Birthdays & AP Qualifiers, Perhaps Not the Best Combination - Quartz Gazette January & February 2017

Monday, March 6, 2017
Quartz Gazette January & February

February was that month, the one where I get older in the eyes of society thanks to the Gregorian calendar (jeesh self... I'm only 15, I shouldn't be this cynical already). I didn't pay my birthday that much mind this year (well aside from the mini Cassidy-mandatory freak-out session), mainly because the crazy-scary AP Human Geo qualifier I had the next day.

I wouldn't call it the hardest test I've ever taken...

(that honor goes to the SAT, no questions asked), but it's certainly up there. All the questions were multiple choice (thank god), but the multiple choice where they give you three right answers and you have to pick the best one (you know, everyone's favorite).

I was so stressed out during the entire thing, and was, of course, sorely regretting not studying more.

And that wasn't even the real test, only the qualifier, which determines whether the district pays for your test or not. My teacher has already assured us that the qualifier was much easier than the actual test *sweats at the thought*. In the end I qualified, but man was I a mess when we were getting told our scores, thought I was gonna throw-up.

One last very exciting thing happened in the last two months, I purchased a custom domain!!!

I'd been meaning to buy one for a really long time, and it became one of those things where you always mean to do it, but at the same time, it never feels like it'll actually happen cause it never does (catch my drift?). After connecting the domain with Quartzfeather, I spent a whole hour tussling with Disqus and Bloglovin trying to transfer all my comments and followers over (why can't Disqus's Blogger sync just work properly???), in the end, I spent less time actually buying the domain (which took like 30 seconds) than I did messing with 3rd-party stuff.

Books Read in January & February

(click on the titles to read the complete reviews)

Covers of the Books Read in January and February

Front Lines // First book of 2017 YAY! Anyways I quite enjoyed Front Lines, it was an interest look into World War II. I haven't looked much into either world war, even though I am a massive history nerd, mostly due to my dislike of wars, so I can't say for sure [...]

Extraordinary Means // I don't know how to feel about this book... On one hand I really loved the story, it just felt so genuine, and so so real. Lane was pretty relatable, especially with his drive to get into a good university. Overall I'd say he was [...]

Pride and Prejudice // I have been, for quite awhile, meaning to read a novel by Jane Austen, and as I have heard so terribly much about Mr. Darcy, I was very much inclined to pick up Pride and Prejudice first. I am pleased to say that this novel has in [...]

The Diabolic // (I was too lazy to write out a review, so enjoy this list...) Thoughts: swoony romance, amazing, well-rounded characters, some great clever plot twists (couldn't predict them all), an amazing setting and world, beautiful writing, was a bit gory [...]

The Best We Could Do // Told in a gorgeous and heartfelt way, The Best We Could Do is a timely story about the hardships refugees face, and how the effects of war can last generations. As the novel delves into her parents' backgrounds, we also get to see [...]

Covers of the Books Read in January and February

Blood for Blood // It's entirely possible that this judgment is a result of overly fond memories, and the fact that I've simply gotten picker since reading the first book, but, in my opinion, Blood for Blood wasn't quite as good as Wolf by Wolf. The story drags [...]

Queens of Geek // (Preview) First things first, let's talk about the glorious amount of diversity Queens of Geek has. Charlie is Chinese-Australian (when it was first mentioned I literally squealed. Finding characters who share my cultural heritage is [...]

Avatar: The Last Airbender // It's awful good to see some old faces again, now just to wait for Zuko to show up.... This issue delves further into the traditional culture vs. modernization conflict that was established in the first installment. It's an [...]

Wires and Nerve: Volume 1 // (Preview) I should've been writing an essay for English, but instead I decided to wisely spend my time reading Wires and Nerve. I told myself I'd only read a page or two, but that quickly became the entire book. I just [...]

By Your Side // I had some concerns about By Your Side, mainly because of the many not so positive reviews that came flooding in, but it turns out there was nothing to worry about, I loved this one. I still have yet to meet a Kasie West book I don't adore to [...]

Shows & Movies Watched in January & February

(click on the titles to read the complete reviews or see the trailers)

Shows Watched in January and February

Voltron: Legendary Defender (Season #2) // All 13 episodes of Voltron: Legendary Defender Season 2, were released simultaneously, as is the practice with all Netflix originals, this, of course, resulted in copious binging on my part. I watched all 5 [...]

Dragons: Race to the Edge (Season #4) // It was so great to see the gang again, the twins, as usual, were comedy gold, Viggo and Hiccup continued to duke it out, brain cell vs. brain cell, and of course, we got new dragons! All in all a great season, especially since (view spoiler)we got so much damn Hiccstrid, I mean it was about time!!! In relatively unrelated news, How to Train Your Dragon 3's release date recently got moved back one year, from 2018 to 2019 *pouts*.

Steven Universe (Season #4) // I hate to say it, but the most recent Steven Universe episode (at the time of me writing this) wasn't that great *cough* Rocknaldo *cough*. Ronaldo has never been my favorite character, and this episode did nothing to help my sentiments, in fact, it only further strengthened my dislike. Though, the rest of the episodes were fantastic; The Zoo further expanded the world of Steven Universe, always a positive, and Storm the Room broke everyone's heart into a million tiny pieces.

Star vs. the Forces of Evil (Season #2) // The second season of Star vs. got off to a bit of a rocky start, but it eventually began picking up steam, and the finale... that finale was certainly something. (view spoiler)I still can't believe that Star actually confessed to Marco, it was such a surprise! I don't have any strong feelings about the SVTFOE ships though, so I don't really care what the endgame is, but I'm eager to see how this plotline will unfold. Also TOFFEE, freaking Toffee is back and ready to claim his finger.... Speaking of him, Moon was so kick-ass this season, my love for her only grows. I can't wait for Season 3, SVTFOE is going somewhere great, I just know it....

Best Quotes from January & February

(some random quotes that I've taken a liking to)

  • This Above All And I think about the nature of censorship, of being told which way of thinking or being is acceptable and which way is not. And how sweeping something (say, gay students) under the rug or pretending they don’t exist won’t make it go away.
  • Wires and Nerve: Volume 1 Forgive me, Your Majesty. I'll attempt to enliven my temperament.
  • My Lady Jane After all, G knew from Edward’s pre-wedding talk, the one that went something like, “Hurt my cousin and I’ll kill you, even if I’m dead,” that Edward loved Jane, and maybe in more than a cousin kind of way.
  • Queens of Geek "If he messes with your head, I’ll mess with his face."
  • Voltron: Legendary Defender (Season #2) "It takes more than a glowing alien wound, a fall from the upper atmosphere, and crashing into a hard pan surface, at what I'm guessing is about 25 meters per second squared, to get rid of me."

Bookstagrams of January & February

(photos link to my instagram: @quartzfeathers)

Bookstagram Photos from January and February 2017

Words Discovered in January & February

(all the fantastically long & whimsically obscure words I've found)

  • Bellicose adjective; demonstrating aggression and willingness to fight.
  • Frisson noun; a sudden strong feeling of excitement or fear; a thrill.
  • Polysemy noun; the coexistence of many possible meanings for a word or phrase.
  • Homonymy noun; the relation between words with identical forms but different meanings.
  • Sessile adjective; (of an organism, e.g., a barnacle) fixed in one place; immobile.

Interesting Links from Around the Web

(posts & videos I'd like to share with y'all)

  • TED-Ed Since the Chinese Lunar New Year was in February, here's a little video about the the myth behind the Chinese Zodiacs.
  • Goodreads This is not a drill, I repeat this is not a drill, Goodreads finally introduced a function that let's you record rereads! *cheers*
  • Everything, Everything The trailer for the Everything, Everything movie was released, and it's okay. I'm not all to interested in seeing the film honestly, though, I'm rather disappointed that the mother isn't Asian like she is in the book.
  • Teen Blogger Awards If you might be so inclined, I would be absolutely delighted if you dropped me a little nomination over at the Teen Blogger Awards... #selfpromo.... *laughs nervously in the background*

Well, that's a wrap on my week late Jan-Feb recap... How has 2017 treated you so far?