Update: Life and Books (4/22/18)


Hello, my fellow book peeps! I’ve been more worn out than usual because I had blood drawn the other week and I also spent a few hours one day (or maybe two?) clearing stuff out of a room, so I haven’t been very productive with blogging or reading or creative stuff lately.

As for the headaches, I’m getting really frustrated. I’m now thinking maybe it’s an herb/spice because those can have different effects on your body, like lowering blood pressure/sugar, having a diuretic effect, etc. I’m fairly certain I have low blood volume, which means I already struggle with low blood pressure, dehydration, and other things related to that, so maybe I’m extra sensitive to such effects? But it could be that I’m able to eat a small amount of certain spices, just not too much, which would be even harder to figure out. There’s also the fact that I don’t feel bad immediately after eating a food—sometimes it takes a week to build up. There are also other factors, like how I’ve been around dust lately, and maybe that’s the cause of last week’s headaches. So figuring this out just seems impossible :-/

Ugh. Ok, that’s enough negativity. Let’s just move on to the rest of the post! I do have some funny stuff to share πŸ˜‰

Blog/Bookish Updates:

Nothing this time! Unless you count my excitement over some bookmail that’s on its way but hasn’t arrived yet.


Books I Received for Review:

Space Unicorn Blues by T.J. Berry

4/15/18: Space Unicorn Blues is from NetGalley.

4/22/18: Nothing!


Books I Finished:

Hell Divers III: Deliverance by Nicholas Sansbury Smith
The Reign of the Departed by Greg Keyes
Bloom by Desdemona Wren
The Midnight Gardener by R. G. Thomas
Sex Criminals Vol. 4 by Matt Fraction & Chip Zdarsky
This Monstrous Thing by Mackenzi Lee

4/15/18: Deliverance was amazing and gave me so many feels. Reign of the Departed was really good as well. Bloom was a quick, sweet f/f read about a nymph love interest! The Midnight Gardener was an ADORABLE m/m read about a garden gnome love interest! I am crushing my goal to read about uncommon paranormals this year!

4/22/18: I think I might be done with the Sex Criminals series. It’s not bad, it’s just taken a turn I wasn’t expecting and hasn’t really been fun for me since the first or second volume. This Monstrous Thing was slow-paced but still good. I’ve been in a reading slump lately though in that I’m really excited for so many books… but I just haven’t felt like reading at all :-/


What I’m Loving:

This week, what I’m loving is…

A Very Potter Musical

If you’re a Harry Potter fan and you haven’t watched this (the whole thing is on YouTube), you really should. It’s hilarious! Between Draco rolling around the floor and hot, shirtless Voldemort tap dancing… there’s just so much to love lol. Also, where is all the Voldemort-Quirrel fanfic?? #TeamQuirrelmort πŸ˜›


My Sims (Again)

I thought I had seen it all when one of my sims set his drink down on top of the urinal to pee and then picked it back up to keep drinking.

Then I thought I had seen it all when my sims were watching a show at the park, and the performer threw up on stage in the middle of her act and just kept going.

Then I really thought I had seen it all when one of my sims was working out at the gym and some woman wearing a hotdog suit came in and stood there laughing maniacally.

Then I really, really thought I had seen it all when I found a UFO parked in a parking space at the grocery store.

Then I really, really, really thought I had seen it all when one of my mods removed the fighting dust cloud, and I watched one of my sims put a burglar in a headlock and get into a slap fight.

(Seriously, what even is this game?)

But this. This is peak Sims 3. I now truly believe I have seen it all. Because it doesn’t get any better than having one of your sims take his guinea pig out clubbing with him.

Matthew was playing with the guinea pig, and I told him to put Jellybean back in the cage and then told my household to go to the club. I figured Matthew would put Jellybean away and then go, but nope, he just brought Jellybean with him. Jellybean had a wild night ?


In Case You Missed It:

– I reviewed Unbury Carol by Josh Malerman, a unique weird western.
– I talked about why I rarely give 1-star ratings to books.
– I reviewed Lonely Shore by Jenn Burke & Kelly Jensen, an emotional M/M space opera.

– I shared book covers featuring ships.
– I reviewed The Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling, a play I have some mixed feelings about.
– I shared 5 more of the strangest reviews I’ve written.
– I reviewed Inheritance by Lissa Kasey, a M/M urban fantasy with mental illness rep.


The Sunday Post Link-Up:

Once again, I’m linking up to The Sunday Post at Caffeinated Book Reviewer πŸ™‚


Talk to me!

Have you found any good books lately?
Have you seen A Very Potter Musical?


Your Thoughts


87 thoughts on “Update: Life and Books (4/22/18)

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  1. Luna & Saturn

    Oh no, that must be so tiring – we hope you find the cause of your headaches very soon. Perhaps you could enlist the help of a doctor or nutritionist? In the meanwhile, be sure to take care of yourself, and we’re wishing that the headaches go away soon <3 Yeah, Sims can get very, very crazy. Lol, we've never heard of a Sim character taking a guinea pig clubbing with him, but it is the Sims afterall.

    ~ Luna & Saturn @ Pendragons

  2. Greg

    I feel like Space Unicorn Blues I need to know more and will be off to Goodreads to check it out. You ARE killing it w/ the paranormals! A nymph love interest? And a garden gnome?? Wow.

    Okay I need to know how these Sims operate. Like how even do you get a woman in a hot dog suit? they must have written just multitudes of random/ crazy events and they can just turn up anywhere? Or… chilling to think of- the GAME does it. Without the help of, you know, programming. Cause what other explanation is there? I think… a Welcome to Night Vale Sims would be the best?

    Jellybean? Cute.

    1. Kristen Burns

      I’m super excited for Space Unicorn Blues, you should def check it out! And right? A nymph and a garden gnome!

      Hahaha. I think the hotdog suits came with the “Seasons” expansion pack because sims can have costume parties. But this woman just randomly showed up at the gym wearing it, didn’t work out, just stood there and started laughing maniacally. The glitches and things that happen by accident (like my sim bringing his guinea pig clubbing just because he didn’t put him back in the cage before leaving) are the best sometimes lol.

      Jellybean says thank you πŸ˜›

  3. Michelle Gilmore

    The Sims are amazing! I was playing a few weeks ago when I found this guy dancing and playing in trash, and then a day later when I held a party he showed up as the cook. My Sims seems to love placing her plates in the most random places. She’ll pass the sink and place it on the floor behind something and then complain because the room gets dirty. *rolls eyes*

    I hope you have an awesome week!

    1. Kristen Burns

      I love The Sims 3 so much lol. Oh gosh, hahaha. The guy playing in the trash is not who I want making my food! Sims do the strangest things sometimes.

      Thanks, you too!

  4. Kathy

    I’ve been dealing with a bunch of immune health issues lately so I can empathize! *hugs* . Most of my recent reads have been on the heavy side and The Midnight Gardener and Bloom sound like fun romances I definitely need to check out! And I laughed so hard at that screenshot of the sim carrying the guinea pig! XD

    1. Kristen Burns

      Ah, yes, I am also a spoonie (if that’s what you meant?), so *extra hugs*! Those two books are perfect if you want some light, fun stuff! Bloom is a little bittersweet (it pretty tells you how it ends in the blurb) but not heavy. I still can’t stop laughing at the guinea pig clubbing, haha.

  5. Nicci @ Sunny Buzzy Books

    I’ve never played Sims because it’s the type of game I know I’d love and become slightly obsessed with and I have the fear it’d take over my life, lol. The taking the guinea pig to the club story further reinforced this fear!

  6. Camilla @Reader in the Attic

    Whatever the problem’s nature is, take care.
    The opnly book on my list, of the I want to read tpe, is Lee’s books. But I never heard of the other and some has some amazing covers, so… definitely I’m gonna check them out,.

    The Sim are one of my favorite game. I’ve a bunch of expansions from The Sim 3 but I’m probably going to try out Sim 4. MY new computer graphicallow me and I kind love the new graphic for the characters

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thank you <3

      I love TS3. I have TS4 but only bothered to buy one expansion because I just don't like it as much and don't want to spend the money. I hope you enjoy it if you try it though! If you like the new graphics then you'll prob like it more than me since that's one of the things I dislike about it.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thanks, I do think dehydration is an issue. Unfortunately my body doesn’t absorb water properly, and I think a certain food is making it worse, so I’m trying to pinpoint the food :-/

  7. Vee Ramage

    I don’t know your past history and I’m no doctor BUT, do you drink anything with artfical sweeteners like aspartame? My partner and my gran gets the worst migraines from them.

    Also that guinea pig is the greatest thing ever, I really need to start playing The Sims again. I’ve never tried 3!

    Vee @ Under The Mountain

  8. Sam@WLABB

    I need to know about Space Unicorns. Now, I want a space unicorn. I will eagerly await your thoughts on that one.

    I hope you are able to figure out what is making you unwell. That has to be extremely frustrating.

  9. Samantha

    Man, every time you mention the Sims it makes me want to play again! Hilarious!! Hopefully you figure out your headaches. I had a terrible migraine this week. I think it was allergies though because the tree pollen here is high.

  10. Tammy @ Books, Bones & Buffy

    I almost request Space Unicorn Blues, but I haven’t really enjoyed the last couple of Angry Robot titles so I’m hesitating. I hope you love it! And Sims sounds crazy! I didn’t know they do their own random stuff?

    1. Kristen Burns

      I was actually kinda surprised not to see it in your haul post, it seems like a book you’d be interested in! But I can understand the hesitancy. There are some pubs I’m hesitant about for that same reason. Oh yeah, the sims do their own things if you let them, and then the weird and accidental stuff is sometimes the best, haha.

  11. Lola

    I hate headaches, they are the worst, so that sounds really annoying you’re still struggling with headaches. And it sounds like such a pain to figure out what’s causing them as so many possible things that contribute or cause it. It would be nice if there was just a test that could tell you for sure. I hope you can figure out what’s causing them as it’s so helpful to now what’s causing them as then you can actually do something about them.

    I also saw Space Unicorn Blues and was wondering whether to request it. It sure sounds original. I am looking forward to hear what you think of it!

    Looks like you had some good reads these past few weeks. the Midnight Garden sounds interesting and you’re really doing well with your uncommon paranormal creatures goal this year!

    Tat’s Sims picture is priceless how he stands there so casual with his guinea pig while out clubbing! I mean I can still sorta imagine taking your pet for a walk outside or something, but take it with you to the club seems so random. There sure are a lot of funny/ weird things that happen in that game.

    I hope you’ll have a great week!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Headaches do suck :-/ Unfortunately if it’s just a sensitivity to the effects of an herb or something, that won’t show up on tests, but it sure would make things easier if it did.

      It sounds so awesome!

      Midnight Gardener was so cute! I’m really happy to finally be reading more books about uncommon paranormals πŸ™‚

      I didn’t realize sims could even walk around or travel while holding a small pet, but apparently they can, haha. The weird stuff that happens is the best!

      Thanks, you too πŸ™‚

  12. Sophie

    That really sucks for your headaches! But truly it’s trying to find an evasive cause (I haven’t found for my daughter’s yet). And yes I saw your post about why you don’t rate 1 star often. It was a good one!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Yeah, sometimes the cause of things is so hard to figure out cuz there are just so many possible factors. Hopefully both I and your daughter can figure it out soon. Thank you!

  13. Danielle

    I am sorry to read about the headaches! I know that pain too well and just how disrupting and debilitating they can be. I am hoping you have a better, more restful and creative week ahead!

  14. Tina

    I’ve never played Sims before but I love seeing everyone’s snippets of their Sims. (Is that even the right term? But hopefully you know what I mean!).

    I hope you are able to figure out what is causing your headaches. I’ve had migraines almost all my life and I’m still trying to figure out what exactly triggers them to avoid. Hang in there.

    1. Kristen Burns

      I do get what you mean! I can only imagine how weird the game must seem to people who’ve never played it lol.

      Thank you <3 Sorry to hear about your migraines too :-/

  15. JJ @ This Dark Material

    Confession: I have procrastinated watching the Potter Musical for YEARS. I have no excuse, just laziness. But NO MORE. This week I’m going to watch it and finally hop on the bandwagon!

    And I’m so sorry to hear that the headaches are continuing to be an issue. I hope that you can discern a cause soon, or at the very least find ways to alleviate the symptoms while you search for an answer. Sending lots of good thoughts your way πŸ™‚

    1. Kristen Burns

      I didn’t even realize it existed until recently. You have to watch it though! Good news is that it’s split up into a bunch of shorter videos, so you can easily watch a little at a time if you want.

      Thank you, I’m really hoping I can figure the cause out soon!

  16. Evelina

    Space Unicorn Blues sounds wild πŸ˜€ and the Jellybean adventure is something I can still not stop laughing about πŸ˜€ great story πŸ˜€

  17. Aimee (Aimee, Always)

    I hope your headaches get better, Kristen! Take care of yourself. πŸ™

    I didn’t expect This Monstrous Thing to be slow–I still need to read that one, and Lee’s other book, A Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue. Aaaand I’m totally up for watching A Very Potter Musical once exams are over!!!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thank you <3

      Well be warned, it is pretty slow, so make sure you're in the mood for that. But I enjoyed it! Ahhh you need to watch the musical, it's so funny!

  18. Pingback: The Reading Habits Tag! – Sophie's Corner

  19. Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

    Sorry for the issue with your headaches. I agree that food issues can be really hard to uncover because it’s not the type of situation where you always react. I have food allergies and sometimes I’ll eat something that’s normally fine, but that day it will really bother me. Ugh!

    I saw the guinea pig thing on Twitter and got a good laugh. Your Sims are constantly cracking me up!

  20. Bookworm Brandee

    I’m sorry to hear about your headaches lingering, Kristen. I suffer from migraines at least once a month and that’s plenty in the headache department. It stinks you can’t seem to figure out what’s causing them. Grrr! But on a brighter note, you read some good books! I’m curious about Bloom – because I like the cover. πŸ™‚ I was just thinking of recommending a book to you because there’s a character that’s disabled…she’s not the MC but…have you read the Penryn and the End of Days series? Anyway, I hope your week is fabulous and headache-free!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thank you <3 I don't think mine are migraines, just bad headaches, but I know migraines are terrible, I'm sorry you have to deal with them at all. But yes, good books are always a positive thing! Bloom does have a lovely cover! Thanks, I haven't read that series, but I've heard about it πŸ™‚ Same to you!

  21. Barb (boxermommyreads)

    Poor poor jellybean. Your SIMS game sounds truly awesome. I hope you get to the root of your headaches soon. I suffer from sinus headaches quite a bit and they are so miserable. It really is hard to do anything else when they hit.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Lol I thought about how in real life a guinea pig would prob be scared by all the noise and lights, but in the game, I imagine Jellybean had the time of his life partying it up πŸ˜‰ Thank you <3 I have a lot of sinus problems and get headaches from that too, so I feel your pain there <3

    1. Kristen Burns

      This was over two weeks, 2 were novellas, 1 was a graphic novel, and 2 of them were almost finished at the time of my last update, so it’s not nearly as impressive as it looks lol. I’m actually in a slump right now! Hot shirtless Voldemort was too funny!

  22. Daniela Ark

    ok even though I tried I HAD to read your first sentence about HD3 LOL

    And now I’m in that weird mode I get when I expect a book to be awesome! I’m afraid of reading it! LOL I haven’t read Dear Nation yet which was my other highly 2018 anticipated release besides HD3. SMH I’m such a weirdo!

    I have to check out The Midnight Gardener! Love that title and cover!

    I think it is funny the guinea pig ended up in the club πŸ™‚

    I hope you feel better soon so you can enjoy your blogging and reading again.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Lol JUST READ IT. The longer you put these books off, the more you build them up in your mind, so it’s better to just read them immediately!

      The Midnight Gardener is so adorable!

      I could not stop laughing at the guinea pig clubbing, haha.

      Thank you <3

  23. Sophie

    Hello Kristen!

    Hope that you will find out what is causing your headache and that it will get better soon. That is great to hear that you are liking most of the books that you’ve read recently. It is hilarious to read about your sims πŸ™‚
    I’ll have to check out the Harry Potter musical you linked to. I am re-reading HP this month and loving it very much.
    Also, I tagged you in the Reading Habits Tag: https://sophiexli.wordpress.com/2018/04/23/the-reading-habits-tag/


    1. Kristen Burns

      Thank you <3 I'm glad you find my sims entertaining too πŸ˜›

      I just reread the HP series a few weeks ago, so I've been in a total HP mood! The musical is great, I definitely recommend watching it!

      Thanks, I'll check out the tag now πŸ™‚

  24. Tanya @ Girl Plus Books

    Sorry to hear the headaches are still there. Pinpointing a cause can be frustrating because there are *so* many possibilities.
    I’ve heard good things about This Monstrous Thing. I might get to it eventually but I want to read The Gentleman’s Guide first.
    I’m not totally sure what the sims is (I’m guessing a game because I’m a genius like that) but I definitely got a laugh over the scenarios you shared. For some reason it’s the slap fight with the burglar that’s got me tickled.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thank you <3 Exactly, it makes it so difficult!

      I hope you enjoy both Mackenzi Lee books!

      Yes, it's a computer game! You create and control the little people and basically they just go about life, but you can do all sorts of things, and sometimes weird things happen lol.

  25. Becky @ A Fool's Ingenuity

    Sorry your health is still not great. It’s worse because you don’t know the cause so I hope you manage to get to the bottom of it soon. I’ve seen Space Unicorn Blues about and i admit I’m intrigued by the title alone, can’t wait to see your review.

  26. Wren

    haha the sims guinea pig thing is so adorable. I mean tbh I would bring my cat clubbing with me if it was safe….and if I went clubbing in the first place.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Lol I used to have a guinea pig, and now I’m imagining what it would be like to bring him clubbing, not that I go clubbing either,haha (although I did go like three whole times when I was in college). There should totally be clubs where you can bring pets! Lol

  27. Danya @ Fine Print

    I can’t imagine how frustrating your headaches must be, Kristen. I hope you figure out the cause soon!

    I hear you re: feeling drained about blogging and reading. I’ve been on an unofficial two-week hiatus and it’s been glorious, haha. I feel more excited about it now! Sex Criminals was a series I wanted to love, but just never got into it…maybe because the authors obviously know nothing about working in a library lmao. OMG A Very Potter Musical! Wow, what an awesome blast from the past. #Quirrelmort is definitely goals.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thank you <3 Glad you're feeling better after a hiatus! I know nothing about working in a library either, so I guess that issue went right over my head lol. #Quirrelmort is amazing, haha.

  28. Olivia Roach

    Ah, I’m sorry that things are getting really frustrating with health. I really don’t know what it could be… are you drinking 2L of water every day? If it is dehydration then making sure you drink that amount and get a full night’s sleep should help somewhat. Maybe worth giving a go? I’m also sorry that you aren’t enjoying the Sex Criminals series anymore. But hey, if it isn’t working for you then there are more books and graphic novels out there for you to enjoy πŸ™‚

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thank you <3 Yeah, it's a bummer Sex Criminals didn't continue working out for me, but there are too many books to keep reading one that I'm not enjoying!