October 2019 Wrap Up

Anyone reading or following this blog will have noticed that the posts going up lately are not really current. The last several months of 2019 got busy for me and I just didn’t have much time or energy to devote to this blog but I was still coming up with ideas and things to post. So at the start of 2020, my goal for the blog is to catch up on these older posts and then get to a point where I can post more current things.

In October I read a total of eight books, three which were graphic novels and one audio book.

29496076Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann is a historical nonfiction book about the murders in the Osage Indian Nation in the 1920s and the creation of the FBI. During this time multiple members of the Osage tribe where being killed without many people noticing or caring. When the death toll reached a certain point the newly created FBI got involved in the case that became their first major homicide investigation. These murders where carried out many people of the community in an attempt to gain access to the oil head rights owned by the tribe. The book contains information both on the events happening in Oklahoma with the tribes and the general creation of the FBI but puts more focus on what was happening in Oklahoma and the investigation here. A fairly quick read but is probably more interesting to those who already study this history or want to know more. 

18659623Through the Woods by Emily Carroll is a graphic novel of creepy and scary short stories. None of the stories are incredibly scary but are very atmospheric and its a great read for October around Halloween. The illustrations are beautiful and the stories stick with you as they invoke images and stories from childhood.



8181494The Lost Crown by Sarah Miller is a young adult historical fiction novel following the life of the Russian royal family the Romanov’s. The book is written from the perspective of the four daughters of the Tsar: Olga, Tatiana, Maria and Anastasia. The book starts when their lives are great during their childhoods and progresses through World War I and the Russian Revolution. Though it is written for a young adult audience the book does not shy away from the tragedy that befell this family. Well written and researched for the right audience.. As an adult there where parts that felt a little too young and bored me at times.

42286257._SX318_Sadie by Courtney Summer is a young adult mystery novel about a girl named Sadie who disappeared after her sisters death. Sadie is attempting to bring her sisters killer to justice by finding him and killing him herself. When radio host West McCray hears about Sadie, he starts a podcast retracing Sadie’s steps to find out what happen and maybe find her. I read this as an audio book which is amazing. The story is incredibly gripping and makes you want to finish it but the topics the story handles makes it hard to read. As you see what Sadie did to try to protect her sister Mattie from a man who just wanted to hurt them. About two hours to the end of the audio book was the hardest part to finish, I wanted to know what would happen but I was worried about Sadie and I just wanted her to be okay. If you can, try the audio book as it is very well done.


Rolling in the Deep by Mira Grant is a horror novella about a research vessel going out and trying to find mermaids. This was a reread for me on my phone while waiting for an appointment. I have a full review posted already but its still as good as it was the first time I read it.



3496352629237221Saga vol 8 and vol 9 by Brian K Vaughan and Fiona Staples are the last two currently published graphic novels of the Saga series. I don’t want to post spoilers here and I do plan to have a full series review with spoilers so I don’t want to say much. These volumes where very good but hard to get through given some of the topics mentioned and who lives and dies. I do love that these characters that have been forced into this situation are slowly becoming a family that cares about each other.  

21434924The last book that I read this month was Doctor Who: The Secret Lives of Monsters by Justin Richards. This is a coffee table type book with information and pictures about the monsters in Doctor Who and how they were created. Its written in a way that both acts like these monsters are real but also talks about how they were created for the show with behind the scenes information. Good book for anyone who is a major fan of Doctor Who.

August 2019 Wrap Up

As I mentioned in other post I’m currently catching up on all the post the should have gone up earlier this year. However, the past couple of months have just been very busy and not all that great either so I just didn’t want to work on this blog. These things in my personal life have also meant until recently that I wasn’t reading very much.

Sometimes, I also review video games, movies, and TV shows. Lately, I haven’t finished any video games and have only been watching ghost hunting shows and documentaries. Mostly things that I don’t have to think about much while watching.

In August I read three books, two coffee table type and one audio book.

36068753._SX318_The first book I read was Harry Potter: A Journey Through A History of Magic. This book gives information on the history of magic in our real world and things that inspired J K Rowling. It beautifully illustrated and includes some new and interesting information that I didn’t know. However, this book specifically feels more geared to younger readers and includes activities for kids.5_Star_Rating_System_3_and_a_half_stars


39983687._SX318_The next was Harry Potter: A History of Magic which is almost the same book as A Journey Through A History of Magic. However, this one is written for a older  audience as there is more general information. Its better organized with wonderful photos and artwork to add to the experience of the book. Both of these books are more coffee table books designed for their aesthetics more than the information contained within. However, they are wonderful books for any Harry Potter fan.5_Star_Rating_System_4_stars



reid_9781524798628_jkt_all_r1.inddThe last book I read in August was Daisy Jones and The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid. I read this as an audio book which is not my preferred format for reading but works very well with this story. Daisy Jones and The Six is setup in an oral history/interview style of writing and follows the story of the rise of the band The Six and their album with Daisy Jones. Beautifully written the story feels like a real band from the 70’s and all the things associated with being in a rock band. The interview style allows the reader to get both the general information and story as well as deep insight of each of the band members feelings and how everyone perceives events differently. Daisy Jones is both an amazing and tragic character and I loved her interactions with the rest of the characters especially Billy Dunne and Karen.5_Star_Rating_System_4_stars

August 2019 Owl Crate

Owl Crate is a young adult book subscription box where every month you receive one new hardcover book and an assortment of bookish goodies connected to the monthly theme. Some of these items are very practical and some are better suited as decor or for a pin/builtin board. August’s theme is Storms and Seas.IMG_0649

Each box includes different bookish goodies that fit the theme of the month and are connected to other books.This months bookish items include bath salts inspired by the Little Mermaid, a wooden tassel bookmark inspired by Daughter of the Pirate King, a tea light candle lantern, a metal pencil case inspired by The Scorpio Races, and some loose leaf tea inspired by the Sea Witch.

Every month Owl Crate has a new young adult hardback book that has an exclusive cover, is signed and comes with a letter from the author. The enamel pin the is in every box is also inspired by that months book.The book this month is House of Salt and Sorrows by Erin A Craig. Flowing a family living in a manor by the sea when several of the families daughters die the rest of the family feels like they are cursed. House of Salt and Sorrows is a retelling of the Twelve Dancing Princess fairy tale that add in a ghost story and murder mystery elements. Our main character Annaleigh is starting to believe that the deaths of her sisters were not accidents and she must find out truth before the darkness of her family claims her.  This month a matching book mark was also included.IMG_0650

September’s theme is Fear the Night.

May 2019 Illumicrate

IMG_0526So in May I decided to try a new book subscription box which was Illumicrate. Illumicrate is a monthly book subscription box that focuses mainly on young adult titles. When I heard that the May book was going to be Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff I knew I had to try and order the box. May’s theme is The Final Frontier.IMG_0527

This is my first time ordering this box and this month was very good. The bookish items included a Lunar Chronicles cooler bag/lunch bag, an Illuminae pillowcase with Kady and Ezra on one side and AIDAN quotes on the other, a Red Rising inspired luggage tag, a Squad 312 pouch to use for glasses or phone, some space themed sticky notes, and a collectible magnetic coin featuring Kady Grant. The box also included two extra book chapter samplers from the books The Furies by Katie Lowe and Emily Eternal by M.G. Wheaton. I’ve never been a big fan of chapter samplers but I know some people like them.

The book is Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff. The Illumicrate edition is signed, has a slightly changed cover and pink sprayed edges, and comes with a letter from the authors. I don’t think that I could ever describe the book better than the official summary from Goodreads so I have added that here: The year is 2380, and the graduating cadets of Aurora Academy are being assigned their first missions. Star pupil Tyler Jones is ready to recruit the squad of his dreams, but his own boneheaded heroism sees him stuck with the dregs nobody else in the Academy would touch…

A cocky diplomat with a black belt in sarcasm
A sociopath scientist with a fondness for shooting her bunkmates
A smart-ass techwiz with the galaxy’s biggest chip on his shoulder
An alien warrior with anger management issues
A tomboy pilot who’s totally not into him, in case you were wondering

And Ty’s squad isn’t even his biggest problem—that’d be Aurora Jie-Lin O’Malley, the girl he’s just rescued from interdimensional space. Trapped in cryo-sleep for two centuries, Auri is a girl out of time and out of her depth. But she could be the catalyst that starts a war millions of years in the making, and Tyler’s squad of losers, discipline-cases and misfits might just be the last hope for the entire galaxy.

They’re not the heroes we deserve. They’re just the ones we could find. Nobody panic.IMG_0529

The book sounds amazing and I hope to read it soon. I really liked this box but at the moment I don’t think I will be subscribing to it. I do intend to keep up to date on their special edition books and boxes and I might buy those in the future.


Owl Crate June 2019

Owl Crate is a young adult book subscription box where every month you receive one new hardcover book and an assortment of bookish goodies connected to the monthly theme. Some of these items are very practical and others are better suited as decor or for a pin/builtin board. June’s theme was Libraries of Wonder.IMG_0544

This time there where fewer bookish goodies but they were a higher quality and I assume more expensive for this month which I prefer. I would rather get fewer high quality practical items than more items that are cheap and I don’t know what to do with them. The bookish items included a gel pen shaped like a key, a coaster set with quotes about libraries on them, a tote bag inspired by Strange the Dreamer, some coffee from Book Beau Brew inspired by Bell’s Library, and a set of metal bookends inspired by the Chronicles of Narnia. Over the months that I’ve received Owl Crate most of the boxes get better each month with better items.

Each monthly box includes a new hard back book that has an exclusive cover, an author letter, and the book is signed by the author. Also the enamel pin included with each box is inspired by the book. This months book is Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson. Sorcery of Thorns follows Elisabeth who works at a library that contains magical and dangerous grimoires where she attempts to complete her apprenticeship. When she is thrust into a plan to sabotage the library she must team up with a sorcerer and his demonic servant on a journey to save the library while questioning everything she knows. This is Margaret Rogerson’s second book and it sound very interesting.IMG_0551

July’s theme is Tournaments and Trials.


June 2019 Wrap Up

June has been a pretty good month. I read 7 books and I’ve started a play though of Final Fantasy 7 so I can have it finished before the remake comes out next year.


31216051Caught in the Revolution: Witnesses to the Fall of Imperial Russia by Helen Rappaport is a historical nonfiction book that uses accounts of foreigners in Russia at the time of the Revolution to show the reality of what happen in Petrograd. In general, its a quick read because Rappaport writes the account more like a novel than a historical account just giving facts. Though the beginning of the book is more entertaining because no one knows exactly whats going on and eye witness accounts are more interesting to read. As the book goes on its more about politics which can be boring. There is almost no mention of the Romanov family in the book so this historical account is best suited for a reader that has some back ground in this period of Russian history but wants either more information or a different perspective of the events. Overall, the accounts are woven together well to give the reader the most well rounded timeline of events but it slows down at times when it focuses more on the day to day events and lives of these people as important things are not going on. 3/5 starts.

7968243Cleopatra: A Life by Stacy Schiff is a historical nonfiction book that attempts to separate the fact from fiction of Cleopatra’s life and tells her story from childhood to her death. The major focus of the book is Cleopatra’s rise to power, how she kept that power, and her relationships with Julius Caesar and Mark Anthony. Her story is deeply intertwined with the actions and events of Rome and the Roman empire. At times the book seems to focus more on Rome than Cleopatra which makes reading some chapters very slow. Given the lack of historical sources from Egypt and Cleopatra more information must be taken from Roman sources which often were written by her detractors though Schiff does a great job at attempting to separate what really happened and the embellishments of those who had no love for her. Cleopatra is much more than the myth and stories that pop culture loves to give us and this book is a good resource for those wanting more of the truth. 3.5/5 stars

46194335._SY475_Macbeth by William Shakespeare is a tragedy where Macbeth kills his king after three witches tell him that it is his destiny to be king. He and his wife are slowly driven mad by their actions and Macbeth is eventually killed. Macbeth is my favorite Shakespeare because its never stated whether Macbeth acts because of predetermined fate or is it his ambitions that lead to his raise and fall. I don’t read many classics on my own because I often feel like I’m missing something but Macbeth is still good. However, given that this is meant to be a play and viewed instead of read I do feel like there is something lost by not seeing it preformed. 3.5/5 stars

MementoMemento by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff is an Illuminae Files novella that was a pre-order bonus when you pre-ordered Aurora Rising. The novella is set primarily before the events of Illuminae and focuses on the AIDAN the learning AI that is on the Alexander battleship and his interactions with the crew members, specifically Olivia Klein. Since the novella is set mostly before AIDAN is damaged in battle it shows how he learns and what information allowed him to become rouge in the rest of the series. Its a fun story that adds more to the world of the Illuminae Files but is not needed to understand the rest of the series. However, many fans, myself included, love AIDAN and consider him one of the best characters of the series so more of him is always good. 5/5 stars.

Saga vol. 1-3 by Brian K Vaughan and Fiona Staples is a graphic novel series following Marko and Alana, lovers from two warring societies who have a child together and the whole galaxy is out to destroy their family. The story is told to the reader from Hazel’s telling her story to the audience which allows information to be add in that the characters might not know. This is a reread for me so that I can catch up and finish the 9 volumes currently out. I still love the story but I feel like some of the nudity and graphic content is there for shock value and doesn’t add much to the story. But at the same time it doesn’t put me off reading it either, so take that as you will. When I have finished all nine volumes I will be doing a full review of the entire series. 5/5 stars


ff7Since E3 was in June I’m excited for all the new games coming out but especially the Final Fantasy 7 remake. Final Fantasy 7 is one of my favorite games and since we now have a release date for the remake I have gone back and starting playing the original again. When I was younger I got about half way through the game but never finished it so I’m going back to play it in its entirety before the remake so I can see what is changed. I’m playing it on my PS4 which means some of the PC game cheats are available. Though I don’t think its the best way to play the game with cheats activated they are fun to play around with.

May 2019 Owl Crate

Owl Crate is a young adult book subscription box where every month you receive one new hardcover book and an assortment of bookish goodies connected to the monthly theme. Some of these items are very practical and others are better suited as decor or for a pin/builtin board. May’s theme was Epic Adventures.IMG_0455

Lately Owl Crate seems to be including more practical items that fit the months theme. For Epic Adventures the bookish goodies included a vinyl sticker from Howls Moving Castle, a sleep mask with a quote from A Court of Mist and Fury, a passport wallet featuring a quote from the Hobbit, and a water bottle inspired by Stardust. The largest item was a full sized pillow cover inspired by A Darker Shade of Magic.

The book this month was We Hunt the Flame by Hafsah Faizal. Which follows Zafira a hunter who disguises herself as a man to brave the cursed forest to find food for her people and Naisr the Prince of Death. If their secrets are found out everything will be in jeopardy but when their paths collide the prize they seek may be the biggest threat of all. I don’t know much about this book but it sounds like a fantasy story that I will like. All Owl Crate editions of books come signed with exclusive covers. This month, character art work was also included and the enamel pin each month is inspired by the book.IMG_0461

June’s theme is Libraries of Wonder and if the book is what I think it is this should be a very good box.

Fae Crate March 2019

IMG_0361So in March I decided to try a new book subscription box which was Fae Create’s anniversary box. Fae Crate is a young adult book subscription box that focuses on fantasy and science fiction. Unlike some book boxes Fae Crate has three options to choose from: a shirt only box (Solitary Crate), a book and goodies box (Unseelie Crate), and a box that includes the shirt, book, and all the bookish goodies (Seelie Crate). For my first box I choose the Unseelie Crate without the shirt as I do have trouble ordering clothes online sometimes due to my height and body shape.IMG_0359

Sadly, I was a little disappointed with this box especially since it was their one year anniversary box. The smaller bookish goodies in the box where an iron on patch inspired by the Winner’s Curse, a record coaster set inspired by Wintersong, an Outlander magnet, a Caraval book sticker and an art Polaroid from A Court of Thrones and Roses. The two bigger items besides the book where a Snow globe inspired by A Muse of Nightmares and a Watch necklace from the book series Air Awakens. To me while none of these items where bad, most of them felt cheep and like they were trying to find things to fill the box with. Which I don’t like given Fae Crate is more expensive than some of the other book boxes.

The book is Vortex Visions by Elise Kova which has a beautiful dust jacket and art work on the inside of it as well as an embossed cover. The story follows Vi Solaris who is the heir to an Empire she doesn’t know and wants to reunite with her family.  With powers she shouldn’t have and can’t control she meets a stranger that might be able to help her and save the world. I have never heard of this book before but it sounds interesting. Fae Crate does seem to include books that are not the most hyped so if your trying to find new books people might not be talking about this might be the box for you. Also Fae Crate does include a eBook download in each months box which adds more value when the items might not be the best. This months eBook was The Body Electric by Beth Revis.

For those interested Fae Crate does special book “hangover” recovery boxes for some popular and highly anticipated books throughout the year as well as monthly boxes. For me, I have bought a hangover crate but not any more of the monthly boxes as none of them have peaked my interest again.

May 2019 Wrap Up

I was very busy last month and didn’t get much done for the blog so I also have blacklisted post to finish and post. May has been a good month though somewhat stressful.


I have read 3 books this month and it was a much better month for me then the last couple.

40776737Alien Echo by Mira Grant is a young adult book set in the Alien franchise and is cannon to the rest of the series. It follows the story of twin sisters, Olivia and Viola, on a new world where their parents work as xenobiolgists but when an Alien threat that no one has ever seen rips their world apart they must adapt to survive. The book stars out slow like most movies in the alien franchise. For the first 90 pages or so its more of a teen drama set on a alien world than a science fiction or horror story but when the Xenomorphs arrive it become a true Alien story with all the problems that entails. The thing about Mira Grant books is there is always a twist that changes everything that makes me love the book more or makes me fall in love with a book that doesn’t have the greatest beginning. The characters are interesting and well written for the world though there is some romantic drama that is over done near the beginning and if you know the Alien franchise you know whats coming. So there doesn’t see to be a point to it and the slang is little over used. Considering the characters are teenagers shove into a situation that no one can predict with Aliens that are evolving to be better killers most of the reactions make sense. The action of the characters worked and were as though out as the situation allowed for and the book overall fits within the rest of the Alien Franchise.5_Star_Rating_System_3_and_a_half_stars 

260047The Second Evil by R L Stine is the second book in the Fear Street Cheerleaders saga. We follow Corky Corcoran after the events of book one where she is still dealing with the death of her sister and the evil spirit that attempted to kill both of them. Corky is trying to put Bobbi’s death behind her and live as normal of a life as possible with the Shadyside cheer leading squad. However, it becomes apparent that the evil spirit is not done with her yet and people start dying again. This is a reread for me but since I read these books back in junior high I don’t remember much of what happen though I do remember not liking this one much even back then. Though it continues the story from the first book there are tons of plot thread added to this one that don’t really go anywhere- from Jennifer’s bother blaming her death on Corky to a girl related to Sarah Fear the book is constantly trying to convince you that multiple people could be the evil spirit. By the time book ends and tells you what really going on its not the most interesting take. The evil seems to be defeated once again but we all know that its really not and will continue to terrorize everyone in the next book. 5_Star_Rating_System_2_stars

38644528Final Fantasy VII: On the Way to a Smile by Kazushige Nojima is a prequel novella to the Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children movie and is set in the years following the end of the game. This novella expects you to either have played the game or know enough that it doesn’t need to take the time to introduce characters, places, or past events. This is a book written and designed for fans of the game and will make no sense to anyone who is not a fan. Though not the best written work it does give the reader insight into the emotions and actions of all of our favorite characters following the end of the game. The novella is broken up into six main sections each following a different character or group in the after math of the lifesteam destroying meteor and the defeat of Sephiroth. These sections are broken up by sections in the lifestream which seem to be Sephiroth’s and Arith’s thoughts and how they are trying to harm and help our heroes. The main thing this story focuses on is the guilt that these survivors have even though they are heroes that saved the world and what do they do after that. If you are a fan I would recommend reading it once, either before or after watching the movie. I love this series and now I want the remake of the game even more. 5_Star_Rating_System_4_stars

March 2019 Wrap Up

So March was a very busy month for me, so I didn’t read very much but I did watch some TV shows and movies.


34895950The only book I read this month was The Tea Dragon Society by Katie O’Neill. The Tea Dragon Society is a short graphic novel set in a fantasy world where tea leaves are harvested from dragons. The story follows two young girls, Greta and Minette, who are learning about tea dragons and how to take care of them. It’s a beautifully illustrated story inspired by anime and manga with very unique fantasy concepts. Many of the characters are a combination of different fantasy races and use different fantasy elements. I would like to see the story continue as this first book is so short at only 72 pages there isn’t much time to connect with and learn everything about the characters. 3.5/5 stars.

TV Shows:

clonewarsI finally finished the Star Wars: The Clone Wars TV show which will be getting a continuation on Disney’s new streaming service that is supposed to come out sometime in 2019. The Clone Wars show is set in between the Clone Wars and Revenge of the Sith movie and does fix some of the problem that the prequel movies have. The big thing is it gives much more information about the Clone Wars and fleshed out most of the bigger relationship from the movies. This show made me believe that Obi-Wan did consider Anakin his brother and the relationship between Anakin and Padme is much better and is given time to grow. Anakin is given a padawan in Ahsoka Tano. Ahsoka is an amazing character but also allows the audience to see Anakin as a leader and in different stories and positions from the movies. However, there are some episodes that are just not that good and can be skipped without missing any plot or story elements. I would recommend not watch most to the episodes that feature Jar Jar or primarily focus on the droids. Also the show was not originally released in chronological order so there are two ways to watch it, episode release order or chronological. I would recommend watching the show in chronological order as it gives you a better sense of the state of the Jedi during the Clone Wars but before Revenge of the Sith.


Captain_Marvel_posterSo I saw Captain Marvel and I liked it, I do have a full review here so I won’t go completely in-depth. As the newest MCU movie and connected to Avengers: Endgame I would recommend going to see it but it’s also a good movie that can be understood without having seen any of the other Marvel movies. Connections to other MCU movies are mostly in little Easter eggs that you will understand if you’ve seen some of the other movies but they don’t detract from the story being told. I loved seeing a younger Nick Fury and how the Shield that we know from the other movies started. All of the acting is great and while the movie is funny none of the jokes become too much and make it feel like a comedy. However, many of the jokes will not connect if the 90’s references are not understood. Ultimately, it’s a movie about a woman realizing and coming into her own power.

Cloverfield_paradox_posterThis month I also finally set down and watched The Cloverfield Paradox which I liked the most out of the Cloverfield movies so far. The movie starts out with some info dumping about how the earth is running out of power sources and so the world has sent a team to a space station to work with a massive particle accelerator to attempt to find a new power source. When the experiment works all hell breaks loose on the space station has they ended up breaking the fabric of reality. Though it is a science fiction movie I would classify it more as a body horror such as Alien or the Thing than just straight sci-fi. I’ve never loved any of the Cloverfield movies and this ones no exception though I do like it better than the others. In Cloverfield I felt like the characters were very annoying and I didn’t care what happen. It doesn’t help that I have never been a fan of found footage movies either. 10 Cloverfield Lane on the other hand was a movie that I like the concept of but found the movie as a whole very boring. So, I didn’t have high expectations for Cloverfield Paradox. Though I don’t think Paradox was needed as part of the Cloverfield series I did like the concept of the movie and I wasn’t bored. If any of the Cloverfield movie got direct squeals I would want it to be Paradox as I feel like it has the most that could be done with it given how the story and ending is set up. I do plan to post a full review so for all of my thoughts check that post.