Reading and Cardio

Another Monday and another busy week ahead of me. I have been consumed by life and homework lately that I have been finding it hard to read as much as I would like, however I have figured out a way to get a nice reading session in each day!

For anyone who does their cardio on a machine or would like to start and have a hard time getting through a good cardio session should definitely test this out!

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I always bring something to read during cardio, it not only makes the cardio easier or more tolerable, but it also helps get a good reading session in.

I usually bring my kobo since it is more convenient and can use it on almost all cardio machines, however since A Little Life is a large and detailed read I have been sticking to the stairclimber so that I can read this book during.

My trick is to read a full chapter and then check the time, if they are short chapters then read two!

STORY TIME: When I was reading The Girl on the Train I was on the bike 
machines planning on doing a 20 minute session. The book was that good 
that I ended up sitting down and doing over an hour of cardio. Time well 
spent having a good cardio session and finishing a good book.

Let me know if you try it!

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Poets,Artists,Lovers: A Novel (2017) by Mira Tudor

★★★ 3.5/5

IMG_3820PAL is a fast-paced yet poignant character-driven novel riding waves of romanticism, drama, and wit in a manner reminiscent of David Nicholls’s books (One Day)—and set in the exciting world of several vibrant Romanian artists and musicians. Henriette, an accomplished sculptor, seems to find more joy in her feminist-inspired work and her piano playing than in the people who care about her.
Ela, a piano teacher turned book reviewer, hopes to discover the key to happiness and a more meaningful life through studying the workings of the mind and crafting poems about emotions she trusts will lead her to a better place. Joining them in beauty and blindness is Pamfil, a violinist who dabbles as a singer and lives mostly for the moment and his monthly parties. As they follow their passions, they find themselves on treacherous journeys to love and happiness, and are slow to figure out how to best tackle their predicaments. Fortunately, their lovers and friends are there to help . . . but then a newcomer complicates things. – Goodreads


Fiction/Contemporary/Women’s Fiction – can be read in a few good reading sessions

This read consists of characters that are artists in many different possible forms; sculptors, violinists, poets, and more. Somehow all their paths cross through a man named Pamfil whose charm makes them question what type of passion they seek in life.

Pamfil stimulates the discussion of what is lust, and what is love. Each lover endures different personal struggle identifying with what they feel for Pamfil and what it means for their relationship with their current/past partner.

I really enjoyed Mira’s writing style, there was so much insight and emotion in the writing I always caught myself writing down favorite quotes. The flow and beauty in the writing made the story so much more pleasurable to read.

The discussion of lust,love, and relationships is important in life and if you can relate at all then this read will definitely get you thinking about the kind of passion and stability you seek in your own life. Seeing Pamfil through the eyes of Henriette, Ela, and Anca and reading about the impacts he had on their lives provides us with different perspectives on the love/lust conversation and emphasizes that the impact of such a relationship is different depending on who you are and what you value.

My only problem with this read is that there was not enough action for me. Towards the middle it seemed to be very slow with a lot more discussion about weight than necessary. I would of enjoyed more events that caused interaction between all our poets,artists, and lovers. The beginning and ending were very well done and strong, however I did have a hard time staying engaged in the middle.

I definitely hope to read more from this author.

You can get her book here

"There is no routine with a loved one. Lovers are supposed to change each 
other all the time."
"He had only one heart and couldn't trust a woman, any woman, with it."
"'At twenty-four you should be looking resolutely ahead,' Pamfil said, 
'and not into the past. There will be enough time for that later on.'"
"And life wasn't only music and sunshine."

October’s TBR!

A Little Life is definitely going to take me some time to finish, and I am also trying to get through an ebook so September’s TBR is slowing me down

HOWEVER, after careful consideration of your suggestions I have picked some spooky halloween reads for this month!

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The Shining by Stephen King – I have been dying to read this book, but I wanted to save it for October!

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley – I am a little embarrassed to say I have never read this yet, but it fits right into my Halloween theme!

The Shack by William Paul Young – I have chosen this read for now (mostly because I need to finish it so my mom can have it), but it doesn’t exactly fit with my theme so I may change my mind when I get around to it.

Because I still have some September reads to clue up I have chosen only three books besides for my TBR – hopefully I get to read more.


Have you read any of these?

October Goals

September was my first month of sharing goals and making a plan to meet them. It was successful and really helped me focus on reading related goals

This month I need to focus on the goals I didn’t reach from September and add some new goals to make October successful.

Reading Goals

  • Commit more time to reading and less to sleeping/netflix/phone – The main goal for this month’s reading is to spend less time on my phone/netflix and more time reading. Although I am reading at a decent pace I have noticed I have been wasting a lot of time with netflix or napping, so I would like to commit more of this time to reading instead.

Blog Goals 

  • Stick to my schedule – This month I really need to focus on reaching my planned schedule of posts, last month I was very late posting most of them. I realize now the time and effort I need to commit so hopefully this month I can get on track

Bookstagram Goals

  • Interact more – Stories and interaction is my biggest focus. I need to be more social on my instagram page by posting stories and interacting with others through their posts.
  • Improve photography – Putting more time and effort into my pictures is very important to me this month. Since I have been rushed or late to post I end up using mediocre pictures and I want to address this ASAP.

Journal Goals

  • Worry less, journal more – This month I am going to focus on just adding more to my bullet journal. I am always too concerned with how artistic and perfect a spread looks and I end up waiting and waiting until I have enough time to do it good – which means I never do it. SO this month I want to stop being a perfectionist and just embrace using my bullet journal for whatever I want, whenever I need.

Writing Goals

  • Write down your thoughts – I am having trouble finding time and my spark for writing. October is a very busy month school wise, therefore I am going to keep it light and commit to writing down thoughts and ideas in a notebook.

September Wrap Up

It has been a hard month adjusting to being back to school and sticking to my blogging schedule – and on top of all this I have been sick for the past 2 weeks !

However, even with some setbacks I still think I have had a pretty productive month. So, let’s see how well I handled my goals.

I have not yet viewed my goals/achievements until writing this right now so that my reactions to how I handled my monthly goals are sincere and unprepared.

Reading Goals

I DID IT! YES, first goal achieved. It was my easiest goal for sure, but I celebrate all achievements – even the smaller ones.

I wanted to read a few more books since August was strictly dedicated to reading IT.

This month I was able to read:
The Giver – Lois Lowry (review here)
Tuesdays With Morrie – Mitch Albom (review here)
Everything I Never Told You (review coming soon)
A Little Life – Hanya Yanagihara (in progress)
Poets, Artists, Lovers: A Novel – Mira Tudor (in progress)

Definitely conquered more than one book this month!

Blog Goals

YES ANOTHER GOAL ! This is going great so far.

Although I have often had to push dates of my scheduled posts because I have been sick or wrapped up in school, I have still managed to be more active on my blog. Now that I understand the time and effort I need to reach my deadlines for my scheduled posts I can apply that next month and increase my frequency and timing again!

Bookstagram Goals

@thebayreads

3 for 3 so far!! My first goal this month involving my bookstagram was to test out a theme and try to make a pattern when I take my pictures. I have chosen a soft, faded, and orange color filter for my photos which I felt was appropriate for autumn. In addition to that, if you have noticed I also began to try to have some consistency in how I take my pictures. I take my TBR pile held in my hand against a solid color wall, my book reviews are always stood up in front of my bookshelf, bookhauls are spread out on my mat, and the rest of my photos usually have a white background. I am not sure if this is exactly the theme I am always going to stick to, but it works for now.

Oh no.. first goal not achieved.. 

I intended to communicate more with my followers by using instagram stories more frequently. This is my own fault, I have had plenty of opportunities to do this I just have not went out of my way to do it. This will definitely be something I will improve on in October – you have my word!

Journal Goals

Okay I achieved it, but I would only say barely. 

I have definitely dedicated more time to my journals and planners, but most of this is because I am in school and absolutely need to. My more personal journals and planners have still been slightly neglected. I am making progress, however I need to focus more on this in October.

Writing Goals

My weak point for sure.

I neglected writing this month, big time. I have to make time for it if I ever want to make progress with my writing. I will not act like September has been all that horrible for my writing because I have been thinking more about types of writing I can do, and out for a walk the other day I felt inspired and even typed up a little something in my phone!

Overall

This month was successful, I definitely achieved some goals and made progress on others even if I didn’t reach the exact point I wanted to be. Balancing my time is one of my biggest issues and will definitely be my focus for October. Stay tuned for October’s monthly goals!

 

The Giver (1993) by Lois Lowry

★★★★★ 5/5

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This haunting story centers on Jonas, who lives in a seemingly ideal, if colorless, world of conformity and contentment. Not until he’s given his life assignment as the Receiver of Memory does he begin to understand the dark, complex secrets behind his fragile community. – Goodreads

 

 

 


Fiction/Classic / Can be read easily, hard to put it down

It is hard to believe that I am just reading this book at 21 years old, especially since it was such a hit in some high school classes I always managed to avoid reading it – and wow, do I ever regret it!

The whole setting and idea of the society within this story is amazing enough, it is creative, manageable, and well structured. I loved hearing about the transitions children go through each year, and it was amazing to read this and have the citizens act so naturally with it because for their society it is all they know.

And then that’s when you have your twist. I do not want to spoil this book because it really is amazing and I suggest each and every one of you read it. The story really made me appreciate the good and the bad of what we experience in our lives and you get to explore your own morals and beliefs while you are held in suspense about the character’s choice of action.

"Life here is so orderly, so predictable - so painless. It's what they've
chosen."

Pick my TBR!

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PICK THREE!!

Hard to believe it is almost October, but here we are. I decided for the month of October I wanted to have a TBR list that consisted of scary, thrilling, and/or strange reads, however the problem is I have so many options.

I am currently reading A Little Life, but I was recently contacted to review a novel for someone (I’m moving up in the book world!!!) so it is slowing me down a bit and I anticipate I will have to carry over reading A Little Life at least in the first week of October.

To keep my TBR realistic with my busy workload in school, I am hoping you guys can recommend what three books I should make time for during October.

 

 

Top 3 of Summer 2017

As of today it is officially the first day of Fall which means we sadly have to say goodbye to Summer. I had an amazing summer, and also read some amazin books.

As of today, I have read 40 Books

I still have 3 more months of reading to go, but I wanted to share my top 3 favorite books that I read in the span from june – today. Honestly, this year I have read so many great books. Almost every review I’m throwing out 4 and 5 stars, but I just can’t help it, my reading list this year has been on fire. With careful consideration, here are my top 3 reads of the summer:

3. The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath (review here)

2. Tuesdays with Morrie – Mitch Albom  (review here)

1. IT- Stephen King (review here)

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What were your favorite reads of the summer?

IT Movie Adaptations

I would be very surprised if you have not already read some form of post based on the IT movie adaptation(s), especially recently with the newer release.

I recently read IT by Stephen King in preparation for the new movie release – I also watched the 1990 version before the new one.

2017 > 1990

It was hard for me to enjoy the 1990 adaptation because for one I cannot seem to enjoy old movies, however in saying that, the 1990 adaptation was still well done and I did enjoy watching it. For me, the 1990 version was basically just a way to present Stephen King’s work visually. It very closely followed the book, however it was not scary to me.

It’s hard to compare the two movies because they are two very different interpretations of Stephen King’s work.

The 2017 adaptation, in my opinion, was a masterpiece. Here’s why:

Pennywise

As soon as I heard Bill Skarsgård was playing Pennywise I knew he would be amazing. Bill starred in the TV series Hemlock Grove. That show was extremely weird and creative and Bill fit in perfectly, just like he did in IT. 2017 Pennywise was absolutely terrifying when he needed to be, and strange and mysterious when that was required. Bill portrayed the Pennywise I imagined because he uses the clown identity to enforce fear itself.

Characters

Let me just start with that the children actors were absolutely amazing. They also fit their characters perfectly.

Bill – the stuttering sounded genuine and his emotions were easily told from his expressions and seemed sincere which was key for his character since the bulk of him is his love for Georgie and the guilt he feels.

Eddie – the hypochondriac aspect is key for this character and is played very well. He was also hilarious which made him so much better. His mother also played a pretty significant role in the movie which was important for his character development.

Beverly – the actress was amazing, she had a tough persona with a dark backstory that she well portrayed through her actions and emotions in certain scenes (I’m really trying not to create any spoilers)

Ben – I loved Ben. He is so sweet and smart and is essential to the team when they are trying to figure out what haunts Derry. The New Kids on the Block jokes were hilarious.

Mike – I enjoyed Mike as well, but I feel we didn’t get too in depth with his character. Mike plays a huge role in the books so I hope to see this represented in part 2.

Stan – I think Stan’s character was very well portrayed because he always held back and was more hesitant and less invested as the others which is key in his future character development.

Richie – the best character in that movie no doubt. Richie was a little annoying in the books because you had to read paragraphs to pages of his rambling, but this comedic character was essential in the movie and I laughed out loud at everything he said.

Overall, the kids were very well represented – they exceeded my expectations for sure.

Overall

I am very happy that I decided to read the book first because I think it made the movie that much more enjoyable for me. This movie did not follow the book scene by scene or detail by detail, however even with the twists made in the adaptation they preserved elements of the book by the little details seen in many of the scenes. Some of these details you can read about in this article by Buzzfeed (spoilers)

This is definitely in my top 3 movies of all time. It was planned out so well, the horror started right away and I was scared the whole time. There were no unnecessary scenes or slow parts.

Honestly, I was nervous to see the movie because how would I feel if it went badly? Thankfully, it exceeded my expectations.

I hope everyone watches this movie, it was enjoyable, creative, and scary. I am still having nightmares (worth it).

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Tuesdays With Morrie (1997) by Mitch Albom

★★★★★ 5/5

Processed with VSCO with a4 presetMaybe it was a grandparent, or a teacher or a colleague. Someone older, patient and wise, who understood you when you were young and searching, and gave you sound advice to help you make your way through it. For Mitch Albom, that person was Morrie Schwartz, his college professor from nearly twenty years ago. Maybe, like Mitch, you lost track of this mentor as you made your way, and the insights faded. Wouldn’t you like to see that person again, ask the bigger questions that still haunt you? Mitch Albom had that second chance. He rediscovered Morrie in the last months of the older man’s life. Knowing he was dying of ALS – or motor neuron disease – Mitch visited Morrie in his study every Tuesday, just as they used to back in college. Their rekindled relationship turned into one final ‘class’: lessons in how to live. – Goodreads



Memoir/Inspirational / Quick read can be read in one sitting, and should be read over and over.

Okay, I loved this read. It was so sweet and enjoyable, Morrie was really an amazing man with a lot to offer to the world. This is a great way for a man to be remembered and I am so proud of Mitch for writing this.

These kinds of reads are so important to me. This read reminded me of The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch which I also really enjoyed and have been meaning to re-read. As a 21 year old newly graduated university student, life advice is crucial to me. This is the age where things get confusing because you are trying to evaluate where you are in life and figuring out where you want to be and how to get there. I always say to myself “if I knew then what I know now” and these books can give you that in real time. Learning from others is key to our growth, and having the opportunities to hear the life lessons of wiser and more experienced people can really contribute to your own growth and possibly impact the way you live the rest of you life.

This was an enjoyable book and the set up was perfect. The chapter titles, the transitions between flashbacks and “lectures”, and the overall short and sweetness of the book makes it that much more valuable. It is a well written book with a lot to offer, I encourage everyone to read it, and then maybe read it twice.

"He was intent on proving that the word 'dying' was not synonymous with
'useless'."
"The world, I discovered, was not all that interested. I wandered around my 
early twenties, paying rent and reading classifieds and wondering why the 
lights were not turning green for me."
"I felt as if time were suddenly precious, water going down an open drain,
and I could not move quickly enough."
"'Life is a series of pulls back and forth. You want to do one thing, but 
you are bound to do something else. Something hurts you yet you know it 
shouldn't. You take certain things for granted, even when you know you 
should never take anything for granted.'"
"'So many people walk around with a meaningless life. They seem half-asleep,
 even when they're busy doing things they think are important.'"
"'And in addition to all the miseries, the young are not wise. They 
have very little understanding about life. Who wants to live every day
when you don't know what's going on?'"
"'Aging is not just decay, you know. It's growth.'"
"Death ends a life not a relationship."