I cannot believe April is over. It was definitely my most eventful month of 2022 with some minor changes to my life as well. I completely deleted most of my social media, and I also got to do a lot more with friends in the city, in addition to seeing my family.


I’m a children’s librarian, so I read books for kids and for grown-ups. This month, I read 1 picture/early reader book and 7 “big” books, including audiobooks, adult novels, and chapter books for children. My average rating this month was 3.9 stars.

Book LoversBook Lovers by Emily Henry
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I loved this book so much and cried on the desk a number of times while reading it. (Thankfully the part that made me all out sob was read at home.) I was sucked in from the first page. Nora is a great character, and her relationship with Libby was done so well. I don’t have any siblings and still felt that sisterly love to my bone, it was that well written. I loved how Charlie loved Nora for who she was, and how through her relationship with him and Libby’s actions she was able to live for herself by the end of the book and still get her happily ever after. Also VERY here for 30-something love stories where the communication is ON POINT and the representation of not wanting kids. (Marriage and children epilogues always bother me, LOL.) Finally, while most of the book doesn’t take place in NYC, Nora’s thoughts on it throughout the book are truly a love letter to the city (or at least Manhattan and Brooklyn lol).

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@daily.manifestationx Preorder Book Lovers – it is honestly so so good. #booktok #romancebooks #romancebooktok #emilyhenry ♬ original sound – Marissa

Return of the Duke (Once Upon a Dukedom, #3)Return of the Duke by Lorraine Heath
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Not my favorite in the series but Heath killed it again.

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@daily.manifestationx I love Lorraine Heath for a spicy historical romance 😍 #booktok #romancebooks #romancebooktok ♬ original sound – Marissa

How the Wallflower was Won (Last Chance Scoundrels, #2)How the Wallflower was Won by Eva Leigh
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I loved this. There were times where the lack of communication between Finn and Tabitha frustrated me, but overall I just was so pleased – by the steaminess, by the cameos from Leigh’s other characters, by the representation of a hero with a learning disability, with the discussion of how emotional abuse/trauma impacts people. I’m so excited for Book 3 in the series and can’t wait to read the novels by this author I haven’t visited yet. Each and every one is a joy to read. I love that there is always a message that the person you love sees you for who you are & that people with privilege have a responsibility to empower others, and displays of male friendship that defy toxic masculinity.

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@daily.manifestationx Loving this series! Book 1 is available – The Good Girl’s Guide to Rakes. #romancebooks #romancebooktok #booktok ♬ original sound – Marissa

A Duke for Diana (Designing Debutantes, #1)A Duke for Diana by Sabrina Jeffries
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I almost DNF’ed this one at 85%. If I make it past 50% I always finish a book and let me tell you… Geoffrey and Diana, both of whom I think are the most annoying people in the world, get into an argument that is pages on pages of *just* dialogue at the 85 % mark. He’s a judgmental jerk and she’s a total “shrew”. I found some of the foreplay/kissing scenes to be well done only to get to a love scene that was entirely clinical. I finished it since I had less than an hour left and had already dedicated so much time to begin with, but… torturous.

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@daily.manifestationx Viscerally hated this one but something kept me going enough to finish. #romancebooks #romancebooktok #booktok ♬ original sound – Marissa

Would You RatherWould You Rather by Allison Ashley
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is sweet and a little corny. A solid friends-to-lovers marriage of convenience. Mia and Noah have been best friends since childhood. They’ve had feelings for one another at least since college, but never acted on them. They almost did, but then a bunch of events unfolded that caused them to claim they were “just friends” – Noah’s brother died in a car accident he blames himself for and Mia received a diagnosis with a kidney disease in the same week. Now, Mia and Noah are coworkers. Mia has received the opportunity to go back to college to earn a degree she is passionate about, but she needs her full time job for insurance. Noah offers to marry her so she can be on his policy. She agrees, and old feelings that never went away get brought up when the two share a house together so coworkers don’t suspect that they’re committing fraud. (Though aside from the one blackmailing coworker, I don’t see why anyone would care. If you need to marry for insurance coverage, I don’t blame you.) Mia and Noah both have some personal issues to work through to make their marriage work and they help one another through them until they see that what they really need to do is give one another a little space to fully grow. (There’s still a HEA! They just acknowledge the codependency.) Didn’t love it, but I liked it.

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Animals in SpringAnimals in Spring by Kathryn Clay
My rating: 4 of 5 stars


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Reminders of HimReminders of Him by Colleen Hoover
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

How does this woman do it? Heartbreaking, but with a happy ending.

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To Catch a Raven (Women Who Dare, #3)To Catch a Raven by Beverly Jenkins
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I devoured this one. Raven and Braxton are blackmailed into faking a marriage in order to disguise themselves as servants in Charlotte in order to find a stolen copy of the Declaration of Independence. After Raven’s little cousin, gifted with sight, predicts a marriage between the two, the attraction between them (VERY reluctant on Raven’s part) inevitably comes to a head. There’s also a TINY bit of class warfare here. Raven grew up poor and struggles to read and worries about what a connection between them would look like for wealthy, highly educated Braxton.

I have never read Beverley Jenkins before (shocking, I know), and even though this was the final book in a trilogy it was super easy to follow. There are tons of cameos from what I can tell are characters from her other novels that, with the context provided, were easy for me to follow as a new reader. I’m sure those Easter eggs will be popular with her fans. The villain in this was pretty dastardly, the sort of person who thinks she’s doing good but with the wrong motivation all while stepping on others to reach her goals. It was fun to watch her get her just desserts a few times across the novel in a way reminiscent of “cheesy” 80’s romances.

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A Peek Into My Planner

I’ve been trying to fill out my planner each day to keep myself organized and to use the plethora of planner supplies and stickers I possess. (I use The Happy Planner.) I started a brand new planner (well, two of them, actually) in January.  Here are the spreads I shared in April.

I’ve been keeping track of my moods to keep an eye on my depression and anxiety. In 2022, I also began habit tracking various aspects of my life, though I got overwhelmed with the process in February and have scaled back quite a bit, but on the blog I’ll just continue to share moods:

  • Good – 9 days
  • Happy – 4 days
  • Great – 3 days
  • Okay – 3 days
  • Emotional – 2 days
  • Productive – 2 days
  • Creative – 1 day
  • Hopeful – 1 day
  • Lazy – 1 day
  • Relaxed – 1 day
  • Sick – 1 day
  • Thankful – 1 day
  • Tired – 1 day

I have been posting almost every day about my witchier interests on TikTok and also just having fun with it. I’m also sharing some #booktok posts there and just updates about my life in NYC.

@daily.manifestationx The true “keep it to yourself” and “keep TO yourself card. #thehermit #hermittarot #tarot #tarotreader ♬ original sound – lounginwithtony

I also watched Bridgerton Season 2, The Beguiled, and Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore.

Looking Ahead: May

I’m hoping for some major changes in my life in the upcoming month and actively working towards these goals!