First of all, happy Spring y’all! I’m feeling so incredibly happy lately with the warmer days and all the pretty flowers blooming that I wanted to pass that feeling to you! I want to send you all love, and I truly hope you are all happy and feeling well.
Well, going back to today’s post: you know what’s coming – well, you read the title. Today I’m bringing you my TBR list for April! I admit March was an okay reading month, but not the way I planned. I read a few books, but I wasn’t able to finish all the books I wanted! My Wrap Up is coming soon and I’ll tell you all about it.
But since it wasn’t a month like I planned, I’m trying something different for April.
As you know, every month I create a 5 book TBR list monthly, which will include: 2 printed copies, 2 audiobooks and 1 ebook. The thing is, my physical copies are piling up because I wasn’t able to finish them all yet! So since I still have a few physical books to finish, my TBR for this month is going to be mostly audiobooks – with a single physical copy in the mix! I hope with this decision I will be able to balance things a little and catch up with my physical reads!
So, without further ado, here are the books I’m planning on reading this next month:
Why We Sleep by Mathew Walker, PhD We are starting strong with my first audiobook pick of my TBR: “Why We Sleep” by Matthew Walker. I’ve always liked to pick up random non-fiction books about random topics because I always learn a lot! I’ve heard great things about this book and I’m looking forward to learning a few new things about sleep. I’ll let you know if it’s worth it!
As Filhas da Floresta (El Bosque Sabe Tu Nombre) by Alaitz Leceaga This is the physical copy of the month! Unfortunately this book doesn’t have an English version available – it is only available in Portuguese (my copy’s language) and Spanish (the original version). I have had this book on my shelf for soooo long and now it’s time to give it a go. I admit I don’t know a lot about it, except that it’s a fantasy book about two twin sisters. I’m excited to see what it’s all about!
Me by Elton John I’m embarrassed to say I don’t know much about Sir Elton John. So I thought this would be a great opportunity to learn more about him and his life! So there you go – this is my second audiobook pick for April!
Blade of Secrets (Bladesmith #1) by Tricia Levenseller Tricia Levenseller is an amazing writer, and I truly love her young adult fantasy books. This the first book in a (fairly) new duology and I’m very excited to pick it up! I love to read book series, but I often don’t pick them up because I get bored easily if the series is huge. So duologies are perfect for me! I’ll let you know what I think of this one.
Once Upon a K-Prom by Kat Cho My fourth audiobook of the list is a book I tried to read before but never finished: it’s the book “Once Upon a K-Prom” by Kat Cho. I’m a huge K-Pop fan, so I’ve had this book in my TBR for a while now. I believe this is about two teens that were best friends since they were kids, and they promised each other they would go to prom together when they grow up. The boy grew up and became a big k-pop star and he comes back to his hometown and asks the girl out! I’m very excited for this one, I believe this is going to be a fun read.
Aaaand there you have it friends, my TBR list for April! As usual, I hope you liked this post! Let me know if you read any of these or if you have any recommendations for me. You know I’m always grateful for those!
I hope you are doing well and I hope you’re having a great day! Intriguing title right? I think it’s better to give you a little context first so you’ll understand the inspiration behind this blog post.
The pandemic completely changed my life in very different ways – some bigger than others, of course -, and one of the things that happened is that I’ve become a huge fan of k-pop and k-dramas. What are those, you may ask? K-pop is korean pop music and k-dramas are korean soap operas!
The funny thing is that I never understood the hype around both of those things. I never hated it, but I just didn’t understand it and why people were obsessed with it. But one faithful day I went down the rabbit hole… and I never came back!
I can honestly say that these amazing things that I discovered during that time gave me a lot of happiness and helped me go through those hard times. And so a new love began! After listening to a good amount of k-pop and swooning my way through a few k-dramas, I started diving into books inspired by them – as a dedicated reader should!
So here we are today! I decided to honor my love for k-pop and k-dramas through today’s recommendation post, and I hope you enjoy it! Here are today’s recommendations:
Good looking list, right? Let’s dive into them individually!
1. Bias: A K-Pop Romance by Lucy Gold
This was my first ever k-pop inspired read and it was everything I ever hoped for! This is a typical romance between a fan and her bias (her favorite person in a k-pop group). It was romantic, super cute and fluffy and as a plus… there was a lot of food talk! I kept getting hungry while I was reading this book! I believe this is a great option for k-pop lovers! Definitely recommend it.
“K-pop star Wooyeong is hot, talented, and jaded from his fame. He’s also dead-set on one unwritten rule: Dating a fan would be social suicide. So why can’t he stop thinking about her? American fan Madison has just moved to Seoul, South Korea. It seems like every fan’s dream come true when, by a one-in-a-million chance encounter, she finds herself sitting across from her bias, the idol Wooyeong. Little does she know things have only gotten more complicated… This snowy Korean romance by debut author Lucy Gold is sure to be a new favorite for K-pop fans and romantic souls alike.”
2. XOXO by Axie Oh
Another book I loved is the amazing “XOXO” by Axie Oh! This is more of a kpop themed book with a forbidden romance. Starring an average girl who plays the cello and a Kpop idol from a boy group, this story is every kpop fan’s dream! They both attend the same fancy music school in Seoul and, of course, after they meet they fall in love. But like it would probably happen in real life, Jaewoo (the kpop star) can’t start any dating scandals. What I liked about this book is that it has a really good balance of fluff and seriousness. Also, the setting is very fun and it’s cool how they kept bumping into each other at school. It was a very light and fun read for me! Definitely recommend this one. You can find my full review of this book here and the synopsis below.
“Cello prodigy Jenny has one goal: to get into a prestigious music conservatory. When she meets mysterious, handsome Jaewoo in her uncle’s Los Angeles karaoke bar, it’s clear he’s the kind of boy who would uproot her careful plans. But in a moment of spontaneity, she allows him to pull her out of her comfort zone for one unforgettable night of adventure…before he disappears without a word. Three months later, when Jenny and her mother arrive in South Korea to take care of her ailing grandmother, she’s shocked to discover that Jaewoo is a student at the same elite arts academy where she’s enrolled for the semester. And he’s not just any student. He’s a member of one of the biggest K-pop bands in the world—and he’s strictly forbidden from dating. When a relationship means throwing Jenny’s life off the path she’s spent years mapping out, she’ll have to decide once and for all just how much she’s willing to risk for love.”
3. Once Upon a K-Prom by Kat Cho
This is a good option if you prefer a Korean-American book. The reason for this is because iIt has k-pop… but it also has a very American prom! This is also a really cute book because the main characters were childhood best friends, but the boy grew up and became a big k-pop star. When they were little they promised each other they would go to prom together, so the girl was shocked to find her long lost best friend standing at her door with a rose in his hand and asking her to go to prom with him. Like I said, this is a very cute book as well and I loved the characters! You can check the synopsis below for more info.
“What would you do if the world’s biggest K-pop star asked you to prom? Perfect for fans of Jenny Han and Sandhya Menon, this hilarious and heartfelt novel brings the glamour and drama of the K-pop world straight to high school. Elena Soo has always felt overshadowed. Whether by her more successful older sisters, her more popular twin brother, or her more outgoing best friend, everyone except Elena seems to know exactly who they are and what they want. But she is certain about one thing – she has no interest in going to prom. While the rest of the school is giddy over corsages and dresses, Elena would rather spend her time working to save the local community center, the one place that’s always made her feel like she belonged. So when international K-pop superstar Robbie Choi shows up at her house to ask her to prom, Elena is more confused than ever. Because the one person who always accepted Elena as she is? Her childhood best friend, Robbie Choi. And the one thing she maybe, possibly, secretly wants more than anything? For the two of them to keep the promise they made each other as kids: to go to prom together. But that was seven years ago, and with this new K-pop persona, pink hair, and stylish clothes, Robbie is nothing like the sweet, goofy boy she remembers. The boy she shared all her secrets with. The boy she used to love. Besides, prom with a guy who comes with hordes of screaming fans, online haters, and relentless paparazzi is the last thing Elena wants – even if she can’t stop thinking about Robbie’s smile…right?”
4. Flip the Script by Lyla Lee
My first k-drama recommendation of this list is “Flip the Script” by Lyla Lee. This a very cool read because the main character goes from a k-drama watcher to actually starring a role in a k-drama! This book is a queer YA romance between two girls, and you can find the synopsis below!
“The first rule of watching K-dramas: Never fall in love with the second lead. As an avid watcher of K-dramas, Hana knows all the tropes to avoid when she finally lands a starring role in a buzzy new drama. And she can totally handle her fake co-star boyfriend who might be falling in love with her. After all, she promised the producers a contract romance, and that’s all they’re going to get from her. But when showrunners bring on a new girl to challenge Hana’s role as main love interest—and worse, it’s someone Hana knows all too well—can Hana fight for her position on the show while falling for her on-screen rival in real life?”
5. Seoulmates by Susan Lee
Nate, one of the characters of this book, is just like me: obsessed with k-pop and k-dramas! But not Hannah. And this book is great exactly for that: it’s very different and out of the box! This is more of a k-drama inspired book, but also it’s mostly a coming of age story with romance! Definitely worth checking out. Check the synopsis below if you’re curious!
“Hannah Cho had the next year all planned out—the perfect summer with her boyfriend, Nate, and then a fun senior year with their friends. But then Nate does what everyone else in Hannah’s life seems to do—he leaves her, claiming they have nothing in common. He and all her friends are newly obsessed with K-pop and K-dramas, and Hannah is not. After years of trying to embrace the American part and shunning the Korean side of her Korean American identity to fit in, Hannah finds that’s exactly what now has her on the outs. But someone who does know K-dramas—so well that he’s actually starring in one—is Jacob Kim, Hannah’s former best friend, whom she hasn’t seen in years. He’s desperate for a break from the fame, so a family trip back to San Diego might be just what he needs… that is, if he and Hannah can figure out what went wrong when they last parted and navigate the new feelings developing between them. Her ex-boyfriend wants her back. Her former best friend is in town. When did Hannah’s life become a K-drama?”
And there you have it friends! These are some kpop/kdrama inspired books I loved and will always recommend to my bookish friends. I hope you found this recommendation post interesting and I hope you found yourself some new books to read! As usual, I’m always looking for book recommendations so let me know if you have any for me!
“I began to understand that we were born in order to see and listen to the world. And that’s all this world wants of us. It doesn’t matter that I was never a teacher or a member of the workforce, my life had meaning.” – 4.25/5 stars!
Attention! This book contains: cherry blossoms, new recipes, drinking problems, new employees, discrimination, dorayaki, debt, caged birds, depression, school girls, Hansen’s disease and, of course, sweet bean paste.
Sentaro has failed. He has a criminal record, drinks too much, and his dream of becoming a writer is just a distant memory. With only the blossoming of the cherry trees to mark the passing of time, he spends his days in a tiny confectionery shop selling dorayaki, a type of pancake filled with sweet bean paste.
But everything is about to change.
Into his life comes Tokue, an elderly woman with disfigured hands and a troubled past. Tokue makes the best sweet bean paste Sentaro has ever tasted. She begins to teach him her craft, but as their friendship flourishes, social pressures become impossible to escape and Tokue’s dark secret is revealed, with devastating consequences.
Sweet Bean Paste is a moving novel about the burden of the past and the redemptive power of friendship. Translated into English for the first time, Durian Sukegawa’s beautiful prose is capturing hearts all over the world.
I got this book as a gift, knowing absolutely nothing about it. So thank you gifter, I ended up being very surprised with how good the story was! It was the perfect way to start my 2023 reading year, and if I’m lucky… hopefully this sets the tone for the entire year – well, I can dream!
So what is this book about? In a nutshell, I would say it’s about social discrimination, improbable friendships and learning how to be patient and listen. Ah yes, and the making of sweet bean paste, of course!
I’m probably spoiling the book (just a little) in the next sentences, so be aware of that! Tokue is the old lady Sentaro hired to work with him in the dorayaki cafe, but she is constantly being discriminated against for being sick in the past. This happened ever since she was a teenager, when she first got sick. The thing is: she is not sick anymore. She hasn’t been sick for a very long time, but since she has a lot of physical damage on the visible parts of her body, the customers don’t want to be near her. It’s a tough book to read sometimes because it breaks my heart that some people go through this.
What also makes this book so great – besides the message – is the powerful combination of amazing characters and immersive writing. The characters were amazing and I truly loved every single one of them. My favorite was Tokue, of course. She is a very kind-hearted character, full of wisdom. One of my favorite things about the book is how Tokue constantly tells Sentaro to listen to things and to be patient.
The writing is very immersive and atmospheric. There are plenty of sensorial descriptions throughout the book – such as food, weather, etc. -, and I believe that added an extra layer of greatness to the book.
I just love how timeless this book feels. It felt like I was reading a classic book, and it would still make sense to read it in 100 years. Also, thanks to this book I was able to learn about Hansen’s disease and how it impacted Japan.
I honestly can’t recommend this book enough. Even though it was a heartbreaking kind of book, I still loved everything about it and I’m sure the story is going to stay with me for a long time. I am curious about the movie adaptation.
Oh yeah, and now I want a (high quality) dorayaki.
Sometimes our goals seem like unobtainable fantasies, but the key to success is making motivational thinking part of everyday life. In Get Up & Do It! Beechy and Josephine Colclough explain how to develop a plan to achieve your goals by planning, practising and adopting positive thinking, as well as motivational and other problem-solving skills. With Get Up and Do It! you’ll be able to decide what you want to achieve and why, and then create a ‘can do’ frame of mind. Based on the BBC book of the same name, this audio version is presented by the authors. Beechy and Josephine Colclough are chartered psychotherapists. Beechy is well known for his work with celebrities, including Elton John, Robbie Williams and Caroline Aherne….
It was a nice, condensed book, but I personally didn’t learn anything new. I would say this is more appropriate for people who are starting to get into the self-development world and could use some help with setting new goals and figuring out how to achieve them.
With that said, I still found this book inspiring. Reading this reignited my motivation to achieve my personal goals and do some planning!
It’s a nice book to get some instant motivation and to review some well-known concepts. It has good advice and the audiobook version is short (about 2h), so you’ll listen to it in no time.
“An audience can go back and watch a film any number of times they want. It’s always there for them. For the cast and crew, the relationship with a film is more complex. The magic is in the making, and that process is a discreet unit of time in the past. You can reflect on that unit of time, you can be proud of it, but you can’t revisit it.” – 3.75/5 stars!
Attention! This book contains: long trains, amazing performances, perfect roles, child actors, old friendships, rehabilitation centers, a lot of magic and several “breaths of fresh air”.
They called for a break, and Gambon magicked up a cigarette from out of his beard. He and I were often to be found outside the stage door, having ‘a breath of fresh air’, as we referred to it. There would be painters and plasterers and chippies and sparks, and among them all would be me and Dumbledore having a crafty cigarette.
From Borrower to wizard, Tom Felton’s adolescence was anything but ordinary. His early rise to fame saw him catapulted into the limelight aged just twelve when he landed the iconic role of Draco Malfoy in the Harry Potter films.
Speaking with candour and his own trademark humour, Tom shares his experience of growing up on screen and as part of the wizarding world for the very first time. He tells all about his big break, what filming was really like and the lasting friendships he made during ten years as part of the franchise, as well as the highs and lows of fame and the reality of navigating adult life after filming finished.
Prepare to meet a real-life wizard.
This was a very pleasant reading experience! I truly enjoyed this more than I thought I would and I flew through the pages in no time. In this memoir, Tom Felton takes us through his personal journey, starting from the moment he became a child actor to his most recent struggles with addiction. This book was mostly focused on his work as an actor, but we also get a glimpse of his childhood and the years after the Harry Potter movies were shot. A big part of the book is what we already expected: a lot of Harry Potter set stories and fun moments shared with the rest of the cast. I enjoyed these chapters the most because we get so many fun stories! Tom was born to play Draco. Just like Daniel, Rupert and Emma were perfect for the roles of Harry, Ron and Hermione, Tom was a perfect Draco. The casting directors did an amazing job finding kids that acted like their characters! Tom speaks very fondly of his castmates and it was a joy to listen! I came to the conclusion that what makes this memoir so cool – besides all the cool Harry Potter references, of course – is Tom’s honesty. He seems like a very sweet and down-to-Earth person, and he is very appreciative of everyone around him. I had no idea he went to rehab, or even that he had a problem with substance abuse. Fortunately he didn’t give up and he went through the recovery process! He talks about his problems very openly, and I appreciate his honesty as a reader. This is a great book for Harry Potter fans for obvious reasons, but now I have a new respect for Tom. I’m surprised by his talent, honesty and personality. Definitely worth checking out!
“When you make the commitment and take action, The Universe will bend over backwards to help you achieve your goals.” – 3.5/5 stars!
Attention! This book contains: This book contains: Tony Robbins’ courses, lists of goals, beach breaks, ski trips, philanthropy, beautiful views, supporting wives, triathlons in Hawaii, new jobs and new lives.
When you read VisualFestation you will see that it is a guide book telling you how to manifest the life of your dreams. Going beyond other books on the law of attraction, the Author has successfully used these techniques and habits to manifest miracles in his own life. As you read Visualfestation and hear the stories, you will acquire all of the tools you need to bring your vision of a dream life to your reality now.
This small book is full of great knowledge! If you’re not familiar with the contents of this book, this is essentially a law of attraction/manifestation book – and a good one, if I may add! Personally for me this was more of an inspiring read instead of a learning read, because I’m already familiar with the topics that were mentioned in the book. With that being said, I believe this small book is perfect for everyone who is interested in learning the foundations of manifestation. The author also shares his personal experiences and how he was able to change his life, so I believe this is great motivation for readers. It is always inspiring and interesting to see how other people manifest the amazing things they have in life, and how they decided to inspire others to do the same! I listened to this book in the audiobook format, and this is the format I would recommend if you decide to pick this up! It’s only a 2-hour reading, so it’s definitely worth it!
“One should not make a pet out of a wild beast.” – 4.75/5 stars!
Attention! This book contains: damsels, amber eyes, hawks, baby lynxes, falcons, gems, dreams, lost memories, dry meat, secrets, dragons, sweet maids, red hair and glass eyes.
The rite has existed for as long as anyone can remember: when the prince-who-will-be-king comes of age, he must venture out into the gray lands, slay a fierce dragon, and rescue a damsel to be his bride. This is the way things have always been.
When Ama wakes in the arms of Prince Emory, however, she knows none of this. She has no memory of what came before she was captured by the dragon, or what horrors she has faced in its lair. She knows only this handsome prince, the story he tells of her rescue, and her destiny to sit on the throne beside him. Ama comes with Emory back to the kingdom of Harding, hailed as the new princess, welcomed to the court.
However, as soon as her first night falls, she begins to realize that not all is as it seems, that there is more to the legends of the dragons and the damsels than anyone knows–and that the greatest threats to her life may not be behind her, but here, in front of her.
This book. Wow, what a masterpiece. By far one of my favorite books I’ve read this year!
You would think “what could possibly go wrong with what looks like your typical happy-ending fairy tale?”. Well, in this case, everything goes wrong. “Damsel” is a very dark and twisted novel, with no hint of humor in it.
The book tells the story of a damsel who was rescued by a prince, after he defeated the dragon. She doesn’t remember anything before her rescue, so she trusts the prince and returns home with him to be his bride. The only problem is… she doesn’t want to be his bride. So of course, things get very ugly, very fast. She is controlled, abused, humiliated and she has to follow his orders even if she doesn’t want to. She keeps trying to remember her past and she soon finds out that there are a lot of things the prince hid from her…
The synopsis caught my attention, so I knew I had to pick this up… and I’m really glad I did. I was hooked to the story from the start and I was intrigued to know how it would all end. My favorite thing about it is how the entire book is a giant metaphor! The way the prince tries to tame her, discipline her and make something of her that she isn’t was heartbreaking. The only thing I’m going to say about that, is that this is a true feminist book.
I really liked the characters in this! For the first time ever, I found a book character that I really disliked. I hated Emory with every fiber of my being, and that was very refreshing! I really liked how unlikeable he was. His friend was also trash.
The ONLY thing that I wasn’t a fan of (and what stopped me from giving 5 stars to this book) was the way Emory defeated the dragon (the third weapon situation). I just can’t wrap my head around it and it still doesn’t make sense to me. But I decided to see it also as a metaphor. Still, I was really satisfied with the ending! Kudos to the author.
The book made me feel angry and sad and heartbroken for Ama, but it was completely worth the read. I wouldn’t recommend this to a younger audience/kids because of the heavier topics, such as sexual assault and abuse. But it’s an incredible book for an older audience!
This year is flying by and I can’t believe we’re already in March! That’s crazy to me because I feel like New Year’s Eve was about 2 or 3 weeks ago. What is going on? What kind of sorcery is this?
Anyways, I digress (as usual).
How are you doing today? I hope you are good and staying healthy! Are you ready to see what I read in February? I’m excited for this Wrap Up because I read amazing books this month and I can’t wait to share them with you. This past month went very well and I ended up reading some fairly new releases – by new I mean relesed in the past year. I gravitated mostly towards non-fiction and fantasy this month, so as you’ll see all the books are within these categories.
Ok, let’s take a look at the books:
The Death Cure (The Maze Runner #3) by James Dashner: 3.5/5⭐
The Kill Order (The Maze Runner #0.4) by James Dashner: 3.5/5⭐
The Freshman (College Years #1) by Monica Murphy: 2.75/5⭐
How to Be Perfect by Michael Schur: 4.25/5⭐
The Office BFFs by Jenna Fischer & Angela Kinsley: 4/5⭐
Beyond the Wand by Tom Felton: 3.75/5⭐
Like I said, I originally planned on reading 5 books in January and some of the books I read this month were part of that list. The book Sweet Bean Paste is a book written by a Japanese author and it was absolutely beautiful. The story was heartbreaking, but it was so worth it!
Another book I read was the second book in the Maze Runner series, The Scorch Trials! This was actually a reread because I read this for the first time a few years ago. I wanted to revisit this story and I’m loving it so far!
The other book I finished in January was The Girl Who Speaks Bear! I started this fantasy/middle grade book in 2022, but I made it my mission to finish it in January. The story is very well made! It may be a middle grade book, but the story is complex and full of magic! I really love Sophie Anderson’s books and I will always recommend them to other readers.
The one book that was a bit of a disappointment was The Freshman by Monica Murphy. I can’t exactly pinpoint what I didn’t love about this romance, but something felt off. I was hoping this would be more of a fun read, but it wasn’t exactly that. Still, it wasn’t terrible.
I’ll be posting the reviews for these books soon!
What about you guys? How was your reading month? Let me know in the comments! Thank you for reading friends, I’ll catch you guys later!