Brontës and Bonnets: Worlds of Ink and Shadow Launch at Ben McNally Books

One More Page Book Blog Toronto Ontario

If you’ve been around my blog over the past few weeks, you’ll know that I absolutely adored Lena Coakley’s Worlds of Ink and Shadow. (Read my review here!) So, when I heard that there was going to be a book launch for it here in Toronto, I immediately marked it into my calendar. The launch was so beautiful that I thought I’d share a few pictures of the event with you here!

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My Week On Instagram #3

Word on the Street Book Club Toronto 2015

(Photo credit: Michele from Just a Lil’ Lost…)

This is when I sheepishly duck into the blog and say a “hey guys…”

You may have noticed that this blog has been quieter than usual this month. I’ve been under a little more stress than usual lately and that has meant that I’ve been spending less time reading and writing (which, if I think about it, makes me feel worse). Anyway, that’s all a roundabout way of saying I’m sorry for the silence! I actually have quite a few book reviews written and ready to go, so I’m looking forward to sharing them with you.

On to Instagram. I haven’t been posting as regularly as before (and, in fact, my first Insta this week was a repost from the lovely Michele) but I’m really excited about what I did post about! I couldn’t make it to the announcement event, but I’m proud to share that I’m going to be one of the book club leaders for this year’s The Word on the Street Book Club here in Toronto! I will be leading the discussion for The Man Who Saved Henry Morgan by Robert Hough. I’m so excited to start! Click here for more info on how to join the book club and here for the intro post with a little bio of me 😉 There are other titles involved as well, so definitely check them out!

I don’t normally post too many selfies on my Instagram, but I was happy to do so this week to spread my love for Judy Blume and In the Unlikely Event plus enter to win a button from Penguin Random House Canada! You can join in too by taking a selfie of you and the book and using the hashtag #IHeartJudyBlume. This contest comes at a perfect time because on Monday Judy will be in Toronto to talk about her book! As someone who grew up reading her books, I couldn’t be more excited. Stay tuned for my recap!

Overall, this has been an exciting but humbling week for me. I’ve learned that I have quite a ways to go before I can make all of my dreams a reality, but I also know that those things are worth working for, so there’s a bit of hope and excitement there too. I’m looking forward to the next few months, and I really hope to see you on the The Word on the Street Book Club blog discussing the book club picks!

How has your week been?

10 Reasons Why I’m Thankful For Blogging and the Bookish Community

Karen One More Page Blog

When I started One More Page less than 8 months ago, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. I mean, I knew it would entail a lot of reading and reviewing, but I had absolutely no clue how much it would, not to be too hyperbolic, change my life. I know it sounds crazy, but when I take an introspective moment and think about where I was last year compared to this year, I realize that book blogging has made a huge positive difference. Last year was difficult for a few reasons: I had just moved from Vancouver to Toronto and thus hardly knew anyone in this big city, I had just moved in with my boyfriend and that needed getting used to, and, to be honest, I had no idea how to work towards my passions even though I felt a strong urge to do something. So, as I gear up to celebrate Canadian thanksgiving this year, I thought I’d list 10 reasons why I’m thankful for blogging and the bookish community.

1. The amazing books I hear about on a daily basis.

I’m sure all book lovers will agree with me that our to-be-read piles can get pretty out of control. Well, let me tell you, book blogging and being more active in the online bookish community has definitely exposed me to A LOT of amazing books daily. I have to carefully pick and choose which ones to add to my to-read list or else it would be even crazier than it is now, but I’m thankful for the fact that I am constantly finding new books to love.

2. It has broadened my reading horizons.

The great thing about learning about so many new books every day is that some of them are books I never would have heard of otherwise. Better yet – some of these books are ones that I would never think to pick up had I not heard about them from trusted friends. Being in this community has given me a sense of adventure when it comes to reading again, and for that I’m thankful.

3. The community.

Who would I turn to when I need book recommendations if not for this wonderful, welcoming community? Whether I’m having a bad day and need someone to vent to or have just read an AMAZING book that I NEED to talk to someone about, you guys have always been there to listen. I’m so, so thankful for you!!

4. It has taught me not to be ashamed of what I like to read (aka taking the “guilty” out of “guilty pleasure”!)

When I was still in university and an English major, I would sometimes feel guilty admitting that I was REALLY excited for the new Shopaholic book or the new Meg Cabot novel. However, since joining the blogging/bookish community, I have finally found friends who understand what a hunk Michael Moscovitz is (Hi, Adriana!) and this has really made me come out of the “guilty” shell. So what if I occasionally love reading “chick lit” or young adult novels? That doesn’t make me better or worse than any other reader. Thank you, all, for finally setting me straight.

5. The wonderful friends I have met in real life.

As I mentioned before, I hardly knew anyone in the city besides my family members, boyfriend, and work friends after moving here last year. I’m so thankful for the bustling Toronto literary scene and for the wonderful bookish people that organize and go to those events! Thanks to these events, I’ve been able to meet some amazing people in real life and even though we don’t hang out all the time, it makes me so happy to see a familiar face from time to time. I want to make a special shout-out to Leah from Books Speak Volumes: I’m so thankful that you drove all the way to Toronto just to hang out!! Also thanks to CJ from ebookclassics for co-hosting the book blogger brunch with me! I can’t wait to do it all again. 🙂

One More Page kmn04books Summer Book Picks

 6. The authors.

Where would we all be without the amazing, inventive, and compassionate authors that write books for us to love every day? I’ve been so lucky to meet some wonderfully inspiring writers over the past year! Thank you all for writing books that have truly made me think, feel, and dream! Now if only I could get over that stutter I seem to develop when I’m near authors I love…

7. The opportunities.

There is no denying that book blogging has introduced me to things that I never would have been able to experience otherwise. Thank you to Penguin Canada for sending me my very first review book (the beautiful, heartfelt The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry), to Random House Canada for always being so supportive of me and my blog, to House of Anansi/Groundwood Books for understanding how cathartic it is to read books that make you cry, to the many other publishers and authors that have gotten in touch, and, most recently, the CBC for giving me my five minutes of fame on their website! 🙂

8. It’s really helped me feel at home in a big city like Toronto.

I know I’ve kind of touched on this earlier, but meeting bookish friends and attending literary events around the city has made me feel so much more comfortable here. I love that the bookish world is truly such a community, and such a friendly one at that! Book people are truly the best people. 🙂

9. It has pushed me to really love reading again after not reading for a year.

With the added exposure to so many great books, it would be difficult for me to NOT fall back in love with reading! I really believe that everyone is a reader. If you don’t think you like reading, it’s probably because you haven’t found the right book for you yet! I’m thankful for my reignited passion for reading.

10. It has confirmed my love for the bookish world and just how much I want my career path to be related to books.

Back when I was deciding whether to “take a risk” and become an English major, the main source of stress was the worry that nothing would come out of it career-wise. Well, three years have passed since I decided to dedicate all of my time and energy into literature and books and I really can’t say I regret it at all. My blogging journey has only reaffirmed how much I want to be, to quote Ariel, a part of this world. My goals are now clearer than ever and I am really, truly thankful. From the bottom of my heart.

I’m a little worried that I got too sappy there, but everything I’ve written here is true. I have so much love for what I do with One More Page and I am grateful for everyone that I’ve met and everything that I’ve learned in the past 8 months. Thank you thank you thank you. (I think I should also give a mini thank you to Sean, who doesn’t ever lose it when I keep getting more and more books…)

What are you thankful for this year, book-related or otherwise?

Announcement | Book Blogger Brunch!

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Hi everyone!

I’m extremely excited to announce that I am hosting a Book Blogger Brunch with C.J. from ebookclassics for anyone who can come! I’ve met so many great friends online and I would looove to meet you all in person! Keep reading for more information:

What: A book blogger brunch! Come join us for delicious food and book talk!

When: Saturday August 16th, 2014 at 10:00am – mark it on your calendars!

Where: The Hothouse Restaurant on 35 Church Street in Toronto

Who: If you’re reading this and are able to come to Toronto on August 16th, then you are invited! Like I mentioned above, I would love to meet you all in person, whether we’ve spoken online or not.

How: Just RSVP by commenting on this blog, tweeting me @karenfma, Facebook me at One More Page Reviews or send me an email at karenfenellama (at) gmail.com.

I hope you all can make it to this event; I think it’s going to be a great time! Don’t forget to RSVP by August 14th if you can make it! 🙂