I have to admit, I didn’t have the best reading month in January. I only managed to finish five books. This was due in large part because I got stuck in The Fountain and wouldn’t let myself DNF it. Because I was struggling so badly with this book, I went several days without reading anything at all. Sadly, that wasn’t the only book that didn’t hold my attention this month. Here’s my list:
- Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. 374 pages. I loved this book. Cline is a genius world-builder. This was such an immersive experience reading this book, I didn’t want it to end. There were bits that were predictable (my husband and I debated about these) but I didn’t mind them and they didn’t take away from my enjoyment of this book. So glad it was my first of 2017.
- Dark Matter by Black Crouch. 342 pages. This was another fabulous read for me. Again, Crouch is a great world-builder but he’s also a fantastic character developer (not that Cline isn’t but this really stuck out for me in Dark Matter.)
- The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman. 329 pages. This was the other book I struggled with in January. I wanted to love this book so much that I think I had too high expectations for it. Great premise but poor world building. Cogman drops us in this sci-fi/fantasy/steampunk-type world with very little explanation or back story. Maybe this gets better with subsequent books, which is why I still plan on reading book two in this series.
- The Swans of Fifth Avenue by Melanie Benjamin. 400 pages. This was another novel that I really enjoyed reading. This is about Truman Capote, Babe Paley, and the rest of their NYC socialite group. I cannot say enough good things about this book. Benjamin really takes you into this time, the 1950s, and these people’s lives. This was a book that constantly had me researching aspects of it online because it’s such an intriguing story. The people were also fascinating and most of them, with the exception of Capote, I had never heard of prior to reading this book. I highly recommend it to historical fiction fans.
- The Fountain of St. James Court or, Portrait of an Old Woman by Sena Jeter Naslund. 448 pages. I very recently reviewed this book here on the blog so I won’t go into it again why this was my most painful read of January.
For five books, that is a total of 1893 pages and an average rating of 3.4 stars. 3.4 stars doesn’t sound too bad except for the fact that I am scarred by The Fountain!!! Just kidding and slightly exaggerating.
How did your January of reading measure up? Any duds? Any books you’d recommend? I only reviewed one of these books on my blog (linked above), but if you’d like a more in-depth review on any of the others, you’ve only to ask.
Time flies, ya know? I just realized it’s already Jan 3rd and I haven’t post a wrap up for December. Having the kids out of school and the husband home for the holidays really throws off my perception of time.
In December, I read a total of seven books, one being a graphic novel and one being a novellette. I actually stopped reading when I finished The Night Circus on December 29th because I ran out of room on the page I was using to track my reading in my bullet journal. Seriously. Not kidding. I’m that anal. I couldn’t stand the thought of either not recording another book or having to waste an entire new page for just one more book. I need therapy.
So, I read:
- Behind Closed Doors by B.A. Paris. 304 pages.
- Three Sisters, Three Queens by Philippa Gregory. 556 pages.
- Wool by Hugh Howey. 509 pages.
- Gilded Cage by Sherry D. Ficklin. 80 pages.
- Shift by Hugh Howey. 570 pages.
- I Hate Fairyland, Vol. 2: Fluff My Life by Skottie Young. 128 pages.
- The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. 400 pages.
For seven books, I read a total of 2,547 pages and an average rating of 3.71 stars. That, folks, is a good month of reading. I only had one dud on my list that I wish I could just forget about. If I could, that would be six books with an average rating of 4.16 stars.
My favorite for December is The Night Circus. This was a truly magical book. Very close behind it are Wool, Shift, and I Hate Fairyland. If you’re not reading the I Hate Fairyland graphic novels, you should be. They’re so funny. I love the language, the color palette, and the artwork is wonderful.
I only reviewed one of these books on my blog (linked above), but if you’d like to hear my thoughts on any of the others, you’ve only to ask. 🙂 I hope your December of reading was as great as mine.
Saying goodbye to yet another month. November was pretty busy for me. We’re still dealing with the cleanup from my daughter’s car accident. Still a lot of things up in the air where that’s concerned. We also had my step mom down to visit. It was a totally laid back, rest and relax, type of visit but it still left me with little time for anything outside of being a good host. Directly following that, we had Thanksgiving here in the United States. The Saturday after Thanksgiving is the big Ohio State vs. Michigan football game and boy! Was that an exciting game. OSU barely won (for the 5th year in a row) and I was exhausted following the double overtime.
With all of the above, I didn’t get a whole lot of reading done. Frankly, I can’t figure out what to read next and haven’t picked up a book since I finished The Wicked + the Divine graphic novel five days ago. Anyway, here’s a summary of my month in reading:
- Gemina by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff. 608 pages.
- The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon. 384 pages.
- The Bone Witch by Rin Chupeco. 400 pages.
- Apprentice in Death by J.D. Robb. 375 pages.
- The Lost Property Office by James R. Hannibal. 400 pages.
- The Wicked + The Divine by Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie. 144 pages.
That is a total of 2311 pages and an average Goodreads star rating of 3.67. My favorite pick for the month would be Gemina. For books that I’ve already reviewed, I’ve linked back to their original posts. If you’d like to hear my thoughts on any of the books not already reviewed, leave me a comment. I hope you had a fantastic month of reading in November and here’s to an even better December!
And a note from real life…
October was quite the month. As I mentioned in a previous post, my oldest daughter was in a car accident. She walked (hopped on crutches, but you know what I mean) away with a minor concussion, sprained ankle, and something else in her foot that we’re still getting checked out. She also had lots of bruises and scrapes from being thrown against the door on impact and the seat belt. The other driver has a broken leg. When the EMS crew, police officers, and ER doctors all saw the accident (or pictures respectively), they were shocked that both my daughter and the other driver weren’t killed in this accident. They were so very lucky. As a result of this accident, my life has been taken over. It’s been full of doctor’s appointments, car buying trips, phone calls to various insurance companies, doctors, etc., and taking my daughter out and about on her errands while she was unable to drive herself. This is why my blog was light on posts the past couple of weeks. I’m going to try and schedule some stuff for November since this is an ongoing thing. I’ve been so busy that I’m behind on EVERYthing in my life. I’m a week late for spring registration. I haven’t kept up with my bullet journal or hand lettering practice. I’m behind on writing book reviews and actual reading. My house is a disaster and the list goes on. I’m hoping that things are finally going to start to slow down and get back to normal, especially with the holidays right around the corner.
Anyway, with Dewey’s Readathon last month, my book totals are actually pretty good. I read a total of 12 books, which is two more than I read in September. To be fair, four of October’s books were graphic novels. But hey, they still count.
- Brave New World by Aldous Huxley. 268 pages.
- The Mathematician’s Shiva by Stuart Rojstaczer. 366 pages.
- To Capture What We Cannot Keep by Beatrice Colin. 304 pages.
- Sweet Tooth, Vol. 1 by Jeff Lemire. 128 pages.
- Timekeeper by Tara Sim. 368 pages.
- Sepulcher by Kate Mosse. 560 pages.
- I Hate Fairyland, Vol. 1 by Skottie Young. 128 pages.
- Lumberjanes, Vol. 1 by Noelle Stevenson. 128 pages.
- Saga, Vol. 6 by Brian K. Vaughan. 152 pages.
- Seraphina by Rachel Hartman. 499 pages.
- Victoria by Daisy Goodwin. 352 pages.
- Iron Cast by Destiny Soria. 384 pages.
This is a total of 3,637 pages and an average rating of 3.58 hearts. My favorite graphic novel, by far, was I Hate Fairyland. My favorite novel for October would be The Mathematician’s Shiva. I’ve linked the books that I’ve reviewed to their original posts. If there’s something on this list that you’d like me to talk about, just leave a comment.
I had a pretty good month with my reading. In September, everybody is back to school and things tend to quiet down quite a bit. At least in my world. I more than doubled the amount of books I read in August. I also started using my bullet journal to track how many pages I read a day and if I get to read at all. It’s a nice visual and it jars me if it’s late in the evening and I haven’t taken the time to relax with a book yet. Anyway…
- Extracted (The Lost Imperials, #1) by Sherry D. Ficklin. 310 pages.
- The Sherlockian by Graham Moore. 350 pages.
- Paper Girls, Vol. 1 by Brian K. Vaughan. 144 pages.
- Phoenix Rising (Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences, #1) by Pip Ballentine and Tee Morris. 402 pages.
- This Adventure Ends by Emma Mills. 320 pages.
- A Study in Scarlet Women (Lady Sherlock, #1) by Sherry Thomas. 336 pages.
- The Affinity Bridge (Newbury and Hobbes, #1) by George Mann. 336 pages.
- The Enemy (The Enemy, #1) by Charlie Higson 448 pages.
- Dead Man’s Shadow (Mrs. Stonier Mystery Book, #2) by Anne Wlikinson. (dnf)
- The Heretic’s Creed by Fiona Buckley. 224 pages. (Review coming)
I read a total of nine books (not counting the one I didn’t finish) and a total of 2870 pages and an average rating (on GR and not including the book I dnf’d) of 3.44 stars. I linked the books that I’ve reviewed already on this blog and the review for The Heretic’s Creed will be posted on Thursday. If there are any books on this list that I didn’t review and that you’d like me to, leave me a comment. I’d be more than happy to write one up.
Like I said, compared to the four books I managed to read in August, I’m pretty happy with the nine I read in September. How’d your September go? Read anything you’d recommend or any duds I should avoid? 😉
Considering how busy I was in August, I don’t think my monthly wrap up is all that shabby. I wish that I didn’t have to actually put reading time in my planner to ensure that I read, but some months are like that. Here we go.
Books Read in August
- The Girl from the Savoy by Hazel Gaynor. I rated this a 3 out of 5 stars on Goodreads. It was a fun read, but predictable. The plot twists weren’t all that twisty, but I’m soft on books set in the 1920s so I enjoyed this novel.
- Marie Antoinette’s Darkest Days by Will Bashor. I rated this book 4 out of 5 hearts in my review.
- A Study in Scarlet by Arthur Conan Doyle. I rated this 5 out of 5 stars on Goodreads. Absolutely love this book. Well, other than the Mormon part. What was up with that??
- The Moving Toyshop by Edmund Crispin. I gave this 3 out of 5 stars on Goodreads.
Books I’m Still Reading from August
- The Sherlockian by Graham Moore. I didn’t make a lot of progress on this book this month, I’m disappointed to say. I am still holding out hope that it’ll pick up its pace.
- The Dragon Keeper by Robin Hobb. I didn’t make any progress with this book at all. Maybe one or two pages. I’m keeping my opinion completely on hold for this one.
- Extracted by Tyler H. Jolley and Sherry D. Ficklin. This is a book that I requested from Netgalley and started Sunday Aug 18. I admit that I judged this book entirely by its cover. It’s very steampunk. I almost dnf’d it once I realized that it’s not all set in Victorian England. Talk about judge-y. I’m about a third of the way done and am reserving judgement. I’m pretty sure I’ll end up saying that it’s not to my taste, but time will tell.
How’d your August shape up? Did back to school stuff impede your reading? Let me know!
If I was going to say that I track my reading, I would say that I do so on Goodreads. I wish I was more disciplined about tracking my reading. In 2014, I had a reading journal. It was a journal that was specifically for reading and books. Looking back, I was pretty good about keeping it up to date. Maybe I need another one for 2017.
Anyway, I do my best to keep Goodreads up to date with what I’ve read, what I’m currently reading, and my TBR. As for my TBR, I added a category, “need to buy” so that my husband can look at my Goodreads account and see what books I want but don’t actually own for holidays and such. I also use this for myself when I’m out buying books and can’t remember if I’ve bought one or another. Unfortunately, I’ve forgotten to remove that “shelf” occasionally and have found duplicate copies of books on my shelf. Oops.
As for the Goodreads Reading Challenge, I did not complete my goal last year, ending the challenge at 62 of 75 books read. In 2014, I did complete my goal at 63 of 60 books. For 2016, I set a goal of 65 books thinking that would be a good compromise between 2014 and 2015. Looking at my progress thus far, I’m behind!! ARGH! As of this writing, I am at 34 of 65 books and Goodreads estimates that I am SEVEN books behind schedule.
In my defense, it’s been a somewhat eventful year. I had the semester from hell at the beginning of the year. Then my dad passed away in March. I’m still dealing with that. My husband and I had our anniversary trip to Europe in May. We’ve had family down to visit twice; once at the end of May and then again earlier this month. It really hasn’t left me a lot of time for reading. I’m actually currently reading five books, lol. I’ll leave the deets of that for another post.
I think I might fill out my reading numbers with a few graphic novels. They count!