Estelle: Shelve It (10/28/2012)

weekly feature focusing on the books we bought, borrowed, and received from publishers

Edit: Thanks to Jamie (Perpetual Page Turner) I just bought Blackberry Winter by Sarah Joi for my Nook. Only $2.99! (Amazon too!)

Guess what?

I bought absolutely no books since my last Shelve It. NONE. But I did buy a lot of shelves to put in our new apartment. So that sort of counts, right? (Also, an obscene amount of nail polish. Julep is amazing.)

Hope you all had a fabulous week! We are preparing for Hurricane Sandy + it looks like I won’t be going to work tomorrow. So this means an unexpected amount of time for reading has opened up. Oh, the small things. Anyone in the path of the storm, please stay safe!

I’m so excited for everything we have in the queue for this week. It’s our big ONE YEAR anniversary on Thursday if you can believe it!

In case you missed anything this week, here’s a quick round up of what happened on the blog:

+ Review: Dante’s Girl by Courtney Cole
+ Dear Teen Me: A Letter From Estelle
+ Dear Teen Me: A Letter From Magan
+ Review: Better than Chocolate by Sheila Roberts
+ Helping Books of Wonder in NYC 
+ Review: All You Never Wanted by Adele Griffin

A Books of Wonder update: since Tuesday over 35K has been raised! So amazing!

Thanks for stopping in + thank you so much to those of you who left us such supportive and wonderful comments after reading our Dear Teen Me letters. We really felt so spoiled and touched! Thank you thank you thank you!

So tell me, are you reading anything FABULOUS? I need to know!

Dear Teen Me: A Letter By Estelle

Today Magan & I are celebrating the upcoming release of Dear Teen Me, a collection of letters written by authors to their teen selves. It’s available from Zest Books on Halloween, October 31! ( Amazon | Goodreads )

Dear Teen Me,

Here are a few things you need to know: Katie Holmes married and divorced Tom Cruise. (It’s a long story.) James Van Der Beek is currently playing himself on a new TV show. (It’s hilarious.) Your man, Joshua Jackson, stars on a show you don’t watch (it’s not your thing) but looks positively stylish and handsome, even more so than he did as Pacey. And the one who continues to garner the most buzz due to her acting talents (and unfortunate death of her daughter’s dad) is Michelle Williams. She was even nominated for an Oscar.

Crazy and unexpected right?

Just when those Capeside kids were closing up shop, you were graduating high school. Off to a college near the beach, a place where none of your fellow graduates would attend. Your new campus was sprawling with space; you couldn’t wait to write near the beach. You wanted to be a journalist. You were dating the most beautiful boy you had ever seen (up until that point) who wrote you love notes and made you mixed CDs. Like any normal teenager, you fought with your mom quite a bit. You also had some pretty awesome friends at home you were going to miss dearly.

You’d never think that the beautiful boy would break your heart into a thousand or so pieces, time and time again. That you would become the crazy of your suite because his drama sucked the life out of you. Or despite your hefty tuition and that new “green” library they were planning to build, your school was in a crapload of debt and would be closing its doors after your sophomore year. Or maybe that some of your good friends would drift away (one would even pass away – a day you still think about all the time).

Okay, those are the bad things.

But, ya know, despite the fact that the boy kept hurting you, you kept trying. You’ll still get mad that you didn’t end things sooner. That you weren’t stronger. But it’s part of the reason you are who you are. You fight like mad. You don’t give up on people. Or things. Even when your school announced its impending doom, you stayed. You became the youngest editor-in-chief of the campus paper. You tried to raise morale. You and your friends teamed up to “save the school”. You even tried out for a show in the theater. Even though you’d rather hang out in the background, the actual theater became your refuge (that smell of burnt coffee!). You starred (yes, you read that right) in a student-directed full-length movie. Sure, the school felt like a ghost town, but you still worked hard to get the best grades and made the most of all its opportunities (while partaking in round 2 of the college search).

Your drive wasn’t the only thing that remained consistent. You had support pouring in from all angles – the three ladies you grew up with, your parents who might not always understand or approve of your choices but trusted you to make the right ones (so it’s okay to stand up to them when it’s important), and two science-y girls from college by the beach. It’s amazing to think how one little choice, one friendship, can change your course and enhance your life. People come and go, but like a wise pal told you recently, they’ll come back if they’re meant to. Trust me when I say… you are the luckiest girl in town.

If anything, you’ve learned that life has its own ideas and can turn the best laid plans into a disaster and a blessing at the same time. You graduated from school in the city. You reconnected with the last person you ever thought and he ended up being the person you married. A man who makes you feel smart and beautiful, who encourages you to be your silly self, who deals with your moods, who listens to you, and who loves to go to Disney as much as you do. (This is why rewriting history and not going to your first school is not an option!) Maybe at this time certain details aren’t perfect. They aren’t ideal. But, like always, you keep on trucking. You make mistakes! You keep on fighting to do what you need to do to find happiness and move into the right direction.

When you were 18 – hell, even when you were 13 — you thought you understood the meaning of “it was the end of everything simple, and the beginning of everything else,” the little saying on those season 1 Dawson’s Creek posters. Girl, you didn’t even know the half of it. And that’s okay. Because you are a happier, better dressed, super honest person who knows what she deserves and what she can accomplish because of all of that.

Hey, if you can dream it, you can do it.


P.S. If it’s possible, you love Disney even more than you did then. Also, your music of choice is country. Seriously.

weekly feature focusing on the books we bought, borrowed, and received from publishers

Estelle + Magan: Shelve It (10/21/2012)

weekly feature focusing on the books we bought, borrowed, and received from publishers

Happy Sunday, friends! We decided to do a joint “Shelve It” this week because someone was a little preoccupied with a move last weekend. Lots of fun books to look forward to for both of us!


Hi. Hi. Hi. Last week, I had a bunch of fun hanging out with Elena (Novel Sounds) and Alexa (Alexa Love Books). It was my first time meeting Elena, and I’m here to tell you the truth: she is super sweet in person yet has a terrible sense of direction. But a great taste in books and clothes. We met up last Sunday, shared a cupcake like we were on a date, and walked around to shop and find some dinner. After a stressful and emotional weekend (saying goodbye to a house is not easy…) it was nice to take a break and hang out with two girls who make me laugh and force me to buy books. FORCE ME. Okay, maybe they didn’t force but it’s hard not to get excited about books when you are hanging out with people who are so passionate about them.

Here are some pics from our adventures:

Rather Be Reading Blog meets Novel Sounds

So much fun! I hope Elena comes back to visit soon!

As far as buying books, the three of us visited the Strand and I went a little crazy:

Rather Be Reading Blog Shelve It 10/21/2012

Bunheads by Sophia Black (Goodreads)
Virtuosity by  Jessica Martinez (Goodreads) — I knew Magan was a big fan of these two so the price was right & I picked them up.
Such a Rush by Jennifer Echols (Goodreads) — a hardcover to add to my collection was a must!
Violet & Claire by Francesca Lia Block (Goodreads) — an oldie but goodie that I haven’t read in forever.

I also bought that cute Kate Spade Strand bag! It’s been great to bring to work!

Very excited about some recent packages I received in the mail!

Rather Be Reading Shelve It 10/21/2012

Thanks to Hachette for the copy of Winter White, the second book in the BELLES series by Jen Calonita. I recently read the first book and really liked it so I’m anxious to check out what these characters are up to. (Goodreads)

Where You Are by J.H. Trumble, comes to bookstores in January 2013. I have high expectations for this particular novel because I loved J.H.’s debut, Don’t Let Me Go. Thanks to Kensington Publishers for this paperback! (Goodreads)

Rather Be Reading Shelve It 10/21/2012

Ginger (GReads!) was awesome enough to lend me her copy of Live Through This by Mindi Scott. Ginger and I had been talking as she read it, and I was very intrigued. (Goodreads)

Magan sent me a copy of Dear Teen Me, a collection of authors’ letters to their teen selves. I can’t wait to get cracking on this one. (Goodreads)

Thanks ladies!


Hi, friends! Oh my goodness, it’s been an awesome weekend here on the homefront. We got a little bit of work done in our house yesterday. My husband and I have lived in our house for over a year and a half and I’ve been reallllllly slow about putting things up on the walls. I’m a DIY kind of girl (something E and I also majorly have in common — we love crafts and projects!) so I’ve been collecting things for the house. My latest project has involved me doing all of the mat cutting and framing myself for the art work I wanted to hang. The husband finally helped me hang these yesterday:

katie daisy prints and note cards hung on the wall

Most of the art work (the one on the top right is a large print, and the three square doily-looking ones were a note card set) is by Katie Daisy (Estelle and I LOVE her work!) and the other print is a gift from my sister-in-law.

But back to books…

The amazing Katie at Mundie Moms gifted me with the books above! Katie — you’re awesome! Thank you so, so much!

The Opposite of Hallelujah by Anna Jarzab (Goodreads)
34 Pieces of You by Carmen Rodrigues (Goodreads)
The Stone Girl by Alyssa B. Sheinmel (Goodreads)
The Blessed by  Tonya Hurley (Goodreads)

A few weeks ago was the Austin Teen Book Festival (YIPPIE!). I didn’t get to go for very long, but I did purchase one book!

Time Between Us by Tamara Ireland Stone (Goodreads) — it’s been a while since I read a time travel book (we did see Looper, the time travel movie with Joseph Gordon-Levitt, this weekend though!) so I can’t wait to read this one!

Sometimes I’m terribly bad at remembering to mention NetGalley books in vlogs because I don’t have the physical copy to show. Here’s what we received from publishers this week:








Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell (Goodreads) — we are kind of in love with the covers for this one. AND it sounds fabulous!
Uses for Boys by Erica Lorianne Scheidt (Goodreads) — I’ve heard this one is pretty deep and dark! Whoa .. cannot wait to read it!
Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor (Goodreads) — A very big thank you to Little, Brown for allowing me to read this! I spent some time re-reading the end of Daughter of Smoke and Bone today to freshen up!


on the blog.

A review of Good For You by Tammara Webber

A review of One Pink Line by Dina Silver

A review of Death & the Girl Next Door by Darynda Jones

A review of Meant to Be by Lauren Morrill


We hope you’ve had the best weekend! Enjoy the rest of your Sunday! Let us know what books you got this week!