New Year, New Beginnings!

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Hello, dear glorious readers! It’s us, Sarah and Faith at Sublime Reads  

Happy New Year! It’s been a wonderful six months since we’ve been introduced to the world of book blogging and from it, we have had so many new experiences! That being said, there’s always room for improvement. So, we’ve written down some of our goals and then by the end of 2016, we’re planning to reflect on them. You know that they say that New Year’s resolutions are never actually seen through until the end: but this year, we’re determined to accomplish these tasks, or at least try our best!

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RESOLUTION #1: Be more consistent.

S: I think that means posting to a schedule… or at least regularly. When it comes to book reviews, there are so many I want to write… but I never get around to doing them.

F: Oh stars. This one, is sometimes hard. There’s school work, then there’s extracurricular activities, then there’s parents who tell you to do stuff and trying to get an adequate amount of sleep. Time management is just a tool in life that we’ll have to master.

I should also point out that at times, I Google encouragements for motivation because when your name is Faith, often times people will tell you to “just have FAITH in yourself!” (They consequently believe that they are the most ingenious person to have ever walked on Earth… trust me. Or should I say, have faith in me. I’ve heard it more times than I’ve procrastinated.)

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RESOLUTION #2: Comment more.

S: This might just be me, but I feel really shy when commenting on other people’s blogs. It’s even worse when the posts I want to talk about are old. 😥 So this year, I want to be more outgoing and I want to participate even more 😄

F: Commenting is a pretty big part of blogging because it helps give feedback and it just gives you a nice fuzzy feeling to know that people are actually reading your stuff, no matter what it is. Of course, it also helps you to engage in the blogosphere so this year, I’m going to try to read and comment more on other blogs.

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RESOLUTION #3: Carpe Diem

S: We should definitely seize any bookish opportunities in 2016. That includes going to book festivals and asking for ARCs 😉 (No ARC envy though… that’s what we’re leaving in 2015)

F: Basically, we’re going to take more initiative to just do more. More bookish things and activities. Such as updating (and remembering) our Goodreads account more and especially, our Instagram account. (Yikes, we should definitely do something about that!!)

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RESOLUTION #4 Quality, not Quantity

S: Cutting back on the books we read isn’t necessarily bad… as long as the books we read are interesting and diverse. We should probably branch out to other genres 😀

F: This is exactly what I’ve learned from book reviewing. Before, I would try to read more so that I could review more… instead, I’ve realized that reading less material doesn’t mean reviewing less. It means taking the time to review more on the books that you have read! 🙂

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RESOLUTION #5: Branch out.

S: I have yet to review a middle grade novel… or a manga. Although, I swear, that will change!

F: In terms of trees and branches, we’re practically still a sapling. Luckily for us, trees are always growing! As for me, I was thinking about reviewing the occasional Korean drama and more book-related movies and DIYs! Just a more diverse array of blog posts. (But don’t worry, we’ll focus first on the book reviews!)

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RESOLUTION #6: Find the right design for us.

S: We need to find a theme and a look that we like. And we need to figure out our aesthetic. Something with watercolours….

F: Although our blog is ever-changing, we’re going to try to find a style that suits the both of us, and one that you will also hopefully enjoy!

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RESOLUTION #7: Refine our writing.

S: While our skills, whether it be critical thinking or just English in general, have improved, there’s still a long way to go 😀

F: We’re always trying to find ways to streamline my writing. But sometimes it’s a STRUGGLE. Usually I know what I’m trying to say, but don’t know how to say it. Then, I try to find a balance between finding my own voice while generally improving my English skills. It’s a pain when you’re done and you’re still dissatisfied with your writing… I guess I’ll also have to appreciate my own work more!

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RESOLUTION #8: Give back to our followers.

S: We recently reached over a 100 followers, which is quite amazing. We really don’t deserve you guys, so thank you to everyone ❤ Your support means the world to us!

F: To be honest, it’s easy to be envious of others’ follows but I’ve really recognized that their followers exist because of their hard work and effort that they’ve put into their blogs! This year, we would just like to take the time to appreciate everything we have achieved through book blogging and it’s really thanks to you. 🙂 It never gets old seeing a nice comment or getting a new follow, which really encourages us to write more! In the future, we would love to do a giveaway… one day it will happen. Thanks for a great six months of blogging!


 

If any of our resolutions apply to you, comment below! We’d love to hear about your new goals.

We’ll see you in the new year! 🙂

Carry On Fangirling: A Duo Book Review (Meme Edition)

Challenge of the day: Count how many times we lose coherence in this post.

Duo Book Review of Carry On and Fangirl (But mostly Carry On)


Fangirl
445 pages
Published : September 10th 2013 by St. Martin’s Press

Carry On
522 pages
Published : October 6th 2015 by St. Martin’s Griffin

Summaries (Taken from Goodreads):
FANGIRL:

A coming-of-age tale of fan fiction, family and first love. (S: YOU SEE THIS LINE? I’m instantly in loooooove F: Ugh, Sarah stop.)

Cath is a Simon Snow fan.

Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan… (F: Wow okay, me too. After Carry On.)

But for Cath, being a fan is her life—and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving.

Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fan fiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere. (S: Some obvious parallels to the Harry Potter fandom…)

Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to.

Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. She’s got a surly roommate with a charming, always-around boyfriend, a fiction-writing professor who thinks fan fiction is the end of the civilized world, a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words… And she can’t stop worrying about her dad, who’s loving and fragile and has never really been alone.

For Cath, the question is: Can she do this?

Can she make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? Writing her own stories?

And does she even want to move on if it means leaving Simon Snow behind?


CARRY ON:

Simon Snow is the worst chosen one who’s ever been chosen. (S: After reading the book, I second that)(F: Frankly, having power is different than wielding it.)

That’s what his roommate, Baz, says. And Baz might be evil and a vampire and a complete git, but he’s probably right. (S: Warning, there is a whole section of this review dedicated to Baz)

Half the time, Simon can’t even make his wand work, and the other half, he sets something on fire. His mentor’s avoiding him, his girlfriend broke up with him, and there’s a magic-eating monster running around wearing Simon’s face. Baz would be having a field day with all this, if he were here—it’s their last year at the Watford School of Magicks, and Simon’s infuriating nemesis didn’t even bother to show up.

Carry On is a ghost story, a love story, a mystery and a melodrama. It has just as much kissing and talking as you’d expect from a Rainbow Rowell story—but far, far more monsters.
(S: Summary cont’d — Carry On starts off as a totally Harry Potter ripoff, reads like the last book in the series, but by the end transforms into something totally different. And that’s not counting the top notch snogging – did we mention that romance?)


ACTUAL REVIEW PART

(All the memes are at the end)

Sarah: Originally, we were going to write individual reviews for both books, but after reading Carry On and (re)reading Fangirl, we’ve decided to mash these two complementary books.

Faith: Cath. Levi. Simon. Baz. After reading Carry On, you realize all the more how it plays a role in Fangirl. Reviewing them together just sort of made sense.

Before Carry On (BCO): Fangirl is great but who IS this Simon Snow? Is it basically just another name in the place of Harry Potter to avoid copyright infringement? (S: So true. I was rolling my eyes so hard)… Sorry but could I just skip these random Simon Snow parts?

I mean who cares…

Continue reading

The Real Neat Blog Award!

Mucho gracias to Amy at Curiouser and Curiouser for nominating us! (This has definitely been long over due!) Check out her incredibly interesting blog 😀

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1. Who is your favourite book/film/tv show character?

F: Leo Valdez hands down. And Percy. And Nine from Lorien Legacies. (A lot of people find him annoying but sometimes he’s just hilarious… and I too am sensing a pattern here. All of these three are the comic relief in action-y books.) Shahrzad (The Wrath and the Dawn) is also a great heroine.

S: Ummm… Cinder? Percy? Agnieszka? Humourous people in general? Am I allowed to list them by genre or book (and would you guys be willing to read a mile of writing)?

2. If you could choose to meet any famous person (alive or dead), who would you choose and why?

F: I’d meet poet Sarah Kay because her work inspires me to write and she does word play like some people play chess. 😉

S: JK Rowling because she WROTE HARRY POTTER, one of the most defining books of the past 2 and present 2 generations.

Elizabeth the Second? (Who am I kidding, I’m not even British.)

3. Are you a Harry Potter fan? Be honest.

F: I think we’ve established that I haven’t read enough of the books to be a legitimate hardcore fan. But I think I would be if I did finish the series. Right? There’s a lot of peer pressure though… (haha)

S: UM YES. YES YES YES YES. I even managed to infect some of my other friends into even more hardcore fans. For some reason, Faith seems immune ~ I’m still working on infecting her 😛

Did I mention how much I love her?

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Book Review: This is What Happy Looks Like

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This is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith

Published on April 2nd 2013 by Headline
Genre: Contemporary, romance, YA
404 pgs

Goodreads Summary:

If fate sent you an email, would you answer? 

When teenage movie star Graham Larkin accidentally sends small town girl Ellie O’Neill an email about his pet pig, the two seventeen-year-olds strike up a witty and unforgettable correspondence, discussing everything under the sun, except for their names or backgrounds.

Then Graham finds out that Ellie’s Maine hometown is the perfect location for his latest film, and he decides to take their relationship from online to in-person. But can a star as famous as Graham really start a relationship with an ordinary girl like Ellie? And why does Ellie want to avoid the media’s spotlight at all costs? Continue reading