First Readathon

Hello blog I miss you! How terrible have I treated you for months and months and months….

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I’m not sure how much I am going to come back to it, but I do have plans to clean up and restart my blog back up. And what better way than to discuss the nerdy nerdy thing I did this past weekend – a readathon!?

In the middle of treatment and a very hot July, I decided that the idea of sitting in my apartment and reading sounded like the most magical thing I could do.

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I found a post in the Owlcrate Facebook group (lots of thoughts about that group, but that’s for another day) that asked if anyone was participating in 24in48.

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My Owlcrate Box came during the readathon YAY!

What the heck was 24in48??

I headed over to 24 in 48 to take a look. Simply put, you read for 24 hours in 48 hours of a weekend. It started at 12.00 AM on Saturday, July 22nd and ended at 11.59 PM July 23. There were opportunities for prizes and cheering, and honestly, it sounded exactly like what I needed. Plus it allowed for audiobooks to count, so I had no excuse to miss out on cleaning and cooking for the sake of reading.

So I signed up and started planning my books.

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My single issue comics?
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The books and volumes to read..

…..and knew that would be too many. BUT it also inspired me to clean out my Goodreads TBR lists.

 

Since starting two book based podcasts, I’ve had some low-key anxiety about how my reading time is starting to feel more like I’m back at school rather than for fun. It’s such a thin line to walk, and rather than do so, I’ve just been panicking about it. Because of this, and because I was between episodes of Judging Book Covers Podcast and Fableulous Retellings JUST started, I figured I could take 48 hours to read WHATEVER I wanted. And remind myself that I can balance my reading and podcast reading again.

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The starting stopwatch!

What I Read During 24in48 Readathon

Apparently I was REALLY BEHIND on my graphic novel reading.

  • 2 Books
  • 4 Graphic Novels
  • 1300 Pages

1. It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover

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Published: 2016
Genre: New Adult, Romance, Contemporary
Ratings: moose-mdmoose-mdmoose-md 3/5 Moose

This book was recommended to me a few times last year, and  I wanted to read something light to start off this Readathon, It…..wasn’t that at all This book was written kind of as an homage to the author’s life and relationship with her mother. It was a bit heavy and yet a bit of a weird chick lit book. I was happy with the ending though. It resolved in an appropriate manner without seeming cheesy or off? But I was glad to be done with it. It wasn’t for me, it wasn’t for my fun summer readathon, but I’m glad I read it.

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Charlie was really excited about reading Saga again!!

2. Saga Volume 6 by Brian Vaughn (writer) and Fiona Staples (Artist)

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Published: 2016
Genre: Graphic Novels, Sci-Fi, Space Opera
Rating: moose-mdmoose-mdmoose-mdmoose-mdmoose-md

Saga! I love Saga. I don’t even read it in single trades — I let it build up and binge when I can! It’s always worth it though. This issue discusses Kindergarten and jail? Plus a lot of WTF are the adults doing. The end of this trade brought some tears….but didn’t prepare me for what was to come.

3. Saga Volume 7 by Brian Vaughn (writer) and Fiona Staples (Artist)

29237211Published: 2017
Genre: Graphic Novels, Sci-Fi, Space Opera
Rating: moose-mdmoose-mdmoose-mdmoose-mdmoose-md

Have tissues for this one. It’s……it’s an ending. This one primarily takes place on Phang, which new friends and relationships.

Just……have tissues.

 

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Another look at the clock..

4. We Can Never Go Home Volume 1 by Matthew Rosenberg, Patrick Kindlon, and Josh Hood

26527323Published: 2015
Genre: Graphic Novels, Fantasy??? Bloody??
Rating: moose-mdmoose-mdmoose-mdmoose-md

First review:

What….what did I just read?

This is violent and weird and beautifully done and WHAT DID I JUST READ.

Honestly, I still haven’t changed my thoughts.

5. Monstress Volume 1 by Marjorie Liu (writer) and Saga Takeda (Artist) and Rus Wooton (Letterer/Designer) 

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Published: 2016
Genre: Graphic Novels, Fantasy, Horror, Steampunk,
Rating: moose-mdmoose-mdmoose-mdmoose-mdmoose-md

This book is equally gorgeous in its writing and artwork. It too me a little longer to read than normal because it is BEAUTIFUL. Also the cats in this book are amusing. I am definitely looking forward to the new trade. But 1900s Asia art deco steampunk with demonic connections and AHHH.

 

6. Bird Box by Josh Malerman

18498558Published: 2016
Genre: Horror, Dystopia, Mastery, Apocalyptic
Rating: moose-mdmoose-mdmoose-mdmoose-md

This book was recommended by a friend who is friends with the author. I liked the concept — a cross between The Happening and The Road, with the added bonus of you cannot look outside or anything the could have been outside too long. If you do, you will die.

This story got back and forth between the “present” which is when the main character and her two kids are rowing, blindfolded, down the river, and the “past,” which is at the beginning of the apocalypse. When the story lines fold into one, it is heartbreaking and terrifying. Sandy Bullock is going to start in the Netflix….something, so I am looking forward to seeing what comes out next.

I also started The Last Harvest by Kim Liggett, which I’ll be finishing up this week/end. I might stick to this horror kick??

How Did I Feel Post Readathon?

I honestly had a blast doing this readathon! It got me mentally back to a good baseline, and I feel more organized to walk the line of podcast reading and personal reading. I feel like I could have done more with time to prepare (I decided Thursday night to do this??) but honestly, I’m proud of what I accomplished.

….Next Readathon?

I am considering two more in August! But I’ll post about those later this week. Otherwise, here’s my face as I realized I could have done Booktube-a-thon, but I didn’t have enough time to plan. So close! But I do have two new ones picked out, and I am also considering what I want to do/need to do to start and host my own. Or if someone needs a host, pick me!!

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And finally, thank you again to Rachel at 24in48 for creating this readathon – I had a blast in my first one.

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2016: A Book Review

One of my resolutions is to remember to post more (I got overwhelmed between trying to write more and adjusting to my new city!) But I did still read a ton, and I was organizing my books into categories when I saw Mari at Story and Somnomancy post this breakdown that I liked, that it looks like Jamie at Perpetual Page Turner posted. So here’s my reading habits broken down from 2016 – enjoy!

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2016 Reading Stats

Number of books read: 80
Genre You Read the Most From: Young Adult (too vague?) 

*added in*
Under 250 pages (not including novellas): 26
Between 400-449 pages: 6
Between 450-499 pages: 1
Over 500 pages: 2
Over 1000 pages:  0

Number of…
Audiobooks: 10
Re-reads: 11
DNFs (did not finish): 2 (About 5-7 that I plan on finishing, but shelved for now.)

Number of books rated…
Five Stars: 21 (9 of which were comic volumes) 
One/Two Stars: 7 2 stars, 0 1 stars

Number of authors met in 2016:  11

  • Victoria Aveyard (Signed)
  • Sophie Jordan
  • Rouhani Chokshi (Signed)
  • Sarah McCarry
  • Marie Rutkoski
  • Renee Ahdieh
  • Victoria Schwab (x2….and already planning to see her in 2017 T__T) (Signed) 
  • Sarah Porter
  • Fran Wilde 
  • Kim Liggett (Signed) 
  • Erika Lewis

Number of book events attended in 2016: 5

Number of books you read in one day: 2 at the most

Number of books that made you cry: At least 12. I am a crier. 

Number of 2017 books you have on pre-order: 0 (I don’t pre-order, I just wander into BoW eventually.) 

Best in Books

1. Best Book You Read in 2016:

Stand-Alone: Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

Series: Firebird (A Thousand Pieces of You, etc) by Claudia Gray

Mid-Series: A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab

Graphic Novel: Paper Girls by Brian K. Vaughan

2. Book You Were Excited About and Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t? Remembrance by Meg Cabot, The Last Star by Rick Yancey

3. Most Surprising (in a good or bad way) Book You Read? Horrorstör by Grady Hendrix

4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People to Read (And They Did)? A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

5. Best Series You Started in 2016?  Best Sequel of 2016? Best Series Ender of 2016?

Best Series You Started in 2016? Asylum by Madeleine Roux 

Best Sequel of 2016? A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab

Best Series Ender of 2016? Firebird series by  Claudia Gray

6. Favorite New Author You Discovered in 2016? Ernest Cline and Rouhani Chokshi

7. Best Book From a Genre You Didn’t Typically Read/Was Out of Your Comfort Zone? The Color of Water: A Black Man’s Tribute to His White Mother by James McBride

8. Most Action-Packed/Thrilling/Unputdownable Book of the Year? Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

9. Book You Read in 2016 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year? I mean obviously A Gathering of Shadows, prior to the final book’s release.

10. Favorite Cover of a Book You Read In 2016? The Wicked + Divine 1831 (both), A Gathering of Shadows, This Savage Song

11. Most Memorable Character of 2016? Lila Bard. Still to this day. 

12. Most Beautifully Written Book Read in 2016? Station Eleven by Emily St. John Madel and The Star-Touched Queen by Rouhani Chokshi

13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2016? ?Laughable Love by Milan Kundera

14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2016 to finally read? World War Z by Max Brooks

15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2016? Taken from After the Witch Hunt by Megan Falley 

“The first time we made love I realized why
I never prayed. One human can only say
Oh God so many times.”

16. Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2016? Carry On by Rainbow Rowell (longest) and Belinda Blinked.

17. Book That Shocked You The Most (Because of a plot twist, character death, left you hanging with your mouth wide open, etc.) A Gathering of Shadows (I KNOW I KNOW)

18. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)
(OTP = one true pairing if you aren’t familiar) 
Rhy and Alucard FOR SURE

19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year Harlan Coben brought back Myron Bolitar and Win Lockwood and my heart was full again. 

20. Favorite Book You Read in 2016 From An Author You’ve Read Previously: Home by Harlan Coben

21. Best Book You Read In 2016 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure: Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2016? Alucard Emery 

23. Best 2016 debut you read? The Star-Touched Queen by Rouhani Chokshi

24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year? ?

25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read? ?

26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2016? 12 books. I am a crier. I don’t think I can list them all.

27. Hidden Gem Of The Year? What’s a Soulmate by Lindsey Ouimet

28. Book That Crushed Your Soul? I honestly cannot think of one. 

29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2016? I have no idea — I guess Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, as it was the only drama I read. 

30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)? A Gathering of Shadows, because of the bloody cliffhanger. 

LOOKING AHEAD

1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2016 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2017? Heartless by Marissa Meyer

2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2017 (non-debut)? The Bone Witch by Rin Chupeco or Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth

3. 2017 Debut You Are Most Anticipating? Caraval by Stephanie Garber

4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2017? A Conjuring of Light by V.E. Schwab

5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2017? Finally finish a book! 

6. A 2017 Release You’ve Already Read & Recommend To Everyone: None yet

Planning January – Updates

It’s the middle of January, so it’s time for a small update to make sure I am staying on track!

Books TBR

  • 5th Wave by Rick Yancey (went on the list because I finished it Jan 2)
  • The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey (Read, just haven’t reviewed yet)
  • Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
  • Broken by Susanne Valenti (ARC) (Currently Reading)
  • Teen Frankenstein by Chandler Baker (ARC)
  • Cranky Ladies of History – Short story compilation (Currently Reading)

Projects to Work On

Okay, I haven’t really finished any of these yet. But I have been working on the presents for Grey! 

  • 85 lines of my 4th Doctor scarf (I’ve done the math, and it’s 1004 lines total. I should have it done and ready for next year)
  • Presents for Grey
  • Hats for a friend’s daughter

Monthly Goals

  • Fix/Redo my Bucket List – it’s a bit old and outdated
  • Get out and do a 2nd hike (weather permitting — won’t be fun to do all the 52 hikes from May-August now!) It’s been too cold and I’ve been fighting a crappy cold. But hopefully I’ll find a day this month.
  • Write 9,000 words
  • Get back into yoga Currently working on – I am doing DailyBurn’s yoga program. 

Other Things

I decided on my yearly reading challenges! I am doing Bustle’s Reading Challenge, which encourages reading books by women and writes of color. I need to sit down and assign a book to a spot, but I’m excited. I am also doing Modern Mrs. Darcy’s reading challenge, which is 12 books in 12 different categories. As I finish books in either challenge, I’ll be sure to denote it on my reviews.

I also cleaned up my 30 Days Challenges and made a list of hiking places to check out near the city. I still need to make a list of things to check out in NYC.

Planning January

One of my resolutions is to be a bit more organized. Today I accomplished quite a bit by organizing my apartment. I packed up my yarn and cleaned around my desk, also setting up a lamp in my front hall. I’m really not a fan of overhead lights, so I have a collection of lamps throughout the entire apartment. I also finished organizing my kitchen, getting ready for my new table and chairs that are coming this week.

So here are my plans for the month, outside of office organizing.

Books TBR

  • 5th Wave by Rick Yancey (went on the list because I finished it Jan 2)
  • The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey
  • Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
  • Broken by Susanne Valenti (ARC)
  • Teen Frankenstein by Chandler Baker (ARC)
  • Cranky Ladies of History – Short story compilation

Projects to Work On

  • 85 lines of my 4th Doctor scarf (I’ve done the math, and it’s 1004 lines total. I should have it done and ready for next year)
  • Presents for Grey
  • Hats for a friend’s daughter

Monthly Goals

  • Fix/Redo my Bucket List – it’s a bit old and outdated
  • Get out and do a 2nd hike (weather permitting — won’t be fun to do all the 52 hikes from May-August now!)
  • Write 9,000 words
  • Get back into yoga

NYC Places to Visit

  • National History Museum
  • Flophouse Screening

Top Ten Tuesday: 2016 Books

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly listed hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week top is 2016 “debut” novels, but I’m going to ignore the debut part of that….so here are the top ten books I’m looking forward to in 2016!

1) A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab

The sequel to A Darker Shade of Magic. I’ve read a small portion that she’s put out, and it’s fabulous. And again the cover is gorgeous AGAIN:

A Gathering of Shadows Final

BLACK LONDON IS BACK. WHAT’S GOING TO HAPPEN?! Eeeeeeee. If you haven’t figured it out, A Darker Shade of Magic is probably the best book I read this year.

2) Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard

So I haven’t posted my review for book one, The Red Queen yet, but it was definitely a good one. I enjoyed it immensely, and I like that the cover theme is similar to the first book (and no teen model in a fancy dress. I’m looking at you, The Selection series. And speaking of….

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3) The Crown by Kiera Cass

I’m going to be honest, I’m not a huge fan of this series, and I’m even less of a fan of the author. It should have ended at book 3. But this is apparently the last one, and dammit, I’m all about finishing series. And I kind of just want to know who she ends up with. But if it doesn’t end with this one, then I’m done. No True Blood series for me. Look, these books are easy and light to read. But mostly, I’m ready for them to be done.

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4) Remembrance by Meg Cabot

There is going to be a book 7 of The Mediator series?! What the hell?! I’m game for this! I’ll be rereading the series in either January or February, because it’s been a few years (re: 2009) since I read the other 6 books. Unless someone has a lengthy synopsis for the first 6? But seriously, I loved this series.

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5) The Shadow Queen by C.J. Redwine

Okay, you can’t judge a book, but the cover, but this cover is so pretty! I’ve seen some ARC reviews that seem positive, plus it’s a fairy tale re-telling. I’m game. But seriously, LOOK AT THIS COVER:

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6) Heartless by Marissa Meyer

I love that YA is big in fairy tale re-telling. This is an Alice in Wonderland, Queen of Hearts background story. I haven’t read anything by Marissa Meyer yet, but I respect her work and it’s on my forever TBR list. This may be the first book. (Cover isn’t out yet, but I love her Lunar Chronicles series covers).

7) Fool Me Once by Harlan Coben

Look My. Coben. I love your books. I have since I was in high school. Tell No One is forever on my top ten list, and Myron Bolitar helped change my want list in a man. So…..can you release a new Bolitar novel? Please? Either way, I’m excited to read the next stand-alone book.

8) Passenger by Alexander Bracken

I can’t figure out exactly what categories this book falls into, but I like the idea of it. While I haven’t read any of her other books, this one sounds fascinating.

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9) And I Darken by Kiersten White

GoT (which I don’t watch or read) but in the Ottoman empire, with Vlad the Impaler. Look, Twilight ruined vampires, but I still love them. And if this can make them freaky and good again, I’ll try it.

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10) See How They Run by Ally Carter

Okay, so I haven’t read the first book of this series. But I loved her spy book series, and I’ve got her first book. And if they’re anything alike, I’ll enjoy it.

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I’m looking forward to 2016 reads! The subway is definitely going to need some distractions……

 

December TBR List

AKA my Subway distraction list!

I’ve seen this floating around and think it’s an excellent idea. I read 8 and a quarter books in November, so I’m going to make my list based on that. I also need to wrap up the books I’ve started and have sitting on my Goodreads list. So we’ll go with 8-10 books this month, being way too optimistic as my mom comes at the end of the month. I am currently at 45 books for this year, when my original goal was 24. 24! I am definitely out of my book reading funk.

  • Attachments by Rainbow Rowell (Currently reading)
  • The School of Good and Evil by Soman Chainin (I bought this for my sister’s Christmas present, and it sounded so darn cute! I figured it’d be a quick read.)
  • Chronicle of a Death Foretold by Gabriel Garcia Marquez (120 pages. I can do this.)
  • Teen Frankenstein by Chandler Baker (Netgalley read/review for the month)
  • Secondhand Souls by Christopher Moore
  • Daughter of Deep Silence by Carrie Ryan
  • Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
  • A Scarlet Bailey Christmas Chick-Lit (because loneliness is fun and Christmas is magical)
  • The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey (So I can see the movie in January!)
  • Famous Last Words by Katie Alender

A Mini Update

I feel like I haven’t read anything in months! This isn’t true at all of course, but I definitely haven’t been reading like I was. I recently accepted a promotion in my company, and the promotion comes with a great big move to New York City. Nerves, excitement….you name it, I’m feeling it.

This move is happening quickly— early November. With that, my book reading has slid back a little bit. With the rainy weekend on the way, maybe I can catch up a little this weekend. I’m working on a few crochet projects too for people before I leave. Three hats and a blanket are on my list. These might be the posts coming this week.

I hope you are all enjoying Banned Book Week! I wore my banned book scarf that I got from my best friend. It’s amazing! I am thinking of wearing it for a second time this week. That’s not that weird, is it?

So seriously, I promise that I’ll be a little more active over the next few weeks, between apartment hunting and moving.

Too Many Choices by I’m EXCITED!

Super quick post, but oh I am super excited! I got my first round of advanced readers copies, I won a copy of Found by Harlan Coben off Goodreads this week in their Giveaways, and it’s the weekend! Nothing but reading and crocheting and cleaning and small working project planned this weekend! 

Books planned for this weekend:

  • Finishing The Shadow Cabinet
  • Starting Wind, Sand and Stars (a co-worker passed it along to me at work, so I shall try it)
  • Finishing Chronicle of a Death Foretold (a recommendation I’ve had for too many months)
  • Starting one of the ARCs (I LOVE CHOICES 😀 😀 :D)
    • Firsts by Laurie Elizabeth Flynn
    • Academy Girls by Nora Carroll or 
    • The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George

Trying to understand boarding school…

….when you went to public school.

I went to public school all the way through my undergrad, then did a brief and regrettable year in a private grad school (regrettable because the student loans? Oh boy.)

While I do have some “experience,” which is all chalked up to five years on an intense online community, I still can’t quite grasp the boarding school life. So tonight I am composing a list of books that are set at a boarding school. Research, of course….ahem. This research is for my NaNoWriMo novel. This research is definitely going to be easier than reviewing and deciphering insurance policies!

My Ridiculous Boarding School Book List for Research

  • Gallagher Girls Series by Ally Carter (I’m in the 4th of 6 books)
  • Heist Society by Ally Carter
  • The Naturals by Jennifer Barnes
  • A Little Princess by Frances Burnett
  • A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray
  • Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins
  • Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
  • Anna and the French Kiss Series by Stephanie Perkins

Boarding School Books for Re-reading?

  • Princess Academy by Shannon Hale (THERE IS MORE THAN ONE?!)
  • Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling (Well, why not.)
  • Etiquette and Espionage by Gail Carriger (okay… I should actually finish this one first)
  • Wicked by Gregory Maguire

I could obviously use as many recommendations as possible. I took a look at Goodreads, and there are 529 books on the best list. So if there are any that I absolutely have to read, please feel free to throw them my way! I’m happy to live in….imaginary plaid skirts for awhile.