December 22, 2015

Currently Reading & Series Attempt?

With the holiday season upon us, what better way to spend quality time than to watch holiday movies, and read holiday books!?

Currently Reading:

My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories

My True Love Gave To Me

I was actually lucky enough to get this one sent to me, and I'm already three stories into it! My True Love Gave To Me includes a total of twelve short stories (each about 25 pages long), from twelve different authors. I've never read a collection of short stories, just because I didn't really think I would enjoy it. I love details, and history, and reasoning, and all kinds of other stuff! Which I just never assumed I would be getting enough of in short stories.

Also I get pretty attached to characters, wanting to know and hear more about them. With only 25 pages I just didn't think I would get enough out of the story to be satisfied.

When I was sent this one for review, I decided to give it a try. Last year I avoided Let It Snow, by John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle, but this year I was determined not to do the same thing.

The three stories I've read so far I really enjoyed. The first one I loved, and the second two were pretty good. So far, I'm surprised and have been proved completely wrong about all of my prior assumptions. I'm excited to continue reading the rest of the twelve stories, and can't wait to see what some of my favorite authors have in store!

Series Challenge:

For a very long time now, I've been facing this series...

I've purchased all of the books, and I've even purchased the spin off series as well. The series consists of six very large books.

I've been meaning to start this series for a very long time now, considering that I've owned all six books for well over two years. The series I'm talking about is...

City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments, #1)City of Ashes (The Mortal Instruments, #2)City of Glass (The Mortal Instruments, #3)
City of Fallen Angels (The Mortal Instruments, #4)City of Lost Souls (The Mortal Instruments, #5)City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments, #6)


Turning Pages is almost five years old, and I still haven't come around to The Mortal Instruments series! But looking at these huge books take up an entire shelf on my bookshelf, is extremely intimidating!

Everyone claims to love them, and they have great ratings on Goodreads. But I honestly think the commitment of six books is what's scaring me off. 

I've decided with twelve more days of break, I'm going to start reading The Mortal Instruments series. I honestly don't know how big of a dent I'll be able to make into the series, but I do hope to at least get started.

Have you guys read the entire series? Are you afraid of such a large reading commitment? Let me know if the comments!

December 20, 2015

Book Unhaul

Its the beginning of winter break, and my biggest goal for these next few weeks is to get everything cleaned out, organized and get rid of anything I don't need anymore. My plan is to go through my makeup, my skincare and hair products, my closet, and my bookshelf. Which means I have a lot of work ahead of me.

I decided the best place to start would be my bookshelf, and pick out books I, either don't want, won't be reading again, or just aren't interested in anymore. I didn't come up with too many books, but I did pull out 13 to sell to Half Price Books.

 : The Pledge Trilogy

The Pledge, by Kimberly Derting.
The Essence, by Kimberly Derting.
The Offering, by Kimberly Derting.

As some of you may know, Kimberly Derting is one of my favorite authors. Everything I've read from her I love. Including The Pledge trilogy as well as The Body Finder series; they're both amazing, and I would recommend them to anyone. You're probably confused as to why I would be getting rid of these then. Well, I enjoyed them, but they aren't my favorite books. With only one bookshelf now, I've decided I'm not going to keep any books that aren't my absolute favorite or books I know I will never read again (which is practically the same thing).

I just don't think I plan on reading them again, even though I enjoyed them. I don't want to waste space on my bookshelf to store something I know I will never pick up. That's why they're going, hopefully to someone who will love them!

The Wolves of Mercy Falls Series

Shiver, by Maggie Stiefvater.
Linger, by Maggie Stiefvater.
Forever, by Maggie Stiefvater.

Again, this was my favorite trilogy when I first started Turning Pages. I was into the whole "wolf" thing, and was craving stories similar to Twilight. It's been five years since then, and it just isn't what I'm into anymore. I haven't picked up these books since the first two or three times I read this trilogy, which was well over three years ago.

 : They've GOT to go!

Forgotten, by Cat Patrick.
Revived, by Cat Patrick.

One of these books was sent to me for review, I don't remember exactly which one, but one of them was. I enjoyed them, and I thought it was weird and mind boggling. I decided to pick up the second book, just because I really enjoyed the first one! But I haven't read them since, and honestly couldn't even tell you, right now off of the top of my head, what these books are about.

It's time for them to go as well..


The Good Neighbor, by Amy Sure Nathan.
52 Reasons to Hate My Father, by Jessica Brody.
Wild Cards, by Simone Elkeles.
Pretending to Dance, by Diane Chamberlain.
Bliss, by Shay Mitchell.

All of these books except for 52 Reasons To Hate My Father, were sent to me for review. I don't usually re-read review books, unless they become one of my favorite books, so they're usually books I like to pass along. I don't think it's right for me to keep them; they were sent to me to be reviewed and shared. If I kept them, I would feel like I'm preventing them from pursuing their purpose. Review books I feel should be shared.

52 Reasons To Hate My Father was a book I thought would fun and easy to read, so I picked it up for only a dollar. But as time went on, more and more books need reviewing, and there are a lot of other books I want to read, before I pick up this one. So I decided that this one also needs to go, so it'll be enjoyed by someone else. Not just sit on my shelf and collect dust.

So those are the 13 books I'm getting rid of. Probably even as soon as I have this post finished and live. I really like these "book unhauls"; I think they're really fun, and I'm interested in seeing why people get rid of which books. If you've recently unhauled books leave your link down below in the comments! I would love to see what you're getting rid of!

December 19, 2015

Book Review: All These Things I've Done

All These Things I've Done (Birthright, #1)

All These Things I've Done, by Gabrielle Zevin
Release Date: 5/8/12

"In 2083, chocolate and coffee are illegal, paper is hard to find, water is carefully rationed, and New York City is rife with crime and poverty. And yet, for Anya Balanchine, the sixteen-year-old daughter of the city's most notorious (and dead) crime boss, life is fairly routine. It consists of going to school, taking care of her siblings and her dying grandmother, trying to avoid falling in love with the new assistant D.A.'s son, and avoiding her loser ex-boyfriend. That is until her ex is accidentally poisoned by the chocolate her family manufactures and the police think she's to blame. Suddenly, Anya finds herself thrust unwillingly into the spotlight--at school, in the news, and most importantly, within her mafia family. "

All These Things I've Done was a book I've been dying to read, practically since it was released. Don't ask me why I didn't get around to it until now, because I honestly wouldn't have an answer for you. All These Things I've Done takes places in a futuristic world, where chocolate and caffeine are illegal, common household items are hard to get your hands on, and everything is rationed. 

I was excited to see what it would be like to live in a world where two my favorite things were illegal, and making phone calls was almost impossible. 

The story revolves around a sixteen year old girl, who is the oldest daughter of the notorious head of the Balanchine Chocolate Company. When she was only six years old her mother was accidentally killed, and her older brother's life changed forever. A few years later, her father was also murdered, which left her elderly grandmother to take care of Anya, and her two siblings. 

From there on, Anya is struggling her way through life; she's dealing with a relationship which only seems to revolve around her chocolate, she's taking care of her elderly grandmother, her little sister, and her disable older brother. Things become chaotic when her relationship ends, and the final chocolate bar she shares seems to have been poisoned. If Anya wasn't balancing enough on her plate, she now has to deal with these accusations of attempted murder, a boy who can't seem to get enough of her, and with her extended family and their chocolate business.

All These Things I've Done was truly an amazing book. I love Anya and the person she is. She started the book always quoting her father, staying hard and strong, and doing anything to keep her family safe. She ended the book the same way. She didn't let what happened to her change her. She also didn't let another teenage romance shift her character or what she truly believed in.

I really enjoyed this book, the story and it's characters. I do, however, have to say it wasn't what I was expecting. The story revolved entirely around Anya, her family's business and the consequences of working with illegal chocolate. But the story doesn't explain anything about the society that this all taking place in. We don't ever discover why chocolate was illegal, and we didn't ever find out why food and resources were rationed. We did get a few hints that the surrounding land seemed dried out, but we weren't told what happened. 

I guess when I heard about this book was expecting it to lean more towards the society aspect and how the world become the way it is. But All These Things I've Done actually leans more towards Anya and her family's business.

In no way am I saying I didn't enjoy this book, I'm actually saying the opposite. I still really enjoyed it, just in a different way than I was expecting. All These Things I've Done is only the first book in a trilogy, and I'm excited to finally get around to reading the next two books. Fingers crossed that we learn more about the society!

Have you read All These Things I've Done? What do you think?

December 17, 2015

Finals Are FINALLY Over!

Finals Are Over:

Finals, for me, were officially over last night! I spent the entire night before studying for the two final exams which I would have to endure, and somehow survive the next day. The first took place around noon, and the second took place around five thirty.

I was going to attempt to put up a review last night, but after four and a half hours of testing, and multiple hours in between of studying, there was just no way that was going to happen. I was brain dead by the end of the day. To do a little celebrating though, I went out to a local pizza place that I've been wanting to try for months now; picking up two pizzas to take home and try. I also stopped at the grocery store around the corner to pick up Joshua's favorite fruit (pineapple), and finally got home to celebrate with him.

We ate, we talked about my exams, we decorated the Christmas tree, and basically spent the rest of the night watching movies on Netflix.

It was a relaxing night to an EXTREMELY stressful day!

I woke up this morning, in the middle of a nightmare. This horrible nightmare where I completely forgot to study for exams, that I didn't even know they were coming up, and where I failed each and everyone of them.....

How Did I Do:

I feel pretty good about all three of my exams. I know there are some questions or problems that I probably got wrong, but I didn't leave a single one blank, and tried my absolute best. I studied as hard and as long as I could, and that's all that truly matters. But still, that dream scared the crap out of me in the morning!

I don't exactly know when scores will be released, but I do know professors have to turn them in before the end of next week. Fingers crossed that I did good!

The Plan Now:

The plan from here on out is to enjoy my time off. School starts again at the beginning of January, which means I only have two or three weeks of break.

I'm going to spend that time reading, and blogging. I'm going to celebrate the holidays with my family, friends and loved ones. I'm also going to do some serious cleaning, and organizing; my closet is crowded and crammed with clothes I don't wear.

I'm excited to spend time on myself, and just doing things I enjoy. I'm excited to give you guys some fun content, and hopefully a giveaway or two. I also want to read three to four books, just because I haven't gotten too many chances to just crack one open, and spend hours reading.

I hope you guys are just as pumped about this season as I am, and if you had final exams, I also hope you did AMAZING! I'll see you all in tomorrow's review of All These Things I've Done! Bye!

December 14, 2015

Christmas Gift Wrapping Haul!

Christmas is only eleven days away and with the struggle of finals week and finishing up the term, I haven't been able to get as much shopping and wrapping done as I had hoped. I'm procrastinating a little bit, simply based on the fact that my attention is focused towards school. Once finals are finally over, I will still have about a week to do any last minute gift shopping, wrapping and decorating!

All of which are some of my favorite things to do! The best part is seeing all the gifts you put some much thought and effort into, sitting beautifully under the sparkling tree. Don't you agree?

*that rhymed...*

I love watching Christmas hauls, and how people choose to wrap their gifts, and I figured maybe some of you do as well. So I decided to show you all, what I'm using and doing this year! Hopefully this will be somewhat helpful for some of you!



I usually prefer wrapping actual boxes, because they're just neater, and are easier to stack and arrange them under the tree. They have a ton of different sizes, and designs. I did buy a few designed ones last year during clearance sales, but I usually buy white ones from the dollar store.



When it comes to bags, I pick up a handful each year. I think it's more fun, especially for the kids to unwrap gifts. But sometimes things are just too big to put into boxes, or sometimes even too small. Again, I pick them up at the dollar store, usually in November, when they are just starting to display them. If you don't pick them up right away, all of the cute ones are gone.

Wrapping Paper:


Wrapping paper is the HOLY GRAIL for me. I love buying a ton of it, especially during after Christmas sales. You can get huge rolls for so cheap. I love the cute patterns, the glitter and anything reflective. It's absolutely crazy how many different types there are to choose from!

Tissue Paper:


Again, this is something I would purchase at the dollar store, because I usually need a lot of it. It goes into the gift bags, and it goes into each one of my boxes. I think it just adds a little bit more fun when opening gifts, especially if they have glitter, like the ones I have here.

Ribbons & Bows:


Ribbons and Bows are the frosting on the cake. I don't mind spending a bit more on either of these. One of the issues I face when purchasing cheap bows, is that they tend to continuously fall off. The ribbon, on the other hand, needs to make the perfect spiral when I run it against the scissors. I think they both just really spice up a gift, and you can get really creative with them too!

I'll probably post some pictures later of all of my wrapped gifts! But I would LOVE to see what you guys are using this year, and how you plan on wrapping your goodies! Please let me know in the comments!

December 11, 2015

Update: Blogging, Etsy & Everything Else.


As you can probably tell I went a few weeks without posting a single thing here on Turning Pages Co. There are two simple reasons for that. Those include that I was both, busy with school and just wasn't inspired to write anything. I'm still toying with the idea of what I want this blog to be. There are just so many things I want to share and talk about, and I don't want to have to hold myself back, because it "wouldn't match" my blog's "content".

Ultimately I've decided I'm going to write whatever my heart desires. If I want to write about books, I can do that. If I want to write about Christmas wrapping paper, I can do that. If I want to write about how badly my day is going, I can write about that too. I'm going to stop limiting myself, because ultimately I should be having fun running this blog.

With quite some time having gone by, and no real rhyme or reason behind what post goes up when, I've decided to come with a new "schedule". It isn't anything too serious, again due to the fact that I want to keep my blogging options open, but I did want to know when blog posts need to go up.

So as of right now, I'm blogging Monday through Friday, and taking the weekends off. I don't want to force myself to blog everyday, but I thought five days out of the week was a good number. I work with numbers all day at school, and learning how businesses run, so I figured blogging a little bit everyday, would allow my creative juices to flow a bit.


Etsy is something I've been dying to work on. Obviously I've been getting orders out on time, and completing all of those. But I really want to sit back down and design new merchandise. I'm thinking Christmas break will be the perfect time for that!

With Etsy, I'm also want to focus on taking out some old items, before I'm putting in the new. I don't want my shop to have more than a hundred items at a time. I really want to focus on having high quality and creative items, instead of worrying about quantity and getting up as much as I can.

Also I really want to rework my shipping costs and possibly have the ability provide my customers with tracking. Before I do that though, I'll have to head to the post office, and find out how much it would cost to track shipments in the US and outside of it. It's a whole process, so that'll be another thing I want to accomplish this break coming up.

Everything Else:

School has been a bit difficult. I'm doing really well in two of my three classes, but my third class is absolutely horrendous. The teacher is new this year, she doesn't seem to care too much about her students, but more about the fact that the university is offering her money to do research. She doesn't have an organized plan when it comes to teaching, and when she's solving problems, she is ALL over the board.

It's accounting, which is obviously a class required by my Accounting major, but I'm just not loving this class. I love the content, I love the organized, laid out, and repetitiveness that comes along with accounting, but this teacher is lacking all of those things. It's just difficult to come to class, when you know it's a waste of time, and you could be spending that time learning it yourself.

The only thing that's getting me through that class, and it's final exam is the thought that Christmas is just around the corner. AND I CAN'T WAIT! The first thing I'm doing next Thursday, after all of my exams are over, is set up our Christmas tree!

Another thing I quickly wanted to mention was making videos on youtube. As of right now, I won't be doing that. I really enjoy making videos, editing them, and re-watching them. But with finals coming up, I don't think I'll have enough time. I might start vlogging and providing video content again after finals week, because I absolutely love doing so!

That pretty much wraps everything up. It's all stuff I just really wanted to get off my chest, and let you all know. I hope you guys have an amazing weekend, and I'll see you in Monday's post!

December 09, 2015

What Am I Currently Reading?

In my last post I discussed with you how finals, basically are consuming my life right now. If I'm not studying for one class, I'm studying for another. If I'm not studying for either, I'm either sleeping, eating or attempting to squish in some blogging time.

So I don't know how much reading time I'll be able to get in during these next few days. Reading usually calms me down, and brings me joy in times of stress, so I'll probably do an hour or so of reading every night, in the hopes of going to be not a complete ball of stress and anxiety.

Right now I'm in the middle of reading the first book in the Birthright Trilogy, All These Things I've Done by Gabrielle Zevin. This trilogy has been on my shelf for a while now, so that's the main reason I decided to finally give this a read, but also, I wanted to know what kind of world bans chocolate and coffee?! They must be out of their minds, do you know what that would do to everyone in Washington state, where I live?

Washingtonians would attempt to over throw the government in the matter of hours...

All These Things I've Done (Birthright, #1)

Besides that I'm also in the middle of enjoying My True Love Gave To Me, which is a book filled with twelve holiday stories..I figured what better time then now?

With finals, and so much going on in school, I haven't really been feeling the holiday spirit just yet. It usually comes the day right after my last final, but I was thinking some holiday cheer would help me get through this tough time. My True Love Gave To Me seems to be exactly what I was looking for. Also a lot of amazing authors have contributed to this book, so I'm excited to see what all of the stories have in store for me!

My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories

Have you read All These Things I've Done? What about My True Love Gave To Me? What did you think?

Let me know!

December 08, 2015

Studying for Finals.

The holidays are finally upon us, lights are everywhere, Christmas trees are being set up, and tons of shopping is being done. I absolutely love the holidays, and the cozy feeling everyone has around this time of year. There is honestly no better feeling than coming in from the cold and rain, to change into festive pajamas, grab a cup of hot tea and read a good book. 

Who doesn't love just staying in bed, and watching holiday movies? Or baking Christmas cookies?

I know that I sure do!

It's the beginning of December and what better time to start doing all of those things?!

Well, not right now actually...

It's the beginning of December, and it's also the end of Autumn quarter for me. Which means papers are due, project and presentation dates are upon us, and finals week is just around the corner. Basically, I'm a ball of stress, trying to handle everything all at once, trying not to lose my mind, and trying to somewhat continue living on with my regular life....whilst studying harder than ever before.

Originally this was going to be a post, with a couple of useful studying tips, but than that quickly change. Who am I kidding? I don't know what I'm doing here. I'm just trying to get myself through the next week and half, hopefully by passing all of my classes.

So many bloggers and youtubers, have "Helpful Study Tips" but in all honesty they are pretty much the same thing. Highlight important things in the textbook..blah, make note cards, blah blah, & take a break occasionally blah blah blah.

We all know how to do those things; those are all given and so obvious.

Also I feel like giving studying tips is strange and hard to do. There are so many different courses, every class is different, and teachers provide different types of tools. You can't honestly give "Helpful Studying Tips", without them being completely generic.

If you want to know what I do to prepare myself for finals week, its pretty easy. I skim the chapters from the textbook (if the class has a textbook), I go over my class notes and from those create note cards (only if the exam will be conceptual), and I also work practice problems (if the class is mathematical). 

Besides that, my teacher provides office hours, so if I have any questions I can go there and get them answered. My school also provides tutors, workshops, and finals week study sessions, so I sometimes attend those as well.

If I'm really lucky, professors will even layout the exam for us, provide a study guide to follow, or even hand out practice exams. Most professiors will also have a review session during the last class before finals, but some also don't.

My two tips for studying for finals, is to take advantage of everything, and to continue pushing through, no matter how hard things seem. Go to office hours, attend study sessions, meet with a few classmates and go over the material. Take advantage of all of those resources, they are incredibly helpful!

We all know how difficult and stressful finals week can be, but just keep pushing through, it's only a few days. Take a few deep breaths, and organize yourself. Layout everything out, and find a starting point. Continue pushing through, and don't lose that drive. If you need coffee or a redbull to help you get through, do it.

So I've been rambling on for a while now, and I have a stack of things that need to get done sitting next to me, so I'll end this blog post here. I hope you all study hard, and do amazing on your final exams! I'll be crossing my fingers!

December 07, 2015

Book Review: Life and Death

Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined

Life And Death, by Stephanie Meyer
Release Date: 10/6/15.

It's been ten years since the first book in the Twilight Saga, Twilight, released...I honestly can't wrap my head around it. Ten years ago, I was in my last year of elementary school, as a fifth grader. Now I'm twenty one years old, and in the third year of university.

Boy, does time fly by!

With the ten year anniversary, I'm sure many of you, just like myself, assumed she would finally release Midnight Sun. If you don't know what that is, it's another installment in Stephanie Meyer's series which she wrote not too long after Breaking Dawn. But during the writing and editing process, the book was somehow leaked, before it was fully completed, and Meyer decided she didn't want to continue working on it.

All of us hardcore Twilight fans were absolutely crushed, but being somewhat of a writer myself (with this blog and the many essays I've written throughout my education), I know how disappointing it is to have something like that happen; especially if that person was really close to you.

The ten year mark finally rolled around, and we were all greeted by a mediocre ten year anniversary edition of Twilight. No one was excited, and no was looking forward to it. Everyone had their first, worn out, and over loved copy of Twilight, that didn't need replacing.

But Meyer always has a few tricks up her sleeve and she definitely shocked her fans, when the back half of the ten year anniversary edition, had a second story. The second story, as you can tell by the title of this post, is Life and Death, and it's a retelling of Twilight, with all of the characters' genders swapped.

When I heard this, I was most excited to see how Beau would act. Bella is socially awkward, has no hand eye coordination, and in all honesty seems depressed or sad somehow, most of the time. I wanted to see if Meyer would give Beau these same qualities, or follow the "guide to being a strong male" and change him.

Of course I was also dying of anticipation of what Edith and Jules would be like, and if they carried any resemblance to Edward and Jacob. In some ways they did. Edith more so than Jules.

The rest of the characters all pretty much stayed the same besides their gender, which I also really liked. I found myself having a hard time keeping all of the names straight, remembering who was who relative to Twilight, so I was glad their personalities didn't change.

The story line pretty much follows Twilight, with a few altercations due to the gender swapping, and a few minor details. The ending wasn't what I expected at all, but I'm not going to discuss that, since I want you all to be able to experience for yourselves.

So did I enjoy Life and Death? Yes.

I think what brought me the most excitement was the memories it resurfaced for me. The first time I picked up the series, the love I had for Jacob, the confusion I had towards Bella's depression, the experiences I had with friends when I went to see the movies in theater, it gave me all of that. It allowed me to relive all of those memories, and even create new ones.

I also enjoyed the story for what it was worth. Now that I'm twenty one years old, I did find the relationship between Beau and Edith a bit forced, but overall I enjoyed it.

There were some things I, however, wasn't too fond of. The biggest factor being that we didn't get too hear much from Jules. The love triangle, that basically takes over the entire Twilight Saga, isn't present in this one. We also don't get to experience Jules turning into a wolf, or being part of the pack.

I found this pretty disappointing, mostly because I was always a Team Jacob kind of chick, and couldn't believe that Jules didn't play this kind of role in Life and Death.

Overall, I liked the book and was happy to have the opportunity to read it. It was a great experience just reminisce about my childhood and something I truly loved.

Have you gotten the chance to read Life and Death? Do you plan to?

If you have, what did you think?