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LittlebearReads

LittlebearReads

Joined January 2021

Lover of all things literary | Guinea pig enthusiast | Sometimes poet, always escapist | MLIS, KSU ‘20
review
LittlebearReads
Ruin and Rising | Leigh Bardugo
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Pickpick

All the ⭐️‘s and then some! It took me a long time to recover from the absolute trauma-fest of “Siege and Storm,” but I‘m so glad I decided to return to the final outing of this trilogy! The whole thing is beautiful in its inherent bitterness and the ending line is simply perfection. Now…will it take me another year to begin “Six of Crows?!” Saints only know 😉

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LittlebearReads
Ruin and Rising | Leigh Bardugo
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Pure heartbreak from good ol‘ Leigh.

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LittlebearReads
Ruin and Rising | Leigh Bardugo

I have politely warned my esteemed, exceedingly tolerant, spouse that I am embarking on the follow-up to the book that made me cry so hard it woke them up from 3 rooms away.

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LittlebearReads
The Rules of Magic | Alice Hoffman
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This was such an interesting exploration of how Franny and Jet came to be the Aunts we know in “Practical Magic.” Heartbreaking at every turn, yet still sweet and life-affirming. The inclusion of Dickenson‘s quote “unable are the loved to die, for love is immortality” feels especially poignant.

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LittlebearReads
Number the Stars | Lois Lowry
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Pickpick

Despite being written by Lois Lowry, an American, “Number the Stars” does a near-perfect job of capturing Danish attitudes during WWII at least I (a very Danish person at heart) think so. While it‘s certainly not action-packed, it is a great lil‘ tale of bravery and just plain human decency, and I‘d recommend it far and wide!

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LittlebearReads
The Stardust Thief | Chelsea Abdullah
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Pickpick

This was alright. Not quite the page-turner I was hoping it would be, and eventually the “but wait…there‘s more!” aspects of the plot became a little tiresome. I did enjoy the characters, though, and will be interested to see whether more of Aisha‘s background is revealed in the sequel.

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LittlebearReads
The Hacienda | Isabel Caas
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Pickpick

This was pretty much everything I wanted “Mexican Gothic” to be—dark, spooky, but not gratuitously gross/graphic. The inclusion of the Casta system and how it impacts Beatriz is also done very well, and Andres as a whole is a great character. My only qualm is that I would have liked more clarity regarding why the house chooses to focus on Beatriz given its ability to reach Juana in some of those same moments.

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LittlebearReads
Gallant | V.E. Schwab
Mehso-so

The interplay between image and word was really interesting, but I ultimately felt like the plot was a bit thin and would have liked a deeper exploration of qhy Olivia‘s family were chosen (cursed?). I think I‘m finding that V.E. Schwab generally does not solidif the rules of their worlds enough for me to really enjoy their works (see also my review of Addie LaRue)

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LittlebearReads
Gallant | V.E. Schwab
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Thanks to V.E. Schwab for getting me back into reading with my two new buddies! I really needed a good book after a pretty awful month where we lost not only two humans but also a furry family member.

BookwormM Ahh little piggies 3mo
2 likes1 comment
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LittlebearReads
The Cartographers | Peng Shepherd
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⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ This was such a cool premise, and the way Shepherd plays with the redrawing of the lines of reality spoke to me a lot. I also enjoyed Nell, who is fairly relatable to me as a tiny, kind of quiet, librarian-lady but also someone who knows when to stand their ground. The final two pages are so good they gave me actual chills, and my only complaint is I want more Bear (the literal best side-character I‘ve read in years)!

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LittlebearReads
A River Enchanted | Rebecca Ross
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This was so good and I‘m already excited for the 2nd one! I especially loved how the big twist wasn‘t something I foresaw and how the folk/magic were rooted in lore without feeling tired. I do hope they‘ll sing for fire in the sequel, though, being ever the completionist.

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LittlebearReads
Mooncakes | Suzanne Walker
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Sorry I‘ve been MIA for so long, friends—buying a house is CRAZY! But! This lil‘ graphic novel is so adorable, and the art is so neat (especially Tam‘s features are really carefully thought out) I absolutely had to make sure to recommend it. I especially enjoyed how the characters are diverse, but not as a plot-driver, and how seamlessly Nova‘s hearing loss is integrated into her magic.

GondorGirl I loved this one! 🥰 7mo
5 likes1 comment
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LittlebearReads
Budgie, the Little Helicopter | Sarah (Duchess of York)
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If you know, you know.

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LittlebearReads
No Title | None
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83 books in 354 days…that‘ll do pig, that‘ll do.

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LittlebearReads
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Went to B&N for “Everyone Knows…,” saw the “50% off all hardcovers” sign, and was immediately overcome by the urge to spend all my holiday cash like a tiny book goblin. It‘s the little things in life.

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LittlebearReads
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Pickpick

This was so stinkin‘ cute, and I loved how—at least for a book where social media features so heavily—the drama wasn‘t overwhelming! I was concerned at the beginning though, that I might‘ve picked a book so hilarious it was functionally unreadable (who else cries when laughing real hard?!). Overall a 10/10 entry into the “we only read jolly YA(ish, at the least) for the holidays” mission.

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LittlebearReads
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I‘m really loving this little Helen Keller I came across in Lightfall today

ozma.of.oz That‘s lovely. 💕 10mo
3 likes1 comment
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LittlebearReads
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Pickpick

I‘m not that keen on Peter Pan retellings, but this one‘s by Aiden Thomas so I HAD to read it! And I‘m so glad I did! This is a mostly fresh take on Peter Pan, but more importantly Wendy Darling, and the twist is virtually unforeseeable (great for mystery fans).

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LittlebearReads
Stepping Stones | Lucy Knisley
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This one‘s a super quick, super cute read (for kids and adults alike)! There are definitely things that aren‘t perfect about it, like Walter‘s behavior and how it never really changes, but I think that‘s alright in a semi-autobiographical piece. The illustrations are also great, and the color palette is lovely.

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LittlebearReads
The Eerie Book | Margaret Armour
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Spooky reads roundup review‼️
THE EERIE BOOK: ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Pretty cool; somewhat archaic. THE EX HEX: 🧙‍♀️🧙‍♀️🧙‍♀️🧙‍♀️ Hilarious; not spooky.
HERE THERE ARE MONSTERS: 🤢 Nah, just nah. What a dumb twist. THE SOUTHERN BOOK CLUB‘S GUIDE TO SLAYING VAMPIRES: ⭐️⭐️ it‘s fiiiine…but so gross, and the sexual assault is just unnecessary. UNDER THE WHISPERING DOOR: 🫖🫖🫖🫖🫖 Yes! Read it! It‘s only the tiniest bit spooky, but gorgeous!

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LittlebearReads
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To be fair, who doesn‘t smile with their human mouth when watching sloth videos?

smalldogs_bigbooks2419 What does DD stand for in this book? 12mo
LittlebearReads @smalldogs_bigbooks2419 This is like a little addendum to the actual book, where DD stands for “Dearly Departed.” 12mo
6 likes2 comments
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LittlebearReads
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It‘s here! It‘s here! It‘s finally here!! After having read “Cerulean Sea,” this is easily my most anticipated new book of 2021, and I may have cried some happy little tears when the mailman dropped it off.

GondorGirl I planned my reading around when my copy was supposed to be delivered. So far I'm loving it! 12mo
LittlebearReads @GondorGirl I‘ve only read the first chapter, but I‘m already convinced it‘ll be great! 12mo
7 likes2 comments
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LittlebearReads
A Man Called Ove: A Novel | Fredrik Backman
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I know I‘m late to the Backman party, but I sure am glad I‘m here now! “A Man Called Ove” was really sweet, and pretty much what I expected in terms of tone (based on “Anxious People”). I also found a lot of the cultural idosyncracies pretty relatable to me—an originally Danish person—but I could see how some aspects would read less funnily to non-Scandinavian folks.

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LittlebearReads
Fangirl: A Novel | Rainbow Rowell
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Pickpick

This was fantastic! Cath is so sweet, but not always soft, and—at least for me—her semi-recluse first semester of college is super easy to relate to. I also felt grateful that Rowell chose not to go a pathway of tearful family reunions, but still found ways to create emotion and interest for the entire book. In short: READ THIS ONE!

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LittlebearReads
The Love Hypothesis | Ali Hazelwood
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I‘m not the biggest romance reader, but this was quite fun and kept me going. I liked how the MC was self-aware of all the fake-dating tropes she engaged in, and how the author portrayed women in science generally. I didn‘t love the one chapter Tothat suddenly felt like erotica, but alas, the rest of the book made up for it tenfold.

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LittlebearReads
I Am Still Alive | Kate Alice Marshall
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🎉55th book of the year = reading goal met!🎉 This was a neat little survival story, with some thriller undertones, and a pretty quick read. The protagonist, Jess, garners sympathy from the beginning, and kept me invested even though the initial pace was a bit slow.

3 likes1 stack add
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LittlebearReads
Pickpick

This was so cute, and a great, quick read! I liked the characters, and the humor was a great through line. I also thought the idea of having at least one chapter for each of the previous trips was cool, and worked way better than it would‘ve if they‘d just been casually mentioned in the present. The one thing I didn‘t love was the ever-present focus on Alex‘s physique, which I felt really tired of about halfway through (he‘s hot, we get it!).

terryduncan5719 I enjoyed it as well. I agree, some of the descriptions were redundant. 13mo
6 likes1 stack add1 comment
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LittlebearReads
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“Whatcha readin‘, mom?!” - Webster

BookwormM Ahhh Webster what a cutie 🥰 13mo
8 likes1 comment
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LittlebearReads
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Hopefully this‘ll be the perfect read for my long weekend between my old job and my new youth services adventure!

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LittlebearReads
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LittlebearReads
The Burning Girls | C. J. Tudor
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🎉My 50th non-electronic book of the year! 🎉 “The Burning Girls” is definitely a good one for readers like me who enjoy supernatural stuff as well as mysteries, but I couldn‘t help but feel like the twist regarding Jack was a little bit too easy—even given the pretty clever misdirections employed by the Author. The other twist was fantastic, though, and I definitely didn‘t see it coming!

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LittlebearReads
Siege and Storm | Leigh Bardugo
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⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
I loved “Shadow and Bone,” so I had high hopes—and I was not disappointed! Bardugo allows her universe to become significantly darker than in the first book, introduces a whole new, fantastic, crew of characters, and ends with a real tearjerker. If you didn‘t like the first book, this probably also won‘t be for you, but I found it thrilling from beginning to end.

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LittlebearReads
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Mehso-so

This gets two stars exclusively for how interesting the concept is—history retold through a lens of magic, what‘s not to love?! Well, as it turns out: a lot. So much of the first 300 pages is just politicians talking, and the most interesting character—who is also the only woman that really gets any sort of voice—has the least space by far. I also find the (implicit) whitewashing of the slave rebellion problematic.

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LittlebearReads
One Last Stop | Casey McQuiston
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When you win a gift card from the Summer Reading program, what else is there to spend it on but another book?

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LittlebearReads
We Are the Brennans | Tracey Lange
Panpan

This one‘s not worth the time, folks. The softcore victim-blaming (and how it‘s never really challenged) is pretty unforgivable , especially given that the author is female. Additionally, the story just wasn‘t wildly compelling to me and I don‘t think the differing perspectives were really necessary since they were all basically the same voice.

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LittlebearReads
Horrorstor: A Novel | Grady Hendrix
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With my newest purchase, I think I can confidently say that “my bookbin doth overfloweth.”

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LittlebearReads
Her Body and Other Parties | Carmen Maria Machado
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I really enjoyed most of these short stories—“The Husband Stitch” and “Difficult at Parties” in particular—but I thought “Especially Heinous” was significantly too long. I also kept going back to this collection-opening quote, and felt like the helplessness within colored my reading more than Machado likely intended. Overall I‘d say this is a fairly interesting read, but probably a bit too interested in being “cerebral” for the sake thereof.

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LittlebearReads
Skye Falling: A Novel | Mia McKenzie
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After a slight mail delay it‘s finally #BOTM day and I couldn‘t be more excited! Fingers crossed this one‘s as funny as it sounds! 🎉📚🥳

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LittlebearReads
No Title | None
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There‘s nothing quite like a good bookmark, is there?

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LittlebearReads
Ariadne | Jennifer Saint
Mehso-so

Given the broadly positive reviews, I was very excited for this...but it fell flat for me. I consistently felt like Ariadne didn‘t have enough agency, and then when she finally did it lasted about half a page. I also felt like her youngest child was mentioned an almost gratuitous amount, which contributed to the latter half of the book feeling quite draggy. I also felt like some parts were weirdly convoluted, yet simultaneously underexplained.

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LittlebearReads
Ariadne | Jennifer Saint
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Pretty excited about this #BOTM...although: am I the only one who doesn‘t care for the newly added plastic packaging?

The_Heeler_Booklife They didn‘t even put plastic wrap on mine. 1y
LittlebearReads @The_Heeler_Booklife That‘s so weird! This is the 2nd one I‘ve gotten wrapped like this, and my coworkers gets hers wrapped too 1y
The_Heeler_Booklife @LittlebearReads when I first started in 2017 they were always wrapped. Then a year or two they stopped. Still haven‘t gotten the wrapping. I wonder if it depends on which facility it came from? 1y
8 likes3 comments
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LittlebearReads
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Pickpick

What a gem of a book! Although there are serious themes, it seems like TJ Klune was mostly interested in writing something heartwarming and succeeded in doing so without being too trite. The twist is fairly predictable, but I didn‘t mind that because the characters were so fun to get to know. If you‘re an adult who grew up with Lemony Snicket and the likes, this is definitely for you.

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LittlebearReads
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Mehso-so

I wanted to love this, and for the first 75% I did! Addie is an interesting, morally gray character and the shifts in time worked well for me. However, I felt like the ending was almost clichéd and very rushed compared to the earlier parts of the book. Also, I didn‘t like that the book existed within the book without really being the same book, at all (other readers will know what I mean).

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LittlebearReads
What Comes After: A Novel | JoAnne Tompkins
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Mehso-so

I enjoyed this #BOTM overall, but it left a lot to be desired. I had a continual feeling that someone had told the author “you need more drama” (even though she really didn‘t), especially in the moment where the police tell Evangeline that Mr. Balch won‘t be allowed to come with her to the hospital which is then never properly explained. I also thought the entire plotline of Peter‘s infidelity was unnecessary, and not very interesting.

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LittlebearReads
Pickpick

This was a fairly easy, overall lighthearted, take on the life of The Princess Royal. While I enjoyed McHugh‘s novel, I don‘t think it would be correct to think of it as any sort of rigorous historical exploration—which also isn‘t how it was marketed so I‘m good with that—just because so much of it deals with Vicky‘s innermost thoughts and feelings. I‘d especially recommend this book to romance readers looking for something inspired by reality.

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LittlebearReads
Mexican Gothic | Silvia Moreno-Garcia
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Mehso-so

I know tons of folks love this one, and I can see why, but it was just too gross for me to adore. I thorougly enjoyed Noemi, and the gloom was such a cool concept, but I almost DNF‘ed at the point where pus-ingestion became a factor. I‘m ultimately glad I didn‘t, though, and would recommend this to anyone with a stronger stomach than mine for the interesting overall plot! It does have some strong triggers, so consider consulting doesthedogdie.com

SamAnne I loved this one and don‘t read horror as a rule (although I‘ve been delving in more with POC authors) but I loved this one. Not my usual genre. Yeah, the pus. I get that. 1y
LittlebearReads @SamAnne Yeah, if there‘d been less pus this would‘ve been a perfect read! 1y
SamAnne @LittlebearReads but oh, the mycelium!! I loved that theme, plot device. Brilliant. 1y
LittlebearReads @SamAnne I completely agree! Moreno-Garcia is a very clever writer, for sure. 1y
bookandbedandtea Those were my EXACT thoughts! It was a very good, creepy story but the gross factor was over the top. 🤢 1y
14 likes5 comments
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LittlebearReads
Clap When You Land | Elizabeth Acevedo
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I‘ve never read a whole book in such minimalist prose before, but Acevedo does a great job with it! Her writing style is evocative, and easy to follow despite the restraint in wordcount. Additionally, the story is interesting and I couldn‘t help but root for both of the main characters as they navigated their grief and other challenges.

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LittlebearReads
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Pickpick

This was a really neat book! The premise was interesting and Penner did a nice job giving voice to three different perspectives without confusion. I wouldn‘t give this book five stars, though, purely because the ending bit felt a little too cliché and interested in achieving happiness on all—even unrealistic (like casually ignoring that universities don‘t admit you instantly)—fronts.

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LittlebearReads
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Finally feeling settled into the new place now that we‘ve got some photoworthy bookshelves. Now, time to make up for lost reading in a major way!

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LittlebearReads
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It‘s #BOTM day at my house!...and as usual, I‘ve taken shameless advantage of the add-on option (sorry, wallet).