2017 Resolutions, Wintersession, and New Ideas

Hi everyone! Last time I posted I was back at home, still on break, cuddling with my cat, and it was still 2016. Now, I’m back at school, just started Wintersession, and it’s 2017.

The first thing I want to talk about is my 2017 reading and blogging resolutions! I mentioned in my first post back after 6 months that I let a lot of release dates slip by me – books unread, reviews unwritten. Well, my friends, my goal for 2017 is to not let that happen again. Before I read anything else, I’m going to move through my pile of ARCs until they’re all read. I also plan to purchase the few eARCs that I’d requested and then let expire so that I can keep my promise to review them for the publishers. Since coming to college my incoming book flow has definitely slowed way down, which I think is actually a good thing. If you asked me if I could name some upcoming releases I’m excited about, I wouldn’t be able to tell you more than a couple. That’s how out of the loop I’ve been. So, considering I’m in college for another 5 months or so, the same will be true for my near future, allowing me to read what I’ve already got.

Second, you’re probably thinking, “Hey, Emily? I though college life is so busy that you don’t have time for anything but work?” Regular semesters: YES. Wintersession: NO. It’s my first Wintersession at RISD so I wasn’t sure what exactly to expect, but I can tell you after a week, it’s about a quarter of the rigor a regular semester. We only have to take one studio class, and can choose to take a liberal (I was going to take Fiction into Film, but it was later canceled, so no liberal for me). Wintersession is the time when RISD encourages freshmen to test out their future major, so I’m taking a Web Design class in the Graphic Design department! I’m so excited about what I’ll learn for so many reasons. One of them is that I’ll finally be able to design and code the blog layout of my dreams for Books & Cleverness!

So now that you know I’ve got some free time, you can expect some posts from me here in the next 5 weeks! I actually just started and finished a book yesterday! I’m planning on writing “review digest” posts, where I feature a few books that I’ve read recently and share my thoughts. I’ve been finding it extremely hard to write full-length reviews for books lately.

That’s about it! I’m so happy that I’m getting the chance to return to the book blogging world again for a short while. While I can truthfully say that I didn’t really miss it while I was engulfed in first-semester work, I can say that now that I’m back reading again I feel like my old self.

Talk to you very very soon!

xo

Exciting Life News!

Hi guys! I’ve been a bit absent again. Life’s been pretty crazy getting ready for Christmas, finishing up projects for school, and reading for my AP Lit class. If you were wondering we’re finishing up Tess of the d’Urbervilles before Christmas break. BUT, amidst all that craziness was the magical day of December 10th, 2015. Why so magical, you ask? Well, that was the day that I got my first (and what will be my only) college acceptance letter! I am so, SO, SOOO happy to say that I’ll be attending my dream school next fall!! It’s that kind of famous art school located in Rhode Island…

I was a nervous wreck leading up to finding out, and needless to say I was crying hysterically while reading the email aloud to my parents. I am extremely proud of myself for being accepted. I worked my bum off and I think that could show in my application and portfolio.

So now I’m celebrating and planning to spend my break relaxing with lots of books! I’ve got a bunch of review copies that have piled up — some pretty exciting ones! Keep an eye out on my Goodreads for sneaks at my thoughts on those.

Talk to you guys very soon!

xo

College Apps, Updates, and Apologies

Dear Lovely People,

Emily here! Surprise! I took quite the hiatus without really letting anyone know. I wasn’t really sure I was going to go full-out hiatus, myself, to be honest. But it turns out I did. I feel like all I do in update posts anymore is apologize, so I’m going to make this one short and sweet and get on with updating you on my life, etc.

To all the publishers and bloggers who I’ve missed deadlines for: I’m so sorry. Fulfilling those deadlines for reviews and posts is my #1 priority before anything else now that I’m back And to all of you amazing readers: Thanks so much for sticking with me, even through all the many hiatuses I seem to take! I love you guys and chatting with you is what keeps me going (along with my love of books of course!)

So enough with the apologies…

I applied to college!! I can’t believe that I actually did it. The time snuck up on me, and before I knew it I was an official college applicant. I’ll find out if I get in mid-December!

Senior year is going smoothly, and I’m loving the classes I’m taking. If you’re friends with me on Goodreads you’ll have seen the books I’ve been reading for my AP Lit class: So far Pride & Prejudice, The Admirable Crichton and now on to Pygmalion. Between those books and getting my portfolio ready for college apps I haven’t had time to read much (or blog, obviously).

I’m so behind in the world of YA lit! Seriously, if you’ve heard of any upcoming releases, publishing news, ARCs I should be pining for etc, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE SHARE!! I’m desperate to be back in the loop!

Well, I’m officially back for good this time. I should have a review up of Famous in Love by Rebecca Serle next week. I read it a while ago now, but fingers crossed I’ll remember enough to write a good review! As soon as I finish this post I’m going to be starting These Shallow Graves by Jennifer Donnelly, which is releasing next week. It sounds very creepy and perfect for the fall/Halloween season.

Again, I’d love to hear what’s been going on in the blogging and YA community! PLEASE SHARE!

I love you all, and thanks for sticking with me!

xo

In which I become a Senior…

Back to the Books

Hi everyone! It’s been awhile since I’ve written a post that has been something other than a book review, and while book reviews are GREAT, I wanted to share what’s been happening in my life. In less than two weeks I’ll be going back to school as a senior (!!!), hence I’m taking the time now to write a post before I get waterlogged with work. The summer has been a nice break from the hectic school schedule, but I’m gearing up for college apps, AP classes, and lots of work once more.

This summer I tried to focus my time on blogging, but other than writing reviews, I felt like I was having a hint of the dreaded blogger burnout. I wasn’t coming up with any good ideas to write about, and therefore I just didn’t write posts at all (which helped a lot actually).

While I have been reading tons of YA this summer, I’ve also been doing my summer work for my AP Lit class. You may have noticed if you’re friends with me on Goodreads that I read early on in the summer How to Read Literature Like a Professor by Thomas C. Foster. I really liked it a lot, and enjoyed his entertaining view on the sometimes dry subject of analyzing lit. Then I continued on to reading Genesis (yes, the Bible), which I have to say lacked the same entertaining flair as Foster’s writing did (haha). You could say I procrastinated a little, but I only just started reading my next book East of Eden by John Steinbeck last week, and am a little more than halfway through it. I read The Grapes of Wrath last summer for another class, and am so happy to find that East of Eden is actually very entertaining and thought provoking. I really am just loving reading to see what other evils Cathy does next (I’m not evil, I promise). After I finish venturing to Eden I’ll move on to The Poisonwood Bible. That’s code for: Emily won’t be reading many more (if any more) books for pleasure this summer.

I have a bunch of September ARCs that I’m hoping to get through amongst the craziness that is life, so keep a look out for more reviews in the near future.

Along with school comes time for college applications. I’m applying to only art schools, which means that I’m still working really hard to get my portfolio together to the best that it can be. Wish me luck! I don’t think there’ll ever be a time in my life that will be as busy as it is right now, but I know it will all pay off in the end!

Thanks for staying with me, and talk soon!xo

The Future of Books & Cleverness

Don’t worry — this post isn’t as ominous as the title makes it sound!! I’m writing this in part as a follow-up to my last personal update, and also to make some exciting announcements regarding Books & Cleverness, and its future.

I’ll start with my personal updates. I’ve been doing much better, and my AP exams are this week and next, and then I’m pretty much home free for the end of the school year! So after these next couple of weeks, I’ll most likely be blogging more, but I can’t make any promises. I’m really looking forward to summer, but while I was originally planning on blogging a ton, that will no longer be the case. Why? Well I’ve been accepted to a six week pre-college program basically as soon as school gets out for me. I don’t know as of yet how much free time I’ll have while I’m there, so again, I don’t want to make commitments about the blog. I am SO EXCITED about the program, though!

One thing I do want to announce is that mid-August, when I’m back home, I’m planning to revamp the blog! I’m planning on going self-hosted, custom domain name, pretty blog design, the whole shebang. I am planning on using Ashley when it comes to hosting, themes, domains, etc., and Hazel for a beautiful custom blog design. I’ve already chatted with both and they are wonderful. I cannot wait to start revamping when August rolls around! (I know it’s kind of far in the future, but I really wanted to share the excitement. The blog will be about a year and a half old at that point, which I think is the perfect time to do this!)

I just wanted to post this little update so all of you know what will be happening around my corner of the internet in the coming months! 🙂 There are some fun posts that I have planned coming up in early May, as well!

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