Checking In!

Usually Tuesdays are for Top Ten Tuesdays, but today I wanted to switch things up a bit. Today’s post is to check in! I’ll share with you what I’ve been reading, watching, and enjoying lately, and I hope you’ll do the same with me in the comments!


Lately I’ve been reading a non-fiction book, JUNIPER: THE GIRL WHO WAS BORN TOO SOON by Kelley French and Thomas French.

It’s the story of Juniper French, who was born at the very early 23 weeks gestation. She weighed 1 pound and 4 ounces. Her parents, Kelley and Thomas chose to fight for her life.

It’s a story that as soon as I heard about it, I had to immediately move it to the top of my TBR. As you may know from my last post, I’m currently pregnant. I’m currently 17 weeks along to be more exact. This story just called to me. I put in a request at my library, and some very long weeks later, it was finally available for pick up!

So that’s what I’m reading right now. It’s proving to be quite the emotional read, but I’m really enjoying it. What are you currently reading?


I haven’t been watching much on television, but there are a few movies that I absolutely cannot wait for!

Pictures courtesy of

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Assassin’s Creed. I cannot wait to see these movies! What movies are on your ‘Must See’ lists?


I have three projects in progress right now.

1. I have the body of a baby blanket knit. There are some steps in the pattern regarding the border of the blanket that I don’t know how to do yet, so I’m stalled there for now.

2. I’m also in the middle of knitting a baby hat. This and the aforementioned blanket are both for my baby. My husband chose the yarn colors for the hat and that makes it really special. Mom made it and Dad picked out the yarn. I can’t wait for him/her to wear it!

3. Christmas knitting! I’m not going to go into too much detail here but I’ve started knitting Christmas gifts for friends and family.

4. I bought three craft pumpkins from Michael’s. A big, medium, and small one. I plan to paint my husbands name on the big, my name on the medium, and the baby’s name on the small. We’re going to use that as our name reveal photo. Request to follow me on Instagram to see the finished product in early November!

I’ve also been practicing hand lettering again. I’d like to incorporate that skill into the name reveal for the baby. What crafts are you currently working on, if any?


  • We find out the baby’s gender at the end of the month! I cannot wait! I’m so, so eager to know what we’re having!
  • I am fully and completely unpacked, finally! Now I’m in desperate need for wall art.
  • Hockey starts up this week! I’m so ready. Summer is so long without hockey.
  • IT’S FALL!!! October is definitely one of my favorite months. I’ve started decorating for Halloween and I’m so pleased with how it’s coming along.

What’s going on with you lately?

Chat with me in the comments! What are you reading? How are you? What movies are you looking forward to seeing? I look forward to talking to you!


Children’s Book Review: LITTLE ELLIOT, BIG FUN by Mike Curato

Published: August 30 2016
Pages: 40
Goodreads Synopsis: Little Elliot, the polka-dotted elephant, and his friend Mouse go to the amusement park to see the sights and ride the rides—water chutes, roller coasters, carousels, and more. But Elliot isn’t having much fun—the rides are too wet, too fast, too dizzy, and just plain too scary—until Mouse figures out a way to help him overcome his fears. Together, Mouse and Little Elliot can do anything!

LITTLE ELLIOT, BIG FUN is the third book in the Elliot series by Mike Curato. It follows best friends Elliot and Mouse as they visit an amusement park. At first Elliot become overwhelmed with the daunting rides and attractions. Mouse rectifies the situation by finding a ride that is more Elliots pace. Once comfortable, Elliot is open to trying new rides and it results in them having a great time.

This was a super fun read. I love how real of an issue it deals with. The issue happens to be prominent in my day to day life. Being overwhelmed and experiencing anxiety is real and it’s OK to remove yourself if you have those feelings. It’s OK to be scared. I love that Mike tackles that issue.

The illustrations in this book are gorgeous as always. Does not disappoint. I especially love the scenic view from the ferris wheel at the end. I also found it clever that the pages flip out as Elliot uncovers his eyes, so you’re seeing at the same time. It’s a little bit smoother than turning to the next page. The flip out pages open up to the scenic view from the ferris wheel I was talking about and it’s breathtaking.

I really loved this book! I can’t wait for the next Elliot book from Mike Curato. I also can’t wait to share these Elliot books with my little baby. (Due in March 2017!)

Thanks so much for stopping by and reading my review! Have you read the Elliot series? What are your favorite picture books? Chat with me in the comments down below.


Young Adult Review: MARIE ANTOINETTE, SERIAL KILLER by Katie Alender

Published: September 24 2013
Pages: 296
Source/Format: Library / Hardcover
Goodreads Synopsis: Colette Iselin is excited to go to Paris on a class trip. She’ll get to soak up the beauty and culture, and maybe even learn something about her family’s French roots.

But a series of gruesome murders are taking place across the city, putting everyone on edge. And as she tours museums and palaces, Colette keeps seeing a strange vision: a pale woman in a ball gown and powdered wig, who looks suspiciously like Marie Antoinette.

Colette knows her popular, status-obsessed friends won’t believe her, so she seeks out the help of a charming French boy. Together, they uncover a shocking secret involving a dark, hidden history. When Colette realizes she herself may hold the key to the mystery, her own life is suddenly in danger . . .

MARIE ANTOINETTE, SERIAL KILLER has to be one of my favorites from Katie Alender. (Though I did enjoy BAD GIRLS DON’T DIE) It was a fast and mysterious read! It read like a contemporary – fast and short!

The mystery of this book was a very good one. I became emotionally attached to the main character, Colette, and I cared about what was happening. I also really love Marie Antoinette, so it was fun to read a fiction about her! I loved that the facts included were mostly accurate and that Alender was able to craft a story about actual history. The plot woven was a good one, in my opinion. It was heartfelt and certainly seemed plausible.

I loved that this novel was set in Paris! (ANNA AND THE FRENCH KISS by Stephanie Perkins inspired me to learn some French) The French I had learned really helped with the reading of this book. There is a decent amount of French dialogue and only some of it is translated. Some can be deciphered via context, but not all. Luckily I had that little advantage. I suggest having a French dictionary on hand if you’re really curious.

I always expect to be creeped out with Katie Alender’s books and I am always left disappointed, so I went into this one without that expectation. Because of that, I think I enjoyed it more for the mystery that it was. It didn’t feel like a horror story to me because I wasn’t creeped out, but I really enjoyed the mystery.

I was pleased with the story arc. It grew and ended in places that I’m happy with. I love the growth of each of the characters and I love the resolution of the mystery. It was a very good read. I recommend this to Marie Antoinette fans, mystery lovers, and Paris fanatics.

The romance in this book started and remained subtle. I loved that I could enjoy that little bit of romance while also trying to solve the mystery and get a decent amount of Marie Antoinette in the foreground.

In conclusion, I enjoyed MARIE ANTOINETTE, SERIAL KILLER for it’s fast pace, great mystery, Paris setting, and the ghost of Marie Antoinette. I awarded this book with three stars.

Katie Alender (rhymes with “calendar”!) grew up in South Florida. She is the third of four children (three girls and a boy) and the child of three very loving and encouraging parents.

She attended high school at the Palm Beach County School of the Arts, studying Communication Arts. From there, she went on to the Florida State University Film School, which led her to her current hometown, a tiny hamlet on the West Coast known as “Los Angeles.”

She enjoys writing, reading, sewing (especially quilts), gardening, photography, and hanging out with her husband, her daughter, and her dogs, Scooter and Frodo.

Follow Katie: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Tumblr | Wattpad

Thanks for stopping by and reading my review of MARIE ANTOINETTE, SERIAL KILLER. Are you a fan of horror? Read any good horror books lately?

– Elizabeth


There’s no denying that posts here on Book Yabber haven’t been as regular as they normally are. I usually post book reviews every Thursdays and I participate in Top Ten Tuesdays a few weeks every month. Lately I’ve missed quite a few Thursdays. I have a good reason though!

I want to thank those that have hung around. It means so much to me that you enjoy my content enough to wait out this dry patch. I want to hug you! THANK YOU SO MUCH!

The reason I’ve been MIA for so long is I’ve been very sick. Don’t worry, it’s not serious. It’s not even something I’m upset about. This sickness is most commonly referred to as morning sickness and it’s due to a change in hormone levels. Confusing name, at least for me, as it seemed to be worse at night. It’s because I’m pregnant! I’m currently 15 weeks and 3 days along – so very close to the half way point. I’ve been experiencing migraines and nausea and honestly, it’s been pretty rough. For the first three months, it was pretty constant – from the time I wake until the time I lay down for bed. I couldn’t read. I couldn’t use the computer. Surprisingly the TV didn’t bother me. So I was laid out on the couch (and the bathroom) for months catching up on shows. (Mostly Spongebob Squarepants. LOL.)

Now, as I’m in my second trimester, I’m starting to feel better. It’s not completely gone and some days are better than others. I’ve picked up a few books since then and the reading doesn’t bother me… I just seem to be in a colossal reading slump! I’m trying to get myself out of it. I have been reading aloud to my little bundle of joy though, so expect to see some picture book reviews in the near future!

In the coming weeks, I will probably share some bump photos and picture books I’m reading on my Instagram. My Instagram is a private profile, just send me an email or leave me a comment with your username if you’d like to be accepted.

As for blog posts, I’ll be participating more in Top Ten Tuesdays, The Marauders are due for another adventure (Fall is the perfect time for that around New England!), and picture book reviews (more will come once I get myself out of this slump). Husband and I are taking our “babymoon” in a few weeks where I plan to attend a YA book event, so I’ll gladly write up a recap about that event. Let me know if there are any discussion points you’d like to hear from me. Also, let me know if you have any other post suggestions in general!

Again, thank you so, so much for sticking with me. I’ll try my hardest to schedule as many posts as I can in the future!


Horror Reading Challenge: Third Quarter Update

We’re a third through the Horror Reading Challenge of 2016 (hosted by Tracey of Cornerfolds and Lilyn of Sci-Fi and Scary). So far I’ve read 12 out of my goal of 16! I only have four more to read! I think I have them all planned out, too. Let’s take a look at what I’ve read so far.

5 Star Reads

Click the cover for my review!

4 Star Reads

3 Star Reads

2 Star Read

1 Star Read

Those are the 12 that I’ve read so far, broken up by rating. You can follow my progress here!

Here’s what I plan to read before the end of the year:

Thanks for following my progress! Are you participating in a reading challenge this year? What’s the challenge? How are you doing in that challenge? Let me know in the comments below!

– Elizabeth


Published: April 1 2013
Pages: 140
Goodreads Synopsis: Night for Noah Bienstock is a scary time. He keeps having the scariest dream that he’s being hunted by a monster and can’t escape. Daytime isn’t much better for Noah, a shy, lonely 6th grader. But then Noah meets Monroe Sternom, the new kid in town. Monroe is assigned the seat next to Noah in school and they instantly hit it off. But there are some strange things about Monroe. Can he trust Monroe with the details of his dream? Noah must do what ever it takes to make sure his nightmares don’t come true!
Source/Format: Library / Paperback.

A story wherein I find myself laughing. . .often. There’s a character who has a voracious appetite and is seen walking through the mall devouring an entire bag of chips. I don’t know why, but I laughed super hard at that. As for the scary. . . it fell short. There had been an element of fear in the previous two Most Wanted books, but not an ounce in this one. Maybe I’m just personally more frightened by lawn gnomes that animate and wreck havoc or ventriloquist dummies. There was no fear for me.

That being said, the twist was awesome and quite frankly the best part of the book. I didn’t see the twist coming at all, but gosh, was it great! I don’t know if I’d say I’m glad I stuck with it but it’s such a short book, but the twist was gratifying.

I rated it 2 Stars. How I Met My Monster was a fast and funny read with a twist that will make you ask, “LOL, Why didn’t I see that?”

R. L. Stine began his writing career when he was nine years old, and today he has achieved the position of the bestselling children’s author in history. In the early 1990s, Stine was catapulted to fame when he wrote the unprecedented, bestselling Goosebumps® series, which sold more than 250 million copies and became a worldwide multimedia phenomenon. His other major series, Fear Street, has over 80 million copies sold.

Stine has received numerous awards of recognition, including several Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Awards and Disney Adventures Kids’ Choice Awards, and he has been selected by kids as one of their favorite authors in the NEA’s Read Across America program. He lives in New York, NY.

Follow R.L.Stine: Website | Twitter | Facebook

Thanks so much for stopping by and reading my review of HOW I MET MY MONSTER. Have you been reading the GOOSEBUMPS: MOST WANTED series? What’s your favorite of the series?

– Elizabeth

Top Ten Favorite Contemporary Books Of All Time!

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature created and hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. This week’s topic is Top Ten All Time Favorite Books of X Genre. I chose to work within the contemporary genre today! Without further delay, here’s my list, in no particular order!

10. THE LIFE AND DEATH OF CHARLIE ST. CLOUD by Ben Sherwood (Goodreads) – It’s been many, many years since I’ve read this book, yet when I sat down to compile my favorite contemporaries of all time, this one came immediately back to me. This book touched my heart and I cried many a tears while reading. It’s an incredible book about healing after a devastating loss of a beloved brother.

9. MOONGLASS by Jessi Kirby (Goodreads – MOONGLASS is a book that I often think about. Every time I see a piece of sea glass or whenever I’m near water. It resonated deep with me. I have actually felt a deep pull to re-read this book lately – I hope I get the chance to do so soon. This is a heavy contemporary read dealing with the loss of a mother and the family secrets left behind in her wake. It’s beautifully written and packed with emotion.

8. ELEANOR AND PARK by Rainbow Rowell (Goodreads) – Here’s a book that is no stranger to being featured on this blog – I’m sure you’ll recognize a bunch more. This was the first book of Rainbow Rowell’s I’ve read. I loved the diverse cast of characters and I loved the love story that sparked. That and Rainbow’s beautiful writing, of course. This is a book that will take your bad situation and show you the light. It’s not predictable in the slightest and I think that’s what makes it feel so real.

7. THE BELL JAR by Sylvia Plath (Goodreads) – THE BELL JAR is absolutely a favorite of mine – I re-read it at least once every year. I read this book at a time where I absolutely needed it and completely without knowing. I do believe that this book can be enjoyed without necessarily feeling the same feelings as the main character, Esther.

6. BURN FOR BURN by Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian (Goodreads) – It’s no surprise that Jenny Han is one of my favorite authors. I read this series after reading and falling in love with TO ALL THE BOYS I’VE LOVED BEFORE. This series (BURN FOR BURN, FIRE WITH FIRE, and ASHES TO ASHES) was absolutely not what I expected, but it was an amazing unforeseen twist. This twist happens at the end of book two, so you have to read the first two books to see what I’m talking about, but you won’t be sorry. The books are about three students who are fed up with being pushed around and decide to join forces and take their stand.

5. LEARNING NOT TO DROWN by Anna Shinoda (Goodreads) – I don’t remember how I came upon this book, but what a GEM I had stumbled across!! It’s about a broken family and their immense struggles to repair and heal. It’s heavy; emotional ; raw; but it’s also brilliant and breathtaking. Anna really wow’ed me with her debut and I hope she writes more. If you’re ready for a powerhouse contemp, give this one a try.

4. BEFORE I FALL by Lauren Oliver (Goodreads) – BEFORE I FALL is like the YA Groundhog Day – Sam Kingston relives the same day having the option to make changes to try and change the outcome. Though you may think this will get repetitive and you’ll get bored, that’s definitely not the case. Lauren Oliver is such a talented writer this book will hook you right in. It’s a very emotional contemporary that I am definitely overdue for a re-read!

3. TO ALL THE BOYS I’VE LOVED BEFORE by Jenny Han (Goodreads) – A very cute contemporary where Lara Jean writes letters to the boys she’s fallen in love with. A mistake lands those letters in the mail. The boys read the letters upon delivery. I love this book so much! Jenny Han writes such a cute love story with a good amount of complication to keep things interesting. I also love the way Jenny incorporates fashion into Lara Jean. It’s a delightful read. Also try P.S.I STILL LOVE YOU and ALWAYS AND FOREVER, LARA JEAN (Coming April 2017).

2. LOOKING FOR ALASKA by John Green (Goodreads) – This is the book that started it for me. It was my passage into the world of YA as we know it today. This book completely wrecked me, but it was worth it because it was what I needed. I think everyone should read this book. It’s hands down the best from John Green, though most people like to say that’s THE FAULT IN OUR STARS, which is great, but seriously, read ALASKA and then we’ll talk.

1. THE START OF ME AND YOU by Emery Lord (Goodreads) – THE START OF ME AND YOU is an empowering read. We all experience things differently – sometimes for the better and other times not so much. Those experiences change us. The main character of this book takes steps to not let her past define her and that’s when the empowering comes through. I felt amazing after reading this book. Also, completely unrelated, this book gives us Max Watson and believe me, you’re going to want to know Max Watson.

I hope you enjoyed my list. I hope it even encourages you to pick one (or more) of these titles up! Are you participating in TTT today? What’s your post about? Let me know in the comments below!

– Elizabeth

Adult Review: THE FIREMAN by Joe Hill

Published: May 17 2016 by HarperCollins
Pages: 752
Goodreads Synopsis: No one knows exactly when it began or where it originated. A terrifying new plague is spreading like wildfire across the country, striking cities one by one: Boston, Detroit, Seattle. The doctors call it Draco Incendia Trychophyton. To everyone else it’s Dragonscale, a highly contagious, deadly spore that marks its hosts with beautiful black and gold marks across their bodies—before causing them to burst into flames. Millions are infected; blazes erupt everywhere. There is no antidote. No one is safe.

Harper Grayson, a compassionate, dedicated nurse as pragmatic as Mary Poppins, treated hundreds of infected patients before her hospital burned to the ground. Now she’s discovered the telltale gold-flecked marks on her skin. When the outbreak first began, she and her husband, Jakob, had made a pact: they would take matters into their own hands if they became infected. To Jakob’s dismay, Harper wants to live—at least until the fetus she is carrying comes to term. At the hospital, she witnessed infected mothers give birth to healthy babies and believes hers will be fine too. . . if she can live long enough to deliver the child.

Convinced that his do-gooding wife has made him sick, Jakob becomes unhinged, and eventually abandons her as their placid New England community collapses in terror. The chaos gives rise to ruthless Cremation Squads—armed, self-appointed posses roaming the streets and woods to exterminate those who they believe carry the spore. But Harper isn’t as alone as she fears: a mysterious and compelling stranger she briefly met at the hospital, a man in a dirty yellow fire fighter’s jacket, carrying a hooked iron bar, straddles the abyss between insanity and death. Known as The Fireman, he strolls the ruins of New Hampshire, a madman afflicted with Dragonscale who has learned to control the fire within himself, using it as a shield to protect the hunted . . . and as a weapon to avenge the wronged.

In the desperate season to come, as the world burns out of control, Harper must learn the Fireman’s secrets before her life—and that of her unborn child—goes up in smoke

THE FIREMAN was a highly anticipated release for me, based solely on the fact that I’m a Joe Hill fan and would read his grocery list were he to publish that. So I went into THE FIREMAN knowing very little, which is honestly how I prefer to read favorite authors.

That being said, I was completely blown away. I did not anticipate falling so in love with, one of the main characters, Harper. I felt so close to her, like her and I could have been best friends. She was absolute perfection.

This book was riddled with pop culture references, which made it feel relatable for everyone and also a bit terrifying. Relatable when talking about The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Harry Potter, Mary Poppins, ETC – it’s in their world and our world. Terrifying because Hill writes a world so full of references to our own world, the mind starts to imagine Draco Incendia Trychophyton integrated in life today, which is horrifying. Almost as if it were to blaze right off the page. (Snicker) I also greatly appreciated all the subtle and not-so-subtle nods towards Harry Potter. I see the parallels between THE FIREMAN and HARRY POTTER and think adult fans of HARRY POTTER would enjoy this book.

While THE FIREMAN leans more in the realm of dystopia, I’m glad there was still bits of good old fashion cringe worthy horror scenes. I consider Dragonscale, as a whole, horror, but the goal is to survive, which leads me down a dystopian path. For horror lovers like myself, you’ll get your graphic, cringe worthy, intense moments of fear and raw horror.

Joe’s writing is as good as ever. There’s something about it that lifts me up and carries me away in a dream world. He’s so descriptive and comparisons are so right on. I love reading what he has to say. It’s almost as if he crafts every single sentence to be the best it could possibly be.

Throughout the book, we’re reading about the seemingly-inevitable and deadly contagion that is Dragonscale; it’s real and it’s terrifying, but the book offers some light and hilarious comical relief. I laughed often while reading.

I gave 4/5 stars to THE FIREMAN. While I immensely enjoyed it, there were times where it did seem a little too long and drawn out, but it was brief. If I awarded half stars, this would definitely be a 4.5. That’s the only criticism I have for this book.

The ending of this book completely wrecked me. Left me in full on ugly cry mode – puffy red eyes, silent heaving, crocodile sized tears. So, so, so well done. I foresee it placing rank on my best of 2016 list.

Joseph Hillstrom King (born 1972) is an American writer of fiction and comic books, writing under the pen name of Joe Hill.

As of 2016 he has published four novels, a collection of short stories, a six-volume graphic novel series, and more. His most recent novel, The Fireman, debuted at #1 on the New York Times Bestseller list, and his novel Horns was made into a movie starring Daniel Radcliffe.

Hill is the the second child of authors Stephen King and Tabitha King. His younger brother Owen King is also a writer. Joe has three children.

Hill chose to use an abbreviated form of his given name (a reference to executed labor leader Joe Hill, for whom he was named) in 1997, out of a desire to succeed based solely on his own merits instead of as the son of Stephen King. After achieving a degree of independent success, Hill publicly confirmed his identity in 2007 after an article the previous year in Variety broke his cover (although online speculation about Hill’s family background had been appearing since 2005).

Follow Joe: Twitter | Website | Tumblr

Thanks for stopping by and reading my review. I hope you pick up THE FIREMAN! Enjoy the rest of your day!

Young Adult Review (ARC): REPLICA by Lauren Oliver

REPLICA by Lauren Oliver
Publishing: October 4 2016 by HarperCollins
Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ – It was GREAT!
Goodreads Synopsis: Gemma has been in and out of hospitals since she was born. ‘A sickly child’, her lonely life to date has revolved around her home, school and one best friend, Alice. But when she discovers her father’s connection to the top secret Haven research facility, currently hitting the headlines and under siege by religious fanatics, Gemma decides to leave the sanctuary she’s always known to find the institute and determine what is going on there and why her father’s name seems inextricably linked to it.

Amidst the frenzy outside the institute’s walls, Lyra – or number 24 as she is known as at Haven – and a fellow experimental subject known only as 72, manage to escape. Encountering a world they never knew existed outside the walls of their secluded upbringing , they meet Gemma and, as they try to understand Haven’s purpose together, they uncover some earth-shattering secrets that will change the lives of both girls forever…

A HUGE THANK YOU to HarperCollins for sending me an advance readers copy! In exchange, my honest review. . .

REPLICA freaking blew my mind! This story packed so many twists and turns and it was cleverly plotted and well thought out. I absolutely commend Lauren Oliver for weaving together such a complex and twisty story.

I loved both main characters – Lyra and Gemma. The supporting characters were also great. They all felt so real and I immediately attached to them. I became emotionally invested in their well being early in the novel. It was love at first sight.

THE PLOT!! The plot of this novel was absolutely brilliant. I’m not going to say much because I don’t want to give anything away, but if you like Science Fiction, great writing, plot twists, I HIGHLY SUGGEST picking this one up in October!!

If there was one book that I think would be better as a physical over an e-book, it’s REPLICA. Half the book is Lyra’s story, then the flip side is Gemma’s story. I read my physical ARC alternating every two chapters (Ex: two chapters of Lyra, then two chapters of Gemma, two of Lyra, ETC) As an e-book, you are able to skip around, but I don’t think it’ll be as easy as it would with a physical copy. You also don’t have to read it that way. You could read Lyra’s entire story and then switch and read Gemma’s story. There are so many ways to read this story.

I realize that this was one of my shorter reviews, but I really didn’t want to say too much about it. I was terrified I’d give something away. The reveals in the book are gasp-worthy and I didn’t want to deprive you of those. Please pick up this book in October. It’s so freaking good!!


I gave this book four stars. While I loved it to pieces and look forward to re-reading the finished copy, I had a major problem. The characters – Gemma and Lyra – are both guilty of body shaming. Gemma is “fat” and she feels bad about it. She is extremely self-conscious and is constantly making herself seem larger than she is. On one hand, I really wanted to see her love herself and just accept herself for who she is, but on the other hand, I see why it was like this – because it’s realistic. I have been overweight myself and I can tell you that you absolutely think you’re bigger than you really are. I’ve also learned to accept myself and I think it’s a message we need to spread, in life and in literature.

Later in the book, Lyra, who is described as very skinny, turns around and shames her own body. Saying how she’s too skinny and how she’d like to look like the girls who are fuller. It makes me so sad and I really wanted everyone to just love themselves. Alas, there’s nothing I can do. I understand WHY but I REALLY wanted it to be different.

I was born in Queens and raised in Westchester, New York, in a small town very similar to the one depicted in Before I Fall. My parents are both literature professors, and from a very early age, my sister and I were encouraged to make up stories, draw, paint, dance around in costumes, and essentially spend much of our time living imaginatively. Our house was old and full of art and towers and towers of books, and that’s still the kind of house I like best.

I started writing as a way of extending my love of reading; when I read a book I loved, I would continue to write sequels for it (I was inadvertently a fan fic writer, before “fan fiction” was even a term!). Later on, I began working on my own stories, and keeping company with a lot of imaginary friends.

I pursued literature and philosophy at the University of Chicago, and then moved back to New York to attend NYU’s MFA program in creative writing. I simultaneously began working at Penguin Books, in a young adult division called Razorbill, and while there, I started work on Before I Fall. I left in 2009 to pursue writing full-time, and now I happily work in my pajamas every day.

I have a variety of interests apart from writing, including reading, cooking, traveling, dancing, running, and making up weird songs. Some of my favorite things are: being cozy; fires; autumn; fuzzy slippers; very high heels; great wine; dark chocolate; ketchup; pasta. Things I hate: practical shoes, liars, and bananas. I divide my time between Brooklyn, upstate New York, and various hotel rooms.

Also by Lauren: DELIRIUM Trilogy | BEFORE I FALL | PANIC

Follow Lauren: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | YouTube

Thanks so much for stopping by and reading my review! I hope you have a great day!


Welcome to Book Yabber! My name is Elizabeth and I am your host today for the STALKING JACK THE RIPPER Blog Tour, hosted by the Street Team. I have had the immense pleasure of reading the ARC of STALKING JACK (Full Review Here), so today I’m going to share with you a few reasons why you should be excited for its release.

First, let me tell you a little bit about the book.

Synopsis (As provided by Goodreads): Seventeen-year-old Audrey Rose Wadsworth was born a lord’s daughter, with a life of wealth and privilege stretched out before her. But between the social teas and silk dress fittings, she leads a forbidden secret life.

Against her stern father’s wishes and society’s expectations, Audrey often slips away to her uncle’s laboratory to study the gruesome practice of forensic medicine. When her work on a string of savagely killed corpses drags Audrey into the investigation of a serial murderer, her search for answers brings her close to her own sheltered world.

Available for Pre-order through: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | IndieBound | Books Of Wonder (Offering signed and personalized copies!)

Now, a few (of many) reasons you should be excited for STALKING JACK THE RIPPER:

1. Audrey Rose Wadsworth – Audrey Rose Wadsworth is the main character of this book. She is intelligent, brave, and oh-so-fierce. My favorite thing about her has to be her attitude and snark for the time period the book is set in. It’s 1888 and she’s practicing forensic science in private because she’s a female. She’s quite gifted in the throes of the field and turns out to be a huge part of the investigation. I adore her snark when putting men in their places for thinking such dainty and belittling thoughts of women. Not only was she stalking a crazed murderer, she was also representing the underappreciated strength of an entire gender. She’s a strong and inspirational character and I can’t wait for the world to meet her.

2. Accurate Medical Techniques – Where are my fellow thanatology enthusiasts? I am very fascinated with death and all that entails, so I heavily research the subject as recreation. As I was reading STALKING JACK THE RIPPER, Kerri blew me away with the accuracy of the techniques and details. Part of me wonders if we had read the same nonfiction books. Kerri delves into great detail and it all feels so real. I loved that about this book and I hope you do, too!

3. Calling All Sherlock Fans! – There are two characters you will meet in this book that their relationship very closely relates to Sherlock Holmes and John Watson. The chemistry between the two is electric and will definitely bring a smile to your face and often times a chuckle.

4. Who Dun it? – This book is a mystery and it is a very good one. I’m usually one to guess the culprit correctly in mystery novels. I had my suspicions from the very beginning of this novel, but I was completely blind sided. I had guessed wrong and the actual culprit shocked the heck out of me! It was such a good shock. It felt like the rug was pulled right out from underneath me – I love that feeling when a book tricks me. Thriller lovers are definitely going to love this book.

5. The Writing! – The writing in this book is absolutely breathtaking. I was reading through and literally had to remind myself that Kerri is a debut author because her writing does not come across as such. With grace and fluidity, Kerri’s writing depicts stunningly vivid imagery. The number of quotes I flagged in this book is in the twenties. That’s high for me – I’m usually anywhere from one to somewhere in the teens. Such beautiful writing.

I hope you enjoyed my list! I adored this book and I hope you will too! STALKING JACK THE RIPPER releases September 20th, so make sure to pre-order your copy! Thanks for stopping by and reading!

Kerri Maniscalco grew up in a semi-haunted house outside NYC where her fascination with gothic settings began. In her spare time she reads everything she can get her hands on, cooks all kinds of food with her family and friends, and drinks entirely too much tea while discussing life’s finer points with her cats. Stalking Jack the Ripper is her debut novel. It incorporates her love of forensic science and unsolved history, and is the first in a new series of gothic thrillers.

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