Birthday Tag

As February is my birthday month I thought this might be appropriate and fun to get in on! Let’s see what I can come up with!

1) Birthday Cake
A book with a plot that seems cliché but you adore it anyway.

Safe Haven (Nicholas Sparks)
I’m not going to lie, it’s a bit cliché (as are most romance novels.) Boy meets damsel in distress, boy saves damsel in distress, despite the fact that she’s pretty self sufficient and taking care of herself before boy even meets girl. Girl hides her secrets from boy until boy figures out what she’s running from and decides he must protect her. But there’s something so beautiful about the idea of a strong woman who can take care of herself, but is able to show vulnerability to the man she loves. I always enjoy those story lines and Nicholas Sparks always leaves me sobbing so – cliché? Yes. Beautiful none the less? Also yes! And the plot twist at the end, with her neighbour? Wild.

What’s your favourite Nicholas Sparks book? I’m jonesing to read a new one soon!

2) Party Guests
Your most anticipated book release for this year.

Lock Every Door (Riley Sager)
I honestly think I’ve mentioned this book at least three hundred times so far this year (and it’s only February) but it’s absolutely the one book I’m dying to read. I’m not sure if it’s because the plot sounds interesting (thriller/disappearance/spookiness) or if I’ve just become obsessed with Sager’s novels. But either way, I cannot wait to get my hands on this book and I’m certainly going to make a special trip to the book store the day it comes out (July 2, 2019), and leave a spot open on my July TBR for it.
If you want to know more about it (and other books I’m excited for this year, check out my Most Anticipated Releases of 2019)

3) Birthday Presents
A book that surprised you with how much you loved it.

The Tattooist of Auschwitz (Heather Morris)
Historically based books are not usually my cup of tea. I’m not entirely sure why that is, but I just don’t normally gravitate towards anything historical (fiction or non-fiction) but for some reason I pulled this one off the Best Sellers shelf at the bookstore with the express intention of reading outside of my comfort zone. Towards the end of 2018 and now moving forward into 2019 I’m trying very hard to make the conscious decision to read books I know I’ll enjoy (because I always have) – books in the YA and romance genres – but to also branch out and pick things up that I wouldn’t ever have bothered even reading the synopsis for two years ago. And I’m finding an entire world of newness I’m falling in love with. This novel was one of them. I didn’t expect to be so shocked, moved, and inspired by it. Obviously the topic of World War II is, in itself shocking and tragic but I’d never read anything like this before and getting a “first hand” look inside the terror of that time was unimaginably eye opening and life changing. And the hope and beauty of the main characters (Lale and Gita) was the absolute most purest form of love and triumph. It was moving.

4) “Happy Birthday” Song
A book that certainly deserved all the hype it got.

The Wife Between Us (Greer Hendricks & Sarah Pekkanen)
This one was just fantastic. I really enjoyed it’s weird back and forth and feeling sort of lied to the entire book (my absolute favourite thing in a book is feeling like the entire time you know what the heck is happening, only to discover near the end that you actually had no clue what was going on. I love a good unreliable narrator and I love when a book lies to me!) This one lied and ended with a chilling reveal and everyone was hyping it last year and I’m glad I read it! I’m looking forward to reading An Anonymous Girl (also very hyped) by these same authors shortly!

5) Happy Music
A book with some very beautiful and truly memorable quotes.

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry (Rachel Joyce)
I don’t want to get into this one too much since I’m planning my next review on it, but I’d say it has some of the nicest quotes I’ve ever read.

“… puffs of clouds sat on a tissue-paper sky.”
What a gorgeous way to describe the sky. That line actually made me melt. I loved that one.

“Beginnings could happen more than once, or in different ways.”
Also beautiful. I love the idea of this whole sentence. Beginnings being something that are multiple and not singular, which is the way I think most people view them. The beginning of a relationship, of a career, of so many things, that we feel like once we get to the middle it’s pretty much the end. But beginnings can happen in more than one way, more than once. Gorgeous!

“She wanted to add ‘darling’ but the word was too shy to come out.”
This perfectly describes a feeling I’ve had many times in the past but couldn’t verbalize. When you want to say something to someone but you’re too uncertain or embarrassed to say it. The word is too shy to come out. I love that!

6) Getting Older
A book that you read a long time ago, but you think you would appreciate more if you read it as a more mature reader.

Bridge to Terabithia (Katherine Paterson)
I remember reading this when I was younger and sobbing. While I can’t remember exactly how old I was, I’m pretty confident I was still in middle school at the time. But I feel like now that I’m much older I’d probably have the same reaction; the imagination and purity of Jess and Leslie would still be so magical and beautiful. The only thing is, that when I first read this beautiful story about the wild imaginative world of these two young people, I was young myself and having never had to understand tragic loss, I feel like it would probably hit closer to home and be something I’d relate to on an entirely different, possibly even deeper level. I should pull this one off my shelf again the next time I need a good cry. Highly recommend it to anyone of any age.

7) Sweet Birthday Memories
A book that kept you incredibly happy during a sad or demanding period of your life.

Harry Potter (Queen J.K Rowling)
This is probably the most obvious answer but it’s true to the very core of my soul, so I don’t see a point in trying to come up with a more obscure, less obvious answer. Harry Potter saved me from some very dark teen years (and continues to remind me of the pure joy of reading, every single time I pick up any of the books) and there’s no way for me to deny that it was, at times, the only thing that helped me escape reality in the most beautiful and poetic way that only all the wonderful – multigenerational – books out there are capable of. We are truly blessed to be a part of a world where Harry Potter exists.

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