Soulless: The Manga
by Gail Carriger

illustrated by REM
Yen Press

          The life of a spinster in Victorian London isn't an easy one on the best of days, but such a life becomes infinitely more complicated when said spinster is "soulless" - a preternatural bridging the gap between the natural and supernatural worlds. Miss Alexia Tarabotti has this unique distinction, and when she is assailed at a formal gathering by a rove vampire, an encounter that results in the death of the half-starved creature, her circumstances become exponentially more complicated indeed! Now caught up in an intrigue with life or death stakes, Alexia must rely on all her talents to outmatch the forces conspiring against her, but it may be the man who has caught her eye - Lord Conall Maccon - and their budding flirtation that truly drives her to her wit's end!


When I see posts that countdown to Halloween, or excited posts related to Halloween before Halloween, I roll my eyes. It's JUST Halloween, calm down! Once it's around the corner, I get caught up with the festive spirit; that's the thing with any holiday-they're infectious. When I used to watch TV, I loved the movie marathons because they got you into the mood. Here's a list of some of my favorite movies, and hopefully it gets you into festive spirits. 


Anne of Green Gables
by L.M. Montgomery
Puffin Classics | June 1908
       Everyone's favorite redhead, the spunky Anne Shirley, begins her adventures at Green Gables, a farm outside Avonlea, Prince Edward Island. When the freckled girl realizes that the elderly Cuthberts wanted to adopt a boy instead, she begins to try to win them and the reader over.


When I heard the doorbell in the evening, I thought it was going to be a neighbor complaining about something, so my dad and I didn't bother to answer the door, but we peeked to see who was there when my mother answered it, as you do. I was surprised and confused when she returned with three packages addressed to me. Books!? But I never ordered any... no one contacted me about winning a giveaway. It's free books, so... 


Taiyou No Ie (House of the Sun) by Taamo
Manga: 13 completed volumes
Run: May 2010 - January 2015

This series is an emotional roller-coaster that has you teary-eyed page one. As a little girl, Mao was always home alone because her estranged parents were working 24/7. Fortunately, her neighbors, the Nakamuras, had a loving household, who welcomed her with open arms. She becomes part of their family and a fixture in their lives: Hiro (the older brother,) Daiki (the middle brother,) and Hina (the youngest sister.) One day, tragedy hits, killing the Nakamura parents, leaving the three siblings orphaned. Since Hiro is unable to take care of his family, as he is underage, he is separated from his siblings, who will live with other relatives, and lives in their childhood home alone. During this time period, Mao's parents have a divorce; she decides to stay with her father so she can stay close to Mao. Throughout the years, Mao checks on Hiro, so he isn't lonely; but, her home situation is not that great either - her father is very cold and distant; she feels that she is unwanted by her step-family. Hiro, upon discovering this, invites Mao to live with him. Naturally, when you live in close quarters with someone, you develop feelings. Mao also gives Hiro the strength to bring his family back together. Since it's a Shoujo, Slice of Life manga, expect love triangles, friendship, heartbreak, and drama.


My tastes in books have changed drastically over the years. I used to read mostly Romance-driven plots because they were entertaining, and I was relatively new to the book community: I didn't know there were better books out. One of my book resolutions for 2018 was to reread old books on my shelf and get rid of some. The second book on the chopping block is Alice in Zombieland. I remember loving this series because I thought it had an original concept and action-a.k.a the male protagonist was cute... After partially rereading the book, I will be discarding the whole series. I don't understand why I liked it.

I have a short attention span, which is why I often have trouble reading for prolonged periods; I get bored and take many breaks in-between. I also respond better to visuals (I like art), so it doesn't come as a surprise that I enjoy manga and graphic novels. Lately, I've been reading more manga than actual books: I find random ones and continue ones I enjoy. Because my old post about manga was popular, I have more recommendations. (This list is all Shoujo with recent updates. It's ironic how I bemoan romance in novels, but don't mind it in manga.)


After watching a TED-Ed video about Virginia Woolf and reading Shakespeare's Sister in AP English, I decided to tackle Mrs. Dalloway. Going in, as one does with every revered Classic novel, I expected to love it and give it a round of applause when I finished; I applauded because I was finally done with it! Though I appreciate it stylistically, that's about the extent of my affections. I wasn't able to appreciate the nuances and commentary fully because I was bored, confused, and not ready for this text. I'm surprised that my "preparation" and research on Woolf did not help me.