Sunday, July 1, 2018

State of the ARC [2] & Weezer Concert

This is a new meme started over at Avalinah’s Books for tracking your ARC progress. I actually really love this idea and think it will help me better manage my current reads!

At the end of June 2018:
Legendary (Caraval, #2) by Stephanie Garber *Currently Reading (7/1/18)
The Unbinding of Mary Reade by Miriam McNamara
Tell Me No Lies (Follow Me Back, #2) by A.V. Geiger

Love Songs & Other Lies by Jessica Pennington
Ruthless Magic (Conspiracy of Magic, #1) by Megan Crewe
Where the Sea Takes Me (Sea, #2) by Heidi R. Kling 

These are the ARCs I didn't have a chance to read before their release date! I'll finish Legendary today (which I'm enjoying more than Caraval), and I plan on starting Ruthless Magic next. I only have two books to review for July, so I'm going to spend this month trying to catch up on what I've missed. Six books isn't too bad! It's totally doable. 

I didn't realize Tell Me No Lies was a sequel, and I'm not sure if it's a series that needs to be read in order... does anyone know? Can I read this one by itself, or do I need to track down the first book? I've been looking forward to Where the Sea Takes Me, because I feel like the first book (Where I Found You) left me with a lot of unanswered questions. However, the second book has a different setting, so I still might not get those answers.

Yesterday was my birthday! Jacob and I went to a Weezer concert! The Wombats and Pixies were the two bands that played before, and we had a blast. It's not often that he and I get to go out together without the kiddos. Weezer did a few covers (including Africa), and it's always fun to sing along to their original songs. My voice isn't all the way there today. I keep croaking in the middle of a sentence.

We had lawn seats for the show, but the best part... the food we ate beforehand. Austin has a lot of vegan restaurants, but we decided to try a vegan food truck! My mouth is watering just thinking about it. Jacob and I shared a Bacon Mac n' Cheese Burger (seitan bacon, plant patty, and cashew cheese), and a Street Taco. There were also fries, but honestly they couldn't compare to their delicious companions. #yum


I hope everyone had a good weekend! What are you reading right now? Anything I should add to my list? <3

53 comments:

  1. Sometimes I take books without realizing that it's a sequel as well. Sometimes it's ok, sometimes not

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    1. If it's the second book in a series, I like to read the first book first. Sometimes they're not easy to find, though. Do you always just read the book and see if it works?

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    2. You definitely have to read the first book to understand what's going on. Tell Me No Lies could get a bit confusing, especially in the beginning of the story because of how things ended in the first book. I'm currently reading it too and honestly, it's not holding me like the first one but it's still interesting. Happy belated bday. Sounds like you had a lot of fun. Enjoy your current reads!

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    3. Noted! Thanks! I hate that the second one isn't as awesome as the first, though. It's always a let down when you have higher expectations based on the first book. Glad it's still interesting! Thanks for the birthday love! We had a lot of fun this week and at the concert. It was a lovely way to start my last year in the 20s. ;)

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  2. That burger sounds good. I haven't eaten much vegan food so I really don't know what most of it tastes like.

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    1. It tasted like happiness on a bun, haha! We've been vegan for nearly 10 years now, and we've had both the good and the bad. It's about finding what you like, and what substitutions/variations work for you. Everyone is different. Like me... I'm not a huge fan of plain seitan. It's the texture, I think. However, my husband can make Ruben's with seitan and it's delicious! I can also make a pretty good seitan steak now, but it took time for me to get the recipe right.

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  3. Legendary is the only book I've heard of that you listed, and I actually plan to read Caraval this month.

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    1. I hope you like it! I was really frustrated with the main character, Scarlett. It's because I thought she made horrible decisions throughout the book, but some people can overlook that. I did love the world and the idea of Caraval, which is why I'm reading Legendary. It's also from Tella's perspective, which is really different.

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    2. I hope you like it better then! Thanks for the heads-up! :)

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    3. Let me know if you figure out who Legend is before I do! ;)

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  4. Glad to hear you're enjoying Legendary more than Caraval. I wasn't crazy about Caraval, but I just got Legendary from the library.

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    1. I love the idea of Fates and Decks of Destiny! Fortune telling, curses, and mystical beings are also really great additions to the story. I still have no idea who Legend is, and I'm about 75% finished with the book. I need someone to tell me SOON.

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  5. I would definitely recommend reading Follow Me Back before diving into Tell Me No More Lies. I read Follow Me Back (gonna start the sequel soon) and it ends on such a crazy cliffhanger that you NEEEDD to read it first.

    And how are you liking Legendary? A lot of people seem to like it more than the first.

    AND HAPPY BELATED BIRTHDAY!!!

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    1. Thanks! It was a wonderful birthday. <3

      Okay, so definitely read Follow Me back first. I'll check and see if my library has a copy. I'm glad I already have the second book if it ends with a crazy cliffhanger--hate those! Maybe we can buddy read the sequel??

      I'm enjoying Legendary more than Caraval! I didn't like Scarlett from the first book one bad decision after another), and Tella is more likable. I wanted to read Legendary for the world. I love the setting and the games! It's so fun trying to figure everything out.

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  6. You have to read Follow Me Back first. It ended in a cliffy, and Tell Me No Lies picks up right after that. I know they have the first book on Hoopla, if your library gives you access to that. Happy Birthday!!! A show is a fun way to celebrate. I saw The Pixies back in 1989 (I am very old). They are one of my favorite bands.

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    1. Perfect! Thanks! I'll read this series in order, and I'm happy to avoid the cliffhanger, lol. They're not my favorite thing! I use OverDrive through my library, so I'll see if they have a copy--an audiobook would be ideal, because I could squeeze that in sooner.

      Thanks for the birthday wishes! I think my husband said the woman singing with them was not originally in the band... that she is newish because the other woman didn't want to get the band back together. Right? It was so fun to watch! I was familiar with a few of their songs.

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  7. Looks like you had a lovely birthday!! :) I LOVE Weezer's cover of Africa! I heard that on the radio just yesterday!

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    1. I'm so happy they played their version at the concert! It was amazing hearing it live!

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  8. 6 books is totally doable. I still need to read Caraval. I’m so behind.

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    1. I tell myself it's doable, but then... haha! I'm enjoying Legendary more than Caraval, so don't get discouraged if Scarlett makes you crazy.

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  9. Yes, that does sound like a helpful way to spur you on to finish the older ARCs. You made me curious so I went back to count my own and there are four. I should be able to get caught up, too.
    Fun that you had a kidless date to the concert and found some good eats with the beats, too. :)

    Have a great week, Lindsi!

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    1. It's really helped me focus on which books I need to read by when, and which books I need to catch up on! Four is an amazing number! You can do that!

      I enjoyed the date night with my husband, but we both missed the kids like crazy! We kept talking to random people about them, checking in with my in-laws to see how they were doing, and generally wishing they could be there too.

      The food was delicious and the music was great!

      Thanks, Sophia! I hope you're week is wonderful. <3

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  10. Happy birthday! I've never heard of those other bands, but I do like some Weezer songs! I've never been to concerts outdoors like that with lawn seats, but that sounds nice. And that's awesome you even found a vegan food truck! Hope you enjoy your books :-)

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    1. This was the first time I've sat on the lawn! People brought chairs, pillows, blankets, and then sat for the two opening bands (some people stood and danced), but once Weezer came out everyone was standing and dancing! It was tons of fun.

      I think the vegan food truck was the best part, lol. I'm going to have dreams about that burger.

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  11. Concerts are the best; I'm glad you had a fun time. I'd have loved to have heard Africa; their edition is so good!!

    -Lauren
    www.shootingstarsmag.net

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    1. I agree! They do an amazing job covering the song. I'm really glad they decided to play it last night! They did a few other covers, too.

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  12. Yum! I love street truck food, just had some on vacation (Korean beef tacos oh my gosh yummy- I try to avoid red meat but occasionally I splurge)! Sounds like an awesome concert. And happy birthday!

    Ruthless Magic looks great!

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    1. Thanks, Greg! Street truck food that's vegan is an odd thing to find, but Austin had quite a few options. I'm happy with what we chose! I'm glad you were able to find something equally yummy on your vacation! Sometimes food is the best part, lol.

      I'm starting it next! <3

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  13. The Unbinding of Mary Reade looks so good and this is the first I've heard of it! I also loved Legendary more than Caraval (although Caraval was a 5 star read for me too)! Good luck meeting your goals!

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    1. I felt the same way when I first came across The Unbinding of Mary Reade! It's one I was eagerly anticipating, so I hate that I missed the release date. I'm trying really hard to squeeze it in sooner rather than later. <3

      I liked the story for Caraval, but Scarlett got on my nerves. I felt like she only made bad decisions, and she made them often. If she would have stopped to think things through rationally instead of impulsively, I think she would have had an easier time. I'm happy you loved it so much! I can't wait to finish Legendary. :)

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  14. Mmmm yummy burger!

    And ruthless magic looks really good. i can not wait for your review :D

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    1. It was sooo yummy! I want to go back just for the food, haha.

      I hope it's really good! I haven't seen any reviews for it, so I have zero expectations going in. <3

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  15. Happy Birthday! How fun! I love Weezer. They were one of my first concerts in ... 1996, I think. Mmmm that food!

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    1. Thanks! It was amazing and fun! I didn't even care that we were so far back. We were still able to enjoy the music and see the shenanigans onstage. Weezer really gets crazy with set changes, swapping out their clothes, and riding around through the crowd. The FOOD WAS GOOD. ;)

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  16. Happy Birthday! We've visited Austin a couple of times and had a fab time. Those vegan burgers look amazing :-)

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    1. There's always something to do in Austin! When we got home we started looking for events/activities for the kids. There's a dinosaur park our son would love, a few hands-on museums, and like a 3-acre swimming pool. It's not a far drive from where we are, so we might start visiting for frequently (...just for the food, too).

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  17. Happy belated birthday Lindsi! The concert sounds awesome.
    I hope that you will like Ruthless Magic better than I did. :)

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    1. Thanks! It was a blast! <3

      Ohh, bummer! I haven't read any reviews, so I have no idea what to expect. I'm sorry it didn't work for you!

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  18. Happy birthday!! A Weezer concert sounds cool-I used to love them!

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    1. Have you heard any of their new stuff, or their cover of Africa? It was sooo good! Thanks for the birthday love! <3

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  19. Ruthless Magic looks cool! Happy Birthday!! Sounds like you had a fun weekend!

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    1. We had a blast! Jacob was also off all week, and it was so nice having him home. We went out and did a ton of stuff as a family. It's also lovely having another pair of hands at home with the three crazies I deal with daily, haha. ;)

      I'm excited to start Ruthless Magic!

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  20. Happy belated birthday! I'm glad you had fun at the concert and oh man does that burger look good!

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    1. Thanks! The burger was DELICOIUS. Like, moan-with-food-in-your-mouth DELICIOUS.

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  21. I’ve heard a lot of people say they like Legendary better than Caraval. Hope it ended well! ANd happy belated birthday!! I embarrassed to say that I’m not totally sure who Weezer is. LOL I know of the name but I couldn’t name a single song. (Update: I just looked them up and I do know the Buddy Holly song. Go me! LOL) And that’s a pretty decadent looking burger. *drools*

    Tanya @ Girl Plus Books
    Http://girlplusbooks.blogspot.com

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    1. I'm still not finished with Caraval (I knooooow… it's taking me forever to get through it). It's not the book's fault, I've just been busy or feel like listening to my audiobook instead. I'm definitely going to finish it tonight and review it for tomorrow.

      Thank you! The Weezer concert was a lot of fun. Walking 5 miles from our parking spot... not so much, lol. I love the Buddy Holly song! <3

      I literally drooled all over that burger, so it's okay. ;)

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  22. Sounds like you had a great birthday! I've been hearing the Africa cover on the radio and they said it came about because a girl on twitter requested it and it gained momentum until they gave in and recorded it lol

    I picked up Love Songs & Other Lies at ALA.

    Karen @ For What It's Worth

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    1. Ohhh, I just assumed they wanted to do a cover of Africa. It's crazy that one person's request on Twitter gained enough attention to make it happen! I think Weezer did a music video with a lot of YouTubers once... like Chocolate Rain... maybe? I can't remember, but it sounds familiar, lol.

      Nice! I hope I'm able to get to it soon! <3

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  23. Happy Birthday Lindsi! I totally understand the lack of time with Hubby when you have kids, we try and make Monday our day when our son is at preschool.

    I'm looking forward to reading Legendary. I didn't love Caraval but I did enjoy it.

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    1. It's important to make time for each other! We've been trying to do that more, but it's not always easy.

      I felt the same way... I didn't love Caraval or Legendary, but I did enjoy them. I still want to read the next book to see how everything ends.

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  24. Happy birthday my darling girl! I'm so glad you had such a wonderful time, it sounded so laid back and chilled. I've heard the cover of Africa that they play and really loved it as well, more than the original. That macaroni, cheese and bacon burger looks absolutely delicious! Not many places in my local area have much variety when it comes to vegan dishes unless you eat at vegan specific shops. I wouldn't mind having vegan days just to be able to eat something lighter before committing to any lifestyle changes. I just finished Legendary and I was SHOCKED I TELL YOU, SHOCKED! I loved Caraval and was a little hesitant about legendary because sequels hardly ever live up to expectations but it was brilliant. I'm dying to know what you think of it! ♥♥♥

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    1. It was super chill, haha! I wish there were more vegan places around, but I'm happy that more are starting to pop up (or at least have vegan options). When we decided to go vegan it was a process... we cut out all red meat, chicken, and pork, then we cut out fish and seafood, and then we cut out dairy, honey, and anything else. It took about a year, but we've been happier because of it. <3

      I don't know if Legendary shocked me, but that could be because my review copy gave away who Legend was long before they revealed themselves. I had my suspicions about the ending when things didn't start wrapping up when I was 90% finished. It was an interesting story, and I always enjoy the world, but I feel like something is missing... I think it's because I don't feel connected to any of the characters, and I hate that there are so many secrets. I know that secrecy is part of the game, but I felt like there were too many, you know? Most are never answered or even addressed. I'm so happy you loved it! I think I'm the black sheep on this one. ;)

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