Speaking a Second Language with Babbel


Hi Everyone! It’s a new year and like so many of you, I have a list of good intentions for this year. Notice that I used the word “intentions” and not “resolutions”. This is because resolutions are so easy to break and to fail at. But intentions are flexible, leaving room for change and allowing for growth beyond what has been “resolved”. One of my “intentions” this year is to speak a second language. I decided to try Babbel and I’m so glad I did – please read on to discover why!Read More »

Sylvia’s Lovers: An Introduction

Processed with VSCO with a5 preset

I’m hosting a readalong of Sylvia’s Lovers over on Instagram and I’d love to have you join! Please grab a copy of the book and hop on over to check out the weekly discussion posts between now and the end of November.

Hi Readers, welcome to week one of Sylvia’s Lovers! Thank you so much for joining me in reading this novel by Elizabeth Gaskell which, on first glance, seems so disparate from her other works. While Gaskell had focused on contemporary stories set either in industrial settings or sleepy countryside villages, this book is a historical tale set in an English seaside town (inspired by the real whaling village of Whitby). This novel closely parallels the whaling story found in Melville’s “Billy Budd”,  the brooding atmosphere of Emily Bronte’s “Wuthering Heights”, and the enduring passions of Charlotte Bronte’s “Jane Eyre”. It is to Gaskell’s credit that she could be so heavily inspired by her peers, and yet create an original work that, while it reflects those influences, turns them into a story uniquely its own.Read More »

Midweek Links 7.25.18 (Christmas in July Special Edition!)

Christmas Wreath

Hi Everyone! Can you believe we are exactly 5 months away from Christmas? Procrastinator that I am, I tend to think that anything more than two weeks out gives me SO much time to get things done. Haha, I know myself better than that, but I like to lie to myself every.single.time. In order to try and inspire myself to think ahead and be more prepared for the holidays than I usually am, I thought it would be fun to feature some Christmas links today!Read More »

Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell

IMG_9273Last month, I hosted a readalong of Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell on Instagram. It’s always exciting to read a favorite author’s works with other people because there are always different perspectives and observations on a novel that readers bring to a discussion. I’ve decided to start sharing my notes and discussion questions on my blog so that I can easily come back and reference it if I ever want to. It is also my hope that the research I’ve done on the novel will benefit other Cranford readers.Read More »

Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult Book Review

Processed with VSCO with a5 presetHi Everyone! It’s been awhile, hasn’t it? I have been very busy with substitute teaching, applying for teaching jobs, and living life. I’m usually exhausted by nighttime, so I’ve loved this book that Penguin/Random House sent my way to review. You guys, a medical, judicial, and race relations story that addresses topics so relevant to what is happening in America right now just can’t be resisted. I would sink against my pillows and flip the pages eagerly, reading on to see what happened next in the saga of a nurse accused of negligent homicide by a white supremacist. Obviously there’s more to the story than those bare facts, but I never like writing too much of the plot because I hate spoiling the reading experience for everyone. Let me instead list what I loved (and maybe loved a bit less) about the book.Read More »