‘Tis the Damn Readathon Wrap Post

Aloha Bibliofriends!

In March I took part in the Taylor Swift based ‘Tis the Damn Readathon with my friend who is one of the biggest Swifties I know! Quite often my reading ambitions fall on the fantasy side of magical realism so I always end up giving myself too much to do and then fall out with myself when I don’t hit the goals: #ownworstenemy
I came up with a TBR of about 7 books as I wanted to try and hit all of the album prompts – you can read about that here!
Right towards the end of the month I hit a massive reading slump which probably killed my blog vibe too to be honest. I have just started reading Crescent City whilst it’s still the Easter holidays so I’m hoping that drags me out of it.

  • Album: Taylor Swift / Prompt: Read a Memoir / Book: The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher

I love the Star Wars franchise and actually won a copy of this book through Bookmarks which is an online research panel lead by Penguin. It was the perfect choice for a memoir and it was so strange reading this knowing that she tragically passed away shortly after its publication. You read my review here.

  • Album: Fearless / Prompt: Do some meditation (non bookish prompt)

I didn’t read anything for this but I do meditate every morning before going to work so this felt like an easy prompt to achieve.

  • Album: Speak Now / Prompt: Listen to an Audiobook / Book: The Authenticity Project by Clare Pooley

I was pleasantly surprised by this audiobook and ended up adoring its plot and characters. There was a day at school during remote learning where we set the children on an off-timetable creativity day so we didn’t have a live lesson schedule, this audiobook was the soundscape to my redecorating the classroom and laminating all of the resources. It’s one of those I could listen to again and again! Read my review here.

  • Album: Red / Prompt: Read a book with red on the cover / Book: The Bone Shard Daughter by Andrea Stewart

This was a late addition to my TBR as I unexpectedly got approved for this on NetGalley in preparation for the paperback release of the book. This was such a great SFF book with a really curious twist on magic. I’m so intrigued that I can’t wait to see where the series goes next. Read the review here.

  • Album: 1989 / Prompt: Read a book with a number in the title / Book: Locke and Key Volume Two: Head Games by Joe Hill

So I cheated on this one a little – I didn’t have time to read my TBR selection for this but I figure it counts right? I watched the Locke and Key series on Netflix and was so captivated that I had to start reading the graphic novels too. They’re a little different to the TV show in terms of the timeline but it still satisfies that void whilst I’m waiting for Season Two to drop.

  • Album: Reputation / Prompt: (Blank Space Tile) Read a book Taylor has referenced / Book: Peter Pan (Audiobook)

I used a Blank Space tile for this one as I struggled to think of an idea for any of the prompts. I came across an audiobook of Peter Pan read by a whole cast of celebs including Joanna Lumley, David Walliams, Kit Harrington and others. It was put together by Martin Jarvis who did the Good Omens audiobook which I also loved. I enjoyed exploring this as it was a classic which I haven’t read before.

  • Album: Lover / Prompt: Do some self care (non bookish prompt)

This prompt happened lots in March, mostly with ice cream! 😂

  • Album: Folklore / Prompt: Read a book based on mythology / Book: Lore by Alexandra Bracken

When I discovered this book was a standalone, it rocketed up my TBR and I was definitely in the mood for some contemporary, yet magical YA last month. It was such a fun read and I enjoyed the way the author mixed the ancient mythology into a modern world context. There might be a review of it coming soon if I get time.

  • Album: Evermore / Prompt: Read a mystery or thriller / Book: The Absolute Book by Elizabeth Knox

Again, this was a little bit of a cheat one as The Absolute Book is classed as Fantasy but after reading it I feel that it definitely has a mystery twist too – I was mystified through all 640 pages, right up until the Epilogue! 😂 I read this for NetGalley so this week’s job is to get the review finished!


That’s my ‘Tis the Damn Readathon Wrap! It was so much fun to take part in a Readathon again, I can’t remember the last time that happened. Thanks so much to my friend @megalynreads on Twitter for suggesting it and to the fabulous team over at ‘Tis the Damn Readathon for putting together the most comprehensive Swiftathon I’ve ever seen! It definitely helped motivate me to keep my reading goals on track in March!

Did any of you take part in the readathon? What did you read in March?

As always, drop me a comment to chat! ☺️

T xx

‘Tis the Damn Readathon TBR!

Hi Bibliofriends!

I was SUPER excited when a friend messaged me literally yesterday to tell me about the ‘Tis the Damn Season Readathon based around Taylor Swift’s album that is happening this very month and hosted by some fabulous people (you can find out more specific details by watching this YouTube Video by Drinking By My Shelf). Of course, this is also the perfect excuse for me to keep playing my favourite Taylor albums on repeat again! 😂🙈

The Readathon centres around Taylor’s 9 different albums with a choice of prompts for each. The idea is you tick off each album from the bingo-board style graphic based on the house in the Lover video but you can do as many or as little prompts as you like! There’s a brilliant website set up for it (visit here) where you can find all of the prompts, info about your hosts and a link to some exciting merch. Let the Readathon begin!

My TBR

Taylor Swift

Picture to Burn – Post a pick of your book on social media: so I don’t know which book this will be yet but I’m pretty sure I can manage this at some point in March…

Fearless

Breathe – Do some meditation: I do this every week day anyway so this will be an auto-achieve.
Fifteen – Read a YA Book: At least three of my books for other album prompts are YA so that will be covered there.

Speak Now

Speak Now – Listen to an audiobook: The Authenticity Project by Clare Pooley

Red

Red – Read a book with a red cover: The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher
22 – Take a dance break:This seems like so much fun that I just had to include this as well. Headphone kitchen discos are pretty much my Friday nights anyway in lockdown!

1989

1989 – Read a book with a number in the title: Eight Will Fall by Sarah Harian

Reputation

(Free choice > Blank Space Tile) – A book Taylor has referenced: Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier

Lover

Lover – Read a predicted 5* read: All Our Hidden Gifts (ARC) by Caroline O’Donoghue
You Need To Calm Down – Self Care: With the children coming back into school like normal from 8th March I’m predicting a bit of self care will definitely be needed this month!

Folklore

Folklore – A book based on mythology or a retelling: Star Daughter by Shveta Thakrar

Evermore

Evermore – TBR Jar Pick: I think I’m going to let the fates decide this one nearer the time!


Eeeeeekkk! I’m so excited to finally start this readathon! I had a reading sprint last night to finish the book I was reading (I also wanted to try and finish it whilst it was still February) so I could go straight into March cracking on with ‘Tis the Damn Readathon!

Are you taking part in ‘Tis the Damn Readathon or is it something you’re definitely going to do if you’re just finding out about it right now? What books are on your March TBR or which ones are your biggest anticipated reads for this month? Leave me a link to your TBRs and blog posts!

Take care and stay safe Bibliofriends,
T xx

#BookTag – The Evermore Book Tag

Howdy Bibliofriends!

One of my (few) favourite things about 2020 was the fact that we got not just one, but TWO!! brand new Taylor Swift albums!! Now, before these last two albums I wouldn’t really have considered myself a diehard Swiftie but now… OMG I have fallen well and truly “right down the rabbit hole” (pun intended!). Evermore and Folklore are practically on repeat in their own little playlist (with Miley’s Plastic Hearts album thrown into it as well). These tunes have been my absolute saviour through the final part of last year.

I had so much fun doing the Folklore Book Tag back during the Summer that I just had to tag myself in the Evermore Book Tag when I happened to come across it on the wonderful Riddhi’s Whispering Stories blog!

If you’re looking for a fairly accurate way of sorting your favourite Taylor songs the Jessee Pinkman has made an amazing set on song sorters on Tumblr! Check them out here – they’re amazing!


The evermore Book Tag!

Rules:

  • Link back to the original creator’s post: the fantabulous Ahaana @Windows to Worlds – seriously go check out her blog!!
  • Tag at least 5 people
  • Thank the person who tagged you and link back to their post!! – Thanks so much Riddhi (blog linked above)!!
  • willow: a book with a character you can’t help but fall in love with
    I love how catchy this song is – and yes, I have downloaded all of the different versions of this song as well! 🙈

Rhysand from A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J Maas – all the damn time, even the I try so hard not to!

  • champagne problems: a book with a broken relationship
    This song is probably one of my (many) favourites. I love the way the lyrics just trip out with the melody and the sad story that’s told!

Hamlet by William Shakespeare – poor, poor Ophelia – I can almost imagine Hamlet’s and Ophelia’s characters being reversed in Champagne Problems – it could so easily have been written about them!

  • gold rush: a book you love with all your heart
    It’s fair to say that Gold Rush is my second favourite song on the whole album – it’s so catchy and I really like how the chorus is so incredibly different from the verses.

Ok, for this prompt, there are two books on this whole list that could be interchangeable here and they are: The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab
and
The Throne of Glass series by Sarah J Maas
I love both of them so much.

  • ’tis the damn season: a book in which the character reconnects with their family/hometown
    This song has definitely grown on me with it’s melodramatic Christmassy feel. I think of this song being narrated by Betty talking about James and how their relationship would have fared (or not…) into adulthood.

The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow immediately sprang to mind for this due to the way the Eastwood sisters come together in the storyline. It could also very easily have been a book I finished reading right at the end of 2020 called Fire and Heist by Sarah Beth Durst – the plot is centred around bringing a family back together, with added were-dragons of course!

  • tolerate it: a book with a suffering relationship
    Admittedly this song tends to just blend into the background for me when I’m busy doing other things. It has a powerful message though, reading between the lines and all that!

The Folk of the Air series by Holly Black – there’s plenty of suffering relationships to choose from here – I won’t spoil them all but when you really stop to read into them there’s some pretty bad manipulation and control going on in the land of Faerie! 

  • no body, no crime: a book about murder
    I love HAIM so much from the first time I ever heard of them when they supported Florence + the Machine on one of their tours. I was a little sad that they weren’t a bit more prominent in this song but I love the classical country crime song elements that this track brings.

Lethal White by Robert Galbraith – I’m not normally a crime fan although I absolutely love the Strike series and am patiently awaiting the release of Troubled Blood in paperback (even though I know it’s going to be a hefty brick). The Strike novels just seem to get bigger and better with each new one that’s brought out.

  • happiness: a book that’s an old favourite, but you just can’t relate to anymore
    Sometimes this song comes on and I get right into singing along to the tune and everything whereas other times it just seems to blend into the background again – it’s a real mood song for me.

The Twilight Series by Stephanie Meyer was the ultimate choice for this one. I know if has its army of devout fans out there but dare I say… I think I’m just over Twilight?!

  • dorothea: a book featuring an old (or strong) friendships
    I read an article by someone who was convinced this song was all about Swift’s friendship with Selena Gomez. It’s quite often a track I’ll skip to be honest.

Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman was my pics for this as I love the friendship, banter and rivalry between Aziraphale and Crowley.

  • coney island: a book that made you cry // completely destroyed you
    I just can’t listen to this song!!! It makes me so depressed! 😂 At least the prompt kinda fits though!

See the Gold Rush answer for this one – both the endings of The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwa and the Throne of Glass Series by Sarah J Maas can be interchangeable here. I can’t get through either without reaching for the tissues and the bookish hangover cures!

  • ivy: a book that was an unexpected favourite
    Ivy is a song which I’ve grown to love a little more each time I listen to it – it’s definitely not a skippable track anymore.

I’ve chosen Woven in Moonlight by Isabel Ibanez for this prompt – not because I didn’t expect that it would be any good, but just because I wasn’t expecting to absolutely adore it as much as I did! The sequel comes out this year and I am so ready for it! Bring back Ximena and the magical woven animals! 😍

  • cowboy like me: a book about thieves, or criminals
    Ok, this one is probably my favourite on the whole album – it’s the first one I’ll play from my playlist. The chorus just gets stuck in my head and I keep singing it over and over. I think it’s fabulous!

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo was my immediate choice for this – I’m just yelling out HEIST in my head! I think as far as my own reading goes, Bardugo has set the absolute yardstick for the heist novel! I’m a big fan!

  • long story short: a book that made up your childhood
    Again, another catchy song that I just can’t help but dance along to! 😂

I can;t pick anything other than the Harry Potter series for this one. I grew up waiting for these books to be released which would sometimes be years! It was always a tradition that my Nan would preorder them for me as she knew how much I adored the series – and yes, confession time: I did shed a few tears at the end of the Warner Brothers Studio Tour seeing that screen that says, “No story lives unless someone wants to listen. The stories we love best do live in us forever. So whether you come back by page or by the big screen, Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home.”

  • marjorie: a book with a moving message
    Marjorie has a few lyrics in it which were like a massive lightbulb going PING when I really sat and listened to it properly and those words actually helped me to claw my way out a certain hole at the end of last year! They’re probably some of the most poignant lyrics I’ve ever heard to be honest and I could really relate to them in that moment.
    Never be so polite, you forget your power / Never wield such power, you forget to be polite

It wasn’t until I was scrolling through Goodreads that this read came back to me and like my lightbulb moment in marjorie, the lightbulb went off here to match Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman to this prompt. It’s such a moving story with a powerful message.

  • closure: a series in which you NEED to read the next book
    Closure is a song that I’m not particularly that fond in fairness – there are so many others I prefer more.

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline is one of my ALL-TIME favourite novels and I know that the sequel Ready Player Two has been out since November so I could literally order it and read it ASAP but I really do NEED to read it! 🙈🙃

  • evermore: the perfect conclusion to an extremely long (but worth it) series
    The tune to this sounds so simplistically beautiful and I love both of Taylor’s duets with Bon Iver – this song was so perfect for winter too.

So when I first read Lord of the Rings by J.R.R Tolkien – I read each volume back to back as I have the special anniversary edition where they are all in the one book – me being me, I have to read only one book at a time so when I started the Fellowship I knew I was going to have to read all the way through to the Appendices before I could pick up another book. It was so worth it though. I’d love to reread the whole series again soon. Middle Earth is probably my favourite of all of the fictional worlds and so often I’m whinging that a book ends with a big battle and doesn’t fully explain the aftermath – that’s definitely NOT the case with LOTR! Haha!


This was such a fun tag to explore to share my love of books and my love of evermore! Thank you so much Riddhi and Ahaana for bringing this fabulous tag into my bloglife!

Are you constantly playing folklore or evermore on repeat? What are your favourite tracks? I’m not great at tagging people so consider yourself tagged if you fancy like giving the evermore book tag a go!
As always, drop me a comment below to chat! ☺️

T xx

#BookTag – Taylor Swift Folklore Tag

It’s TuesTAG time,

This album…!!! 😍 By far my favourite music to have come out of this crazy pandemic. To me, this is Swift at her musical best; don’t get me wrong I enjoy the more poppy upbeat songs but I feel like Folklore lets her songwriting and musical genius really shine.

I found this little tag whilst browsing on iheartlandx’s bookloversblog and knew that I just had to do it!
Here are the rules for the tag:

  • Link to the original creator: Ilsa @ A Whisper Of Ink
  • Tag at least 3 people.
  • Declare the rules and list of prompts in your post
  • Thank whoever who tagged you and link to their post.

Taylor Swift
Folklore
Book Tag

The 1: a book with an ending that left you speechless

The Wicked King by Holly Black – that cliffhanger had me desperate for the final book and I had really had to discuss it with someone but none of my friends had read it – ergo… speechless!

cardigan: a book that makes you feel happy and sad all at once

Turtles All The Way Down by John Green – I can’t really explain why. It just gives me both happy and sad vibes but I can’t pinpoint exactly which part about it makes me feel that way. I listened to it on audiobook and thought the narrator sounded automated, that may have had something to do with it…

the last great american dynasty: a book with a fascinating and well told story

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline – I was gripped from start to finish. I’d happily live inside that book! It’s not like anything I’ve ever read before or since to be honest.

exile: a book you wish you hadn’t read

Less Than Zero by Bret Easton Ellis – I had quite high expectations as I had heard lots of good things about the author but reading this felt like I had literally wasted hours of my life. It is definitely not a book for me!

my tears ricochet: a book that made you cry uncontrollably

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes – surely this needs no explanation?!

mirrorball: a book that feels like it was written for you

I always say this about my horoscopes… they are scarily accurate! I honestly haven’t come across a book that feels like it was actually written for me yet. 

seven: a childhood book that makes you feel nostalgic

The BFG and Matilda by Roald Dahl – my Grandpa bought me the books from a car boot sale and Dahl fast became my favourite storyteller after that.

august: a book that reminds you of summer

Summer at the Lake by Erica James – I found it on a bookshelf at our hotel in Cape Verde and read it out there on the beach. Part of it is based in Italy where I spent another amazing summer so it gives me all the holiday vibes!

this is me trying: a book that deals with loneliness and sadness

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman – the character is just crafted with such a vulnerability. It was a really moving book.

illicit affairs: a book that gave you a book hangover

The Harry Potter series – finishing that final page and knowing that I could never ‘unknow’ how it all ended… it put me into the biggest book hangover or reading slump of my life!

invisible string: a book that came into your life at the exact right time

Remember This When You’re Sad by Maggie Van Eijk – it was the wake-up call I needed.

mad woman: a book with a female character you adore

Romanov by Nadine Brandes – her portrayal of Anastasia was so divine, she wrote a brilliant character. I cried so much at the ending and wished that this story could have been Anastasia’s actual ending as opposed to the harsh reality.

epiphany: a book that is haunting

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck or Room by Emma Donoghue – they both leave me with the chills for different reasons. Room because it’s horrifying to think of what Jack and his Ma went through. Then Of Mice and Men because, Lennie! It’s a sad reality of our world that people like Lennie still get treated differently today because of misconceptions surrounding their disabilities. In a way that’s more haunting to me than ghost stories.

betty: a book couple that fills you with yearning

Do I have to say Rhys and Feyre again – it seems I pick them for everything couple related?!
OK Rhys and Feyre for all of the feels or Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy for the good old fashioned romance!

peace: a book character you’d die for because you love them so much

Aragorn from Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien – I’d be his Arwen and toodle on over to Middle Earth any day!

hoax: a book you thought you were going to love but didn’t

Serpent and Dove by Shelby Mahurin – this had so much hype about it and was touted as the witchy story we’d all been waiting for, but I really didn’t feel it – the cinnamon buns sounded delicious though!


That’s the Folklore book tag! Thanks so much to Ilsa for creating it! If you’re a big Folklore fan then consider yourself tagged and have a go yourself!

Have you listened to Folklore yet? What are your favourite songs? Is Betty really the name of Blake Lively and Ryan Gosling’s third daughter… Will we ever know? 😂 As always, drop me a comment to chat or leave your links to your own tags and I’ll be sure to check them out!

T xx

#BookTag – Taylor Swift Lover Book Tag

Hey Bibliofriends,

Not gonna lie, Taylor Swift’s new album Folklore has been playing on repeat ever since it’s extremely welcome release so I thought it would be a brilliant time to tackle the Taylor Swift ‘Lover’ Book Tag which I found over on Chocolate’n’Waffles blog here.

You can find the original post here on Nish & Ngoc’s Book Nook.

The Rules:

  • Link back to the original creator of the book tag (Nish & Ngoc).
  • Thank the person that tagged you and link to their post (above).
  • 3. TAG AS MANY SWIFTIES AS YOU WANT! (Or non-Swifties, maybe inspire them to listen to our Queen)

I Forgot That You Existed – A book that you want to forget you ever read

I can’t actually think of a book that I hated so much that I want to forget I ever read it so perhaps I wish I could forget ever reading Harry Potter or the Throne of Glass series just so that I can experience them again with fresh eyes.

2. Cruel Summer – A book you turn to when the going gets rough

To be honest, I have so many books on my shelves that I rarely get chance to reread many novels but whenever I head into a little bit of a slump I tend to pick up something either something by Erica James as I love her stories or a chick-lit style romance set in Italy – it’s my favourite city and always makes me feel happy to reminisce about my trip there. 

3. Lover – Your book OTP

I come back to Rhysand and Feyre every…single…damn…time! 

4. The Man – Your fave kick-ass female protagonist

This one is so tough – I think Kady Grant and Hannah Donnelly from the Illuminae series really lay their gauntlets down. Failing that, I wouldn’t mess with Manon from Throne of Glass either!

5. The Archer – A book with good mental health representation

I’m struggling to find any fiction novel that I have read that could fit this brief… Maybe the Six of Crows duology as the characters have to each overcome their various burdens and the way they all pull together as a team shows how important good friendships are in overcoming your demons and accepting people for who they are.

Non-fiction-wise: Remember This When You’re Sad by Maggie Van Eijk really helped me out during a dark time. 

6. I Think He Knows – Your fave fictional crush

Dare I admit this but… Snape?! Of course, Alan Rickman playing him in the movies helped me to see and hear him in my head when reading the later HP books. There’s just something about that voice! 😂🙈

7. Miss Americana & The Heartbreak Prince – Fave angsty romance

Alessandra and the Shadow King in The Shadows Between Us – just get it together already!!

8. Paper Rings – Book with an ugly cover that you absolutely adored

The Fairy Tales of Charles Perrault by Angela Carter – to be in-keeping with Carter’s retellings of the stories inside the cover features a really grubby foot inside a stiletto slingback. Feet are a big no-no for me, but Angela Carter is one of my all-time favourite storytellers and I wrote my dissertation about fairytales so it’s just the cover on this one putting me off!

9. Cornelia Street– A book or series you never want(ed) to end

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline – that book skyrocketed to God tier on my favourites shelf that I could have lived in it forever – it was recently announced that the sequel is being released later this year and I am SUPER excited!

10. Death By A Thousand Cuts– A book or series that deserved a better ending

Evermore by Sara Holland – the first novel blew me away but I didn’t feel that the sequel lived up to its predecessor which was gutting.

11. London Boy– Your fave British male protagonist

So without drifting back into HP territory I’d probably have to say Cormoran Strike or James Bond – keeping my head up in the fantasy crowds I don’t tend to read many stories with solidly British characters anymore. 

12. Soon You’ll Get Better– A book that your heart will never recover from

I’m such a baby and always seem to cry sad stories or at ‘ends of things’ – be it a book series, tv show, people saying goodbye – even the end of term sometimes gets me (I have no idea why?!).
In that respect I could easily pick any of the following:

One Day by David Nicholls
Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J Maas
Kingdom of Ash by Sarah J Maas

13. False God– A character you would leap into the burning pits of hell to save

Snape again… he needs a proper redemption in my head! 

14. You Need To Calm Down– A book with a powerful message

Lord of the Rings by Tolkien for its fellowship and finding inner strength to overcome barriers for the greater good.

The Rain Heron by Robbie Arnott for its message about the importance of looking after our natural world and not taking excessively from it or destroying it for personal greed/power.

15. Afterglow – A book you want to give a second chance

Thorn by Intisar Khanani – it’s been sat on my ‘currently reading pile’ since about March?!

16. ME! – Best character development

Don Tilman in The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion – such a brilliantly written character.

17. It’s Nice To Have A Friend – Fave friends-to-lovers story

One Day by David Nicholls or The Flat Share by Beth O’Leary

18. Daylight – If you could only read one book or series again and again, what would it be?

I’m the person whose holiday carry on weight is mostly books so I couldn’t possibly pick just one.

A few faves:

The Cemetery of Forgotten Books by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
Lord of the Rings by J.R.R Tolkien
Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling
Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas


I had forgotten just how many tracks Swift puts on her albums! 😂 This seemed fairly long. Apologies if the formatting is slightly out, it’s my first time trying to get my head around this block editor and it’s frying my brain slightly!

Feel free to tag yourself if you are a fellow Swifty fan and fancy like giving this a go. Have you listened to Folklore yet? As always, drop me a comment to chat!

Have a good week everyone,
T xx