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The Fantastical Bookshelf

Books upon books upon books.

Cinder | 1 Minute Reviews

Cinder by Marissa Meyer has been on my list of books to read for just about forever. If you don’t already know, it is a retelling of Cinderella set in the far future in what is now China. The main character, Cinder, is a cyborg and mechanic who is appointed to fix the emperor’s android. Cinder is the first book in a series by the name of The Lunar Chronicles.

This was one of my favorite things that I have read this year. I have this thing against space and sci-fi books, but I loved this so much! The plot is very fast-paced. You never want to put the book down, even if you don’t have time to read it, like me. The characters are also incredibly relatable, even though they live in a totally different world from the one we do. Marissa Meyer’s writing is something that is very easy to read, but is not lacking in quality.

If you are someone who enjoys sci-fi books or fairytale retellings or both, you will find yourself loving this. Also, the way this series is written is very interesting. Each book is written about a different main character, but they all weave together into one main plot. There are reintroductions of characters from Cinder into later books. I highly recommend all of the books in the series, if you are even the tiniest bit interested.

Also, let me know if you enjoy these quick reviews, and I will do more of them if you do. If you have read Cinder, also let me know, and let me know what you thought of it!

Happy reading,

Margaux

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Why I Love NaNoWriMo So Much

This is the second year that I have participated in NaNoWriMo, as some of you long-timers might know. This is also the second year that I’ve won, and written all 50,000 words. If you don’t know what NaNoWriMo is, it stands for National Novel Writing Month. It takes place in the month of November and brings writers from all over the world together and challenges them to write a first draft of a novel that is at least 50,000 words. It is a ridiculous challenge, but it one of the most fun months of the year for me.

One of the reasons that I love it so much is that NaNo gives writers a chance to meet other writers from all over the world. It has allowed me to meet new people at my school who I would have never met otherwise. You make friends and get to cheer other people on as we all struggle through the difficulties of writing together. It is like a sport’s team minus the sweat and exercise. Actually, scratch that, our hands are doing a lot of sweating from all of the typing.

The other reason that I love NaNo so much is it really gives me the opportunity to see what I’m capable of. Before November 2014, I had always wanted to write a novel, but I didn’t know where to start or what to do. NaNo gave me the chance to see that maybe I can do this whole writer thing.

As year two of NaNoWriMo comes to a close for me, I encourage you to think about writing. If you have ever considered NaNoWriMo, or writing a novel, just jump in. Give it your best shot. If you fail, that’s okay, just try again later. There is no wrong way to write. If there is one thing that NaNo has taught me over the years, it is that some word count is better than no word count at all.

Happy writing!

Margaux

I’m selling art! + other news

Hey everyone! Long time, no blog post. I’ve been super busy with school and writing my NaNoWriMo novel this month that I have completely forgotten to update you all. Also, due to the incredibly busy schedule, I haven’t even read that much. I have maybe read a total of 6 books since the beginning of September. I know, it’s bad.

For any of you who care, NaNoWriMo year 2 was going rough for about the first three weeks. This last week, however, I have written so many words and I plan to finish my novel tomorrow. To say I’m excited is an understatement.

In bigger news, I have started to sell art on Redbubble. I have been dabbling in hand-lettering recently, and liked the result of a few pieces so I uploaded them for people to buy. If you’re interested, you can click here and look around the shop. I’ve had a lot of fun making it, and I hope you enjoy looking at it. If you end up purchasing something, let me know in a comment so I can thank you personally.

I think that is all I have for now. Expect a reading wrap-up of the past few months from me soon, and maybe a few reviews.

Happy reading,

Margaux

Happy 1 Year Blogiversary!

I’m going to make this an incredibly quick post, but today I my one year Blogiversary! I’m so incredibly excited about the wonderful opportunities that creating this blog has given me. I’m grateful to every single one of you who read my posts and comment on them to give me your opinions. 

This year has been a fun one and I can’t wait to see what this next year brings. I have lots of fun bookish plans and lots more posts and I can’t wait to share them with all of you. 

Thank you all for joining me on this reading journey! 

Much love and happy reading,

Margaux

Absence + September TBR

Hi everyone! It’s been almost two months since the last time I posted anything on my blog and I have really missed you all. I have been in an awful reading slump for the past month and a half and have barely read anything. I haven’t been keeping up very well at all in terms of the book world. If there is anything super important that I missed out on, you should comment it down below, so that I can see all of the excitement!

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On to better news, I am out of my reading slump now and currently indulging in Queen of Shadows, by the queen herself Sarah J. Maas. So far I am a little over half way and I am loving it so much! I will have either a review up on here or a video discussion on my YouTube channel once I finish it. This is definitely the first book on my TBR for this month, but definitely not the last. Since I will be at a book event in October, I have a lot of books that I need to get to reading.

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Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes

This is a series that I have been meaning to read since I first heard it gushed about. I am so excited to get into this world, as it sounds incredibly interesting.

The Young Elites by Marie Lu

Anyone who knows my taste in reading knows that I adore historical fiction and fantasy, but it gets even better when authors decide to mix the two together. I have never read any of Marie Lu’s writing, but I have already heard incredible things about this book and the summary has completely intrigued me.

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo 

It is no secret on my Goodreads, that I am a huge fan of Leigh Bardugo’s Grisha Trilogy. So much so, that I never wrote a proper review (I know, my reviewer skills are fantastic). I am so excited to get my hands on a copy of this book and devour it and love it as much as I did with her other books. I am a huge fan of her writing and can read it for hours with no problem.

The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh

This is an interesting book for me because the summary is giving me an interesting vibe. I think I’m really going to like this book based on many of the reviews that I have read. If any of you have read this, I would love to know what you thought of it.

Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon

Ever since I heard about the premise of this book, I have been interested in giving it a shot. By the summary, I am not completely sure if this has some sort of fantastical element to it or if it is purely contemporary, but I want to read it. Plus, the cover is stunning in my opinion.

That’s the end of my TBR. I would love to know what you guys are reading this month. Also, if you have any reviews/opinions on these books, let me know!

Much love and happy reading,

Margaux

My New Roots | Review

My New Roots is a cookbook by Sarah Britton that focuses on healthy, plant based choices. Her recipes are filled with local and fresh ingredients that are both good for you and delicious. 

When I first recieved this cookbook for review, I expected to find lots of easy to make recipes that were simple for everyday meals. In this cookbook, I found that and more. This cookbook had a very nice mix of simple recipes and more complex recipes that could be made for, say a dinner party. The instructions for the recipes were simple to follow, and there were beautiful pictures to go along with a majority of the recipes. 

This cookbook has recipes that are vegan and gluten free, but I discovered that most recipes that aren’t vegan, could be easily made so by leaving out cheese or substituting coconut oil for ghee. The one major complaint I had about this book is that some of the ingredients could be difficult to get a handle on if you don’t live near a health or specialty store. As someone who has a difficult time getting a hold of these sorts of ingredients, this was a setback for me for some of the recipes. 

For those of you wondering, some of my favorite recipes in the cookbook were the Hand Pies and the Salt and Pepper Chocolate Chip Cookies. Overall, I thought that this was an incredibly well done cookbook and I would recommend it to people who like delicious food, but want it to be healthy and wholesome. 

If you have any other plant based cookbooks you want me to test out, let me know in the comments. Until then,

Happy reading,

Margaux

Disclaimer: I received this book from the Blogging for Books program in exchange for this review.

Recent Shenanigans of June

I think it’s been a little too long since I made a post on here. Yikes, I am so bad at keeping up. I do still come on here every now and again, see what’s going on and then decide that I’m too lazy to write another post. But today I thought that I would share some of my recent bookish shenanigans with you guys.

So first off, I have been participating a week long read-a-thon all week called Biannual Bibliothon that is run by a group of really sweet girls over on the booktube. I’ll link their channel here so that you can check it out if you want to. I’ve been reading like crazy and it has been a total blast.

To go along with the read-a-thon, I have been doing a few video challenges, first in which I create a bookshelf decoration inspired by the Grisha trilogy by Leigh Bardugo for a book DIY challenge.

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If you want to see how I made this (kind of a fail of a) project, you can click here to watch the video.

Then, I also recreated the cover of To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han, which was a total blast and I love the way that the recreation turned out. This was for a recreate a cover challenge for the read-a-thon.

You can also see the video for this recreation here, on my YouTube channel.

So I have definitely been on YouTube more than I have been on here, and I’m sorry for that, but I really enjoy spending my time making videos. If you want to see more of my book videos, feel free to subscribe to my channel. I have plans to make so many more videos there.

Anyways, I hope you had a good end to your June. Please tell me what sorts of things you guys have been up to and what you have been reading.

Happy reading!

Margaux

Disney Book Tag

Hello everybody! I’m so excited to do this tag because if there is one thing that I love more than books, its Disney. I’m freaking obsessed. Belle is my favorite, by a long shot. It’s probably because we are the same person. I mean nothing can bond two readers more than their love for the characters in books.

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This tag was created by the oh so wonderful Katytastic on Youtube, who I absolutely adore. So, without further ado, onto the tag!

1. The Little Mermaid – a character who is out of their element, a “fish out of water”

I think that Anna from Anna and the French Kiss is a good example of a character that is out of her element. She just moves to a new country (where she doesn’t speak the language) and then she has to deal with all the boy drama in her life. I don’t know about you, but that is definitely out of my knowledge of expertise.

2. Cinderella – a character who goes through a major transformation

I’m going to go with Hermione Granger from Harry Potter. I never really thought about her character development until this very moment, but that girl went through so much between books 1 and 7. She started as a dorky little 11 year old and ended as a brave 17 year old, both who I adore and can relate with.

3. Snow White – a book with an eclectic cast of characters

The Mortal Instruments series definitely is full of eclectic characters. We have a variety ranging from Magnus Bane to Isabelle Lightwood and everyone in between. I think the strange and unique cast of characters is why I love that series so much.

4. Sleeping Beauty – a book that put you to sleep

I think the book that I have to give this one to is Outlander by Diana Gabaldon. Now, I didn’t fall asleep reading this because I didn’t like it or it was boring. I fell asleep because I had stayed up so late reading it and my brain could no longer be awake.

5. The Lion King – a character who had something traumatic happen to them in childhood

Celaena from Throne of Glass, if you’ve read it, you know what I’m talking about. If you haven’t, read and find out already! What are you doing waiting around?

6. Beauty and the Beast – A beast of a book (a big book) that you were intimidated by, but found the story to be beautiful

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix is probably the longest book that I have ever read and while it is my least favorite of the series, it was still so good and memorable for me.

7. Aladdin – a character who gets their wish granted, for better or worse

Alina Starkov from the Grisha trilogy gets what she wants in the end. For her, it was probably for better, but I am still a little bitter about the ending.

8. Mulan – a character who pretends to be someone or something they are not

I have the best answer for this question, but I am not going to say it because of spoilers. I would rather not have an angry mob after me, so instead I’m going to say Meg from I Was Here. I’m not going to spoil that too much either, but that is definitely an interesting twist in the story.

9. Toy Story – a book with characters you wish would come to life

I’m going to say Game of Thrones because even though I hate Joffrey’s guts, I love so many of the other characters more than I can even begin to describe *cough* Daenerys *cough*.

10. Disney Descendants – your favorite villain or morally ambiguous character

My favorite villain is probably Draco Malfoy from the Harry Potter series. Oh gosh, I REALLY love him.

Alright, that is it for my Disney tag! I’m going to tag everyone who read the post this far. If you do the tag, let me know in the comments so I can read it. If you don’t want to make a post, then answer some of the questions in the comments!

Also, I did make a YouTube video on my TBR for a read-a-thon coming up in a week, so you can check it out here. You can definitely subscribe to my channel if you want as well! I hope to have more videos up very soon.

Much love and happy reading,

Margaux

Books That I Need to Read Soon

Reading slumps, oh reading slumps, how you never cease to amaze me with your incredible ability to make me not want to read. Yes, everyone, I am still stuck in a horrible reading slump and I have no idea what to do. I’ll probably do some book shopping in hopes that it will help. 🙂 Anyways, even though I am having trouble reading, I am going to try and power through some of these.

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1.  A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

Pretty sure I have talked about this on my blog so many times that people are sick of it and just want to see a review of it. Be patient my little grasshoppers, I am getting there.

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2. The Shatter Me series by Tahereh Mafi

This series looks so incredible (I mean look at those covers *drool*). I have also heard so many amazing things about the series from other bloggers that I have to check this out for myself.

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3. The Seven Realms series by Cinda Williams Chima

This is a series that I have been wanting to read ever since Regan from Peruse Project on YouTube talk about how much she loved these. She is someone who I trust the recommendation of very whole-heartedly, so I had to pick up this book. Yes, I realize that I have the second book pictured here, I don’t own the first one yet. It’s a work in progress.

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4. The Lunar Chronicles Series by Marissa Meyer

This is a series I started once upon a time, got about 30 pages into and put down because something newer and better came in the way. There was absolutely nothing wrong with my enjoyment of it, I just got distracted. I plan to read this and not put it down this summer.

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5. Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson

I have been meaning to read this since I bought this book and met Morgan at a book conference. I also gave it as a gift to my best friend and meant to read it so that we could talk about it together.

Those are just a few of the books on my never ending TBR. I really need to get the heck out of this reading slump and read some books. UGH. If you have any recommendations for books that I should read this summer, let me know in the comments. Also, if you want a review of any of these books, tell me and I will do my very best to get one out to you.

Much love and happy reading,

Margaux

P.S. I’ve been thinking of restarting up my booktube channel on YouTube. Let me know if you would want to see some book related videos and book reviews on there! If you would, let me know by subscribing to my channel!

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