Miranda’s May Reading Wrap Up

We’re into June, so it’s time to share my reading journal spread and stats!

For May, the theme I went with centered around the Norse Goddess of Constancy and Compassion, Sigyn. In the myths, she’s Loki’s second wife and mother to two of his children, Narvi and Vali. I’m more or less a devotee of hers, so I chose to depict her out in the sun and flowers, away from the cave where she joined Loki in his punishment.

The lyric is from Florence and the Machine’s “Heavy in Your Arms”, and my shaky attempt at an ampersand. Purple and blue are colors I associate with Sigyn, as well as keys and flowers, so those are represented here.

In May, I read 14 books amounting to 1,849 pages, and listened to 14 audiobooks, amounting to 7,455 minutes. My favorite book of May was “The Girls I’ve Been” by Tess Sharpe, and I didn’t finish 2 books. I read a lot of fantasy, a number of graphic novels, some memoirs and non-fiction, and romance. The average rating was 3.2. So, pretty normal, so far.

This is an idea I shamelessly stole from a friend. On the calendar, you use washi tape to mark how long it took you to finish a book. Since I was finishing audiobooks in a day, or sometimes I read a graphic novel in a day, I also used stickers to mark a finished book. (This is actually missing a bit of tape and stickers in the fourth week, but wev.) We also have more decoration for things I associate with Sigyn; a deer, flowers, purples and blues. I basically just threw everything at this spread.

Last but not least, my mood tracker. I decided to try making my own this month, and I’m more or less content with how it turned out. I don’t draw flowers very often, so I’m not great at them. On the other side, I put my key (and yes, I put “productive” down twice by accident; I shortened up my options for June’s tracker) and some more decoration.

So, that’s it for me this month! June’s theme is probably easy to guess. Let’s just say… it’s very colorful.

Miranda’s March Reading Wrap-Up

( A little late, but hey!)

March has come and gone, so it’s time to share my monthly spread from my reading journal. For March, I went with a Mardi Gras theme, because Easter isn’t really that big a deal for me. I definitely put all the work into the drawing and, when I got to the actual stats spread, I was like “idk just throw whatever on there.” So, a little lazy on my part, but oh well!

I don’t think it comes through on the picture, but I used Archer & Olive’s Arcylograph metallic markers for the beads, then a mix of Tombow and Copic for the rest of the outfit and lady. I had some foil cardstock that I cut up into random triangles just to give it more metallic sheen.

Now for the stats! I read 21 books in March, a big step up from my awful February stat of 7 books, totaling 3,161 pages. I DNF’d one book, and my average rating was 3.0. Unfortunately at the end of March I started listening to a bunch of audiobooks but I didn’t really have anywhere to put that statistic on this spread, but I listened to 2,725 minutes of audiobooks in March.

All in all, not a bad reading month.

I decided not to do a spread for my best book of the month, and going forward, I’m only going to do them if I have a solid idea of what I want. I don’t really see the point in making a spread about a book unless I can put stuff on it that actually relates to the book, instead of just whatever I have lying around. Maybe it’s a weird way to think about it, I dunno.

Unfortunately I missed two days in March for my Read Every Day challenge, but I had good excuses! On the 21st I had a migraine, and the 26th, I just… didn’t read. Oh well. I think I’m still doing pretty well.

I also have a new sticker page!

All of these except for the Belle sticker were purchased from RedBubble:

I Heart Books” by renduh
Books sticker” by deepfuze
flowers growing from book” by andilynnf
Pink and Blue Floral Bookstack” by Emma Mildred Riggle
Cat Tarot stickers by Thiago Corrêa
Forest moon” by Laorel

And that’s it for my March reading journal spreads! What does your reading journal look like for March?

Reading Journal: February Spread

Playing a bit of catch up here by posting both of my monthly spreads for January and February this week.

I was a bit stuck on what to do as a theme for February. I didn’t want to do a Valentine’s Day theme, because… eh. So I racked my brain for a bit, and then I saw something on twitter called “Funguary.” People were drawing mushroom girls for something called Funguary, and I thought, “Yes. That. I want to do that.”

I only dabble in drawing, and my poor little fungus baby has a few mistakes. But I still think she’s cute.

I didn’t feel like drawing a whole bunch more, so I threw some mushrooms on there, then colored in the stats page with the colors from the theme. Then I used washi tape. A whole lot of washi tape. So much washi tape.

(Yes, I forgot to give my fungus baby some toes. I could go back and add some in, but… I could also not do that.)

Again, I’ve left space for when I add in the covers. I’ll get to it eventually! Promise!

(Narrator: She probably won’t.)

As for my favorite book of the month, The School for Good Mothers, I struggled a bit with making a spread for it. I used construction paper again and used a quote from the novel, because I liked it a lot. It was a sort of literary dystopian, light sci-fi novel. I don’t usually go for literary, but I really loved the world that was painted in this novel, as terrifying as it was. I’m still not 100% pleased with this, and I might play around with it some more.

And lastly, I have so many stickers I had to put in a new sticker spread. I think this is something I’ll keep doing, too, so I can use my stickers and keep them in a place where they won’t get damaged. A lot of these were bought off RedBubble. Since this is a spread kind of representing me, I have a few of my favorite things: Books, Alphonse Mucha art, Belle, a Tarot card, some cats, the moon, and a small golden key for my devotion to Sigyn, the Norse Goddess of Constancy and Compassion.

Have any bujo spreads for February? Lemme see!

Wishlist Wednesday (1)

Welcome to Wishlist Wednesday, where I share what books I’m excited to buy and read!

The Bone Maker by Sarah Beth Durst

Sarah Beth Durst is one of my favorite authors. Her concepts are always really cool and interesting, and her adult fantasy is great. I loved The Queens of Renthia series and I can’t wait to see what she does in The Bone Maker.

From award-winning author Sarah Beth Durst, a standalone epic fantasy set in a brand-new world of towering mountains and sparkling cities, in which a band of aging warriors have a second chance to defeat dark magic and avenge a haunting loss.

Twenty-five years ago, five heroes risked their lives to defeat the bone maker Eklor—a corrupt magician who created an inhuman army using animal bones. But victory came at a tragic price. Only four of the heroes survived. 

Since then, Kreya, the group’s leader, has exiled herself to a remote tower and devoted herself to one purpose: resurrecting her dead husband. But such a task requires both a cache of human bones and a sacrifice—for each day he lives, she will live one less.

She’d rather live one year with her husband than a hundred without him, but using human bones for magic is illegal in Vos. The dead are burned—as are any bone workers who violate the law. Yet Kreya knows where she can find the bones she needs: the battlefield where her husband and countless others lost their lives.

But defying the laws of the land exposes a terrible possibility. Maybe the dead don’t rest in peace after all.  

Five warriors—one broken, one gone soft, one pursuing a simple life, one stuck in the past, and one who should be dead. Their story should have been finished. But evil doesn’t stop just because someone once said, “the end.”

One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston

Like a good number of people, I loved McQuiston’s first novel Red, White and Royal Blue. If One Last Stop is anywhere near as good as that novel, this will be a treat.

From the New York Times bestselling author of Red, White & Royal Blue comes a new romantic comedy that puts a queer spin on Kate & Leopold.

A 23-year-old realises her subway crush is displaced from 1970’s Brooklyn, and she must do everything in her power to help her – and try not to fall in love with the girl lost in time – before it’s too late . . . 

The Witness for the Dead by Katherine Addison

The Goblin Emperor is still one of my favorite fantasy novels ever, and I can’t wait to return to the world Addison has created.

Katherine Addison returns at last to the world of The Goblin Emperor with this stand-alone sequel.

When the young half-goblin emperor Maia sought to learn who had killed his father and half-brothers, he turned to an obscure resident of his Court, a Prelate of Ulis and a Witness for the Dead. Thara Celehar found the truth, though it did him no good to discover it.

Now Celehar lives in the city of Amalo, far from the Court though not exactly in exile. He has not escaped from politics, but his position gives him the ability to serve the common people of the city, which is his preference. He lives modestly, but his decency and fundamental honesty will not permit him to live quietly. 

That’s it from me! What books are you looking forward to reading?

Meet the Mascot: Gus the Cat

When we began talking seriously about starting a book review blog together, the one place we stalled was the name. I’m not good at coming up with names for anything. We went through a few before Gina thought of of a picture we have of one of our cats, Gus: “What about The Red Hat Cat blog?”

Gus was born on June 26th, 2015, in a litter of six. He was the last to be born and the runt of the litter. He grew up to be the biggest of the pack! (And the fluffiest.) I named him and most of his siblings after Disney characters; Gus was named after the mouse in Cinderella.

Of all the cats I’ve known in my life so far, Gus is definitely the one whose personality comes close to the idea of a typical cat: He’s arrogant, self-absorbed, and selfish. There’s no malice in anything he does — he just assumes that if he wants something a certain way, then everyone must want it that way, too, because his way is perfect. Gina often says that Gus doesn’t consider himself a cat; he thinks of himself as Gus, and all other cats and humans as lesser Gusses.

His favorite toy is a straw. Any kind of straw, but he likes bright, colorful plastic ones best. He even knows how to play fetch with them! He doesn’t share well, though, and if you play with a straw in a way he considers “wrong”, you’ll get a look of distinct displeasure from him.

We’re not in the habit of dressing up our cats mainly because we like having all our fingers. But sometimes the urge strikes us, mainly when we find a cute outfit at Ross. When we saw the red hat in a store, we knew we had to get it and try it on our cats. As you can see in the picture, Gus was not amused. We don’t make him wear it… often.

As mascots go, we probably could have chosen a friendlier one. But Gus would probably think that of course he’s the natural choice for a mascot, because he’s Gus, and thus he is perfect. We won’t do anything to convince him otherwise, even if we could!