Publisher: Macmillan

Book Review: Unf*ck Your Habitat: You’re Better Than Your Mess by Rachel Hoffman

Posted April 12, 2017 by Hillary in Book Reviews / 4 Comments

ISBN: 9781250102959
Book Review: Unf*ck Your Habitat: You’re Better Than Your Mess by Rachel HoffmanUnf*ck Your Habitat by Rachel Hoffman
Published by Macmillan on January 3rd 2017
Genres: House & Home, Self-Help, Motivational & Inspirational
Pages: 224
Source: library
Buy on Amazon
Goodreads
five-stars

Finally, a housekeeping and organizational system developed for those of us who'd describe our current living situation as a “f*cking mess” that we're desperate to fix. Unf*ck Your Habitat is for anyone who has been left behind by traditional aspirational systems. The ones that ignore single people with full-time jobs; people without kids but living with roommates; and people with mental illnesses or physical limitations. Most organizational books are aimed at traditional homemakers, DIYers, and people who seem to have unimaginable amounts of free time. They assume we all iron our sheets, have linen napkins to match our table runners, and can keep plants alive for longer than a week. Basically, they ignore most of us living here in the real world.
Interspersed with lists and challenges, this practical, no-nonsense advice relies on a 20/10 system (20 minutes of cleaning followed by a 10-minute break; no marathon cleaning allowed) to help you develop lifelong habits. It motivates you to embrace a new lifestyle in manageable sections so you can actually start applying the tactics as you progress. For everyone stuck between The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up and Adulting, this philosophy is decidedly more realistic than aspirational, but the goal is the same: not everyone will have a showcase of a home, but whatever your habitat, you deserve for it to bring you happiness, not stress.

This is a book that felt like it was written just for me. I admit it. I am a slob. However, my relationship with the Elf Prince has taken a serious turn, and I guess he expects the house that we will live in in the future to be reasonably clean. SO TIME TO GET MY ASS IN GEAR.

What I like about this book is that even though the author does have some nice talk moments most of the time it s advice like “ya gotta get off your ass” “it is gonna suck, no one likes cleaning” somehow hearing that cleaning sucks but that I DO deserve to live in a clean environment, so I just need to get up off my ass and do some 20/10’s.

The 20/10 is my favorite thing I have read out of all my cleaning books. I used to do the infamous marathon cleaning and let me tell you it has NEVER worked out well and it NEVER will. So I read to do what you can in 20 minutes and then take a ten-minute break. I downloaded the app onto my phone and made a list of all the shit I need to do and got my ass in gear and did some 20/10 and guess what my apt is now passably clean after only three days. I feel so proud.

She also gives the exact kind of pep talk that people like me need. Yes, Hillary, You have bipolar, and some days you won’t be able to get out of bed. That’s OK but the days when you feel fine to GET UP OFF YOUR ASS AND DO SOME 20/10’S!!! That kinda talk just fires me up. I know some people wouldn’t take kindly to the harshness of it, but for me, if you start me down the road to self-pity I will go down that path and never find my way back. I cant afford to do that, so I like the people that scream at me that all I need to do it to get off my damn ass and do some 20/10’s. Go to the Gym and even if you only walked ten mins that are better than sitting on my ass. Get up take a shower and put on clean PJ’s. Some day the gym and showering and putting on clean pj’s then going back to bed are all I can do, BUT I GOT OFF MY ASS. So see this is why I feel this book was written just for me.

I admit I was so inspired I bought the audio version to listen to while I clean. Hearing gets up off your ass, and all of that does pump some much-needed motivation in me.

Like I said I downloaded the app in the app store and made a list of all I need to get done and it will keep time for you. You push start and do everything you can in 20 mins then take a ten min break then work and break until u start to feel tired or antsy.

I am the ultimate slob, but this book has given me the tools and the mojo to unfuck my apt. Click To Tweet

I am gonna be honest most of my cleaning fears are because when I tried to help my mom when I was small, she would yell and scream at me for not doing it perfectly, so I quit. I DO have negative emotions tied to cleaning, and the book even addresses that. I was pleased. I was even more pleased with her suggestion you do 5 20/10? TREAT YO SELF! Go to the bookstore or get a massage or something. You gotta retrain your brain to like cleaning. I took it a step father and went and got some Mrs. Meyers stuff cause it all smalled like lavender. It cost a shitload in the health food store but I am going to try  Grove Collaborative         I will let y’all know how it goes.

No matter WHY you are a slob she addresses various reasons AND gives ways to get past the block and to get your house in order because the author is right, you DESERVE to live in a  clean environment, and you are better than your mess so buy this book and join me as we work to put out houses together!

five-stars

Blue Magic

Posted May 30, 2012 by Hillary in Book Reviews, fanasty, urban fanasty / 0 Comments

From Goodreads:blue magic

From Goodreads:

The sequel to Indigo Springs, “A psychologically astute, highly original debut—complex, eerie, and utterly believable.”  —Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review
This powerful sequel to the A.M. Dellamonica’s Sunburst Award–winning contemporary fantasy Indigo Springs starts in the small town in Oregon where Astrid Lethewood discovered an underground river of blue liquid—Vitagua—that is pure magic. Everything it touches is changed. The secret is out—and the world will never be the same. Astrid’s best friend, Sahara, has been corrupted by the blue magic, and now leads a cult that seeks to rule the world. Astrid, on the other hand, tries to heal the world.
Conflicting ambitions, star-crossed lovers, and those who fear and hate magic combine in a terrible conflagration, pitting friend against friend, magic against magic, and the power of nations against a small band of zealots, with the fate of the world at stake.

Blue Magic is a powerful story of private lives changed by earthshaking events that will ensnare readers in its poignant tale of a world touched by magic and plagued by its consequences.

My Review: This is a fantastic book! I loved it! I haven’t read the first book Indigo Springs but I will now make sure to read it. There is enough background story in Blue Magic so the reader does not feel all lost.

The story is told from several different viewpoints. Astrid, Ev (Astrid’s mother) Juanita’s and Will Forrest’s. Astrid is trying to control the amount of magic released into the real from the unreal. When magic ( a blue liquid called Vitagua) was pushed into the unreal by magic hating fyremen it froze the people in the unreal and cursed the people in the real who come into contact with it. Astrid must walk a delicate line in freeing the people from the unreal while negating the effects in the real. If that was not hard enough she must also deal with her ex lover and former best friend Sahara Knax who when contaminated by the magic went insane and now leads a cult and seeks to rule the world. The government is also trying to find Astrid and shut down the release of magic. Astrid also must deal with the confusing love interest Will.

The theme of what is good and how far one will go to try and do good deeds in the face of impending disaster is prevalent in this book. Astrid wants to free everyone including those trapped in the unreal but she also does not want to hurt anyone who may be contaminated by the magic. In her effort to balance all of this she finds herself drawn deeper into different conflicts that lead to her ultimate betrayal.

The plot twist that happened was so good that I did not even see it coming. It added a whole new angle to to the story.

There were times I thought that all the lose ends of the story could not possibly fit together but at the end I was pleasantly surprised. The ending was even better than I imagined it.

This book is a enjoyable read. The plot was tight the dialogue was brilliant and the characters suck you into the story. This book is highly recommended.

five-stars

Review:Dreadnought

Posted June 20, 2011 by Hillary in Book Reviews, steampunk / 0 Comments

Review:DreadnoughtDreadnought by Cherie Priest
Published by Macmillan on September 28th 2010
Genres: Alternative History, Fiction, General, Science Fiction, Steampunk
Pages: 400
Source: library
Goodreads
five-stars

Nurse Mercy Lynch is elbows deep in bloody laundry at a war hospital in Richmond, Virginia, when Clara Barton comes bearing bad news: Mercy's husband has died in a POW camp. On top of that, a telegram from the west coast declares that her estranged father is gravely injured, and he wishes to see her. Mercy sets out toward the Mississippi River. Once there, she'll catch a train over the Rockies and--if the telegram can be believed--be greeted in Washington Territory by the sheriff, who will take her to see her father in Seattle.Reaching the Mississippi is a harrowing adventure by dirigible and rail through war-torn border states. When Mercy finally arrives in St. Louis, the only Tacoma-bound train is pulled by a terrifying Union-operated steam engine called the Dreadnought. Reluctantly, Mercy buys a ticket and climbs aboard.What ought to be a quiet trip turns deadly when the train is beset by bushwhackers, then vigorously attacked by a band of Rebel soldiers. The train is moving away from battle lines into the vast, unincorporated west, so Mercy can't imagine why they're so interested. Perhaps the mysterious cargo secreted in the second and last train cars has something to do with it?Mercy is just a frustrated nurse who wants to see her father before he dies. But she'll have to survive both Union intrigue and Confederate opposition if she wants to make it off the Dreadnought alive.

dn

After reading Boneshaker I knew I had to read the rest of the Clockwork Century series. Don’t let the fact that they are part of a series fool you all three books can act as a standalone so you do not need to read all of the books to understand what happens in the next book.

Dreadnought takes place during the Civil War. Mercy worked in VA at a Rebel hospital when she receives two devastating pieces of news. First that her husband who was fighting on the Union side was killed. Second is that her father who lived in Seattle and is dying wanted to see her. So she sets off on the journey.

The journey should be easy right? Go south then go west. But it is anything but. Things start to go wrong from the get go. First her dirigible crashes then it is one thing after another. She finally reaches St Louis and manages to catch a train the Dreadnought west. The Dreadnaught is a Union train so she keeps her southern sympathies hid. They say that the Dreadnought is on a purely civilian mission but as things start happening it becomes clear that is not the case. Mercy but figure out what the real purpose of the train is before they are all killed.

I have to be honest I loved this book. I think I may have found a new favorite genre. There were some elements that were the same as boneshaker but you did not have to read boneshaker to follow this book. There were not as many zombies and such in this book as there was in Boneshaker. I felt that the reader felt there was more danger in boneshaker than there were in Dreadnought.

The author weaves the alternate history parts together seamlessly into the story so that you were not jarred every time something out of the ordinary happened. It all had a nice flow to it.

While I might not be a die hard feminist I do like a story that has a strong female character. Mercy in Dreadnought is a very strong character, She shows times and time again that she can take control and have people respect her for it. No matter the situation she does not wait for a man to come rescue her but rather does her own rescuing. I think character such as these are important in literate as they show that a woman can be capable of taking care of herself and others.

I look forward to reading more of this authors books.

five-stars

Review: Boneshaker

Posted March 29, 2011 by Hillary in Book Reviews, steampunk / 0 Comments

bone shaker

I normally don’t take a week reading a book but this one was so good I just had to savor it. I think I found another favorite for books I have read this year.

The story starts with the boy Zeke and his mother Briar living in the outskirts of Seattle. Years before his father had run a machine called the Boneshaker through downtown Seattle. Originally the boneshaker was for mining gold under the frozen ice of the Klondike. However when it was run through downtown Seattle it caused a huge rift and the blight gas erupted. This gas burned anyone who came into contact with it. It also caused some people to turn into rotters. Zombies in other words. When Zeke goes into the walled off city to find the truth about his father who disappeared during the escape from the blight,  there is an earthquake that blocks the entrance and exit tunnels so his mother goes in by dirigible to try and find and save him.

At the start of the year I had told myself I was going to try new genres of books. I tend to stick with literary fiction with a side helping of self help. I felt the need to broaden my horizons. This book was my first foray into Steampunk. And what a delightful trip it was! I am now going to explore the genre farther. So if you have any suggestion feel free to leave them in the comments.

Back to the Boneshaker. This was a plot and character driven book. Things happen quickly while also giving you necessary background information. I felt that I really cared about the characters in the book and actually fantasized meeting them in real life!.Even the secondary characters come to life.

The plot was believable. Ok, it required you to forget about when actual events happened and to suspend actual history but reading it you felt that it COULD happen. That I feel is really important in this kind of novel. This shows that the world building was excellent. You had such a complete picture that you felt you could really “step” into that world and feel what the characters were feeling.

The plot was really fast. There were no dragging in this book. Things happened one after the other. I was glad because I for one find that as I get older my attention span for long explanations that go on for pages is getting shorter. I could blame twitter and facebook but oh well.

Over all this book had excellent writing, and an excellent story. I would recommend this book to all who like steampunk.

five-stars