Summer Wrap Up

This summer was incredibly long personally. I did get a lot of reading done though despite work, memorials, and finally taking a break. This season I got through 36 books, which felt really good for me. I also was a little more liberal with myself and not finishing books after I had started them. I had a pretty solid reading month. I enjoyed most of what I read, but there were very few stand outs. Over the month, I averaged 4.04 stars in the books that I finished. This felt pretty solid. I enjoyed most of the books I read. They were solid, but there were very few standouts for me personally, even in the ones where the books themselves were excellent.

Genre Breakdown:

Rating Breakdown:

RatingNumber of Books
2.0 – 2.5 Stars 2
2.51 – 3.0 Stars1
3.01 – 3.5 Stars7
3.51 – 4.0 Stars8
4.01 – 4.5 Stars7
4.51 – 5 Stars11

Standouts of the Season

Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas

Ash by Malinda Lo

Monstress Vol. 1 by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takenda

Monday’s Not Coming by Tiffany D. Jackson

Half Sick of Shadows by Laura Sebastian

Things I learned from my first concert back

This past weekend I went to my first concert since the pandemic first hit, and one of my first major concerts ever. It was outdoors in the city where my partner and I went to college. It was a progressive rock/metal concert. Due to the conditions of the world it was a dual headlining tour so that as many bands as possible could get back on tour, with limited outdoor venues around the country.

It was an incredibly fun experience. I did feel safe, but also I got to see one of my best friends and meet some other cool people. I will say that it could be incredibly overwhelming. Here are some things I will know to move into for the second.

  1. Your feet and legs will hurt. You will be standing. jumping, walking for a long time. This maybe in line, at the concert, or dealing with parking. Wear shoes that don’t kill you.
  2. Bring cash. You will want at least a beverage of some kind and the cards take long and hold up a line.
  3. You will feel gross at some point. Whether, god forbid, you have to go to the bathroom or it’s just the beer cans at your feet. My friend did get a drink dropped down the back of their legs while people were walking (it was not not funny).
  4. There is always a more hard-core fan. People are there for a good time and because they love the entertainment, and boy do they. Fan watching is so fun and you can always find someone more into it.
  5. There is space for you! Whether you are there for a hard-core most experience, to have a date night in the back, to listen to music bopping a long in the crowd, or something any where in the middle. There is space for you to enjoy the concert however you want to and people really seem to respect that because they are doing their own thing.

Books that focus on Education

Happy back to school season! School and education has always been such a major part of my life. For me there are a lot of aspects to an education, not just learning algebra and going to class. There is building a strong foundation to move forward, finding passion and deciding what you are excited about, and taking new opportunities through extra curriculars and chances provided to you. All the books below take place at a school, but focus in a different space of the education process.

Changing Your Life (Core Classes)

Princess Academy (series) by Shannon Hale – Middle Grade/Fantasy

We are Okay by Nina LaCour – Young Adult/Contemporary

Educated by Tara Westover – Adult/Autobiography

Following Passion (Field of Study)

The Glass Castle by Jeanette Wells – Adult/Autobiography

I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson – Young Adult/Contemporary

Truly Devious (series) by Maureen Johnson – Young Adult/Mystery

Taking Chances (Extracurriculars)

Again, but Better – New Adult/Contemporary

Check, Please! – Young Adult/Contemporary/Graphic Novel

Smash it! by Francina Simone – Young Adult/Contemporary

Only Murders in the Building: Hit or Miss

The Premise:

Welcome to the Arconia! This an apartment building with a stoic façade in New York where all our characters find themselves living. As three neighbors begin to connect over a love of true crime, specifically the same favorite podcast. After a suspicious death in the building they unite to investigate and live out their true crime fantasies. The jobless director (Short), the actor whose star is fading (Martin), and young renovator (Gomez) all have their own relationship to the crime and to the building.

Title Card of Only Murders in the Building

This is such a comedic take on true crime culture. It is a quirky character study that is shows itself through a dark comedy. I really enjoy Steve Martin and Martin Short’s chemistry they have such an ease together. I was really impressed by Selena Gomez’s ability to keep up with that duo. As far as the mystery it self goes, we don’t know that there is one. The story could go so many ways, including pure paranoia especially given each individual’s motivations for solving the “case”. I would definitely recommend checking out. Three episodes of the season’s ten are out now. The rest to be released weekly.

How to Watch: Hulu (streaming service)