Bookish Highlights

Life is changing so much everyday, but I thought I’d share a few of the highlights with you.

I recently got some pretty cool bookmail when I splurged on two indie books I was eyeing.

Snow-Crossed Letters by Chautona Havig, a.k.a. my upcoming Christmas read. It looks absolutely adorable, and I’m counting on there being some surprise encouragement, true to this author’s form. πŸ˜‰

Ignite by Jenna Terese looks SO, SO COOL. The cover, the concept, the fact it’s a duology… 😍😍

🀩

Speaking of books, the amazing leaders of my recovery/discipleship group hosted a bridal shower for me, and they made it book-themed.

The book titles. πŸ€—

Every detail was so special. ❀️

Yours truly, posing like the happy bean she is. 😁

It was a really special day, and I feel very loved. ❀️❀️

Also book and wedding related–I’ve been packing! Joshua just moved into the apartment, so I’m getting ready to move some of my stuff over there to make room here for more wedding prep. πŸ˜…

My lonely shelf getting ready to move on to new adventures.

I promise these aren’t just books. I have Funko Pops (quite a few actually 😁😁) and some keepsakes in there too. But it is also mostly books. *gulps and grins

I’ve been packing up baking stuff as well, getting rid of a few things, and managing Covid quarantine, but I somewhere in there I’ve managed to read a little, brainstorm a little, and keep up on GBBO.

I wonder what’s next. 😁

(Thank you for the bridal shower and the pictures, Pat!)

Fall Is Best Of All (Giveaway)

I can see fall coming before I feel it.

The light changes, softens into a gentle haze of gold and gray.

The days are gentler and the nights come sooner.

The weather shifts one day into cool, crisp, and exciting then back again into muggy, warm, and blistering.

Soon it will settle out into the first and not the latter and then I will need to find my sweater.

Soon.

Fall is my favorite season. The flavors, the colors, the clothes, and the overall vibe that says “of course you should stay in and read”. 🧑

This year in celebration of fall, I wanted to give away a small package of coziness…

Included in the giveaway are…

  • 2 mini mugs (orange and cream)
  • Small pumpkin candles
  • Empowered by Catherine Parks
  • Broken Strings by Eric Walters
  • …and whatever other goodies I decide to add!

(The absolutely yummy sweater background is not included. Giveaway only available to the contiguous US.)

ENTER HERE

I’ll be back next week with a couple reviews of the books, but for now HAPPY FALL!!

(Special thanks to Joshua for taking the giveaway picture before it rained. That was a close one. πŸ˜‚β€οΈ)

Dear Barnes and Noble

Dear Barnes and Noble,

Thank you for the mail. The postcard is adorable, and I’m so glad your new location is finally open, but I must confess something…

I already knew.

The moment I saw your distinctive sign go up on the husk of a former bookstore, I waited impatiently.

Your moving sale previously had been both crushing and a delight. A delight because I could finally afford to splurge on the beautiful volumes I’d much admired, but crushing because you were yet another bookstore to leave me.

And now you are back.

I visited with my fiance just a few days before your postcard. The shelves are a different shade of brown, everything is smaller and more open, but the magic is there.

So many books, surrounding me, beckoning, their bright covers turned out to face the room.

Wider pathways where I can shop in an empty bubble and focus solely on the books.

Special tables of books to take my notice, either with their sales or recommendations.

A wider selection with a lower quantity of each individual book, showing you’ve learned to adapt and compete in this brave new book world.

I’m glad you are back, and I will be too. Soon.

Love,

Kate

All About You Around the Blogosphere Tag

Kristianne Hassman made this tag look so fun, I stole it with her permission. πŸ˜‚ Thanks, Kristianne!

The Rules:
1. Answer the questions below on your blog.
2. Tag at least a couple other bloggers.
3. Have them answer these questions.

Question time!

1. What’s your favorite book/book series and why?

That’s a really hard one, since I’ve read a lot and loved most of it. It’s a pretty good problem to have. πŸ˜‰

I’d say right now, it’s The Mysterious Benedict Society series, especially books 1 and 3. They are just so engrossing, full of truth and whimsy together, and entirely too brilliant to boot. I was recently reminded of how good they are when I watched the Disney+ show of the first book.

2. Who is your favorite author?

Also a hard question. *rubs hands together* Sarah Holman is an old favorite in the indie world, Toni Shiloh is a new favorite (also indie, though she’ll be hybrid next year!), Ally Condie a favorite mainstream, and C.S. Lewis for nostalgia purposes. That was four, oops.

3. What is your favorite food?

I have two modes–avocado, cashews, and fruit when I’m feeling healthy or goooood, creamy, HEAVENLY mac and cheese. 🀀

4. What gives you inspiration for your books?

Honestly? Everything… My observations of my family and friends and random strangers, my own anxieties funneled into something manageable and solvable in a fictional realm, my inner wondering and wanderings, and Biblical teachings I’ve run across.

I’m also inspired by the fiction I read and the media I watch, especially if it’s an annoying TV show plotline I feel the need to fix.

5. If you could live anywhere, where would it be?

Somewhere UK-ish, and by that I mean foggy, rainy, perfect for growing vegetables, and with a sense of long history to it.

6. Are you an introvert or an extrovert?

Introvert, to the max. Before the pandemic, I’d say I could see myself becoming more outgoing (which isn’t the same as extroversion) but the past several months have really turned me back into a Hobbit for better and worse. πŸ˜‰

7. If you had a warning label, what would yours say?

“The emotions are strong with this one.”

A.k.a. a Star Wars reference warning you I am a Nerd and also explaining my emotional state. πŸ˜‰


This was such a fun tag! I hope you all enjoyed reading my answers. πŸ˜‰

I nominate . . .

Katja at Little Blossoms for Jesus
Jana T at Reviews from the Stacks

Liberty H. at Gone in a Dream

Feel free to answer these questions down in the comments as well!

Mini Book Haul! (Literally)

Book Outlet has my email address. 😬

Sometimes they send me promotions. 😍

Sometimes I follow the sale link and browse books. πŸ₯°

And sometimes I buy a couple. πŸ˜‰

The site is so huge, my favorite way to shop is by searching author names. Since I’ve been looking for a copy of The Last Voyage of Poe Blythe for forever, I typed in the author’s name and the most darling, adorable thing popped up.

A Penguin Mini of Matched! 😍😍

Pocket-sized, mass market, completely unabridged, and adorable as can be.

I’d heard about them a couple years ago (thanks for the fangirl session, Perry!), so I was really curious and excited to see one in person.

I added it to my cart, ordered, and forgot completely about it until my box came last week. πŸŽ‰

Behold.

It’s so litttttle.

I guess the horizontal format is to make it easy to read one handed, and I can see how even just from holding it while taking these pictures. πŸ˜‰

Little copy, big copy. πŸ’•

It’s such a cool idea, and I’m so glad it popped up on my book shopping escapades. πŸ˜‰

This is not a paid promotion, I’m just a nerd.

Book Friday Just Gets Better

First there were 150. Then it grew to 280. Now, this year the Indie Black Friday Book Sale has 400+ titles for free and $0.99. 😍😍

Within those titles are a lot of old favorites. πŸ˜‰

Emmeline by Sarah Holman. The first three books of her Kate’s Case Files series. (I love this series, y’all.) Perry Kirkpatrick’s Kitten File Mysteries, The Accidental Cases of Emily Abbott (including the most recent ones! 😍😍), and the Shallows trilogy. The entire Firmament Series is on sale too, and I just gotta remind you all–the most recent book wrecked me and I’d like to share my pain.

*runs around screaming*

🀩🀩🀩

If you’ve been waiting to try any of these authors or need to catch up on a series… now is the time. 😁

I’m also eyeing a few new books I just might give a try. A quick reminder, the prices aren’t live until Friday 11.27. πŸ˜‰

I scrolled by this cover a few times thinking the cover looked like a cute sister story, but then the blurb made me wonder–is this the same girl in different worlds??? And now I’m intrigued. 😁 (Link to book)

Rebekah Morris has a new series, y’all! I didn’t know more than just the first book were released, so… I’m tempted. πŸ˜‰

This one honestly sounds like such a cute idea, and I seriously love the vibes of that window. 😍

A matchmaker grannies series?!! With adorable covers??? Someone send help before I buy everything. πŸ’—

I need more superhero books. Simple as that. Okay, and the cover got me. πŸ˜‚πŸ˜›

All of my books and short stories are discounted for Black Friday through Cyber Monday as well.

But my favorite thing about this year? That’s more proof that it just gets better and better? 😍😍

I’m finally able to offer signed, deeply discounted paperbacks through my own internet store front. (Thanks to Perry for creating it on such short notice!) 😁🀩

Discounted prices will go live on Black Friday proper, but you can take a peek at the shop here.

I have to stop shopping now because there’s some pie to make for Thanksgiving. πŸ˜‰ I hope you all have a blessed celebration, whatever that may look like this year! πŸ˜‰

A Visit With An Old Friend

Books are amazing things.

Some shape our childhoods so much that when we reread them we suddenly understand ourselves in a whole new way.

Others feed us during tough times of doubt or lend a healthy, lighthearted escape during stressful months.

Still others open our eyes and fill us with new empathy and understanding of people who differ from ourselves.

And some rare, unique books shatter our lives with emotion, empathy, new loves, new thoughts, and beautiful, beautiful words.

And we can’t stop thinking about them.

The Book Thief is one such book for me.

I experienced it so deeply over a few months that I can picture scenes clearly in my mind and remember the strong emotions I had when I first read them. It remains one of my favorite (and most blogged about) bookworm experiences. πŸ˜‰

I tried to read it again, a year or so later. The first read-through I let myself “go wild” and underline beautiful quotes with a shy pencil. This time, I bought fine-tipped pens with the very aesthetic idea of doodling along in the book as I read. To deeper love to the story, and to make the book even more mine.

But I wasn’t ready.

The story was too fresh, the emotions too strong for me to love it like a stranger and a familiar face.

I decided to wait without really knowing why, and the waiting stretched on until last night.

I missed the book and pulled it from my shelf, then collected my doodling pen and shy pencil and opened the pages.

Four years since my first read of this book, and it feels like visiting with an old friend.

I cried over scenes I remember as well as my childhood home. Added overly cheerful (just my drawing style, oops) clouds to a dark passage about the sky. Sketched the young main character crying in the cold.

It was beautiful, and I will be reading it more.

Slowly, and doodling, to let the words seep in.

Pre-Orders Will Be the Death of Me

Just a short time ago, my income steadied enough to where I could seriously consider buying an ebook right when I heard of it. (As long as it was still pretty inexpensive. Let’s not go crazy. πŸ˜‰)

And then I tried my first pre-order and experienced the magic of it just appearing on the Kindle. It’s even more magical when you forget the release date so a random Tuesday becomes a new favorite book day. πŸ˜‰

Unfortunately (but really quite fortunately), my authors spent their quarantine well and the closer it gets to Christmas, the more new releases there are. πŸ˜¬πŸ˜¬πŸ˜‰

A Very Bookish Thanksgiving (by various authors) is the next installment in the anthology series I was part of last year. I’m so excited to read it, especially since quite a few of my favorite indie authors have contributed something. πŸ˜‰

This one is being delivered in just under a week. πŸ˜πŸ‘

YES, YES, YES! More Bremily, I mean, mystery. 😁😁 I’ve been reading Fair in War in installments as she posted it for Patrons, but I’ve saved the end for when I can inhale it in one sitting with my Kindle. 

*does some quick math* That’s only three weeks from now… Ahhhh! 😊

An Unlikely Proposal is actually pretty far out (alllll the way in next February 😱), but when my new favorite author gets such a cool book deal, I gotta support. 😁 Really can’t wait to read this one. ❀️

While I was thinking about this post, one of my pre-orders slid into my Kindle, but I thought I’d include it anyway. 

Isn’t the cover gorgeous?! 😍 Two authors whose work I know and love + two authors I get to try for the first time? Sign me up. πŸ‘

We’ll see how well I do at ignoring all the other amazing releases that come up, but for now these are the ones I’m super excited about. πŸ˜‰

My Top 5 Reads This Year (So Far!)

Heyo all! I’ve been a bit inactive on here for a while now, not keeping to schedule and disappearing for a while there (impromptu vacation that was awesome!), but I’m back! πŸ˜€

Today I was inspired by a pretty cool collab between Lilian S. and Jenna Terese where they each shared their top five favorite books they’ve read so far this year.

So I ran off to Goodreads, looked through what I’ve read so far this year, and found these not-to-be-missed lovelies… πŸ˜€

Not Write Now by Kyle Robert Schultz

How in the world did nonfiction make it on a list of Kate’s favorites? By being so humorous, helpful, and readable, that’s how. πŸ˜‰ I really enjoyed read this book and was quite encouraged by it’s reverse psychology.

Read my review here.

The Silence Between Us by Alison Gervais

This one rocked my world in the best of ways. The unique writing style, the relatable heroine, and most of all the representation of a community I know very little about made it one for the books, so to speak. I was sad to send it back to the library, and it’s now on my to-buy list. πŸ˜‰

Read my review here.

Quiet Power by Susan Cain

Bottom line: this book made me feel seen, loved, and pushed toward better relating toward the world with the strengths and weaknesses God has given me. Time traveling to give it to fifteen-year-old Kate in 3, 2, 1…

Read my review here.

The Trouble With Love by Toni Shiloh

This book was so, so real, relatable, HILARIOUS, and very Gospel-rich without being preachy. Also, shoes and food were celebrated, so… πŸ˜‰ I very much enjoyed it and am now devoted to the series. πŸ˜€

Read my review here.

Broken Strings by Eric Walters and Kathy Kacer

I still haven’t been able to review this one. I need to sit down for a long while and let myself process it completely and get back to you, but I can say that it made me (and my history/culture) feel very seen, was exceedingly well written, and was another I was sad to return to the library. πŸ˜‰

Read reviews on Goodreads.

There you go! Those are my favorites so far. πŸ˜‰ Thank you to Lilian and Jenna for the inpsiration. πŸ˜€

Tell me about your faves. πŸ˜€

A Very Bookish Christmas: Meet and Greet!

Yesterday I did a very cool author-y thing. I hit “publish” on the paperback version of Sincerely, Jem. 😁🀩

^^ A.k.a. the most exciting pop-up message of an author’s life. πŸ˜†

And today… IT’S AVAILABLE, Y’ALL!!

I’m extra excited because this is the first paperback book I’ve formatted myself. πŸ˜‰ #authorgoals

As are three other pretty cool books–the same ones that originally appeared in the A Very Bookish Christmas anthology. Would you like to meet them?

Sylvie of Amber Apartments by J. Grace Pennington is inspired by Anne of Green Gables, and I super excited to see how Grace mixes her characteristically deep themes with a slice-of-life storyline. πŸ˜‰ I’ve heard fantastic things about this story, and I’m a huge fan of The Firmament series and Implant also by this author, so… πŸ˜€

Gingerbread Treasures by Rebekah Jones (#exceedinglycutecover) is inspired by a Sherlock Holmes mystery, and it DEFINITELY gave me those vibes. If you’re a fan of mysteries with a slight historical feel, you’re definitely going to love this one.

Molly and Anna by Sarah Holman (Pollyanna-inspired) is a fantastic mixture of pretty cute and sweet while wrestling with a really hard topic. I appreciate the author’s willingness to bring up the topic of racism and do her best to address it.

In celebration of our new releases, we’re giving away a $15 Amazon giftcard! πŸ˜€ Find the giveaway HERE.

Merry Christmas in July!

Have you read any of these books? Or which one(s) are you looking forward to reading?