Ultimate Popsugar Reading Challenge discussion

2017 Weekly checkins > Week 41: 10/6 – 10/12

Comments Showing 1-50 of 65 (65 new)    post a comment »
« previous 1

message 1: by Sara (new)

Sara | 1508 comments Happy Thursday everyone! We have seen a resurgence of summer weather here lately (including a couple of humid days). Next week the temperatures drop a little again.

Books finished:

Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier – A reread for me

Castle of Water by Dane Huckelbridge – this book was SOOOOOOOO good! Two strangers get stranded
on a small island near Tahiti. As time goes on they learn to depend on each other and find ways to use their individual talents to make the best of their situation. It took a couple chapters to get into it, but once it picked up I flew through it in an afternoon. I’m making the decision to count this as survival fiction (a subgenre I hadn’t heard of). Technically it isn’t on any lists of survival fiction (I think it’s because it is so new and most of the lists are older), but it meets the definition! And that completes the advanced list for me!

I have 4 books left on the regular list so that puts me at 48/52

Currently reading:

Dreamland Burning by Jennifer Latham

The Enchanted April by Elizabeth Von Arnim – I’ve started and stopped this book a few times. Not loving it, BUT it does have a month in the title!

Question of the week:

If you are still working on your challenge, which prompt are you least looking forward to?

I was going to say the pseudonym prompt, but I did some searching yesterday and found a light chick lit book that should work. I need something light right now!

I guess that leaves me with a book bought on a trip. Still haven't chosen a book for that.

message 2: by Heidi (last edited Oct 12, 2017 04:10AM) (new)

Heidi | 15 comments Currently reading:
Monument 14
The Rules of Work: The Unspoken Truth about Getting Ahead in Business

If you are still working on your challenge, which prompt are you least looking forward to?

The one I am struggling through right now. A book with career advice.

50/52 complete

message 3: by Nadine (new)

Nadine Jones | 5594 comments Mod
Happy Thursday!!! Here in central NY it's been cool and rainy, very much fall weather. And we have gotten SO MUCH rain this year.

The cover of Castle of Water is so pretty! The blurb doesn't make it sound interesting, but your description does.

I finished three books this week (and they all happen to be 2017 publications, so they'd all work for that category)

Norse Mythology audiobook by Neil Gaiman - Exactly what it says it is. If you're interested in Norse mythology, you can't go wrong here. Obviously this would work for "based on mythology" or "mythical creature."

Warcross the new YA from Marie Lu - I LOVED her first series but hated her second series, so I didn't know what to expect with this one. I LOVED it. It is fluffy and ridiculous and very much "YA" and it was so much fun and I devoured it. This would work for author of color, first book in a series, or, if you are not of Chinese or Japanese descent, main character who is different ethnicity. There is a key supporting character in a wheelchair, but he's not the main character so I don't count this for "disability."

Stay with Me by Ayobami Adebayo - absolutely heart-breaking debut, set in Nigeria. This one would check off: difficult topic, two time periods, author of color, and character is a different ethnicity (if you are not Nigerian - I can't remember now if the characters are Yoruba or Ibo, if you want to file it down to specific ethnicity).

QOTW I'm done with the challenge, and I did all the prompts I didn't like at the beginning to get them out of the way, so after a short while I was able to pretty much do the challenge without anything I wasn't looking forward to. Probably the last prompt I wasn't looking forward to was "lifespan" - I just don't read the kind of books that go from birth to death. But there were several that I wasn't thrilled with!! 800 page, career advice, bought on a trip ... all tough categories for me to fill. I bent "used book store" to mean "bought a used book at the library." And I still feel like I cheated with career advice, but it's done and that's that.

message 4: by Tara (new)

Tara Bates | 1008 comments I'm resigned to the fact I am not going to finish on time :( I read too many non prompt books. Fortunately it means I'll still likely finish my overall reading goal, just not all the prompts. I didn't finish or even read much this week, I'm in a super slump :(

QOTW both of the ones about genre or sub genre because I am just not interested in searching for something I'm interested in in a new genre. And the story within a story not because I'm not interested but because I don't really like prompts that I can't google for ideas.

message 5: by Megan (new)

Megan (mghrt06) | 539 comments I only finished one little novella this week Keeping Her which is my letter K that I was needing for the A-Z Challenge.

I also reread Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. I'm 83% through but I just could not stay up last night to finish in time for the check in.

I'm still at 35/40 and 10/12. I don't have much planned for the weekend so hopefully I can read a lot.

QOTW I'm not looking forward to steampunk but I have a book picked out for it at least.

message 6: by Fannie (new)

Fannie D'Ascola | 414 comments Bonjour,

It's cold here today, 0°C in the morning.

I'm in a reading slump right now. Still reading Revelation Space for more than 2 weeks now. It's good, I have plenty of time to read when I am communting to work, but I just don't feel like reading. It will fill no prompt.

QOTW: I have 3 prompts left and the one I look least forward to is the food one. I know they have Seconds at my Library so I'll give this book a go.

message 7: by Sara (new)

Sara | 1508 comments Nadine wrote: "The cover of Castle of Water is so pretty! The blurb doesn't make it sound interesting, but your description does."

It's one of those books where the less you try to describe it the better off you are! It's such a fantastic book!

message 8: by Christine (new)

Christine McCann | 461 comments It's hot and incredibly muggy, and I'm in total denial. I sit in my air-conditioned buildings and wear cozy sweatshirts and slippers and drink tea. I'm also doing some major Halloween decoration on the house so that helps keep me in a fall mood.

Nadine wrote: "Norse Mythology audiobook by Neil Gaiman - Exactly what it says it is. If you're interested in Norse mythology, you can't go wrong here. Obviously this would work for "based on mythology" or "mythical creature.""
Where did you ultimately land on the narration? I usually like Neil Gaiman's reading, but if it's too "here's a bedtime story, children" I might just read the book myself.

Finished this week:

Warcross - it had its moments but fell a little flat for me. I think it would make a better movie than a book. This was my espionage book.

Men at Arms - I read this for fun, then realized I could use for "an eccentric character" (and then some!). I loved it. I'm going to read all the City Watch books now.

Aaaand that made me realize I could tick a few Advanced Challenge boxes just by happenstance:

The White People and Other Weird Stories for a book recommended by an author I love (H.P. Lovecraft)

Dracula for a book based on mythology.

And that puts me at 37/40, with three bonus advanced items!

Currently reading:

The Curse of the Blue Figurine (book I loved as a child)

A Night in the Lonesome October (book with a month or day of the week in the title) - making this one last!


The espionage title really gave me trouble, since that's not my usual jam. Also weirdly a book with a season in the title was rough, mostly because I chose a book that I turned out not to like, and really tried to get through it rather than chucking it early.

But my three remaining prompts I'm a-OK with! (Yes as a child I would eat my vegetables first and then save dessert for last.)

message 9: by Nicole (last edited Oct 12, 2017 06:57AM) (new)

Nicole Sterling | 153 comments Hello, all! It went from summer to definitely fall to summer again in the span of a week here in Oklahoma. I think next week, it's supposed to be back in the 60s for the high, so that will be nice.

I really didn't get much accomplished this week. I actually did quite a bit of reading, but I only finished one book and started another. I'm still reading the others I was reading last week.

As Time Goes By by Mary Higgins Clark

Still Reading
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling. We are sooooo close to being finished with this one (at 91%, according to GR), but we are going out of town for the weekend (college football rivalry game - can't miss it!) and it's not a relaxing, down-time sort of weekend, so we may not even get to read it again until Sunday evening.

Quidditch Through the Ages by Kennilworthy Whisp (J.K. Rowling). We're just reading this when we have a little time to read, but not enough time for the next GOF chapter, so even though it's super short, we've been reading it for over a week.

The Yes Brain: How to Cultivate Courage, Curiosity, and Resilience in Your Child by Daniel J. Siegel. This is an ARC I've had for over 3 months now, and I'm interested in it, but I'm just not much of a scientific non-fiction fan, so it's taking me a while to work my way through it.

Started Reading
Evergreen Falls by Kimberley Freeman. This is one I got from the library when I got the MHC book above, and they're due back on Monday, so I'm trying to really hurry through it so I can finish it before I have to take it back. I may have to extend my loan, but it's a good book & I'd rather finish it so I can see what happens.

I have finished the challenge already, but I definitely wasn't looking forward to the career advice prompt, the steampunk prompt, or the mythology/mythological creature prompts. None of those are things I'm interested in, and I really had to force myself to just get through them, knowing that I had better prompts waiting once I finished those.

I do the same thing as a lot of you, and get my "yuck" prompts over with earlier, making sure to save better prompts for later. The last book I read for the challenge was the one I was most looking forward to reading (The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer), and I set it up that way on purpose. So glad that turned out the way I hope it would & that I love the book! :)

message 10: by Nadine (new)

Nadine Jones | 5594 comments Mod
Unauthorized Cinnamon wrote: "Where did you ultimately land on the narration? I usually like Neil Gaiman's reading, but if it's too "here's a bedtime story, children" I might just read the book myself."

It was okay! Either he stopped sounding like a Kindergarten teacher, or I got used to it, because it stopped bothering me. Also, since these stories were originally an oral tradition, and Gaiman's kept that spirit, this worked really well as an audiobook. AND some of those names would be impossible for me to pronounce, so I was glad to hear them! :-)

message 11: by Naina (last edited Oct 12, 2017 07:14AM) (new)

Naina (naynay55) | 113 comments Hi all! Happy Thursday!

Got a little bit of reading done this week, so I'm feeling optimistic though I'm still a little behind. Hopefully, I can make up some ground this weekend, which should be pretty relaxing.


- We Are Never Meeting In Real Life - book with a cat on the cover. This collection of essays was incredible - so self-deprecating, real, authentic. I loved every bit of these and can't wait to read Samantha Irby's future work.

- Station Eleven - book set in two different time periods. I devoured this book over the course of a day. I just could not put it down!! Such a thought-provoking story told in a magnificent way. I grew fond of several of the characters and loved the creative way the story was told. One of my favorite books from this challenge.

- Slade House - book recommended by an author you love (Gillian Flynn). A unique ghost-story by David Mitchell that really put me in the October/Halloween/Friday the 13th mood. I enjoyed this and it was a quick read. Chapter 4 was by far my favorite.

This brings me to 25/40 for the regular challenge, 9/12 for the advanced, with a total of 33/52. I think that if I can keep up reading 2-3 books a week, I should be able to complete the challenge by the end of December, if not sooner. I'm just one of those people who can't read/listen to multiple books concurrently, and starting the challenge late this year (I learned about it in July) probably didn't help me either.

Currently Reading:

- Daughters of the Dragon - book involving travel. A woman who was adopted as a baby in America travels to Korea to learn about her birth mother and hears the story of her grandmother, a Korean woman classified as a "comfort woman" during the Japanese occupation of Korea during WWII. I had never heard of "comfort women" and this story is incredibly heart-breaking and shocking so far, but I'm also appreciative of learning about this side of history and of the resilience of so many women. This book could probably also fit many other prompts (book set in wartime, book where the main character is a different ethnicity, a book about a difficult topic, etc.).


I think that I have books selected for most of my remaining prompts, but I'm having a hard time finding a book that I think I'll enjoy for the genre/subgenre you've never heard of advanced prompt.

message 12: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca Kiefer | 118 comments Hello from Cleveland. We finally got some rain, and it's a little cooler now. I could still do for some more fall-like weather, though.

No new books this week. I am challenging myself to read All Quiet on the Western Front in the original German. It's not nearly as hard as I feared (I'm definitely missing some details, but I always know what's going on and what I'm supposed to "get" out of it), but it is intimidating to pick up! I read German at about half the speed I read English, so it's hard to make half the progress I'm used to in an evening. I have a long weekend, and I'm determined to finish it by Sunday! (It also doesn't help I'm alternating it with House of Leaves. I need something light and straight-forward next!)

QOTW: I'm planning to read another book in German, Der Federmann, for a book bought on a trip. It's a crime thriller, so while I'll need a break between German books, hopefully it should be a lot easier to read and faster-paced! I picked out Cloud Atlas for a story within a story, and I tried the audiobook and felt so confused. I might try again with the narration slowed down, since it felt super fast compared to normal, or pick up a physical copy. I'm starting to feel really stressed about finishing all my challenges, but I'm hoping to make a lot of headway this weekend.

message 13: by Kristel (new)

Kristel (kristelmedinamd) | 49 comments Hi everyone, from sunny Arequipa Peru!! I'm sorry I haven't been checking in but this last month has been tough. I've kept on reading though!!! So I think I will be able to finish the challenge on time.

This week I've finished 3 books:
It by Stephen King, this was my first SK book and I really liked it. I'm using it for the book with more than 900 pages prompt. I am really looking forward to reading more from him.

Daughter of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor, for the prompt "a book with a family member on the title". Tbh I've been trying to introduce this one to my immediate TBR for a long time and once I realized I could read it for this prompt I was so happy, it was so obvious!!! Anyway, I loved it and I can't wait to follow this series ASAP.

The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion for the book with an eccentric character prompt. It was good and funny, a really quick read.

That brings me to 38/52. I think I can read 14 books in what's left of the year. I will prevail!!!

QOTW: I am struggling with the audiobook prompt because it would be my first time. It is really difficult for me because I think it would be sooo weird to do it. Anyway, it's just in my head I guess.

message 14: by Heather (new)

Heather (heathergrace) | 94 comments Good morning! It was raining and warm early this week and now it's rainy and a bit chilly... more what I expect from a Mid-Atlantic fall. I'm taking Sunday as a reading day.

Big Little Lies. A coworker recommended this and I brought it to the beach last weekend... definitely an excellent beach read and I knew no spoilers (haven't watched the show) so the twists were great.

Currently reading:
The Invisible Library. This is my steampunk book and it was recommended by a friend months and months ago. I'm seriously enjoying it!

A week ago I would have said the steampunk item but that's going swimmingly. Like someone else, I tried to get the ones I was dreading out of the way sooner rather than later and have 9 left of 52 after this one and I have something in mind for all of them.

Thegirlintheafternoon Hello everyone! I knocked out two more Popsugar prompts this week, bringing me to 36/40 tasks completed!


- Island of the Blue Dolphins - This was a sub-in for the "book you loved as a child" prompt. What a gorgeous book! I'm so glad I went back to it.
- El Deafo - This was aanother sub-in for the "book that's been on your TBR way too long" prompt. I enjoyed it, overall - the art was very cute.
- Flight - A masterpiece with a fantastic performance by actor Adam Beach, but absolutely devastating. I used this for Around-the-Year's prompt of "a time-travel book."
- You Need a Budget: The Proven System for Breaking the Paycheck-To-Paycheck Cycle, Getting Out of Debt, and Living the Life You Want - Not for a challenge, but an enjoyable read if you're into personal finance.

In Progress

I'm currently reading Crazy Rich Asians (very fun but I'm not in any rush to finish it) and The Secret History (loving this so far - wish I had more time to devote to it!) and listening to the audiobook of Canada (I'm enjoying the parts focused on Canadian culture but getting bored by Myers' description of his turn to improv).


- The Talented Ribkins - This was a solid family drama, but I picked it up because I thought it was going to be more focused on the superhero aspects. I could see going back to it in the future, but it wasn't a good fit right now.


I'm not really dreading any of them, but I suppose I'm least excited for the nonhuman perspective prompt. I'm planning on reading The Bees, which I know several members of this group loved, so hopefully I'll enjoy it!

message 16: by Brooke (new)

Brooke | 273 comments Hello everyone and happy birthday to me! I started the celebration last weekend by spending an entire morning reading in bed, then traveling to Houston to visit my brother and go to the NFL Sunday Night Football game. This week, though, was another business trip, including a meeting with my worst client this morning. Ugh. But after that it is back to celebration mode for the next 10 days. (As you can tell, I celebrate a birthday month, not day. )

This week I finished:
The Color Purple by Alice Walker. What a powerful book. I switched between hard copy and audio, and I highly recommend the audio, read by Walker herself.

Death on the Nile by Agatha Christie. This was typical Christie, with a slew of characters and a lot of misdirection before finding out who did it at the very end. I figured everything out about halfway through the story, but with all of the red herrings, etc I doubted myself. I enjoyed it.

Every Last Lie by Mary Kubica. Not one of my favorites. I didn’t feel compelled to like any of the characters, and I found it hard to believe the couple was so in love based on all of the secrets.

I am currently reading:
Theft by Finding: Diaries 1977-2002 by David Sedaris. Still plugging along, but because I have a physical copy and am traveling so much, I'm just reading a bit each day that I am home. I will probably finish this one at the end of October.

It by Stephen King for the 600+ page prompt. Mostly doing this on audio while driving. It is 45 hours, so it will take me a few weeks, but I’m enjoying it! Steven Weber is the narrator, and he is doing a fabulous job.

QOTW: I’m actually working on the one I was dreading – the long prompt. I usually read a few each year, but for some reason when I see the prompt in print it makes me nervous. Silly, I guess. After that I have just a handful of prompts left, mostly because I keep getting distracted by other books. I will finish though!!!

message 17: by Cheri (new)

Cheri (jovali2) | 242 comments Hi, everyone! It's kind of sad here with smoky skies and ash from the forest fires in the wine country. We are not directly threatened here in San Francisco, but the news from just north of us is devastating.

I finished two books this week and made progress on two others:

Hag-Seed. This is an incredibly creative retelling of The Tempest. I was totally absorbed in it! Part-way through I realized the book had a red spine, so I'm using it for that. :)

Ella Minnow Pea: A Novel in Letters. I read this when it first came out and loved it, so this was a reread. I had already filled the book in letters slot; this was for another challenge.

When They Severed Earth from Sky: How the Human Mind Shapes Myth. I'm about 1/3 through this for the mythology prompt. It's the third book I've read by Elizabeth Wayland Barber this year -- I love her writing!

Nine Parts of Desire: The Hidden World of Islamic Women. I'm about 2/3 done with this for another challenge and it's quite interesting. The author, Geraldine Brooks, was a journalist in the middle east in the 90s and the book is based both on research and personal experiences.

Question of the Week
Fortunately I've finished the ones I was least interested in. I always spend a long time looking for those and try to use a wide interpretation to find something that fits the challenge but also fits me. :) I only have two prompts I haven't started yet and I know what I'm reading for one of them. I still have to choose something written by someone I admire. I have some thoughts but just haven't gotten excited about anything yet.

message 18: by Claire (new)

Claire (fletchasketch) Good morning! I have missed checking in on these threads for a few weeks.

We were having a beautiful late summer in San Francisco, but it's been very smoky and ashy this week from the North Bay fires. Of course that's nothing compared to what they're going through up there - it's so awful and the fires are still not under control.

I finished one book this week and actually it was the book I was least looking forward to - steampunk - but in the end I really enjoyed it. I read The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage: The (Mostly) True Story of the First Computer and once I got into the swing of things, it was great.

I'm now reading Lab Girl for my book by an interesting woman, and really enjoying it.

I'm at 26/40 and 3/12 and I'm reconciling myself to the fact that I probably won't finish the whole challenge. For now I'm focusing on finishing the main challenge.

QOTW - I was really struggling to fill the 'book with a cat on the cover', but thanks to you clever people I now have We Are Never Meeting In Real Life on hold at the library and I can't wait, because I've heard such good things on this thread!

message 19: by Ashley (new)

Ashley | 159 comments Hey Everyone,

It's feeling like fall today (and yesterday) in my neck of the woods but it seems as though the temp is going to be going back up starting tomorrow for the next few days. I wish it would just stay fall.

I only have three prompts left for the challenge!! So, I'm currently at 37/40.


There's Someone Inside Your House just for fun and it was fun. It reminded me a lot of Scream (different stories but same feel).

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War for a book of letters. I ended up switching over to the audiobook for this, since it has a full cast and really enjoyed it.

Currently Reading:

Misery for a book that's been on your TBR list for way too long. I haven't made a ton of progress on this one yet but I'm hoping to really dig in this weekend and get it finished.

I don't have a prompt left that I'm not interested in but the espionage one was tough but I listened to the audiobook of Argo and actually really enjoyed it. I didn't like the prompt with a day of the week in the title but that's because I didn't like the book.

message 20: by Dani (new)

Dani Weyand | 289 comments Hello from Columbus! It's starting to kind of feel like autumn. Actually, it's just damp and overcast but at least I'm not sweating. I'm almost done! I've actually finished the main challenge, I just have two titles left in the advance challenge that I'm currently working on.

In Cold Blood was my a book I bought on a trip. A friend reminded me that I picked up my copy the last time we were in Pittsburgh, I was starting to wonder what I'd do since I haven't left Columbus at all this year lol. Anywho. I've read this before. I still love it. I love the idea of a nonfiction novel, I think it really cemented the lives of the Clutter into our societies thoughts, and I don't see this book being forgotten anytime soon. I love Capote's righting style. And Capote. And then it all got me thinking about how much I miss Philip Seymour Hoffman. I had a very emotional week lol.

Seabiscuit: An American Legend is for my sports pick in the book riot challenge. I still have a little bit left but I'll be done with it by the time I get home today. I loved the Seabiscuit movie, and the book is very interesting. It paints a picture of the culture that uplifted Seabicuit to such a legendary status.

So that brings me to 40/40; 10/12.

QOTW: I'm working on my book recommended by an author I admire, The Executioner's Song. I'm so daunted by its length and annoyed that there's no audiobook version available. I don't want to say it's boring, but it's kind of slow and I wish things would start happening. I've heard great things about this book, but man it's probably going to take me until the end of December to finish it. But there weren't any prompts that I didn't look forward to just based on the prompt alone. I think I found an interesting title for each.

message 21: by Yvonne (last edited Oct 12, 2017 10:54AM) (new)

Yvonne | 40 comments Hey guys! We finally get a little taste of fall around here (and yes I have been complaining about the cold morning temperatures...lol) only to have it snatched away again. We are supposed to be back up in the 90s again for the next few days. Why can't it just stay the nice cool blanket-hot tea-book weather? Anyways, I had a bit of a slow down in the reading department this week. I only finished one book. But in my defense it was well over 700 pages and I kept going back and forth between it and another book that I ultimately DNF'ed.

The Fireman by Joe Hill - a bestseller in a genre you don't normally read
This was one of those books that I had started multiple times and just couldn't get past about a quarterway through. This time though, one of my goodreads groups was group reading it and I finally finished it this morning. I don't know if I was letting bad reviews cloud my judgement or if I just was never in the mood for this book, but it was a heck of a lot better than I was expecting it to be.

Current and Future Reads:
I have a readathon coming up next week, #spookathon, and unfortunately only one of those books will fit my left over prompts.
All Is Not Forgotten by Wendy Walker - a book recommended by an author you love, Karin Slaughter

Current Stats:
35/40 regular challenge
10/12 advanced challenge

The main prompt I am dreading the most is a book you bought on a trip. I never go on trips and if I did, I would probably not buy any books unless it was a city known for its bookstores. I will probably cheat a little and a use a book I bought on a specific "trip" to the bookstore last Christmas

message 22: by Theresa (new)

Theresa | 1658 comments I am finally reading my last challenge book: Hunger’s Brides: A Novel of the Baroque as my book over 800 pages (1300+). And you might say it is my QOTW prompt. For some reason I was bogged down finding a book for this prompt that I had not already read or fell just short in page count. This book though has been demanding my attention since the challenge list came out, so clearly it was meant to be. Enjoying so far but a slow read.

Did have 2 non-prompt finishes but they both fill prompts if anyone needs one:
The Hate U Give - thank you thank you thank you to all of you who read and recommended this book! I would not have discovered and read it without all of you. I echo everything you all said and add that the author made some great choices in her writing that added depth and complexity while keeping it accessible. Loved Starr and her family and friends, I would know them anywhere. Loved this book and it will live with me. Fits lots of prompts if you need it to, especially the difficult subject, which was handled extremely well here. I have used it for the 2015 challenge prompt 'book set in high school'.

Snow Crash- did not love this one. Originally planned on this being my unfamiliar genre/subgenre book (cyberpunk sci fi), but I read something else before my library hold came up. Still wanted to read it though, and it filled the 2015 sci fi prompt. I came very close to abandonning it after the first few chapters. I found the writing pretentious and adolescent at the same time, too heavy on the purple prose and made up slang (or not so made up - it is set in the world of hacking which is unfamiliar to me). But that eased or I got used to ut, and once Y.T. was introduced, I was caught. There were many tedious sections that could have been excised IMHO (those long lectures on Sumerian mythology which ended up being summarized at the end very nicely - we just needed the summary). Published in 1992, it is also badly dated. But I adored Y.T. - and how great is it that a male author created such an amazing 15 year old heroine who is smart, strong, and confident?! Appreciated also on many levels his virus plot connections - won't say more because it would spoil the plot. So a mixed review from me, and glad I finished it.

I also started a book from my ebook stash with a title starting with the letter 'Q' - The Quiet Game - which will be my 'relief' reading from Hunger's Brides, or when lighting too poor and I need the lit screen to read. I think it also will fit a ptomot on 2015 challenge - book more than 500 pages.

message 23: by Chinook (new)

Chinook | 731 comments Snow on Monday, shorts and a t-shirt on Wednesday Colorado can’t decide what season it is.

I’ve had a slow reading week. Between cleaning and cooking for Canadian Thanksgiving and then the ATY list coming out, I’ve been distracted. Tonight is usually a big reading night for me but we’re going to a Harry Potter Trivia event at a brewery instead.

I got through two audiobooks, You Can't Touch My Hair: And Other Things I Still Have to Explain and The Lightning Thief, both of which I enjoyed a lot. I had previously had a hard time getting into Percy Jackson, but once my hold came around again I must have been in the right place for it.

I read Last Stop on Market Street with Kait but that was the only book I actually read this past week. It’s really good - I don’t know many picture books that address homelessness. She’s a bit young for it, but she loves buses, so it was a fav.

I’m super into listening to The Coming Plague: Newly Emerging Diseases in a World Out of Balance. I read The Great Influenza years ago and I’ve been really into disease and epidemics ever since. I find the topic fascinating and terrifying in equal measures.

I started The Dead of Night and I’m still needing to finish off The Roots of Heaven.

QOTW: None of the books I’ve been reading lately are for prompts. I really need to focus. I’m not dreading any of them, particularly, but somehow my picks arent the ones I’m picking when it comes time to choose the next book. One that I think I’m actively putting off is the set in a hotel prompt. People saying that A Gentleman in Moscow was a slow read makes me feel like it’s not going to suit my mood. Perhaps it’s time to just pick something else.

message 24: by Ann (new)

Ann | 83 comments Hi all,

Pouring rain in Vancouver but after the suuuuper dry summer, I think we need this!

For the challenge I'm at 34/40 and 2/12.

I am going to focus on the main challenge, and I always felt those advanced challenge prompts were my "extras" for the year!

I am currently reading Guidebook to Murder, for the prompt, a book in a series you haven't read before. It's number one in a series, and I've never read a cozy mystery before. But it's cute, and sweet. I've read so much heavy stuff this year, it's kind of nice...

QOTW: I think the prompt that is causing me the most angst is the career advice one. I have repeatedly changed my mind about this book. I just need to nail it down!

message 25: by Christy (new)

Christy | 351 comments Here in Sacramento we would be entering my favorite season, with mid-70s sunny days and crisp, cool nights. However, the smoke from the fires has been making its way to us, leading to some air quality dangers, and as a former resident of Sonoma County I'm really worried for family and friends. There are currently 8,000 people fighting the fires, and many of them are only partially contained!

I didn't finish any books this week, but I made progress on two. I'm reading Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy for my espionage thriller, which I'm very much enjoying. I expected to be confused by it, since espionage concepts are difficult for my Least Devious Mind Ever, but I wanted to read a Le Carre book because he attended my college at Oxford (Lincoln). He's a great writer, and I'm looking forward to reading other books by him. Anyone have a suggestion for which one to choose?
I'm also reading The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks about Race for a book by someone I admire--Jesmyn Ward. She just received a Macarthur Genius Grant, which is awesome! So far I'm loving the book, but it's slow going. I need to pause pretty frequently and think, interrogate my assumptions and biases, and generally feel sad about the injustices in the U.S. right now. I also need to pause and reread some beautiful phrasing, because the writing in the book is wonderful.

QOTW: I am so not looking forward to career advice! I do not enjoy the tone of most self-help books; I feel like they're telling me what my experience is and I'm like YOU DON'T KNOW ME. However, that doesn't mean I can't expand my horizons and read something I'm not initially excited about... resigned sigh.

message 26: by Jackie (new)

Jackie | 510 comments Hello from dreary rainy Chicago...

The only book I read this week was Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI and I really enjoyed it. I listened to the audiobook as I had a lot of driving this weekend and I enjoyed having it in the car, but the narration was just so-so for me. The book itself was great though; highly recommend for true crime lovers.

Currently working on Sailing Alone around the World, which is good but not exactly a page turner.

Next week is spookathon so I will hopefully have much more to report then! It'll also be good motivation to get to some of the new mysteries on my tbr.

message 27: by Kristen (new)

Kristen | 40 comments Hello, this is my first time actually checking in on Thursday! I always seem to end up doing it Tuesday or Wednesday.

I also finally caught up and am at 41/52!!! 32/40 and 9/12 for advanced.

This week I read:
Thirteen Reasons Why for a best seller in a genre I don't normally read. I saw this listed as realistic fiction, and I normally read Stephen king books which are not realistic at all. It was a decent read except very depressing.
Food: A Love Story for a book about food. I listened to this on Audio and liked it a lot, I was able to get through it in 3 days.

I was dreading the audio because I had never listened to one before, but I listened to Argo last month and since then I've listened to 3. I've realized I can listen while I walk my dogs and drive to work so able to get some extra "reading" done. I do find that I need to go back and relisten to stuff often though.

I'm now dreading steam punk but have a book picked out and should be done with it for next week.

message 28: by Larissa (new)

Larissa Langsather (langsather) | 100 comments It is raining! It is so beautiful! I love my state!

I finished two books this week and they were both based off Russian folklore- go figure! I had been reading to my kids The Door by the Staircase, but it seemed like it was going so slowly and when I noticed the book discussion for October was The Bear and the Nightingale I was determined to finish both this week and reward myself with a white Russian or some other celebratory Russian food.

The Door by the Staircase- I had to do some rearranging but this book has a cat on the cover so it worked out. I liked this book but the title felt a little misleading. It had a very good happy ending.

The Bear and the Nightingale- This one is for the prompt "involving mythical creature" and I liked this one too, but, again, felt the title was a little strange.

Both books had such strong female characters. It was a great to learn about Russian fairy tales as I am not familiar with them.

32/40 and 3/12

I am about to start Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and finally finish The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto. I also need to find a new read aloud for me and my girls that also fits a prompt- I am thinking of reading Esperanza Rising for an immigrant as I have heard good things about it.

QoTW: I am not looking forward to steampunk prompt- so not my style. I did start reading The Invisible Library but I had to return it to the library before I finished and I am becoming less and less interested in finishing it as time goes on. I feel like I am having to shuffle the books around a lot. I am picking books intended for one prompt but end up filling another one better or I find a book I want to read that was already filled and now I have to creatively find a place for it. I actually enjoy that part of the challenge even though I have a feeling others would think it a waste of time. I still feel a little guilty for putting Bossypants under career advice.

message 29: by Emanuel (new)

Emanuel | 249 comments Olá, here the summer just arrived, again! I'm working so much and the therapy is killing my legs and arm, but so, just have to continue.
This week don't finished any book, reading the same 2 books.
I'm lefting one book to the end: A Rainha dos Gelados, but when I finish Outlander V - A Cruz de Fogo I'll start it, with some more portuguese books between them!

message 30: by Sheri (new)

Sheri | 726 comments Hi everyone,

Michigan decided to stop with the summer and dive straight into the worst part of fall. It's been cold, rainy, and grey all week, super bummy.

Luckily I was in Georgia over the weekend, so got a last blast of sunshine and heat (and excessive humidity).

This week I finished:

Seeing Red - This is for read harder's book by a person from central/south america, set in central/south america. It's pushing it a little since the part actually taking place in Chile is only a portion of the book. But it was on a list specifically based on this year's read harder as suggestions for that prompt, so I'm counting it.

Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body - this is for Emma Watson's feminist book club. it was a really fantastic read, but also really emotionally difficult. Just the things she experienced, both in her early life and as a fat person living in America is heartbreaking.

Thief of Time - I needed a breather after the last book, something lighthearted. I love Terry Pratchett, but I still haven't read even a fraction of all his books. Slowly working through them as I find them on book of the day deals, through the library etc.

Currently reading: Broken Monsters- this will be my read harder book set within 100 miles of my hometown. I've read another of Lauren Beukes books, so I think it'll be pretty good, if possibly mind-messing.


I'm finished with the main challenge, but the career advice prompt was the one I found least appealing. I tried not to save it for the end just so I wouldn't be dreading it too long, but I didn't even like the book I read for it.

Still finishing up Read Harder, and the book printed on the micropress is going to be my last one, and i knew it'd be a problem from the start. I have no idea if there's a micropress anywhere near me and googling didn't help. I don't like buying books for challenges, unless it's one I already wanted to buy in the first place. I couldn't figure out if any were at my library and I didn't have a long enough window of time to actually go in and talk to someone. I finally decided to bend it a bit with a compilation of a comic that was originally started on a micropress, even if the compilation is a regular press now.

message 31: by Christine (new)

Christine McCann | 461 comments Chinook wrote: "One that I think I’m actively putting off is the set in a hotel prompt. People saying that A Gentleman in Moscow was a slow read makes me feel like it’s not going to suit my mood. Perhaps it’s time to just pick something else. "

For what it's worth, I developed the same misgivings, and decided to go with Psycho. It's a classic, in its way! Plus it's short and a super-quick, compelling read.

message 32: by Sheri (new)

Sheri | 726 comments Chinook,
I read The Shinning for mine. I'm not really a King fan at all, but it was still a pretty good read. A lot different from the movie, and in a way more disturbing. You get down into Jack's head as he's spiraling out of control. So that could work if you're into suspense thriller types.

message 33: by Megan (new)

Megan | 303 comments I officially finished Seabiscuit: An American Legend during this check-in period, which I used for "A book you got from a used book sale." I also started and finished the latest in the Rosato & DiNunzio series, Exposed.

I'm currently reading and will likely finish them both over the weekend:
* Memoirs of a Polar Bear, which I'm planning to use for "A book from a nonhuman perspective" -- I finished the first two parts and have one section to go; and,
* Why Not Me?, which is my book club's pick for October.

My library notified me that the copy of Bluebird, Bluebird that I requested came in, so that will be up next for me :-D I can't wait to start it since I've heard nothing but stellar reviews.

I'm 36/40 and 12/12 -- just four books to go and I'll be done with one of them very soon. Woo-hoo!

Of the prompts I have left to complete, I'm probably least looking forward to the "book you bought on a trip" prompt only because I have no idea what I'm going to use yet. I really thought I was going to pick something up on one of the out-of-state trips I took earlier in the year, but, I didn't. Oh well! I'll just have to get creative with my definition of "trip" and see what I've got in my TBR stacks that will work. The steampunk prompt was probably the one I was least looking forward to overall, but I was happy with my choice (Soulless).

message 34: by Trina (last edited Oct 12, 2017 02:56PM) (new)

Trina Dubya (trina_dubya) Finished:

43. A book by an author who uses a pseudonym: The Distance from Me to You. I liked it but didn't adore it. I've been watching YouTube videos about hiking and the Appalachian Trail ever since I finished it, though. This book would also be good for a book involving travel and a book set in the wilderness.

44. A book set in two different time periods: The Jane Austen Project. Good stuff. I only finished it last night, so I'm still processing what I thought. I'll reread it once the challenge is done. This book could work for a book about an interesting woman, a book published in 2017, a book involving travel and a book with an unreliable narrator.

Currently reading for the challenge: Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy for the espionage thriller category.

QotW: If you are still working on your challenge, which prompt are you least looking forward to?

A book that was mentioned in another book. Bridge to Terabithia always makes me ugly cry. I'm not really looking forward to any of the remaining categories, though.

message 35: by Eujean2 (new)

Eujean2 | 249 comments Like some other San Francisco folks on this list, the Northern California fires are very present for me. The year as been rough, and work is getting busy, so I am craving some more nourishing reads. Not everything on my remaining list is light and fluffy, but I think a lot of it will feel hopeful, which is something I could use right now.

Books Finished:
I gave up on The Inhabited Woman. It means that I needed to shift around how I complete my list, but it feels really good to get back a good reading pace again.

- The Remains of the Day (unreliable narrator)
- Ella Minnow Pea (book of letters – already read The Color Purple, but shifted that to my used book prompt)

Currently Reading:
- The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven
- Library Wars: Love & War, Vol. 1
- Reinventing Comics: How Imagination and Technology Are Revolutionizing an Art Form
- Outlander (see QotW below)

For novels I am 46/52
For graphic novels I am 45/52

The 800 page book is probably the one I am least excited about. I opted for an audiobook version of Outlander that I can listen to over the course of several months. I watched the first season of the tv show, so I have enough background to stay with story, even over an extended listen. I have friends that absolutely love Outlander (book and show). I am enjoying it enough, but probably not what I would choose otherwise.

message 36: by Chrissy (new)

Chrissy | 349 comments I’ve fled the smoke of the Napa/Sonoma fires to spend the weekend in Yosemite, and do some reading while I’m here!

I finished my penultimate Popsugar category, a book recommended by a favorite author. I read How Many Miles To Babylon?, which was recommended by Maeve Binchy. It was sad and evocative.

I also read After You. It was a good sequel, and a quick read.

QOTW: I only have one left, recommended by a libraian. I kind of saved this one, and need to ask my librarian friends at work to help me find something I will love. I think doing prompts that aren’t as exciting early was a good call!

message 37: by Julie (last edited Oct 12, 2017 06:39PM) (new)

Julie | 172 comments Hi everyone!

One finish for me this week, She's My Dad, which I used as a book with a family member term in the title. I had originally slotted Time Traveler's Wife here, but went with She's My Dad instead because it fulfilled a requirement for a multicultural lit class as well. I really liked it. I could make some criticisms about some of the writing being a little long winded in places, but in all honesty, I thought the story was crafted well. Really complex, though, tons of characters and multiple subplots, so I did wind up skimming occasionally.

I've made it to 50/52.

QOTW: The prompts I have left - genre/subgenre you've never heard of, and a book mentioned in another book - are both prompts I haven't been looking forward to. I had originally slotted in fairly dense reads for those prompts and now that I've gotten super busy, they just seemed daunting. So I did change the book for the genre/subgenre you've never heard of from House of Leaves (ergodic fiction) to Bless Me, Ultima (Latin American magical realism), which I'm currently working on right now.

I want to change my book mentioned in another book, too. It was originally Snow Crash, which I've tried to get through both in print and via audio. I'll pick it up later, I'm sure, but right now my brain is too fried from textbook reading to slog through some of the info-dumps. I'm going to slot in a title that's a little lighter, if I can come up with one.

message 38: by Theresa (last edited Oct 12, 2017 07:15PM) (new)

Theresa | 1658 comments Chinook wrote: One that I think I’m actively putting off is the set in a hotel prompt. People saying that A Gentleman in Moscow was a slow read makes me feel like it’s not going to suit my mood. Perhaps it’s time to just pick something ..."

One of my friends doing this challenge chose the classic Grand Hotel which she absolutely loved. She also said it was a fast read, and being a very slow reader, she never says that.

Bonus: a classic movie and a great Broadway show were inspired by this book.

message 39: by poshpenny (last edited Oct 12, 2017 09:04PM) (new)

poshpenny | 1677 comments Howdy from soggy Oregon. I usually enjoy rain, but not so much this week. We went from none for ages to a ton, and I probably have to walk through it in the middle of the night to get to my stupid early Friday shift at work. I'd much rather send it south to California.

I FINALLY figured out how to bookmark my exact list posts, so I'm pretty happy that they are much easier to reference now.

I'm now at 34/40 - 43/52

I finished three books, two for prompts.

The Book of Lost Things was on my Audible shelf, so I listened to it while waiting for my new credits hoping it had a mythic creature in it, but I don't think it did.

All American Boys was my multiple authors book. It tells the story of two classmates, a black boy beaten by police and a white boy who witnesses it (and knows the cop). The authors are also black/white. It was very timely.

My steampunk book was The Affinity Bridge. Mystery solving in foggy London, with airships, automatons and a murderous, glowing policeman. It was OK. I might listen to the next book.

My most dreaded prompt is career advice, but late last year I grabbed The Leadership Secrets of Santa Claus: How to Get Big Things Done in YOUR "Workshop" All Year Long, which is short and hopefully kinda fun. I've been trying to save it for December for obvious reasons.

My biggest problem right now is the fact that print books are currently putting me to sleep in minutes and I chose S. as my erdotic book which is going to take AGES to get through, so I need to find a new unheard of genre book. I happen to have some others that I've seen listed for it, so I might peek at those to see if they will be easier to read.

On the other hand I might just use the book I am currently listening to, The Fold which could be quantum fiction.

message 40: by Cornerofmadness (new)

Cornerofmadness | 396 comments It's still acting like it's summer here so I'm not amused. So looking forward to fall.

I read Private Vegas for another challenge but it was pretty bad. I also read The Girl from the Other Side: Siúil, a Rún Vol. 2 which was pretty good.

The real winner for this week though was The Screaming Staircase This was such a fun paranormal YA.

QOTW - I've finished the challenge but I dreaded the 800 page book, bestseller in a genre I don't normally read, the unreliable narrator and a novel that spans a lifetime.

message 41: by poshpenny (new)

poshpenny | 1677 comments Kristel wrote: "QOTW: I am struggling with the audiobook prompt because it would be my first time. It is really difficult for me because I think it would be sooo weird to do it. Anyway, it's just in my head I guess."

If the thought of someone reading a book to you is what seems weird, maybe a memoir? Then it is just someone telling you their story. I recommend Born a Crime: Stories From a South African Childhood

Chinook wrote: "I’m super into listening to The Coming Plague: Newly Emerging Diseases in a World Out of Balance. I read The Great Influenza years ago and I’ve been really into disease and epidemics ever since. I find the topic fascinating and terrifying in equal measures. "

I really enjoyed reading The Ghost Map: The Story of London's Most Terrifying Epidemic - and How It Changed Science, Cities, and the Modern World a few years ago. Have you read it?

message 42: by Nadine (new)

Nadine Jones | 5594 comments Mod
poshpenny wrote: "I FINALLY figured out how to bookmark my exact list posts, so I'm pretty happy that they are much easier to reference now. ..."

Congrats! now tell ME how to do it!!

message 43: by Tania (new)

Tania | 479 comments Weather here is still summery too, I thought things were cooling down but the heat is back again.

Books finished this week:
- The Hidden Magic of Walt Disney World: Over 600 Secrets of the Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney's Hollywood Studios, and Animal Kingdom by Susan Veness: I'm a huge fan of the theme parks, and Disney, so this was a really fun and interesting read for me. I thought they did a nice job of creating a relevant guide even if it will never be fully up to date because things change so quickly

- What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions by Randall Monroe: This one was different, though some questions were more interesting to me than others overall it's a great work (and the drawings were quite funny)

- Diary of a Fat Girl by Moira Mugweni: I picked this up on a whim and I ended up staying up half the night to finish it. I was completely hooked on the characters' stories.

Up next: working on the prompt recommended by a library with The Color of Magic by Terry Pratchett

QOTW: The one I am least looking forward to is a book that is more than 800 pages. I think I picked out a good one for this, but it's just the pressure of finishing a long book that seems to be putting a damper on it for me. The prompt I haven't chosen a book for yet is a day of the week or month in the title. I feel like it's one of those prompts that as soon as I find a book that fits, I'll find a dozen.

message 44: by poshpenny (new)

poshpenny | 1677 comments Nadine wrote: "poshpenny wrote: "I FINALLY figured out how to bookmark my exact list posts, so I'm pretty happy that they are much easier to reference now. ..."

Congrats! now tell ME how to do it!!"

I don't see a way to do it on the app, but on the webpage go to the post you want. On the bar where it says "message 42: by Nadine" on the left, there is a time on the right. Click that time and it will take you to a page with your post at the top. Bookmark THAT page and POOF! Straight to your post!

message 45: by Nadine (new)

Nadine Jones | 5594 comments Mod
Thank you! I'll try that next time I'm on the computer version!!

message 46: by Chinook (new)

Chinook | 731 comments poshpenny wrote: "Kristel wrote: "QOTW: I am struggling with the audiobook prompt because it would be my first time. It is really difficult for me because I think it would be sooo weird to do it. Anyway, it's just i..."

I haven’t read Ghost Map, though it’s been on my radar for awhile now. I think it will be my book with a map for the ATw challenge next year.

message 47: by Allison (new)

Allison | 116 comments This week I finished my last book for the regular challenge!
The Japanese Lover, recommended by a librarian. It was just ok, not my favorite book ever by far.
Also, this week I listened to the audiobook of The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World, which I counted as a book with multiple authors since it was a better fit than my original choice.
QOTW: I'm still working on the advanced challenge, 3 left. None of them are books I wasn't looking forward to, just the ones I haven't gotten around to yet. I wasn't sure what I was going to read for the book bought at a used book sale, but I ended up picking up a used copy of Modern Girls for my IRL book club this month since it wasn't available from the library.

message 48: by Juanita (new)

Juanita (juanitav) | 723 comments This was another week in which I didn’t finish (or even read) any books. We even postponed our book club meeting since none of us had finished the book (Atonement). We are Book snobs and it is rare for none of us to finish a book. The month has just been insane at work.

I’ve got several books in the works now. Including having treated myself to an actual copy of Turtles All the Way Down by John Green. Also am 50% through the audio of A Walk in the Woods, which I am enjoying. Hoping to make good progress this weekend.

I am dreading the 800-page prompt and may not do the Advanced because of it.

message 49: by Theresa (new)

Theresa | 1658 comments Juanita wrote: " am dreading the 800-page prompt and may not do the Advanced because of it..."

Funny how many of us feel that way. It is my last prompt and I am sloooowly reading a very good book for it, yet I still have a mental block. It is ironic because when I add the total pages I read in a week, it is well over 800! Last week alone I started and finished 2 books that totalled about 1000 pages!


message 50: by Nadine (new)

Nadine Jones | 5594 comments Mod
Yes I am another one who does NOT like being told to read long books. In general, I do not like long books, because most of them just don't need to be that long, they can do with a bit of judicious editing to pare that puppy down! (Yes yes, there are exceptions ...)

If Popsugar laughs an evil laugh and comes out with "bwahahahaha >1000 pages, SUCKAHS!" I'm going to mutiny and call for a new category just within this group. Maybe we can grab all the unused categories from Around the Year and vote on which one to use to replace any crazy BOOKTOOLONG category if Popsugar throws one at us.

« previous 1
back to top