June 2017 Wrap-Up

June Stats:

Total books read: 11

Bet Me by Jennifer Crusie Talk Me Down by Victoria Dahl A Scot in the Dark by Sarah MacLean If Wishes Were Earls by Elizabeth Boyle Have You Any Rogues? by Elizabeth Boyle And the Miss Ran Away with the Rake by Elizabeth Boyle The Viscount Who Lived Down the Lane by Elizabeth Boyle Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan Rich People Problems by Kevin Kwan The Day of the Duchess (Scandal & Scoundrel, #3)

An Interrupted Tapestry by Madeline Hunter

Number of pages: 3,714

Written by Men: 2 (or is it 1 since I read 2 books by the same guy?)

Written by Women: 9

Diverse Authors: 1

Nonfiction: 0

Fiction: 10

Paperback: 1

Hardback: 0

Library books: 10

eBooks/Kindle: 10

Audio books: 0

Rereads: 2

DNF: 0

Favorite book of June:

Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan. Interesting that a reread is my favorite read of the month.

Challenges to date:

Goodreads: 59/75

Book Riot Read Harder 2017: 5/24 (I’m so behind for this challenge.)

#ReadMyOwnDamnBooks: 1

Bet Me by Jennifer Crusie

Purchased/Acquired in June:

Of Beast and Beauty Beast Plus One If I Run The Red Umbrella The Witch's Vacuum Cleaner and Other Stories My Name is Not Easy

These are all free audio books from this website. There are about six weeks left to get these free audio books.

The Real Jane Austen: A Life in Small Things Daughter of Time (After Cilmeri, #0.5)

And here are the two Kindle books. One I bought on sale and the other free. (So do kindle and audio books count as purchases? And if so have I totally screwed up my #ReadMyOwndDamnBookschallenge?)

My Quickie Book Reviews:

Vampire in the Lemon Grove

The Invisible Library

A Murder in Time

Across the Web:

I’m a huge fan of Tom and Lorenzo Fabulous and Opinionated  It’s a dedicated to fashion and read carpets, but they also do some wonderful analysis and critiques of tv shows and movies based on the costuming. If you are a fan of Mad Men, read their analysis of it via the costumes. Its amazing. They also do a smaller version of this for American Gods the TV show based on the Neil Gaiman novel.  Click here, here, and here to read their wrap up costume posts for the season.

In the Blogisphere:

This is a fun post about Favorite Female Book Characters.

And a lovely discussion about what writers do to themselves.

 

 

 

May Wrap-Up

May Stats:

Total books read: 7

Like No Other Lover (Pennyroyal Green, #2) I Kissed an Earl (Pennyroyal Green, #4) Maybe This Time A Murder in Time (Kendra Donovan, #1) First Star I See Tonight (Chicago Stars, #8) Natural Born Charmer (Chicago Stars, #7) Match Me If You Can (Chicago Stars, #6) American Gods (thumbnail images courtesy Goodreads)

Number of pages: 2,804*

Written by Men: 1*

Written by Women: 7

Diverse Authors: 0

Nonfiction: 0

Fiction: 8*

Paperback: 1*

Hardback: 0*

Library books: 6

eBooks/Kindle: 7

Audio books: 0

Rereads: 4*

DNF: 0*

Favorite book of May*: I don’t have one this month. Edited to add: American Gods is my favorite this month. I finished it just before midnight last night and needed to add it to my May Wrap-Up.

Challenges to date:

Goodreads: 48/75*

Book Riot Read Harder 2017: 5/24 (No change from last month. I need to get on the ball.)

#ReadMyOwnDamnBooks: 2*

Purchased/Acquired in May:

From Quarterly Box: (Arrived May 2nd)

Borne Gutshot The Blue Fox

And I got these audio books free from Sync: Audio books for Teens. Click on the previous link if you would like to sign up for this program and receive free audio books too.

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #1) Feed In Our Backyard: Human Trafficking in America and What We Can Do to Stop It The Gathering (Shadow House, #1) Beast  Of Beast and Beauty

In the Blogisphere:

Because I love challenges (I have read 83 of the books on the list.)

I’m always looking for advice for blogging. I just need to start following it!

I love visiting literary sites. One of these days I’ll blog about literary places I’ve visited.

How was your reading in May? Have you read any of the books I mentioned above? What did you think ? Leave a link to your May wrap-up in the comments below?

April 2017 Wrap-Up

Here are my stats for April:

Total books read: 10

Three Nights with a Scoundrel (Stud Club, # 3) Voyager (Outlander, #3) A Rake's Guide To Pleasure (Huntington, #2) In the Bed of a Duke (Cameron Sisters, #3) A Little Bit Wild (York Family, #1) Daisy's Back in Town Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay (The Neapolitan Novels #3)Vampires in the Lemon Grove Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Harry Potter, #2)

Refuge: An Unnatural History of Family and Place
courtesy of Goodreads

Number of pages: 3,139

Written by men: 0

Written by women:10

#DiverseAuthors: 0 (I’m really not doing well with this challenge.)

Nonfiction: 1

Fiction: 9

Library books:5

eBooks/Kindle: 5

Audio books: 0

Reread: 1

Did Not Finish (aka DNF):

A Murder in Time (Kendra Donovan, #1) The Tenant of Wildfell Hall The Witches: Salem, 1692

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Dewey’s Readathon)

The Witches by Stacy Schiff (I need to finish this one. It’s been on my DNF list since October.)

The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Brontë

A Murder in Time by Julie McElwain

Favorite Book Of April:

Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay (The Neapolitan Novels #3) Refuge: An Unnatural History of Family and Place

I can’t decide which one I like better. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Challenges to Date:

Goodreads: 40/75 (changed the goal from 52 to 75 this month.)

Book Riot Read Harder: 5/24

#ReadMyOwnDamnBooks: 10

Purchased/Acquired in April:

Cowboys Are My Weakness by Pam Houston

I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith

The Dead House by Dawn Kurtagich (audio book)

Dewey’s 24 Readathon:

As is becoming a tradition, I participated in Dewey’s Readathon on Saturday. As always I had a wonderful time. I read 3 books and started 1. And I manged to meet my reading goal and go just a tiny bit over! 1,022 pages.

The most difficult hours of reading are the last three or four hours for me. It’s hard to keep focused on what I am reading during those hours and am easily distracted from it. So I officially gave up during hour 22. So my reading time is approximately 22 hours and 30 minutes. I’m quite pleased with myself.

As always with the readathons I use it as an opportunity to knock some books of my TBR pile and meet goals for the challenges I’m participating in. All the books I read qualified as #ReadMyOwnDamnBooks and two of them will count towards the Book Riot Read Harder 2017 challenge.  I had some yummy food to nosh while reading and my man brought a big flat white from Starbucks, and overall had a fun time. If you are looking for a readathon, I  heartily recommend this one. The next one is scheduled for October.

 Across the Web:

As you may know if you follow my blog April has been dedicated to the Brontë sisters. And I’ve noticed a lot of Brontë related things happening all across the web this past month. Here is a link to an article about the sisters.

I loved in the South for many years and came to love a hot Krispy Kreme doughnut. Here is a link to an interesting essay about it.

This has been one of strangest stories of the last 10 years. I hope that this article helps put to rest the story of Rachel Dolezal for good.

Blog Posts I Love:

I love posts form fellow bloggers that make me think about blogging in a new way. And also kick me in the butt and up my blogging game. Click on this link.  http://thebookishlibra.com/2017/04/21/discussion-post-why-im-so-slow-to-write-book-reviews

How was your reading and blogging life in April? Did you meet your goals for the month? Did you participate in Dewey’s 24 hour Readathon? Let me know in the comments below and be sure to leave a link to your April wrap-up. Happy reading in May.

March 2017 Wrap-Up

This month I fell–hard!–into a reading and blogging slump. Really, my blogging slump has been ongoing since January? I think? Anyway, I didn’t really do a lot of reading or blogging this month. So, in order to try and pull myself out of it, I read a few romance novels at the end of the month to get me going again. And Romance novels usually do the trick slump wise. And to try and jump start my blogging for the year, I decided to have a theme for the month of April. I’ll post more about it on my April TBR post scheduled for Monday.

Here are my stats for March:

Total books read: 6

Twice Tempted by a Rogue (Stud Club, #2) One Dance with a Duke (Stud Club, #1) Highland Beast (MacNachton Vampires #6) Lead Me On (Tumble Creek, #3) The Story of a New Name (The Neapolitan Novels #2) The Royal We

Number of pages: 2269

Written by men: 0

Written by women: 6

#DiverseAuthors: 1, but 2 1/2 books by her. Tessa Dare’s One Dance with a Duke and Twice Tempted by a Rogue.

Nonfiction: 0

Fiction: 6

Did Not Finish (aka DNF): 3 The Lost Tudor Princess by Alison Weir, War of the Roses: Stormbird by Conn Iggulden, Wicked Widow by Amanda Quick

Challenges to Date

Goodreads: 27/52

Book Riot Read Harder: 3/24

#ReadMyOwnDamnBooks: 7

Library books: 7 (includes DNF)

eBooks/Kindle: 8

Audio books: 0

Reread: 1   The Royal We by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan (aka The Fug Girls). I’ve been following the Prince Harry gossip on the web, so I re-read this fun Prince William & Kate Middleton fan fiction.

Purchased in March: 5

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë

Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

I bought all three of books because of the covers. I love them so much. So Pretty!

Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay and The Story of the Lost Child by Elena Ferrante. Yes, I’m in love with Neapolitan series. I finished reading the second book and went to the bookstore the next day to pick up the last two in the series.

Favorite Book of March: The Story of a New Name (The Neapolitan Novels #2)  by Elena Ferrante. At some point I will write a book review for this book, but I’m still swimming about in this world Ferrante has created, and I don’t think I can give an assessment at this point. Maybe when I finish the series? 

Books Started in March: 3

Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay by Elena Ferrante

The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Brontë

Three Nights With A Scoundrel by Tessa Dare

 Across the Web:

I love celebrity gossip and pop culture. And so I listen to two or three podcasts that focus on these topics. One that caught my attention  at the beginning of March was Missing Richard Simmons. It’s really interesting to hear what happened to Richard Simmons’ fans when he withdrew from fame. But this article made me think about this from a different point of view. How much privacy do celebrities need? Or even how much should they expect? This article mentions the recent outing of the identity of Elena Ferrante which I found interesting since I’m in the middle of the her Neapolitan series.   

This article from Outside Magazine I found fascinating. I live in a state that has a lot of wilderness, National Parks, and other Federal lands. And people go missing and are killed fairly frequently. And as I drive across my state and visit these lands, I often think about where to hide the body. Let me explain. I think I have a murder mystery floating around my subconscious that is trying to get out. So, someday soon, I will start writing it. And when I do, I want to have this article saved so I can refer to it.

I have been listening to You Must Remember This podcast almost nonstop since I discovered it. The podcast focuses on Hollywood true stories delving beyond the gossip. As of today they have 100 episodes to enjoy. And most are only about 30 minutes long, so I’m able to listen to a complete episode as I’m running errands around town or a quick walk around the block.  She includes in her show notes for each episode a list of the books she uses to research the episode. If you enjoy stories from old Hollywood, you will love this podcast.

Blog Posts I Love:

This post inspired me to have a themed blog next month.

This post  made me realize that my blogging has really been in a slump. After reading it I started really thinking about how to get me excited again about blogging and improve my blog posts. Thanks Kourtnireads for the kick-in-the-butt I desperately need.

 

How was your reading and blogging life in March? Did you meet your goals for the month? Let me know in the comments below and be sure to leave a link to your March wrap-up.

February 2017 Wrap-Up

February has been a good reading month, but not a good blogging month. And I need to improve my reading of diverse authors in the coming month is my big takeaway from this list.

Total books read: 9

Written by men: 1

Written by women: 8

Diverse authors: 0

Nonfiction:0

Fiction: 9

#ReadMyOwnDamnBooks: 4

Purchased in February: 4

Library books: 4

Audio books: 0

Books Abandoned: 1 The Kingmaker’s Daughter by Phillipa Gregory. I just dislike her writing style. It distracts me and I don’t enjoy her story telling at all. and this annoys me because I love reading Tudor historical fiction

Books started in February: 2

The Story of a New Name by Elena Ferrante [#ReadMyOwnDamnBooks]

The Lost Tudor Princess by Allison Weir [Library eBook]

List of Titles Read:

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

It Takes a Hero by Elizabeth Boyle

The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman

Attraction: Elements of Chemistry #1 by Penny Reid

The Girls by Emma Cline

Heat: Elements of Chemistry #2 by Penny Reid

Capture: Elements of Chemistry #3 by Penny Reid

Neanderthal Seeks Human by Penny Reid

Truth or Beard by Penny Reid

Favorite Book:

The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman

Purchased:

Heat: Elements of Chemistry #2 by Penny Reid [Kindle]

The Argonauts by Maggie Nelson [Paperback, Quarterly Box]

The Annie Year by Stephanie Wilbur Ash [Paperback, Quarterly Box

The Animators by Kayla Rae Whitaker [Paperback, Quarterly Box]

How was your reading life in February? Did you meet your goals for the month? Let me know in the comments below and be sure to leave a link to your February wrap up.

 

January 2017 Wrap-Up

Books Read in January:

Library Books:

Troublemaker: Surviving Hollywood and Scientology The Dangerous Viscount (The Burgundy Club, #2) The Amorous Education of Celia Seaton (The Burgundy Club, #3) Something About Emmaline (Bachelor Chronicles, #1) This Rake of Mine Confessions of a Little Black Gown Stealing the Bride Tempted By the Night His Mistress by Morning

Troublemaker: Surviving Hollywood and Scientology by Leah Remini [eBook]

The Dangerous Viscount by Miranda Neville [eBook]

The Amorous Education of Celia Seaton by Miranda Neville [eBook]

The Rogue Not Taken by Sarah MacLean  [eBook]

Something About Emmeline by Elizabeth Boyle [eBook]

This Rake of Mine by Elizabeth Boyle [eBook]

Confessions of a Little Black Gown by Elizabeth Boyle [eBook]

Stealing the Bride by Elizabeth Boyle [eBook]

Tempted by the Night by Elizabeth Boyle [eBook]

His Mistress by Morning by Elizabeth Boyle [eBook]

#ReadMyOwnDamnBooks and Read Harder Challenge:

S.

S by J.J. Abrams and Doug Dorst

Started in January:

 

 

Ready Player One

Ready Player One by Ernst Cline

 

 

 

Across the Blogisphere:

#PostingReviews on Inside My Minds.  I hadn’t thought about doing posting my book reviews on retail sites like Amazon–the online retail site that I use most frequently. I immediately went to Amazon and posted my last three book reviews to the site.  Such a good idea. Thank you,  Ashley @ InsideMyMinds

Reflections an Open Apology to Dolly Parton is  an interesting exploration of this bloggers feelings about Dolly Parton. I think Dolly has been dismissed by many people over the years, and this is a nice examination of the writer’s reversal of opinion.

I have an Instagram account, but I really don’t know how to use it. This article, Extend Your Blog’s Reach With Instagram, really helped me see how to use my account.

Across the Web:

A fascinating essay about fruitcake. How-and- Why Did Fruitcake Become a Slur.

At the end of the Obama presidency many essay and articles came out about it. Here is my favorite: Empathy and Escapism-Obama’s Secret to Surviving the White House Years: Books.

How was your reading life in January? Tell me in the comments, and be sure to leave a link to your January Wrap-Up, too. I love to see what everyone else is reading.

Looking Back at 2016: My Top 10 Reads

I read so many good books this year. Here is my list of my favorite books this year.

The Tiger's Wife

It really surprised me. I loved this book.

 

 

 

 

Bird Box I wasn’t sure if I would like this book, but it was so scary and tension filled. Read it!

 

 

 

 

Station ElevenAnother really good apocalyptic story. Read it!

 

 

 

 

One Foot in Eden I read this for my book club. And it is so good. If you love Southern Lit, read it!

 

 

 

 

We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie It’s more an essay than a book, but it’s a fabulous argument for why we all should be feminists.

 

 

 

You Will Know Me by Megan Abbott Really a fascinating read about how a talented child will take over a family.

 

 

 

The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith I listened to this one. It’s the first audio book I’ve listened to in a while. And I really enjoyed it. The narrator did a great job, plus I learned how to pronounce so many Brit words and places.

 

My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante This is one of my favorite books of this year. I’ve hopped on the Elena Ferrante bandwagon and am planning to read the second one soon.

 

 

 

Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter This is another one that I wasn’t really sure what it was about when I picked it up to read. But it is really good.

 

 

 

The Trespasser (Dublin Murder Squad, #6) I love this series of books by Tana French so much. The latest in the series is so good, and it slyly comments on the genre of books with “Girl” in the title who are a bit angry. Read it!

 

 

So what do you think of my list? Have you read any of the books? What were your favorite books of 2016? Don’t forget to leave your link below so I can visit your blog. Happy Reading!