Reading Slump: Common Cures

As my fellow bookworms can tell you, two seemingly innocent words (when paired together) can instill the fear of You Know Who in each of us: READING SLUMP. I’ve had my fair share of these dreaded moods. When everything you pick up refuses to catch your eye, and it seems like you might be on the verge of the worst break up in history (between you and literature, of course).

Well, don’t fret. I have a couple tricks up my sleeve to get out of this mood quicker than Harry can disarm his opponent!

White Book Stack // Novels and Nail Polish

  1. Put down what you’re currently reading. A lot of times, when you’re not exactly feeling the book you are trying to read, you lose interest and find something else to do. It’s ok to put a book down, I promise. It doesn’t have to be for good, it just might not be the right time!
  2. Don’t read what you THINK you should be reading, read what you WANT to read. We all get caught up in peer pressure; when we feel like we should be reading more “classics” or “adult books.” PSH, you do you boo! If you want to read nothing but romance novels, DO IT. I love YA lit, and I’m proud. Read what you love because you don’t have to prove anything to anyone!
  3. Pick up an old favorite. Grabbing one of my all-time fav books, like HP or The Lunar Chronicles, reminds me why I love reading when I’m worried I’ve forgotten. You’ll be more inspired to grab a new one when you remember why you love books!
  4. And if all else fails… Don’t force it! The worst thing you can do is push yourself so hard in a direction you don’t want to go that you end up (God forbid!) resenting books! Take a break and do something else for a while. If you only read one book that month, it ain’t no thing! You’ll find your way back soon enough, us bookworms always do.

Do you have a sure-fire way to avoid the dreaded reading slump? Don’t be selfish! Share the goods in the comments below. Happy Reading!

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6 Truths I Realized While Rereading Harry Potter {Part 1}

I’m about halfway through my reread of the Harry Potter series (for the 4th or 5th time), and like always, I feel myself rediscovering the magic of this world and the talent of JK Rowling. Each time I revisit Hogwarts and the Wizarding World, the same feels and thoughts run through my head, so I’ve decided to compiled a list of these general facts. Enjoy the first installment of truths I’ve realized while rereading books 1-4.

Harry Potter Series Books 1-4 // Novels and Nail Polish

  1. “Oh snap, I hope the people around me don’t think I’m reading this book for the first time.”
  2. We laugh, we cry. But mostly, we laugh out loud. That is, until Cedric dies, and then the ratio dramatically reverses for the remainder of the series.
  3. Snape is actually a huge asshole. I love his devotion to Lily and triple agent status as much as the next fan, but in the first half of this series, he is RUDE.
  4. Oh hey, vanishing cabinet. I see you!
  5. Harry and Expelliarmus go WAY back.
  6. (This isn’t anything new but…) Every day I continue to die a little inside knowing that my Hogwarts letter hasn’t come yet.

What are some of the thoughts you always have while rereading HP? Happy Reading!

Travel Tuesday: Winter Weekend Getaways

I spent the past two weekends taking mini trips to visit people I love. First, a quick trip to Seattle with a group of sorority sisters and second, a drive up to San Francisco to visit my sister, and they were both absolutely gorgeous!

While I haven’t had much time to read or paint my nails, they still find a way to make their way into my travel adventures.

Seattle

Julep beauties on my way to Seattle
Julep beauties on my way to Seattle
Wall of Julep Polishes at the Downtown Seattle Julep Parlor
Wall of Julep Polishes at the Downtown Seattle Julep Parlor
Book stacks outside of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Book stacks outside of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

San Francisco

Beautiful book from San Fran-based publishing company, Chronicle Books
Beautiful book from San Fran-based publishing company, Chronicle Books
Gorgeous day by the Golden Gate Bridge
Gorgeous day by the Golden Gate Bridge
Local San Francisco restaurant, Kitchen Story, brings the bill on a book
Local San Francisco restaurant, Kitchen Story, brings the bill on a book

Have you gone anywhere exciting yet this year? Happy Reading!

{Man Crush Monday} Harry Potter

I think every bookworm can relate to getting the HP reread itch once every year or so. Even when you have huge TBR piles staring you in the face, you can’t help but put everything else aside and pick up your old friends… 7 of them to be exact!

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

That’s where I’m at, and I just embarked on the start of one of my favorite adventures, Year 3. And this is why today’s MCM goes out to none other than Harry himself.

Harry Potter and the Chamber of SecretsHarry isn’t perfect, he isn’t the smartest or the strongest. But that’s why I think so many people love him. He’s relatable and you want to be his friend. And reading the first couple books over has reminded me how in love with him I was when I first read the series! There is no substitution for the honest-to-goodness warmth and joy that comes with rediscovering the magic of Hogwarts and the wizarding world time and time again.

“Whether you come back by page or by the big screen, Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home.” – JK Rowling

Happy Reading!

Little Bit of Book Cover Envy

There are so many reasons I am thankful to be a citizen of the United States. As cheesy as it sounds, it really is the land of opportunity. But that doesn’t mean I don’t get a little green with envy at some of the other incredible places around the globe, especially when it come to today’s topic: International Book Editions.

Is it just me or does it seem like cover designers in other countries can be so much more creative sometimes?? Gone are the days of block letter book titles and pretty girls on the cover. While we all would love to say we try not to judge books by their covers, it happens to the best of us (and quite often)!

I’ve scrounged the internet for some of the covers I’ve seen over the years that make me cry tears of joy and jealousy!

The Lunar Chronicles 

These babies are beauties. I adore our American covers, and I didn’t think they could be outdone. Boy, was I wrong. One of the reasons I adore blogging and creating images is because of the visual effect they have on people. The German covers for this series strike a chord in me like no other cover I’ve seen. I must have them, even though I speak ZERO German!

US + Spanish + Italian + Bulgarian Covers
US + Spanish + Italian + Bulgarian Covers
German Lunar Chronicles Book Covers
The Lunar Chronicles: German Covers

The Grisha Trilogy 

When I read this trilogy by the incredible Leigh Bardugo, I fell and fell hard. Thankfully the UK covers aren’t too different, but they do have a brighter, more colorful wash to them.

The Grisha Trilogy Covers
US and UK Editions

Harry Potter

There are so many versions of the Harry Potter series that I can’t pick my favorites, although I am currently in love with my Kazu Kibuishi box set! Each cover holds its own version of magic.

UK + French +US Covers
UK + French + US Covers

My True Love Gave To Me

One book that comes to mind as we leave the holiday season is My True Love Gave To Me. It’s a compilation of adorable holiday stories, and the UK version boasts PINK-edged pages. So much book lust.

My True Love Gave To Me Covers
US and UK Edition

Are there any international covers you wish you had, even if you don’t speak the language? Happy Reading!

Seasons Readings – A Book Lover’s Gift Guide

What is a niche blog without a holiday gift guide? Not much, I can assure you! I’m happy to introduce the very first Novels and Nail Polish Gift Guide for book worms and polish lovers alike. ENJOY!

Novels and Nail Polish Gift Guide

  1. Litographs The Great Gatsby Book Poster ($24) – A good book is a work of art, but this takes it to a whole different level! The Litographs book posters use the text of classic novels and turn them into a gorgeous, visual display of the book.  Grab this for the artsy-fartsy book nerds in your life!
  2. Litographs Temporary Book Tattoo ($5/set of 2) – I adore these temporary tattoos from Litographs! I joined the lucky group of backers for their tattoo Kickstarter campaign, and am now a part of the world’s longest temporary tattoo chain. These tattoos are made to be entertainment quality, just like the ones makeup artists use in the movies and TV shows. They apply easily, and if you’re a commitment-phobe, you’ll finally be able to live out your tattoo dreams!
  3. Nails Inc Winter Wonderland ($29) – There are two main reasons I love NailsInc. One, the polishes apply beautifully. Two, their new bottles are absolutely gorgeous! I definitely bought this set for myself on Black Friday, and it is perfection for the holidays! For ladies that want to sparkle and shine their way through December, these are a must!
  4. Rifle Paper Co. Puffin in Bloom Collection ($16 each) – Those who are familiar with my previous post about cover redesigns know my love for the Anna Bond designed covers runs deep! Whether you’re looking for shelf candy or actually want to read these classics, they’re a must-have for any serious book collector.
  5. Fangirl ($19) + Mint Polish in Original Mint ($12) – If you love YA Fiction, chances are you love Rainbow Rowell, or have at least heard of her. She’s written a handful of incredibly popular and moving stories, and Fangirl was the first, and favorite, I’ve read of hers! The cover is the perfect mint, so it’s no surprise that I paired it with Mint Polish’s Original Mint! I am a huge fan of this brand and their products, and if you’re going for mint, why wouldn’t you grab it from a company who shares the name?!
  6. I’ll Give You The Sun ($18) + Essie Polishes in Capri, In The Cab-ana & Blanc ($8.50) – I’ll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson was one of the most highly anticipated YA novels of the fall. It’s two stories in one, each half told by a brother and sister. It’s high on my TBR list, especially because I already have a couple of great ideas for a cover-inspired manicure! I paired Essie polishes with it because the brand is one of my go-to lacquers. White, aqua and orange effectively capture the essence of the cover, without looking like a circus!
  7. AngeliqueInk Custom Book Stamp ($40) – I received this stamp for my birthday six months ago, and it quickly became one of my prized bookworm possessions. The simple type paired with the custom hand-lettered calligraphy embodies everything I love in design. Stamps like this will bring the biggest smile to any book hoarder in your life!
  8. R. Nichols READ Candle ($45) – How many people would raise their hand if I asked who loves the smell of libraries and old books? A TON, I’m sure. If you’re one of those bibliophiles, this beautiful book candle will be the perfect addition to your reading nook!
  9. ThinkGeek Book Pillows ($10) – Pillows are important, but they’re not all created equal. That’s where these ThinkGeek book pillows come in! This set is their holiday collection, and they’re completely and totally necessary for your next all-night read-a-thon!
  10. Hogwarts Travel Posters ($15 each) – Harry Potter. Minimalist travel posters. Enough said, my friends.

Tell me, what’s on your Christmas list? I’m always looking for more book/nail polish things to add to my already massive collections! Happy Reading!