Saturday, January 31, 2015

Book hangovers: yay or nay?

Hey guys so I've decided to try to post a discussion post at least once a month, because I didn't want the blog to just feature reviews. Here goes my first attempt at writing a discussion post.


Unless you haven't noticed, I fall victim to book hangovers quite easily. What- you must think- is it?

Here's a picture to help your comprehension of this bookish phenomenon.

To us book reviewers, book hangovers are the ultimate enemy.


It's because it leads to reading slumps. Reading slumps mean we don't read for a long period of time. No reading, just living in that last book you read and pondering the what-ifs and could'ves.

This is dangerous for us (especially bloggers) since we all have a huge TBR pile waiting to be read, and at any moment it's going to topple over and crush us to death. (No, I'm seriously not kidding here. IT CAN BE FATAL)

I won't be at all surprised if a newspaper headline reads:

I have a personal experience to share regarding book hangovers. This particular book featured faeries (if you're wondering, it's The Girl Who Never Was by Skylar Dorset)- you should read my review for it- and I was so lost in this book that I could no longer differentiate between reality and fiction.

I finished this book when I was in bed, after I woke up. A piece of advice should be dispensed here: don't finish a book IN THE MORNING. Never, ever do that. I remember walking around like a zombie the whole day, just not thinking and thinking all at once.
Basically I was thinking things I shouldn't have been thinking, which included kissing beautiful faerie boys and so much more *blushes*

I had developed feelings for him before I'd even realised it.

I blame it all on the author.

You have no idea what she did. She didn't just include parts where Ben (the boy) was brave and smart, she wrote parts where he was vulnerable and weak, and loving and selfless. AND WHY DID YOU HAVE TO DO THIS TO ME?!

If you read through this again, more carefully, you will realise that what I'm describing is a one-sided romantic relationship with a faerie boy.

Instead of shipping him with the main character, it was a ship with me. I AM IN THE SHIP, AND I WILL KEEP IT AFLOAT FOR AS LONG AS I LIVE. (For those of you who protest to this, try and sink this ship, but you shall fail)

Being a reviewer, meant I had to fulfill my blogging duties, with book reviews on the top of my priority list. And in order to do so, I had to read.

Do you see my dilemma here? Trust me, this is what every book reviewer has to go through every single time, unless the book wasn't that good

I tried to get into a book after that, and it was on the brink of forcing myself to read, which equated to zero reading enjoyment. 

Honestly, with book hangovers, you love that particular book (you obsess over that book), but you hate it too because it actually stops you from reading others.

The longest reading slump I've had is probably a month, but the most extreme I've seen is 6 months.

Here's a link to Nova from Out of Time's post so you can see the seriousness of her reading slump, which was 6 months.

6 MONTHS. I can read so many books in 6 months. 

I requested for personal accounts from my blogger friends, and one of them is the post up there, and I've got another one by Anna from Enchanted by YA:

"Book hangovers are the bane of any reader’s existence, and so I’ve obviously had my fair share. However I’m lucky in that they usually don’t last too long, and less than a week later I’m straight into another book. Of course that time feels like fooooreeever since I don’t go a day without picking up a book at least once. They call it an addiction, I call it awesome :D (though still an addiction). I remember a bad hangover/slump after finishing Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan when I’d immersed myself in the world of Percy Jackson for a month straight, and realising it was all over… that was a blow to the heart (particularly since there were no Percy chapters *deep breath* but I’ve let that go now *screams into pillow*). They tend to happen whether I liked the ending or not. For example I loved the ending to Thunderlight (The Dragonian Series #2) by Adrienne Woods but that didn’t stop me full on crying in my English exam (you wouldn’t believe the looks I got including real concern from the teacher thinking the stress was too much!) as well as refusing to so much as look at another book. But I persist on reading and eventually move on to a new, exciting book where the cycle starts again."

Finally, Booknut 101 from 21st Century Once Upon A Time has last say about her experience with book hangovers (which is quite precise) and even her cure for them: 

Book Hangovers. These normally involve much weeping, moping and intensive ice-cream therapy. Whether it's a bittersweet book hangover (finishing a good series) or a tragic one (a.k.a cliffhangers and character deaths) you're going through, it's a tough time either way. 

I think the worse book hangover I ever had was when I finished the His Dark Materials series by Philip Pullman. True, I'd had book hangovers before, but this one was brutal. Due to the series' less than satisfying ending (and the painful knowledge that there was not going to be any more books) I found it hard to stop thinking about the story...and to stop crying! The characters had seemed so real that their pain, in turn, felt real. Their pain became my pain. I kept going over the ending again and again in my mind, twisting it and editing it, trying to make up my own 'happily ever after' in my head to ease the book hangover ache.

Is there a cure? Ice-cream and chocolate help (but, then again, don't they always?!). But if you're looking for healthier options, I highly suggest music. Make a playlist for the series/book. Listen to it in your spare time. Or, if you're still feeling blue, go look up some fanfiction. Odds are some other bookworm has created an alternative ending to your series that will bring a smile to your face! 

Book hangovers will always be a hazard of reading, because books and their characters live on in the hearts and minds of the reader long after they've read the final page. It's the mark of a good book and a good author.

The gist you get from my discussion about book hangovers is bad, right?

You must be thinking, the only thing book hangovers will ever be is bad.


I have seen people work well with book hangovers. They don't actually like being in a book hangover, but while they're having one they use it to their advantage.

Enter: fan-art, fan-fiction (especially that), edits, songs, and full marks on quizzes about that book or series.

I personally don't do any of these, because I don't really have a creative bone anywhere in my body. The only thing I do is write reviews for the book- it's pretty much the most I can do. 

Think of it this way. If we had a book hangover because of a book, it's valuable proof that the book is good.

Book hangovers will always exist as long as we keep reading, so while I rant and rave about the unfairness of it, I have accepted that it is a part of living a bookish life. 

I literally do nothing to deal with book hangovers. Not even Booknut's suggestions- ice cream or chocolate. I basically just sit in a corner and cry with all the accumulated emotion from reading the book.

What about you? How do you deal with book hangovers? How bad are they? And do you agree that they can be good as well as bad?

Friday, January 30, 2015

TGIF- Feature & Follow Friday

FEATURE & FOLLOW FRIDAY is a blog hop that is designed to provide as much exposure towards other bloggers as well as yourself, and to expand following. It's hosted by Parajunkee and Alison Can Read, each whom feature a chosen blog for a week, it's also an interesting way to get to know one another bloggers.

Question of the Week:
Hard print (real thing) or Kindle/Nook, which is your favourite?

My answer: Hard print, of course!! It's so straining to the eyes when you read ebooks. That's why I had to get glasses :(

What about you? Feel free to comment below!! Also, if you're a new follower, please say so so I can visit your blog!

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday: Dating Down by Stefanie Lyons

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine, that highlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pre-publication 'can't-wait-to-read' selection is:

Title: Dating Down
Author: Stefanie Lyons
Release Date: 8th April 2015
Publisher: Flux
Find on: Goodreads

When a good girl falls for a bad boy

She thought she loved him. She thought she could change him. She thought if she just believed in him enough, his cheating and his drugs and his lying would stop, and she'd be his and he'd be hers and they'd love each other forever.

But for Samantha Henderson, X-the boy she will not name-is trouble. He's older, edgier, bohemian . . . and when he starts paying attention to Sam, she can't resist him. Samantha's family and friends try to warn her, but still she stays with him, risking her future and everything that really matters.

As moody and vivid as it is captivating, Dating Down is told in scenes and bursts of poetry that create a story filled with hurt, healing, and hope.

It was the cover that got me (it's ALWAYS the cover- but I don't want to be like Chloe). Another reason why I want to read it is the bittersweet romance hinted in the synopsis, and how can you possibly resist that? The promise of hot guys and swoon-worthy moments will definitely make a girl weak in the knees. Add some intriguing words and phrases like 'poetry', 'a story filled with hurt, healing and hope', and you've got my full attention.

Monday, January 26, 2015

ARC Review: Every Ugly Word by Aimee L. Salter

Title: Every Ugly Word
Author: Aimee L. Salter
Release Date: 29th July 2014
Publisher: Alloy Entertainment
Find on: Goodreads

Quick Review: When seventeen-year-old Ashley Watson walks through the halls of her high school bullies taunt and shove her. She can’t go a day without fighting with her mother. And no matter how hard she tries, she can’t make her best friend, Matt, fall in love with her. But Ashley also has something no one else does: a literal glimpse into the future. When Ashley looks into the mirror, she can see her twenty-three-year-old self.

Her older self has been through it all already—she endured the bullying, survived the heartbreak, and heard every ugly word her classmates threw at her. But her older self is also keeping a dark secret: Something terrible is about to happen to Ashley. Something that will change her life forever. Something even her older self is powerless to stop.

Detailed Review: I received a copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for my honest feedback.

A review was long due for this book, but I found myself in a reviewing slump (and blogging slump) that's lasted for months.

So I'm going to start off the new year with a positive review, which I hope will give way to more positive things in the future.

  *drum roll and blaring trumpets*

My initial reaction after reading this book was just


This is why: main character= younger Ashley= older Ashley

Yes, I can imagine your eyes popping out of your head as you struggle to make some sense of this.

The thing is, with EUW, you don't. You just have to keep reading and trust the author to give you the answers. And even if you don't get said answers, you still find the story just as good.

The most appealing factor in this book is not the cover, nor the story itself, or even the characters; it's the way Salter managed to portray bullying in such a way that it makes you the victim. I could literally feel Ashley's fear and apprehension like my own when you read the parts where she gets bullied.

I'm personally really proud of the author for bringing up this issue in her book and for highlighting the effects on its victims. I understood Ashley's suffering and struggles because I, was once a victim of bullying. 

This book was an eye-opener for me as from experience, I thought that there was merely name-calling and physical force involved. EUW taught me that it was so much more than that. It could be the destruction of one's hopes and dreams and possibly even to the point of losing the people they love, as was the case with Matt for Ashley.

Another point awarded for the author goes to the fact that Salter decided to include an older Ashley to help out her younger counterpart. I decided metaphorically that it was her way of saying that the victim always needs someone, especially someone with experience to help them survive the ordeals they were put through.

Character development in this book was also a key element because I believe a person's attitude changes due to bullying. I 'witnessed' Ashley's transformation as she went through different degrees of bullying, that would have made me want to kill myself. Instead of doing what I would have opted to do, she stayed strong and I admire her so much for that. I feel like she could be my role model.

That sounds cool, actually. Having a fictional character as your role model. That could work.

Regarding the ways Ashley was bullied, I am speechless. I cannot find the words to describe what Ashley had to go through and I would let you experience it from her eyes should you choose to pick up this book- which I suggest you should (must).

The ending was both touching and perfect. One person dies (you'll never guess who- and it is not a spoiler). I actually thought it was the right way to end it because it added much-needed depth and character development to the book. Again, the author decided to give Ashley's story a happy ending because I felt that she wanted to tell us that it is possible to survive bullying.

*cries puddles of tears*

When the book ended, I was overcome with so much emotion (including being mindblown- how could you not?) because it was too relatable to my experience as a bully victim.

*more tears*

Brief Review: No amount of words can describe what Every Ugly Word was. It wasn't just a story of a person's life; it could be so many other people's. This book is one of the very few that describes the true side of bullying and the havoc it wreaks on people's lives and I admire the author for approaching this topic in her debut- in other words, for being brave. Bullying is hard to write about, since it is especially hard to capture the emotions involved, as is the case for mental illnesses. But Salter? She did it.

Final Rating: 5/5 'Totally Amazing!'

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