December 2019 Wrap-Up / The Year in Review

I read a whopping 8 books in December, which was 100% a personal record for the year. I just really, really wanted to reach my adjusted Goodreads goal and with those books I did. Here’s the recent ones I read:

The Dire King (Jackaby, #4) Defy Me (Shatter Me, #5) Find Me The Pisces Animals Monstress, Vol. 1: Awakening Noughts & Crosses (Noughts & Crosses #1) P.S. I Still Love You (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #2)

As per usual, when you click on the covers, you’ll get re-directed to Goodreads, where you are always welcome to add me as a reading buddy! For the books that I have written reviews for, you can find them by clicking on the titles above.

Because I did this last year, I am also going to share my entire year of reading with you. Goodreads is really great at putting together a fun summary to share with everyone and I am going to do that here in parts, but you can find my entire results here.

I didn’t read a massive amount of books in 2019, but I am quite content with it looking back at the year. I was really busy with work and had literal months where I didn’t pick up a single book, so I am glad to have gotten to a total of 26 books! However, I have noticed that I started to gravitate more towards shorter to medium-length books and entirely avoided epic series. There were also quite a couple comic books and novellas featured, if you look at my reading list as a whole.

Finally, my average rating for the books I read was 3.5, which is 0.4 stars lower than in the previous year. Considering that I read 10 books less and actively tried to look at books more critically without giving away high ratings as willy nilly as I have done in the past, I am also not disappointed with this result.

2019 wasn’t the easiest of years for me for a multitude of reasons that I don’t want to get into. I am not going to lie to you though, it did reflect heavily in my blogging habits and the resulting stats. I have been struggling more than usual to deliver steady content and it showed by being the worst year in blogging since 2014 (having started the blog in 2013). I don’t want to whine about it, and even though I strongly believe that stats aren’t everything, it has affected my relationship with the blog a little bit. I am still so very grateful for everyone who stuck around, even when there were sometimes weeks of only trailer posts and nothing else. I don’t really know if I can promise to do better in 2020, but I am not willing to give up just yet.

  • The blog currently has 2,470 WordPress followers, a number that keeps growing slowly but steadily. If I add the people who have followed via mail, we have surpassed 2,500 easily.
  • This is post #1113, so there is really a lot to plow through if you want to do a deep dive into the archives of Life and Other Disasters.
  • I really, really want to give a shout-out to my top commenters, because the interaction is what makes blogging so great and worthwhile. So, huge thank you to Rami, Lois, The Orang-utan Librarian, the Educated Negra, Caro and Marie!!

MOST POPULAR POSTS OF 2019

(click on the title of the post to read the full thing!)

Kiss, Marry, Kill – Marvel Edition: It was a big year for Marvel, so I am not surprised that it was a draw in terms of blog posts. The fact that this one was more about the actors than the characters didn’t really seem to deter anyone either.

The Rook: Book vs. TV Show: It makes me so happy to know that these book to screen comparison posts do so well, because I know that a lot of us bloggers struggle with the performance of review posts. The fact that this is one of my favourite shows of the year is just an added bonus!

Kiss, Marry, Kill: TV Edition: Y’all really like to know who I would kiss, marry or kill it seems? All I can say about that is that I really, really struggle with the last part with every single edition of this post I did. And … I think this was the 5th installment already?

What I’ve Been Binge-Watching #3: I’ve started this series either late in 2018 or early 2019 and toyed around with the format, making little adjustments here and there for a while. I am glad it resonates with people, although I have no idea why this one in particular did well.

Random Movie Recommendations: Karen Gillan Edition: Yay for all of you being as big Karen Gillan enthusiasts as I am! That’s probably the reason this post was interesting to some people out there.

MY 2019 RANKINGS

Last but not least, here are all the links for my 2019 rankings for movies, books and TV shows in case you missed them the past couple of days!

I hope you had a great start into the year 2020 so far! Is there something you really liked on the blog in 2019 and want to see more of in the new year? Let’s chat!

November 2019 Wrap-Up

Sooo, I started November super strong on the blog, but it unfortunately fizzled out fast. It’s not that I don’t care about blogging anymore, but reading isn’t really a priority and I haven’t been watching/bingeing as much content as I used to. I’ve spent more time drawing writing and dealing with life stuff aka adulting, that it simply didn’t remain a priority.

The books I did get around to weren’t really worth reviewing on their own either. On the one hand, I listened to another audiobook (read here why that’s usually not my thing) by James Acaster called Perfect Sound Whatever. It was about him going through a break up and coping by getting obsessed with one particular year of music. It’s not that the book was bad overall, but since it was about music and I was listening to an audiobook, I had hoped for samples of the songs he mentioned, which obviously didn’t happen (I know that’s not feasible, but I wasn’t going to look up every song and stopping the audiobook every couple of minutes either).

And on the other hand, I read a comic I had supported during their Kickstarter campaign called Our Super Canadian Adventure. It’s perfect if you like short stories, cute drawing styles and cats! (Also, if you love Toronto and the Canadian East coast as that’s mainly where it took place.)

Perfect Sound Whatever  Our Super Canadian Adventure: An Our Super Adventure Travelogue

As per usual, when you click on the covers, you’ll get re-directed to Goodreads, where you are always welcome to add me as a reading buddy!

I have moved back to Vienna and am living with my parents again. It’s an adjustment to say the least, as I’ve been living very independently in Berlin for the past 14 months. Anyway, I have plans that I am still not really willing to get into just yet, but they’ll likely take me out of the country soon-ish again.

Moving has been much more taxing than I thought. I own so many things and I don’t know where they come from or what to do with them. Some I use regularly, others have sentimental value, but a lot of the past couple weeks involved throwing stuff away and donating everything that could possibly bring others joy even if it doesn’t spark that feeling in me anymore.

I have not managed to make a YouTube reaction video, BUT I have made a lot of Charmed fandom videos. It’s crazy to think that some of them have reached 7.5K views (like this one), but I legit haven’t posted anything that surpassed 1K views easily and now I am not surprised people switched to YouTube from blogging from time to time.

I am no editing genius, but others are really, really good at that stuff. A thing I am pretty good at though, is drawing! It’s been incredible to get so much positive feedback on my drawings. Here are the most successful of the past month as I promised I would share them on here again as well.

Image   Image

My next step will be venturing out into the territory of some other shows. The writer’s room of Legacies has already expressed interest in me drawing their characters and I am more than happy to oblige. It’s kind of crazy how much I am into the CW shows.

Lastly, I also claimed to try and work on a new WIP for NaNoWriMo, which ended up being a lie. I wrote 1K words and then changed my mind and went back to working on the #witchyWIP, because I am just THAT much into witches right now. I am at about 12K words for that now, which also isn’t the amount you need to “win”, but I am still proud of getting back into writing again. I even went to a local meet-up and writing in a group always motivates me so much!

THINGS I LIKED THIS MONTH

Honestly, it’s mostly been interacting with more people in the online community again. I plan on trying to visit some more of your blogs this upcoming month again (no promises, but I shall try!!!), because I’ve missed this. I just need to try and not get so distracted. To spur me on a little bit, I’d love it if you posted the link to your favourite post from the last month in the comments (either your own or of another blogger) and I will promise to check them out!

MY POSTS

WRITING RELATED

TV SHOW/MOVIE RELATED

TRAILER POSTS

I hope you had a great month and will have a lovely December! And if you celebrate them, I already hope you’ll have great holidays!

May 2018 Wrap-Up

While saying “I am hopelessly behind on my Goodreads Challenge” may be an exaggeration, I am definitely not on track. I am more or less four books behind and am struggling to keep up a little bit. This month was especially more busy than the previous ones and often I was just too tired to concentrate on reading in addition to everything else that was going on. Still, I managed to not read a lot of books, but at least fairly long-ish books in comparison. Take a look!

Obsidio (The Illuminae Files, #3)  Sweetbitter  Restore Me (Shatter Me, #4)

As always, click on the title to get to the review on the blog and on the cover to get re-directed to Goodreads!

During the entire month of May, I was taking a workshop on the topic of stage and camera casting. While it did involve some theoretic content, it mostly consisted of a lot of acting practice and as you know, I am not an actress. Still, it was fun! Sometimes some roles nearly drove me mad because things didn’t go the way I wanted them to, but overall, I think I am really going to miss acting on a regular basis. I still cannot imagine doing that as a full time job, I am just not sure I am cut out for that, but it was a very fascinating insight of how a life like that might look like.

That course also inspired/encouraged me to start a YouTube channel for my blog. I haven’t set it up yet and am not even sure what exactly I would talk about in my first video (or the ones to come). Still, that didn’t keep me from doing a Twitter poll on whether you’d watch it and 80% of you were kind enough to say “YAS! DO IT!”, so I am seriously considering doing just that. As soon as it’s happening, you’ll be the first to know!

So, what else is new? I did not win the fan art contest I entered in last month, I managed to update Arcadia again and I continue to have fun with my art instagram account if the time allows it. Also, as some of you know, I have pretty vivid dreams but this month really took the crown! I had a continuous dream for more or less two weeks and no matter what I did the story kept evolving. My friends have suggested I should write it down and make it into a book. Maybe I will do that? Maybe I won’t? I think you’d all prefer me to stick to Arcadia for now.

ELSEWHERE ON THE BLOGOSPHERE

Continuing on my quest to share the love for some of my favourite bloggers out there, here are a couple of posts I really enjoyed this month!

  • Marie made sure we all knew how to get inspiration for our blogs, especially when it seems like everything has been done before because we are all blogging dinosaurs and have been at it for years.
  • The Orang-utan Librarian issues the unfortunately still necessary reminder that book reviews are for readers and not authors!
  • Beth started a discussion on why world building is important to her and I loved that post as it also reminded me why I love it when authors really put in the work when they create a new society.
  • I only just discovered Lily‘s blog, but it was her mentioning one of my favourite school reads as one of her favourite books that sparked my interest. We both knew that not a lot of people had ever heard of that story and I just love that books can bring us together like that. And I really enjoyed reading her posts ever since.
  • Also, a big thank you to Melissa, Sophie, Marie, Malanie, Molly and Sieran for talking about their WIP by doing my original Milestones Write Tag. I always love reading other people’s posts, so please don’t hesitate to do the tag if you are a fellow writer and I might not have tagged you.

MY POSTS

WRITING RELATED

ALL KINDS OF POSTS

DISCUSSION TIME

TRAILER POSTS

So, that was my month! How was yours? Would you watch videos of me? Are you all caught up on Arcadia? Let’s chat!

All About My Shows Tag!

You all know how thoroughly obsessed I am with TV shows, so when I saw this tag created by Nyx (Marie’s lovely sister) @Drizzle and Hurricane Books I simply had to try it! I hope you’ll enjoy hearing some more about my TV show life *cough* as if I didn’t talk about it enough already *cough*

1. First TV show you ever watched

Okay, so I honestly don’t know the answer to that. I am sure it was some sort of cartoon, but I simply cannot remember. As an alternative answer, I am offering you the first live action show that I was extremely passionate and fangirl-y about – The Tribe!

For those of you who’ve never heard about it, it’s a dystopian show where all adults have died because of a vicious virus and now the kids and teens have to survive somehow. Tribes are formed, everyone has really crazy make up and there’s the usual love-triangle-drama and stuff. Not sure it was the most appropriate show for 7 year-old me but I was in love with it nonetheless.

2. All-time favorite TV show

I underestimated how difficult it would be to pick just one for each of the categories … well, I suppose if you would twist my arm, I’d say Veronica Mars. That girl was my hero growing up and her love story with Logan is so epic and then there’s, of course, the fact that she is just extremely badass.

3. Your character crush

Hmmm … I think I am going for Cassandra Cillian from The Librarians here. She’s basically a mathemagician, so she’s into math and magic – that’s High School me. Also, I love how casually they throw her bisexuality into the mix. Smart, badass, gorgeous woman who makes mistakes and redeems herself to become a powerful magician – what’s not to like?

 

4. Favorite OTP

Ugh, these questions are not getting any easier and I’ve used up so many potential answers already (because silly me doesn’t want to repeat herself). I am digging deep in the nostalgic area of my brain right now and I’ll say Phoebe and Cole from Charmed. I was all over that back in the day! (Although Piper and Leo have a way healthier relationship of course!)

5. Most disappointing ending or cancellation

There’s quite a lot of those out there. I am pretty sure that I am just plain pissed when something ends or gets cancelled about 80% of the time? Maybe even more … I am seriously not ruling it out to be more. Anyway, I will never quite get over how Dollhouse ended. I was devastated and I just knew they rushed things because they knew they were getting cancelled. It was oddly fitting but at the same time … whyyy? You know?

6. A show you would like to be on

All the shows? Uhm … I don’t know!? I would really, really like to work on Wynonna Earp. But it could just be a phase, I never have particularly good reasons for being into shows. Anyway, it looks super fun from the BTS photos and videos I’ve seen.

7. A character you would love to take out on a date

So, I have a huge crush on Josh from Younger, especially in the later seasons. At this point I have no idea if I am into Josh or just Nico Tortorella in general. Either way I am pretty sure a date with him would be loads of fun!

8. A popular TV show you can’t stand

I am sorry but I am really not into Breaking Bad. I tried it, but it’s just not for me. I don’t hate it or anything, but I could never muster up that love that so many others seem to have developed for it.

9. A scene that made you cry like a baby

It’s super difficult to pick something that’s not a spoiler for something. So, bear with me. There are quite a lot of scenes in Doctor Who that have me balling my eyes out, but when Eleven says “I’ve seen things you wouldn’t believe, I’ve lost things you will never understand…” I am always getting emotional, remembering past and future seasons’ heartbreak in my head. There are other scenes that have me way more sad, but again, SPOILERS!

10. A character with a killer wardrobe

Doctor Who’s very own Clara Oswald without a doubt. I fancy that girl so much. I always felt like she was the companion most like me, just with the confidence turned WAY UP. I know that she got on a lot of people’s nerves, but I always admired her. She’s bossy and passionate and quirky and I’d raid her closet any day.

So, that’s it from me, now I tag thee!

Trailers You Might Have Missed … (Jan 30-Feb 5)

trailers

Sooo, today is Super Bowl Sunday, but the game is not for a couple more hours. In fact, it will be about 11 PM local time when they start showing it here. Therefore don’t expect any of those new trailers to be here. They will most likely all be in the post next week though. Let’s see what I’ve got for you now:

Movies

Beauty and the Beast

Don’t know if I already shared this, but it doesn’t matter because it’s Beauty and the Beast.

Girls Trip

For a chill movie night at home, I would definitely watch this.

Transformers: The Last Knight

I thought this was done like 3 movies ago, but I will most likely watch it.

Fist Fight

I am not sure I find this funny.

Ghost in a Shell

The visuals for this look stunning.

Life

I only like peaceful alien movies like Arrival.

Speech & Debate

SHE AUDITIONED WITH HAMILTON! And Lin is in it! And Darren Criss too.

The Beautiful Fantastic

I think this looks sweet.

From Nowhere

Seems current to me.

TV Shows

Animal Kingdom (Season 2)

I am SO looking forward to having the family back. Bad is bred.

Time After Time

Soooo, remember how I complained about all those shows messing with time? Here’s another one! But I still want to check it out. I quite like the cast.

Famous in Love

Seriously, if it had a different lead, I would be all over this … but Bella Thorne just isn’t my person.

Will

Yeah … not sure. I mean, Shakespeare has been done a lot.

Claws

No idea what this is. How do you do anything with nails that long? All I’d accomplish would be scratching myself and getting frustrated with my phone.

Doubt

I doubt that I want to watch this

American Crime (Season 3)

Just clicked because of Sandra Oh. This gives me chills and I don’t want to see it.

What are you watching? I am quite obsessed with Riverdale at the moment! Let’s talk!

Top 16 TV Shows of 2016

top16

There are a ton of bookish favourites list, but I am not quite ready to do that. However, then I saw Cátia over at The Girl Who Read Too Much doing a post on TV shows and I thought that I’d definitely be up for that! Here are my Top 16 Shows of 2016, but mind you, they aren’t really in no particular order.

Class

As a warning, Doctor Who did not make it onto this list, not only because of the fact that they only had the Christmas Special this year (still not sure if I will ever review that one) but also because I am generally way more excited about Class than I am currently about anything else Who-related. The cast is amazing, Patrick Ness created a great, fast-moving and emotional show. I simply cannot wait for more seasons in the future (which I am sure they will get!) and for the relationships to deepen and to get even more of these cutesy moments.

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The Shannara Chronicles

I’ve said it before and I will say it again, I don’t get all the doubts when it comes to MTV’s original programming. They are doing an amazing job, putting real high quality stuff out there and if you didn’t believe it before, The Shannara Chronicles should have been the final confirmation. It’s funny and action-packed and I am STILL not over what happened in the end.

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Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency

Not gonna lie, half the time I didn’t even know what the purpose of that show was. It’s based on books by Douglas Adams, but it has very little to do with the source material from what I am told. I guess hardcore fans won’t think so, but sometimes that’s for the better? I enjoyed the show so much, I binged it in one day. It was hilariously non-sensical most of the time. My favourite part were the Rowdy 3 taking Amanda into their fold, I need more of that weird dynamic.

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Wynonna Earp

A demon hunting girl? Yeah, I did not peg that show to be a front-runner for me, but I loved Wynonna Earp so much. Wynonna is such a sassy and reluctant heroine, you cannot help but adore her. The production value might not be up to par with some of the other shows, but it was still such a fun time watching it. For a while I even considered dressing up as Wynonna for Comic Con, but then I wasn’t sure anyone would recognise it …

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Pitch

There’s nothing I don’t love about this show. It is diverse and empowering for women and I need everyone to shut up about how women cannot throw/pitch with as much strength and speed as men. I also don’t want to hear how the show isn’t realistic and it doesn’t look like “real” baseball. Guess what? All the actors and actresses had to learn the game and duh, they aren’t pro-ballers, so it will never look exactly like the major league, who cares? IT IS TV!!! (And they still achieved a lot) I NEED a second season of this glorious show. It is family friendly with a great message. Not everything goes perfectly, and that is what makes it so realistic in my opinion. I mean, I cried – about a sports show!!! – that is so not me.

Bildergebnis für pitch we ain't done nothing yet gif

The OA

Still not sure what I watched there, but it was beautiful in a very strange and extremely disturbing way. I don’t think this show is for everyone, it’s about one of the slowest stories I’ve encountered as of late (next to another show that will show up later on) and it has gotten a lot of mixed review. Personally I can recommend it and also to go in knowing as little as possible. It was one of those rare surprises for me and I hope that somehow that story isn’t over yet.

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The Royals

The wait for Season 3 was real! I danced through my room when it was finally back. I don’t care that it’s overly dramatic and cheesy, because that’s just how the show is. I can still predict some of the plot twists, but I don’t care, this is one of the shows I enjoy watching the most. With the return of a certain someone, I cannot wait for the new episodes next week!

Younger

You want to watch a fun show about a woman in publishing? Go watch Younger! Bonus, she has to pretend to be in her twenties even though she’s about 40. IT IS SO MUCH FUN!

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Stranger Things

Sometimes I just give in to hype and I am so very glad I did not regret doing so with Stranger Things. It was an 80s nostalgia bomb and I weirdly didn’t find it all that scary. They did the whole monster-thing the smart way, by not revealing it for several episodes. And I read a lot of interviews and it’s so interesting to see how they changed a lot of the story and characters while shooting, simply because the actors/actresses provided more than they hoped for. Also, #JusticeForBarb! (I want her pop funko figurine for sure)

Ähnliches Foto

Sense8

I have a dramatic love/hate-relationship with Sense8. I ADORE the show itself, I HATE the wait for the new season. I was craving something new, so naturally I couldn’t restrain myself and watched the Christmas Special … and I cried and I laughed and I was reminded why I love these characters so much … AND NOW I HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL MAY!?!?!? How is that fair???

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Rectify

I found this gem just in time to watch its final episodes unfold. Hidden somewhere on Sundance TV, I didn’t even know it existed a couple weeks ago, but now I am strongly convinced that this was one of the most powerful and gorgeous stories of the year. It’s about a man getting out of prison after having been in solitary confinement for somewhat 20 years. The journey into his mind, the painful and beautiful moments alike, where something memorable for sure. Also, this show manifested my love for Abigail Spencer for sure!

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Animal Kingdom

Very twisted, very violent, very surprised I liked this … but the guys below may have had something to do with it. (also, I’ve never seen the Australian movie this is based on)

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Victoria

Jenna Coleman, who is one of my actress-queens, playing an actual queen – count me in! Even though it’s based no Queen Victoria’s life, I was still as invested as ever when it came to her love life, her relationship to Lord M and Albert. So many feels!

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Poldark

I am so massively disappointed in Ross as a person, however, I wouldn’t miss a single episode of the show … ever? If I could have had my way, I would have had Demelza run off with Dwight, but whateves, he’s happy … for now … Demelza also better not have any reason to doubt her husband again.

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Sweet/Vicious

This one was another surprise. It seems over the top and to the point of silly sometimes, but I like the underlying message and support it offers. I would have never guessed that MTV would present us a show taking on rape culture and really condemning it too.

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Daredevil

I liked the first season of Daredevil but the second one was so much better. They perfectly introduced the Punisher and deservingly gave him a show of his own right after. Also, Karen stepped up her game in my opinion. Generally I just really enjoyed that season, even though it once more got more brutal.

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Honorable Mentions

This is the part where you realise that, yes, I am simply watching too many shows. I am just going to rattle off some more shows I enjoyed, because why not?

  • Gilmore Girls Revival
  • Timeless
  • Conviction
  • Notorious
  • The 100
  • Hit the Floor
  • Humans
  • Westworld
  • Shadowhunters (ONLY because of Malec)
  • iZombie
  • Jane the Virgin
  • The Librarians
  • Travelers
  • Game of Thrones
  • Vikings
  • Dark Matter
  • Lost Girl
  • Lucifer
  • The Magicians
  • Our Girl
  • All the CW superhero shows (Arrow, Supergirl, Flash, Legends of Tomorrow)

Now that I’ve mentioned as many more shows here as I have on the actual list … I think I should quit, even though I am pretty sure I could still come up with quite a couple of shows. Remind me, how do I have time for anything in life? Which shows have you watched? Which ones are your favourites?

Trailers You Might Have Missed (Nov 28 – Dec 4)

trailers

This week was exhausting, especially toady. So, it is late, I am beat, these are the trailers I found!

Movies

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

I LOVE THIS SO MUCH ALREADY!

The Mummy (Teaser)

This doesn’t have anything to do with the previous Mummy franchise, right? Because Tom Cruise would not fit into that.

Sleight

It’s MAGIC!

The Shack

I have not read the book. I have no opinion about it. I actually had to google that stuff to understand the trailer.

 

TV Shows

Riverdale

This show looks like book aesthetics strung together to create motion. I wanna watch it!

Sherlock (Season 4)

This better be good considering the wait.

Emerald City

It’s coming soon and it doesn’t look anything like Oz, but whatevs.

Nashville (Season 5)

So, I guess Juliette won’t die … right?

Big Little Lies

Uhm, that cast does not look like a TV show kind of cast …

What are you going to watch? What are you watching right now? Let’s talk!