July 28, 2022

2022 Midyear Book Haul

old photo

I just wanted to make a separate post for all the books I purchased/received so far. Just sharing and briefly talking about them. Had to have them on a separate post from my midyear update since this haul has gotten out of hand since it's been six months but I've also done a little self restraint from time to time. lol. I didnt get a book the entire April which really surprised me.

As always, I like the contrasts of my books. It's always a mixed bag for me. I got the usual fiction and I'm also starting to get more non-fiction. Reading The Bronx Zoom a couple of weeks back, tells me that I actually enjoy reading nonfiction. There aren't much dialogue and mostly a narration of events I already know with a few insider interviews. The mixture of true crimes and thriller and crime fiction to all those light/fun and sometimes partly serious chicklit romcom to break the seriousness of my reads to the somewhat hard reads like You'd Be Home by Now and Heroine. Looking at these also kind of reminded me that I don't read much SFF. I'm into scifi but surprisingly, I haven't bought any recently because whenever I'm in the bookstore, I'd gravitate towards the chicklit romance section (altho I am reading a scifi book right now).

NOW on to the books!

June 29, 2022

Hello!! Here's an Update and Maybe I'm Back

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I just wanted to post an update. again. We're halfway thru the year.

I also kind of want to get back to blogging slowly :) Even though I've been reading slower than usual, I usually think about how I'll be reviewing books once I finish them. So one of these days, I want to sit down and actually try and write my thoughts on books I recently read.

Little life update, I got a new laptop because my last one finally broke down after eight years. I went back to the office three months ago and went to a work travel in between that as well (see my personal instagram if you're interested 😊). I'm still on a terrible reading slump which is kind of a carryover from last year which I also mentioned on my post early this year. We're halfway through the year and somehow I don't want to panic over not reading enough books but, yes, I'm also kind of panicking. lol. I'll just like to see how my mood will get better and get back to reading like before.

On another life update, as much as I'd like to keep up with my usual photos, we're in between moving houses and trying to build a new one. So I can't take photos like before but I'd really like to see how I can get around this and create new style of photos. Also, if you haven't done so, feel free to follow me on my bookstragam account @czai_ which I'm slowly getting back into posting on (even though it's mostly just old photos I took, lol).

I just want this to be a post for my bookish updates then I'll see where this takes me. I have a separate book haul posts because it's been six months and I'm clearly buying more than I'm reading. Reading-wise, I've only finished seven books so far this year. lol. But let's still talk about that!

January 19, 2022

DECEMBER WRAP UP (aka the month of trying to catch up)


I wanna try and keep up with the updates here.

So 2022 started on an unfortunate note for me. Got sick on the first week (or less). It most likely was COVID but I opted not to leave my room and it was an absolutely lonely time. It did allow me to finish my book journal set up (and it's my first time trying this out) but I still haven't read much. Haven't finished a book but I don't want to panic this early in the year. Rough start reading-wise but it's okay, it's probably just a bit of continuation from last year. There's still 11 and a half months of 2022.

SO, sad things aside, I ordered Roxy early this year as a mini gift for myself since all I've been purchasing are ebooks. So I got one of my most anticipated books from 2021. I don't really know much about this book. I'm really just here to read all of Neal Shusterman's books.

I'm currently in the middle of A Crown of Wishes which I started late December and hoped to finish before 2022 but alas, here I am still struggling with it. I'll probably sell or give this book away along with its companion book Star-Touched Queen when I finish this. I need to unhaul soon especially since we'll be moving to a smaller house soon.

Now for series, I recently finished/watched!
- Mindhunters - just finished this and it was good. It was interesting although admittedly there were a few slow times. There were also times when I won't care for certain characters. There was a point that Holden's personal life just got boring and probably non-existent, Bill's got me curious and sad, and Wendy, fairly indifferent until the final couple of episodes.
- Narcos S3 + Narcos: Mexico - S3 was absolutely amazing. I liked following the Cali Cartel over Pablo Escobar just because they feel smarter and more calculating while Escobar was... chaotic. For Mexico, I was a bit hesitant at first because it'll be a whole new cast. It definitely started intriguing and after a couple of episodes, I was hooked and always excited for it.
- Ozark - I wanted a dark show involving another organized crime thing and some people said that if you like Breaking Bad, this is a good show and is comparable to it and idk if it's just me or those people were joking around but it's NOTHING like Breaking Bad vibes. I mean I get it, the guy's in an unfortunate situation but every episode is just... boring (?). Please tell me it gets exciting.
- Big Bang Theory - it's an endless rewatch for me, I guess. 
- on a side note, we also watched Encanto and damn that was sooooo good! I still have the OST on repeat on Spotify.


December 10, 2021

SEPT-OCT-NOV WRAP UP (aka the life update)

thought i got the books in order of when i finished them. lol.


Three months went by.

Mentally, I'm all over the place. I'm just doing work, trying to read, watching a couple of stuff on Netflix, and doing home chores. Nothing special and it really feels like a dead end sometimes. I still write on my journal on a somewhat daily basis to keep myself on track and talk to friends just to get stuff out of my head. I'm trying to bounce back on life. Not exactly on blogging though. I still don't know if I'll get back to this like before but right now, I just want an update here.

I'm still on a reading slump. Over those three months, I only finished five books. In November, I completely threw out the idea of making a tbr since I'm not really doing much in terms of reading in general. lol. Currently, I'm in the middle of Monsters of Men by Patrick Ness and Simmer Down by Sarah Smith which I just started and hopefully I can speed through it.

Since I haven't been reading much, I got myself into watching stuff (aside from wasting my time playing Honkai Impact 3rd). The last couple of months, I watched,
You S3 - I enjoyed it even though it really deviates from the book.
- Good Girls - enjoyed it. It was exciting. I love the drama but the series finale was 'meh.' It had a good point and a lot of unfinished business and a couple of points I absolutely didn't like.
- Narcos S1 & S2 - just finished the first two seasons and it's quite interesting. After watching Breaking Bad (early this year?? or late last year, I think?) I'm somewhat inclined to just watch series related to drugtrafficking and stuff (?). idk. lol.
- the entire Hunger Games movie series - my sister said it's my comfort movie and maybe it is since I'm not really a big movie rewatcher kind of person. I still absolutely loved all of them! Would definitely rewatch it (and reread it!) again.
- Mindhunters - I like this but I'm watching it with my best friend so I can't binge it so I'm still not done. But it is really intriguing.
- the entire Fear Street movie series - first movie was meh. I complained so much (?). second movie was quite exciting. third movie kinda wrapped stuff up nicely. But overall, I didn't like the main girls. That's just it.


September 20, 2021


author: Junji Ito, Yuji Oniki (Translator)  
genre: manga, horror
published: April 21st 2015 by VIZ Media LLC (first published 2002)
my copy: hardcover, 397 pages
purchase: Amazon | B&N | Book Depository
rating: 4 / 5 stars

Something is rotten in Okinawa...
The floating smell of death hangs over the island. What is it? A strange, legged fish appears on the scene... So begins Tadashi and Kaori's spiral into the horror and stench of the sea. Here is the creepiest masterpiece of horror manga ever from the creator of Uzumaki, Junji Ito. Hold your breath until all is revealed.
Junji Ito never disappoints!

I read Uzumaki by Junji Ito years and years ago. It was such an old (and maybe even classic already) horror manga and it was haunting. Gyo is honestly on the same boat. It's got that creepy story and haunting atmosphere.

September 15, 2021

[REVIEW] Nice Girls

 Nice Girls
author: Catherine Dang  
genre: adult, mystery, thriller
published: September 7th 2021 by William Morrow
my copy: eGalley, 320 pages
purchase: Amazon | B&N | Book Depository
rating: 3 / 5 stars

A pulse-pounding and deviously dark debut, written with the psychological acuity and emotional punch of Luckiest Girl Alive and All the Missing Girls, that explores the hungry, angry, dark side of girlhood and dares to ask what is most dangerous to a woman: showing the world what it wants to see, or who she really is? 
What did you do? 
Growing up in Liberty Lake, Minnesota, Mary was chubby, awkward, and smart. Earning a scholarship to an Ivy League school was her ticket out; she was going to do great things and never look back. Three years later, “Ivy League Mary” is back—a thinner, cynical, and restless failure. Kicked out of Cornell at the beginning of senior year, she won’t tell anyone why. Working at the local grocery store, she sees familiar faces from high school and tries to make sense of the past and her life. 
When beautiful, magnetic Olivia Willand, a rising social media star, goes missing, Mary—like the rest of Liberty Lake—becomes obsessed. Best friends in childhood, Mary and Olivia haven’t spoken in years. Everyone admired Olivia, but Mary knows better than anyone that behind the Instagram persona hid a willful, manipulative girl with sharp edges. As the world worries for perfect, lovely Olivia, Mary can’t help but hate her. She also believes that her disappearance is tied to another missing person—a nineteen-year-old girl named DeMaria Jackson whose disappearance has gone under the radar.   
Who was the true Olivia Willand, and where did she go? What happened to DeMaria? As Mary delves deeper into the lives of the two missing girls, old wounds bleed fresh and painful secrets threaten to destroy everything. 
Maybe no one is really a nice girl, after all.
started strong, tried to do more.

I'm definitely the type to try out every mystery/thriller because why not. They may all feel the same but who knows, maybe there's some aspect I'll like. Sometimes I do wonder what I really, really look for in a mystery/thriller that I just pick up most that I can get my hands on. Nice Girls has a very typical-ish plot when you read that synopsis. and somehow, yeah... it is..

September 12, 2021

[WEEKEND READS] where I try to stop an on coming slump


I'm sorry that I've still been away. There's work and there's my mood and there's a ugly weather that worries me all the time.

I decided not to get 1984 get into me so much so I picked up Ramona Blue. I don't need another slump at this time of the year especially since the last one got my head start on my goal all wiped out. lmao. I'm trying to make up for readings lost by reading YAs and short books that I have quite high hopes aka Severance.

On other things, I've been watching The I.T. Crowd on Netflix. I know it's trash but I just want something quick and something I don't need to care about. My head is not ready for heavy shows right now I guess. I've also been spending so much time (probably in the last month or so already) watching Sims Let's Play videos on Youtube. Just fun chill stuff. Lastly, I'm so glad that the Yankees finally won a game. At this point, I doubt they'll make the playoffs but I'm still hoping, as a fan.
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