Monthly Archives: August 2017

Where did I come from? (My Ancestry DNA results)

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The full kit.

 

So a few months back, I spit in a little plastic tube and mailed it off to some scientists to figure out where I came from. Let me just say, I was so excited and kept checking my email everyday in the hopes of receiving my results.

It took awhile, about two or three months to get them back. And what I found out, wasn’t a huge surprise. It was when I dived deeper, that I found out some cool stuff.

AncestryDNAtube
You have to fill the tube up to the wavy line with your saliva. It’s not as easy as it looks.

 

Growing up, my granny always told me I was Irish and Cherokee, she even tried to teach me how to do an Irish jig. I believed her, figuring everyone had a little bit of Irish in them.

SO, I got the results back and I’m honestly not too surprised! Between my grandma insisting for years that we were Irish and a assignment in middle school where we needed to figure out our heritage, the results were pretty on point.

Here’s the breakdown:

Screen shot 2017-07-06 at 9.03.07 AM

 

 

I did find out that I have a tiny percentage (2%) that’s from a small area of Germany. I actually visited it last summer when I went with my husband and in-laws. That was pretty cool to learn. Though if I had knew this when I visited, it would have been an even cooler experience.

Schwäbisch Hall
Schwäbisch Hall

 

I also find it funny that once my ancestors migrated from Europe, they pretty much Screen shot 2017-07-06 at 9.04.27 AMstayed put in the Midwest. Literally, if you were to look at a map, they didn’t go much further than Kentucky.

 

I’m pretty pleased with my Ancestry experience. It’s cool to find out where I came from. I recently went to a Ren Fair and even bought a Scottish Pride kilt since I’m mostly from there. I’m so excited to be able to even say that I’m a little bit Irish this St. Patrick’s Day. I’ve watched more Outlander and everything because of these results. 🙂

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Trust by Kylie Scott Book Review

Title: Trust34776338

Author: Kylie Scott

Genre: Young/New Adult

Rating: 3/5 Stars




 

Being young is all about the experiences: the first time you skip school, the first time you fall in love…the first time someone holds a gun to your head.

After being held hostage during a robbery at the local convenience store, seventeen-year-old Edie finds her attitude about life shattered. Unwilling to put up with the snobbery and bullying at her private school, she enrolls at the local public high school, crossing paths with John. The boy who risked his life to save hers.

While Edie’s beginning to run wild, however, John’s just starting to settle down. After years of partying and dealing drugs with his older brother, he’s going straight—getting to class on time, and thinking about the future.

An unlikely bond grows between the two as John keeps Edie out of trouble and helps her broaden her horizons. But when he helps her out with another first—losing her virginity—their friendship gets complicated.

Meanwhile, Edie and John are pulled back into the dangerous world they narrowly escaped. They were lucky to survive the first time, but this time they have more to lose—each other.




 

I received an eARC of this book via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

Lately, I haven’t been breezing through books, but this one, I did! From the very first chapter, I was drawn in and couldn’t put the novel down. That being said, it wasn’t great writing either. It wasn’t beautifully written like the latest Sarah Dessen and it wasn’t ‘life-changing’, but it was very interesting and I’ll give it a ‘okay’ rating for that.

This wasn’t an insta-romance either, which was surprisingly pleasant since I love that troupe. It was more so, ‘insta-crush’. Edie and John go through a traumatic event together, but they don’t immediately want to date. John tries to protect her from his bad boy image, worried people will judge her for being associated with an ex-drug dealer.

I kind of got tired of hearing about the weight of our main character. In my eyes, she wasn’t fat, I couldn’t tell if she was huge or just a little chubby. I don’t think the weight of our character matters much unless it’s part of the plot like in Dumplin’. I feel like in order to make her weight a bigger deal, more people should have been picking on her for that.

The constant underage partying was also an issue for me. I get high schoolers party on occasion, but it felt like that was all Edie and her friends did. Constant underage drinking, sex, ect… I would classify this book as new adult, rather than young adult, because of these topics.

I loved John in the robbery scene, but he fell short after that. During the robbery, John was so kind and social, but after that, we just got grunt responses from him. He seemed to act like Edie was pesky to him. I know John was going through a lot with his brother, and the robbery, but he changed a lot from the guy he was at the gas station.

I’m  also pretty sure Kylie Scott might be a pen name… possibly Kevin/Hedwig from Split has written this book, with all the etceteras in the beginning….

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Overall, I did like the book, but I felt like it had a lot of issues that still needed to be worked out. I plan on reading more from Kylie Scott in the next few months. Always willing to give an author a second shot!

 

Once and For All by Sarah Dessen Book Review

Title: Once and For All32731231

Author: Sarah Dessen

Genre: Young Adult (though, I’d recommend over the age of 16 to read this one due to some content).

Rating: 5/5 Stars




 

Louna, daughter of famed wedding planner Natalie Barrett, has seen every sort of wedding: on the beach, at historic mansions, in fancy hotels and clubs. Perhaps that’s why she’s cynical about happily-ever-after endings, especially since her own first love ended tragically. When Louna meets charming, happy-go-lucky serial dater Ambrose, she holds him at arm’s length. But Ambrose isn’t about to be discouraged, now that he’s met the one girl he really wants.




 

I thought this was going to be just another lighthearted, summer YA by Dessen, but parts of it had my heart racing with fear. Though I didn’t love some of the content in this novel, there’s no way I could give this book any less than a 5 star rating because of how beautiful Dessen’s writing is.

The mother/daughter dynamic in this novel reminded me a lot of Lorelai and Rory from Gilmore Girls, which I adored. I love when authors remember to keep the parents of a YA novel involved with their child and this one did great at that.

There were also a few side characters that I enjoyed, mostly her best friends brother, Crawford. Though he had few lines, he had me cracking up with his honesty.

And it’s not a Dessen book without the love interest… or shall I say, not so much of a love interest. I was not a fan of Ambrose for the most part, this was the first time I’ve not been interested in the main characters potential suitor. I hated how he was a serial dater and was way too friendly with every woman he met.

And then there’s Ethan… he seemed like the perfect boyfriend but sadly, the unthinkable happened and I just could not handle his storyline. This was probably the most troublesome plot (emotionally) that I remember reading from Dessen.

 

 

Camp NaNoWriMo Recap: July 2017 Session AND July Wrap Up/August TBR

Camp NaNoWriMo Recap

Camp NaNoWriMo didn’t go as awesome as I anticipated. I slacked off…. a ton. Spent many weekends out on the lake or in the mountains (made for some good inspiration) but I didn’t write too much. Weekends are usually big for my writing, always my catch up time but I got lazy. I also got really into the books that I was reading and preferred to spend my time doing that.

I did get some words written though. The main goal I had was to not force the words to come out. I did that during the April session and it was mentally miserable. I didn’t want to write or edit for a month after that.

During July, I tried something new. If I got stuck on a chapter, I’d step away and work on another one that I had outlined. This was nice because I could knock out a couple thousand words immediately instead of being stuck.

My cabin did pretty well too, we kept up with the pace for a little over halfway through camp which is way better than normal. I created a private cabin with a few cabin mates from the first session and other NaNo-ers (that’s so not a word…) that they knew from previous years.

Here’s my stats for the month:

 

By the end of the month, I fell short and gave up. Pretty much going MIA in my cabin. I just got too caught up in reading, which isn’t a bad thing. I also got into taking Barre fitness classes and those took up a decent amount of writing time, I figured my health was more important.

Next Step? Edit what I’ve written so far, fill in some plot holes, and finish the novel.

For the official NaNoWriMo, I’m planning on working on a new piece that I got inspiration for halfway through camp. I’m very excited for it! Check back in November for my prep and recap on Novel Writing Month!

If you do NaNoWriMo, add me on the site! Username: anna.mounce

 

July Wrap Up

 

Bad Penny by Staci Hart– 3/5 Stars. Loved how this book started out, but gradually got tired of the back and forth of ‘I love him, but I don’t want to be in a relationship’. Needed different conflict.

Once and For All by Sarah Dessen– 5/5 Stars. As always, Dessen’s novels are beautifully written. I’d feel bad giving her anything less than four stars. This novel was probably the strongest and saddest subject matter I’ve ever read from her. It’s not your typical fun YA summer read. It haunted me. Once and For All is also the book that has completed my GoodReads challenge goal! I don’t plan on stopping here though! Let’s see how many books I can go over this year!

Trust by Kylie Scott– 3/5 Stars. I received this book via NetGalley in return for an honest review. I loved it toward the beginning but it fell short and the climax seemed very delayed. The beginning and end were amazing! I do plan on trying out more of Kylie Scott’s novels. Full review coming soon!

August TBR

 

 

 

The Engagement Plot by Krista Phillips– This months NetGalley ARC! I don’t know much about this one, but I’m sure it will be a cute read.

Dirty (Book 1) by Kylie Scott- Decided to give her adult romance books a try. And what’s not to like about a tattooed guy on a book cover?

Dearly Departed (Grave Reminders Book 1) by Rachael Rawlings– Plan on starting this series with the arrival of fall just around the corner. It’s a three book series by a local (to me) author.

Wonderlost by Jen Malone- I feel like this one will be a great book to close the summer on!

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon- I probably won’t read more than the first two books mentioned because I should be receiving my own novel back to go over edits but if I do manage to get ahead. This will be the next one I pick up. I’m dying to see the movie, so I have to read this before then!