Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

3 books I already gave up on this year

Hey y’all! I’m not here to rehash the merits or issues with not finishing a book that you’ve started. DNFing is complicated and varies person to person. We’re solid on that by now I think.☺But I happen to be a person who is happy to say I’ve attempted to read a book, and decided not to finish. It usually doesn’t happen often, but this year has been an exception! I’ve already DNFd three books this year (and it’s not even been two months!!!), but each is for it’s own unique reason.

My Year Abroad by Chang-rae Lee

This one is just a little too much for me right now. I’m handling a lot of big changes in my life, and frankly have hardly had time to read or blog this year. So I decided to put this one in the attempted pile and maybe pick it back up during the summer, when I have time to lounge. It was mostly just a timing issue with this one.

The Part About the Dragon was Mostly True by Sean Gibson

Ultimately, this one came down to the humour not really working for me. That was like 80% of the novel, and without it, that last 20% of plot wasn’t strong enough to keep me interested. It wasn’t awful, but it wasn’t for me.

Bleaker House by Nell Stevens

This one was an oddity. I saw on Goodreads that I had marked it complete, and I thought “wow I don’t even remember finishing that, it must not have been great.” And then I checked, and I hadn’t actually finished it (just misclicked on GR). And the fact that I couldn’t remember if I had or had not finished it convinced me that I didn’t need to. It was also pretty weird and not what I was hoping for. Again, not awful… but formless enough to prevent me from loving it.

Have you attempted any books this year that you just couldn’t finish? Did you push your way through ones that you wish you could have put down?

Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

How it’s going

I’m in the middle of an ARC that I was pretty excited about, but for some reason it’s just not really grabbing me. I’ve been kind of underwhelmed by the writing, the plot, and the characters, as well as what I suspect will be the romance. I’m almost halfway and I’m still feeling like I don’t really need to finish the book. I will, and it’s not terrible, but it’s always a little disappointing when one that you were excited to get is kind of… meh. Maybe I’ll be proven wrong as it continues, and the ending will sparkle! That’s all I can hope for in the end. πŸ™‚

Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

Giving “My Year Abroad” by Chang-rae Lee a shot!

I saw a new release recently, and read a sample of the first few pages. I was strangely drawn to it. Though perhaps it’s not so strange, since it’s by an (apparently, judging by the awards and reviews I’ve read) super well-respected author, Chang-rae Lee. His sentences flow on and on like a river looking for the ocean, not in a particular hurry, because the destination is ultimately known and once there everything will simply begin again anyway. That sentence was my (paltry) attempt at recreating the mood and style he infuses into every word.

It’s a lot of imagery, and metaphorical language that somehow is also clear cut and precise. Even when it seems like the story is meandering, you don’t abandon it, and are rewarded with the moment when it all pieces together gently, knowingly, and you’re brought in on the secret.

Basically it’s a lot of what I don’t usually read. Literary fiction can often tire or bore me even when I love aspects of it in other ways. It’s a rare sampling for me. But Chang-rae Lee went to school at PEA, and I almost went to school there, and I find that interesting enough to pursue finding his book My Year Abroad from the library and giving it a go. I’m about 15% of the way in right now, I have ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA what the plot of the story is or where it’s heading, and I’m planning on just moseying on through and letting his words carry me wherever we end up going.

Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

January 2021 wrap up: a lot of stuff besides reading

~reading

How many books that I planned did I read?

I planned eight. Of those eight I read — one. One. Because I got distracted by a bunch of other books instead (6 total finished). My mood reader-ness hit hard this month, and I actually don’t hate it!

The Plan:

The Result:

So I read 6 in January, and only 1 was planned (the one that had already been in progress, of course. 🀣) The rest are still on the backlog to read through. I did attempt one other from the list, but gave up about 75% of the way through.

Continue reading “January 2021 wrap up: a lot of stuff besides reading”
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Top 5 books with House in the title!

Hey y’all! I’ve gone and done another list of top 5 books, this time with the word house in the title. I was lounging around in bed this morning thinking about the trends in book titles lately, and house kept popping up as one I remembered seeing a lot of. So I decided to see where it takes us!

To get the below list of books, I went to Goodreads and found the 5 most popular books with the word house in their titles. So take a look and let me know what ones you think deserve to be in this list!

5. Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo

Top 5 genre tags for this title:
Fantasy, Fiction, Mystery, Adult, Paranormal

2 Sentence Summary:
A girl with no future is suddenly offered a full-ride to Yale after surviving a horrific multiple homicide. The catch is that she has to infiltrate the inner echelons of the elite and see what kind of shady shit they’re up to.

Have I heard of / read this before?
Oh yes, I’ve heard of this. xD

Do I like the cover?
I do! Shades of black and gray can be very effective, plus I love snakes.

Will I read it?
Eh, maybe eventually. I’m not really feeling the whole “elite of the school” vibe, but I’m totally in for demon summoning or devil bargains or whatever the hell it turns out they’re into. I might read this in a year or two, particularly once the hype has died down even more. Just won a Goodreads choice category, but that doesn’t always work out for me…

Continue reading “Top 5 books with House in the title!”
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A- Z Challenge 2020 Complete!

Hey y’all! I know it’s almost the end of January, and that 2020-related posts are practically passe by now (I guess?), but I still have a fab one left for you. Yay! 😁 In 2020, not only did I read a totally bonkers amount of books by my standards, but I also successfully tackled the A-Z title challenge, or the alphabet challenge, or whatever you want to call it! Meaning for each letter of the English alphabet, I read a book with a title that started with that letter.

“But wait!” you cry. “What about those crazy end letters, like V and X and – my god – Z?!

Yep, I got those covered too. Actually, one of my last letters I got was P, and I was surprised by how many options there were for Y and Q. Who knew? X’s are still an untapped market though. Come on, authors, take your cue!

Anyway, I did manage to do it! Below is a lovely little gallery of 26+ covers from books I read spanning the alphabet. There are some letters that have more than 1 book listed because I just couldn’t choose. Some books felt too important to my overall reading experience of the year to leave them out! You’ll find a little about each book after the gallery listing, too, in case you’re curious. I’m confident there will be titles that few people have read or heard of, so get excited! πŸŽ‰

The gallery of A-Z

Continue reading “A- Z Challenge 2020 Complete!”
Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

Luck at the library

Well, I just posted my 2021 Library Love challenge yesterday, and I’ve already been doing pretty well this month with it! I put holds on two recent releases I was excited about, fully expecting I wouldn’t actually get a copy for probably a month or two since they were popular. Plus, the little time estimated gadget and the number of other holds was… pretty lengthy.

Happily (and unexpectedly), I got both within days of submitting the hold! I have no idea what happened — maybe other people cancelled their holds? maybe the library got more copies? — but one is finished and the other is nearly. ☺

The first was Siri, Who Am I? by Sam Tschida that surprised me by being a shade more thoughtful than I anticipated. Frankly I was in it for a probably generic but still enjoyable light read. Girl has amnesia, has to figure out who she is (was?) from her only true source: social media. But since most people fake their lives on social, can she even trust that?

The other is Concrete Rose by Angie Thomas, which you may well have heard of. And if you haven’t, I’ve read about 75% of it and can happily say it’s quite good! I think it’s a little softer and less gut-wrenching than her other book with it, The Hate U Give. Still good, for sure, but you can probably read it without wanting to rage at the world. Though, who knows: I haven’t finished it just yet!

Good news if you have the next hold on this book after me: it’ll be coming your way soon. 😁

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January 2021 TBR: probably starting off slow

Hey y’all! I do recognize that it’s already almost halfway through the month, but nonetheless here is my TBR! In reality I probably wouldn’t have stuck to it anyway, so it doesn’t matter if I post it early in the month or not. πŸ˜‚ Here are some of the books I’d had in mind to start off the year. πŸ™‚

BOTM Delayed

Well in December I got two books from Book of the Month, Memorial and The Office of Historical Corrections. I didn’t read either of them in December because I was going all-in on challenge books and newer releases, so they’re on the list for January! Which works out, actually, because I’m not interested in any of this month’s BOTM selections.

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2020 Goodreads Reading Challenge

Hey y’all! I gave a way more in-depth look at the stats and numbers for my year in reading in 2020 in this post a few days ago, but here’s the Goodreads side of things! Once again, this number of books that I read is FAR above my average (60ish) because of the craziness of last year. But let’s get started! πŸ™‚

The 11 page book by Mindy Kaling was weird because there was an actual whole length book, but for some reason it was broken up into separate pieces on Amazon. So I ended up reading each separate section of the regular book as it’s own book. Not sure why they did it that way, but whatever! And, of course, Paolini’s grand return. Look, *I* was a fan of this, and yes some of that is probably my excitement about Paolini. But I don’t typically like space stories, and this one…. I was fully sold on this one.

Continue reading “2020 Goodreads Reading Challenge”
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2020 Year in Books (Thanks Storygraph!)

Hey y’all! I’m a bit of a stickler for precision (and also I knew I would finish one or two more books in the last few days of December) so I’m just now posting all my “2020 year end” kinds of posts. It seems like most people do them in December, which confuses me so much! If you’re that person, what do you do about any books you read after you post that post?? Do they just not get included?!

Ahem.

So here’s all the pretty charts and stats and numbers based on what I read in 2020! As a reminder (or disclaimer for anyone not aware) I was unemployed or part-time for 9 months of 2020, so I ended up having a whole lot more time than usual, and a whole lot of need to escape into a book. So numbers are…. high. Much higher than my normal. πŸ˜…

Unsurprisingly, my top read genre was lighthearted, because not only is that my usual but do you remember 2020, y’all? I think we all needed it. Followed by emotional (ditto – sometimes I need a good cathartic cry) and adventurous (because the issues in a world of demons and dragons make my own issues seem pleasantly tiny).

Also unsurprisingly… my least read genre was sad. I do not tend to seek out sad or scary things. πŸ˜‚

Oh, hey, and 141 BOOKS?! Like I said… I had a lot of time to fill. My usual in a year is like 50-60.

Continue reading “2020 Year in Books (Thanks Storygraph!)”