Top Ten Books I’m Looking Forward to in 2017

TTT

  1. Windwitch- Susan Dennard
  2. The Bone Witch-Rin Chupeco
  3. King’s Cage-Victoria Aveyard
  4. ROSEBLOOD- A. G. Howard
  5. Caraval-Stephenie Garber
  6. The Beast is an Animal- Peternelle van Arsdale
  7. Daughter of the Pirate King-Tricia Levenseller
  8. Spindle Fire-Lexa Hillyer
  9. A Court of Wings and Ruins- Sarah J. Maas
  10. Lord of Shadows-Cassandra Clare

Happy New Year and Welcome Book Challenges

It’s that time of year again: time for me to commit to more than I will actually follow through with. There are just so many good books and awesome challenges that I want to try them all. Here’s what I’m going to do for my challenges. Some I made up, some I found and I’ll link you to those.

readmyowndamnbooksbutton

Read My Own Damn Books mixed with a personal challenge to get my reading % on Netgalley to 70%. It’s a tall order, one I very much want to fill, so I shall cross my fingers. As far as the Read My Own Damn Books, I’ll be doing paper books and Netgalley books. I’m going to gather the titles of all my ARCs, write them down and throw them in a jar. Every month I’ll jiggle the jar and pull out a title to be finished by the end of that month.

Also, this is so bad, I know, but this will include any books I buy in 2017 b/c I have book-buying problems.

2017-discussion-challenge3

I’ve been writing a discussion post for months now, about reading with ADHD. I still haven’t posted it because I want it to be perfect. 7 months later and it’s still not live. This is going to be my first discussion post of the year. I hope to be relatable for those of you struggling, and a new vision for those of you with no experience in the matter. #LetsDiscuss2017

writing-reviews-challenge1

My goal is to write two reviews every month in 2017 for a total of 24 book reviews. So far I haven’t written one in quite a while so I’m hoping this challenge will get me back on track.

newtomechallenge

I think out of all the challenges I’m most excited about this one. Below are some of the suggestions. I’m looking forward to this one so much because I love exploring new series. For instance, I’m dying to read more books in Cassandra Clare’s The Mortal Instruments series because I MUST know how it ends and I MUST be able to read Lady Midnight. My goal is to read 12 books that are new to me. Below you’ll find a quote from the host’s site.

Anything “new” to you. For example…
–First time reading an author
–first book in a series
–first book you’ve read from a series (doesn’t have to be book one)
–first time trying a genre/subgenre
–a debut book from an author (even if you’ve read them before)

Then I have the miscellaneous ones:

  • FOR EVERY FIVE BOOKS I GET I’LL GET RID OF ONE
  • I will participate at least two memes a month
  • And, probably the most important challenge: FIND MY KINDLE

Top Twelve Books I Read in 2016 (Top Ten Tuesday)

Let’s Get Our Read On with Top Ten Tuesday!

TTT

A year of reading comes to a close and it’s time for me to share with you my favorite books that I read in 2016! These books don’t necessarily have a published date of 2016; I’ve just read them and absolutely loved them. This is a meme started by The Broke and the Bookish: Top Ten Tuesday. Ten is a suggested # of books to list, I picked twelve books for my Top Ten Tuesday post because I had so much more than ten. My favorite 2016 books will be listed in no particular order. Unfortunately, I haven’t reviewed Without further ado, I present to you those twelve favorite books of 2016:

hex-hall

My Top Ten Tuesday begins with this book I purchased at a signing with the author. I devoured the series within a week.

undertow

This was a chilling book that was far too realistic. That’s why I loved it so much.

between-the-devil-and-the-deep-blue-sea

All I remember about this book is that I loved it from the first chapter through the end of the series.

the-scorpio-races

This was a sad but beautiful story of the connection between a mythical beast and a human. I wish it was a series.

saga-volume-one

I read this graphic novel series in two days. Breast feeding on the cover? LOVE.

once-upon-a-time-reds-untold-tale

A re-telling of one of my favorite Brother’s Grimm’s stories. This was twisted in the same way.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

the-modern-guide-to-witchcraft

I read a lot of non-fiction and this not only had the most beautiful cover of all the non-fiction I read, but also went into more detail than others I’ve read of the same topic.

clockwork-angel-the-infernal-devices

I loved how The Infernal Devices trilogy took place in between The Mortal Instruments series. I was fortunate enough to find out that it was written this way before I got to the third book so I could read it as the author intended.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

the-program

I read this series in a week. For some reason it took longer than the two books should but I read them and that’s all that matters.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

my-best-friends-exorcism

A terrifying read that entertained me throughout the book.

and-the-trees-crept-in

I won this book through The Novl and couldn’t sleep without my Himalayan Salt lamp on the brightest setting.

the-diabolic

A young woman was created to protect another. Their devotion to each other is beautiful.

Oceanic Tarot Deck – A Beginner Friendly Deck

Oceanic Tarot Book Cover Oceanic Tarot
Tarot
Jayne Wallace
Divination
Cico Books
2016
Card deck
64
Publisher (Cico Books)

Explore the past, present, and future with Oceanic Tarot.

Discover the ancient art of tarot with this beautiful ocean-themed set of 78 cards and an accompanying book, stunningly illustrated by Jane Delaford-Taylor. The traditional major and minor arcana are translated into a magical world of mermen, mermaids, and sea creatures. The book reveals the interpretations for each card, as well as explaining how to lay the cards out for different types of reading, so you will easily learn how to draw out meaning from the past, gain insight into the present, and predict the future.

Uh, because, mermaids. Duh.

I was given the Oceanic Tarot deck to review from Cico books and, therefore, *squeee*. The Oceanic Tarot deck is how it sounds: ocean themed. The author scuba dives and their work reflects their love for the ocean. It’s no surprise that this is the theme of the deck. Her love for the ocean shines through the cards.

The deck comes in a very sturdy box, made to be proudly displayed. The box opens from the side, a cute feature that I haven’t come across yet. I still can’t get over how cool the box is. It now lives beside my Beautiful Creatures deck.

Let’s talk about the book

The booklet that comes with the Oceanic Tarot deck is more than a LWB (little white booklet). It’s just as much a work of art as the deck is. A female mermaid reaching up to the sky is displayed on the matte cover: “Oceanic Tarot: Discover the Secrets and Wisdom of the Sea.” The Oceanic Tarot LWB is in full color and the size of a small, square book.

Each card, the author explains, has both an “easy meaning” and a “quick advice.” Those two features make the deck ideal for a beginner and a one-card drawing. Practical tips are included, covering imprinting your energy to reading the cards.

How one begins to read the cards follows in the next section. That part of the book goes step-by-step to guide the beginner through the cards. For instance, the Oceanic Tarot book suggests that you start by setting your intention, and addresses the idea that no one else is to touch your cards. Following that, the author outlines some simple spreads, and then spreads that are more complicated. I, personally, won’t be at the point where I can do those anytime soon.

How the book makes reading so simple

The LWB follows other decks in the sense that it gives the basics generally in the same order as others. However, the author adds not only the basic introduction for Tarot, but also suggestions on how to read the cards. You’ll find in the next section that there is a basic something or other that the author includes in the cards.

For the ease of the reader, the author lays out the Oceanic symbols for each suit in a chart. She also goes on to give a one word key term from Ace through Ten by the numbers. I found this incredibly beneficial for the beginner because it’s a guide through the cards that still allows your intuition to prosper through the reading.  Another feature of the Oceanic Tarot in the LWB for the minor arcana is that there are meanings for “you” cards. Those cards are the o=positions of a spread that reveal you and your current situation.

The Oceanic Tarot cards

The cards are meant to stimulate your intuition. I’ve heard that the proper way to read Tarot is by using your intuition rather than memorizing the meanings. I appreciate the simplicity of the cards. The Oceanic Tarot deck, much like the Under the Roses Lenormand deck, has little else going on in the background of the major arcana. I mention only the major Arcana because the minor arcana are simply the number of the suit with a generic background.

The Oceanic Tarot deck’s Minor Arcana at first disappointed me. I wanted to see more artwork than what it was giving me but I quickly learned that the lack of unique pictures didn’t detract from the cards. At the bottom of every card, both major arcana and minor arcana, have a keyword. I absolutely love that. For instance, the King of Cups’ keyword is “understanding.” The book goes on to say that the King can be distant sometimes. By the look on his face I could tell that he was out of focus, transfixed by some thought he had.

The illustrations of the cards is simple water-works, unlike the Tarot of the Night or Tarot Gothica. This is simple and doesn’t try to make the pictures seem realistic. The artist embraces what she’s good at and it works well with the cards. In fact, I don’t think more “realistic” (for lack of a better word) illustrations would look as good as this. Whereas Tarot Gothica looks like a picture taken on a camera, the Oceanic Tarot doesn’t try to pretend to be something it’s not.

 

The Crystal Healer – Crystal Magic-

The Crystal Healer: Crystal Prescriptions that Will Change Your Life Forever Book Cover The Crystal Healer: Crystal Prescriptions that Will Change Your Life Forever
Philip Permutt
New Age
Cico Books
2007, 2016
Physical paperback
144
Publisher (Cico Books)

Crystal therapy has long been used as a gentle system of holistic healing. By drawing on the unique qualities of crystals such as quartz and amethyst, you can balance the energy fields around your body, home and office to bring well-being, and gain health benefits. Crystals can help soothe emotional problems such as anxiety, mood swings, or shyness, as well as physical symptoms such as migraines and allergies. In addition, crystals can act as natural energy boosters and aid in detoxifying our systems. With crystal remedies for more than 250 common ailments and a directory of 250 crystals, as well as detailed explanations of the most effective healing methods, this book is the ultimate guide to healing with crystals. Illustrated with color photographs, and supplemented with practical exercises and case studies, The Crystal Healer is the ultimate practical reference from a highly respected healer and teacher.

Let’s start healing!

I have many, many books on crystals. Some of them are simply books on the different types of crystals and their healing properties, that only brush on different ways to use them. Others, however, like The Crystal Healer by Philip Permutt go into extensive detail on how to use those crystals to heal different ailments. Many people say that crystals emit vibrations that can affect the human body in positive ways. However, something that I admired greatly is that The Crystal Healer admits that science has not proven the assertions many people make. That being said, it’s my belief that crystals can have healing properties and so, too, does the author.

How the book is set up

The first section prepares you for crystal work. The next section guides you through using them. Then, partway through the book the different types of crystals are presented with their healing properties. The different crystals are organized by color, starting with Quartz because of how easy it is to obtain and how many different uses it has. I was thrilled at how “The Crystal Finder” was organized because it helped me identify the many crystals that I have. Other crystals books simply organize the different rocks by their most commonly known names, which makes it incredibly difficult to find the crystal I’m looking for.

There isn’t just one way to work with crystals

The Crystal Healer provides a blueprint for different ways of working with the crystals. One I was very excited to come across was working with the crystals and your Chakras. It’s something I have yet to do, because I’ve been waiting to use them with another person. The book, however, said that instead of placing the crystals on your body, it’s possible to put the crystals around your body and experience the same healing vibrations as if they were laying on your body.

All the crystal books I’ve read so far touch on the idea of making crystal elixir. While I haven’t had a strong inclination to do so, I’m considering making them for myself. I was glad to see that Philip Permutt gives you less invasive ways to make the crystal-charged water. For instance, he says that instead of placing the crystal directly into the water you intend to charge with your crystal, you can put it in a container holding the crystal inside of the water which you will be drinking.

It kept going!

I was pleased to find that The Crystal Healer didn’t end with the Crystal finder. Rather, it ended with a chapter providing more crystal remedies for the reader to try. Philip Permutt suggests crystals for various ailments of both the body and the mind, and offers different ways to work with the crystals. For instance, if you’re trying to combat the mental and emotional symptoms associated with aging, you could place rose quartz crystals into a normal bath.

Who would this book suit?

The Crystal Healer is a book that goes more in depth than simply naming the crystals and their various uses. Philip Permutt’s book on crystals gives you instructions on how to use the crystals and helps you build a connection with them. This is an excellent book for a beginner and a step-by-step guide on different ways to work with your crystals. Although this is not the first book I’ve read on crystals, and I feel rather confident that I know how to use them, I will be referring back to The Crystal Healer throughout my life.

Here’s How I’m Going to Protest Trump

When I saw the election results I was crushed…

For me and my friends and all the POC and LGBTQIA, the Muslims and the women. I don’t like feeling like I’m not in control. I think that’s true for most of us. I thought that there was nothing I can do about this situation, that the worst has come and there’s no bouncing back from this. Then I thought about it.

There is something I can doMany things I can do. I found an article on this topic so I picked a few things out that I can commit to that mean a lot to me.

  • I will volunteer with Planned Parenthood. Above pretty much all else, a woman’s right to her body, and I believe that abortion and birth control has helped give women back their lives. Before both, women were baby-makers and housewives. Birth  control gave us power. Abortion isn’t new. It’s been around for a long-ass time and our older women fought tooth-and-nail to give us that control. No man should ever have the right to take that away from me.I don’t know what I’ll be doing there. Ideally I’d be escorting women through protesters but we shall see! Trump and Pence want to do away not only with abortion but with Planned Parenthood. No. No freaking way.

 

  • I’m going to donate to food banks and when I can’t do that I’m going to work at the soup kitchen. Right now all my food goes to me or my pets but I’d love to give as much as I can. Right now, that means that I will give my time and service. Trump doesn’t care about people living in poverty. I’m going to care for them since our new president won’t.

 

  • When I’m able, I’ll support journalism by buying print magazines/newspapers. For now I will read news on the internet, particularly news on Muslim-Americans and Islam. I don’t want to read the Q’uaran, it looks super boring (terrible reason, I know) but I do want to be more knowledgable on the matter so I can defend and educate people who hate on/attack Muslims.

    As you’ve heard, Trump wants to sue journalists and create a total and complete ban of Muslims in the US. That includes refugees.

 

  • Trump doesn’t believe in climate change, so I’m going to do my part. I’m going to change how I use energy and renew, recycle, reuse and do fuller loads of laundry and dishes, and take shorter showers.I

I’ve got this shit, guys. I’m not going down without a fight. This is me protesting Trump. I will never call Donald my president and I won’t let him take America down with him.

NaNoWriMo and TBR

I’m a bit of a rebel. I haven’t been feeling very creative lately but I very much wanted to be a part of NaNoWriMo, as usual. So, I found something that works for me: blogging. I have several blogs so I’m trying to write about 1,450 words a day; some days I focus on this one and my Tarot blog, other days on just one.

Part of my reason for blogging as my NaNo project is that I have waaaayyy too many things out for review now, and I take pleasure in every review that I write. I want to keep that going, keep feeling good, in November that works for me. So, I’ll be reviewing things daily, if not all on the same blog at once. The goal is to get 15 reviews out in the month of November, on any of my blogs combined. So far I’ve posted 4 reviews with another on the way. And I’ve blogged 8 or 9 days so far, my goal was every day. One of the ways to accomplish this goal is by giving you updates.

So, I have a LOT to review, both physical books and Tarot decks, and e-books from netgalley so I’m hoping to crank one out a day. Let’s see how it goes!