The cover of the e-book The Ganga Shift on a mobile phone next to a grey vase and a read burning candle

The Ganga Shift

Title: The Ganga Shift

Author: Mary Bernsen

Published: Parliament House Press, 2018

The Ganga Shift

Isabella hasn’t had an easy life and this has led her to jail. Because of her background and her limited ties to the outside world, she is chosen for a government funded experiment on gene mutation. Her body however doesn’t react on this treatment as expected and in order to provoke the correct response out of her body she is tossed into a dome together with a group of shifters, whose only goal is to make Isabella shift too – even if they kill her in the process.

My Thoughts

One of the first things I often do when starting a new book is consider the title. In some cases I research it. This was one of those cases. The Ganga Shift. I didn’t know what to put in the word Ganga. And I was also somewhat unsure about Shift. Maybe this stems from me not being a native English speaker, or maybe I am just unschooled in this topic. My research however quikly led me to Hinduism, which I found odd, and I actually sort of dismissed it and instead accepted that I would find out during my read. And I did. And I hadn’t been far off. This amazed me and at the same time it made me so happy! I found it very refreshing to have a different cultural background to this kind of story and I loved that Hinduism played a role in this story.

Throughout the story Isabella grows to face the challenge she is met with and her change is evident. She is a very headstrong character, who is not afraid of asking for help, when she needs it. She is genuine and stubborn, and I found her to be very different from anyone I have ever met/read about before.

Chase and Brayden – her cell mates – are a couple of fun types too. Chase is this calm and controlled being, who meditates and who is very independent. Brayden is anything but. He is a young man with practically no manners (according to Chase) and he is very animalistic. The book changes POV between these three characters which gives a very dynamic reading experience, and also muliple POVs are just brilliant, because it broadens the view of each character, since we both get to follow their own mindset, but we also know what others think about them, despite what comes out of their mouth.

I really loved the Ganga Shift

It was so different, and so spectacular and I seriously loved the Hindu approach. I loved that the main character was a vegetarian, and even though it didn’t play a major role, but were more a character treat, it mattered, because I like when authors challenge conservative tropes.

I loved the love triangle between our main characters, although I am not quite sure I buy into it. The ending was fresh and concise, and despite the fact that I felt there were a few situations that moved by quite fast, it was an altogether marvellous, enthralling and refreshing read that I highly recommend you read!

Should you read it?

My feeling is, that if you enjoyed stories like Twilight, The Hunger Games, Song of Blood and Stone etc. then you will probably also enjoy this one. If you enjoy a headstrong female lead, a small love triangle, sci-fi books on DNA-alteration and paranormal shifting stories, then this could very well be a story you would also enjoy! And if you on top of that also like a book filled with cultural references, then I am sure you will love this!

Thanks

I would like to thank Parliament Hous Press for letting me review a copy of this book! I have been eyeing it since they announced the cover reveal of this book in January and I am so glad that I finally got to read it, and that it was such an amazing experience!

Begin Again by Mona Kasten on a wooden table next to a flower

Begin Again

Author: Mona Kasten

Published: Bastei Entertainment, 2017

Series: Again #1

I first saw Begin Again in an Instagram post by Buecherpalast (who by the way has an amazing feed) and was sold immediately by its amazing cover! After a while though, I realised that the book was only available in German and although I understand German alright I am nowhere near being able to read a book in German. However, a little over a week ago I realised that Begin Again had been published in English and I quickly applied and was approved for an EARC by Bastei Entertainment through Netgalley – which by the way was amazing and so unexpected!

It took me only a few days to read it, but had I not been on a road trip for two of those I would have read it in one sitting.

Begin Again – The Book

Allie is a strong young woman, who moves to Woodshill, Oregon to get away from her family and begin her own life as the person she feels she wants to be.
Kaden is the brusque and handsome young man, who owns the apartment, that Allie hopes to rent a room in for the duration of her college time in town.
Of course there’s tension between them from the start and Kaden comes across as being very arrogant, authoritative and even sort of sexist. Allie takes his behaviour because of her desperate need for a place to stay, but also because of her sincere physical attraction to him, which is at times almost erotic to read about.
Kaden slowly warms to her presence and begins to take her places and show her the town, all while Allie is making great friends on her own.

The scenes between Kaden and Allie are written extremely well, and as a reader you can feel the electricity between the two roomies and the attraction between them that Allie tries to ignore. As Allie is trying to start her new life, even the reader is kept in the dark about her past, and must wait for her to be ready to unfold her past life to us as well as her friends.

My Thoughts

This was such a sweet read and I was hooked from the very beginning to the end. Surely we’ve read about these type of characters before: The young woman, who wants to create her own life, and the apparently strong young man with a bad boy attitude and a broken soul beneath, who merely needs to heal before being the perfect guy. This does not mean that the book doesn’t have to be read though, since Kasten writes amazingly well and creates wonderful characters that you want to follow! I especially liked the relationship between Allie and Kaden, which was described so vividly. This is also one of those books that introduce the reader to diversity without pushing it down one’s throat, which I felt was refreshing.

Begin Again is the first book in the Again-series and the next two have quickly become highly anticipated reads of mine! I constantly wanted to know more about the lead characters and to see how their lifes unfolded. I sincerely hope that it will be published in Danish sometime soon.

Should You Read It?

If you enjoy stories like Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James or the After-series by Anna Todd, then I really think you would enjoy Begin Again. I know I did and am now impatiently waiting for the rest of the series to be translated into English (or Danish if any publishing houses here would be interested).

The crime fiction book Ligblomsten by Anne Mette Hancock on a flowery background next to a bookmark

Ligblomsten

Author: Anne Mette Hancock

Published: Lindhardt og Ringhof, 2017

The book

Ligblomsten (Titan Arum – look it up, you’ll be surprised) is the first crime novel from Anne Mette Hancock. We follow Heloise, a journalist who has recently had some credibility issues at her work place. Heloise is a young and sturdy woman, who suddenly finds herself entwined in an old murder case, because she begins to receive letters from a woman named Anna Kiel. The woman who is wanted for a murder commited years ago. With the help of policeman Erik Schäfer she tries to unfold the mystery that connects her to this old case and the killer on the run.

My thoughts

I loved this one. Okay, there I said it – you can stop reading the review now.

No really, I really enjoyed this book so much. I have had cravings for crime fiction for months now, but had some other books I needed to finish, yet after Christmas I found some time to get started. And what a start.

Ligblomsten is told through various points of views, which is something I am often very fond of, because it adds perspective to the story. In a crime novel it also adds mystery through ‘the pronoun game’. You know, when everybody is always referring to “he” and “him”, but never mentioning a name or something personal that will make you realise who is in fact talked about. That ‘pronoun game’. This is no exception, and Hancock makes it work. I was constantly trying to figure out who was connected to whom, and who “he” could be.

At the same time the story is carried by a varied gallery of characters, who are actually very believable and likeable. I didn’t get very far into the story before I thought: “Oh no, I am going to hate this person.” But I didn’t. Despite the character having traits that I normally find very annoying in book characters.

I liked that we mostly follow Heloise instead of the investigators, since it made the story much more suitable for us laypeople. Crime novels tend to be a little to heavy on the police/investigation perspective, and then they lose me. This book however managed to balance the two worlds to perfection. In doing this, we readers are introduced to the private lives of Heloise and Schäfer, which adds to their character and gives us a deeper understanding of the two.

Both Heloise and Schäfer are very likeable, and as I have already mentioned, they are also very believable characters. I really look forward to reading a lot more about these two and the adventures (or horrors) they’ll come across!

This is by far not the last book by Anne Mette Hancock that I will read.

Should you read it

I gave this book five stars on Goodreads and if you like a well-planned plot, an exciting and well-written story that is hard to figure out you should read this one. Moreover, the characters felt very human, and that just makes the reading experience so much better. Whether or not you like these characters has an impact on your experience too, of course, but I am positive that both hardcore crime fiction fans as well as new and curious crime fiction readers will find this book exciting and wonderful!

Bogforum 2017

Bogforum is a major book fair held each year in Copenhagen. It concentrates on all kinds of books, both physical copies, audio- and e-books. All kinds of genres are also represented; be it kids’ fiction, romance, crime or ya fiction, or even non-fiction. Bogforum is held every year in early/mid-November. Bogforum is probably every book lover’s paradise.

Bogforum

Last year I went to Bogforum for the very first time. I had won a pair of entry tickets in a competition held by a Danish book blogger. It was an incredible experience, where I was overwhelmed by how big the whole thing was. This year I decided to swing by after school on Friday and this year I went alone. Beforehand, I had tried to make a plan for my visit, but there are just so many things to see, so many stands to visit and authors to sneak peek at. I am one of the fangirls, who is completely starstruck by writers (and other kinds of well-known/famous people). I blush. My voice trembles. I feel hot and my hands turn to faucets. I am sure I do not make a great impression. 😉

On a side note: I once went to a book release event in a book store, and I ended up wandering about for an hour casting long glances at the author standig with her book and sodas and crisps and cookies before finally admitting to myself that me meeting her would never happen. Then I went home.

But I am working on this! I keep telling myself that these authors are just people like me, who manages to turn their dream of writing into some kind of work. I tell myself they work hard, and that to them, I am sort of the hero; because I read their work and love it.

Okay, side note over. I had a plan, but once again when I stepped in I was taken aback by how big the whole thing was. I didn’t see nearly half of all the things I wanted. Sometimes because I got lost. Other times it was because I got sidetracked by something interesting and lost track of time. Or simply just decided to stay instead of moving on.

Crime fiction

Something has recently sparked my love for crime fiction. I think it was reading The Butterfly Garden (which I keep coming back to, so I need to make a review of it soon!) and being introduced to Karin Slaughter through “Pretty Girls”. So I went to Krimimessen Horsens’ stand to listen to clever people discuss various authors’ books. I especially wanted to hear Katrine Engberg talk about Blodmåne (Blood Moon), since I think it sounds really interesting. Yet it is the second book in the series and I didn’t really feel the same way about reading the first one. However, seeing her on stage being all casual and smiling, telling us about the characters from the novels, I decided on reading the first one before getting my hands on the second one. I am one of those, who hates it (okay, I don’t hate it, but I really don’t like it) when books from the same series do not match. I cannot have a soft and a hard copy in the same series. I cannot have a movie-inspired cover and a non-movie-inspired cover and I cannot have two books with different heights. And I could only find Krokodillevogteren (the first in the series) as a paperback, and Blodmåne as a hard copy.

I also went to get a copy of Julie Hastrup’s Mirakelmanden signed for my grandmother, but only too late did I realise that Julie Hastrup didn’t show up to sign books until Sunday, where I wouldn’t be there. Last year I didn’t get a copy of Jussi Adler-Olsen’s Selfies signed, because I was scared of meeting him. Next year I will plan it better!

I did however manage to do something right. Dennis Jürgensen was there to sign his books and I got a hold of two of the books in hise crime fiction series for my sister in law. Yay for me!

Work related book buy

I managed to get three books signed and I am beyond thrilled about that! From now on I know that I can do it! (Hopefully.) The last book I got signed was “Cutter” by Peter Solberg Dirksen. I have wanted to buy this for quite some time now, and the thing that actualla made me buy it now was the fact that there was a booklet containing teaching material, that I could grab with me as well. Also I got to have a chat with the author about the book, the teaching material, family, life and inspiration for the book. And I felt almost calm all the time, and almost not at all starstruck. I am excited to get started on this, but I think it will be a spring/summer project. I have a tendency to get a little tiny bit (yet not at all clinically!) depressed during the dark hours of autumn and winter.

Next year I will come prepared: bringing with me a ton of books that I want to get signed! And I will come for more than a day I think, because I simply cannot see everything in a day.

A young woman (me) reading a book in the forest

Desert Skies, Rebel Souls

I have had the fantastic opportunity of interviewing M.P. Tonnesen, author of “The Cosmopolitan Islander”, in connection with the publication of her newest novel: “Desert Skies, Rebel Souls”. You can read her answers below, and at the end of this post I’ve put a short review of the book and a few links to buy it in case you feel inspired to do so. Enjoy 🙂

M.P. Tonnesen

The author M. P. Tonnesen

M.P. Tonnesen is a writer and businesswoman living on the Isle of Man in the Irish Sea. She was born in Denmark, but grew up in a multicultural family and has lived in Brussels, the Middle East, and London before moving to the island with her family in 2011.

She authors contemporary and women’s fiction with an adventurous twist. Her books are inspired by her experiences working, living and travelling around the world.

She enjoys reading and telling good stories, travelling and eating dark chocolate. She also dabbles in yoga, pilates and juggling two kids.

Interview

Tell us something about yourself, that not many people know about you.
I love stripes! On bedlinen, cushions, tea towels, table cloths – and mainly my clothes. I must have a gazillion Breton striped tops and dresses! I think (read: wish!) I was Coco Chanel in my previous life – or a sailor 😉 They just make me happy, calm and comfortable.

When was your first book published and how was the process of getting it published?
My debut novel, “The Cosmopolitan Islander”, was published in November 2015. I self-published via Amazon’s company CreateSpace. One of the things holding me back from starting to write years ago was the worry of not being accepted by a publisher and the struggle to get past the piles of other manuscripts and rejection letters, through that tiny keyhole to become a published author. Luckily, things have changed so much in the industry over the last 10 years with the advent of the e-book making publishing much more accessible. This does not mean self-publishing is the easy route. It was definitely a steep learning curve! There are lots of new challenges and potential pitfalls every day. I like having control of the process, but it also means a lot of work for a one-woman-army. Plus, self-publishing is not the gold rush it initially was. There are so many self-published books out there now of varying quality, it can be very difficult to stand out from the crowd. Self-publishing is a tough, but fun challenge.

When did you first know, that you wanted to be an author?
Words and playing with them have always been a great interest of mine. I learned to read and write at the age of four and I haven’t stopped since. I am a linguist at heart, grew up in a bilingual family, and speak four languages. I have written for many years, but it was primarily non-fiction; academic papers and corporate communication. Some years ago I had a career break during which I reflected on what to do with my life and what would bring me happiness – a lot like Chloe, the protagonist in my debut novel. I did not have the courage or financial stability back then to take that first step which I was finally able to do years later – starting with a few scribbles in a notebook and a writing course at London School of Journalism which whet my appetite further. When we moved to the island it opened the door for me to the opportunity of being more serious about my writing. I was lucky to become a writer here for Gallery and Agenda Magazines, alongside working on my novels and running my consulting business.

What inspires you to write?
Writing is like dreaming in a waking state. You tap into those deeper layers of your imagination and emotions to create a world. My whole cast of characters and their stories are inspired by lots of different people and events – real as well as fictional. TV series, films, current and historical events, friends, family, random strangers in the street, park, restaurant or when travelling – they have all inspired me and triggered different scenes and feelings I could channel into my novels. I was shamelessly hooked on the series Scandal when I started writing Desert Skies, Rebel Souls which is where I got Olivia’s name from 😉 I’m also a big Outlander fan and was keen to emulate the amazing chemistry between Claire and Jamie. I hope I’ve managed to channel even just half of their passion into my characters!

What’s the best advice you can give aspiring writers?
I believe most people have a story in them, but few get the chance to express it. It takes time and dedication – and a bit of wordsmithing skills. But go for it! Nothing ventured, nothing gained is my motto. Persistence is the key throughout – from actually completing a piece of writing to getting it out there to potential readers. Whether you are self-published or traditionally published, authors are expected to promote themselves and their books today. The key thing to remember is: Sell one book at a time. When I was knocking on the doors of bookshops, a supportive soul at Daunt Books in London told me: It’s a marathon – not a sprint. I have found that a really helpful mantra.

What can we expect from your new book?
Desert Skies, Rebel Souls is a unique coming-of-age story of self-discovery and rebellion. It is set in the Middle East and follows the journey of a young woman, Olivia, from Denmark to a region rich in history, culture, conflict and passion. A whirlwind romance with a local kibbutznik, Chaim, takes a dramatic turn, leaving her caught between countries, belonging nowhere, and with the love of her life in danger far away. She explores magnificent historical sights and cultural experiences, encounters the dangers of travelling unaccompanied in a male-dominated society, as well as questions the concepts of hatred, fate, war and peace. It is a bittersweet love story set under the desert sky, against the backdrop of music and key events of the nineties – to be enjoyed by adventurous globetrotters and readers longing to escape. “Desert Skies, Rebel Souls” will be released on 10/11/17, and is available for order now from my website mptonnesen.com I hope you will enjoy it!

What is your favourite book?
One of the few books to which I keep returning is The Sense of An Ending by Julian Barnes. I really enjoy his musings around time, being and novels, as well as his style and language which are very succinct and even melancholic. I look forward to watching the movie version starring Jim Broadbent!

What are you currently reading?
Swing Time by Zadie Smith. I had the great pleasure of meeting her in Denmark this summer at Louisiana Literature Festival. She not only signed her own book, but also my debut novel! It was a surreal, but magical fangirl moment.

What is your favourite reading snack or accessory?
My own mix of organic almonds and raisins – and dark chocolate, of course!

If anything was possible, what could then be a perfect day for you? What would you do, where would you go?
I would lounge in the sun on an exotic island, reading books, eating delicious food and just looking at the mesmerising endless shades of blue as I listen to the calming sounds of the sea.

Now, tell us a six-word story 🙂
She wrote “Goodbye” with his blood.

Desert Skies, Rebel Souls

My thoughts

The front cover of Desert Skies, Rebel Souls

“Desert Skies, Rebel Souls” is a beautiful travel story about rebelling against the expectations of others, about love and clash of cultures. We follow the main character Olivia, a Danish girl, on her travel to Israel. She is fighting to find her own way through life instead of following the norms and expectations of her family. In Israel she connects with a young man, who becomes a very important part of Olivia’s discovery and her road to self-reliance.

The descriptions of the places that the main character Olivia visits are written so well and so beautifully that I felt an urge to go see them for myself when reading about them. Yet I can relate to the insecurities that follow young women travelling on their own and do not miss that part of travelling.

Like in The Cosmopolitan Islander, M.P. Tonnesen manages to write a believable main character, whom I both like and dislike; which is a strength I really appreciate. It gives a depth to the characters and makes them seem more real to me. I love when characters are flawed and I love a good story about personal development.

If you enjoy a good love story, reading about travels and to get the sweet feeling of wanderlust from a book, I can recommend you read “Desert Skies, Rebel Souls”. It will take you places if only you let it. The book is an easy-read that wants to make sure the story is told just right, in order to give the reader a great reading experience.

OKay, so how do you get your hands on it?

“Desert Skies, Rebel Souls” is released today and is thus available for purchase right now! You can find the kindle edition right here, but it is also available for other e-book channels. As mentioned in her interview it is also possible to order a physical copy from her website, but this can also be done from your preferred Amazonsite.

Blog tour

Remember to swing by TripFiction and Devilishly Delicious Book Reviews today for more thoughts on “Desert Skies, Rebel Souls” and have a look at the this blog tour schedule to see who to visit next:

A list of the blogs that participate in this blog tour along with the dates each blog participates

Thanks

On a final note I would like to give my heartfelt thanks to the author for letting me interview her and for sharing herself with me and you guys. I want to thank her for sending me an ARC of the book and I am grateful that she was interested in hearing my thoughts on her book baby “Desert Skies, Rebel Souls”.
I sincerely appreciate working with her on this blog tour and wish her all the best!

The book Provinspis on a table next to a passport.

Provinspis

Author: Ditte Wiese

Published: Carlsen, 2017

Serie: Sonar

Provinspis – the book

Ida is a young girl living in a Danish province. Her mother, who is French, left many years ago after having withered away in Denmark for a long time. Ida mostly feels the same way about the small town that she lives in; it is boring as hell. Luckily her best friend Jon lives only 185 steps further down her street and she is always welcome at his place, which she benefits from on the nights where her own house is filled with the yelling of her dad and his girlfriend. Ida dreams of the day she can leave the town behond and travel out into the world; she just has to finish gymnasiet (high school/upper secondary)! She spends a lot of time working in the local grocery store, in order to save up for the travels she plans. And she needs to survive the boredom, which she does through sex, drugs and alcohol.

But something happens. Like things always do. Finishing her education suddenly doesn’t seem so easy. Being friends with Jon is suddenly not so easy; especially not while he is hooking up with Ida’s only girlfriend. Yet growing up means dealing with these kinds of things, and so Ida does. The only way she knows how.

my thoughts

(be aware of possible spoilers)

I was swept away by Ida and her struggles. To be honest, I don’t think I would have befriended Ida had I known her, which makes me feel sad, because she really needs a proper friend. My heart broke a little all the time she was left on her own. Even when she, in some way, caused it herself. The story is told through Ida’s point of view, which creates a beautiful layered experience, when reading the story, because everything is told through her language. I loved how the book slowly builds up to something, that I had a hard time figuring out, and at times I honestly felt as confused as Ida, which is why I never really believed myself, when I thought I knew what would happen next.

Provinspis is both a beautiful and an awful story about growing up and finding yourself in the world. Ida says: “The meaning of life is to be other places“, which I feel is so essential to the character of Ida. Even when she genuinly enjoys herself in the small town, she needs to get away. In many ways her story reminds me of Edith Wharton’s “Summer”, where the main character Charity constantly searches for the place she belongs; the place she can call home. Ida is searching for the same thing, really. Believing she will find herself, when she gets to the right place. Believing that there is so much of her mother in her, that she will never find peace in a small town in one of the provinces of Denmark.

Should you read it?

Provinspis is an honest story. The language is youthful, which is important since the target group is young adults. Ida is an average girl, who most young adults will be able to identify with. She is strong and outgoing, yet vulnerable and insecure. Everybody can benefit from reading this. The younger ones can maybe identify with Ida or one of the other characters in the book, which can sometimes help them in their own search for themselves. Parents can get some insight into the mind of a young girl, which may help them through their child’s process of growing up. Everybody will get an exceptionally brutally honest and wonderful reading experience, where the more experienced reader wil notice the layers, use of language and how the text combines form and content.

So the short answer is: Yes, you should read it.

The Winner's Kiss, on a table

The Winner’s Curse

The Winner’s Curse is the first book of The Winner’s Trilogy by Marie Rutkoski.

I first began reading The Winner’s Curse on my Kindle, but I didn’t get very far into it before I decided that I had to own the trilogy as physical copies. The Winner’s Curse was so good and the books are so pretty! And I am that vain.

It turned out to be a good choice, since The Winner’s Curse was a page-turner, that I devoured over the course of a weekend. The tone’s invigorating and although it is not a revolutionary story, it is a very good read.

The story is about Kestrel, a general’s daughter, who purchases a slave at the local market, even though she doesn’t really condone slavery – or at least not to the extend of her owning a slave. The slave she purchases is Arin, a skilled blacksmith, who – despite being a slave – manages to conduct himself with dignity. Arin is put to work at Kestrel’s father’s forge. At the same time he functions as Kestrel’s personal escort into town. This gives the two of them time to get to know each other.

The Winner’s Curse review: spoilers ahead

As these stories go, of course the one falls a teeny-tiny-bit in love with the other and vice versa, which evidently creates a problem. As I said; nothing revolutionary. I loved this book, though! It has it all: War, love, starcrossed lovers, hurt, hope, friends, pride, and I could go on.

I especially like Kestrel’s fierceness and how her personality embodies both the gentle and the stronger aspects of a person. At times, as with most young characters in stories, I tend to think that she is wise beyond her years, yet at other times, she is as stupid or as self-involved as a regular teenager can be. This is definitely a bonus, since I love when the characters seem ‘real’: Like they could be part of our world. Arin, on the other hand, is difficult for me to grasp. I never really buy the whole “He’s falling in love with her”-part, although it is apparent towards the end of the book, that he has felt this way for some time. He is a very private person, and I completely understand why that is, and that may be why I don’t really get him.

However, I think, that the book could have benefitted from having more thorough descriptions of his affection for Kestrel. And vice versa. Suddenly, I feel like I have not said enough positive things about this book. The Winner’s Curse does deserve to be praised. Although we have heard the story before, and met the characters one way or another, it is a very enjoyable read! I loved every page of it, and do already look forward to reading it again some day.

Girl in the woods, holding a book

To begin a blog

I have probably already welcomed you, but then I will just do it again: I am so thrilled that you have decided to drop by my blog and I hope you like it!

the beginning

I want to share with you some of the thoughts, fears and victories I have had while creating this book blog. Mostly because I at first thought, that having a blog was something that demanded I possessed some magical skills. Well, maybe not magical, but I was very much star struck by any other book blogger I would come across on the Internet, and thought that what they did, I could never do. I certainly thought that without an education within the field of literature, information science or the likes, I was not cut out to be a book blogger, and even if I tried I would crash and burn.

I say this, because there may be some of my site’s visitors, who secretly want to start a blog as well. It doesn’t have to be books, it could be anything, and I want you to know, that it can be done!

In October 2016 I actually started this blog. I bought a domain and began writing about the books I had read in several word documents, but it never seemed right. I never came up with something I actually wanted to share. At the same time I also started a bookstagram account on Instagram, which was a much better experience for me. Being online was never something I cared much about, and I guess, that that was what prevented me from truly starting the blog back in October. So I eased into it with Instagram.

Instagram

Instagram was fun. I remember hitting 17 followers and being full of joy that so many people actually cared about what I did (or at least cared enough to follow me). I remember hitting 56 followers and being all ecstatic over the number. From there it suddenly moved fast and I still cannot quite fathom that I have surpassed 300 followers. 300 people, who are interested in knowing what I put up! Of course some of those are of the “141” mentality (follow for follow), and they might not care at all what I put up, but I believe that most are genuinely interested. I know I am, whenever I choose to follow someone.

After a few months, I had gotten more used to being online and actively sharing thoughts and opinions, and thus I decided to begin working on my blog again. I was (and am) still scared that I might crash and burn: That I will realise that running a blog is too much work – too time consuming, or maybe even too boring. But I also know, that right now I really want to do this! I want to share my thoughts, ideas, opinions and experiences with you, and that’s what really matters.

the blog

I am, and always have been, technologically challenged. You can almost say, that I repel technology. Buying the domain was easy enough. Finding and installing a theme was harder. Making the theme fit what I had envisioned was problematic and I could not have done so without help. Luckily opposites attract, and it just so happens that my boyfriend works with multimedia. He could then help guide me through plugins and widgets and all those things I never knew existed. And so now, I am no longer scared of ruining something when I log in without him sitting next to me.

My goal was to create a blog that wasn’t too girly, but still didn’t look all minimalist, white and sterile. I am a colourful person, and I wanted the site to show that site of me. I am also a very disorganised person, and I really didn’t want the site to show that site of me. Cue, my very organised boyfriend to the rescue. I probably could have done this all by myself, but the result would not have been as pleasing as this.

I am not saying you need to know some multimedia specialist if you want to start your own blog. What I am saying is: A little help can go a long way.

Support

As I mentioned earlier, I was afraid to crash and burn with this project, and so I didn’t share my dreams with many friends or family. Looking back, I am not sure I would recommend doing that. It made me feel safe and comfortable, because if I failed, only a few would know. However, I think that their support and talents are something worth appreciating and can be put to good use. I used my boyfriend a lot. “Does this look good?”, “Would another colour work better here?”, “How do I create a new blog page?”, “I don’t like this feature – can it be removed?” and most importantly: “Will you please read this and tell me if I should correct anything.”

cherryblossomreads

To all of you, who made it down this far in the post: This is me. This is my blog. Shaped and censored to fit the online community, yet very honest and personal. It is my hope to some day be more personal. To share myself. Completely. Okay, not completely – I was just inspired by a quote from Fight Club. Words will do that to you. Creep under your skin. Live there and take control. And we often love that feeling. That feeling is what creates the worst, most prominent book hangovers. It is almost addictive. That feeling is the reason I read.

Wish me luck. Or don’t. I am beyond excited to finally be doing this! And that is what truly matters.