in March:
- Tales from a Not-So-Happy Heartbreaker (Dork Diaries #6) by Rachel Renée Russell
- The Gilded Ones (Deathless #1) by Namina Forna
- The Arrangement (Plainclothes Tootsie #1) by M. Ravenel
- Tales from a Not-So-Glam TV Star (Dork Diaries #7) by Rachel Renée Russell
- The Memory Collectors by Kim Neville
- The Lost Apothecary by Sarah Penner
- Passiflora by Kathy Davis
- Tales from a Not-So-Happily Ever After (Dork Diaries #8) by Rachel Renée Russell
- Arsenic and Adobo (Tita Rosie's Kitchen #1) by Mia P. Manansala
- From the Inside: The Inner Soul of a Young Poet by Thanvi Voruganti
March is always a busy month for me life-wise and and this year was no different. As a result, I stepped away from my blog for a bit and had a nice break. I did not get to focus on review writing like I planned and so have some major catching up to do. I might end up doing some extra mini-reviews, but we'll see. It was another great reading month in terms of the books I chose to read and the books I read with Mouse. There was not a book I did not enjoy. The Gilded Ones was as good as I hoped it would be, and while The Memory Collectors got off to a slow start, I really enjoyed it in the end. The Lost Apothecary was amazing. The Arrangement and Arsenic and Adobo left this mystery reader looking forward to more. I also fit in two poignant poetry collections, which I look forward to telling you about later this month.
This Past March In Reading Mews:
- Waiting to Read Wednesday: Libertie / Murder by the Page / The Graveyard Book
- Where Is Your Bookmark? (Tootsie Rolls, Spine Poetry & BBHOP - How Books Change Me)
- Weekly Mews: Wrapping Up February & Looking Forward to March
- Bookish Mewsings: The Wife Upstairs by Rachel Hawkins
- Waiting to Read Wednesday: Anywhere for You / The Last Bookshop in London / Phantoms & Felonies / If Today Be Sweet
- Where Is Your Bookmark? (What I Was Reading Then and Now / Time Travel Connect 5 / BBHOP Fun]
- Waiting to Read Wednesday: Broken / The Last Windwitch / The Unkindness of Ravens / Furiously Happy
- Waiting to Read Wednesday: Witches Steeped in Gold / Hour of the Witch / The Witches of New York
How was your March? Do you have anything planned for this month?
Thank you for helping me decide what book from my TBR collection I should read next:
Because Reading. It’s a fun way to choose a book from your TBR pile to read. The 1st Saturday of every month, I will list 3 books I am considering reading and take a poll as to which you think I should read. I will read the winner that month. My review will follow (unfortunately, not likely in the same month, but eventually--that's all I can promise).
As I considered what three books to offer for your consideration this month, my eyes fell on my shelf of unread novels written in verse. Two of these lost in a previous poll. Maybe one of them will be the winner this round. I look forward to seeing which one you pick for me to read this month!
Jacqueline Woodson, one of today's finest writers, tells the moving story of her childhood in mesmerizing verse.
Raised in South Carolina and New York, Woodson always felt halfway home in each place. In vivid poems, she shares what it was like to grow up as an African American in the 1960s and 1970s, living with the remnants of Jim Crow and her growing awareness of the Civil Rights movement. Touching and powerful, each poem is both accessible and emotionally charged, each line a glimpse into a child’s soul as she searches for her place in the world. Woodson’s eloquent poetry also reflects the joy of finding her voice through writing stories, despite the fact that she struggled with reading as a child. Her love of stories inspired her and stayed with her, creating the first sparks of the gifted writer she was to become. [Goodreads Summary]
Padma Venkatraman’s inspiring story of a young girl’s struggle to regain her passion and find a new peace is told lyrically through verse that captures the beauty and mystery of India and the ancient bharatanatyam dance form. This is a stunning novel about spiritual awakening, the power of art, and above all, the courage and resilience of the human spirit.
Veda, a classical dance prodigy in India, lives and breathes dance—so when an accident leaves her a below-knee amputee, her dreams are shattered. For a girl who’s grown used to receiving applause for her dance prowess and flexibility, adjusting to a prosthetic leg is painful and humbling. But Veda refuses to let her disability rob her of her dreams, and she starts all over again, taking beginner classes with the youngest dancers. Then Veda meets Govinda, a young man who approaches dance as a spiritual pursuit. As their relationship deepens, Veda reconnects with the world around her, and begins to discover who she is and what dance truly means to her. [Goodreads Summary]
Xiomara Batista feels unheard and unable to hide in her Harlem neighborhood. Ever since her body grew into curves, she has learned to let her fists and her fierceness do the talking.
But Xiomara has plenty she wants to say, and she pours all her frustration and passion onto the pages of a leather notebook, reciting the words to herself like prayers—especially after she catches feelings for a boy in her bio class named Aman, who her family can never know about. With Mami’s determination to force her daughter to obey the laws of the church, Xiomara understands that her thoughts are best kept to herself.
So when she is invited to join her school’s slam poetry club, she doesn’t know how she could ever attend without her mami finding out, much less speak her words out loud. But still, she can’t stop thinking about performing her poems.
Because in the face of a world that may not want to hear her, Xiomara refuses to be silent. [Goodreads Summary]
Thank you for voting! I hope you all have a wonderful week! Happy Reading!
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