This Will Only Hurt A Little by Busy Phillips.

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Busy is the rare entertainer whose impressive arsenal of talents as an actress is equally matched by her storytelling ability, sense of humor, and sharp observations about life, love, and motherhood. Her conversational writing reminds us what we love about her on screens large and small. From film to television to Instagram, Busy delightfully showcases her wry humor and her willingness to bare it all.

Thanks to a Youtube rabbit hole I discovered Busy Phillips late night show and binged about 20 videos straight which lead to me downloading her audiobook. I didn’t go in with a lot of expectations but I enjoyed her story telling style on the show so why the heck not right? Free Audible credits have lead to me discovering some amazing memoirs and this is one of them. Busy is just so honest with her stories. It’s style reminds me a lot of Gabrielle Union’s book We’re Going To Need More Wine. Both feel like a friend telling you stories over drinks. Except with Busy its over margs instead of over wine.
If you haven’t had a child yet and are planning on having a child, maybe skip the chapter where she explains her birthing of her first child. She doesn’t hold back on any of the gruesome details of childbirth. Not a single detail… Or maybe you want to know what you’re going to get into! If that’s the case that chapter will be very informative.
Her chapters about her teens and early twenties are easily my favourite chapters. She’s honest about herself in the whole novel but I feel like her talking about being a teen discovering sex is where she’s at her most bare. But just a heads up, there is frank discussion about sexual assault and abortion so if those make you upset, I’d skip this novel.
Each chapter’s title is a song and all of them are so good. I wish someone had made a spotify playlist of the chapters songs. I may end up doing it one day, mostly because I love all the songs she chose.
If you’re looking for a funny, frank and honest memoir I can’t recommend this enough. Make yourself a drink, put on mr nightgown and cozy up with Busy. I think you’ll enjoy yourself.

4 out of 5 margs for this lovely audiobook.

Available wherever books are sold, but as always, I encourage you to buy from your local bookstore. 

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A Fierce And Subtle Poison by Samantha Mabry.

fierceEveryone knows the legends about the cursed girl–Isabel, the one the señoras whisper about. They say she has green skin and grass for hair, and she feeds on the poisonous plants that fill her family’s Caribbean island garden. Some say she can grant wishes; some say her touch can kill.

I’ll be quite honest with you, I bought this purely because of the cover. Come on, look at it! It’s gorgeous! Pair it with an avobomb from Lush and you’ve got such a lush photo! Yes I plan out my bookstagram photos, don’t judge me. But I don’t really know how I felt about this book? It is beautifully written. Samantha has a lyrical way with her words which I truly appreciate. The way she describes San Juan has further fueled my desire to visit Puerto Rico. Its just the characters… Lucas as the main character is obviously not supposed to be likable. That’s a given. Its just every other character fell flat for me as well? It’s hard to describe. I enjoyed the world of the book so much. The magical realism paired with island life is everything I want out of life for myself. I just wish the character development had been stronger. The friendships between Lucas and his friends seems so forced and disingenuous. Don’t get me started on Isabel and Lucas. Manic pixie dream girl if I ever saw one. Which normally, no problems with those in books if they’re more fleshed out. Maybe it’s because it is a stand alone novel but make it longer if you’re characters are going to fall so flat. That’s just my opinion. I’m very conflicted over this novel.  What do you rate a book where you liked everything but the characters? I’d love to see more from Samantha on this island but maybe with different characters. I’m intrigued to read more of her writing to see if her characters development gets deeper.

3.5 out of 5 very conflicted stars.

Available wherever books are sold, but as always, I encourage you to buy from your local bookstore. 

 

So You Made Reading More Your Resolution.

Welcome! You, like many people in this social media wild west have realized you don’t actually read enough. Sure you stare at a screen or two, maybe three for many hours a day but you’re not actually retaining anything from it. I get it, I really do. Instagram and Twitter are my biggest time suckers. But! They also fuel a lot of my book buying habits which leads to my actually reading a book! This is where I’ll shamlessly plug my instagram if you want to see books that I’m currently reading or bought purely because the cover was aesthetically pleasing. Oh yeah I’m that person, I will buy purely for the cover. But that is not the point of this!
If you’re looking to get back into the book reading game I’ve got some suggestions!
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Reread an old favourite!
This is a tried and true for me when I’m in a reading rut. Heading back to Hogwarts or really any book with some kind of magic does it for me. But maybe you don’t like magic! I’d think you’re weird but magic isn’t for everyone. Muggles, what can ya do…

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Graphic Novels! The adult picture books!
No I don’t actually think graphic novels are adult picture books, but I have had someone say that to me? They were very wrong. Graphic novels are a great way to read in a different way. The art is another way of story telling. Which if you haven’t read Saga yet you’re doing yourself a disservice and you should run, not walk to your local bookstore and read volume one. While you’re there I’d also recommend picking up Rat Queen’s, The Prince and The Dressmaker, Lumberjanes, The Witch Boy and Bingo Love. But maybe you don’t like comics, maybe you want another method to read more.

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Now let’s give her a listen!
I only just got on the audio book train and oh boy! I am not getting off anytime soon! Last year audio books helped me add 5 more titles to my 50 book pledge. If you don’t want to pay for a subscription like Audible you can download audio books from your local library! Having fun isn’t hard when you have a library card! <– If you get this reference we can be friends.
But if you’re looking for some titles to try might I recommend The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher! She reads most of the book but her daughter Billie reads the actual diary entries and she has such a captivating voice.
But maybe you don’t care for Carrie Fisher, you’re wrong but everyone’s allowed their own opinions. Maybe you want something that hits a little more to the current climate of the world. Might I suggest Born A Crime by Trevor Noah or We’re Going To Need More Wine by Gabrielle Union. You already know you like Trevor’s story telling style from his stand up. It shines in his novel. But Gabrielle’s book is like sitting down for drinks and stories with one of your best girlfriends.
Or maybe you want to not think about the world, maybe you just want a steamy read. Did you like Magic Mike? Of course you did, those boys can dance! But how would you like to listen to a book inspired by it? If you answered yes to these questions you need to download Stripped by Zoey Castile. Ooooh buddy the sex scenes are steamy and when they’re read by Jacob Morgan, I just honestly swoon. But maybe you want a romcom but not the audiobook…

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Who doesn’t love a meet cute?
Another thing I got into in 2018 was contemporary romance novels. I have always been a sucker for romcoms so I’m surprised it took me so long to start picking up romance novels. But they’ve quickly become my go to for an afternoon of easy reading. Especially Jasmine Guillory’s books or Alyssa Cole’s! I know their novels will be instant buys for me because the series they are currently writing are some of my favourite reads of 2018. But maybe you want some hate fucking in your romance. No judgement, enemies to lovers trope is hands down one of my favourites, might I suggest The Hating Game by Sally Thorne.  I did this one as an audio book but I had seen it all over social media when it first came out and a lot of bloggers I trust really enjoyed it. But hey maybe romance isn’t your thing, maybe you like something a little younger.

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#Noshame I love YA.
I really, really do. The fantasy in YA is always so adventurous and out there. They try new things! Not all of them stick but I’d rather read a new idea than the same story over and over and over again by old white guys. Also! YA is so diverse! Take the one above, Emergency Contact by Mary H.K Choi, even just ten years ago a love story about two Asian Americans probably wouldn’t have been published. But my dudes! The god damn FEELS  in this book. I was hiding my face in my pillow and blushing because the feelings of butterflies in your stomach is universal. If you don’t want the feels I wouldn’t recommend YA. They are all about the feels but might I make some suggestions on titles to check out if you’re intrigued: Toil And Trouble is an anthology about witches. Like I said I love me some magic and witch craft. How about some historical fiction with your magical realism? The Diviners by Libba Bray is the perfect combination of spooky and gripping. I can not wait to read the fourth one in this series. Not into historical fiction? How about some straight up fantasy? You gotta read An Ember In The Ashes by Sabaa Tahir, Sabaa will rip your heart out because she writes characters you fall in love with but she’s an evil woman who likes to torture her characters… I’ve been left with some feelings by this woman what can I say. Also! The maps in her books? Done by the same people who do the Game Of Thrones maps Yeah, THAT Game Of Thrones.

And there we go all the genres I can think of recommendations for if you’re trying to get back into the swing of reading. Did this help at all? Do you hate some of these books? Let me know! Few things in life bring me as much joy as talking about books. Well maybe naps but who doesn’t love a good nap?
Happy reading!

The Field Guide To The North American Teenager by Ben Philippe.

 

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Norris Kaplan is clever, cynical, and quite possibly too smart for his own good. A black French Canadian, he knows from watching American sitcoms that those three things don’t bode well when you are moving to Austin, Texas. Plunked into a new high school and sweating a ridiculous amount from the oppressive Texas heat, Norris finds himself cataloging everyone he meets: the Cheerleaders, the Jocks, the Loners, and even the Manic Pixie Dream Girl. Making a ton of friends has never been a priority for him, and this way he can at least amuse himself until it’s time to go back to Canada, where he belongs.

First book of 2019 that I’ve read in one sitting! I’ve been finding it more and more difficult to sit down and just read lately. It could be because of all the coffee I drink but I’d like to think its because of other things. But this book! It was the perfect distraction from a god awful polar vortex cold snap(If you don’t know what a polar vortex cold snap is consider yourself lucky, they are literally the worst). Norris is a cynical, sarcastic little bugger and I’d have him no other way. He might be a little much for others but I like my YA protagonists sarcastic af. But I may be a bit biased since I am sarcastic af. But if sarcastic characters aren’t your jam I’ll be surprised if you don’t love the other characters in the book. I personally adored Liam,  I thought it was so cute that he wanted to start up a hockey team with Norris. I personally adored all the Canadian references Ben threw in since he himself is a Canuk. He’s wrong about La Belle Province poutine though #sorrynotsorry #Deppoutine4ever. That may have been the most Canadian sentence I’ve ever typed out. But maybe you’re not a Canadian and don’t know the great debate about where to get the best poutine, I still think you’ll like this novel! It’s a wonderful, smart, sassy coming of age story. If you don’t laugh if you’re ever in my neck of the woods I’ll buy you a double double.

4.5 out of five timbits for this lovely read. 

The Field Guide To The North American Teenager is available wherever books are sold but I highly encourage you pick it up from your local bookstore! 

 

Let’s try this again.

Alright, so it’s been a hot minute since I’ve done any blogging. So since we’re starting over again fresh let me introduce myself.

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Hey look that’s me!  As you can gather from the site handle my name is Chrissie. I’m an avid reader from the capital of Canada.  That’s Ottawa for those not in the know.  I’m a former bookseller, now barista. I will not lie, I miss being a bookseller a lot but the bucks pays better. So since I miss talking about books I figured I’d get back into the book blogging game. I used to book blog almost four years ago now so it’s been a bit of a minute since I’ve done this. I read almost every genre of book. From middle grade to non fiction, I own a bit of it all. I just recently got into audio books so expect some reviews on them too. I’ll always be honest on this, so if you like reviews peppered with uh, colourful language occasionally welcome! I’ll try and keep this updated more than once a year.
Hopefully.