10 Times Lana Del Rey Mentioned a Book

I’m not sure if you are aware, but I am a huge Lana Del Rey fan. I know practically every song she’s ever done, including those unreleased songs you can find on YouTube. I’ve spent hours upon hours listening to her songs and analyzing her lyrics since I found her music as a high school senior… four years ago. (Wow how time flies.) I’ve always wanted to make a list of the times she’s made clear references to books and literature in her songwriting and here’s that list.

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My 2019 Reading Goals

The new year is finally here and in the hopes of broadening my horizons, I have a couple of book related challenges I’m looking forward this year.  

First, there’s the #LatinxLit2019 or #LatinxBooks2019 where I’ll be reading at least one book by a latino/a author every month. This past October I decided to only read books by Latinx authors and had so much fun doing so. That’s around the time I saw @guatemama_reads on IG doing this challenge and encouraged me to do the same for next year. If I follow through, and I expect that I will, I should have read 12 books by latinx authors by the end of the year.  

Some of the books I will hopefully read next year are: 

  • One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez 
  • Analee, In Real Life by Janelle Milanes 
  • Next Year in Havana by Chanel Cleeton
  • The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz 
  • Caramelo by Sandra Cisneros 
  • Woman Hollering Creek by Sandra Cisneros 
  • The Poet by Elizabeth Acevedo 
  • The Dirty Girls Club by Alisa Valdes 
  • I’m Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter by Erika L. Sanchez 
  • How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accent by Julia Alvarez 
  • Dreaming in Cuban by Christina Garcia 
  • In the Time of Butterflies by Julia Alvarez 

 Then there’s #10Book2FilmChallenge which is about reading 10 books and watching the film adaptation of those books. Some of the books on this list either already have movies, have movies coming out next year, or have had their movie or TV series rights bought.  

  • A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess 
  • The Color Purple by Alice Walker 
  • Emma by Jane Austen 
  • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte 
  • Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte 
  • Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy 
  • Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood 
  • Rich People Problems by Kevin Kwan
  • Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie 
  • Dracula by Bram Stoker 
  • In Beale Street Could Talk by James Baldwin 

Then there are books I have read already but for whatever reason I still haven’t watched the movie yet.  

  • Pride and Prejudice (series) 
  • Fahrenheit 451  
  • Beloved 
  • The Birds 

I still don’t know whether or not I want to scar my life with all the horrible and inaccurate movie adaptations of Frankenstein 

You can also find them on IG @10book2film where they will be hosting quarterly book readalongs, discussions, and giveaways (maybe). 

Apart from those two major challenges, I hope to follow long with two other monthly IG book clubs, @diverseclassics , who read classics by POC and marginalized voices. They’re the main reason why I read Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel in December and why I’m reading Race, Women, & Class by Angela Davis this January. Then there’s @worlds.between.words (also on IG), a monthly book club who are also focused on reading diversely but they pick more contemporary authors. I’ve been following them for a while now, but next year I’d like to commit to more than just following their page, so I will be reading If You Leave Me by Crystal Hana Kim this month, and hopefully their other picks in 2019.

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MUSIC MONDAY: “The Night We Met” by Lord Huron

TITLE: “The Night We Met”Related image
SINGER: Lord Huron
SONGWRITERS: Ben Schneider
ALBUM: Strange Trails
GENRE: Indie Rock | Indie Alternative
LENGTH: 3:28 minutes
LINKS: The Night We Met – Audio | The Night We Met – Lyric Video
MUSIC BOOK TIE-IN: The song was featured in the TV adaptation of Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher, and in the case I have read the book numerous times and have watched the first and second season of the show. Continue reading

5 Real Reasons Why I Buy Books

As much as I enjoy going to the library and checking out books for free, I also enjoy buying books to keep them for myself. Call me selfish if you want, but it’s nice to have books at my disposal instead of having to drive to the library for a book or two. But there are five major reasons why I buy them, and it’s not just the comforting feeling they bring me.

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Writing Poetry for Class – “My Only Light”

I don’t consider myself a poet, never have, never will be, and I’ll even be the first to admit that I completely suck at it. But, this past month I was taking a summer class on creative writing, which unfortunately (or fortunately) required me to write a couple of poems. I’m still no expert and according to my professor, my poetry could be better, which

I’m not disputing that my poetry needs work, but I am disputing that her feedback is lame. She said, “the literal situation needs to be clear” and that I should “”avoid language that is not concrete as in ‘hope in his eyes,’ “. Also, that I should “Think about whether you are, in fact, creating images.”

Normally, I love constructive criticism on my writing because I believe it will make me a better writer. However, this really rubbed me the wrong way because after so many years of reading poems in school as well as my own ventures, I couldn’t believe this was my feedback. 1) Because I’ve seen so many poems that are so vague they’re incomprehensible 2) I thought poetry was about playing with words and breaking the rules, simply because you can, and 3) All I was thinking about was imagery. More than anything, I think poetry, and all literature is about expression and evoking emotions.

Perhaps, she’s right, after all, she’s the professor and I’m the student writing bad poetry. However, I can’t shake this feeling that in this case, I’m not wrong, and that maybe her feedback is just B.S.

The following poem is one of the pieces I wrote for class and the only one I’m willing to share because. It’s not the original, and while it’s not the same one I submitted, it’s the version I liked best.

“My Only Light” by Saily Marrero

The sea glistened like his forehead
Slick, salty, and sweaty,
But with a hope in his eyes
Hotter than the sun above.

And my tearless tears;
Barren, hungry, and thirsty.
I grew desperate,
But that wasn’t new.

An entire lifetime on that island
Showed me nothing but needs,
And wants,
And only one viable option.

So we fled at night
In a sea of stars;
A pinpricked darkness,
Swallowing us whole.

With Esperanza in my arms
In 90 miles of darkness
She was my only light
The only light I saw.


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MUSIC MONDAY: “Wish That You Were Here” by Florence + The Machine

This is something I’ve been wanting to do on this blog for a while. I tend to talk about books, movies, and shows because they are narratives and I feel comfortable enough to review them and give my opinions on them. However, I can’t seem to do the same with music because I don’t know much about it other than knowing that I like listening to some songs more than others.

I am not a musical person, I don’t play instruments, and I cannot sing or keep a tune to save my life, but I do like listening to it. But, I am a reader and I love to listen and read the lyrics to songs. This is where the English major in me comes into play, because I love looking at lyrics and deciphering what they mean. It’s a lot like reading a poem, except you have a melody to accompanying it.

Anyway, this is a new feature I wanted to add to my blog. A couple of times a month, or whenever I can’t stop thinking about a song, I’ll post a lyric with my own interepretation of what that song means. I’ll probably be wrong, but I can’t wait to see what you guys think.

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3 Ways to Listen to Free Audiobooks

Audiobooks are a godsend! They are the solution to all those times you want to be reading but cannot.

Have a long drive ahead of you but you need to know what happens next in the book? Listen to the audiobook.

Can’t decide if showering is more important than reading your book? Listen to the audiobook while showering.

Need to catch up on your school reading by the end of the day? Listen to the audiobook all day until you do catch up.

There’s no book reading problem that an audiobook won’t solve. I’ve been using them for a while now and it has been life changing. However, I don’t actually buy any of them. Instead, I have magical ways of listening to them for free.

Image result for magic gif

Image result for magic gif

Ok, not really, but as a person who loves free stuff and great deals, I’ve made it my life’s mission to find them. Continue reading