6/30/17

June Wrap-up!

The year is already halfway gone.  I'm normally a glass full kind of gal, but with time I have to look at the year as halfway behind us already... SLOW DOWN TIME.

The Books

Books Read: 6 (Lord of Shadows, The Handmaid's Tale, The Best of Adam Sharp, Burn, Heir of Fire, The Girl at Midnight)
I really took my time with Lord of Shadows and loved every minute.  My review for Adam Sharp is forthcoming, and will explain why it also took me a long time to read, despite it being a short-ish book.  AND I FINALLY READ BURN. #lifegoal  Also, I read all five books on my spring TBR!!!!

Books Acquired: 5 (The Best of Adam Sharp, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, Once and for All, The Ministry of Utmost Happiness, The Life Intended)
No regrets.  No regrets at all.

The Challenges

Prequel & Sequel Challenge: +16 (Lord of Shadows, Burn and Heir of Fire)
TBR Challenge: +2 (Burn and The Girl at Midnight)
Flights of Fantasy: +2 (Lord of Shadows and Heir of Fire)

The Blog

I'm sloooooowly getting back into the swing of blogging, and have my sights set on mid-July when my course is done and I'll have two glorious homework-free months!  I did a second round of the Mid Year Book Freak Out Tag and shared my summer TBR.  This week, I looked back at my reading resolutions and reading challenges to see where I was at.

 The Other Stuff

Summer has definitely arrived in British Columbia, and we celebrated Father's Day by purchasing our first "grown-up" BBQ (i.e. the first time that we haven't bought the cheapest one that we could find, knowing that we'd buy another in a year or two).  We have a natural gas hook-up on our deck, so it's also nice to BBQ without worrying that we'll run out of propane.  My husband LOVED making a BBQ feast for us for Father's Day, and we've also had some friends over to enjoy some yummy BBQ. This weekend, one of my best friends is coming to stay for the weekend and I'm already looking forward to more yummy BBQ as well as finding some Canada Day celebrations to enjoy.

Otherwise, it was a fairly quiet month.  I'm finishing up my course in mid-July, and already looking forward to some blissful time off.  We're Alberta-bound in August for some family time as well, and I can already see myself lounging on my mother-in-law's deck with a good book and a cup of tea.

How about you?  Anything exciting happen to you in June?  Let me know if you've read something amazing so far this year and which books are on your summer TBR!  Thank you for stopping by =)

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6/28/17

Reading Resolutions - Halfway Point

I like looking back at my resolutions halfway through the year to see where I'm at ... I'm doing well, but still a ways to go.  Let's break it down...

1. Reduce my physical TBR to less than 100 books.
Although I didn't have a specific number at the beginning of the year, I guesstimated that I had approximately 130 unread books on my shelves.  Today, I have 122 books.  I have been reading most books from my shelves, but there were also a lot of new releases to buy this year (plus others that have wandered onto my shelves).  The remainder of the year doesn't have as many new releases, so this challenge still feels achievable.

2. Reduce my e-book TBR to less than 20 books.
I've been really good about not buying too many cheap e-books this year, and knocked off quite a few short reads in March, but I'm still sitting at 27 books.  I usually pack one book and my Kobo when we head to Alberta in the summer, so hopefully I'll gobble up a few e-books under the prairie skies.

3. Finish 10 series.
I've finished two of the 10 series that were on my original list, but I also binge read the entire Darker Shade of Magic trilogy, so I'm counting that one as well.  Still a ways to go on this challenge, but I'm hoping to focus on series over the summer.

4. Blog whenever hubby plays video games.
Well, hubby promptly stopped gaming after I posted my new year's resolutions!  There has been a LOT of hockey on this year, as my husband's beloved Oilers made the playoffs this year.  I've been popping in my earbuds and listening to Peaceful Piano on Spotify, and have been doing well at tuning out the hockey and getting some reading done.  I've also taken a couple of non-intentional breaks from blogging -- I think I was burning out a little with blogging.  I'm coming up on six years in November and, although I do still love my little corner of the internet, I've been having a blogging identity crisis.  Hopefully, I'll have a post soon detailing exactly what that is and what it entails, but I haven't quite decided just yet.

5. Participate in three online events.
This is a success already!  I participated in the Love-a-Thon, the All the Short Ones readathon and the third round of Tome Topple.  YAHOO!  In the remainder of the year, there will hopefully be a second round of Tome Topple and my favourite event of all, the Broke & Bookish Secret Santa.

Did you making reading resolutions and, if so, are you on track with your goals?  Let me know in the comments below, and thank you for stopping by =)

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6/26/17

Reading Challenges - Halfway Point

To start with, I set my Goodreads reading challenge at 50 books, despite the fact that I read 73 books last year.  So far, I've read 42 books.  I've enjoyed taking my time with a few chunky reads, and setting my target lower has really helped with that.  Plus, participating in the All the Short Ones Readathon in March helped to rack up the read books quickly, and then I slowed right down in April with Tome Topple.


My goal is 30 books, and I've read 15 books so far.  There have definitely been quite a few ARCs read this year, as well as some library books, but having my books out of storage has been great, and I've read a lot of books off my shelves so far too!

My goal for the Prequel & Sequel Challenge is Professional (76 to 100 points).  I thought I was super behind on this challenge, but I'm actually at 66 points already!  I've completed four series already, which I think is definitely helping.  If I manage to knock a couple more off my TBR pile, I'll complete this challenge with no issues.


My goal is 12 books and I've read 13 books so far!  I've been really, really enjoying the fantasy books that I've read this year, and am already looking forward to reading some more before the year is up.  CHALLENGE COMPLETED!

How about you?  How are you doing on your reading challenges so far this year?

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6/20/17

Summer TBR!

I also had one book from my spring list that I didn't get to (The Girl at Midnight) and I'm currently reading Burn, but will complete it soon.  Our summer weather has been all over the place (hot and sunny one day, cold and rainy the next) so my reading tastes are a bit all over the map.  Even if I don't read these precise books, my focus this summer will be on the books that I had originally planned to read this year, with a specific focus on series.

1. A Man Called Ove by Frederik Backman
Out of all of the books on my Kobo, this book has been calling to me lately.  It's on the list of 17 books that I had planned to read this year.

2. The Gammage Cup by Carol Kendall
I tried to read this a month or so ago, but put it aside.  I'm not 100% sure that I'll enjoy this, so I may end up DNFing it, but I have to give it a try this summer.

3. Opal by Jennifer L. Armentrout
This is the next in a series on my TBR, but I think it would be an easy, summery read.

4. Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts
I have a plan for reading this book in bite size chunks throughout July.  I'll write a full length post on this at some point, but this strategy has been working well for motivating me to read intimidating books lately.

5. ARCs
Another of my big (and lofty) summer goals is to catch up with my ARCs.  I have two books that I have read and not reviewed, one that I'm about to finish, and one long-expired ARC that I still haven't read.  I also have six fall e-galleys to read.  At the bare minimum, I would like to catch up with my ARCs, but it would also be lovely to read ahead.  I've got big dreams.

How about you?  What's on your summer TBR?  Let me know in the comments below =)

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6/16/17

Mid Year Book Freak Out Tag - Round 2

I did this tag last year, and saw it popping up all over BookTube again, so thought I'd join in the fun with a 2017 version!  The tag was originally created by ReadLikeWildfire (see her video here) and Ely Jane (see her video here).

1. Best book you’ve read so far in 2017. 
Everyone's going to say this, so I'm going to pick the two most popular answers to this question: A Court of Wings and Ruin and A Conjuring of Light.  There, I said it; however, they're both just PERFECT SERIES ENDERS.  PURE PERFECTION.

2. Best sequel you've read so far in 2017.
Ha ha ha, see above!  Clearly I should have read the questions through first before I started answering.

3. New release you haven't read yet, but want to.

I still have The Names They Gave Us, Once and For All, Strange the Dreamer, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, The Ministry of Utmost Happiness and Always and Forever, Lara Jean to read!  This time last year, I only had one unread new release ... umm, OOPS?

4. Most anticipated release for the second half of the year.

The Language of Thorns by Leigh Bardugo in September.  I'm also excited for Renegades by Marissa Meyer and Warcross by Marie Lu, but I'm not a fan of the covers for both books, which has reduced my enthusiasm for both.  Of course, there's also Tower of Dawn by Sarah J. Maas but I haven't read Empire of Storms yet (I know, I know!) so that's also reduced my enthusiasm.

5. Biggest disappointment.

The Bane Chronicles.  I love Magnus Bane's character, but this series of novellas about his character was just meh.  It made a mindless project at work a little more bearable with this book on audio, but other than that I was very underwhelmed.

6. Biggest surprise.

The Hate U Give.  As soon as I saw that Jamie @ The Perpetula Page-Turner had loved it, I downloaded an e-galley.  I knew that I would love it too, but the surprise for me was that I loved it that much.  It blew me away.

7. Favourite new author. (Debut or new to you)

V.E. Schwab.  I DEVOURED the Darker Shades of Magic series.  Absolutely DEVOURED.  I loved it so much that I'm tempted to try This Savage Song.  The premise sounds intriguing, but I've heard others say that the either love her adult books, or her young adult books, but people rarely love both.  So I think I might just stick with her adult books.  BUT I loved the series so much that I also wonder if I might be part of the small group that loves all of her books.  So conflicted.

8. Newest fictional crush.

I'm not much of a book boyfriend kind of girl, so can I just pick Rhysand again this year?

9. Newest favourite character.

Lila Bard.  Hands down, no question.

10. Book that made you cry.
LORD OF SHADOWS.  It's been two weeks since I finished that book, and I'm still not okay.

11. Book that made you happy.
Although graphic novels aren't my favourite thing, it did make me happy to have a little bit more time in the Lunar Chronicles' world.  And Iko.  More Iko is happiness inducing.

12. Most beautiful book you've bought so far this year (or received)
Strange the Dreamer.  Maybe because I also know that Laini's beautiful writing awaits inside those gorgeous covers.

13. What books do you need to read by the end of the year?
OH MY GOSH.  So many.  In order to finish the 17 books that I had planned to read, I still need to read The bone Season, Empire of Storms, Unraveling, Burn, Graceling, Shataram, The Girl at Midnight, A Man Called Ove, The Gammage Cup, Robber Bride and a Brandon Sanderson book.  And I've only read two of the ten series that I had planned to read this year, which still leaves the Lux series, the Throne of Glass series, the Magyk series, the Unwind dystology, the Everneath trilogy, the All Souls Trilogy, His Dark Assassins trilogy and the Pure trilogy.  I'm currently reading Burn, which will knock one of each list (hurrah!)  But that would still leave a total of 31 books to read!  Considering I've already read 41 books, it's possible!

Although the questions don't actually ask me to tag anyone, I'm gonna do it anyways, because I'm crazy like that.  I tag Jessica @ Novel Cravings and Lauren @ Lose Time Reading.

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