Book hauls, Sunday post

[August wrapup] I AM BACK!!! And I Can’t Wait To Blog Again August Stats Fever 2018

Hi everyone. I am finally back! After a month or being here and there and everywhere… I am finally home! Those who have been following my Instagram stories, might have seen some of the highlights from London. Those who haven’t… Will just have to take my word on it – it was big, beautiful, terrifying but interesting, and all that. (But if you want to see those highlights, I have made a story summary on my profile.) And also, wow, I can’t believe I gained weight. I have struggled to gain even one kilo for two years in Lithuania. Two weeks in Britain? 3 kilos. I am floored! I guess I’m happy I’ve finally gained, but I’m also surprised by the local diet (we ate at our family’s house and at restaurants, mostly. So we didn’t cook what we’re used to.) Despite being tiring (and financially quite shocking… oh boy…), the trip was also amazing and refreshing. But I’ve missed my blog, and I’ve also missed my job. I’ve also just missed home, my family and my bed, obviously!

A GIF of Dorothy from the old Wizard of Oz movie, saying “There’s no place like home”

Now let me sum up August!

  • you could say I beat my lifelong fear of traveling (or at least stared it right into the eyes)
  • I had my first flight, my first tube ride, and a lot of other such things
  • I changed my Instagram theme to something I finally like!
  • I… turned 30?
  • I also finished reading 99 books. Which means I’m hitting 100 soon. My goal was 52 😂
  • I hauled 5 books in London which were ones I couldn’t get here
  • And I brought back some old books boyfriend had, mostly Harry Potters and some other stuff. I am conveniently not putting them on my haul and TBR because they’re boyfriend’s *see what I did there*
  • I met the entirety of boyfriends family, including the extended one, minus one grandma, basically. They were cool.
  • Basically, it was a really crazy month, but mostly in a good way!

Now let me tell you what I’ve been reading. It’s just that when you visit a place AND THERE ARE BOOKS, you won’t just simply…. Not read them. Or not try to cram as many as possible into your head, cause obviously… You’ll be away, and then you won’t be able to read them. No matter that your own books are crying on your TBR. That’s just something you do. And that’s what happened to me. So you’ll find I have read a lot during my trip, and they’re pretty random – from Stephen King to children’s books! #NoRegrets tho.

~ 5-Star Miracle Books Read ~

The Town in Bloom by Dodie Smith Sleep, Merel, Sleep by Silke Stein Going Widdershins by Sherrye Cohn Emotions Explained with Buff Dudes: Owlturd Comix by Andrew Tsyaston

The Town in Bloom was a soothing, playful and wonderful book. Basically, I will love anything by Dodie Smith, I think! I will be publishing the review in the next post. Sleep, Merel, Sleep was just about the perfect middle grade book. I greatly enjoyed it and I think I’ll be reading it again. Review coming up in a few weeks. now, Going Widdershins… It’s hard to even start talking about this hidden gem. I will be posting a review sometime in September, and we’ll talk then, but let me just say that this book could make you cry with how genuine it is when it talks about oppresion and the sad history of women’s life and their struggle to get to where we are now. I am sure I will be reading this book again. It was just perfect. And, for a lighter note – Emotions Explained with Buff Dudes was a super quick, super funny and super relatable read. It’s not out till a few months later, so you can still grab your review copy on NetGalley!

~ 4-Star Steady Good Books Read ~

Playing to the Gods: Sarah Bernhardt, Eleonora Duse, and the Rivalry that Changed Acting Forever by Peter Rader  Wildwood (Wildwood Chronicles #1) by Colin Meloy, Carson Ellis (Illustrations) Revival by Stephen King

Read along with Dodie Smith’s Town in Bloom (which is about the theatre)Playing to the Gods was well placed in my TBR. Learning the histories of these two actresses who shaped the way we understand acting now was very interesting. Written in an easy to read way, definitely recommended! Wildwood was one of the middle grade titles I read, while in England – and it’s got everything that a good middle grade has to have! Another thing is that it has two protagonists – a girl and a boy, so making the adventure accessible to more kids. It was a great read and I can’t wait to get the sequel. I also read Stephen King’s Revival while in England, and it’s been a while that I’ve read anything by him. Enjoyable, dark, and quite unexpectedly Lovecraftian, by the very end! Some people might find this book dragging and you might be let down by the ending, after all that buildup – but it was still an enjoyable read for me. Will be reviewing soon.

~ Okay Books Read ~

Tell Me You're Mine by Elisabeth Norebäck A Beautiful Place to Die by Samuel Bigglesworth Dragons at Crumbling Castle (Children's Circle Stories #1) by Terry Pratchett The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson, Axel Scheffler (Illustrator) The Pit Stop: This Stop Could be Life or Death by Carmen DeSousa

All of these books are vastly different – both in terms of topic, as well as audience. So it wasn’t easy to rate them. Tell Me You’re Mine was a DNF around the middle, because it proved to be too triggering for me. Otherwise, it’s a good book – if you go for psychological thrillers. Just not for me! A Beautiful Place to Die was an interesting collection of short stories that are interweaved together, but for me, it lacked the spark. Dragons at Crumbling Castle and The Gruffalo are amazing children’s books, which is why they’re getting four stars from me, and not three – but they’re in the ‘okay’ books category simply because while they’re amazing for kids, I’m not a young child anymore and I see them differently. Definitely recommended for kids though, both of those! And The Pit Stop was an old freebie short story, lying around on my Kindle. It was an alright story, but I didn’t enjoy it all that much. Three stars!

~ Totally Meh Books Read ~

Canopy Harvest by Woody Hayday

I really tried with this one, and you know I love scifi… But I very honestly don’t understand why the reviews for Canopy Harvest are so good. It was one of the most boring books that I’ve ever read.

~ The Stats! ~

august stats fever 2018

So I’m hitting 100 books soon! And #BeattheBacklist is also going well. I didn’t expect to do this well this year!

~ On The Blog In August ~

So last month I was more or less away all the time, so most of my posts were scheduled in advance and I didn’t reply to comments much or participate otherwise. I’m sorry about that, and I miss you all! Just in case you missed my posts because I wasn’t visiting yours, here’s what I posted:

 erotic stories for punjabi widows  rogue protocol

   fated sky

#NewBloggersWelcome   real quanta

killing it   spaceship next door

caseroom   

~ Books Hauled ~

Young Jane Young City of Ghosts The Hate U Give Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine The Hanging Tree (Peter Grant #6)
Emotions Explained with Buff Dudes: Owlturd Comix The Psychology of Time Travel The Extremely Inconvenient Adventures of Bronte Mettlestone The Oracle Year A Beautiful Place to Die

The first five are my London haul! Would you BELIEVE that I got City of Ghosts for £2.50?? I couldn’t either! I believe I might have said something obscene when I grabbed it off the shelf (snatched would be the correct term here, I believe), because the girl right next to me looked at me all weird 😂 I also got Young Jane Young really cheap from there, and The Hanging Tree didn’t cost so much at another shop. I got Eleanor Oliphant and THUG for the regular price at the airport. I also found a beautiful copy of The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock at the thrift shop (stained pages!) but I didn’t grab it because it was big, I had airport weight restrictions and I have already read it. But I still feel slightly bad for not grabbing it!

~ Next Week ~

Next week I have some nice posts planned – a review of The Town in Bloom and Playing to the Gods, both books I loved, about women and the theatre. Both recommended! And I also have a discussion post lined up, one on a slightly controversial topic with a very heartfelt opinion and one that was close to my heart and with some painful revelations – Why authors should take EXTRA CARE when writing enemies to lovers. I hope you’ll visit to read it!

 town in bloom playing to the gods  enemies to lovers

As usual, I’m linking up with Caffeinated Reviewer and the Sunday post, also with Stacking the Shelves at Tynga’s Reviews and Feed Your Fiction Addiction.

And that’s it for my August! What about you? Share your links with me in the comments!

I’m Evelina and I try to blog about books that matter, with a bit of fun there too! Disability and equality will be topics you see a lot, but there’s also a lot of scifi, fantasy and… GIFs. I’m also the proud founder of #ARCsAnonymous.

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CG @ Paper Fury
Guest
Ahhh I’m so glad you had a good trip!! And also go you, scheduling posts and being all organised! I was also hiatusing most of August, but I like…just flat out vanished. But my break was good too! And I’ve come back with some ideas and eep, I missed blogging. Also omg isn’t home the best thing ever?! I LOVE MY BED. I think it’s a rule that when a bookworm goes travelling they come back with more books than they left with. Glad you had so many excellent reads this month too! And SuPER curious for your discussion on… Read more »
Tammy @ Books, Bones & Buffy
Guest

I love England! So glad you had a good time. And I remember buying a lot of books when I went because they were cool editions I’d never seen before. Welcome back!

Grace @ Rebel Mommy Book Blog
Guest

Glad you had a good time away. I really want to go to London. But yes it is always nice to be back home. Great job on kicking your goals but with 99 books already. Looks like you hauled some great books! I really enjoyed Young Jane Young, THUG, and Eleanor. Have a great week!

Sam@WLABB
Guest
The excitement you used describing your trip is awesome. I liked London a lot, but it had a real NY feel to it, and since that’s where I grew up, I felt like I was at home. Your wonder and joy brought a smile to my face. I enjoyed Young Jane Young. I have DNFed Eleanor Oliphant, but I think it’s me and not the book. I know it has to get less sad and depressing, because all the reviews say so, but I keep getting hung up and it makes me to sad to go on. I hope it… Read more »
Nicci @ Sunny Buzzy Books
Guest

Glad you had a great time on your travels! London and I have a love/hate relationship, lol.

Deb Nance at Readerbuzz
Guest

Happy birthday, congrats on the almost-100 mark, and welcome back to blogging! You have been missed.

Laurel-Rain Snow
Guest

How wonderful that you had a great time on your trip…I don’t especially like the traveling part…just enjoy being in new places.

Welcome back, and thanks for sharing. Thanks for visiting my blog.

Meaghan @ Words Gremlin
Guest

Oh wow, it sounds like you had a fantastic trip (and got City of Ghosts so cheap omg????)! It also looks like you got through some excellent books.

Welcome back, and happy birthday!!

Aj @ Read All The Things!
Guest

I’m glad you had a good trip! I’d love to visit London someday, but I definitely can’t afford it. I hope I like Revival as much as you did because I just found a cheap used copy. I haven’t read any King yet this year. Have a great September!

vvb
Guest

Super! sounds like you had a wonderful trip. Welcome back and hope September reading goes well.

Literary Feline
Guest

I am so glad you are back! It sounds like you had an interesting and amazing time in London and during the entire month in August. You’ve been so busy! Happy belated birthday! I won’t even tell you how old I will be turning this month. LOL Your new books all look great. That cover for The Psychology of Time Travel is gorgeous. I am glad you had such good reading month. I hope you have a wonderful September, Evelina.

Marie @ Drizzle & Hurricane Books
Guest

I’m so happy you had such a fantastic time on your trip! London is one of my favorite places ever, I’m so happy you had such a great time there – and found cheap books like whaaaaaaat that’s SO GREAT ahhhh 😀
Welcome back! I hope you’ll settle back into the blogging and life routine well 🙂 <3

Lulu @ Roadside Reader
Guest

Emotions Explained with Buff Dudes sounds like so much fun! Also sounds like you had an amazing time in London

Cee Arr
Guest

Ha, I’m glad you had a good month! 🙂 <3

sjhigbee
Guest

I am so glad you enjoyed your trip to London. And that you managed to get hold of some books, as well. You were really lucky with the weather – weren’t you?? I know that some parts of the country have had a lot more rain than we have… Have a great week back at home:))

Sophie
Guest

Welcome back Evelina! I love London but did not gain weight while there LOL. For someone away from home you did manage to have a great blogging month! Happy Sunday (and I can’t wait for you advices to authors LOL)

Greg
Guest

Welcome back! I don’t know where I was but I guess I didn’t realize you were in Britain for two weeks. Glad it was a great trip! I’d love to go there someday. And happy 30th !!!!

Wildwood looks fun, I’ve seen that one before and it appealed to me but I never ended up getting it.

Looks like you hauled some good stuff too. 🙂

Yvonne
Guest

Welcome back! Your trip sounds wonderful! I love traveling. Hope you have a great week!

Jackie Briere
Guest

Hi, I am glad you had a wonderful trip, and those UK book covers are fantastic!

Jacqueline @bluejaybooks
Guest

Wow, congrats on reading 99 books <3 I don't think I've read more than 70 something in one year before.

Ironically, I just visited London a little over a month ago myself. Unfortunately, I didn't buy any books 🙁 While part of me regrets this, I'm also proud of myself for resisting the urge 🙂 Glad you seem to have had a good time in London!

Katisha @ Reel Literature
Guest

Welcome back! I’m glad you were able to stare your travel fears in the face, and it’s even better that your trip was a positive experience! Congrats on killing those reading goals and that pretty nice book haul you got there!

I did a little traveling during August too, but it was just a road trip to North Carolina for a wedding.

Jovita
Guest

Happy to see you back. Sounds like you had a wonderful time in London. I would love to visit one day. I’m sure you’re happy to be home again. Happy belated Birthday, hopefully you did something special while in London. Wonderful book haul, I hope you enjoy them all. Happy September!

Karla Strand
Guest

What a month! Wowsers, that is a lot of firsts but I hope you are super proud of yourself! Hoping your September is calmer but just as amazing 😀

Kat @ Novels & Waffles
Guest

Welcome back! Congrats on being able to stare your fear of traveling in the face! It can be freaky to go new places, huh? Also, isn’t is so difficult to find a theme on instagram? I feel like I keep changing mine around and am yet to be completely satisfied. But I am really glad you found something you like! I hope you have a wonderful week ahead of you!

Annemieke
Guest

Glad to hear you had a great trip! And happy belated birthday. For being away so much you still read a great amount of books!

Tanya @ Girl Plus Books
Guest
Glad your trip was such a success… even though it’s always a relief to return home back to the familiar. We went to London several years ago and I remember being a bit taken aback by the cost of everything. Not an inexpensive place to visit/live! I set my GoodReads goal fairly low, as well – at 50 books. And as of today I’m at 49. 🙂 I typically set it at 75-100 but I decided to remove all pressure dealing with reading this year. That meant a lower goal, fewer ARC’s, etc. I’m back to reading for sheer pleasure.… Read more »
Carolina
Guest

Cngrats for beating your fear of travelling! I’m really happy for you! Seems like you had a great reading month too! I hope September will be even better for you!

Satia
Guest

Hi, I am glad you enjoyed the UK. LOL about putting on weight. People are quite friendly here and it is always nice to hear somebody has enjoyed their trip to the UK. Well done about beating your fear of travelling. I have only just joined the blogging community (a book blog but not much on there yet!). xx

Faith @suckerforcoffe
Guest

I was following your insta stories and I loved them! I’m glad you had a wonderful trip and welcome back!!
August was a transitioning month for me. I finally got my own domain and at the moment I am trying to redesign my blog but I love how it looks so far. I am also trying to often put up posts as I build a schedule and become more consistent.
I think I have told you this before but I love how organised you are and the space that is your blog. Keep on. 🙂

Andreea
Guest

Welcome back! So glad you had an awesome time and conquered some fears at the same time – followed your insta stories and they were great!

Also, I do that!! Going someplace and reading all the books – I remembered one vacation I stayed up more than 48 hours (I was also younger) just to read all the books from the Goosebumps collection that the friend I was staying at had!! I regret nothing!

And, of course, no matter how great the vacation is, it’s always so good to be back in your bed!

And yay for almost 100 books!

Norrie
Guest

Congrats on the weight gain? 🙂 I kinda have the opposite problem. As in I need to be super careful not to gain any. All these take away foods are defo not helping 😀

Also, happy birthday!! <3

Sounds like you had an awesome and adventurous month!

Danielle Hammelef
Guest

London sounds fabulous! It’s a destination I hope to get to someday too. My neighbors are from England and share so many stories about growing up there and foods they enjoy. Plus I think about all the book stores!

Kaleena @ Reader Voracious
Guest

Happy birthday again, love, and I am so glad you had a wonderful trip!!! You got some amazing reads in as well which is great. Welcome back and happy reading!

Caro @ bookcheshirecat
Guest

I’m happy to hear that you had such a great time during your trip and also got to buy a few books that you wouldn’t have gotten otherwise! ♥ 🙂 I’m very much looking forward to your enemies-to-lovers post, as it has me very intrigued!

Dani @ Perspective of a Writer
Guest

Sounds like all kinds of fun and the instagram story was too cute!! I’m so glad you enjoyed Erotic Stories as that book had been recommended to me too. And a Stephen King book!! Fun… I’m doing a prompt for Stephen King characters but I was told several of my participants have never seen anything movie or read a book with one of his characters >.< hahhhaahha I thought I was being so smart too. Glad I wasn't crazy!! Someone does read his books.

Carole @ Carole's Random Life in Books
Guest

It sounds like you had a fantastic trip! Traveling is always nice but coming home is also nice. I have never left the country but your trip sounds like something I would love. It would be interesting just to see such a different enviroment. Have a great September!

Jenn @ Bound to Writing
Guest

I loved watching your Instagram stories! I’m glad you had a great trip! Coming home after a long trip and being in your own bed again is seriously the best!

Yvo @ It's All About Books
Guest

Looks like you had a wonderful month! And what a haul as well… You got City Of Ghosts so cheap! o.O And two of my favorites are on there: THUG and Eleanor Oliphant. I hope you’ll have a wonderful September!

Sim @ Flipping Through the Pages
Guest
I am so glad you had such an amazing time in London 🙂 And wow girl, you can actually read while traveling? I certainly can’t do that 😛 So happy to know that the boyfriend’s family was all nice and you enjoyed your first flight? That is something to remember always. Yay, you got THUG finally. I can’t wait for you to read it. And that cover is totally new to me. Also, you got Eleanor! Have you already read it? If not, we can plan for buddy read? Wow, 99 books! You are doing really great. I just completed… Read more »
Olivia-Savannah Roach
Guest

So glad you were able to enjoy your time in London and face that fear of traveling! You rock, girl! Also, I totally understand about gaining weight in Britain if you stuck to the local diet 😛 It sounds like you had a great time and I hope falling back into the routine of being home works well for you. I love your haul! I recently got Eleanor Oliphant too and really can’t wait to read it. I also really want to read The Hate U Give! Enjoy them all x

My recent post: https://oliviascatastrophe.com/2018/09/august-wrap-up-2018/

rasya
Guest

Welcome back! It’s so easy to put on weight when you’re travelling lol. I think I put around 3 kgs when I went to Seoul but who could blame me because all the food is delicious.

And I couldn’t believe that you’re 30! You look younger than you are. Happy birthday, anwway.

lauren
Guest

im so glad you had a great time travelling, it must be awesom eot beback home 🙂

ShootingStarsMag
Guest

Welcome back! I’m glad you had a great time and got to meet so many of your boyfriend’s family. I went to London two years ago and I loved it. It was the first time I’d been overseas, and I’m not a huge plane fan, but it was worth it and I’d love to go back. But yeah, it can be pricey. hah Yay for all the fun books you got. I really need City of Ghosts (that price is amazing!!!)

-Lauren

Jackie B @ Death by Tsundoku
Guest

OHMYGOSH. Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine is one of my favoritest books of all time. OF ALL TIME. I cannot wait for you to tell me what you think!

I’m glad you’re back. It was a crazy month for you! Lots of firsts and a schedule which was all over the place. Will you be writing a post about your time in the UK? I’d love to hear details! Also— what sorts of food were you eating on vacation?! Congrats on gaining 3 kilos!!

herding cats
Guest

Well that’s an exciting month for sure! Happy birthday and yay for fun travels!

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[…] Evelina @ Avalinah’s Books […]

Northwoman
Guest

Glad you’re back. It looks like fun and personal growth, along with great books for the month. Anne – Books of My Heart

Anastasia
Guest

Gosh happy for you for London and all the adventures and beating your fears you go girl And wheeeeeeyyy 100 books!

Tânia@MyLovelySecret
Guest
I’m so happy you had such a great trip. I only visited London once for an English advanced course, but I hope to return some day – I need to visit all those bookshops with books at bargain prices. <3 Also, you've read 99 books?! How do you do that?! Did you make a kind of Faustian deal with the book devil? =P I wish I could read so much so fast because I've a pile of books I must read for my thesis (reason why I've been MIA around the blogosphere) and I just can't make a dent on… Read more »
Donna
Guest

I loved The Fated Sky. See what I read in August at Girl Who Reads