Quote of the Day: A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms

I was a little dissapointed with the quotes from A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms. Usually A Song of Ice and Fire has some really good quotes, but these are just sort of good. Still kinda cool if you try and think of some of the deeper meanings to them.
“The snail may leave a trail of slime behind him, but a little slime will do a man no harm, while if you dance with dragons, you must expect to burn.”
George R.R. Martin, A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms
“A great battle is a terrible thing,” the old knight said, “but in the midst of blood and carnage, there is sometimes also beauty, beauty that could break your heart.”
George R.R. Martin, A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms
“all men are fools, and all men are knights, where women are concerned.”
George R.R. Martin, A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms

Book Review: A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms

A century before A GAME OF THRONES, two unlikely heroes wandered Westeros…

Rating: ★★★★☆

Author: George R.R. Martin

Continueing with the Game of Thrones theme that has been so popular lately, for whatever reason, this week I decided I’d review A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms, a prequel “series” to the main storyline.

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Having read the main series before I got a hold of this, I had a basic understanding of some of the characters in the book.

What I really enjoy about the supplementary Game of Thrones books is that there is usually some really nice artwork to look at while you read. There is some artwork in this one, but not as much as I would prefer, and msot of it is sketches.

I read it probably three years ago now, and I still remember some of the moments in the book because of how cool they are. I remember tjere was one about Duncan, or Dunc, who is the main character of the book, and he is tried for a crime, which causes a trial by combat.

After the combat, which his team had one, multiple royal family members and Kingsguard members were left dead, all because they defended the innocence of some random guy, who was really a sorry excuse for a knight. His main feature was just finding Egg, and guiding him around the world and keeping him out of trouble.

Dunc and Egg make a wonderful pair, and become life-long friends because of the events in this book. Ser Duncan is not only a knight in name, but also one in deed. This is something increasingly rare in the seven kingdoms. There are few true knights and even fewer when the events of A Song of Ice and Fire take place.

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Dunc is a strong and honorable knight, but isn’t all that smart. They call him “thick as a castle wall,” but that’s where Egg comes into play.

Egg is still a boy, though he has a fully developed mind that even the Maesters shall envy. He tempers Ser Duncan’s wrath, guiding him to choose the best course of action. Indeed he has the mind that Duncan lacks. However, for all his intelligence, he still has a whole world to see and understand; he still needs to develop his wisdom.

By being Duncan’s squire, he gets to see honour and decency; he begins to understand how people work, and how best to defeat them; he learns that it can be achieved through words as well as deeds.

The two embark on some interesting adventures. Their first (The Hedge Knight ) is by far my favourite. It depicts the pair’s first meeting, and they discover how important them coming together was. Dunc changes the fate of the Seven Kingdoms. The two only met by chance. Their actions lead to the altercation of who is to be the next King. So, it’s all rather far reaching stuff. The second story ( The Sworn Sword) didn’t quite work for me and felt a little flat in all. The third ( The Mystery Knight) made up for it, though, with its character defining moments.

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Overall they are all a short read, but nontheless are fun to read, and if you are a Game of Thrones fan, they are a necessity.

Episode Review: Game of Thrones Season 8 Episode 2

So we all know we are less than a week away from the biggest battle in cinematic history, but everyone was still waiting on the edge of their seats during this episode because they don’t want to miss a minute of it.

The episode started with Jaime being put in front of Sansa, Daenerys and Jon, and they would decide on his fate.

Daenerys is pretty gung ho about havign his head. I mean Jaime was the one that killed her father, and it was Jaime’s family that helped lead to the death of her brothers and sisters.

If you think about it though, Daenerys’ family was overthrown by a lot of the houses she is now working with, and she seems to have forgiven them. I guess it might come down to the fact that Jon and Sansa are the children, where Jaime and the Lannisters were directly involved.


 

Anyways, Jaime was put on “trial” and it looked like it wasn’t going well. Sansa was ready to kill him, Daenerys is still ready to kill him, and Jon doesn’t really give a shit.

Jaime says he wants to fight for the living. Despite everying he has done for his family, the threat of the undead army destroying the world is bigger than any threat Cersei might have.

Bran could have said something,  to condemn Jaime, and he does say something.

“The things we do for love” is his sentence, but he doesn’t utter a word about being pushed out of a window, because I think he knows that Jaime is needed for the final battles to come agaisnt the Night King and his sister Cersei.

Jaime hasn’t actually done anything wrong legally, other than pushing Bran. He was pardoned for killing The Mad King, and was at war with the Starks when he attacked Ned. Daenerys is sort of being petty in her strong belief that Jaime needs to die.

It’s actually Brienne who stands up to the plate, and she says how honourable Jaime is and how Sansa owes her life to Jaime’s decisions. This ultimately sways Sansa, and Jon doesn’t seem to care, he just needs bodies to fight the coming threat, so Jaime is let off the hook.

Jaime being let off the hook is the last straw in the Daenerys’ opinions of Tyrion, but this is also the first instance where we see Jin giving her the cold shoulder because of what Sam told him at the end of the last episode.

After the trial is over we see Jaime and Bran talking under the weirdwood tree, and Bran says something interesting. Jaime asks why he didn’t say anything, Bran basically says there was no point because of what needed to be done. Jaime asks if they can speak about it after the coming battle, and Bran says what if there is no after? (sorry for my butchering I deleted my recording of it by accident).

This is making me think that Bran is going to die. I think Bran 100% knows what is going on after this battle, and he is moving pieces into place to get things to happen properly. HIm telling Jaime there might not be an after is either hinting at his own death or the death of Jaime. I don’t think it’ll be Jaime’s death because I think his story line will end with his sister.


 

We cut over to Gendry being Gendry and making some dragonglass weapons for the battle to come before Arya swoops in and shows how truly bad ass she is. This was a hint at their relationship to come, and it was pretty clear to me when they finally did the horizontal tango later on in the episode.

I think it was about time for them to get together. They were friends since the earlier seasons, and Arya is pretty bad ass, and Gendry is a snack! The two of them together is my favourite couple in the series and I think they might actually end up together at the end of the day. FINGERS CROSSED!

I was a little shocked that we got to see Arya “naked”. I thought it was a bit surprising, and it didn’t really seem to fit in the scene, but at the same time I think it did add to the scene at the end of it all. They’re both young, like eachother, and Arya wants to try it out before she dies.


 

Jaime and Tyrion get to have a little bit of a funny conversation about the coming battles, and how Tyrion wouldn’t mind coming back from the dead to kill Cersei. With her prophecy saying her younger brother will kill her, and Tyrion saying he wants to kill her, joking or not, I think Jaime will be the one to kill her in the end. Tyrion is too kind of a soul to even kill the sister that he loves.

Jaime sort of ignores Tyrion to go and talk to Brienne who is training soldiers in the yard. They watch over Pod, who has become GOALS, and talk about how far he has come sicne he first set out with Brienne.

They had a nice moment together where Jaime offers his sword to Brienne to fight, and Brienne accepts it willingly. This was one of the nicer moments between the two of them, but the best moment comes a bit later.


 

Jorah has a meeting with Daenerys, and admits that Tyrion is the better Hand of the Queen. He could pribably have taken the job easily, but I think he realizes he isn’t the best fit, that Tyrion is a smart man who learns from his mistakes to help her.

Danny has a little talk with Sansa moments later, and the sass between the two of them is crazy. Sansa is the smarter of the two, in my opinion, and Daenerys wants to be her friend. Sansa warms up a bit, before stating that she and the North don’t plan on bending the knee when Daenerys takes the throne.

Luckily the two of them are saved by Theon coming home. Theon has gone through a hell of a lot over the last few seasons, but he has finally come back to help the Starks, and Sansa starts to cry. I think she loves him as a brother, and knows she wouldn’t be alive withtout him. It was a very heartbreaking scene but it was great to Sansa break apart for a moment when she saw Theon.


 

We cut out to the courtyard again and Gilly and Davos are doing a good job at controlling the regular townsfolk and guiding them into the coming events. They are two characters that I think are forgotten about pretty easily, which is unfortunate because Gilly is really living her best life. She has a kid, learning to read, and has just become a strong character that is ready for what is to come.

Davos also gets the scene with the girl who has a scar on her face, and I think it was a nice throwback for him, and for the audience to see how he interacts with the young helpless children in the realm. It adds to his character, and I really appreciate his positivity even though he has lost all of the children he has ever cared about.


 

Jon sees Edd coming into the yard, and goes to hug him before Tormud tackles him and gives him a big bear hug. LOL. He also asks after Brienne which was a good laugh in a rather dramatic episode.

All of the main characters meet for a war council, where we find out some pretty important information for the battle that is coming.

The Night King is after Bran, because he wants the world to experience an endless night, and killing Bran would be like destroying the memory of the world.

We finally get to fiogure out the intentions of the Night King, which is just about what I expected from him. I think we all knew Bran would be important, but now we have our confirmation.

Davos states is perfectly, and says that death is being forgotten. Death isn’t when you are killed, it’s when nobody remembers you or your stories any more.

Bran, who I assume knows what will happen, says he will wait in the weirwood for the Night King to come. The army of the living realize they don’t really stand a chance against the dead, and they plan to draw out the Night King and kill him, which will hopefully kill all the White Walkers.

Jon says he won’t leave Bran alone in the weirwood, but Theon volunteers to protect him with the Ironborn. It was nice seeing Theon trying to pay for his past mistakes with Bran, and Bran and Jon accepting Theon’s determination in protecting Bran.

As the meeting concludes, Jon gives Daenerys the cold shoulder, AGAIN, and I think the entire audience knew that the confrontation would come. I mean we knew the truth, and I don’t think Jon wants to tell her because he only wants to survive this coming battle, but inevitably tells her in the crypts, to which she replies

“You are the last male heir to the iron throne”

Now note she says last male heir, not the last heir. I think the news really opened up her mind to a lot of different possibilities. She slept with her nephew, she’s in love with him, and she’s not the rightful heir anymore.

I think she’s confused and angry that her life goal has just been criushed, but we don’t get to see it happen because of what comes next.


 

Before that though, we get to see Sam, Jon, and Edd finally meet up again. The first time since season 5 that they were all together.

It was a bit sad hearing them talk about Grenn and Pyp. They were best friends over the years of being Sworn Brothers, and I appreciate the callback they had. They would have been a big help in the coming battle, but basically the last of the three Night’s Watch will defend the realms of men like they swore to do years ago.


 

I’m going to skip over my favourite scene for a minute, and mention the Hound briefly. The battle against the undead is literally his worst nightmare. There will be fire everywhere. Literally burning bodies  everywhere he looks. I’m not sure he has overcome that fear, and I am interested to see how he handles it all when it comes. I think he will fight through it and do what needs to be done, but being Game of Thrones we can never be too sure. Maybe he will wield a flaming sword and kill a few White Walkers or something.


 

Now my favourite scene of the episode. Tormud, Brienne, Jaime, Tyrion, Davos,  and Pod sit around the fire, looking to keep warm for the night. They laugh, get drunk, share some stories, and overall it is a lovely scene. There are two moments that really drive this scene home for me.

The first is Pod singing. He has a surprisingly nice voice, and a montage of scenes play overtop of it. He sings a song that has a pretty interesting tie in to the story if you know the truth to it all, but I won’t get into that here.

The scene that almost brought me to tearswas Brienne being knighted. It had been a dream of hers for years, and when Jaime finally knighted her she was happier than any other character had been in the show. Despite White Walkers, the Night King, imminent death, and a creepy ginger man a few feet away from her, she managed a smile so big that it put that scene into my Top 5 favourite scenes of the series for sure. It was so nice seeing someone experience true happiness, and honestly I’m not even doing it justice. You need to see it for yourself to see how beautiufl it really is.


 

The episode ends with the army of the dead within eyeshot of Winterfell, and boy oh boy is this battle going to be amazing!!!!!

 

What do you guys think will happen with the rest of the season? Will your character live or die? Let me know in the comments.

Book Review: Fire & Blood by George R.R. Martin

Centuries before the events of A Game of Thrones, House Targaryen—the only family of dragonlords to survive the Doom of Valyria—took up residence on Dragonstone. Fire and Blood begins their tale with the legendary Aegon the Conqueror, creator of the Iron Throne, and goes on to recount the generations of Targaryens who fought to hold that iconic seat, all the way up to the civil war that nearly tore their dynasty apart.

What really happened during the Dance of the Dragons? Why did it become so deadly to visit Valyria after the Doom? What is the origin of Daenerys’s three dragon eggs? These are but a few of the questions answered in this essential chronicle, as related by a learned maester of the Citadel and featuring more than eighty all-new black-and-white illustrations by artist Doug Wheatley. Readers have glimpsed small parts of this narrative in such volumes as The World of Ice & Fire, but now, for the first time, the full tapestry of Targaryen history is revealed.

Rating:★★★★★ (MY FIRST 5 STAR REVIEW!!!)

Author: George R.R. Martin

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We all know who the Targaryen’s are. Whether you’re a fan of the show or the books we all know that the Targaryen’s are the masters of dragons.

Who came before Daenerys? We know she had a brother, and obviously parents, but turn the sands of time back far enough, and we start to wonder where the Targaryens first came from.

In The Song of Ice & Fire we know that Dragons have been extinct for almost three hundred years, until Daenerys brought Drogon, Rhaegal and Viserion over from Essos and began her wars against Cersei and The Night King.

While I was reading the book, there were a lot of moments that were very similar to things Daenerys had done in her adventures, and the phrase “Those who are ignorant of History are doomed to repeat it”  coming to mind.

But, that’s enough of Daenerys, though I’m sure we all enjoyed her in last night’s episode, the season premiere of Season 8!!!

From what I took away from Fire & Blood, the Targaryen’s are this near “godly” offshoot of humans that people seemed more than okay accepting as their rulers.

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Now this could be because of their unnaturally light coloured hair, their violet eyes, or the fact that if you didn’t think that there was a pretty good chance you could be burnt alive by a two ton flying lizard at the drop of a hat.

Fire & Blood was an interesting look into the rule of the Targaryen kings and queens (along with a few other family members) that ruled over Westeros until Robert’s Rebellion.

I was a bit disappointed that it only covered the first half of the Targaryen rulers, but after finishing it up, I’m glad it did. I think if George R.R. Martin had tried to put the entire history of the Targaryens into just one book, it wouldn’t be the same, which ties into my next point.

As a history book, I never thought I would be fascinated with the inner workings of a kingdom more than people fighting each other with their dragons in the Dance of Dragons.

I mean the war was pretty cool, and there were some brutal moments during it that I was excited to read about, but I was more excited to read about Jaehaerys and his wife Alysanne, or Aegon and his sisters Rhaenys and Visenya.

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The political aspects of the book had me sitting on the edge of my seat more than the aspects of war, which takes some great writing to be able to do that.

Fire & Blood takes a look at all of the Targaryen rulers from Aegon I ‘The Conqueror’ all the way until the start of Aegon III ‘The Dragonsbane’ and something really surprised me.

Multiple times in the book there is mention that Targaryen’s don’t suffer from normal illnesses, or live normal lives. They see themselves as this family that sits on a higher pedestal than the rest of the world, and as the world progresses, the people begin to see that too.

But that really isn’t the case. After reading the book you realize that there are a vast majority of Targaryens that are some pretty shitty people.

Incest aside, many of them are terrible rulers, kill innocent people, take multiple wives, kill babies, family members, friends, and countless other issues.

Some fly  off to the pleasure houses of Lys, some are so uninterested in all aspects of life they don’t have a place in society, and some even devote themselves religiously.

When it comes down to it, they are just like any other family. They have some shining stars, like Jaehaerys, and they have some real duds like Viserys.

In my opinion there were two good rulers. Two rulers who actually benefitted the realm and had an era of prosperity that benefited commoners and lords alike. Aegon I and Jaehaerys. Some of the others were okay, but they didn’t tip the scales. More of a figurehead than an actual benefit to the realm.

Some rulers were bad, killing innocents or screwing up the realm.

Targaryens weren’t this godly family that could do no wrong. Maybe it was due to the generations of incest, but many of them were very flawed in some way. There were always a few diamonds in the rough, but no matter if they were a good or bad ruler, one thing made them better than the rest.

Dragons.

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Dragons played two roles in the Targaryen’s history.

Weapon and Symbol.

On one hand dragons were used for exactly what people imagined them to be. They were weapons, flying over the battlefields burning their foes to ash. When they weren’t burning their enemies alive, their enemies were kneeling. Surrendering to that powerful beast and the man or woman on its back.

We see this in the Dance of Dragons, we see it with Aegon I, we see it through the entire history of the Targaryen’s until they finally died out during Aegon III’s rule.

This idea of dragons being a weapon was what made the Targaryen’s the rulers of Westeros after the kingdoms were united. I mean how could you stand up to such raw power. In an instant thousands of your men could be burnt alive, and you were powerless to stop it.

As the kingdoms were united, and warfare between the kingdoms died out, the dragons lost their role as a weapon, and became a symbol. A symbol of peace to be exact.

It wasn’t until Jaehaerys I that the dragons truly became a symbol of peace. I might be wrong but I don’t think he ever used his dragon in a battle. His dragon was used for efficiency. He would fly it around the seven kingdoms and meet with lords and ladies, commoners and royalty alike to learn from them.

He wanted to create a better kingdom, and learning from its people was the best way to do that, but horses were too slow. His dragon could get him across the world in a few days.

This efficiency, and his own nature made Jaehaerys the best Targaryen king in my opinion.

Now back to the dragon as a symbol of peace. Under his rule, Jaehaerys basically stopped all wars. There were some battles that took place during his time, but they were minor skirmishes for the most part, and it was in part to do with his dragons.

Imagine being a villager, living in a village you hadn’t been away from for more than a day, and a dragon flies overhead, landing in the next town. As cool awe-inspiring as that would be, it would be terrifying. This beast could kill you in an instant, and that’s how everyone saw it.

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Jaehaerys wouldn’t have done that. He would have found a peaceful solution to solve an issue, but the idea was there. Nobody wanted to fight against these dragons, so they became peaceful. They accepted peace, and didn’t look for war when there was no cause to.

I think Daenerys’ dragons are the opposite. Her dragons are weapons through and through, and come the end of the series I don’t think there will be a place for them.

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I don’t think the Westeros we have now, the one Danny wants to create has a need for dragons, and I hope she realizes that.

I could get in to how they are her children and maybe she can’t have human kids while they are alive, but I think that Danny might have to kill her dragons in order to get the world she wants.

She wants to break the wheel, and having dragons might help her do that, but it won’t help her make the new world that she wants to make.

What do you think the role of dragons will be for the end of Game of Thrones? Will they stay around? Will they survive the battle of Winterfell? 

And what do you think of the Targaryens as a family? This role as rulers has been put on their heads for nundreds of years, but maybe they arent as worthy as people think? Or maybe they are? let me know in the comments. 

Quote of the Day: The World of Ice and Fire

It’s that time of the week you have all been waiting for. That’s right, it’s FRIDAY’S QUOTE OF THE DAY!!!!!

This week I’ve got an extra special surprise for you though. That’s right, you guessed it… THREE QUOTES.

I know, I know. “Wow three quotes in one day? What did I do to deserve that?”

Well truth be told I feel rather generous today so I thought I’d share it with everyone. Hope you enjoy folks!

“IT IS SAID with truth that every building is constructed stone by stone, and the same may be said of knowledge, extracted and compiled by many learned men, each of whom builds upon the works of those who preceded him. What one of them does not know is known to another, and little remains truly unknown if one seeks far enough.” 
― George R.R. Martin, The World of Ice & Fire: The Untold History of Westeros and the Game of Thrones

George has a lot of great quotes, in all of his books, but this one hits the nail right on the head. Knowledge is a powerful thing, but just because you don’t know something doesn’t mean your dumb. Einstein didn’t know everything. I’m sure there are plenty of things I know that Einstein didn’t, you just have to realize that everyone is different and everyone knows different things.

“No man can say with certainty what the future may hold. But perhaps, in knowing what has already transpired, we can all do our part to avoid the mistakes of our forebears, to emulate their successes, and to create a world more harmonious for our children and their children, for generations to come.”
― George R.R. Martin, The World of Ice & Fire: The Untold History of Westeros and the Game of Thrones

There’s something special about a quote that applies to the book and the real world. BUT this is basically just “Those who are ignorant of history are doomed to repeat it but way fancier. It’s still a really inspiring quote though.

Book Review: The World of Ice & Fire

This is a little known book in the world of Westeros, and I figured I would give it its moment of fame this week before Season 8 of Game of Thrones comes out this weekend. 

Rating: ★★★★☆

Author: George R.R. Martin

I’m a big fan of history, as you probably know by now, and I’m an even bigger fan of fantasy book series, which you should know by now and if you don’t then you do now.

The World of Ice & Fire was a perfect combination of both worlds because it’s an annotated history of the Game of Thrones world that I’ve fallen in love with since reading the books and watching the shows.

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That’s one great thing that Martin has done with his Song of Ice & Fire world. He has built it up so well and so perfectly that you could probably make stories for years to come, just based on information that has already been written.

He’s created the history of these kingdoms and their stories that The World of Ice & Fire can feel like you’re reading a real history book sometimes.

If you want to pick this one up, don’t expect much of a “story”. It reads a lot like a history book. Each of the major houses in Westeros are written about, showing their history since their founding basically, with a few major events highlited for each.

Most of the names in the book one will be one’s you’ve heard before, but only the more dedicated fans will know how everything connects together. Just watching the shows and then reading this might make you a bit confused, but you can definitely do it.

Probably about half of the books gives a brief overview of what each of the Targaryen kings during their reigns. Since there has been so many it sort of glances over each of them and their more notable events, with the more important ones getting more pages than the less important ones.

The other half of the book is about the major houses’ histories, and the history of some of the other cities and countries in the world that you may have heard of at some point.

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It talks about white walkers, the first people in Westeros, some major battles, Old Valyria, Robert’s Rebellion, and everything in between. It’s a nice little book to read if you’re big into trying to predict theories for upcoming books or episodes.

What I really love about the book, and what really made me enjoy the experience of reading it is the beautiful artwork inside. Almost every page has some illustration on it, and some pages there’s nothing but.

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It almost feels like what I imagine the history books of Westeros to look like, which is a little added bonus I really enjoy. It’s really a piece of art, and if you want to consider yourself a Game of Thrones nerd you definitely need to give it a read.

I don’t really know what else to say. It’s a history book of the entire world, so there’s not even moments I’d want to point out that really stood out to me because that’s not the type of book it is, and I don’t think that was the intent of it.

The intent wasn’t to tell a story, the intent of the book was to help create the story that was already being told. I think that’s the case with all of the supplemental Game of Thrones materials.

They aren’t made to tell their own stories, they’re ment to tell the complete story of A Song of Ice and Fire, which they are all only an aspect of.

Next week I’m going to be taking a look at another Game of Thrones related book, but I’m not going to spoil it just yet. 

I would love to hear what you guys are most excited for in the upcoming season though. Let me know in the comments!

Channel Update

Alright so I originally started this blog as a school assignment but I really started to like it and spent some free time during the term figuring out whether or not I should take the blog full time, and how I would be able to do that.

Well good news is I figured out how I can do both of those. I’ve got new ideas for the blog and plan on updating it every day, but I’m not guarenteeing anything with school going on.

So here is the updated schedule of what the posts will look like:

Monday: Book Review

Tuesday: Type it Out Tuesdays (post different writing prompts for people     interested in writing themselves)

Wednesday: Book related news (books being adapted to movies/tv shows, new books coming out, etc.)

Thursday: Thursday Thoughts (different thoughts I have on book related things ex. My Top 10s, Book related life stories, seasonal book topics, writing challenges etc.)

Friday: Quote of the Day (from the book I reviewed that week)

Saturday/Sunday: Taking a break to relax

I also have some channel updates coming out too. I want to update the books I’ve read/want to read  and throw in alphabetical shortcuts so it’s easier to find the author.

I’m also gonna make a Facebook group book club so theres an easier platform for more people to chat about a book. The book club will be one book a month to start instead of every week.

I’m also going to update some pictures and minor pages on the blog itself.

I hope everyone is as excited as I am for this update.