2019 reading goals & 2018 follow-up

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Hello my fellow book lovers! Today, I’ll check whether I accomplished my 2018 reading goals and discuss my 2019 goals with you!

Here’s the original post in which I discussed my 2018 goals!

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Read 52 books

I thought I would be busier in 2018, but unfortunately, I was unemployed for the majority of the year. As a result, I managed to read 100 books in 2018, though!!

physical TBR: more read than unread books

Wow, I forgot this was one of my 2018 goals… I decided to separate my read and TBR books on my bookshelves and I was surprised so many of the books I own are unread. I even created a second Goodreads account to keep better track of this.

I, however, completely failed at this goal. Because I read so many audiobooks, I neglect my physical TBR. I certainly want to pay more attention to this this year.

read a variety of genres

I mainly read Young Adult contemporaries and wanted to diversify the genres I read. I picked up more literary fiction in 2018, but noticed I often didn’t have enough life experience to fully comprehend its themes and characters. I, however, completely discovered my love for true crime and read more non-fiction than ever before.

As for other genres, I am still intimidated by fantasies. And while I love historical fiction, I rarely pick it up.

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read 52 books

While I read 100 books in 2018, my reading goal is 52 books just as previous years. I’m proud of myself for reading so much, but I’m quite a slow reader as opposed to when I listen to audiobooks.

Just like last year, my life is rather unpredictable right now. I’m looking for a job, but my search hasn’t been very successful so far. Because of this, I don’t know whether I’ll have as much time to read when and if I get a job.

physical TBR: more read than unread books

Because I completely forgot this was one of my goals last year, I want to pay more attention to this in 2019. I won’t stop listening to audiobooks, but would like to read before I fall asleep, instead of browsing YouTube and Pinterest every. single. night. for. hours!

read every single day

I absolutely do not read every single day. I don’t even listen to audiobooks daily, because I love podcasts and YouTube just as much. That said, I’m hoping I could at least read thirty minutes each day. Honestly, this is a really ambitious goal for me. I often go weeks without picking up a book, so I would have to completely change my daily routine to make sure I get some reading done. That said, I’m determined to make this a habit.

quarterly backlist TBRs

At the beginning of 2018, I posted a list of backlist books I wanted to read throughout the year. I did quite well the first few months, but after a while, I neglected that list. This year, however, I think I might be more successful if I turn that list into quarterly TBRs instead. At the end of the year, I am still aiming to read the same amount of backlist books, but it seems more manageable this way.

Additionally, I would also like to create more monthly TBRs. I am a mood reader so I don’t want it to be too rigid, but a couple of books seems feasible.


What are your 2019 goals? Did you manage to achieve all your 2018 ones?

Thank you for reading,

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5 Star Predictions (round 1) | UPDATE

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Hello my fellow book lovers! At the beginning of 2018, I shared with you which books on my TBR I expected were going to be 5 star reads. You can read the original post here. I have finally read those five books and today, I’m going to share with you whether I actually loved them as much as I thought I would!

wild beautyIn my original post, I wrote the following: I’m not familiar with magical realism, so I don’t know what to expect from this novel. As a result, I didn’t love Wild Beauty as much as my fellow readers. Don’t get me wrong, I gave it a positive rating – you can read my review here – but it wasn’t very memorable. Though I might struggle with the genre, I am definitely going to give McLemore’s other books a chance and hopefully, I will grow more used to it.

the secret history

Oh boy, I was so surprised I didn’t enjoy The Secret History! For literally YEARS, I strongly believed this would become one of my all-time favourite books, but sadly, it didn’t work out that way. You can read my review here. I didn’t care about the characters and the plot wasn’t as intriguing as I had expected.

girl out of waterGirl Out of Water wasn’t a bad book – I rated it 3.5 stars – but I personally couldn’t really connect to it. I liked the family dynamics, however, and I will certainly pick up Silverman’s next book, You Asked for Perfect. You can read my review of Girl Out of Water here.

amina's voiceAmina’s Voice is a fast-paced diverse read and I really enjoyed it. The Muslim and Pakistani-American representation are #OwnVoices. Because I was able to finish this book in a handful of hours, however, it wasn’t quite a five star read as it could’ve been more fleshed-out. That’s probably to be expected from a book aimed at younger audiences though. Still, I’d recommend Amina’s Voice and I rated it four stars!

burial rites

Thankfully one of my predictions came true!! While reading I was going back and forth between rating it four or five stars, and the author’s note made me bump up my rating. Kent gave us a complex portrayal of a woman who’s accused of murdering two people, which I really appreciated. You can read my full review here.


Clearly, I’m not very good at predicting which books I’ll love. That said, I do plan on doing a round two very soon 🙂 Have you read any of these books? What are your thoughts?

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My bookshelves: read vs. unread

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Hello, my fellow book lovers! Since the beginning of 2018, I’ve separated my read and TBR books on my bookshelves. It’s great to finally see which books I have yet to read. When I rearranged my bookshelves, I immediately noticed I have more unread than read books, which was quite a surprise.

A couple of days ago I decided to create a second Goodreads account, purely to keep track of the books I own physical copies of. I scanned each book I own, and here are the results: 88 books have been read, 134 are still on my TBR.

contemporaryathonA staggering sixty percent of the books I own, I have yet to read! Keep in mind that I own multiple copies of some books, so I didn’t insert those. Additionally, I didn’t consider the books I want to unhaul, so quite a few books I have read and own, are not on the list. Nonetheless, my goal for 2019 to reverse that ratio.

I can explain why merely forty percent of the books I own, have been read. I mainly listen to audiobooks as opposed to reading physical copies. When choosing which audiobook I want to read next, I mainly pick books I don’t own physical copies of. Why would I spend my credit on a book I’ve already paid for? Therefore, I tend to read a lot of books each month that aren’t on my bookshelves.

Reading fewer audiobooks is not an option for me. If I did that, I’d only end up reading about two books a month. Since this is a goal for 2019, I still have plenty of time to think how I’ll handle improving my read vs. unread ratio.

Do you have any advice? Are you better at keeping track of your TBR than me? Let me know your thoughts in the comments! ❤

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Bookstagram: Should I Stay or Should I Go? | book chat

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Hello, my fellow book lovers! I joined the book community on Instagram or “bookstagram” in June 2015. Ever since the algorithm was introduced, I’ve been unhappy. It’s gotten to the point where I actually considering leaving bookstagram, so I wanted to talk about that today.

– the algorithm –

Ever since Instagram introduced it’s algorithm (e.g. no longer a chronological feed), users have felt it’s impact. No matter what I do, I don’t gain followers and my pictures hardly receive as many likes as they used to. I have over a thousand followers less on my other account, yet my pictures get just as many likes there. I know I shouldn’t care about the numbers, but it’s disheartening. It feels as if I’m talking to myself.

– not enough spoons –

Taking pictures is both mentally and physically draining. I simply don’t have the spoons to spend a ton of time on my pictures. I know my pictures would probably be more popular if I edited them using Photoshop, if I used more props… but that’s too demanding. Please know it’s not laziness; blame my disabilities.

– rep searches, merchandise, a camera… –

Bookstagram isn’t simply taking a picture of a book. At times, the book boxes, the bookish candles, rep searches etc. seem much more important. I can’t afford and don’t want to spend so much money on it. I want it to be fun, rather than feel like I run a business but get nothing in return.

– lack of diversity –

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You can find more photos on my Instagram account!

I try to post a lot of pictures of diverse books on my account because those are the books I read. Whenever I post pictures of popular (and non-diverse) novels such as the Harry Potter series, I get more likes. I think the book community is doing more attempts to be inclusive, but bookstagram is seriously lacking. For every ten pictures you see there, nine will probably feature Sarah J. Maas’ books!

At the end of the day, I just don’t feel at home in the book community on Instagram anymore. I’m certainly not the only person there who cares about diverse book, but there are few of us. Additionally, most of those people are active on other social media such as Twitter as well, so I don’t think I would be missing out on much if I deleted my account.

– BUT am I ready to say ‘goodbye’? –

That said, I’ve had my account for such a long time now, it’s a habit. Truthfully yes, I am doing it out of habit rather than enjoyment, but still: taking pictures of books is what I’m used to. I want to say: “F*ck it, I don’t care about the numbers, I’m just going to post whatever I want to”, but I cannot help but feel even more lonely whenever I post a picture, because it truly feels as if I’m talking to myself.

If you have any advice for me, please let me know ❤ I’m sorry this post is so negative, but I needed to vent.

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my bookshelves | January 2018

bookshelves_january.pngHello, my fellow book lovers! In January I got another bookcase and I rearranged my shelves. Today, I want to show you what they looked like. Please keep in mind that I have to take pictures using my phone and that the weather is incredibly precarious over here, so these are by no means top-quality shots.

Since taking these pictures, I rearranged my shelves AGAIN, so you can expect a second instalment of this post soon 😉


More photos can be found on my bookstagram

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This is what my shelves look like from a distance. In January, I got the corner bookcase and one big one as an early birthday and late Christmas gift from my sister and mother. The furniture in my bedroom is black, so I chose to go for black bookshelves as well.

january_readOn the left, right next to my bed are the shelves containing the books I have read.  I only started separating my TBR and read books a few months ago and I am very glad I did.

Additionally, I also rearrange my books – and even Funko Pops! – by colour. I have done this for a very long time and I don’t care how some people feel about it, I love it.

My shelves are not only filled with books, but I also like to put some decoration on them. Most of it was actually really cheap and the art pieces are all created by me. You can find more of my work @slyther.ink on Instagram.

january_cornerThe bookcase in the corner is meant for CDs, but with less shelves it can also be used for your books! I wasn’t sure at first, but I am glad I decided to get this one as well because it makes the transitions between each bookcase seem more “natural”.

I have read The Raven Cycle, but not the other books on this bookcase. I own a lot of blue books, but the hues are so different; it’s a pain in the ass when organising my shelves by colour!

The two large bookcases on the right are filled with books I haven’t read yet. Clearly, I ought to read more books that are on my physical TBR!

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One of the main reasons why I decided to rearrange my bookshelves so soon after taking these pictures, is the sunlight which gets reflected by the back of the bookcase. It honestly bothers me so much!

I am very proud of that Dark Mark piece I’ve made. As you can probably tell, I didn’t put my Harry Potter collection on these shelves. I put those on a small bookcase at the other side of my room. That’s also something I changed recently, so you will get to see my collection when I post another update of my shelves 🙂

Books I want to unhaul aren’t on my bookshelves, by the way.

Janaury_TBR_2Finally, these shelves are also filled with books on my physical TBR. The Heroes of Olympus series is a bit of an exception though, since I am currently making my way through it, but I want to keep the series together in the box.

As I’ve already told you, my shelves no longer look like this. As much as I liked these displays, it seemed too messy for my taste. It actually started to stress me out, though that probably says more about my anxiety disorder than the actual state of my shelves. Anyway, I will post an updated version soon, but I can already reveal that my shelves are now organised by both colour AND size.


Please let me know whether you enjoyed this post (because if you didn’t, there’s no need for me to post an updated version)! I know black bookcases aren’t very popular among readers and sometimes I wish I had white ones instead, but I guess that’s what makes mine stand out among most Bookstagram accounts, haha!

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5 star predictions: books on my TBR

five star predictions.pngLately, I’ve been seeing some Booktubers predict their future 5 star reads, which intrigued me to do the same. This was apparently created by MercysBookishMusings. I had expected it to be very easy because I buy each book thinking I’m going to love it, but a five star is still different from a four, so this wasn’t easy at all!

I decided to only have a look at my physical and Kindle TBR while making this list, and I afterwards noticed that almost all of these books are contemporaries. That’s no coincidence, because I’ve absolutely been loving diverse realistic fiction that is heartbreaking, yet beautiful and somehow still uplifting.

So here are five books I think I will end up giving five stars!

burial rites

synopsis: Set against Iceland’s stark landscape, Hannah Kent brings to vivid life the story of Agnes, who, charged with the brutal murder of her former master, is sent to an isolated farm to await execution.

Horrified at the prospect of housing a convicted murderer, the family at first avoids Agnes. Only Tóti, a priest Agnes has mysteriously chosen to be her spiritual guardian, seeks to understand her. But as Agnes’s death looms, the farmer’s wife and their daughters learn there is another side to the sensational story they’ve heard.

I can’t wait to pick up this historical fiction novel! I’ve heard so many positive things about it. I actually had my eyes on a hardcover copy, but I couldn’t find it anywhere, so I settled for the e-book while it was on sale.

wild beauty

synopsis: Love grows such strange things.

For nearly a century, the Nomeolvides women have tended the grounds of La Pradera, the lush estate gardens that enchant guests from around the world. They’ve also hidden a tragic legacy: if they fall in love too deeply, their lovers vanish. But then, after generations of vanishings, a strange boy appears in the gardens.

The boy is a mystery to Estrella, the Nomeolvides girl who finds him, and to her family, but he’s even more a mystery to himself; he knows nothing more about who he is or where he came from than his first name. As Estrella tries to help Fel piece together his unknown past, La Pradera leads them to secrets as dangerous as they are magical in this stunning exploration of love, loss, and family.

Because EVERYONE loves it, I am nervous to pick up Wild Beauty. It’s not unusual for me to keep postponing reading hyped books because I don’t want my expectations to be too high and set myself up for disaster.

I’m not familiar with magical realism, so I don’t know what to expect from this novel to be honest.the secret history.png

synopsis: Under the influence of their charismatic classics professor, a group of clever, eccentric misfits at an elite New England college discover a way of thinking and living that is a world away from the humdrum existence of their contemporaries. But when they go beyond the boundaries of normal morality they slip gradually from obsession to corruption and betrayal, and at last – inexorably – into evil.

Back when I was still active on Tumblr, everyone who loved The Raven Cycle adored The Secret History as well. So I’m expecting this to be a five star read but I am definitely intimidated by the hype, which is why I still haven’t started this novel yet even though I’ve had it on my shelves for YEARS.

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synopsis: Anise Sawyer plans to spend every minute of summer with her friends: surfing, chowing down on fish tacos drizzled with wasabi balsamic vinegar, and throwing bonfires that blaze until dawn. But when a serious car wreck leaves her aunt, a single mother of three, with two broken legs, it forces Anise to say goodbye for the first time to Santa Cruz, the waves, her friends, and even a kindling romance, and fly with her dad to Nebraska for the entire summer. Living in Nebraska isn’t easy. Anise spends her days caring for her three younger cousins in the childhood home of her runaway mom, a wild figure who’s been flickering in and out of her life since birth, appearing for weeks at a time and then disappearing again for months, or even years, without a word.

Complicating matters is Lincoln, a one-armed, charismatic skater who pushes Anise to trade her surfboard for a skateboard. As Anise draws closer to Lincoln and takes on the full burden and joy of her cousins, she loses touch with her friends back home – leading her to one terrifying question: will she turn out just like her mom and spend her life leaving behind the ones she loves?

I won’t read Girl Out of Water anytime soon because this seems like the perfect summer’s read and it’s the middle of winter right now. All my friends love this book and considering how much I’ve been loving contemporaries lately, I don’t think Girl Out of Water is going to disappoint.

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synopsis: Amina has never been comfortable in the spotlight. She is happy just hanging out with her best friend, Soojin. Except now that she’s in middle school everything feels different. Soojin is suddenly hanging out with Emily, one of the “cool” girls in the class, and even talking about changing her name to something more “American.” Does Amina need to start changing too? Or hiding who she is to fit in? While Amina grapples with these questions, she is devastated when her local mosque is vandalized.

I don’t think I’ve ever given a middle grade novel a five star rating yet, but I’m very hopeful that’s going to change soon because I have a ton of diverse middle grades on my TBR! Amina’s Voice sounds sad yet heartbreaking, which is something I tend to love. I’m also very keen to read more books featuring Muslim protagonists, so I can’t wait to pick this up!


This was much more difficult than I had anticipated! If you liked this post, I could do a variation of it in the future, e.g. 2018 releases I expect to rate five stars.

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#ReadingGoals: 2017 follow-up and 2018 goals

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Hello, my fellow book lovers and a HAPPY NEW-YEAR! I hope 2018 is going to be filled with wonderful moments and books 💗

At the beginning of 2017, I shared some reading goals I’d like to achieve. Today, I am going to check how that went and am going to talk about my 2018 goals as well!


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1. 2017 Goodreads Reading Challenge

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My goal was to read 52 books, or approximately one book each week. 2017 ended up being my best reading year so far, with a total of 85 books! Though it was a good reading year, it absolutely wasn’t a good personal year for me, which actually explains why I was able to read so much.

2. Diversity Bingo 2017

I’ve been reading diverse books for over a year and I absolutely do not regret that decision. I’m very satisfied with the books I’ve been reading an purchasing, which is why I don’t feel to bad for not posting an update of my Diversity Bingo sheet. First of all, it was too much work to figure out how to complete each square, because most books fit in multiple categories. Furthermore, I’d have to purchase books to complete it and I wasn’t able to do that.

So while I won’t do Diversity Bingo again, that doesn’t mean I won’t read diverse books anymore.


2018_goals

1. 2018 Goodreads Reading Challenge

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This year, I plan on reading 52 books again. My life is very unpredictable at the moment, so I don’t know how much I’ll be able to read a few months from now.

2. bookshelves: more read than unread books

Because I’m reading diverse books, I’m not picking up ones that have been on my shelves for years. I’m planning on unhauling a bunch, but there are other books on there that I am still somewhat interested in, such as Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.
A couple of weeks ago, I rearranged my bookshelves and separated my read and unread books. I was surprised when I noticed that I haven’t read most of the books I own! This is absolutely something I will have to work on in 2018!

3. variety of genres

2017 was the year I fell in love with young adult contemporaries again. As much as I love that genre, I do want to read a larger variety in 2018.


So these are my 2018 reading goals! I’m not being too ambitious, so hopefully, it will be a successful year. What are some of your reading goals for the new year? Let me know in the comments!

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requesting e-ARCs: tips and tricks

requesting e-ARCs.pngHello, my fellow book lovers. I’ve been requesting e-ARCs* since March, and I thought it might be nice to share some tips and tricks with you, based on my experiences. I am by no means an expert, but I wish I had know the following when I first started requesting them.

*e-ARCs are digital advance reader copies, so books you read for review before the release date

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You can request e-ARCs on Edelweiss and Netgalley. My requests have yet to be approved on Edelweiss. Though I also get plenty of rejections on Netgalley, I do get lucky there much more often. I also find it an easier site to navigate.

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When you first join the site, you’ll want to request as many titles as possible. Don’t do that! What if you get approved for all of them? You’ll never have the time to read those. So don’t go overboard while requesting e-ARCs. Even though the chances of getting approved for all of the titles are slim, you may not want to spend all of your spare time reading ARCs. There are plenty of other books you can read in the meantime, just have a look at your bookshelves!

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I personally find this the most important piece of advice. Only request titles you are genuinely interested in! There’s an abundance of books on both Edelweiss and Netgalley and you might discover some great books through them. But do some research beforehand and make sure the book you’re requesting is something you’d actually read. Trust me, I have some e-ARCs of books that were released months ago, that I still have to read. I had requested them because I’ve heard of the books somehow, but once I got approved, I wasn’t actually excited to pick them up.

Your feedback ratio is the amount of approved e-ARCs you actually reviewed. So if you keep on requesting e-ARCs, but don’t actually read them, your feedback ratio will go lower. And that’s not good, because publishers want to make sure you will actually review it. That’s why it’s so important to only request titles you’d want to read.

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The second ARC I got approved for, was the Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli. I was over the moon! It was one of my most anticipated releases of the year and though I had only just joined Netgalley, I got approved for such a great book! Surely, I would get approved for other great titles as well, right?

Well, I was wrong about that. Even much smaller publishers decline my requests. There’s no way of telling when you’ll get approved and when you’ll get declined. It really doesn’t matter whether the author is famous or not, whether the publisher is big or not… All you can do is try, but there are no guarantees.

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That leads me to piece of advice no. 5: don’t take it personally when you don’t get approved. I really struggle with this one. Sometimes, I have the feeling everyone got approved for a certain title, except for me. It makes me wonder whether I’m doing something wrong, whether my blog isn’t good enough. As difficult as it is, you can’t doubt yourself. Requesting e-ARCs should be fun, instead of making you feel bad about yourself and your work. So when you see everyone got approved but you, pick up another book instead and think “well, it’s their loss!”.

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This is an obvious one: you have to write honest reviews. If you didn’t like it, write that in your review. Though this is a simple piece of advice, it might be something you struggle with when you first start requesting ARCs. Because what if the publisher sees your negative review and never approves you again?! If they do that, the publisher is very unprofessional. Furthermore, whose approval means more to you? The approval of your fellow readers, or the approval of some publisher who probably never visits your blog anyway? This is something you especially see on BookTube: “you’re the only one who’s honest!”. Though it’s possible some readers enjoy every single book they read, people will notice whether you’re honest or not.


These were some pieces of advice if you want to start requesting e-ARCs! If you need any more help or have further advice, feel free to leave a comment 🙂 I hope this post is going to be useful!

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What I love and hate about being an international reader

being an international reader.pngHello, my fellow book lovers! Whenever I have a look at my blog’s stats, I’m surprised that the majority of my readers are from English-speaking countries, namely the USA, the UK and Australia. So I thought it made be fun to give you an insight in what it’s like for me, a reader from Belgium. I always read books in English, but naturally, that comes with different obstacles readers from English-speaking countries might face.

As for my fellow international readers, I hope this is going to be a relatable post! Though I usually tend to focus on the negative aspects, I wanted to include some positive ones as well. Because being an international reader can’t be all bad, can it?


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I’m currently unemployed after recently graduating from college. As a student, I could only work one month a year, and I don’t get any allowances from my parents. So when I want to read a book, I have to spend the little money I have. I wish I could go to a library instead, but the most recent English book they have over there, is most likely The Fault in Our Stars or Breaking Dawn. So finding diverse books over there, is going to be impossible.

Unfortunately, used bookstores aren’t an option either. It’s very unlikely they carry any English books to begin with, but when they do, they’re just as expensive as buying a new copy online!

Thankfully, there’s still Kindle. I know, I know, we readers prefer physical copies, but especially when you’re short on cash, e-books are great! As an international reader, however, this comes with a downside as well: a lot of the time when an e-book’s on sale for a limited time only, it’s not the case in all countries. You have no idea how often I’ve got excited when a book on my TBR was on sale, only to see it wasn’t on my Amazon 😦

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My friend Laura @ Green Tea & Paperbacks wrote a wonderful thread about international giveaways, which you should definitely check out! This is another post that explains the lack of international giveaways. Though I completely understand why some promotions are US only, international readers feel left out more often than not.

It especially saddens me when it involves a signed book or special edition by one of my favourite authors. They often claim it’s international, but the shipping costs are often higher than the actual product! I can’t and won’t spend my money on that.

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The chances of me ever meeting an author, are slim to none. It definitely makes me jealous to see certain readers meet their favourite author multiple times, whereas I’ll probably never get the chance to meet them even once. Because there aren’t many bookish events over here, it’s also much more difficult to meet fellow readers in real life.

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I usually don’t pre-order books because I simply can’t afford to buy them at full price. Besides, I’ve had multiple bad experiences with pre-orders, including Book Depository cancelling my order of a limited edition… Anyway, as an international reader, getting a book in your hands on the release date is nearly impossible, especially if you have to buy it online. Book Depository, for example, is located in the UK. When I buy a book there, it takes approximately two weeks to arrive. Pre-orders are no exception, because they usually send the book out on the release date. No matter how excited you are for a newly released book, you will have to wait a while before you get to hold it in your hands.


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Like I said, I only read books written in English. Because that isn’t my first language, I do think it has helped me loads. Because I graduated as an English teacher and because translations are awful (they even change the names!), I don’t ever plan on reading Dutch books instead.

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I can’t gush about books to anyone I know in real life, so I’m very thankful for the online book community. I bet a lot of readers from English-speaking countries feel the same, but I still had to mention this on my list. I’m so thankful for the awesome people I have met online! Furthermore, I have also learnt a lot thanks to them, especially about diversity.

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Because I have to buy all my books online, I could buy whatever edition I want except I can’t, because MONEY. So in principle, I can buy the edition I like best, and it doesn’t matter whether it’s the UK or US one.


So these are some up- and downsides to being an international reader! I probably left out a bunch of things, so feel free to add stuff in the comments!

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5 Popular Books I Didn’t Love

popular books I didn't love.pngI love unpopular opinions. It says as much about someone as their favourite books. That’s why I wanted to talk about some books everyone seems to love, but I didn’t. I won’t go into detail since I wrote reviews for all of the titles I’m about to mention, but I still wanted to talk about this today. These are in no particular order!

alice's adventures in wonderland.pngAlice’s Adventuress in Wonderland is probably the weirdest book I’ve ever read, but not in a good or interesting way. I had no idea what was going on; I even thought I had picked up the wrong edition! Everything I thought I knew about Wonderland, was only briefly mention in this novel, such as the Mad Hatter and the Cheshire Cat. Even upon finishing this novel – which was a struggle – I still have no idea what it was about. I own the sequel, but definitely do not plan on picking it up. (review)

to all the boys i've loved beforeI read To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han back in June 2015, so I don’t remember perfectly why I didn’t like this novel, especially because my review wasn’t as thorough as they usually are. But I remember that this novel seemed so safe, so bland. Even though I hadn’t read a lot of books yet at that point on my life, To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before is a story I felt I already knew by heart. Apart from the Korean-American characters, there was nothing that stood out for me. I thought there was a lack of female friendships and the main character was so pure and innocent, which isn’t my cup of tea either, especially when that’s used to look down on other female characters.

Having said that, I read this book over two years ago and my reading preferences have changed. But would I enjoy To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before if I were to read it now? Probably not.

red queen.pngShortly before reading To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, I picked up Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard. Like I said, back then, I had only just got into reading for the first time in my life. I didn’t dislike Red Queen, yet it felt entirely generic and unoriginal. I won’t continue this series, especially after finding out that the only bisexual character is the villain and after the author claimed that the main character Mare is or could be a person of colour, even though that’s not canon in the book itself.

the boy in the striped pyjamasThe Boy in the Striped Pyjamas is such a beloved book, so I’d definitely suggest reading my review if you want to know why I didn’t enjoy this novel. I won’t go into detail again, but I didn’t understand its purpose. Throughout the entire book, the main character remains ignorant about the events during the Second World War, even though he lives right next to a concentration camp. I found that very disrespectful and still wonder what the author tried to achieve by writing this novel. (review)a monster calls.pngI’ve read three novels written by Patrick Ness: More Than This, The Rest of Us Just Life Here and A Monster Calls. Unfortunately, I felt meh about all three of those. I can’t put my finger on it, but somehow, I just don’t click with his books. In the case of A Monster Calls, the book didn’t leave an impression on me, unlike many other readers. I had the feeling as if this novel was one big metaphor, and I didn’t understand it.

Clearly, books that are odd and contain a lot of metaphors, don’t work for me. It makes me feel stupid. It’s why I don’t pick up poetry either; I don’t like having to dissect every sentence I read.

blue-watercolor-border-line-coverSo those were five books I didn’t enjoy as much as other readers seem to. Do you like these kind of posts? If so, I definitely have more unpopular opinions I’d like to share 😀

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