Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Bookish (and Not So Bookish) Thoughts/Hiatus


Link up with Christine from Bookishly Boisterous

  • You may or may not have noticed it's been a little quiet on this part of the world wide web. That's simply because, life happens. Fortunately, it's all good happenings but they leave very little time for book reviewing and blogging because most of the happenings are not so bookish.
  • While I have done a lot of reading, I've done zero reviewing and don't have any posts scheduled so I ask that you bear with me for a little while until life calms down (insert mini-hiatus).
  • Not intending to be vague but I will fill you all in once things have settled.
  • Just this week alone we have the beginning of college football season (my absolutely favorite time of the year, Go Tigers!!!), football viewing party, our fantasy draft, and our one year anniversary. Woooo to all of the above but there will be lots of calories and alcohol consumed which means very little free time or reading time. Not complaining, just explaining.
  • Since I know the #boutofbooks ladies hate to hear someone talking about how they "failed at BofB," I'll just allow my lack of bout of books related posts speak for itself...
  • I finally got my new social security card with my married name. For an efficient and effective process, I would not recommend getting married in upstate New York. Complicates things, I tell ya!
  • I just wanted to check in and update you on where I've been, why it's so quiet, and what to expect in the near future. I'm hoping to get some reviews written soon but I'm not making any promises for lots of action ASAP. I'll post when I can :) 

Friday, August 15, 2014

A little change of heart...

via Pretty In Fiction
In the most unsurprising event of a book bloggers life, I've come over to the dark side. I've started a DNF shelf on goodreads. If you've been around these parts for awhile, you know that I pride myself on reading a huge range of genres and finishing everything I've started. Until recently that is. I'm not sure why this was a source of pride with me but at some point, I felt like every book deserved a chance and I was open to anything so why not? Now that I've matured, (*coughcough*) I've realized that my time is better spent reading the great books than feeling sorry for the crappy ones and I've just about had enough.

I think my change of heart stems from finding random books that I have downloaded on my nook and wondering how they got there and why I am reading them. As I look through these books, I realize that a lot of them are the free books that I got from B&N when I first got my nook and I was downloading willy-nilly. Big mistake, let me tell you! I've stumbled across a handful of horribly written, hard to follow, who-published-this? crap. That is why, I've proudly made my DNF list and I'm sticking to it.

Now, with that being said, I'm still going to read a lot of genres and the majority of the books I pick up. If it makes it onto my TBR list, I assume it was there for a reason and am more than likely going to give it a shot. If it's randomly on my nook, it stands less of a chance. I really liked Julia's idea from The Broke and The Bookish where she decided to give a book 30 pages before determining whether she continues or not. I will probably bump my limit to 50 pages but if it's painful to get through by that point, I'm giving myself permission to call it quits and DNF that sucker. At this point, my DNF list is at 2 (and I need to add one more) but I'm open to adding as I go along and no longer scared of missing out. There are plenty of great books that will hook me 50 pages in!

Do you DNF?!?!?

Monday, August 11, 2014

How I Live Now

How I Live NowTitle: How I Live Now
Author: Meg Rosoff
Read: July 19, 2014

Summary: “Every war has turning points and every person too.”

Fifteen-year-old Daisy is sent from Manhattan to England to visit her aunt and cousins she’s never met: three boys near her age, and their little sister. Her aunt goes away on business soon after Daisy arrives. The next day bombs go off as London is attacked and occupied by an unnamed enemy.

As power fails, and systems fail, the farm becomes more isolated. Despite the war, it’s a kind of Eden, with no adults in charge and no rules, a place where Daisy’s uncanny bond with her cousins grows into something rare and extraordinary. But the war is everywhere, and Daisy and her cousins must lead each other into a world that is unknown in the scariest, most elemental way.

A riveting and astonishing story. goodreads

Review: I'm pretty sure this book has been making it's way around the blogosphere so you have probably already heard about it. To be honest, this book was a little weird. And no, I'm not referring to the cousin-love, I can deal with that, but it surprised how basic this story was. Now, let me try to explain (which I may fail miserably at because I'm not entirely sure how to put into words what I'm feeling), there isn't much background to any of the characters, the war is never fully explained, and the story, while yes, there is romance and that's part of it, really only boils down to basic survival skills. That being sad, I enjoyed the overall book but it took me a while to understand why.

First off, the characters. We know very little about Daisy other than she has been sent off by her father and wicked step-mother to live with distant relatives. We know she has a eating disorder (which I thought was cleverly revealed as the story went on) and a best friend in NY but that's about it. We know basic facts about her cousins but not much else as far as background goes. The relationship between Daisy and Edmond is lightly developed but it never gets too deep. Like I said, it's all very basic.

There there are the what-the-heck parts of the book that are never fully explained. For example, what was the telepathic thing? Who all had it and did they really have it or was it just a coping skill? Also, who started this war? Who all is involved? Why? There is a lot of unknown. Usually, this would really bother me but it didn't in this story. I took it for what it was an found an appreciation for the story of survival that really developed.

I think the blase attitude that Daisy and her family had about this "war" was very relatable. There are constantly battles going on around the world and we find a way to function despite them. That is, until they affect us directly. Take 9/11 for example. We all knew something was going on in the middle east but I guarantee the knowledge of the politics and what is happening over there increased ten-fold after the towers fell. So it makes sense to me that Daisy didn't really take the war seriously (you know, besides the fact that they were all just kids) until it showed up on her door step and she saw the immediate effects like no water or electricity. That's when the survival story of Daisy began.

The writing of this story was a little odd with very little punctuation and lots of random run on sentences but when we are introduced to Part Two of the story (which I wasn't expecting at all) it all makes sense and I actually think it was kind of genius! I liked the wrap up at the end and the ability for Daisy to explain a few things but mostly, I liked seeing the honest portrayal of how war can affect a family. It would have been easy to wrap it all up in a nice little bundle but instead, we were shown how Daisy lives now which is not perfect, but works for her.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Be Back Later...

As of 5 o'clock today, I'm officially on vacation. I'm road tripping with my sister to upstate NY and checking out for a solid week. I can't wait! The only down is that the hubs and puppy don't get to come but I'm going to comfort myself with plenty of gin & tonics and sunshine. #sorrynotsorry. 

While I have some reviews/posts planned, I will not be around this little blog next week. I'm hoping to come back strong with Bout of Books but I may just spend all of my time reading and very little blogging. Who knows, I'm flexible I tell ya. But, due to literally being on an island in the middle of the St. Lawrence River, I will not be active in the blog world for a week or so. I promise I will read your comment and respond when I get back, but until then, HAPPY READING!!!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Bout of Books 11!

It's that time of year again, we're gearing up for Bout of Books! I dropped the ball on the last round but I feel like this round will work perfectly for me. It starts right in the middle of my vacation so I'm hoping to get plenty of good reading done. If you are new to BoB, head over to grab the button and blurb from below and link your post to this page to sign up. Pretty easy!

Bout of Books 11

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, August 18th and runs through Sunday, August 24th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure, and the only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books read in a week. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 11 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team

I will probably set some goals later this week but considering I'm leaving on vacation on Friday (can't wait!!!) and my birthday is tomorrow, I may not get around to it and will have to play it by ear the week of the 18th. I'm not putting strict parameters on myself this go-around (pshhh like I did last time?) because life happens but I would like to get a couple books in as well as a handful of challenges. I'll let you know as I go.

Join me in linking up and participating in Bout of Books 11!

Friday, August 1, 2014

August 2014 Reading List


It's that time again! This year is flying by and every month I do my goals and can't believe how quickly everything is going. And to tell you the truth, it's not a bad thing. First of all, August is my birthday month (Aug 5, holla holla.) And while I'm not one of those girls who require an entire month of celebrations, I still tend to enjoy the whole month more than others. It's also the month I'm going on vacation which I can't even tell you how much I'm looking forward to. Sad my husband will not be able to come but excited for him to start his new job. At the end of this month, the hubs and I will be celebrating our one year anniversary as well which blows my mind. Do we officially graduate out of "newlyweds" after year one or does it last until year 5 or something? I don't know but I'm definitely looking forward to eating our cake. 

I'm also ok with this year flying by because my husband and I are kind of in limbo with our future. He is trying to figure out what the next step is and it requires a lot of moving pieces which I'm waiting to fall into place. I would be nice to know what the future may resemble but even if we don't get that lucky, we are getting pretty good at this fly-by-the-seat-of-our-pants thing. And that will work until babies. No more flying and lack of plans when babies come. That would kill this mama. Alas, I have completely drifted off into bookish and not so bookish thoughts a la Christine but let's rear it back in to focus on reading goals for this month!

How I Live Now

Currently Read: 
Helter Skelter: Close to finishing off this book but the 800ish pages slowed me down a little. 

Look at that, I actually achieved my goals! It always feels nice to look back and feel good that I stuck with it and even managed to review a big chunk of them before this post. Go me! Now for August: 

Real Books

Got this in my BookRiot monthly box and am super excited to read it. It will be my first Rainbow book and after a couple other bloggers recently reviewed this, I think that if I like this one, I will love her others. Yay!

Even though I didn't really like this movie, I'm really looking forward to reading this. It also nails one of my challenge prompts so win-win.  



Yes, I'm working through my TBR list alphabetically and I have two books of similar names on this month. Adding these books I realize I know almost nothing about most of them. I add them to my TBR for various reasons and just trust myself that I wouldn't have added them if I didn't have a reason at the time. All of these look vaguely familiar and I'm looking forward to them but not entirely sure of the premises. I also decided to include 10 books this month because I'm going on vacation and hoping to get an extremely large amount of reading done (if I have any say in it.) Woo Hoo for new books!!!!