Life Update: I’m Selling Books Apparently

Let’s go back in time a little bit to the end of February, when I ended my internship in a publishing house near Strasbourg, and moved back to my parents with one goal in mind: find a job, get money, and become a functional adult. Okay so that’s three goals but I feel like if the first one happens the other two follow.

Wait, we’re going back in time some more actually. Ever since high school I did not really know what to do with my life, except for the fact that I liked books, but that’s not much of a plan. Which is how I ended up studying humanities, and eventually did a Master in Comparative Literature.

At the end of the day, most of my friends from college knew they wanted to become professors, while the only thing I knew was that I DID NOT WANT to become a teacher / professor. Which is how I ended up at my internship: it was pretty much a combination of books + the need to get out of here for a while. And here I am back a little more than 6 months later.

Throughout the first four months, I still didn’t really know what I was doing there. Then came January, and I attended a comic book festival with my coworkers, partly in order to promote our latest releases, and partly because it was a really popular event. Anyway. I am mentioning this because that’s basically when I had a big revelation of what I wanted to do with my life. Suddenly I had a plan!

I figured that I wanted to be a corrector — basically the person who proofreads novels, contracts and such. Which sounded to me like I could get paid to read and point out other people’s mistakes: how great would that be?

And thus I came up with a plan: finish my internship, possibly find a job in a bookshop, and from October to next June, follow the program that would allow me to become a reader / corrector / proofreader.

I quickly realised that I needed to get a job in order to stay busy and earn some money, so I applied to several positions in various publishing houses and bookstores, and eventually got contacted by one of the bookshops which turns out is quite close to where I live, and believe it or not, I got the job!

So I’ve been working there for a little over a week, and my legs are finally getting used to it… But more importantly, I’m happy that I got the job although it get get confusing and frustrating because I need time to adjust, I don’t know where anything is, and I unfortunately haven’t read all the books in the world.

What I hear every time a customer asks me a question that I cannot answer which is all the time.

And I know that I only just started, and that it’s normal that I don’t know where every single book is, and that I’m here to learn, yet it remains SO FRUSTRATING.

Hopefully I will get used to it, and I guess I will see what the future has in store for me!

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End of the Year Life Update

[a picture of Strasbourg to show off the Christmas spirit that this post is supposed to bear]

Christmas break is finally upon us and with it the endless amounts of food that come with family reunions — I am already permanently full and dreaming of a light tea and a good night of sleep. (My parents came to visit me for a few days and we ate A LOT). The good news is, this year I finished my Christmas presents early!

Now I’m going to spend a few days in Paris with my family, and then I will fly to Berlin for New Year’s Eve, to meet up with my Erasmus friends. I’m so excited to see them, and be in Berlin again as I haven’t been there in almost a year!

As for my internship, with December coming to an end there is only two months left before it ends, and I move back into the unknown of I-don’t-know-what-to-do-with-my-life. I’ve been doing and shipping a lot of packages lately which makes me feel like a Christmas elf. I also feel like I’ve grown closer with my coworkers which is late but nice. One thing I am looking forward to for sure is the International Comic Books / Bande Dessinée Festival that will take place in January. And of course, all the things that the New Year can bring to my life in general.

As for books, I have read almost 90 books this year, which is quite decent, although I’m in a bit of a book slump these days. Hopefully I can finish the two books I’m reading right now by the end of the year. In 2018, I have met some of my favourite authors, discovered new ones, and fallen in love with new stories, and I am grateful for all of that. Cheers to a new year full of books, and I wish you all the best through the Holiday Season!

Tess of the d’Ubervilles: My Review + Life Update

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I’ve been listening to a lot of audiobooks recently while I cook, fold my laundry, or drive to work. I’ve almost ran out of them actually, and I think I will have to get a new Audible subscription. Or maybe I could try Scribd? I still have one book and a half to listen to before I completely make up my mind, we shall see. Anyway, one of those audiobooks I listened to recently was Tess of the d’Ubervilles by Thomas Hardy. I picked it up for two reasons: first, that it was a classic, and one I wanted to read at some point in my life, and the second time, because it was narrated by Davina Porter, and I think she is a fantastic narrator. Then when I started reading it, a few people told me how much they had loved this book, and I guess this got my expectations up: but in the end, I was mostly disappointed.

Title: Tess of the d’Ubervilles
Author: Thomas Hardy
Genre: Classics, Literary Fiction
Release: 1891
My rating: ⭐⭐⭐/5

I know I’m not very active on the blog these days, or even on instagram for that matter (partly due to the fact that the algorithm doesn’t make it as rewarding as it used to be), and it’s partly due to the fact that I haven’t been reading a lot lately, though that is no excuse. The fact that I haven’t been feeling well as well might be an excuse and I’m going to blame that on winter, and the fact that I’m not really happy with my life right now. I’m kind of spiralling down if you will. But hopefully this too shall pass. ANYWAY. Back to Tess. One of my latest reads was Tess of the D’Ubervilles by Thomas Hardy, narrated by the brilliant Davina Porter and to be honest I didn’t really like this book. I really WANTED to like it but I winded up being disappointed. I tried, and many people told me how much they had loved this book, so I really wanted to enjoy it as well, but I simply did not see what others saw in this book.

In some ways, I couldn’t help but be reminded of Great Expectations by Charles Dickens. Yet another 19th century classics that didn’t live up to the hype — if there is such a thing as hype when it comes to classics, you know, I just wished I would have enjoyed it more. For some reason, I also compared it to Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë a lot, and it only disappointed me more, because I love Jane Eyre. Tess’s mother also reminded me of Pride and Prejudice‘s one and only Mrs Bennett, who desperately wanted to marry off her daughters, and so on. Except there wasn’t a good old Mr Bennett to balance that, instead we had a drunkard attached to the idea that his family used to be noble, but who didn’t do anything. These are some of the thoughts that crossed my mind while I was reading Tess of the d’Ubervilles, along with the fact that there was too much caring-about-what-society-and-other-people-think. But I guess that’s only human. I just felt that it was too much for me too handle.

I was frustrated way too many times during the story, by both Tess and Angel. And in addition to that, I found it all too predictable — even the ending. I still gave it 3 stars because I liked the writing style, and the narration by my queen Davina Porter. It also gave me a few laughs in between the religious sermons and the misogyny, and I didn’t feel like giving it a lower rating. But that’s all.


As for what other audiobooks I’ve been listening to lately, I might write a review for The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend by Katarina Bivald, which was a lovely and sweet story, itself full of love for books. I’m listening now to a french story called La Route des Coqueliquots, by Véronique Biefnot and Francis Dannemark. As for physical reads, I haven’t moved from Can We All Be Feminists by June Eric-Udorie and A Blade So Black by L. L. McKinney. I think I’m kind of in a book slump. Actually, nothing really motivates me. I miss summer, I miss Paris, and I don’t really feel like doing anything these days. My life plans for the future change constantly, to come back to the fact that I want to work in a bookshop. Or is it because of The Readers of Broken Wheel? I always tend to be influenced by the books I read, and I don’t know what to think anymore.

I’m going to stop here, because I’m not here to depress you, I just wanted to share a little bit more than a book review today, so here we go. Wish you all a wonderful day, and a happy holiday season ♥

NaNoWriMo (Non) Update

When I was in 3rd grade, my teacher invited one of his friends who was a writer to come and talk to us, and sign some of her books. In my copy, she wrote:

“For Clémence, who dreams of being a writer.”

The first time I did NaNoWriMo was in 2015, and I got around 13k words. I haven’t really touched that story since then.

In 2016, I gave it a try again, this time with a story that had been sitting in my mind for about five years. I was so excited to put it out in the world. Again, I wrote around 13k words (out of the 50k NaNo gives you as a goal). Again, I haven’t touched it much since then.

Last year, I decided not to do it. Instead, I went through some poems I had written through the years and kind of compiled them in a Word document, which I now don’t really know what to do with.

This year I decided to give it a go again. I had an idea, which I got in September. I had an outline, with many steps. It’s the first time I have such a clear plan of what I my story to look like. It has witches, and adventure through Europe, spells and a fluffy F/F romance. Unfortunately, it only has 6k words for now. My biggest worry is that I won’t touch it after November is over.

For now, I try to write at least a few sentences every day. It’s a very slow process, and I’m starting to wonder if I will ever write my own novel. Maybe I need to mature more? Or maybe fiction is not my thing, no matter how much I love reading it. Who knows.

I don’t want to force myself to write, and yet, I also really want to write.

Truth be told, I am really considering writing a non fiction book about my experience with mental illness. People sharing their stories have really helped me, and I just want to do the same thing to others.

In the meantime, I just really want to read the last collection of feminist essays I bought over the weekend, and plan my trip to Berlin for the New Year’s. I don’t know if this year’s NaNoWriMo will be going anywhere in the future, but at least I’m glad I gave it a try. If I manage to keep writing after November ends, then maybe one day you’ll be able to read my story.

The Versatile Blogger Award | 2018 Edition!

I was tagged by Bri’s Book Nook to do the Versatile Blogger Award, thank you so much dear! Since the last time I actually did it was in 2016, I decided to do it again, because a lot has changed since then.

It is possible that other people also tagged me for this Award, if so thank you, and I’m sorry I didn’t reply sooner… Here is my answer! I also realised I haven’t done a Blogger Award post in quite some time, so I decided I might as well give it a go this time. And before I really get into it, I also wanted to make a small life update post at some point soon-ish, so this will do the trick!

Here are the rules:

• If you are nominated, you’ve been awarded the Versatile Blogger Award!
• Thank the person who gave you the award.
• Include a link to their blog.
• Select 15 blogs/bloggers that you’ve recently discovered or follow regularly.
• Nominate those 15 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award.
• Finally, tell the person who nominated you 7 things about yourself!

Here are my answers:

#1. If you don’t know that already, I am a French book lover, and I will soon turn 23. I’ve had this blog since 2015, and it was one of the best decisions I have ever made.

#2. I graduated from college in July and I have a Master’s Degree in Comparative Literature. I never thought I would say that, but I actually really miss uni!

#3. I am currently doing an internship in a publishing house, and shipping (sketch)books all around the world

#4. I tried to do NaNoWriMo in 2015 and 2016 and didn’t go through until the end, which is why I didn’t even attempt it last year. However, this time I’m really planning on doing it, and not giving up!

#5. I’m not quite sure what I want to do with my life, and I’m not quite sure where I want to live, but what I know is that it has to be a big city where there are things to see and do. And by that, I mean book events. I just moved to the countryside for my internship, and every time I see a new book event happening in Paris it break my heart, because I wish I could be there. In addition, I weirdly miss public transports and wish I didn’t have to take my car every time I want to do something, including my laundry.

#6. For the past few years, I have been struggling with depression (on top of my anxiety). However, I am feeling better and I have now officially stopped taking my medication. It feels so good to see the end of the tunnel. Honestly when I started taking them, I thought it would be for the rest of my life. And yet here I am!

I have also recently written an article about my mental health on Marie’s blog @ Drizzle & Hurricane Books if you’d like to read more about it!

#7. I love traveling. So far this year I have been to Germany (Berlin and Baden Baden), Belgium (Brussels), Austria (Vienna and Salzburg) as well as Slovakia (Bratislava). It’s something I have always loved doing, and never grow tired of. I also love traveling alone because it makes me feel so free, it’s amazing! I’m not sure what my next destination will be, maybe Heidelberg or Amsterdam, or somewhere else, who knows… I can’t wait!

Enough about me, for the last part of this post I’m tagging some blogs (not 15 because I don’t want to bother that many people) I discovered recently, feel free to do the tag or not, and have a wonderful day!

Clara @ The Bookworm of Notre-Dame

Lily @ Sprinkles of Dreams

Beth @ Reading Every Night

Kat @ Novels and Waffles

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Thanks for reading!

Internship: Day 1

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Here’s a short post to give you a little life update! This week, I moved near Strasbourg. The whole finding a place thing was a great nightmare, but I am finally settled. And today was the first day of my internship which is in a small publishing house in the middle of nowhere, and will last for six months. I was super excited about it, and the good thing is, after spending the afternoon carrying boxes of books and putting stamps on packages, I still am! I’ve also done some translating, and in between tasks, I even managed to read a comic book – one of our latest releases.

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It takes place in Manhattan and follows soldiers strruggling in a city dominated by King Kong. I have to say, it was quite a fun read!

Anyway, I am now super exhausted – and eating homemade curry that I yet again made way too spicy. But I am also really happy and excited about this new part of my life that is starting now, and that’s pretty much what I wanted to share!