November 2015 Monthly Recap

Hi!Monthly RecapHappy Friday! December kicked off on an excellent note this week, with no shortage of warm sweaters {I recently added this festive pullover to my wardrobe}, Christmas specials {Rudolph and The Grinch will forever have my heart}, and cozy nights at home {with holiday songs playing on repeat as I plow through homework, of course!}. I typically post a Love List before the weekend begins, but I hope you will allow an exception today so that I can wrap up November in a monthly recap. How was your month, friends?

On Hayling Island, Young Lady Reading In The Sea In July 1936{I wouldn’t have checked out Anita Diamant’s The Boston Girl were it not for my summer reading assignment, but I sure am happy that I did! I truly enjoyed it.}

Reads: With a tech week and finals week in the same month, posts were, unfortunately, not as frequent in November! Even so, I still found the time to share a few reviews for your reading pleasure. Find a book that matches your interests: an emotional and gritty debut, a feminist take on revenge and rape culture, or a memoir-like novel for the historical fiction fan. As always, I’ve linked to my Lit Up Review posts as well; to my delight, this month’s review was on one of my favorite books of the year.

  • The Boston Girl by Anita Diamond | “Addie’s narration leaps off the page, due to Diamant’s sharp eye for detail, and her vibrant personality is more than enough to keep me – or any reader! – engaged.”
  • More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera | “Though it sports a bright, smiling cover and an uplifting title, the book is just as effective in making you angry, hurt, and stunned as it is in leaving you relieved, hopeful, and yes, happy.”
  • The Revenge Playbook by Rachael Allen | “As its title suggests, acts of revenge meet a small town football team, shaping a conversation on female empowerment, slut-shaming, and rape culture through a relatable and, sadly, all too realistic narrative.”
  • Daughter of Deep Silence by Carrie Ryan | “Carrie Ryan’s own take on revenge, Daughter of Deep Silence, is of the darker sort, bringing this year’s favorite literary trend, the unreliable narrator, to an extreme.”
  • Conviction by Kelly Loy Gilbert {a new review posted on Lit Up Review} | “You could market Conviction in just a few words, such as baseball, faith, and family, but to do so would be a discredit to Gilbert’s incredible story. The plot’s complexity is unprecedented.”

I read only four books in November, but the lower number is understandable; I simply had a busy month! Fortunately, I have an ideal combination to look forward to in December: a large pile of new library books and a week-long break from school. You can bet I’ll slip in a number of novels before the year’s end.

November 2015 BooksReviews will make an appearance sometime in the coming months!

GingersnapsEats: If you’re looking for a new holiday cookie to try – I myself am starting my Christmas baking this weekend! – may I suggest these tasty and flavorful gingersnaps? They are not only quick to whip up {a plus when there are presents to wrap and parties to attend}, but also fill your kitchen with the smells of seasonal spices. It’s a win-win all around in my book.

Picture Perfect 03{I could stare at Hannah’s portfolio all day; each of her photographs make use of her distinct artistic style and gorgeous lighting techniques.}

More: Reviews and recipes not enough reading material for you? No worries! I posted a new edition of Picture Perfect, a feature where I develop a collection of objects around a particular photography, just in time for the shorter and colder days that come with the change in Daylight Savings Time. I also shared another set of font downloads – no Comic Sans here – in November’s Font Freebies and participated in Top Ten Tuesday to highlight the debut authors I admire and love.

At Lit Up Review, I wrote about Laura Barcella’s Fight Like a Girl, a book on “fifty feminists who changed the world,” in a Waiting on Wednesdays post. It comes out in March, and I can’t wait to get my hands on it! Finally, in blogging news, I celebrated Ciao Bella’s fourth anniversary on Thanksgiving. Though I never wrote a post in celebration, I would still like to extend my love and thanks for your support! I’m constantly amazed at how much this little hobby of mine has grown, so here’s hoping for another wonderful year of blogging :)

Emily Jane{via Emily Jane}

Favorites: I’ve made it a habit to catch up on my Bloglovin’ feed after a long week; reading your terrific posts is a fine way to decompress! Here are a few of many that caught my eye throughout November.

  • I was delighted to see Emily return to blogging after a healthy and well-deserved hiatus! She looks absolutely stunning posing with her friends in her formal photos, and I adored the “behind-the-scenes” peek into her school life.
  • I mentioned #RealYA, a Twitter campaign launched by my fellow LUR writers Willa, Grace, and Emily, earlier in the week, but it’s so insightful and important of a trend, that I’ll happily share it again! If you missed it, Emily rounded up some of the best tweets of the night. Authors, aspiring or not, take note.
  • Dorothy’s advice posts are some of my favorites; she shares excellent tips and always seems to post them when I need the reminders myself! I bookmarked her “How to Get Out of a Funk” post to turn to when junior year is in full swing and I can’t seem to catch up.
  • I couldn’t be more excited for Hannah when she announced that a new member of her family would be arriving in May on Twitter! I wish her the best in her pregnancy, and, better yet, I was glad to see a book collection already in the works :)
  • Finally, I stumbled across Topaz’s site, Six Impossible Things, just last weekend, but I fell in love with my first read. Topaz writes so eloquently on a variety of topics that I’m sure this won’t be the last time I feature her work. I encourage you to give her posts a read as well!

december-month-christmas{via My Cute Graphics}

Looking Ahead: True to the song, December is the most wonderful time of year! I can’t wait to partake in the festivities of the season. To start? I’ll be seeing the Big Band Holidays concert with Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra this weekend.

Have an amazing weekend! B

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