December and January Book Haul

Many months ago, I had stated that I was only going to do seasonal book hauls because I don’t buy much books. Well my friends, that was a mothereffin lie. I have so many physical books/ebooks to show you. I can’t believe I acquired 22 books in only two months. I need to stop!!!

*the title of each book will lead you to the Goodreads page

Physical Fiction Books:

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Physical Poetry Books:

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  • Uncaged Wallflower by Jennae Cecelia
    Uncaged Wallflower is for those who feel trapped in the thoughts their minds produce, unable to express them with the rest of the world out of fear of critique or disagreement. For the people who need an extra dose of positivity in their day. This is not a poetry book for you to read and relate to in a sorrow filled way. It is for you to read and say yes, I can be better, and I will.
  • Bright Minds Empty Souls by Jennae Cecelia: 
    Bright Minds Empty Souls is for the hopeless romantics and those who need a friend to comfort their late night thoughts. It’s a book made with love about falling in and out of love with yourself, and others. Enjoy over 60 poems from Jennae’s second edition of, Bright Minds Empty Souls.
  • The Chaos of Longing by K.Y. Robinson
    The Chaos of Longing is a prose and poetry collection draped in raw honesty, ache, and eroticism. The collection explores trauma, love, heartbreak, and the realizations from it all. 
    The book is divided into four sections. “Inception” briefly examines formative years and its effects on how one loves. “Longing” reflects on love and sexuality. “Chaos” explores toxic relationships, unrequited love, and heartache. After chaos, there is order with self-love and healing poems in “epiphany”.
    Some content may be triggering.
  • Stuff I’ve Been Feeling Lately by Alicia Cook
    In Alicia Cook’s second poetic effort, designed in the style of an old mixtape, she sets her thoughts to a nostalgic tune. There is no Table of Contents. Instead, there is a “Track List,” making it easy to refer to them to your friends with a, “Hey did you read track seven?!” There are no chapters. Instead, the book is divided into two parts, or as one would say in the 90’s, two “sides.” Side A holds poetry that touches on all aspects of the human condition like life, death, love, moving on, evolving, growing up, hometowns, family dynamic, life after trauma, and make-ups and breakups. Side B holds the “remixes” of these poems, in the form of blackout poetry, also known as “found poetry.” Side B gives the material a fresh twist by creating new poetry out of Side A. There is also a very special surprise at the end of each track. Alicia decided to self publish this effort after leaving her publishing house. She views this book as her “independence” and official separation from that venture.
  • Rest in the Mourning by R.H. Sin
    The calm before and after the storm. Rest in the Mourning is a steady and profound stream of conscious thoughts and emotion. Documenting unhealthy relationships and why the heart ends up in the hands of those deemed unworthy. It speaks to the heart’s ability to hold on to relationships that no longer deserve our energy as well as what happens when we are ready to let go. Rest in the Mourning is about self-care and self-love.
  • Whiskey Words and a Shovel II by R.H. Sin:
    Real and raw, the voice of R. H. Sin delivers gritty, impassioned truths on matters of loving, living, and leaving in his second book of poetry.  Sin’s first book is a bestseller and continues to delight his one million followers.
    R.H. Sin’s second volume continues the passion and vigor of his previous publication. His stanzas inspire strength through the pure emotional energy and the vulnerability of his poems. Relationships, love, pain, and fortitude are powerfully rendered in his poetry, and his message of perseverance in the face of emotional turmoil cuts to the heart of modern-day life.
  • Broken Flowers by R.M. Drake
    “And you will go on / searching for the best of you / and you will never find it, / but that is the point.” This stunning collection of poems asks readers to keep on seeking – the journey is the destination. In this fifth installment from Robert M. Drake, the poet meditates on the subtle beauty of brokenness.
    I have a non spoiler book review here.

E-Books:


thoughts???? let’s chat in the comments! any of these on your TBR or on your read shelf?


Instagram: @chicnerdreads
Twitter: @ChicNerdReads
Goodreads: Gretchen (ChicNerdReads)

January Wrap-Up 2017

HI EVERYONE!!! How’s your day treating you so far? How about month? How’s the new year so far? Cause here in the USA we’re going through it and we need a miracle like yesterday. K thanks lol. Anyways, I read 3 books and 1 I’ve DNFed. Let’s jump right into what I’ve been reading and up to =)

What I Read:

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Broken Flowers by R.M. Drake ★★★★
Genre: Poetry
This is my second R.M. Drake. I love his writing and he talks a lot about loss and brokenness within yourself and relationships. I have a non-spoiler review with even some of the poems here.

 

 

 

 


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The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern ★★★★★
Genre: Adult, Fantasy, Romance
My favorite of the month!! What a magical world I got to live in for the days that I read this. This circus is everything I would love to visit and more! I have a full non spoiler book review here. I would love to reread this one day in the future and may be even see it as a movie adaptation. This one definitely deserves all the hype!

 

 


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Gilded Cage (Dark Gifts #1) by Vic James 
Genre: YA Fantasy/Dystopian
This is the one I DNFed. Not because it’s bad cause trust me, I was really liking it. However, with everything that is going on in the country I live (USA) which is very much like a dystopian novel at the moment, it was affecting my reading experiencing with this one. So I decided to put it down till I am ready to pick it up again.

 

 


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The You I’ve Never Known by Ellen Hopkins ★★★★ 
Genre: YA, Verse, Realistic Fiction, LGTBQ+
Definitely a heart wrenching novel about two girls that don’t even know each other but eventually cross paths. About knowing yourself, relationships, and family dynamic. I have a non spoiler review for this book here.

 

 

 


Poetry:
Another month where I know I didn’t post much poetry. And I’ll explain all of that in another post I have coming on Friday. Here’s what I did post in January though:
People I Once Knew – Part 15
so what do you think?
People I Once Knew – Part 16
women’s march
looking at human’s on my train ride
and we’re all just entertainers


Memes of the month:
I participated in some meme’s this month that mention other books that I’m excited for!
Waiting on Wednesday – The Seafarer’s Kiss
WWW Wednesday
Top Ten Tuesday – Graphic Novels


Exciting News!

I FINISHED MY FIRST DRAFT OF MY POETRY BOOK COMING THIS SUMMER!!!!!!!!!!!!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! I literally cried once I typed up the last poem. I cannot wait to share with you all more details in the next coming months! I can’t believe this is happening. I didn’t even have this book in mind till I was a few poems in and thought that I should just make a book out of it. I know I’m being vague but just give me some time, I will eventually share the synopsis, links, and all that good stuff coming in a few weeks. I’m still working on some things and haven’t set an official date but it’s looking like June =)

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what have you all beautiful human beings been up to? did you read any of these books? let’s talk in the comments!


Instagram: @chicnerdreads
Twitter: @ChicNerdReads
Goodreads: Gretchen (ChicNerdReads)

 

The You I’ve Never Known Spoiler Free Book Review

Title: The You I’ve Never Known
Author: Ellen Hopkins
Genre: YA, Verse, Realistic Fiction, LGBTQ+
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Book
Format: Hardcover
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

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I will not be placing a synopsis because it gives the whole plot and purpose of the book away. If you’re really interested in checking it out on Goodreads, then click here. I’m going to summarize the book the best way I can, however I really do recommend to start this one blind =)

Summary/Plot

Told by two different characters, Ariel and Maya. All Ariel knows is moving around the USA with her dad, she doesn’t know stability and staying in one place. She doesn’t know friendships, education, or a household. According to her dad, home is wherever the both of them are since Ariel’s mom abandoned them when she was little. However, for once in Ariel’s life, her and her dad (Mark) have stayed in Sonora, California for a little over a year and Ariel finally feels normal. Ariel has friends, she’s been to school for a full grade, she’s feeling optimistic about the future, and maybe her and her dad will stop moving around so much. Ariel is also shaken up because she’s experiencing internal battles with herself and sexuality. And having a father who’s a homophobe, living in Sonora that is super conservative, she doesn’t know who to talk to about these feelings she’s experiencing for both Monica and Gabe (I’ll get to them later on in the review).

Maya is trying to run away from her mother who happens to be obsessed with Scientology and Maya wants nothing to do with her and that “cult” as Maya likes to call it. She blames Scientology for changing her mom and her parents divorce. Maya cannot stand her mom because she can’t even have a relationship with her father. All of a sudden her father dies and she even goes to his funeral without consent of her mother because she would’ve refused. Maya’s mom wants to move them to LA to be a part of the Church of Scientology but Maya has other plans.

And somehow in all of this, Maya and Ariel meet and things take a turn.

Writing

I loved the writing! The book is written both in verse and prose but mostly verse. Ariel’s POV is verse and Maya’s POV is in prose. I don’t know if any of you know this but Ellen Hopkins is one of my all time favorite authors and a big inspiration to me because of the way she writes her books. As a poetry writer myself, Ellen is like my mom lol.

Ellen Hopkins uses different techniques when she writes in verse. Sometimes she’s saying two different things in the same page and I’m still trying to figure out HOW she does that. With a few words, Ellen Hopkins will paint you the world and characters with vivid emotions.

Characters

I feel like I touched based a little too much with Ariel and Maya in the summary/plot, therefore I will move onto the other characters in this book that we get to meet. I want to discuss a little on Ariel’s dad, Mark. I found him to be a complete asshole, however Ariel makes so many excuses for him and you can clearly see the abuse that is going on between child and father. Mark is an abusive father; physically, emotionally, and mentally. He is a very manipulative character. Not just to Ariel but his girlfriend Zelda as well. Both victims to his schemes and lies. Ariel always playing protector since it’s always been him and her and her dad always spoke so bad about Ariel’s mom and that she never questioned him. He  is very good in gaslighting.

We also get to meet “The Freak Club” which consist of Ariel, Monica, and Syrah. They call themselves that because they all have “dysfunctional” things going on. And I use quotation marks because not all is wrong. Monica is a Lesbian Mexican American who is not out to her family because she feels like her family wouldn’t accept it. I loved Monica’s character and even though her character felt just slightly stereotypical to me (the Latina bff who always has to say something in Spanish here and there to her non-spanish speaking friends, you know, in order to prove to us the reader that they’re Latinx), Ellen Hopkins wrote her really well. When Hopkins wrote in Spanish, she got the accents right and she even got the Mexican food right! It’s so important to me as a Latina myself that when people write about us, they get our language and culture correct. Monica and Syrah are both very supporting characters towards Ariel and what she’s going through with her internal struggle of bisexuality. Monica and Ariel have feelings for one another but Monica knows that Ariel is having a hard time. And I love that Monica is still willing to be there in the end for Ariel no matter what happens. I love the female friendships in this book because I feel like we don’t get much of that in YA. We definitely see a lot of Monica and Syrah throughout the book.

Gabe is introduced a little later in the book, he is Zelda’s (Mark’s girlfriend) nephew and he comes into town to stay a while with Zelda while he tries to figure some things out. Gabe and Ariel hit it off which confuses Ariel even more. Gabe, another supportive character is just a sweet charming guy trying to get by. He sees the abuse of Ariel’s father and tries to protect her but there’s only so much someone can do.

Thoughts

I loved this book. You might be wondering why I say love when I gave it a 4 star. The reason why I gave it a 4 star was because it got repetitive at times and I wish that what happened more towards the end was extended and the repetition was cut off. Ellen Hopkins writes truths in this book. She writes about how bisexuals are perceived and how even Ariel perceives herself because of social standards towards bi people. Ellen Hopkins also leaves a Authors Note talking about how she wrote this book based off her own experience which had me crying at the end. And I won’t discuss the authors note because it will lead to the spoiler and plot of the book. With Ariel moving so much and the way Ellen Hopkins talks about the instability of staying in one place and even sleeping in the car with her dad for weeks at a time, I asked myself about her health. Hopkins, covered all my questions about how her health was and even her lack of education. I liked the diversity of this book, Ellen never disappoints with her diverse cast of characters and their situations. Maya’s story was short but touching and to the point. Which is why I don’t talk much about her because her story is pretty much a major spoiler. The abuse that both Ariel and Maya experience in their own journeys are heart wrenching and sad. I would definitely recommend this book!

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Twitter: @ChicNerdReads
Goodreads: Gretchen (ChicNerdReads)

WWW Wednesday

Hi everyone! I thought I would participate in WWW Wednesday today. This meme is hosted by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. You can link your blog post to Sam’s website that way we can interact and find other bloggers =)

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The questions are:
1. What are you currently reading?
2. What did you recently finish reading?
3. What do you think you’ll read next?


What are you currently reading?

30258320I am currently reading Gilded Cage (Dark Gifts #1) by Vic James. So far I am really enjoying it and I’m hoping to finish it by (tomorrow) Thursday. Thankfully I got a ARC at NYCC/BookCon, this book is due to release on Valentines Day.

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Not all are free. Not all are equal. Not all will be saved.

Our world belongs to the Equals — aristocrats with magical gifts — and all commoners must serve them for ten years. But behind the gates of England’s grandest estate lies a power that could break the world. 

A girl thirsts for love and knowledge.

Abi is a servant to England’s most powerful family, but her spirit is free. So when she falls for one of the noble-born sons, Abi faces a terrible choice. Uncovering the family’s secrets might win her liberty, but will her heart pay the price? 

A boy dreams of revolution.

Abi’s brother, Luke, is enslaved in a brutal factory town. Far from his family and cruelly oppressed, he makes friends whose ideals could cost him everything. Now Luke has discovered there may be a power even greater than magic: revolution. 

And an aristocrat will remake the world with his dark gifts.

He is a shadow in the glittering world of the Equals, with mysterious powers no one else understands. But will he liberate—or destroy?


What did you recently finish reading?

13330943I recently finished The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. One of my favorite reads of 2017. This book was magical and beautiful. The world was fascinating and wonderful. I also love that it’s a standalone! I have a full non spoiler review for this book here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


What do you think you’ll read next?

30312837Ellen Hopkins came out with a new title “The You I’ve Never Known” which was released yesterday (1/24/2017) and since I took the day off as a “self care day”, I decided to hop into Barnes and Noble to buy it! I was going to read something else after Gilded Cage, however, I know myself. My mood instantly changed and I cannot wait to start The You I’ve Never Known. Ellen Hopkins is queen of writing in verse and writing about hard hitting topics in YA. Hopkins isn’t your lovey-dovey magic happy ending type of writer. I love that about her.

Synopsis from Goodreads:

How do you live your life if your past is based on a lie? A new novel in both verse and prose from #1 New York Times bestselling author, Ellen Hopkins.

For as long as she can remember, it’s been just Ariel and Dad. Ariel’s mom disappeared when she was a baby. Dad says home is wherever the two of them are, but Ariel is now seventeen and after years of new apartments, new schools, and new faces, all she wants is to put down some roots. Complicating things are Monica and Gabe, both of whom have stirred a different kind of desire.

Maya’s a teenager who’s run from an abusive mother right into the arms of an older man she thinks she can trust. But now she’s isolated with a baby on the way, and life’s getting more complicated than Maya ever could have imagined.

Ariel and Maya’s lives collide unexpectedly when Ariel’s mother shows up out of the blue with wild accusations: Ariel wasn’t abandoned. Her father kidnapped her fourteen years ago.

What is Ariel supposed to believe? Is it possible Dad’s woven her entire history into a tapestry of lies? How can she choose between the mother she’s been taught to mistrust and the father who has taken care of her all these years?

In bestselling author Ellen Hopkins’s deft hands, Ariel’s emotionally charged journey to find out the truth of who she really is balances beautifully with Maya’s story of loss and redemption. This is a memorable portrait of two young women trying to make sense of their lives and coming face to face with themselves—for both the last and the very first time.


what do you think of these titles? do you plan on reading any of them or have you? let’s chat in the comments!


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Twitter: @ChicNerdReads
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Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking The Spine. On every Wednesday you discuss a book that you are highly anticipating.

I’m kind of mad at myself because I completely forgot to mention this book at last weeks Top Ten Tuesday: 2017 Anticipated Releases because this author is like my Queen and Teacher of Verse lol. But at least she get’s her own post now, right? Thanks to Payton @ Payton’s Book Thoughts for the kindly reminder in her post lol. Check her blog out, she’s so cool and fun =)

This weeks pick is:

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The You I’ve Never Known
by Ellen Hopkins

Release Date: January 24th, 2017

Synopsis from Goodreads:

How do you live your life if your past is based on a lie? A new novel in both verse and prose from #1 New York Times bestselling author, Ellen Hopkins.

Arielle’s life is a blur of new apartments, new schools, and new faces. Since her mother abandoned the family, Arielle has lived nomadically with her father as he moves from job to job. All she’s ever wanted is to stay in one place for an entire school year, and it looks like she might finally get her wish. With a real friend, Monica, who might be even more than a friend soon, things are starting to look up.

But Arielle’s life is upended—and not by her father, but by her mom, who reveals that she never left Arielle. Instead, Arielle’s father kidnapped her, and her mom has been left searching ever since. She wants to take Arielle away, but Arielle has no connection with her mother, and despite everything, still loves her father. How can she choose between the mother she’s been taught to mistrust and the father who sewed that suspicion?


THAT SYNOPSIS!!! THAT COVER!!! OMGOMGOMGOMG!! I cannot wait to have this book in my hands and devour all of it. I’ve always loved Ellen Hopkins writing and she’s very honest with it all. Ellen Hopkins is known for her writing in verse. She’s also a YA Realistic Fiction writer. She does not hide the reality of situations, she does not give you happy cute stories. She gives you emotion filled writing that will have you crying and feeling sympathy for all these characters.

If you have yet to read any of her books, I would suggest reading Identical, Crank, Burned, and Tricks.

Have you read anything from Ellen Hopkins? What are your thoughts? Let’s chat in the comments!


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