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It’s Monday What Are You Reading?

book date its monday

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week. It’s a great post to organise yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment, and er… add to that ever growing TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme has had various host over the years and I’ve loved checking in with their different blogs – the newest host is Kathryn and The Book Date. I’m looking forward to following her and participating in this meme again ;)

It’s kind of weird to think that we are already halfway through the first month of the year. Winter has finally decided to make a pseudo-appearance in the DC area – we had a little bit of snow yesterday (not enough for it to really stick) and its ass-biting cold, so i’m curled up on the couch with some blankets, one of the dogs curled at my feet (no idea where the other one is) and the new season of Hell’s Kitchen going on the TV (I love me some Gordon Ramsey). I have to say that this has probably been the slowest start to reading that I have ever had in a year – its the 18th of the month and I’ve only read 10 books (and that includes 2 audiobooks). I know that seems high for some people, but i’m normally rapidly approaching the 20 book mark by this point of the year. That being said, this past week has been a slight improvement over the first week in the year with several books finished (being sick has def. made it easier to relax and read, rather than doing a million other things in the evenings).

Last Week
dangerous womenMy big success of the week (if you want to call it that) was that I finished my designated “first book of the year.” The book, Dangerous Women, is a short story collection from a bunch of popular authors, all with the theme of dangerous women. Overall, the stories were ok, there were a couple that I really enjoyed, like Diana Gabaldon’s story Virgins (about Jamie and Ian pre-Outlander); as well as Jim Butcher’s installment (part of the Dresden Files series) and Lev Grossman’s. And unfortunately, with any anthology there were ones i just didn’t enjoy, specifically for me, it was George R. R. Martin’s – I’m probably one of the few people who hasn’t read his Game of Thrones series (although I have the entire collection on my kindle), but based on my lack of enjoyment for his short story, I’m honestly in no rush to pick it up.

Goodnight tweetheartThe theme of my reading with several books I finished this week was “left wanting more” – 2 of the books that I finished in the last couple of days (Shimmy for Me and Goodnight Tweetheart), I wanted them to be longer. The romances between the hero/heroine felt too short and not well developed; or in the other case, the story was progressing nicely and then it just ended and I was like WTH…so that was kind of frustrating for me. I know that at least one of the books is a popular book among my friends and for some a DIK (aka a Desert Island Keeper), but for me, it was a mere 3 stars – although it was 4 stars up until the very end when I felt the ending just killed the rest of the story.

Before I GoBut on the other side, I had a couple of strong/enjoyable reads this week, specifically, Before I Go and About a Dragon. Before I Go (Colleen Oakley) is the story of a woman in her late 20’s diagnosed with terminal cancer and her goal to find her husband, someone else before she died. I alternatly cried and laughed during her exploits. I’m looking forward to writing my review of it in the near future. About a Dragon is the second book in G.A. Aiken’s Dragon Kin series – this series is one where I had book 1 loitering on Mt TBR for several years before I actually read it at the end of last year and I’m looking forward to continuing the series.

18Jan

Currently/Upcoming Reading
when it comes to reading this weekend, I’m like the little engine that could, just chugging along – I’ve been alternating reading, watching TV and the mandatory weekend errands (laundry, grocery shopping etc). But I’ve made good progress and am enjoying the books that I have going right now. I’ve gone back to an old favorite, who I haven’t read in a few years (Sandra Brown), as well as a couple of authors that I discovered in the past year (Pam Jenoff and Marina Adair). Here’s to a great reading week!

18Jan current

 
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Posted by on January 18, 2016 in It's Monday! What are you reading?

 

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Blogger New Year Challenge – Day 3

new year blogging challenge

Fourteen days. Fourteen posts. All focused on a fresh blogging start and getting you motivated for a new year. The Bloggers New Year Challenge is hosted by Patti, at Parajunkee View.

Day 3 – The negative things in blogger 2015 to avoid in 2016

In general, 2015 was a pretty low-down year for me – I pretty much stayed out of the blog-o-sphere when it came to drama. I didn’t get any negative blog posts about my reviews (like happened in 2013) and in general, it was a pretty chill year. Here’s hoping that 2016 will be the same way.

I think for me, my negative things from 2015 to avoid are more personal feelings about books I pick – for example, I often feel guilty when I review multiple books during the year by favorite authors – Its like, I feel I should review lesser known authors, and yet at the same time, they are favorite authors for a reason…so my goal for 2016 is to have less of those negative feelings about the books that I review on the blog.

 
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Posted by on January 3, 2016 in Blogging Community

 

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Random Reads Rebooted (1)

Random Reads Rebooted

Random Reads was a blog feature that used to be hosted by the blog, I’m Loving Books, however, it is no longer active. Random Reads Rebooted is a reimaged version of this and I hope you will join me.

I don’t know about you guys, but I have a bad habit of buying books and then forgetting about them…I’m like a squirrel storing away its nuts for winter, except I do it with books. Random Reads Rebooted is dedicated to finding (and reading) those books that have long been forgotten about it.

On the first Saturday of the month (or within that first week), randomly select a book that is on your bookshelves (it could be a virtual shelf like a Goodreads one, or a real shelf that you have someone randomly numbered). I recommend using random.org to help you pick that special or forgotten book. At the end of the month, come back and let us know what you thought about the book that you picked.

January Pick
Towards the end of 2015, I started actively cataloging all my various kindle ebooks to my goodreads account (let’s just say only about 15% had actually made it to my shelves prior to this)…so my random shelf for January is going to be my Amazon Books Purchased in 2014 shelf which currently has 173 books on it. Using random.org, my random number was 169 which lines up with Jazz Funeral by Julie Smith.

Jazz funeral

Everybody loved easygoing Hamson Brocato, producer of the successful New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, but even so he ended up stabbed to death in his kitchen the night of his own JazzFest party. NOPD detective Skip Langdon, Smith’s spunky heroine last seen in New Orleans Mourning, gets a ready-made suspect list from the victim’s live-in lover, singing star Ti-Belle Thiebaud. Included are Ariel Bruge, Ham’s assistant, apparently a woman scorned; his father George, enmeshed with family members in a bitter disagreement over the family’s fast food (“Poor Boy’s Po’ Boys”) chain; and Patty, the stepmother Ham was cool about. Skip notes the list’s omissions: Ti-Belle herself (often heard arguing with Ham at the top of her powerful voice) and Melody, Ham’s teenaged half-sister who vanished the same day Ham died. Skip doesn’t miss much as she probes the victim’s tangled relationships, remaining all the while a consistently convincing character herself, grumbling about her boss and anxious about her long-distance significant other.

What about you – what is your random read for January going to be?

 
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Posted by on January 2, 2016 in Random Reads Rebooted

 

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Bloggers New Year Challenge – Day 2

new year blogging challenge

Fourteen days. Fourteen posts. All focused on a fresh blogging start and getting you motivated for a new year. The Bloggers New Year Challenge is hosted by Patti, at Parajunkee View.

Day 2 – Great Things in Blogging 2015

Hmmm, what great things are in store for 2016 when it comes to blogging…let’s see….honestly, i have no idea, because as usual, I’m really not prepared for 2016 (although, i guess i can say, i am slightly since its technically New Years Eve as I’m writing this post). I guess my “great things” in blogging for 2016 are going to hopefully be a couple of permanent blog features that I want to get up and running – one was something that I started with last year and was popular, but ran out of steam and the other is a former book meme from another blog (now defunct :( ) that I am hoping to get up and running again (because I really enjoyed it)…

so stayed tuned…

 
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Posted by on January 2, 2016 in Blogging Community

 

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Bloggers New Year Challenge – Day 1

new year blogging challenge

Fourteen days. Fourteen posts. All focused on a fresh blogging start and getting you motivated for a new year. The Bloggers New Year Challenge is hosted by Patti, at Parajunkee View.

Day 1 – Your Blogger Resolutions

Hmmm, I’m normally not a huge one for resolutions, especially New Year’s ones because I always seem to fail pitifully at them. I do really well in the beginning, but then real life gets in the way and they fizzle out. That being said, my blogger resolution this year is going to be consistency. Consistency in posting, which for me means no huge chunks of time with no posts (like September of 2015). It also means making sure that I am organized (lol, don’t laugh too loud) and making sure that I have posts always ready to go.

 
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Posted by on January 1, 2016 in Blogging Community

 

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First Book of the Year

first book of the year

This is the second year that I have participated in Book Journey’s feature, First Book of the Year. The goal is simple – tell us (us being all the bloggers out in the world) what your first book of the new year is going to be. It could be a book you have already started, or one that you are holding off reading until the clock says 2016. its totally up to you.

Last year when I participating, I was really excited about the book I had chosen, unfortunately, I took it out of the library too soon and had to return it before i finished reading it, because for the first time in like forever, a non-new release, had holds on it (this happens maybe like once a year!). So I didn’t actually get my first book of 2015, officially finished until like October, when I remembered to re-borrow it from the library.

This year, I am going to do better, because both the book (and audiobook) that I have picked as my first book to read (or listen to), are both slotted into a challenge that only runs for the first 2 months of the new year. I ended up picking 2 books, a book book and an audiobook because my commute is really long right now and I find myself listening to as many books as I have been reading.

marie books

My first two books for 2016 (modeled so lovely by my black German Shepherd, Marie – although I still can’t believe I got her to sit still long enough to take the photo) are Dangerous Woman, an anthology edited by G.R.R. Martin and containing short stories by Diana Gabaldon (Outlander series); Joe Abercrombie; and Sherrilyn Kenyon, along with many more. I’m looking forward to this one because even though it is a tome (the print version comes in at around 800pgs), short stories tend to be quick and easy reads that I can do it fits and starts (since that tends to be how my reading mojo is going right now). My first audiobook of the year is Inheritance of Loss, by Kiran Desai – I picked this one because it meets several different challenges that I am doing in 2016, including reading more diverse authors.

Here’s hoping 2016 starts with a bang!

first books of new year

 
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Posted by on January 1, 2016 in General

 

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Happy New Year

happy-new-years-985741_1280

 
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Posted by on January 1, 2016 in General

 

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