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Merethebookgal

Merethebookgal

Joined May 2016

Bookworm & Co-Host on The Eclectic Readers Podcast. Listen at: eclecticreaders.fireside.fm and check us out on Litsy at @eclecticreaders
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Merethebookgal
Jade City | Fonda Lee
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Pickpick

It‘s been a loooong time since I‘ve read an Adult Fantasy book, and boy am I out of practice! 😅 The audiobook is like 19 hours long (😫) so it took me a while to get through, but it‘s definitely an interesting story. Full of family drama, clan power struggles, political intrigue, and a fair amount of violence. If that sounds like your thing, check it out!

30 likes1 stack add
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Merethebookgal
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Here‘s a stack of ✨ possibilities ✨ for the month. I‘m currently in the middle of a couple of books, but I‘d really like to get to Addie LaRue. I also reread The Night Circus every couple of years in the autumn, but I might have to audiobook it in order to squeeze it in. (I do love Jim Dale‘s narration.) What are you hoping to read in November?

vivastory I've been meaning to read the Schwab. I'm hoping to read at least 4 books from my #nonfictionnovember TBR Otherwise it's going to be whatever strikes me 3mo
Merethebookgal @vivastory Nice! I really need to fit in more non-fiction reads 3mo
vivastory I'm typically not a big reader of nf, but several of my favorites this year are nonfiction so I'm excited 3mo
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Merethebookgal @vivastory I think I‘ve only read 2 nf this year (Somebody‘s Daughter by Ashley C Ford & The Anthropocene Reviewed by John Green) but I gave them both 5 stars! 3mo
vivastory I will definitely be moving the John Green up my TBR. You're the second person that's spoken highly of it in the past couple of weeks. 3mo
Merethebookgal @vivastory I hope you like it! I‘d recommend the audio if you‘re into audiobooks 3mo
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Merethebookgal
The Ex Hex: A Novel | Erin Sterling
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This was a fun, quick read, and of course perfect for October.

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Merethebookgal
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I‘ve gotta say, the cover and title initially drew me in, and then I found out it‘s set in Edinburgh with Zimbabwean magic and I was even more intrigued! I‘m really looking forward to starting this one! What‘s a cover that caught your attention?

JazzFeathers Oh my goodness! Staked! 3mo
Merethebookgal @JazzFeathers it sounds so good, right? I‘m only a few chapters in, but it‘s really interesting so far! 3mo
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Merethebookgal
City of Ghosts | Victoria Schwab
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Pickpick

Looking for a series to read during spooky season that‘s not TOO scary? I recommend the Cassidy Blake series! Each book takes place in a different haunted city (Edinburgh, Paris, and New Orleans) and they‘re a lot of fun!

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Merethebookgal
The Ex Hex: A Novel | Erin Sterling
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Booooks! It‘s officially spooky season, so I‘ve picked out some particularly on-theme reads, along with some book club picks. Will my brain actually cooperate and let me read all of these in October?? UNLIKELY…but a girl can dream, right?

thewallflower0707 Gorgeous display! 4mo
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Merethebookgal
Caraval | Stephanie Garber
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I had a pretty good reading month in August that was unexpectedly color coordinated 😂

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Merethebookgal
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I‘m so glad this book was chosen for my book club bc it was not on my radar & I loved it! It‘s part memoir/part nonfiction, & I listened to the audiobook, which was great. I connected w/ him an a lot of things & kept pausing to go look up certain pieces of art mentioned, or pull up Spotify & listen to a song he talked about. He wrote this during the pandemic, so that brought a whole other level of intensity to some of the chapters.

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Merethebookgal
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This is the third book in The Brown Sisters romance series by Talia Hibbert, and OF COURSE it was wonderful and charming and I loved the characters! It was just what I needed. I love these sister! This series is like a warm hug and I can definitely see myself returning to them for comfort reads. If you haven‘t read these yet, you‘re missing out! The audiobook narrator is fabulous, too.

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Merethebookgal
A Song Below Water: A Novel | Bethany C. Morrow
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Mehso-so

The concept is really cool, and I like how mythology was interwoven with timely social justice issues, but I feel like the story could have benefitted from more worldbuilding/ info on the magical beings.

Smrloomis Darn. Sorry to hear it was a bit disappointing! 10mo
DimeryRene I felt the same. Liked it but didn‘t love it. Wasn‘t mad I read it but wanted a bit more. 10mo
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Merethebookgal
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I love the whole series, and this final book was a satisfying ending.

BookwormAHN I also loved it 😻 10mo
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Merethebookgal
SLAY | Brittney Morris
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The online game created in SLAY is so cool! The descriptions of the different cards, settings, & battles were really immersive. I was able to follow along fairly well—even via audiobook, which is sometimes difficult for me when a book is description-heavy. I‘m not a gamer, but I still enjoyed the gaming aspects, & the real-world lives of the characters hit on a lot of important topics. (Also, hi, everyone! I‘m slowly coming out of a reading slump)

Bookzombie Hi! Hope your slump completely passed soon. 11mo
44 likes1 comment
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Merethebookgal
Mexican Gothic | Silvia Moreno-Garcia
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Gothic horror is not a genre I usually pick up, but the cover immediately drew me in, and I‘ve been hearing nothing but great things, so I decided to be brave and give it a try. The writing is beautifully atmospheric with amazingly detailed descriptions that become more horrifying and grotesque as you go. It starts as bit of a slow burn, but the underlying mystery kept me invested. More in comments ⬇️

Merethebookgal There were a few disturbing passages and some particularly disgusting descriptions, but if I— a huge scaredy cat— can get through it, you‘ll probably be okay, too. It‘s the perfect creepy October read. 1y
Merethebookgal The explanation of why/how everything was happening was a bit confusing, but overall I still liked it. 1y
Cathythoughts Just started this one .... nice review 👍🏻❤️ 1y
55 likes3 comments
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Merethebookgal
Ninth House | Leigh Bardugo
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I enjoyed the world of magic Bardugo created within these secret societies at Yale. It makes me want to visit the campus and take a walking tour via the book‘s map. I know people have complained about it being too long/too slow, but for the most part I was okay with the pacing. There were some flashback scenes that I found to be a bit unnecessary (or unnecessarily violent) but I‘m interested in seeing how things play out in the next book.

IndyHannaJones I may need to read this one again cause I loved it 1y
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Merethebookgal
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Long time no post! I spent the last month finishing up the first draft of my novel, which I‘m so excited about! I‘m starting on revisions in October, so I‘m hoping to read these non-fic writing books I‘ve heard great things about, as well as some spooky reads. 🎃👻

AmyG Good luck with your book! 1y
LeahBergen Congrats on that first draft! 👏🏻 1y
38 likes2 comments
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Merethebookgal
Such a Fun Age | Kiley Reid
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This book touches on performative allyship, transactional relationships, and the problems domestic workers face, along with some boy drama. It successfully interwove all of these timely and important topics into such a readable story, and I‘d highly recommend putting it on your TBR. It‘s on the Booker Prize long list, too, which is exciting!

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Merethebookgal
The City We Became | N.K. Jemisin
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I LOVED this book! I had high hopes going into it, seeing as it‘s Jemisin, and let me tell you— it did not disappoint. Is it subtle? No. But neither is NYC, so I think it works out pretty well. I thought the concept of a city having a soul and being born was so incredibly cool. It makes me want to go back and visit NYC for sure. All the stars for this one! I can‘t wait to see what Jemisin has in store for book two!

Graciouswarriorprincess I loved this book too! So good and I can't wait for book two also! 1y
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Merethebookgal
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Pickpick

This book was so much fun! It‘s a cute YA F/F romance, but it‘s more than that. Liz struggles with a friendship breakup, trying to save enough for her dream college, homophobic school policies, and family illness (which taught me a lot about sickle cell anemia). Continued in the comments ⬇️

Merethebookgal It was kinda funny having it set in 2020 seeing as this all leads up to prom, which didn‘t really end up happening for US schools this year, but let‘s just pretend this is set in an alternate universe where Covid isn‘t a thing. Sounds nice— can I visit? 😂 1y
Sharanya This book was so fun. My fave part was actually the friendships — the witty banter and the messy stuff! 1y
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Merethebookgal
The Bromance Book Club | Lyssa Kay Adams
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This was an interesting romance. It didn‘t shy away from the problems the couple was having in their marriage, and there was plenty of blame to go around. I guess I‘ve gotten to the age where people in their mid-20s who have only been married for a few years make me think “Oh, they have so much to learn” 👵🏻 😂 I loved the scenes of the Bromance Book Club meetings, & the excerpts of the Regency Romance book they were reading in the club was fun!

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Merethebookgal
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My July reads were all solid, and I‘m behind on reviews, but my favorite was YOU SHOULD SEE ME IN A CROWN. Audiobooks ruled again, as I read 5 via audio, 1 ebook, and 1 hard copy. How was your reading month?
#readingwrapup

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Merethebookgal
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Pickpick

What are some of your favorite romance tropes? I‘m a big fan of fake dating and enemies to lovers!
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This story was interesting because it went from lovers to enemies to lovers; or, really, two people who had fallen out of love falling back in love. I really enjoyed watching their relationship transform, and it was very funny in certain parts, too.

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Merethebookgal
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Definitely had this thought in my head while reading this book 😄

ValerieAndBooks Like how several American novels published in the early 2000s referenced to 9/11. 1y
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Merethebookgal
Riot Baby | Tochi Onyebuchi
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Don‘t let the small page count of this book fool you— it‘s a thought-provoking and heavy read with some gorgeous prose and startling imagery. It‘s an extremely timely read, too. The story centers around two siblings dealing with racism, police brutality, the US prison system, and rioting juxtaposed against Scifi elements that become more apparent as you read. More thoughts in comments ⬇️

Merethebookgal I must admit I didn‘t fully understand all of the story/structure, but I would definitely read an entire book set in the interesting (and terrifying) world shown in the last section of the book. 1y
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Merethebookgal
The The Last of August | Brittany Cavallaro
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Book 2 was darker than the first and that ending! 😰 I enjoyed meeting more of the Holmes and Moriarty family and having it set in Europe was cool. The stakes have definitely been set high for book three, and I‘m hoping to get to it soon!

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Merethebookgal
Royal Holiday | Jasmine Guillory
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Guillory does it again! I really enjoyed this story, and it was nice change to see characters in their 50s falling for each other. The postcards 😭 so sweet! And it was fun to have most of the book set in England.

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Merethebookgal
March (Trilogy Slipcase Set) | Andrew Aydin, John Lewis
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“Do not get lost in a sea of despair. Be hopeful, be optimistic. Our struggle is not the struggle of a day, a week, a month, or a year, it is the struggle of a lifetime. Never, ever be afraid to make some noise and get in good trouble, necessary trouble.”

The world lost a great person today. Congressman Lewis did so much for the U.S. & I‘m so sad he‘s gone. If you haven‘t read his graphic novel memoir series MARCH, get a copy; it‘s a must-read

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Merethebookgal
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I finally got around to looking over the books I read during the first 6 months of the year, and it was interesting to see the breakdown. One of my bookish resolutions was to read more non-white authors, and I‘d say I‘m doing pretty well. The 5 POC authors are female, and the Black authors are a mixture of male and female, so I‘m still reading a whole lot of white female authors. If you decide to do this, too, use the hashtag #audityourshelves

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Merethebookgal
Black Wings Beating | Alex London
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The world building in Black Wings Beating was super interesting, and I think I was able to enjoy it more because of another book I read a couple of years ago (called H is for Hawk) in which I learned a lot about falconry and caring for falcons. If I didn‘t have that foundational knowledge, all of the falconry talk in this book may have been a bit confusing. I could be wrong, but I still think it improved my appreciation of the story & the world⬇️

Merethebookgal I won‘t lie, one of the main characters was particularly annoying, but I‘m definitely interested in continuing the series to find out what happens next. 2y
jmtrivera @Merethebookgal The falconry actually wasn't off-putting to me, but the characters sure as heck were! 2y
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Merethebookgal
The Wedding Party | Jasmine Guillory
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I loved that this book started with a scene from Guillory‘s first book THE WEDDING DATE and we got to see the night unfold from two different POVs! It also really tied together nicely with the first two books, and I‘m glad we got more of Alexa and the wedding planning. The storyline of Maddie and Theo‘s relationship was fine, but Alexa‘s probably my favorite character of the series, so I was more interested in that aspect of the story.

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Merethebookgal
Clap When You Land | Elizabeth Acevedo
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Oof, what a beautiful and heart-wrenching story of grief, loss, betrayal, love, and family. Acevedo has such a way with words. I don‘t want to say too much, because I think it‘s better going in without knowing much, but it is written in verse from two POVs: Camino in the Dominican Republic, and Yahaira in the United States. Definitely add this to your TBR! (Also, I guarantee the audiobook is amazing since it‘s narrated by Acevedo)

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Merethebookgal
Riot Baby | Tochi Onyebuchi
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I‘m hoping to read these books in July, along with a bunch of audiobooks I currently have out from the library (The Last of August, Royal Holiday, You Deserve Each Other, The Bromance Book Club) and of course I have the next Eclectic Readers book (The Forest of Enchantments) which I really need to start reading if I have any chance of finishing it before our meeting...😅 What are you looking forward to reading this month?
#tbr

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Merethebookgal
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I read 10 books in June, which is pretty unheard of for me as I usually read 6, so yay! More books! I‘m behind on reviews, but I will say I enjoyed everything I read.

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Merethebookgal
War Girls | Tochi Onyebuchi
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Did I buy all of these books in June? Yes. Did I buy more books that haven‘t been delivered yet? Also, yes. Do I regret this decision? NOPE. I‘m super excited for all of these books!!! See any favorites? Or any on your TBR?
#bookhaul #tbr #tbrtuesday

JillsBookshelf Let Me Hear A Rhyme is up there on my TBR as well. I‘ll definitely read it in July. I hope you enjoy it! ❤️ 👍 2y
LeslieO I live by the adage that buying books and reading books are two separate pleasures! 2y
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Merethebookgal
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My afternoon plans 📚 I feel like the #eclecticreadathon always flies by, but I‘ve gotten in 3.5 hours so far and I‘m out on my balcony now hoping to pretty much spend the rest of the day out here reading. It‘s in the upper 80s but my balcony is shady so it feels amazing 😎 Hopefully thunderstorms will stay away!
#readathon #eclecticreaders

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Merethebookgal
Clap When You Land | Elizabeth Acevedo
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First book for the #EclecticReadathon!

EclecticReaders So pretty! 2y
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Merethebookgal
Clap When You Land | Elizabeth Acevedo
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Here‘s my TBR for the #eclecticreadathon with the @EclecticReaders ! Three books I‘m extremely excited to read, and *maybe* I‘ll be able to get them done in that time? GOOD TALK is a graphic novel memoir, CLAP WHEN YOU LAND is written in verse, and RIOT BABY is a little under 200 pages, so even for a slow reader like me, I think I have a pretty good chance!

EclecticReaders Good luck! So excited! 2y
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Merethebookgal
The Proposal | Jasmine Guillory
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Another awesome book by Jasmine Guillory! I really enjoy how she fleshes out the characters so the story is more than just the romance. I‘m enjoying these so much I‘ve already started book 3! I also have some exciting news I‘m hoping to share soon pertaining to @EclecticReaders and this series 👀 💖 stay tuned!

ChasingOm I love these books as well. The fifth (?) just came out on Tuesday! 2y
Merethebookgal @ChasingOm Yup! I‘ve heard it‘s just as great as the rest (though that‘s not surprising) 2y
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Merethebookgal
Readathon: Occasional List : Geleentheidslys | Gauteng (South Africa). Education Media Service
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Tomorrow night starts the next #eclecticreadathon over at @EclecticReaders and I‘ve got my TBR all planned out! 📚 We‘re also giving away some gift certificates to an awesome Black-owned bookstore called Mahogany Books for the most time read and the most scavenger points earned. Click here: eclecticreaders.fireside.fm/eclecticreadathon for more info and rules! Are you going to join us?
#readathon #eclecticreaders

ChasingOm Mahogany Books is a great store! The owners are awesome. 2y
Merethebookgal @ChasingOm Yes! I haven‘t made there in person yet, but post-pandemic I‘m looking forward to checking out their shop! 2y
25 likes2 comments
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Merethebookgal
Readathon: Occasional List : Geleentheidslys | Gauteng (South Africa). Education Media Service
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Tomorrow night starts the next #eclecticreadathon over at @EclecticReaders and I‘ve got my TBR all planned out! 📚 We‘re also giving away some gift certificates to an awesome Black-owned bookstore called Mahogany Books for the most time read and the most scavenger points earned. Click here: eclecticreaders.fireside.fm/eclecticreadathon for more info and rules! Are you going to join us?
#readathon #eclecticreaders

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Merethebookgal
Juneteenth: Freedom Day | Muriel Miller Branch
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I‘ve got to admit, I‘d only heard of Juneteenth in the past couple of years. To celebrate tonight I‘m watching some of the Juneteenth Book Fest talks https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCu--Ur5D1oWHD3JOM9rODxw listening to my current audiobook, (Jasmine Guillory‘s THE PROPOSAL), and starting STAMPED. I‘m hoping to get to CLAP WHEN YOU LAND and RIOT BABY during the Eclectic Readathon next week.
#juneteenth

erzascarletbookgasm Love this pic! 2y
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Merethebookgal
Readathon: Occasional List : Geleentheidslys | Gauteng (South Africa). Education Media Service
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Looking for an excuse to get a bunch of reading done? Join us over at @eclecticreaders next Friday thru Saturday June 26-27 for the #EclecticReadathon! We‘ll have games and prizes, too! More info at eclecticreaders.fireside.fm/eclecticreadathon and help spread the word by sharing this image on your page!

annahenke How fun! 2y
Merethebookgal @annahenke We do have fun with it! Hope you can participate! 2y
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Merethebookgal
The Wedding Date | Jasmine Guillory
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Pickpick

A fun romance! I liked that Alexa was successful & confident when it came to her job, but still had familiar insecurities when it came to her body. I also liked how the story didn‘t shy away from race (Alexa‘s Black & Drew‘s White) & she talks to him about his privilege & how things are different for her & especially for the kids she‘s trying to help w/ her project at the mayor‘s office for at-risk teens. The ending left me saying “Aww!”

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Merethebookgal
A Song Below Water: A Novel | Bethany C. Morrow
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Isn‘t this cover gorgeous?!? 😍 I got to listen in on a chat with the book‘s author last night, and it made me even more excited to read the book. A Contemporary Fantasy with Black Sirens set in an alternate Portland with cool mythology and deals with social justice? Sign me up!

ju.ca.no Love the cover😍 2y
Aswenson Just added this to my purchase list for my school‘s HS library. Looks amazing! 2y
Merethebookgal @ju.ca.no it really is an amazing cover! 2y
Merethebookgal @Aswenson Yay!!! I hope your students love it! 2y
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Merethebookgal
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Y‘all, go buy this book. RIGHT NOW! GO! 😂 Also, please do yourself a favor and get the audiobook. This is a memoir-in-essays by R. Eric Thomas; many of which deal with his identities of being Black, Christian, Gay, and American. It‘s thoughtful and SO FUNNY! He writes a humor column for Elle and hosts for The Moth, so his timing, his asides, and his inflections are fantastic— especially in the audiobook since he‘s the narrator.

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Merethebookgal
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A friend on IG was auditing their bookshelf to see how many books by Black authors they own, so I did it, too. The spines facing forward are those by Black authors. (Not all of them in photo) Here‘s my breakdown: (Type/Total/Total by Black Authors)
Hard copy/294/22. Ebook/114/12. Audiobook/55/9.
Total: 43 out of 463 (about 9.5%). I definitely have room to improve. What about you? If you want to participate, use #audityourshelves in the post!

Cortg This is REALLY interesting! 2y
Christine @Cortg Agreed. 2y
Soubhiville That is an interesting experiment. I‘m really interested in trying, but I‘m not sure I have the energy to rework my shelves to this degree! Maybe I‘ll just do a count. 2y
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charl08 Wow. Makes for a powerful image. I've just filled two new bookcases, so might wait until the end of the week when I've had a chance to recover. 2y
Julsmarshall Wow! What a powerful way to walk the walk and see how diverse your reading really is. Thank you for suggesting this, I will at least do a count of where my shelves stand. I do read quite a few ebooks too, wondering if I should try to include them too? 2y
Merethebookgal @Cortg @christine it was definitely eye-opening as I thought I‘d have a higher percentage written by Black authors 2y
Merethebookgal @Soubhiville A count is good, too! It‘s interesting to really look at the numbers 2y
Merethebookgal @Julsmarshall I‘m glad to hear! I think it‘s worth going through your ebooks and taking a tally to get a better overall picture. Since I check a lot of ebooks and audiobooks from the library, I‘m planning to do a count in July to see what books I‘ve actually read during the first half of the year. 2y
59 likes8 comments
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Merethebookgal
BOOKSHOPS | Jorge Carrion
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This looks cool! The box is a 3-month limited book subscription for allies (and those who seek to be allies). Each box comes with two books, curated resources, and suggested action steps. Your subscription also includes access to an online learning collaborative to further your racial education. And the shop is Black woman-owned! https://www.fultonstreet918.com/new-products/ally-box

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Merethebookgal
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📖 May Wrap-Up 📖
May was a solid reading month. I liked everything I read, but I don‘t know if I had any stand-out reads. Of these, I read 1 hard copy, 1 ebook, and 4 audiobooks.

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Merethebookgal
Tweet Cute | Emma Lord
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Reminiscent of You‘ve Got Mail— Pepper‘s parents own a franchised burger place & they get into a Twitter feud over a sandwich recipe w/ Jack & his family who own a neighborhood deli. Oh, & they‘re also classmates & have unknowingly formed a budding relationship on an anonymous chat app. There‘s actually a lot of layers to the story dealing with their families, what they really want to do with their lives, etc, so it‘s more than just a fluffy read.

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Merethebookgal
A Study in Charlotte | Brittany Cavallaro
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I enjoyed this different take on Sherlock! In this book‘s universe, Sherlock and Watson were real, historical figures, and the story follows their descendants (like 4th generation grandchildren) Charlotte Holmes & Jamie Watson when they meet at a high school boarding school in Connecticut. I enjoyed the gender-swapped Holmes and the fact that it didn‘t shy away from being a bit dark (drug use, violence, language) which made it feel more realistic.

Linsy Pretty pic!! 💕 2y
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Merethebookgal
Yes No Maybe So | Becky Albertalli, Aisha Saeed
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A cute and timely YA contemporary following two teenagers canvassing for a democratic special election in Georgia. I enjoyed the cultural and religious aspects that were touched on— we see Jamie getting ready for his little sister‘s Bat mitzvah and Maya fasting and celebrating Eid during Ramadan— as well as the politics, but could have done without the romantic element. (Posted on my Goodreads a while ago and forgot to post it here, whoops 😅)