Lyrical Dead-End: A Man Came Out of a Door in the Mountain


I wanted to like A Man Came Out of a Door in the Mountain so badly. Every inch of my existence wanted this to happen. I willed it with all my spirit as much as I possibly could. And I waited, and waited, and waited.

I was so excited to start this first time novel by Adrianne Harun, so much so, I put aside other reading to start it. The description was such lush, so captivating. I kept trying and waiting, desperately searching for something- anything- to happen in this story.

Alas, perhaps the man in the mountain never came out of his door for me because I found this novel like one giant question mark.

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No No NaNoWriMo


Every time November rolls around, I can’t help but begin to sneer at a few things; the cooler weather’s inability to quit ushering in snow and wind and negative temperatures, my inability to physically stay warm for approximately four months despite mountains of blankets and sweaters, everyone else’s inability to stop uttering in their lowered voices the Game of Thrones quote, “Winter is coming,” and my email’s inability to filter out an onslaught of reminders of what is about to happen that month from the National Novel Writing Month squad.

That’s right, writers. You know what November means.

Let me preface this by noting that I am fairly torn about NaNoWriMo as a concept because I really want to love the idea of it. I see the benefit and how it can truly help writers… but we just don’t see eye-to-eye, NaNo and I.

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Consistency, Like Shit, is Key


Coco sur la plage.

If I’ve learned anything on my summer vacation, it’s that consistency is key . . . and I’m shitting the bed on this one.

Now,  don’t get me wrong. I had a blast on vacation; my family made the annual pilgrimage to the shore, and even though I’m not that avid of a beachgoer (I’m too Slavic for that noise), I would have been content to remain on the sand and near the waves (we quite literally had Shark Week on the entire duration of the trip and I was making no unexpected moves)- anywhere that was not the rumblings and toilings of daily existence.

Coming home from vacation is sort of like coming off a bad hangover; you know what’s about to go down, and there’s absolutely nothing you can do to stop it. You can only push through and pray you make it to the other side after going through the three unfortunate steps of what Google likes to tell us is the post vacation blues.

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To Highlight or Not to Highlight?


A well loved copy of Leo Tolstoy’s A Gospel in Brief, with some fabulous notes all over it.

Highlighting, underlining, notating: all extremely personal decisions for readers, something as controversial as the death penalty in the right company.

Some people become physically ill at the idea of marks being made in their texts; they want to keep them pristine for as long as possible, and rightfully so. People pay an enormous amount of money for their libraries, and certainly, if my text was an extremely expensive or rare edition, I wouldn’t want anyone to mark my copy either.

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3 Books I Wish They Taught in High School


Let’s be honest: we all had to suffer through reading some dreadful books in high school.

As someone with a background in English education, I understand the importance and the relevance of many of the texts taught in schools; the Canon be praised. But that doesn’t mean kids these days don’t groan as violently when they find out they have to read The Scarlet Letter as kids did when I was in high school nearly a decade ago (time flies when you’ve got student loans to pay).

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Book Perfectionist? Paperback Swap is Not for You


Just a few of the many books I received from Paperback Swap. As you can tell, they’re pretty beat up.

I have been a member of a great website called Paperback Swap for the better part of a year and a half now, and I absolutely adore their services. I highly recommend this website for fellow book enthusiasts who have a shelf full of books they are willing to part with- books that you might have somehow acquired but are not desperate to keep in your possession and are willing to trade for another used book you might be interested in reading.

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In Which I Read Very, Very Slowly


My passion for reading is a Catch-22.

For someone who adores reading and all things related to books, I am one of the slowest readers you will ever meet.

I have an enormous bookshelf full of books just waiting to be read, and I often adopt stray books in need of a good home. I try to read a few minutes before bed every night or for an afternoon on my day off.

But I don’t read nearly as many books as one would think someone who started a book blog would read. I still probably read more than the average Joe, but my reading quota is certainly not where I would like it.

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