2022 Reading Wrap-Up

Hello everyone and happy New Year! 🎉 I hope you all had a wonderful New Year’s celebration 😊 Is it the middle of January already? Well, I guess I at least got this up in the right month 🤷‍♂️

Since I had a lot of work to do, and the holidays were busy this year, I didn’t get to post as much as I would have liked last year, but I’m going to get back into posting now that I’ve got a bit more of a routine going (we’ll see how this goes 😂).

My little spiel is done, and now that it’s 2023, it’s time for me to look over my reading stats for 2022! I’ve been tracking my stats through the StoryGraph for the past few years, so these are stats I got straight from there. If you hate GoodReads and want an alternative, the StoryGraph is for you (especially if you love tracking your reading stats). Plus I found it easily transfers all your GoodReads data.

Anyways, during 2022, I read a total of 52 books, and 50 was my goal for the year, so woohoo!

Page-wise, I read 12,940 pages, which I guess is a lot? I don’t know if that’s a lot for one year or not, but it’s pretty cool to know! 😂

I did read a lot of manga this year, so I think that skewed my stats a bit, but my top 3 genres I read were Fantasy, Manga, and LGBTQIA+.

Moodwise, I mainly read adventurous, dark, and mysterious stories.

And that’s about it for the stats! Below are all the books I read last year:

Now what is my reading goal for 2023? I only really care about setting a goal for total number of books read throughout the year, so that’s all I’ll set.

Let’s go with… 65 books 👌 See if I can beat my goal from last year, cause why not 🤷‍♂️ Currently, I am in the middle of two books, as I’m still reading The Well of Ascension (I’m aiming to actually finish it this year) and I recently started reading Howl’s Moving Castle.

What were some of your favorite reads from last year? Let me know in the comments below!

Otherwise, I will see you in the next post!

WWW Wednesday (11/02/22)

Happy Wednesday!

I did manage to finish a series, start a new book, and I got back into a book I put down for a bit, all within the past week, so I’m gonna go ahead and talk about it!

WWW Wednesdays were originally hosted by A Daily Rhythm but has been revived by Sam from Taking on a World of Words.

Now, let’s talk books!

What I Finished Reading

What I’m Currently Reading

What I’m Planning On Reading Next

Here are a few of my options, although if I included all of the books that I might read next, this post would never end 😂 We’ll see what I want to read once I’m done with the two books I’m currently reading, but I am leaning more towards something YA at the moment 🤔

And that’s all I have for today! What have you been reading lately? Let me know in the comments below. Otherwise, I will see you in the next post 😉

-Erin (:

Top Ten Tuesday: Unlikable Characters You Can’t Help But Love

Hello everyone! Happy Top Ten Tuesday and happy November! 🍁🍂

I just finished my Blog Every Day in October challenge, but I’m still planning on doing at least a TTT post and a WWW Wednesday post this week, so you’ll still see a couple more posts from me 😉

Anyway, this week’s post is about those unlikeable characters (a villain, someone who’s a jerk, etc.) who are likable in their own special way. For some reason, I can’t think of ten characters to fit into this week’s prompt (I’m away from my shelves while I dog sit, so have to base it on what I recorded on the StoryGraph). In other words… this might be more of a Top Six or Seven Tuesday instead of a Top Ten Tuesday 😂

Jana from That Artsy Reader Girl hosts Top Ten Tuesdays every week, so go check out her blog (where you’ll also find more bloggers who participated in that week’s round of Top Ten Tuesday)!

On that note, let’s get into the post!

Guts from Berserk

If you’ve read Berserk, you know what I mean 😂 If you haven’t read this series, I don’t know how to describe him without getting into spoilers… maybe as someone who can be very cold and stand-offish (also a killing machine), but it makes sense when you learn more about his backstory.

Delilah from Delilah Green Doesn’t Care

I don’t know if this is more of Delilah being unlikeable to the reader, but she is definitely unlikeable to her step-sister Astrid and her friend group. As the book goes on, however, their relationships with each other evolve as they start to understand things that happened in the past.

Clubs From the Mistborn Trilogy

Clubs is a grumpy old man, but as the series went on, I started liking him more and more, especially his interactions with Breeze.

Shara from I Kissed Shara Wheeler

Shara goes from being a mystery and unlikeable, to becoming unlikeable, to a more likeable character by the end of the book, and I just have to say, that it’s quite the journey 😂 A fun journey, but definitely a journey haha

Ove from A Man Called Ove

Ove is also a grumpy man, but his transformation throughout the story is heart-warming, and overall, it was a beautifully written novel focusing on his character development.

The De La Cruz Family from The House of Broken Angels

So this one is a bit complicated, because this book focuses so much on the family relationships, detailing the complex feelings that comes with a large family, especially when you don’t fit into the perfect mold. I wouldn’t say that the members of the De La Cruz family are unlikeable, but just like everyone else, they have flaws that are unlikeable. This was a great book, and I highly recommend checking it out.

Julien from Cemetery Boys

I’m hesitant to include him on this list, but the initial description of Julien is that he’s essentially the typical “bad boy,” but as the story goes on and the reader learns more about him, you begin to realize how much of it was him putting on a tough exterior and people just spreading rumors.

And that’s all I have for today! Do you have any characters you would add to this list? Let me know in the comments below 👌 Otherwise, I will see you in the next post!

-Erin (:

BEDIO: Free Write Monday And Last Day of BEDIO

Hello and welcome to the last post for BEDIO!

Before we get started, I just want to say that if anyone is looking for a fun Halloween movie to watch today, you should check out Wendell and Wild on Netflix! It’s a Claymation movie about two demon brothers (Wendell and Wild) who make a deal with 13-year-old Kat Elliot to bring her parents back from the dead so they can build their dream amusement park. If you want to watch a story about Hell Maidens, a determined group of citizens trying to save a small town, and some magic hair cream, I highly recommend it 🎃😉

So, back to today’s writing prompt!

You know the drill by now, as I share these prompts, feel free to try them out yourself and share your work! Whether it’s linking to your post, or just writing it out in a comment, I’d love to see what you come up with (:

Now, since it’s Halloween, today’s prompt will be related to the holiday! I found a list of prompts from The Write Practice and will be choosing a prompt from there. Make sure to check out the other prompts, too 🍂🍁

PROMPT:  A mad scientist determined to destroy the world falls hopelessly in love with a not-so-wicked witch. As hard as he tries, he can’t impress her.

More Canva inspiration

Who would have thought everything I worked for would come crumbling down because of one person? My life fell apart, not because of an enemy, but because of someone I love dearly. Someone whose eyes light up with at the thought of her life’s passions, someone whose power is undeniably beautiful, but also terrifying. A witch who lives life on the outskirts of her town, but still makes meaningful connections with her fellow townsfolk. Who would have thought someone this wonderful would be my downfall?

And on a final note:


Since WordPress is being difficult and isn’t letting me embed it directly into my post, here is a link to my favorite Halloween GIF of all time.

Thanks again for anyone who checked out my posts throughout the month, and I hope you have a fun and safe Halloween!

-Erin 🎃

BEDIO: Banned Book Highlight: The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison

Hello, and welcome back to one of my final BEDIO posts for 2022!

Today’s post is actually a book I wanted to talk about during Banned Books Week, but I never got around to reading it, so I saved the draft for later. Well… I still haven’t read it, but I want to talk about it so I’m going to go ahead and post it anyways 😂

Today’s post is going to to focus on the history of controversy/challenges/bans: The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison.

It has quite a lengthy history of challenges and bans since its original publication in 1970, which is also interesting as this is Toni Morrison’s first book. The Bluest Eye follows three young Black girls from Lorain, Ohio, after the Great Depression. There are a variety of reasons why the book has been banned, and a few of the cases of its banning are listed in the table below.

Note: Although The Bluest Eye has been around for a long time, I was only able to find challenging/banning cases starting in the 2000s. I figure part of it may have to do with how the cases were recorded, as the ALA has only been recording cases since the 90s (a few of these cases mention that the book didn’t face any controversy at those particular schools despite having been a part of the curriculum during the 90s, so I think this is important to mention).

YearReason For Ban/Challenge
2022This year, The Bluest Eye has faced bans and challenges across the country due to its depictions of child sexual abuse, and sexually explicit content.
2021In California, several parents complained about sexual violence and child sexual abuse, resulting in the novel being removed from the Colton Joint Unified School District’s core and extended reading lists during Black History Month. Although it was removed from the curriculum, the book was still available to check out from school libraries. There was pushback by other parents, along with national press attention, leading the school board to reverse its decision. The Bluest Eye returned to the curriculum list and five other books were added. According to the book selection committee, it refined its selection process, increased parent representation, improved the opt-out process, and added more diverse authors to the curriculum.
2020In Florida, a challenge was placed on 14 books by the It’s Your Tea Party and Florida Citizen’s Alliance. This was due to the books being “obscene” and/or
“[contained] pornographic material” under Florida law. School libraries only carried 10 of the 14 books, which included two books by Toni Morrison (The Bluest Eye and Beloved). As a result, the Superintendent of Marion County Public Schools removed all the available books from its middle schools. Policy then required that a committee review the remaining nine books to determine the educational value for high school students. The committee recommended that the books are retained, which was approved by the superintendent. Although the groups appealed the retention of three titles from that list, the school board voted to keep them.
2018During 2018, The Bluest Eye faced two incidents, one a challenge, and the other a ban.
The challenge was in Texas at Uplift Charter Schools North Hills Preparatory School due to the for sexual situations depicted in the book such as rape, incest, and teen pregnancy. In the end, the book was retained.
In North Carolina, the book was banned at North Buncombe High School. At the beginning of the school year, teachers informed parents and students of the controversial content. Students were allowed to opt out of reading the book and replace it with another one. However, when the unit began, a parent challenged the book because it didn’t align with their values and also felt it was not appropriate for school. At first, a school committee gathered and ultimately agreed with the parent, believing it wasn’t appropriate for an 11th grade class, but recommended it for a 12th grad AP literature class. Eventually though, the district removed the book from the curriculum for “all grades and levels of instruction.”
2017In Michigan, the book was challenged, but retained as part of Northville High School’s AP English course. The challenge was based on a parent’s objection to the novel’s content, such as the depiction of sexual assault. The book has been part of Northville’s AP English and Composition course since the early 90s. The school board’s final vote was that AP students and parents have the option of choosing between three books covering the themes of oppression and poverty.
2015It was challenged, but retained in Oklahoma at the Durant high school library. The challenge was raised by a parent who was concerned about the sexual and violent content.
2014In Adams County, Colorado, it was challenged at Legacy High School, specifically in the AP English classes as it was considered a “bad book.” Parents were notified about the book, along with reasons for why an alternate assignment was offered. Around half a dozen students out of the 150 read one of the alternative book options.
It was also challenged in Columbus, Ohio, as the book was on a suggested reading list for high school students. This challenge was led by the school board president since it was inappropriate for the school board to “even be associated with it.” Another board member remarked that the book has “an underlying socialist-communist agenda.”
2012In Connecticut, challenge was raised at Brookfield High School because of the sex scenes, profanity, and age-appropriateness of the book. This challenge came despite the book being a part of the school’s curriculum since 1995.
2009Retained at Delphi Community High School in Indiana, despite claims of sexual content and inappropriate language.
2008Challenged at Howell High School in Michigan due to sexual content. This challenge came from the president of the Livingston Organization for Values in Education (LOVE), and prompted the county’s top law enforcement official to review the book to see whether any laws against distribution of sexually explicit materials to minors had been broken.
According to the county prosecutor, “Whether these materials are appropriate for minors is a decision to be made by the school board, but I find that they are not in violation of the criminal laws.”
2007Challenged in the Howell (MI) High School because of the book’s strong sexual content. In response from the president of the Livingston Organization for Values in Education (LOVE), the county’s top law enforcement official reviewed the book to see whether laws against distribution of sexually explicit materials to minors had been broken. The county prosecutor wrote, “Whether these materials are appropriate for minors is a decision to be made by the school board, but I find that they are not in violation of the criminal laws.”
2006Banned from the Littleon (CO) curriculum and library shelves after complaints about its explicit sex, including the rape of an eleven-year-old girl by her father.
2005Challenged, but retained at the Kern High School District in Bakersfield (CA) despite complaints of the book’s sexually explicit material.
2004Challenged, but retained at the Kern High School District in Bakersfield (CA) despite complaints of the book’s sexually explicit material.
All information is courtesy of Marshall Libraries

PBS published a great interview with Shekema Silveri, the Founder and Executive Director of the IFE Academy of Teaching & Technology, a K-12 independent micro school in Atlanta, Georgia. She started her career as an English teacher and includes The Bluest Eye in her lesson plans. Silveri discusses the important themes in The Bluest Eye, especially the societal standard of beauty (in this case, that having lighter eyes and lighter skin=more beautiful) since it impacts her students even to this day.

Silveri’s interview brings to light one of the main points of why book challenges/bans are harmful to students. Although these books may have topics which are ugly and difficult to discuss, they are a safe environment for students to explore these topics. As Silveri states in her PBS interview,

Kids who come back from college tell me that my class feels more of a cultural studies class than an English class. The way I teach is that we explore the world, and literature is the artifact. In my classroom, the novels are not the be all to end all. The novels are what we use to examine the culture that we currently find ourselves in.

And on that note, that’s all I have for today’s post! Have you read The Bluest Eye? What are your thoughts on the book and the challenges it’s faced? Let me know in the comments below!

Otherwise, I will see you tomorrow with my final BEDIO post 💀👻🍁

-Erin 🎃

BEDIO: The Final Blog Everyday in October Writing Update

Hello and happy Saturday everyone!

Today is the last Saturday of October, which means it’s the last writing update for BEDIO (in case you couldn’t tell from the title).

So what did I learn over the month?

Continue reading “BEDIO: The Final Blog Everyday in October Writing Update”

This or That Book Tag

Happy Friday everyone!

Since yesterday’s post was a bit heavy in terms of topic and analysis, I thought it would be good to have a more light post for today! So, we’re going to go ahead and do the “This Or That” book tag, which I’ve had sitting in my drafts for quite a while… but what else is new? 😂 I originally found it on Kimberly Faye Reads site, and I wanted to do it because I thought it looked like fun!

Continue reading “This or That Book Tag”

BEDIO: Breaking Down The Argument of “The Paradox of Innocence” by Garret Merriam

Hello everyone!

This post is a bit different from my previous posts as I’m breaking down an article that discusses the death penalty. A bit heavier of a topic than what I usually cover on this blog, but I think that the topic, and the arguments he discusses in the article are interesting and can be applied to a variety of issues outside the death penalty.

Continue reading “BEDIO: Breaking Down The Argument of “The Paradox of Innocence” by Garret Merriam”

BEDIO: WWW Wednesday (10/26/22)

Hey everyone and welcome back to another WWW Wednesday!

I actually finished some books this past week, so it won’t be as short as my post from last week 🎉

WWW Wednesdays were originally hosted by A Daily Rhythm but has been revived by Sam from Taking on a World of Words.

Now let’s talk books!

What I Finished Reading

What I’m Currently Reading

What I Want To Read Next

I’m not sure what I want to read after this, I was thinking either Cazadora, The Bluest Eye, or The Only Good Indian… but I haven’t made a final decision. Who knows, the next book I read might be something that I didn’t even list here 😂 Especially now that I think about it since I realized I also have The Sunbearer Trials and The Last Night At The Telegraph Club left to read as well 🤔 Decisions decisions!

That’s all I have for today, let me know what you’re currently reading in the comments below! Otherwise, I will see you tomorrow with a new post 👻

-Erin 🎃

BEDIO: Top Ten Tuesday- Books I Want To Read After October

Hello and welcome to another Top Ten Tuesday!

Today’s prompt is a Halloween Freebie, so I decided I want to talk about the books I want to read, even after October ends. These might be books I didn’t get to this month, or books I just learned about and I want to pick up soon, they might even happen to be more spooky or horror books. There may not be a specific type of book I’m discussing; the only thing I know is that it’s just not going to happen this month 😂

I did divide the books into some random categories, just because I wanted to make some fun graphics for them haha 👻

Jana from That Artsy Reader Girl hosts Top Ten Tuesdays every week, so go check out her blog (where you’ll also find more bloggers who participated in that week’s round of Top Ten Tuesday)! By the way, if you’re looking for a free Word Cloud Generator, this is the one I used, and it was great!

So without further ado, let’s get into it!

And that’s all I have for today! Let me know what are some books you’re thinking about reading below! Otherwise, I will see you with a new post tomorrow (:

-Erin 🎃