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I'm Aware I'm a Wolf

John Green’s Book Tour?!

If you haven’t heard, John Green (and his brother Hank) are currently going on tour in celebration of John’s newest book, Turtles All the Way Down!

I’ll be attending the one in Charlotte, NC, so if anyone else is planning to go to that location, let me know and maybe we can meet up there or something! Also, feel free to let me know what a blast you had if he’s already come to your area and you already went.

I’ve been so excited for this book to come out and now I’m even more excited because this will be my first time actually meeting John and Hank Green, who I’ve looked up to for a long time.

Any thoughts on either the book itself or the book tour? Let me know in the comments!

Dreamhost Review

***This is not a book-related post! Skip it if you’re not interested, but if you’re in the market for a web host, maybe give this post a read!***

For those of you who don’t know, this website is proudly and happily hosted by Dreamhost.

***Note: The links to Dreamhost are all affiliate links which would greatly help me out if you sign up for their services by using these links. The links to the other hosting sites mentioned are not affiliate links; they’re just there for convenience.

***Another Note: This post is NOT sponsored!!! I wrote it on my own accord because I’m so happy to have found such a great web host and want to help other people do the same.

In this post, I’m going to tell you a little bit about my experience with being hosted by Dreamhost and what I think of their services overall.

Star Rating

First of all, let’s start off with a star rating, reminiscent of my book reviews.

Rating: ★★★★★

That’s right, I give Dreamhost hosting a FULL FIVE STARS. I have used a couple of different hosting companies in the past, including 1and1 hosting and MediaTemple Hosting. 

Other Hosting Companies

Starting off, I’ll tell you a little bit about these two companies that I was previously using for hosting. If you’d like to skip forward to see what I have to say about Dreamhost, feel free to skip ahead to that section!

First of all, I started out using 1and1 hosting because I’d heard a lot of good things about them. Their service was alright, and I didn’t really have any problems, except for when it came time for me to cancel my service. At the time, I was cancelling my hosting service simply because I wasn’t really using it and I didn’t have the extra cash lying around to pay for a service that wasn’t being used. In order to cancel my service, I had to call 1and1 multiple times and talk to customer service reps who didn’t speak very good English. Overall, it was a tedious process that bothered me enough that I decided I wouldn’t be using 1and1 for hosting in the future ever again.

After using 1and1 and not being satisfied with it, I switched to MediaTemple hosting. MediaTemple was significantly more expensive than 1and1 was, even though I got mostly the same amount of features and benefits. I will say that I really appreciated the fresh design of the MediaTemple website, but that’s about all I can say to vouch for it. The service was just okay and wasn’t anything special, so when it came time to renew my service, I decided against it.

Finally, I found Dreamhost and decided to give them a try. Dreamhost web hosting starts at $7.95/month, which is a pretty average price when you take a look at all the available hosting options around the internet. I decided to give them a try because they were ranked highly in several reviews of web hosts I looked into, and because the price wasn’t too sky-high.

I’ve been hosted by Dreamhost for almost a full year now and I’m very happy to say that I’m 100% satisfied with Dreamhost as my web host. I haven’t had any issues at all, which is pretty rare considering there’s probably at least something to be dissatisfied with from most web hosts. But I’ve hosted several domains on Dreamhost‘s servers and I’ve never once been disappointed. Dreamhost is all I could ever ask for in a web host and I’m so happy I found Dreamhost after only two disappointing hosting experiences.

If you’re thinking of starting a website or blog, I highly, highly recommend using Dreamhost to host your website. You don’t have to buy your domains through Dreamhost (although they do offer that, if you want to), which is great because it allows you to shop around for the best domain price, and Dreamhost can still host your domain even if you bought it elsewhere – there’s lots of guides online about how to change your domain’s nameservers to your own host’s nameservers.

Dreamhost also offers other goodies besides just plain web hosting, like webmail for your domains and free One-Click Installs for lots of popular web software, like WordPress and PhpBB.

Overall, I think Dreamhost is no doubt the BEST web host out there, it’s affordable, and I’ve never experienced any problems at all with their services. I definitely recommend Dreamhost as a web host and I suggest you don’t waste your time with any other web hosts and go ahead and give Dreamhost a try if you’re thinking about starting your own website or blog.

Do you have experience with Dreamhost or with other web hosting sites? What are your thoughts and opinions? Let me know in the comments what you think!

Should Adults Read YA?

“A 2012 survey by a market research firm found that 55 percent of YA books are bought by people older than 18.”1 Should adults feel guilty about reading books written for a target audience of teenagers? In my opinion, no, they shouldn’t. However, there is a large demographic that believes otherwise: for instance, see this Slate article where the author shames adult readers for reading YA novels. He makes brash statements in his article, such as that adults “are asked to abandon the mature insights into that perspective that they (supposedly) have acquired as adults” when reading YA novels.

I, however, disagree with the author of that Slate article. I think it’s perfectly fine and even great when adults read YA fiction. They go in aware of the fact that they are not the target audience for the book and decide to enjoy it anyway, which I don’t see any problem with. Sometimes it’s nice, as an adult, to sit down with a bit of an “easier” book, one written for a younger audience, as a nice break from more complicated adult literature.

That’s not to say that I believe adults should abandon adult fiction entirely. I just believe that there’s something of worth to be found in both YA novels as well as novels written for adults, and there’s nothing wrong with reading a little bit of both as an adult.

The author of the aforementioned Slate article against adults reading YA says, “But if they are substituting maudlin teen dramas for the complexity of great adult literature, then they are missing something.” However, no one is saying that adults should only read Young Adult books, but rather that they should be free to read both YA and books written for full-grown adults. The more reading, the better, and I don’t see how restricting adults from reading YA books they might very well enjoy is helping anyone.

“There’s a special reward in that feeling of stretching yourself beyond the YA mark, akin to the excitement of graduating out of the kiddie pool and the rest of the padded trappings of childhood: It’s the thrill of growing up,” says the author of the Slate article that bashes adult YA readers. Adult readers of YA books do not miss out on the thrill of growing up; rather, they grow up just fine, whilst also managing to pick up some great YA reads along the way.

If you are an adult reader who likes to read YA, I say more power to you. There’s nothing wrong with enjoying a great piece of YA literature now and then, or even often, if that’s what you’re into. You should read what you enjoy, because that’s what reading is for: enjoyment. What you read is not supposed to be used as target for which a grown man shames you for what’s on your to-read list. It’s supposed to be fun.

For further reading, here are some articles in support of adults reading YA books:

What are your thoughts on adults reading YA books? Are you in favor of it or against it? Are you, yourself, and adult who likes to dabble in YA fiction?

Let me know your thoughts on this topic; I’m really interested to hear what everyone thinks in the comments!

Thanks for reading! 🙂

October TBR

It’s about time for an October TBR! I skipped making a September wrap-up because I only finished one book in September so I felt like it would be a little unnecessary, but here I am with my October TBR!

Here are the books I’m planning to read in the month of October

  • The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

  • The Idiot by Fyordor Dostoevsky

  • Walden and Civil Disobedience by Henry David Thoreau

As always, I’m keeping my TBR pretty short because I typically am only able to read, at most, a few books a month, so hopefully I’ll get around to reading each of these books that I mentioned above!

Have you ever read any of the books I mentioned? If so, what did you think of them? Let me know in the comments!

 

J.K. Rowling Masterpost

Who doesn’t love J.K. Rowling? That’s right, we all do! From the Harry Potter series to her standalone book, “The Casual Vacancy,” J.K. Rowling does not disappoint. This post is dedicated to her and I will write mini-reviews and rate her books that I’ve read so far.

First, let’s start off with the first Harry Potter book, “The Sorcerer’s Stone”:

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (Book #1)

Rating: ★★★★½

Review:

I give the first book in the Harry Potter series a rating of four and a half stars. I feel like everyone knows the plot of the book so I’ll skip detailing that and just say that I definitely enjoyed reading this book. It’s technically a middle-grade-level book so it’s absolutely an easy read, and it’s fast-paced so it’s quick to get through. This is one of the shorter books in the series so it doesn’t ever feel like it drags on or anything. This is a great start to the series and if you haven’t yet read the series, grab this book and get started, you won’t regret it!

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Book #2)

Rating: ★★★★

Review:

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets gets a solid four stars, in my opinion. It’s not my favorite book in the series but it’s still Harry Potter nonetheless and I don’t feel like I can give any Harry Potter book less than four stars because I did thoroughly enjoy reading each of the books in the series. Overall, it’s a solid continuation of the series.

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Book #3)

Rating: ★★★★½

Review:

The third book in the Harry Potter series gets a four and a half star review from me. Sirius Black is one of my favorite characters, so I really enjoyed reading about him throughout this book. Once again, a solid continuation of the Harry Potter series.

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Book #4)

Rating: ★★★★

Review:

I give the fourth book in the Harry Potter series a solid four stars. I think the premise of the competition that takes place in this book is really interesting and I really enjoyed the introduction of the other wizarding schools and the characters from them. I think this is a great middle-of-the-series book.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Book #5)

Rating: ★★★★

Review:

Again, I give the fifth book in the Harry Potter series a solid four stars. To be honest, I kind of forgot what happens in this book even though I’ve been pretty good about remembering what’s happened in the other books in the series, which leads me to believe that this book just wasn’t as… memorable in some aspects. Nonetheless, I still enjoyed this book and would recommend it, it just isn’t my favorite of the whole series.

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Book #6)

Rating: ★★★★

Review:

Once again, I give this book a solid four stars. I think this book is a fairly good lead-up to the seventh and final book in the series and creates a lot of much-appreciated suspense, but again, it just isn’t my absolute favorite in the series.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Book #7)

Rating: ★★★★★

Review:

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is my absolute favorite book in the entire series and an overall wonderful end to the series as well. Things finally start to get really interesting as the gang gets closer and closer to defeating Voldemort once and for all, and I also really enjoyed the final chapter that occurs a fair number of years into the future, letting us know how the gang ended up after some time has passed. I think this book was a great end to the series and it really made reading the whole series worthwhile, as the ending is very satisfying. No spoilers though, you’ll have to read it yourself!

Harry Potter Series

The Complete Harry Potter Series

Rating: ★★★★★
Review:

As far as the complete Harry Potter series goes, I just have to give it a full five star rating. The series is enjoyable, keeps you on your toes, is suspenseful and fulfilling, and is just genuinely a great, wholesome read. I’d highly recommend the series if there’s anyone out there who hasn’t read it already, and I’d recommend a re-read of the series to anyone who read it maybe when they were a bit younger and would like to refresh their memory and experience the Harry Potter series once again.

The Casual Vacancy

The Casual Vacancy

Rating: ★★★★★

Review:

The Casual Vacancy is a standalone book also by J.K. Rowling that, in my opinion, is seriously underrated. The book follows several characters in a small town in England, detailing each one’s interesting background and story. Although this book has an average Goodreads rating of only 3.28 out of five stars, I actually really enjoyed reading this novel and gave it a full five stars. I actually wasn’t too interested in reading it when it came out, simply because I saw that it didn’t have the best reviews, but I ended up reading it because it was chosen as a book club read and it turns out, I loved it! I’m so sad that this book hasn’t gotten the hype it deserves, but I highly recommend it. It’s completely different from J.K. Rowling’s other writing (middle-grade Harry Potter series), but I think that’s part of what makes it so great.

 

Okay, that’s the end of my J.K. Rowling Masterpost! I hope you enjoyed reading my mini-reviews for each of her books that I’ve read and if you haven’t read either the Harry Potter series or The Casual Vacancy, I hope I maybe inspired you to give them a try!

Have you read J.K. Rowling’s books? What did you think? Let me know in the comments!

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