Leigha's Little Library

I am a Booktuber and book reviewer! I post my reviews here and on Goodreads. I post bookish videos on Youtube as well. You can find all my links in my profile. I appropriate any followers here and subscribers over on Booktube.

 

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I accept kindle books for review. I reserve the right to turn down book. Email and ask before sending kindle copy. If you send a book unsolicited, I may still read and review, but only if it interest me.

 

I read and review for fun, so I do them in my own time.

Email and send kindle copies here: Currently not taking review books!

Soul of an Octopus: [On Sale Today!]

Soul of an Octopus: A Surprising Exploration Into the Wonder of Consciousness is on daily deal for $3.95 at Audible (audiobook).

 

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(You don't need to be a member to buy books)

 

I haven't read it yet, but a friend said:

 

"I will revisit this book again and again and I honestly just feel like I can't find adequate words to say how much I loved this book! Can I live in this book now, please?

 

My friend's full review

Her blog - Credit where credit is due!!

 

*I'm not sponsered by anything. Just spreading the love of books!

Recently Read

For anyone curious, here is my most recent read books!

176271 Halloween Party by R L Stine [3/5 stars]

I'm really torn on what to rate this book. In many ways it is outdated and problematic, but the nostalgia factor hangs on really tightly to me. I've probably read it at least a few times since I was a preteen. This read through was the slowest I've ever read one of these books; it wasn't engaging me.

Started: July 2 Ended: Aug 2

Read for R L Stine: Fear Street Challenge (June book - was behind)

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The Secret Bedroom by R L Stine [3/5 stars]

I read it in one day. Some of his books are like candy, though that might be the nostalgia speaking. I felt a lot more engaged in this book. I really must say that I hated the mean girl aspect, which seems to show up in most RL's books. Also, why do the mean girls have to be redheads?! (Are we really seen as mean, stuck up people?)

Started: Aug 2 Ended: Aug 2

Read for R L Stine: Fear Street Challenge (July book - was behind)

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milk and honey by rupi kaur [4/5 stars]

I started this one on a whim after getting the Scribd subscription. I listened to the author "perform" these poems with the audiobook while reading the physical copy. That heightened my enjoyment of the collection. Some are very hard to hear/read and deal with abuse, sexual abuse and other things people might find triggering.

Started: Aug 8 Ended: Aug 8

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Frindle by Andrew Clements [4/5 stars]

Another book I started on a whim after getting Scribd. Nostalgic book. I enjoyed the story very much, but not sure how to rate it. Child me would probably say it is a 5 star. I'm not afraid to admit there were a couple parts that made me choke up in a happy way, especially the ending, which I adored. Is this book farfetched? Maybe, but I love that it might give kids and kids at heart a feeling that anything is possible.

Started: Aug 8 Ended: Aug 8

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Coraline by Neil Gaiman [5/5 stars]

I read the 10th anniversrary copy on Scribd. The 10th Anniversary Edition does not really offer that much more, so if you already own a copy of the book, I wouldn't suggest you buy the 10th Anniversary Edition, too. Unless of course you want to collect everything Neil Gaiman (I know some people like to collect multiple copies of the same book...etc.) This is my second time reading it. I still love the story (I even love the movie more. Shh, don't tell anyone.)

Started: Aug 8 Ended: Aug 8

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And Tango Makes Three by Justin Richardson [5/5 stars]

Ahhhh I love this picture book!

Started Aug 9 Ended: Aug 9

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Julia's House for Lost Creatures by Ben Hatke [4/5 stars]

I am proud to be an adult who still loves and finds comfort in books published/meant for children. I don't think books should have age limits anyway. This little picture book was very cute.

Started: Aug 10 Ended: Aug 10

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The Sleepwalker by R L Stine [4/5 stars]

I really liked this one. I read it as a preteen, but I couldn't remember the plot twist. My only reason for not giving it 5 stars is how R L Stine always writesa male characters who think they are entitled to the girl character and how the boy treated the girl when she turned him down. Very problematic element. Rape vibes and abusive treatment.

Especially, considering how she ends up getting back with that boy and they joke around with "maybe I like creepy guys." Uh...no thank you! People, please don't stay with a person who treats you how Link treated Mayra. His actions were way over the line, he even threatened her with the "you'll be sorry" line.

(show spoiler)

Started: Aug 13 Ended: Aug 14

Read for R L Stine: Fear Street Challenge (August book)

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This Star Won't Go Out by Esther, Wayne, Lori Earl, with parts written by friends and family. [3/5 stars]

I don't know how to sum up my feelings about this book. I've read it twice. I started it again this "Esther Day" in her honor. It is hard to read and heartbreaking because you know the end before you start.

5 stars for my feels for Esther for sure. 3/3.5 for the layout/presentation of the book.(All the pictures and drawings were great, though.) It was confusing in parts and if I was clueless about all the references, I'm not sure I would have understood much. I relate to Esther and her Nerdfighter ways, love of Harry Potter...etc. She was a great girl that we lost too soon.

Started: Aug 3 Ended: Aug 16th

“Come here, little girl. I know what you want, little girl.” It was a rustling voice, scratchy and dry. It made Coraline think of some kind of enormous dead insect. Which was silly, she knew. How could a dead thing, especially a dead insect, have a voice?

She walked through several rooms with low, slanting ceilings until she came to the final room. It was a bedroom, and the other crazy old man upstairs sat at the far end of the room, in the near darkness, bundled up in his coat and hat.

As Coraline entered he began to talk. “Nothing’s changed, little girl,” he said, his voice sounding like the noise dry leaves make as they rustle across a pavement. “And what if you do everything you swore you would? What then? Nothing’s changed. You’ll go home. You’ll be bored. You’ll be ignored. No one will listen to you, not really listen to you. You’re too clever and too quiet for them to understand. They don’t even get your name right.

“Stay here with us,” said the voice from the figure at the end of the room. “We will listen to you and play with you and laugh with you. Your other mother will build whole worlds for you to explore, and tear them down every night when you are done. Every day will be better and brighter than the one that went before. Remember the toy box? How much better would a world be built just like that, and all for you?”

“And will there be gray, wet days where I just don’t know what to do and there’s nothing to read or to watch and nowhere to go and the day drags on forever?” asked Coraline.

From the shadows, the man said, “Never.”

“And will there be awful meals, with food made from recipes, with garlic and tarragon and broad beans in?” asked Coraline.

“Every meal will be a thing of joy,” whispered the voice from under the old man’s hat. “Nothing will pass your lips that does not entirely delight you.”

“And could I have Day-Glo green gloves to wear, and yellow Wellington boots in the shape of frogs?” asked Coraline.

“Frogs, ducks, rhinos, octopuses—whatever you desire. The world will be built new for you every morning. If you stay here, you can have whatever you want.”

Coraline sighed. “You really don’t understand, do you?” she said. “I don’t want whatever I want. Nobody does. Not really. What kind of fun would it be if I just got everything I ever wanted? Just like that, and it didn’t mean anything. What then?”

“I don’t understand,” said the whispery voice.

“Of course you don’t understand,” she said, raising the stone with the hole in it to her eye. “You’re just a bad copy she made of the crazy old man upstairs.”
Coraline - Neil Gaiman, Dave McKean

I'm currently re-reading this book (I got Scribd back again!!) and I came to this scene. It really is true what Coraline says and I think we forget that. Also just because you might get everything you want... that doesn't equal happiness.

 

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[This bit of wisdom from a Children's book (though I believe no matter your age, you should be able to read any book/books shouldn't have age limits) Coraline by Neil Gaiman.]

 

 

 

*Not sponsored:(I'm nobody) For those who don't know, Scribd is an ebook and audiobook subscription service. I really like it! They don't have the largest catalog, but enough to make the price worth it. $8.99 a month, and I think they might have a free trial. Heck, if you read or listen to one book, I believe you got your money's worth. Scribd's worldwide! You'll be able to access Scribd in any country unless local service providers or authorities have blocked it. Please note: not every title is available in every country.

 

Sharing this, because I wish I had known about it sooner!

Source: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17061.Coraline

I'm Not Okay

Not book related <.< sorry.
 
 
TW: Mental Health & Suicide
 
Disclaimer: **I am not diagnosed (as an adult) for my mental health disorder(s), but I don’t need a doctor to write on paper to tell me I have depression & social anxiety/general anxiety. I don't deny that it would be helpful to know my exact disorders so I could get treatment/therapy, however, we have no insurance yet.(soon! crossing fingers) As a child I was put on antidepressants, so I was diagnosed with something at one point. These are my thoughts and opinions on mental health, and my own personal experiences. Everyone’s mental health journeys are different. End the stigma! Talk about mental health disorders and invisible illnesses!**
 
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The nitty gritty about having a mental health disorder is that it can be so up in the air. I never know if a day will be good or bad. I guess you get so used to the feeling of sadness, random outburst of crying and dark thoughts, that it feels normal, and you don’t notice it get gradually worse. When you are buried so deep, you don’t care about taking care of yourself, so you are in a vicious cycle that is hard to break out of. You stop taking care of your hygiene, stop caring about eating enough or sleeping enough. Or maybe you eat too much (binge) and sleep too much, or maybe you don't sleep enough! Executive dysfunction doesn’t help, of course.
 
I think my normal state of feeling is sort of a numbness or a nothingness. It is really scary, to be honest. My emotions, even love for people or passion for my interests can be turned off on a dime and I have no feelings. I can be in the worst meltdown and then stop on that dime and freeze up and think or say “never mind. I’m fine.” I believe that is one of the reasons as a kid when I would cry or “throw a fit” and just stop out of nowhere, my mom joked about me being good at crocodile tears and that I should be an actress.
 
I am not sure I fully know what true happiness feels like because it is always clouded with dark, depressing thoughts. I don’t think people understand how you can be depressed or have a mental health disorder, but also have days of “wellness” If you smile, laugh or act goofy, they think “oh, yay, you’re cured now.” Even worse, they believe nothing was ever wrong with you. Some people actually believe depression and anxiety is not a real thing. People with mental health disorders or neurological disorders have become very good at masking/faking in order to fit in. Thank about that.
 
Anyone can have an invisible illness. The number of people in the entertainment industry who have died from suicide is an indicator of this. They are rich, famous, usually well-loved, yet they are ill, sad, probably feel alone in a crowd of people. They get so much attention because they are famous and a lot of it is negative from people who can’t comprehend how someone rich and famous who has “everything” can end their life.
 
You can have everything and feel like you have nothing. It doesn’t matter who you are, mental health disorders and invisible illnesses do not discriminate. When someone who suffers from a mental health disorder dies by suicide, they did not commit anything, no crime. They lost a battle with their long-suffering illness. We shouldn’t judge anybody. We should be there for each other, even strangers.
 
If someone looks sad, ask if they are okay, or if they want to talk. Smile more, at friends and family, even at strangers. A smile or heartfelt compliment could change a person’s day for the better. These are things I know, but I don’t always practice them, because I am stuck in my own downward spiral. It is hard to dig out of that hole when nobody is around and your emotions come on strong and then sometimes shut off altogether.
 
I do nothing, at least that is how it would appear to people who don’t understand me. I don’t have a job. #1 Social anxiety & depression #2 Chronic pain makes it limited to what work I could actually do.
 
I sleep, eat, get on the computer and live vicariously through so many people on YouTube. It is like a coping mechanism, it makes me feel better, or sometimes emotionless, which is better than crippling despair, I guess? I go through phases of what type of videos I like. Sometimes about books, sometimes more “real talk” sort of videos where people just share their everyday lives. Lately, I’ve been into watching true crime and ghost hunting videos.
 
Sometimes I read books. Sometimes I play games on my phone. Sometimes I mess with my doll collection. Yes, so, to the outside world, I do nothing. But something very big that I am doing is LIVING. I might not have a paying job, but it is a JOB just to keep myself alive. I would be lying if I said I didn't have suicidal thoughts.
 
I’m sorry if you don’t understand or if that makes you sad. It’s just the truth. Thinking of death, wanting to die and believing the world would be better off without me are just some of the dark things in my brain. My mental health and chronic pain are huge factors to these feelings. I am more inclined to think about dark and morbid things. My mind tells me nobody cares about me, it nags at me that I am a burden to people. I do know this isn’t true, but sometimes I can’t understand why people would care about me, let alone love me.
 
I don’t hardly reach out to friends and family because of being depressed and social anxiety, but how many times do they reach out to me? (And I mean heartfelt reaching out, not tagging me in a spam post or liking a post, or something.) Everyone is dealing with their own stuff, I get it. Also, understand when you do reach out to someone with depression, they might not respond at first or they might not know how to respond. If you care about them or love them, don’t stop letting them know.
 
Just... I’m lonely. I miss the time when it was so simple to make friends and maintain them. I’m not okay, but I am trying to cope.
 

I'm Alive

[I haven't been on here because I've not been reading... >/<]

 

Anyways...just wanted to say hi and share something, sorry I've got nothing book related. [TW: Implied eating disorder mentioned]

 

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I broke up with a toxic relationship. This has put me on the path of a new journey, a magical adventure!
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I stopped talking about my health journey (as in my "weight loss" journey) because it got me to an obsessive point with working out, tracking every little detail and trying and failing to change my diet many, many times.
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It made my relationship with food worse. I would punish myself when I ate something "bad" by going on a fast, which meant not eating for a day or so. Sometimes I told myself, "okay, I will try to do a 3 day fast, or even a week fast." I seriously wanted to, but I never made it and ended up binge eating something "bad" again and starting the cycle of punishing myself all over again. The fast was seen as a good thing, a cleanse, so to speak.
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Not only that but beating myself up constantly while on my so-called journey. I would push myself to go beyond what I know my body could do on certain days because I didn't want to let others down by failing. I think that may be one reason why my chronic pain, depression, and anxiety are at an all-time high. I put too much pressure on my mind, body, and soul.
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Goodbye Diet Culture. We're never, ever getting back together. I'm striving to love myself and my body in all its stages. I am working toward not caring one lick what others think of me and my body. I'm working toward being positive, finding peace and tranquillity.
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Here are things I want to be routine & practice daily: Meditation, positive affirmations (even if that means talking to myself more), stretching, working up to yoga, remembering gratitude...etc.
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As for food, no food is bad, but I honestly know that because of my digestive problems and autoimmune, there are foods I should avoid. However, I won't beat myself up if I eat them. I'm trying to learn to eat intuitively and my body is not liking wheat, too much dairy, and meat. Not only do these things make me really sick/in pain or jump-start IBS, they just make me feel sluggish, heavy and generally unwell.
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I usually write dark poetry(which has its purpose), but I will leave you with something positive I wrote yesterday:
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Hear Me,
Power of Healing
Let me be free of anxiety

 

Hear Me,
Power of Healing
Let me be cleansed of dark energy

 

Hear Me,
Power of Healing
Cleanse my mind and my space

 

Cleanse, heal, peace
Cleanse, heal, peace
Cleanse, heal, peace

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If you read this, you are beautiful, you are worthy, the world needs you and I love you.

 

Blessed Be!

This is a voice-over video with a slideshow of photos, some might seem random. The important thing is the story and I am feeling more like doing voice-overs right now. I was given unsolicited advice on how to change my appearance by photoshopping my face!

 

Storytime of how my mom jumped to my defense and I witnessed her and a 70+-year-old man have a virtual catfight.

*Bangs head on table*

Why Men Don't Have a Clue and Women Always Need More Shoes: The Ultimate Guide to the Opposite Sex - Allan Pease, Barbara Pease

Oh, my! What was young me thinking? I bought this book when I was probably a late teenager. Who knows why! Honestly, this book is not great. I flipped to a random page and it is talking about training your children. Children are not pets. It also says a child's behavior is the direct result of how the parents raised them. Not always true!

* Learned behavior - Blame the mother.

* Retrain your man

*Don't nag at your kids, train them

* Men need 30 minutes to "fire gaze" after a long, hard day at work. Leave the man alone.

*Mother-in-Law: An anagram of Woman Hitler

*Young people are more likely to lie, cheat & steal.

It actually says if a man tells an offensive joke, don't get offensive, because if you do, it is you who chose to be offended. Then it gives examples of so-called jokes a man might tell. I won't tell you the answer, but to give you an idea. What's the difference between a tart and a bitch? What's the difference between a woman with PMS and a terrorist? Why do men give their penis a name? What can you say to a man who's just had sex? The answers... are sexist and of course, they are offensive. Why can't someone be offended by them?

Jokes and humor do ease pain, as the book points out, but there is a line you can cross.

Judging from the title, it's obvious the book treats men like they are not smart, and the book really does! Some guys might be clueless, some girls might like shoes, but not every single one.

I failed...or did I?

I'm sorry I haven't been around on my blog or interacted with anyone I follow. I've been out of the book world. I can't read, I can't even watch many book related videos. You could call it a reading slump, but is it really? Or is it part of depression. Fun things are no longer fun sometimes.

 

However... I'm writing a lot. That is fun, even though I hardly get noticed. That part sucks, but I have missed writing. I have focusing problems, so the fact that I've been writing so much might be why it has been hard for me to read. I don't want to loose my writing mojo!

 

So the stuff I'm writing is fanfiction. I don't want to publicly share it here, because my real name and fanfic world shouldn't mx for "reasons."

 

But yeah...

 

Just wanted to update and say hi.

One of those days

Man, I really miss Steve Irwin & Mr. Rogers.

 

They are some of the "famous" people whose deaths feel really personal, as if they were family. Each time I see mention of them, I burst into tears. There are other famous people whose death feel personal, but I grew up with these guys. Death really gets to me even if I barely knew the person, even if I didn't know them at all. I don't mean only for famous people. Anyone. I've been told it is because I have a big heart, but does my mental health "glitches" play a part in how death basically triggers me into a melt down, depressive state?

 

 

 

 

Old fanfiction... cringe

I'm really happy because I found some old fanfiction that I thought was lost forever. They are from when i first started to write, so they are bad and cringy. I was a silly fangirl and I wrote for non-canon characters being romantically involved, usually LGBT+. I might still do that today, but I try to avoid stereotypes and problematic elements past me didn't think about.

 

These stories are so bad that they are "good", though only to me. At the very least they are making me laugh, even giggle to think of the kind of ideas young me had.

 

I even wrote some NC17 things and can not believe it because I don't even care for erotica. Now those bits are so bad, considering I was clueless about the stuff I was writing about.

 

I found the best line in a story:

 

"He yelled in a quiet voice."

 

Bravo, past me, bravo!

Mermaid May! Some mermaid related books I want to read for a themed reading month. (Also some extra books for book clubs.)

Who read these books? Or at least the first book? Meg by Steve Alten.

 

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To someone who is unaware of the source for this movie, it might come across as cheesy or a Jaws copycat, because I mean, it is based on a killer shark. I'm sure the author was inspired by Jaws, or maybe not, who knows. It's not a complete copy and the story is its own. We're all inspired by things.

 

Heck, the movie and books might be cheesy! Who cares? There is nothing wrong with a good cheesy book or movie. In fact, I really love old cheesy books and movies I used to consume from the 80s, 90s & early 00s. (I will even read current published books others might consider cheesy if I'm in that sort of mood.)

 

When I read Meg, I had no idea it was part of a series. There might have only been the one book when I read it. This was back in 2000, give or take a year. Meg was published in 1997. So I was around 14-17 when I read it. All I remember is that I liked the book and that it is about a shark.

 

The author went back and updated the first book, adding content and taking away content so that the story would flow better with the prologue and the rest of the series. I think new facts might have come to light, so he changed things in his books.

 

You know what this means, right? I have to go back and reread the updated version of Meg and the rest of the series before the movie comes out! (At the very least read the first couple books.)

 

The movie has been in the works since 1997, and hopefully the release date of August 10th 2018 sticks.

Children books, reading apps & Anne Frank

If you know me at all, you'll know I love everything from children's books, even picture books, young adult, adult, horror, romance, fantasy... you name it.
 
I'm subscribed to Scribd which is a ebook reading service. $8.99 a month and you can read unlimited ebook & audiobooks they have on their website/app. With the sub, you get a free sub to another service, this one called FarFaria, which is a bunch of children stories; original stories just found on this app. Pretty cute stories. You can even have the stories read to you. :)
 
 
 
They have a classics section where they retell some classic or true stories. One was Anne Frank. I read this short story (10 pages or so) and it starts out happy, go lucky, like a typical cute picture book. Um.. okay.
 
 
I'm all for them getting kids introduced to Anne Frank and get them interested in her diary, but this story was just very, very, obviously condensed and some unsuspecting kid is going to get a shock on the last page where it does a huge time jump and says "oh, by the way, they died. Only the father survived. Go read Anne's diary. The end."
 
The app itself is pretty awesome. If you have a kid or are a kid at heart, check it out. If you don't have Scribd, the sub for this is $4.99, I believe. They are not long books, they don't take much brain power to read, but the artwork is really beautiful, and sometimes you just have to shut off your mind and enjoy something simple. It's like meditating, but with picture books. Plus, I will always have these on hand for whenever my niece or nephews are around.
 
I will be 80 years old and still be young at heart, because I never restricted myself on what I like based on an intended age group.

My April TBR

I have a few book club books for April, plus some library books. Here are a list of books I want to read during April.

 

Deadly Divas Book Club is reading The Secret Mother

 

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The Name of the Book club is reading Assassin's Apprentice

 

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Peter Likes Books is doing a group readalong for VC Andrews starting with My Sweet Audrina

 

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and then Heaven.

 

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 Library books:

The Tale of Despereaux: The Graphic Novel

 

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Speak: The Graphic Novel

 

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Josie and the Pussycats Vol. 1

 

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Lumberjanes: Unicorn Power!

 

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Of course I suck at keeping up with TBRs, but here is hoping I can read these books in April! I probably will read a bunch of others as well, depending on mood!!

 

What books will you be reading in April?

Judy Moody #1 by Megan McDonald, Peter H. Reynolds (Illustrator)

Why yes, I am an adult who reads children books.

 

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I will be 80 and still reading picture books. It doesn't matter that books like this are targeted toward preteens or teenagers. I think it is sad if we get to a point in our life where we say "Well I'm XX now, can no longer enjoy that thing I used to enjoy..." It's fine if we naturally outgrow things of course, but don't force yourself to do so if you don't want to.

Judy Moody is a series I could have read when I was around the "right" age, not a preteen, but a teenager. I never read it because of pressure of trying to read things for my age or things that were above my reading level.

I was Judy's age once. It is fun to read about her silly adventures and put myself in her shoes. I never want to get to the point where I can't relate to younger (or older) characters.

Judy and her family are great. Kids of all ages, and kids at heart should get to know them.

*I read this twice. Once from the library and once provided by Netgally*

Source: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/930612.Judy_Moody

The Most Magnificent Thing by Ashley Spires

I was given a cute picture book to read and here a short review to go with it.

 

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I am so glad that I love to read books targeted for all ages. I loved this little book. It was really cute.

 

This is a great picture books for kids, even adults. It tells you to keep trying and never give up, no matter what. This book is told in a simple way to get the point across to young readers. However, people of all ages can get something from this story.

It has a good message. It is okay to take a break when you are trying to do something, but don't stop fully. Practice does make better, if not exactly perfect.

I also really enjoyed the artwork.

 

*Provided by Netgally*