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i.besteph

i.besteph

Joined May 2020

Adulting is hard but books are my escape. #mischiefmanaged
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Theology of the Body in Simple Language by Pope John Paul II, Paul II John
review
i.besteph
Lady Susan | Jane Austen
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Pickpick

Something speaks about Jane Austen‘s talent and it astounds me every time, how she‘s remembered even after an entire century. This book is a testament to that.

It needed some getting used to but once I started I couldn‘t stop! This entire novel is a collection of correspondences between people. The plot becomes clear as we read these letters.
( contd in comments …⬇️)

i.besteph (….contd) The ending seemed a bit rushed and this may be my only critique for many of her works. Most of her novels that I‘ve read always seemed too rushed and ill-placed. If Austen were still alive, I‘d have written HER a letter saying, “Dear Madam, I need more TEA! Spill it for me!” 😂😂

Rating: 4/5
3w
18 likes1 comment
review
i.besteph
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Pickpick

This is a collection of short stories for all S&B fans. It‘s completely unrelated to the plot though, since it‘s a bunch of tales from the S&B world that parents would probably tell their kids as bedtime stories.
I love the author‘s creativity and her imagination. Some of them are classic fairytales that we know which she reimagined.

(Contd in comments….⬇️)

i.besteph (…contd) Like the story, ‘When Water Sang Fire‘. It‘s a villain origin story of Ursula from Little Mermaid.
My favorite was Ayama and the thorn wood.

Rating: 3.5/5
3w
StaceGhost I loved the too clever fox! And the book itself was so lovely— those margin illustrations oof 3w
i.besteph @StaceGhost I agree! The illustrations were really good 2w
14 likes3 comments
review
i.besteph
Entwined | Heather Dixon
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Pickpick

This is a reimagined story of the 12 dancing princesses. Growing up, this was my all time favorite Barbie movie so imagine my surprise when I came across this book! I had to jump right in!

Even though most reviews say it wasn‘t a favorite, I loved reading it. There were some parts that dragged a bit for my liking but I like the plot and the sisterly bonding between the princesses.
(Contd in comments ⬇️)

i.besteph (…..contd) The possible matchmaking was so cute! And the meet-cutes were such wholesome plots, it made me smile.

Rating: 4/5
3w
13 likes1 comment
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i.besteph
Pickpick

My review for this book is in good reads. Click on this link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/175113

review
i.besteph
Pickpick

My review for this book is in good reads. Click on this link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18879934

review
i.besteph
One Of Us Is Lying | Karen McManus
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Pickpick

Hands down one of the best books I‘ve read so far! The plot? Brilliant! The characters? Fantastic!
It was like I was watching pretty little liars in my head. I‘m a sucker for murder mysteries and this had me on edge at every single page.
I highly recommend it!

Rating: 4/5

review
i.besteph
Constance | Matthew Fitzsimmons
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Mehso-so

In short, this is a sci-fi loaded with all things abnormal, plus a twisted ending.

It wasn‘t my favorite but it definitely was interesting. I loved the particular futuristic developments in terms of transport and mode of communication. The ending got me! I had no idea a plot could have a plot within another plot, that it‘s almost a never ending wormhole. Kudos to the author for such creativity.

Book rating: 3/5

review
i.besteph
Dial A For Aunties | Jesse Sutanto
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Pickpick

This book had a good mix of everything, murder, romance and comedy. It‘s hard to pick a favorite scene but the murder scene was my epic.
The aunties had me laughing crazy. Being a south Asian myself, I found the scenario very relatable. 😂😂
What a genius plot!

Book rating: 4/5

blurb
i.besteph
Unknown Book 4475976 | Unknown Unknown
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Hey everyone! My sister @bree.v08 just joined Litsy. I‘d appreciate it if you‘d hop on over to her account and say hi for me!
I hope you like it here @bree.v08 ! 😘♥️💯

ShyBookOwl Hi @bree.v08 !! Welcome 🎉 4mo
Bookwormjillk Welcome @bree.v08 4mo
AmyG Welcome 🎉 4mo
See All 10 Comments
bree.v08 @ShyBookOwl thank you so much! 4mo
bree.v08 @Bookwormjillk thanks!!! 4mo
bree.v08 @AmyG thanks so much! ♥️ 4mo
eeclayton Welcome to Litsy @bree.v08 🎉 4mo
bree.v08 @eeclayton aww thanks! 🤗 4mo
sprainedbrain Welcome, @bree.v08 😊 4mo
bree.v08 @sprainedbrain thank you!!! ♥️ 4mo
15 likes10 comments
quote
i.besteph
Malibu Rising | Taylor Jenkins Reid

Possibly my favorite quote of all time!

“He smiled to think of it, the ways in which he would mess this whole thing up. It was inevitable, wasn‘t it? The small mistakes and heartbreaks of guiding a life? His mother had screwed up almost as much as she‘d succeeded. But the one thing he knew in his bones was that he would not leave.”

quote
i.besteph
Malibu Rising | Taylor Jenkins Reid

“They had taught her that family is found, that whether it be blood or circumstance or choice, what binds us does not matter. All that matters is that we are bound.”

“Capable is a question I never had the luxury of asking. Because my family needed me.”

“But we have integrity. We know something about loyalty. We are there for each other”

quote
i.besteph
Malibu Rising | Taylor Jenkins Reid

“And he briefly considered that maybe that had been the problem all along: that he spent so much time feeling foolish instead of just letting go and risking looking like a fool. ”

“She knew that she could not sustain her life fueled only by the memories of those she once loved. Loss would not propel her forward. She had to go out and live. She had to find new people.”

quote
i.besteph
Malibu Rising | Taylor Jenkins Reid

Here are some of my favorite quotes from this book:

“But a good life is knowing people care about you, knowing you can take care of the people that count on you, knowing you‘re doing a little something in your community.”

“The world seemed no more manageable to her today than it had yesterday. Only a little less unpredictable”

Excerpt From
Malibu Rising: A Novel
PS. I‘ll be sharing a couple more :)

review
i.besteph
Crave | Tracy Wolff
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Bailedbailed

Alrighty where do I begin? I read this book halfway (chapter 34) and gave up because I couldn‘t get past the ridiculousness of the plot. (Which fyi hasn‘t even begun yet!)

Definitely a wattpad cringe- fest of Twilight, with EXTRA angst and a sprinkle of intense steamy romance. (there has been zero physical contact till as far as I read and yet sooo steamy 😂) This is yet another overhyped vampire trope.

Rating 2/5 (for the twilight reference)

sprainedbrain EXTRA angst and cringe from Twilight? Omg. 😂 4mo
TheAromaofBooks At least it's off the list!! 4mo
See All 7 Comments
i.besteph @sprainedbrain hahaha yes it is! The irony is I loved Twilight, still do but I couldn‘t stand this 😖😂 4mo
i.besteph @TheAromaofBooks Absolutely! 😂 4mo
sprainedbrain I also love Twilight but have limited patience for other stuff. 🤷🏻‍♀️ 😂 4mo
i.besteph @sprainedbrain hahaha same! 4mo
10 likes7 comments
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i.besteph
Malibu Rising | Taylor Jenkins Reid
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Pickpick

Malibu rising is the story of a broken family. A family who learned to survive despite the struggles they faced. It‘s about the bond between siblings.
Although it ended up being a bit anticlimactic.
Also I don‘t understand the need for so many plot lines for the sub characters which got me confused.
I would have loved just sticking to the main characters story without all the digressing.
But I definitely loved reading this!

Rating: 3.5/ 5

review
i.besteph
Wuthering Heights | Emily Bront
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Panpan

For all its acclaim, this story is okay. It‘s dark and has many loose ends: Another possible drawback (probably not for many) is Joseph…..I mean really? Does anyone understand what he‘s saying?
(Contd in comments ⬇️)

TLDR; This is a classic that I‘d prefer remaining in the shelf. 😓

Thanks for hosting the buddy read @Crinoline_Laphroaig ! I love reading your chapter reviews ☺️

Rating: 2/5

i.besteph Contd…Also having the characters indulging in incest doesn‘t make it any better. (There‘s more to the world than the Grange and Wuthering Heights Cathy!)
Oh and who can forget the characters with the same names! I was so confused that it took me quite a while to understand who‘s who.
5mo
batsy My edition has footnotes for most of Joseph's speech so that helped though it broke up the flow a bit. 5mo
TheAromaofBooks I am actually usually pretty good at interpreting “dialect“ on the page but... no, his made literally NO sense to me. 5mo
See All 6 Comments
i.besteph @batsy footnotes! That must‘ve been super helpful. I need to remember to get an edition like that the next time 🙌🏽🙌🏽 5mo
i.besteph @TheAromaofBooks Yep most of it was gibberish 😂😂 5mo
Crinoline_Laphroaig @I.be.Stef I'm glad you enjoyed my hosting. Honestly if I hadn't I'd a skimmed to the end. 5mo
28 likes6 comments
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i.besteph
February Fever | Jess Lourey
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Done with my list for the month of February! ✅👀

TheAromaofBooks Woohoo!!! 5mo
11 likes1 comment
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i.besteph
Dr. Zhivago | Boris Pasternak
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Here‘s my #DecemberChill playlist! Mostly just been listening to the Christmas playlist my sister and I made. The other playlist is for Advent. (Just bw you and me though, I‘ve been putting my Christmas playlist on repeat since the beginning of November!) 😂🤷🏽‍♀️
Playlist links: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/6xheRiw71pjWem8URhhNov?si=ZzIuKICERp-otfj273Ad...
https://open.spotify.com/playlist/0zpdn3LmUIGgWJUcnFLKLH?si=rZJz12JzTy2I394nPlGH...

Cinfhen This is a great playlist❣️❣️❣️definitely needs to go into rotation in November 😁 7mo
i.besteph @Cinfhen hahaha absolutely! 💯😂 7mo
17 likes2 comments
review
i.besteph
In a Holidaze | Christina Lauren
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Panpan

In a holidaze? More like just “constantly in a daze” because I have no idea what‘s going on!
I‘m probably the few percentage who didn‘t exactly like this book (my apologies to the ones who did, no offense intended).

My full review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/4347053972

i.besteph Let me get to the facts. Plot line? Brilliant! Time traveling and reliving the holidays was a fantastic way to start the story. It was funny and I even managed to actually laugh OUT LOUD ha!
And then it began crumbling…..
7mo
14 likes1 comment
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i.besteph
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Pickpick

This is a series that my sister introduced me to. Sweet Water High is a series of stand-alone books all written by different authors. It follows the individual lives of 11 students in each book.

Rating: 4.5/5
Review continued ⬇️

i.besteph (contd) On one side it‘s cheesy, corny and very predictable. But on the other hand, if you love meet-cutes or even the budding love of a high school romance, I recommend it. The books are small that you can finish it very quickly. For me however, it was too addicting that I decided to bail it. And I only read just this one book! 😂 7mo
8 likes1 comment
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i.besteph
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Pickpick

A sinister and chilling tale that takes place in a small village called Duva. This is a short story that, although is set in the the Grishaverse, it‘s set apart from the world of Grisha.

Rating: 4/5
Review continued ⬇️

i.besteph (contd) The small town is terrorized by the infamous Witch of Duva who enjoys “eating girls.”
It focuses on a girl named Nadya and her family. As a great famine hits their small village, the people grow desperate in needs and so does “the witch.”
7mo
i.besteph (contd) In its entirety, the book is dark. Brace yourself for the ending. I know it definitely caught me completely off guard! That‘s probably all I can say without spoiling it. 😅💯
7mo
10 likes2 comments
review
i.besteph
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Pickpick

A tragic backstory about the Darkling at the age of thirteen, Leigh Bardugo has delivered yet another masterpiece. When I thought I understood the Darkling and his motives, who he is and why he does what he does; then comes along this book! (or rather a short story)

Rating: 4.5/5
Review continued ⬇️

i.besteph (contd) This book gives us a brief glimpse on what started the Darkling's journey in becoming the 'Savior of Grisha' It's a touching story and you may find yourself pitying the Darkling (which is more than he deserves). 7mo
i.besteph (contd) And for those who liked the Darkling either way (psychopaths IMO) you'll just fall in love with him even more. Either way, it‘s a touching story nevertheless and somehow odd to see the Darkling so vulnerable. I guess every villain needs an origin story and this particular prequel does NOT disappoint! 7mo
15 likes2 comments
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i.besteph
Dr. Zhivago | Boris Pasternak
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Bailedbailed

#DecemberChill

It‘s a bail for me! 😭😅 I tried my best to keep up with the story. Idk if it‘s the translation edition but it was too slow and many scenes were dragged out for my taste.
I went ahead and read the plot online though so I‘m good to join the #DecmeberChill discussion ☺️

Cathythoughts I‘m finding it tough going …. I can‘t seem to concentrate 🤞🏻🤞🏻🤞🏻 7mo
i.besteph @Cathythoughts It was the same for me! I fell asleep in between chapters 😳 The plot was good though if it didn‘t have as many unnecessary scenes. 7mo
Cinfhen I‘m feeling ya @I.be.Stef @Cathythoughts it‘s a drudge!!! And I agree, SO OVERWROUGHT 7mo
See All 7 Comments
Cinfhen We‘ll still have fun sharing our chill playlists 😜 7mo
BarbaraBB You‘re definitely not the only one bailing 🤦🏻‍♀️🤦🏻‍♀️ 7mo
i.besteph @Cinfhen Hahaha idm sharing playlists. I‘ve already got mine on repeat since the beginning of this month 😂😂 7mo
i.besteph @BarbaraBB Phew! Glad to know I‘m not alone 😳😮‍💨 😅 7mo
15 likes7 comments
review
i.besteph
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Pickpick

Definitely a good read. Self help books different issues are so mainstream right now that I could hardly find a book that fit within my niche and what I was comfortable with. (Especially what I needed!)
Rev TG Morrow keeps it fairly simple with easy steps, all the while incorporating facets of the Christian faith in an easy way to understand.

Rating 5/5

review
i.besteph
Persuasione | Jane Austen
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Pickpick

Persuasion is yet another job well done by Ms. Austen. I sadly couldn‘t finish reading it with the #Pemberlittens and @sprainedbrain so I missed the watch parties but I‘m catching up on my own. 😁

All in all, I would definitely read it again. Honestly, I‘d reread all of Austen‘s works again with the #Pemberlittens if I could. What can I say? The author has that charm on me.💁🏽‍♀️✨

Rating: 5/5

Check comments for the full review! ⬇️

i.besteph 1- Unlike her other books, this one is short and beautifully written. Anne Elliot is a mature character compared to previous ones. She almost reminds me of Jane Bennet. 8mo
i.besteph 2- What story would it be if there wasn‘t an imposter suitor looking to gain something?Mr. Elliot fits the bill but I‘d say he‘s less vicious comparatively. Oh other than the fact that he stole Mrs. Clay when Anne denied his proposal 😂 8mo
i.besteph 3- Finally Captain Wentworth! IMO the character is okay. The story needed a bit more space for his development. But I couldn‘t stop seeing Darcy as I read the book. The characters are very similar.
But just as Darcy realized his mistake, Wentworth did too! Idk but when a character (especially a man 🙄) changes his ways after realizing his mistake makes me fall head over heels! (Provided he doesn‘t do it ever again :/ ) 😂😍
8mo
See All 7 Comments
Bookwormjillk Great review! 8mo
i.besteph @Bookwormjillk Thank you! 🥰💯 8mo
sprainedbrain Lovely review! ❤️ 8mo
i.besteph @sprainedbrain thank you! 🤗♥️ 8mo
24 likes7 comments
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i.besteph
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Pickpick

Beautiful story on the realities of being a christian in the modern world. St. Therese sets the bar high for us. The funny thing is, her way is called the “little way.“

She inspires me to be better everyday and moreover, she challenges me to check myself and grow in virtue. It's especially beautiful how a book written in times less modern than ours still applies to us today. Highly recommend it!

12 likes1 stack add
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i.besteph
Rule of Wolves | Leigh Bardugo
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Pickpick

Hey everyone! It‘s been a while! Life happened and I‘ve been off of Litsy but I‘m happy to be back. :)

And that‘s a wrap on Shadow and Bone. If anything, expect nothing less from Leigh Bardugo. The plot and the characters are well developed, especially Zoya.

Like the previous books, the ending isn‘t what I expected. It took me completely by surprise. It‘s bittersweet now that I‘m done with the series but I highly recommend it!

Rating: 5/5

sharread Welcome back! 🎃🎃🎃 8mo
i.besteph @sharread Thanks! 8mo
18 likes2 comments
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i.besteph
King of Scars | Leigh Bardugo
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This next book in Leigh Bardugo‘s series didn‘t disappoint. It‘s good to be back with many old characters from Shadow and Bone, especially Nikolai and the crew. The character development is 👌🏽 More importantly, I‘m excited to see Zoya find her path as a Grisha.
The only downside is I felt the story dragged in Nina Zenik‘s perspective. Maybe it‘s nostalgia but I had to stop myself from skipping them.

Rating: 4/5

review
i.besteph
Crooked Kingdom | Leigh Bardugo
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Pickpick

This book gave me solace through my covid quarantine. ICYMI; I contracted covid and was (still am) under quarantine since the beginning of August. Not fun 😷🤒

This book though has been my go-to ever since I got sick….it‘s everything!
Another impossible heist with a great set of characters. Be prepared for the ending, it‘s not a perfect happily ever after. But what else would you expect from Leigh Bardugo?

Rating: 4.5/5

mavey The best book in GrishaVerse!🤩😍 10mo
i.besteph @Mavey absolutely! 🙌🏽💯 10mo
Chrissyreadit Hope you are feeling ok! 10mo
See All 7 Comments
i.besteph @Chrissyreadit feeling a bit better but still recovering. Thanks for checking in! ❤️‍🩹 10mo
mavey @I.be.Stef Yes! Fantasy's the perfect escape(and a superbly written story from writers like Bardugo's is just the best)when recuperating. Hope you get well soon❤If you are into Fantasy, do try Sabaa Tahir's Ember Quartet! 10mo
i.besteph @Mavey thank you! I‘ll definitely check that out ♥️♥️ 10mo
mavey @I.be.Stef 💕 10mo
15 likes7 comments
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i.besteph
Six of Crows | Leigh Bardugo
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Pickpick

Beautifully written. This is not a regular book about a hero who saves the day, it‘s about thieves and an impossible heist. The protagonists are bad people but as you read along, you‘ll find yourself rooting for them despite their bad antics. I loved following the Dregs on their journey and more importantly it‘s good to be back in the grishaverse 💯🙌🏽

Rating: 5/5
Book description ⬇️

23 likes1 stack add
blurb
i.besteph
Archies' Comics | Archie Comics
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#wondrouswednesday @Eggs
Sorry for the late post but thanks for the tag @TheAromaofBooks ! 🥰♥️
1. Good question! I‘d say when NASA decided Pluto was a dwarf planet. It was weird to relearn that there are only 8 planets in our solar system 🤷🏽‍♀️😅
2. Library!
3. I wish I could say it was some classic book or a really good novel but it‘s comics that got me into reading. I read every single Archie comic sold in my local grocery when I was 8 📚🤓

Eggs You know what? I forgot that I devoured comic books as a child-Archie, Donald, celebs, Disney comics, etc. Thanks for stirring up a great memory🥳 11mo
Cinfhen Thanks so much for the tag, Steph !!! And yesssssss another comic-book fan!!!! I remember having a subscription to Archie‘s Digest @Eggs 11mo
See All 11 Comments
i.besteph @Eggs @Cinfhen Glad to know I‘m not alone 🙌🏽 Archie comics always brings back such good memories. The Disney ones were really good too. 🥰 Makes me want to read one now 😂🥳 (edited) 11mo
Eggs Ah yes the Archie Digest was the best!! @Cinfhen @I.be.Stef 11mo
QuietlyLaura Thanks for the tag! I also read some of the Archie comics as a kid! I enjoyed the stories and the fact that they were printed in a smaller, more portable size. ☺️ 11mo
LitStephanie Oh yeah, I remember my confusion when Pluto was demoted! Thanks for the tag! 11mo
i.besteph @QuietlyLaura You‘re welcome! 🤗 I loved the portable size of the comics too! It just meant I could carry more to read some more 😂 11mo
i.besteph @LitStephanie Right?!? I was confused too 🤷🏽‍♀️💯 11mo
TheAromaofBooks Oh Pluto! Such tragedy! 😂 11mo
i.besteph @TheAromaofBooks it really was! 😭😂🙌🏽 11mo
17 likes11 comments
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i.besteph
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Pickpick

#narniareadalong
Thanks @CaffeineAndCandy for organizing this. I definitely enjoyed reading the Narnia series. It was nice to step back into nostalgic memories that this series always brings in mind.
(Contd in comments ⬇️)

Rating: 3.5/5
Book description ⬇️

i.besteph (Contd) The last battle was anti-climatic in one word. IMO, I was expecting a Lion and the Witch showdown. Something dramatic. Idk. 🤷🏽‍♀️😂 It was nice to be reunited with many of the characters from earlier on, especially the Pevensies. 11mo
CaffeineAndCandy ❤️❤️❤️ 11mo
19 likes2 comments
review
i.besteph
Ruin and Rising | Leigh Bardugo
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Pickpick

One word…mind blowing. So many things (maybe this author is really good at multitasking cuz I don‘t have her focus lol) happen at once, it‘s hard to focus on one thing at a time. I constantly had to go back and reread a few chapters but even so I couldn‘t put the book down. It was too good!
(Contd in comments ⬇️)

Rating: 5/5
Book description ⬇️

i.besteph (Contd) I‘m sad to leave Alina and her story. But I also can‘t wait to discover new characters in the next few books. Most of all I‘m excited I don‘t have to leave the Grishaverse yet. 💯
11mo
21 likes1 comment
review
i.besteph
Ella Enchanted | Gail Carson Levine
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Pickpick

I‘ve watched the movie more times than i can count. In fact, it was a huge part of my childhood. But it was only recently that I found out it‘s an ACTUAL BOOK! 🤯

From all the modern retellings of fairytales, this author‘s twist on a classic fairytale is my favorite. The protagonist is simply wonderful. She‘s smart, tenacious and witty. You can‘t mess with this Cinderella. 🙌🏽💯

Rating: 4.5/5
Book description ⬇️

i.besteph Book description: At her birth, Ella of Frell receives a foolish fairy's gift—the “gift” of obedience. Ella must obey any order, whether it's to hop on one foot for a day and a half, or to chop off her own head! But strong-willed Ella does not accept her fate...

Against a bold backdrop of princes, ogres, giants, wicked stepsisters, and fairy godmothers, Ella goes on a quest to break the curse forever.
11mo
22 likes1 stack add1 comment
review
i.besteph
Siege and Storm | Leigh Bardugo
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Pickpick

A good continuation from the first book. Is it just me or is this book very fast paced?
It was a lot of things happening all at once.
But I appreciate the author‘s bleak outlook on the story. Where there needs to be drastic changes, she brings it with no mercy. As harsh as it sounds, it‘s necessary for the storyline. (Spoiler in the comments) So far I like where the story‘s going.
Rating: 4/5
Book description ⬇️

i.besteph (Contd…) Unlike Harry Potter, this author has no boundaries whatsoever when it comes to killing characters. There were many characters I fell in love with halfway only to know that they died! Why?!? 11mo
i.besteph Book description: The Darkling is more determined than ever to claim Alina's magic and use it to take the Ravkan throne. With nowhere else to turn, Alina enlists the help of an infamous privateer and sets out to lead the Grisha army. 11mo
i.besteph (Contd…) But as the truth of Alina's destiny unfolds, she slips deeper into the Darkling's deadly game of forbidden magic, and further away from her humanity. To save her country, Alina will have to choose between her power and the love she thought would always be her shelter. No victory can come without sacrifice - and only she can face the oncoming storm. 11mo
21 likes1 stack add3 comments
blurb
i.besteph
A Song for Summer | Eva Ibbotson
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#HolidayEscape Day 2!

My top 5 songs that perfectly sum up summer of 2021. I don‘t have a playlist for summer per se but I go by what‘s on repeat on my phone. Besides these, I‘ve been jamming to 2010s songs like Rihanna, Chris Brown, Linkin Park, Green Day and the like. Nostalgic for the time when I was 12🥰😆
How does the time fly?!?

https://open.spotify.com/playlist/0kTBhWVcDB84gnkPoJQljW?si=jyJcZ9_SRLqZP4Pi27s9...

BarbaraBB Love this playlist! 12mo
i.besteph @BarbaraBB Thank you! 💖 12mo
14 likes2 comments
blurb
i.besteph
Holiday Escapes: A Bluestocking Belles Collection | Sherry Ewing, Susana Ellis, Jude Knight
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#HolidayEscape Day 1
Posting a few of my wonderful escapes from before the pandemic. I really miss this!
These pics are a few of the things I love to do and can‘t wait to get back to. (Top to right) Exploring an old city, enjoying sunsets and hiking.

I don‘t know when life will ever get back to normal again. I don‘t think normal will be the same. But one thing common in all these pics is enjoying the little things in life. My mantra for now :)

TrishB Very true ❤️ 12mo
BarbaraBB So true indeed. Wonderful photos 12mo
i.besteph @TrishB @BarbaraBB 🤗♥️♥️ 12mo
erzascarletbookgasm Beautiful snapshots! 12mo
i.besteph @erzascarletbookgasm thank you! ♥️ 12mo
14 likes5 comments
review
i.besteph
Orkney | Amy Sackville
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Mehso-so

#holidayescape
A solid so-so. I was going to pan it but changed my mind as I finished the book.
(I have a theory about the ending) Full review is in the comments ⬇️
TLDR; it‘s a good read if you have the patience to get through it. Personally though, I don‘t think I‘ll read it again. :/

Next time can we go to a summery place for the #buddyread please?? 😂
Rating: 3/5
Book description ⬇️

i.besteph My review: First of all, I couldn‘t get past the mundane, almost monotonous days (chapters). Initially it was poetic and almost dreamlike. But then it began to be repetitive to a point where I got frustrated with his obsession. I skipped a few chapters to get ahead. 🤷🏽‍♀️
(contd…)
12mo
i.besteph (contd…) Secondly, I couldn‘t digest the whole 40 year gap. Richard lives in his head throughout the book. And it‘s clear that he remembers things wrong. I can‘t shake the feeling that he‘s forced himself on his “little wife” rather than the other way around. There‘s a part that says she has a headache but relents….🤢 12mo
i.besteph (contd…) Besides that, it‘s beyond creepy how he‘s always watching her like a hawk from his window. Little kids I understand, wife I don‘t get.

Thirdly, the reason why I gave this book a so-so is because of the author‘s writing. The POV of the creepy husband is spot on.
12mo
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i.besteph (contd…) And lastly, for my theory about the ending. Based on the mysterious disappearance of his wife, either one of the below 3 could‘ve happened: 12mo
i.besteph 1. She really was a selkie and found her home. (And lived happily ever after)
2. She ran away in the middle of the night because she understood that life with Richard would be hard. He‘s a creepy stalker and would never leave her alone
3. Richard could‘ve killed her and not know it since he lived in his head a lot. He could‘ve mixed up reality with fantasy.
(edited) 12mo
Cinfhen I agree with your ENTIRE review!! You hit on almost all of our discussion questions 🤓Discussion is this Sunday 2pmEST 12mo
Cinfhen And yes, not my idea of a summer vacation/ at all 🤪 12mo
i.besteph @Cinfhen Awesome! I‘ll get my list on Sunday! 😂🙌🏽 12mo
BarbaraBB Wonderful review! Looking forward to the weekend! 12mo
i.besteph @BarbaraBB thank you! Can‘t wait for Sunday. ☺️😆 12mo
erzascarletbookgasm Aye for a summery place vacation! 😁 12mo
22 likes11 comments
blurb
i.besteph
Orkney | Amy Sackville
This post contains spoilers
show me
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“And Thomas told the crofter that the ladies he had seen were the daughters of the King of Lochlann, from beyond the sea‘s brim, and explained what the crofter must do if he wished to capture a sea-princess, when the selkie women came back.”

What are the odds that I found this post on Instagram about selkies and the Statue of Kopakonan- ‘The seal woman‘?!

To read check comments/ click:https://www.instagram.com/p/CQAIv3Br2DA/?utm_medium=copy_link

i.besteph What is this photo about? The Statue of Kopakonan. ‘The Seal woman‘. Faroe Islands.
_

The legend of Kópakonan (the Seal Woman) is one of the best-known folktales in the Faroe Islands.
(edited) 12mo
i.besteph (contd…) The myth goes: Seals were believed to be former human beings who voluntarily sought death in the ocean. Once a year, on the Thirteenth night, they were allowed to come on land, strip off their skins and amuse themselves as human beings, dancing and enjoying themselves. 12mo
i.besteph (Contd…) If their seal skin is hidden or stolen, they are unable to return to the sea.

The Seal Woman commemorates a particularly well known story about a beautiful Selkie (Selkies are a variation on the mermaid concept in Scottish, Irish, Icelandic and Faroese folklore) trapped by a fisherman on the island of Kalsoy, who hides her seal skin while she is on land one night. Trapped, she becomes his wife and they have 2 children.
12mo
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i.besteph (Contd…) One day however, he goes fishing and she finds her seal skin hidden in a chest in their home. She escapes back to her Selkie family after ensuring the children are cared for until the fisherman's return.

She leaves behind a message to not follow her and to not harm her Selkie family. The fishermen however ignore the warning and end up killing both her Selkie husband and Selkie children.
12mo
i.besteph (Contd…) In revenge she curses the men of the island to die in frequent accidents until as many have perished as can link arms around the whole island.

The 9 ft bronze and stainless steel statue of Kópakonan (The Seal Wife) was created by Hans Pauli Olsen and was installed in the Mikladalur Harbor on Kalsoy, one of the Faroe Islands, on August 1st, 2014.
12mo
Cinfhen How unbelievable!!! The underworld is calling to us…And now I‘m thinking of the soundtrack from The Little Mermaid 🧜🏼‍♀️ Thanks for sharing 🥰 12mo
i.besteph @Cinfhen hahaha I can see that! You‘re welcome :) 12mo
Riveted_Reader_Melissa Thanks so much for sharing! 12mo
BarbaraBB Fantastic picture. And indeed what are the odds? 12mo
i.besteph @Riveted_Reader_Melissa You‘re welcome! 💖 12mo
i.besteph @BarbaraBB I agree! 🙌🏽💯 12mo
5 likes11 comments
review
i.besteph
Life of the Beloved | Henri J. M. Nouwen
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Pickpick

Recommended book by an influencer I follow on Instagram and I thought why not? I was meaning to add spiritual reading to my tbr anyway.
I was enthralled by the writing. The author opens a whole new door for believers to understand Christ in a new light or rather how you should look at yourself in the eyes of God. It‘s all so new to me that I‘m going to read this again to understand it better. I highly recommend it!

Rating:5/5
Book description ⬇️

i.besteph Book description: Initially written for a Jewish friend, Life of the Beloved has become Henri Nouwen‘s greatest legacy to Christians around the world. This sincere testimony of the power and invitation of Christ is indeed a great guide to a truly uplifting spiritual life in today‘s world. 12mo
8 likes1 comment
review
i.besteph
Shadow and Bone | Leigh Bardugo
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Pickpick

I‘m a newbie to the Grishaverse and I wasn‘t disappointed!
Netflix did a great job adapting this. I loved reading this and watching the series at the same time. (Ben Barnes as the Darkling anyone?😍)

TLDR; I love the series both the books and on Netflix. 💯 Recommend! 🙌🏽
(Review contd in the comments ⬇️)

Rating: 4.5/5
Book description ⬇️

i.besteph Review: The book itself is a buildup to the universe. You go in not knowing anything and come out a pro at everything Grisha. It seems a bit information overload but that makes it all the more fun to explore. (contd…) 12mo
i.besteph (contd…) Although I don‘t side with the protagonist (blame women empowerment 😂), it does portray a sad reality of how women are manipulated constantly by the ideologies of society and men. It‘s good to see a break in Alina‘s character in the end. I hope to see that continue in the 2nd book. 12mo
i.besteph (contd…) The whole series gives you Harry Potter + Hunger Games + Lord of the Rings vibes. So the story is cliché in a way. However, even with a repeated storyline, it brings with it a twist especially with the Russian heritage (which I love!) and a very manipulative villain. It‘s another fandom waiting to burst at the seams. 12mo
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i.besteph Book description: Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling. 12mo
LitStephanie I am loving the show. Now I want to read the book. 12mo
i.besteph @LitStephanie You‘ll love it! I‘m mind blown by the detailing in the Netflix show. It‘s very accurate to the books. 12mo
mavey Grishaverse🤩!! You'll love the sequel too! Bardugo brings us a great character😍 and beautiful development of the rest of the cast! 12mo
i.besteph @Mavey Really?!? I can‘t wait to get at it. Just based on what you said I think I literally might breeze through the series. It‘s too good! 😍🙌🏽💯 12mo
mavey @I.be.Stef Yes!! You will be mindblown by the Crows in the Dregs Duology!! Crooked Kingdom is my fave! Looking forward to your reviews!💕 12mo
i.besteph @Mavey Awesome! I‘ll let you know when I get to them for sure! 💯♥️ 12mo
mavey @I.be.Stef Sure!💖 12mo
25 likes1 stack add11 comments
review
i.besteph
Emma | Jane Austen
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Pickpick

So here‘s an unpopular opinion; Emma is a good book. The irony is I thought I wouldn‘t like this going in. Instead, I found myself hooked on each chapter wanting to know what happens next. 😂🙌🏽

I enjoyed reading this along with the #pemberlittens. The memes were hilarious! Thanks @sprainedbrain ! I love reading along with your posts. 💯🙌🏽 I can‘t wait for the watch party now!
(⬇️Review contd in the comments⬇️)

Rating: 5/5
Book description ⬇️

i.besteph Review:
I was struck by the character development. Emma can easily be liked while being hated at the same time. The same applies for Miss. Bates.
I found her very annoying but later on I came to like her and her incessant chatter.
12mo
i.besteph Review contd: In a lot of ways, albeit exaggerated, the character traits are very relatable. Besides that I like Austen‘s way of writing. As a reader I found myself judging the characters in the beginning only to sympathize them in the end. It opens my eyes to how much of a Mrs. Elton I can be 😂🤦🏽‍♀️
All in all this novel comes to 2nd place in my list right after P&P!
12mo
i.besteph Book description: Emma Woodhouse is one of Austen's most captivating and vivid characters. Beautiful, spoilt, vain and irrepressibly witty, Emma organizes the lives of the inhabitants of her sleepy little village and plays matchmaker with devastating effect. 12mo
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Lcsmcat I‘m on your (and Emma‘s) side. I think she‘s young and untried in the beginning but grows substantially. And you can tell by her patience and care of her father that she‘s not selfish. Just young and inexperienced. 12mo
LitStephanie I love your review! 12mo
sprainedbrain Great review! I don‘t think it‘s an unpopular opinion, though—Emma is one of Austen‘s most loved, I think! ❤️ 12mo
i.besteph @Lcsmcat Exactly! I completely agree with you. 12mo
i.besteph @LitStephanie thank you! ♥️ 12mo
i.besteph @sprainedbrain Really? I never knew that 😅 It seems the general opinion amongst my friends that they like this book the least. I guess overall it could be looked as the most beloved. (edited) 12mo
sprainedbrain I‘ve always been one of those people who said I liked it the least of Austen‘s novels (though I still liked it)… but I think that‘s changing with this reread. Maybe everyone should read it at least twice. 😂 12mo
i.besteph @sprainedbrain hahaha I agree! 12mo
Crinoline_Laphroaig I like Emma. She's a snob at times but has a good heart. I read something awhile back about how it's like she's taking care of a parent with Alzheimer's. Plan to find and post that when we finish. It changed my perspective. 12mo
Crinoline_Laphroaig I take Emma being a snob over Marianne's dramatic in Sense and Sensibility any day. 12mo
i.besteph @Crinoline_Laphroaig I side with you! I couldn‘t handle Marianne in S&S either 🤦🏽‍♀️ That‘s a very intriguing perspective. You have to share that post when we‘re done. Tag me please so that I don‘t miss it. ☺️❤️❤️ (edited) 12mo
Crinoline_Laphroaig @I.be.Stef will do! 12mo
24 likes15 comments
blurb
i.besteph
Emma | Jane Austen
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#pemberlittens
Not the clearest pic hahaha but I‘m in love with this movie!😍 Probably it‘s because of all the memes @sprainedbrain posts from this version of Emma 😂😂

When it came out last year, I wasn‘t the biggest fan. It wasn‘t my favorite. But as I started reading Emma for the first time this month with the #pemberlittens I fell in love with the book and the movie. So much that I‘ve rewatched it twice today! 😂🤷🏽‍♀️

sprainedbrain God I love that movie. (Obviously) 13mo
i.besteph @sprainedbrain I can see that! You‘ve passed the bug and now it‘s become an unhealthy obsession for me 🤷🏽‍♀️😂 13mo
4thhouseontheleft I‘ve been holding off on watching the new Emma until I finish my reread along with chapter a day! 13mo
i.besteph @4thhouseontheleft You‘ll love it! IMO it‘s better than the ‘96 version. Let me know what you think of it when you‘ve watched it :) 13mo
28 likes4 comments
review
i.besteph
Avatar: The Last Airbender--North and South Part One | Gene Luen Yang, Michael Dante DiMartino, Bryan Konietzko
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Mehso-so

Finished another trilogy in the ATLA series and heading on to the next!

This was okay. I find a repeating storyline in this and the previous one. It gets quite boring to read the same thing in a different scenario. Hoping the next book is different🤞🏽

Rating: 3.5/5
Books description ⬇️

i.besteph Book description: The trilogy is set following the events of Smoke and Shadow. As a close sequel to the original Avatar series, it depicts events that occur seventy years before the sequel series The Legend of Korra. 13mo
13 likes1 comment
review
i.besteph
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Pickpick

#narniareadalong
Late review. I finished this book last week after my colorful quotes post 😂

A very good read. By far my favorite after the Lion and the Witch.

As I slowly got used to the author‘s style it became easier to read. I‘ve noticed a pattern in the books. It starts out a little slow paced but gets interesting halfway through.

Rating: 4.5/5
Book description ⬇️

i.besteph Book description: The Horse and his Boy is a stirring and dramatic fantasy story that finds a young boy named Shasta on the run from his homeland with the talking horse, Bree. When the pair discover a deadly plot by the Calormen people to conquer the land of Narnia, the race is on to warn the inhabitants of the impending danger and to rescue them all from certain death. 13mo
15 likes1 comment
quote
i.besteph
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#narniareadalong #quotes
This by far is my favorite book in the series. Probably because in many ways it‘s personally relatable to me.

Just wanted to post a snippet of what the pages look like 😂

I‘m mind blown by the beautiful euphemism of Christ in the story! We don‘t get to see Aslan a lot but man when he shows up it‘s happy and sad at the same time. Happy bc yay he came, sad bc he disappears just as fast as he came. 🥲

blurb
i.besteph
Pride and Prejudice | Jane Austen
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#two4Tuesday @TheSpineView
Thanks for the tag @LitStephanie ♥️
It‘s been so long since I posted one of these!

1. Tbh the only book club I‘m in is the #pemberlittens and I joined it for the sole purpose of reading P&P. By far my favorite Austen work. No surprise there 😂
2. I‘m a huge vampire fan so anything to do with that genre. There‘s an ongoing series called Crave by Tracy Wolff that I‘d like to read with a book club.

QuietlyLaura Thanks for the tag! ☺️ 13mo
LitStephanie I love P&P, too. Never get tired of it. 13mo
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TheSpineView Thanks for playing! 13mo
i.besteph @QuietlyLaura @TheSpineView 🤗♥️♥️ (edited) 13mo
Mishu94 @I.be.Stef sorry! I was inactive for a while but now I‘m back! 😬😬 13mo
i.besteph @Mishu94 Hey! So glad to hear from you! I was wondering where you were. Tbh I thought of contacting you on Instagram but then I realized idk your username 😅🙈 Hope all is good? ♥️ 13mo
Mishu94 @I.be.Stef haha all‘s good! Things just got a little crazy! ❤️❤️ awww thank you so much!!! ❤️❤️ what‘s your insta username? I‘ll add you! 😬😬 13mo
i.besteph That‘s good to know! It‘s been the same for me. Somehow I‘ve been much more busy staying at home then actually being at work. 😂😂 My username‘s @_i.be.stef_ (See you there! 🤗♥️) 13mo
Mishu94 @I.be.Stef haha it can get too much 😂 13mo
17 likes11 comments
review
i.besteph
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Pickpick

This one got better halfway through. The adventure picks up from the middle and that‘s when it gets interesting only for it to abruptly end. It could‘ve prolonged a bit more.
I wish Eustace and Prince Rilian were given more “screen time.” Jill and Puddleglum are characters I thought I didn‘t need but I change my mind. Puddleglum is my favorite. 😁
#narniareadalong

Rating: 4/5
Book description ⬇️

i.besteph Book description:
Eustace and Jill escape from the bullies at school through a strange door in the wall, which, for once, is unlocked. It leads to the open moor...or does it? Once again Aslan has a task for the children, and Narnia needs them. Through dangers untold and caverns deep and dark, they pursue the quest that brings them face to face with the evil Witch. She must be defeated if Prince Rillian is to be saved.
13mo
11 likes1 comment
review
i.besteph
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Pickpick

I breezed through this book a week ago but unfortunately I forgot to post a review 😅
imo this is the perfect fill in if you miss the series and it was nice to see different perspectives on the story. Also, I don‘t want to spoil anything but there are some surprises 😉

All in all, this one tied the whole series in a big knot and ends it with exactly that, a happily ever after.
Rating: 4/5
Book description ⬇️

i.besteph Book description: The contents of Happily Ever After are as follows:

-The Prince (with the two bonus chapters), Maxon‘s novella
-The Guard, Aspen‘s novella
-The Queen, Amberly‘s novella
-The Favorite, Marlee‘s novella
-Three scenes from Celeste‘s POV
-Lucy‘s scene (bonus scene from The One)
-The bonus epilogue
-Where are they now?
-A map
-Various illustrations
13mo
9 likes1 comment
review
i.besteph
The One | Kiera Cass
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Mehso-so

I‘m surprised this one let me down. I was so invested in this to be the best one of all that I read it in a day.

It was good halfway through and then I couldn‘t get past the DRAMA. Really all we needed was some simple COMMUNICATION. How hard was that??

For a trilogy though, the first two books easily are better than this one.
(Review contd in the comments⬇️)

Rating: 3.5/5 (.5 because I‘m a sucker for the romance😍😂)
Book description ⬇️

i.besteph Review: I also felt the ending rushed by. I guess in a way it was as dramatic as the protagonist herself 😂. I wanted to know more about the government and their reign as new King and Queen.

I get it in the end it‘s a romance novel but it needed a bit more depth. There‘s a lot of questions left unanswered, major loopholes and more deets on the wedding? Is that too much to ask? 😫😅
14mo
i.besteph Book description: The time has come for one winner to be crowned.

When she was chosen to compete in the Selection, America never dreamed she would find herself anywhere close to the crown—or to Prince Maxon's heart. But as the end of the competition approaches, and the threats outside the palace walls grow more vicious, America realizes just how much she stands to lose—and how hard she'll have to fight for the future she wants.
14mo
18 likes2 comments