Ultimate Popsugar Reading Challenge discussion

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2016 Weekly checkins > Week 27: 7/1-7/7

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message 1: by Juanita (new)

Juanita (juanitav) | 723 comments Happy Thursday, friends and fellow readers! Happy weekly check-in day!

For this week, I started and finished Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng for "takes place during the summer." This book is our Monthly Group Read and the prompt is our Monthly Challenge prompt.

This book had been on my TBR list having been recommended by a friend a few months back. I didn't have a book slotted for this prompt so it was a great opportunity for me to join the group read and tick off one of my TBRs at the same time.

I really enjoyed this book. I read it in three days (it's under 300 pages so not terribly long). The subject matter is dark as it deals with the death of a teenager and the dysfunctions of a family. I felt the author did a great job handling each.

This puts me at 32/41. Up next for me is Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie , my book club pick for July which I'm slotting for "culture you're unfamiliar with".

Question of the week: What is your favorite genre?

My favorite genres are literary fiction and autobiography/memoir. Ten years ago, it would've been romance. Funny how times change. In my book club, we read a lot of both literary fiction and memoirs. We really love memoirs.

Looking forward to hearing from all of you!

message 2: by Fannie (last edited Jul 07, 2016 07:45AM) (new)

Fannie D'Ascola | 425 comments I enjoy those Thursday check-in post.

Last week I finished two books but only one for that challenge. I read Six degrés de liberté for the book in my home state (Québec). It was good and fast to read. I like when I can relate to the places where the action is happening.

For my bookclub I read O Presságio. I had to read a book from an italian author. It was a fiction story about Nostradamus life. An okay book.

QOTW: My favorite genre is science-fiction. I like all thing space related. I used to read more fantasy and I still like it.

The reason why I like this challenge is because it forces me to read other things and most of the time I am happy with those books.

message 3: by Megan (new)

Megan (mghrt06) | 542 comments 26/41! Moving right along.

This week I completed three books - two for the challenge, one non-challenge book.

I finished The Unexpected Everything. I didn't use this book for the challenge but I should have used it for takes place in the summer because it follows a teenage girl and her summer time job of dog walking with some friendship drama and boy drama. It was a quick, cute read. I recommend.

I finished my YA Best seller with reading This Is Where It Ends. This is a hard one to rate - The subject matter is very serious but I don't really think it was carried out that well. And I could have done with out the tweets she had at the end of every chapter, and I love twitter, but it didn't fit well for me. It also follows four characters who all sounded like - I couldn't easily distinguish who's section I was reading. And I didn't really connect with any of them. Plus not to mention there were so many character names and I couldn't keep track of who is related to who and who is dating (or dated) who...

I also finished my national book award winner by reading Mockingbird. Again, heavy subject matter. But I read this in two days. I liked this one.

Both of these books had school shootings in them. I've never read a school shooting book before and now I read two in one week! No wonder I just looked through my TBR-pile for a light contemporary.

QOTW: What is your favorite genre?
I am still a fan of dystopian novels, young adult (even though I'm approaching 30 years old), psychological thrillers... I agree with Fannie - this challenge made me realize that autobiography aren't that bad and I'm becoming a more diverse reader. If there's another pop sugar challenge next year I'll continue to do it. But, gotta finish this one first!

message 4: by Sara (last edited Jul 07, 2016 11:10AM) (new)

Sara | 1508 comments I am at 35/41. I have read three books this week - two of them fill prompts.

I finished Lily and the Octopus the morning I left the beach to come home. It was a weird read about a guy whose dog develops a mass on her head which he refers to as "the octopus". I liked the conversations between him and his dog, even the ones with the octopus are clever, but then he just dives off the deep end with this epic sea battle against the octopus (all in his head) trying to save his dog which is just a little too weird for me. It is a touching story about the connection between a man and his dog though.

I was very surprised to come home from vacation to find my copy of Heartless had arrived way earlier than expected! I read it in one day. Very, very good. This book completed my book and prequel. I read Alice in Wonderland earlier this year, and Heartless is the story of the Queen of Hearts and how she becomes what she is. Touching, sad and well-imagined.

I also read Everything I Never Told You for the monthly group read - book that takes place in summer. The book was on my TBR list, but I was hesitant because there are so many potential triggers for me when dealing with a child's death. Thankfully, sad as it was, I was able to read through it without too much difficulty. Really well done.

I've been hooked on listening to the Hamilton soundtrack (am I the only one??) and podcasts lately. Without the audiobooks going I am not getting as many books read. I'm trying to get through The Fellowship of the Ring for my 20th century classic. I'm about halfway through but...it's hard to follow!

Question of the Week: My favorite genre is historical fiction. I read probably 90% historical. What can I say? I like history :) Like others have said these challenges have helped me to branch out. I read a lot more YA now than I did a few years ago. Still not a big fan of most nonfiction and science fiction.

message 5: by Thegirlintheafternoon (last edited Jul 07, 2016 06:55PM) (new)

Thegirlintheafternoon I finished 2 books this week (Homegoing and Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe), neither for this challenge. Both were excellent, though!

As far as this challenge goes, I'm holding steady at 31/41. I'm SO close to being finished with Cocaine Blues, which I'm reading for the "murder mystery" prompt. I also started listening to the audiobook of Negroland: A Memoir for the "autobiography" prompt. ETA: Just realized no one is actually murdered in Cocaine Blues, sooooo...

QOTW: Romance all the way!

message 6: by Charlotte (new)

Charlotte Weber | 264 comments I am at 23/41. I finished two books this week. I finally finished Dragonfly in Amber for "first book you see in the bookstore." (Thank you, Outlander season 2!) It took me a while because I was busy but I really enjoyed it.

I also finished "Everything I Never Told You" for the group read. I also had this category wide open so I was up for any suggestion. I tore through this book. There's not a ton of action but there's so much emotional content. I found it sad and thoughtful.

Question of the Week: My favorite genre is YA. I read it so much and I'm over 30 but don't really care. I also love historical fiction. I read a lot about the Tudor period, pioneer times, and World War II. I'm currently reading Winter of the World for my book over 600 pages.

message 7: by Lindi (last edited Jul 07, 2016 04:03PM) (new)

Lindi (lindimarie) I look forward to these Thursday check-ins so much! This week I finished two books for the challenge.

The first one was The Stepford Wives for A book you can finish in a day. I've already seen the movie (bear in mind, the Nichole Kidman version), so I already knew what to expect. Nevertheless this was an enjoyable (creepy) read.

Technically I haven't finished The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up for A self-improvement book, but I expect to tonight! This book is right up my alley, but I don't expect it to be everyone's cup of tea. Some of her suggestions are a little much for the average person, but I'm an aspiring minimalist at heart and I hope this is going to inspire me to start acquiring/buying less stuff.

Question of the week: What is your favorite genre?
If I had to pick just one, it would be anything with some romance! But my other favorites are historical fiction, fiction, classics, non-fiction, biography/memoir.

message 8: by Christophe (new)

Christophe Bonnet | 212 comments Two books read this week, putting me at 46/82.

La demeure des esprits by Tobias Schneebaum 37. A book about a culture you're unfamiliar with (2): Tobias Schneebaum, La demeure des esprits , 10:18, 1994, traduit de l'anglais (éd. orig. 1988).

A ethnographer recount of his stays with the tribes of the marshes of South-Western New Guinea - a culture with whom I don't have the slightest accointance. A bit too self-centered at first, it really grew on me and was actually a pretty good read.

La véritable histoire de Livia qui vécut les dernières heures de Pompéi by claire Laurens 21. A book recommended by a family member: Claire Laurens et Nancy Peña, La véritable histoire de Livia qui vécut les dernières heures de Pompéi , Bayard Poche, 2013.

That book was recommended to me by my nearly 8-years old son, who had purchased it from the local bookstore using city-issued vouchers. After reading it (in one evening) he told me he was willing to let me borrow it, since it was really, really pretty good. And it is, albeit pretty short (a bit more than 40 pages): a story of the last days of Pompei, viewed through the eyes of a fictionnal kid. A bit frightening but not too much, with some sadness obviously but not to the point of putting kids in tears, and some good informational material about both the ancient Rome and volcanoes. A very good choice for kids of 8 to 10 who like reading, as mine does (quote of the day: "in fact, Dad, the problem with loving to read is that I have a hard time doing other things" - story of my life!).

QOTW: I mostly read fiction these days. OTOH a few years ago I barely read anything but historical monographies.

message 9: by Fannie (new)

Fannie D'Ascola | 425 comments Christophe wrote: "Two books read this week, putting me at 46/82.

La demeure des esprits by Tobias Schneebaum37. A book about a culture you're unfamiliar with (2): Tobias Schneebaum, [book:La demeure des esprits|30..."

You convince me to borrow the Livia book for my son. I just look and it is available at my library.

message 10: by Tatra (new)

Tatra | 104 comments It's been so long since I posted here! I have been reading, I just fell I to the hole of not reading the challenge books. Still, I'm at 24/41, so I'm not doing so bad.

Since the last time I've posted, I read Uglies by Scott Westerfeld for my book from the library.

I also read Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell as my book recommended by someone you just met, taking the suggestion from someone in this group and getting it from the library.

And my 24th book was Graceling by Kristin Cashore for my Bestselling YA.

And then after that has been a string of library books, but now I'm going to get back into reading for challenge. :)

As for the question, my favorite genre is fantasy. I love magic and other worlds and the heavy ideas that can be brought up in fantasy.

message 11: by Patricia (new)

Patricia This week I finished One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest for Book Vipers and Things Fall Apart just because. Both great reads! I started my poetry book for this challenge, Modern American Poets, and an autobiography, Hitler's Last Courier, also for this challenge. But it's really slow reading right now. I guess I'm in the Summer Doldrums Slump!
QOTW: My favorite genre has been historical fiction, but it is changing as I read a wider variety of genres!

message 12: by AF (last edited Jul 09, 2016 10:21AM) (new)

AF | 358 comments I just finished The Girl with All the Gifts by M.R. Carey for my book with a teacher (my occupation). I don't usually read this type of book and now I know why. I read the reviews and many said it was a different view point than usual, but I'll not be reading any more books like this again. Not my cup of tea. But now I'm 35/41 so I'm pretty happy about that.

Now I'm starting The Red Heart by James Alexander Thom. It will be my book recommended by a family member. My mom recommended it and a second book, which will be my published in 2016 read. We usually have similar tastes and share books often. I couldn't find this book at my library, which is very unusual, so I ended up buying it. I plan on donating it to the library when I'm done. :)

QotW: I prefer historical fiction, dystopian and any fictional book with a strong female main character. But I will read other types of books for variety.

message 13: by Jessica (new)

Jessica Holbrook (jessicalh08) | 133 comments 21/41 this week!

I finally finished Pride and Prejudice for my book at least 100 years older than me. I enjoyed it a lot, I just wish I could have read it quicker. haha.

I also started Soundless for my book about a culture that you're unfamiliar with.

My favorite genre varies a lot. A like a lot of YA/Light Contemporary Fiction and then I like Historical Fiction a lot as well.

message 14: by Cthulhu (new)

Cthulhu Youth | 1 comments This week I finally finished The Luminaries which I've been working at for months. I read it for the prompt "set on an island" because it's set in New Zealand (technically two islands). I know the writer is very talented, but this book is deliberately obtuse - the first chapter is over 350 pages long - so I think I'm justified in being relieved to have it finished. Having said which, it gets better after the first slog, and the last 100 pages were beautiful and just breezed by.

My favorite genre is literary sci-fi/horror, like Annihilation, Needle in the Groove or anything by Kelly Link.

message 15: by Nadine in NY (new)

Nadine in NY Jones | 7001 comments Mod
I was so busy last weekend with a little 4th of July weekend trip to Montreal that I completely forgot to "check in." Last week I finished two books, neither for the Challenge, so I am still 40/41.

Both books that I finished were very "meh" ... Luckiest Girl Alive, which I don't think could be used for any challenge category (maybe NYT best seller?), and The Well of Ascension, which is book 2 in the Mistborn series, and way too long and boring for an action-packed sci-fi book, and also significantly less interesting than book 1 in the series.

I read Americanah a few months ago! I was going to use it for "set in your home state (NJ)" but when I finished I decided that not enough of it was in NJ to count. I really enjoy everything I've read by her. I hope you like it!

My favorite genre is sci-fi/fantasy, second favorite is romance; I particularly love YA fantasy or dystopian or paranormal sci-fi with angsty romance. My fondness for YA is handy now that my oldest is 13 years old, I can recommend books to her! (And we seem to share the same taste, but of course since she's 13 she is less critical of fluff.)

message 16: by Rachel (new)

Rachel A. (abyssallibrarian) | 626 comments During the week, I read Save Me as my New York Times bestseller, and I started The Deep End of the Ocean as my Oprah's book club book.

I'm actually not sure what my favourite genre is, because I pretty much like anything that is well-written and has characters/a storyline that catches my interest. My favourite author is Jodi Picoult, so I guess whichever genre she falls into?

message 17: by Fannie (new)

Fannie D'Ascola | 425 comments Nadine wrote: "I was so busy last weekend with a little 4th of July weekend trip to Montreal that I completely forgot to "check in." Last week I finished two books, neither for the Challenge, so I am still 40/41...."

Nadine, you were in my hometown. :)

message 18: by Nadine in NY (new)

Nadine in NY Jones | 7001 comments Mod
Fannie wrote: "Nadine wrote: "I was so busy last weekend with a little 4th of July weekend trip to Montreal ..."

Nadine, you were in my hometown. :)

Well we enjoyed our stay!! This was my kids' first trip to another country. My 13 year old has been taking French in middle school this past year and was excited to try out her French - hahaha her teacher really failed her, she didn't know any of the words we needed, and her teacher never taught her how to pronounce the words. But this was probably good motivation for my daughter to study more French in this upcoming year of school. I can bumble along enough to read signs, but my pronunciation very much says "I AM AMERICAN AND ONLY SPEAK ENGLISH" LOL Every time I said "Bonjour!" the other person would immediately switch to English for me. All three of us were VERY envious of all the bilingual people around us.

I think the high points of our visit were (a) discovering that one of the theaters in the Planetarium has BEAN BAGS! holy cow that was comfortable! and (b) Juliette & Chocolat on St Catherine. We went twice. Not only was the chocolate amazing, but the server was wonderful, and he remembered us when we showed up the second time.

message 19: by Fannie (new)

Fannie D'Ascola | 425 comments Nadine wrote: "Fannie wrote: "Nadine wrote: "I was so busy last weekend with a little 4th of July weekend trip to Montreal ..."

Nadine, you were in my hometown. :)

Well we enjoyed our stay!! This was my kids' f..."

It's good to hear that your family liked it here. The good thing is that in Montreal, at least 80% of people speaks english. At our defense, it's easier to learn english than french.

I LOVE the planetarium and their bean bags. I'm going there next week with both my sons. The Mars exploration movie should be good.

message 20: by Nadine in NY (new)

Nadine in NY Jones | 7001 comments Mod
That was what we saw, the video about Mars, and then the one about asteroids in the other, non-beanbag, theater. We really enjoyed it. The English version is done by Sigourney Weaver, and my kids were very excited to recognize her voice from Finding Dory.

message 21: by Gisela (new)

Gisela (giselaelizabeth) Favorite genre...I don't know that I could narrow it down!

Finished in the past week-
We Were Liars (book that takes place on an island)
The Awakened (a romance set in the future)

Still slowly plowing through The Scarlet Letter (for my book I haven't read since high school...and it is just as rough today as it was 20+ years ago!) and also We Wish to Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed With Our Families (book about a culture you're unfamiliar with...deals with the Rwandan genocide in 1994).

Just started 11/22/63, and I am loving it so far!

Completed 20/41 for the challenge, but I have read 40 so far this year and I am sure there are several that can fit in some of the other categories.

message 22: by Jillian (new)

Jillian | 0 comments I did not care for The Scarlet Letter when I read it in high school. It is one I plan to someday reread and see if I like it better but it keeps getting pushed to the bottom of my TRL.

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