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2018 Weekly Checkins > Week 49: 11/29 - 12/6

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message 1: by Nadine (last edited Dec 06, 2018 03:30AM) (new)

Nadine Jones | 5322 comments Mod
Welcome to December!

I hope you are all happy with your reading and reading progress. I am on track to finish both of the Reading Challenges I started this year (Popsugar & Around the Year) but it does not look like I'll finish my personal challenge. This is the second year in a row that I did not read ALL of the books that I assigned myself, so I think I am too ambitious in January! Not making that mistake next year! No matter how much I want to add lots of books to my "must read in 2019" list, I'm keeping it under a dozen.

Admin stuff (LOTS of Admin stuff!)
* This month's group read of Circe is under way in the Monthly Challenge!
I thought I would join in, but my library hold list is long, so even though I've had it on hold for a while now, I don't think I'll get the book this month.

* Votes have been tallied for our first three monthly reads in 2019!!
And the winners are ...

January (puzzle or game): The 7½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle aka The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton
(this one surprised me - is it about a puzzle or game? I guess I'll find out when I read it!)

February (LOVE): To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han

March (a question): Where'd You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple

These look like some great reads! Joining in the monthly read is optional, just like everything here is optional, of course. I hope we have some great book discussions next year!!

* Please message Sara or me if you are interested in leading the discussion for any of these books.

And now onto my current reading ...

This week I finished 4 full-length books. Also, I've been reading lots of picture books and free shorts.

Whereas poems by Layli Long Soldier - meh. Her style didn't work for me, it's too experimental.

The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken - meh. The beginning was fun, but then the characters just make a series of stupid decisions that annoyed me.

Exit Strategy by Martha Wells - I love Murderbot!! This was a great conclusion to the story (told in four novellas) and I can NOT wait for Wells' upcoming full-length Murderbot novel - although I'm probably going to have to wait, it's so new it doesn't even have a title yet. Luckily for me, she's written other stuff, too. And I'm going to read it!

One of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus - this was okay. Yeah, I'll probably read the sequel.

picture books
The Thank You Book - loved it!
Triangle - odd & delightful
Pup and Bear - meh
The Word Collector - I actively disliked this one
We Don't Eat Our Classmates - fun!
They Say Blue - pretty, but ... meh, too disorganized

I'm reading a sort of literary advent calendar of short stories, one each day in December.
Yiwu by Lavie Tidhar - fantastic
The Night Cyclist by Stephen Graham Jones - fantastic
AI and the Trolley Problem by Pat Cadigan - meh
Sleeper by Jo Walton - five stars!
She Commands Me and I Obey by Ann Leckie - fantastic

Question of the Week

Are there any books you've read that you didn't really enjoy at the time, but found yourself still thinking about months or even years later?

Short answer: yes.

Two books that spring to my mind: The Woman in White and Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell. I pretty much hated both of those books while I was reading them - soooo wordy! soooo slow!! so many words with so little action! But things WERE happening, sometimes weird things, and every now and then a scene from one of those books pops into my head.

message 2: by Ellie (new)

Ellie (patchworkbunny) | 1072 comments This morning I finished my 120th book of the year, which is significant because that used to always be my Goodreads goal and I have failed for the past two years. This year I set my goal to 100 and I have smashed it! Maybe this was psychological as I never felt I was behind... Or maybe it's just adding audiobooks to my repertoire.

This week I read The Light Between Worlds and listened to Semiosis: A novel of first contact, both had good and not so good aspects.

I'm currently reading How Long 'til Black Future Month? and the stories are excellent as you would expect from N.K. Jemisin.

I started Prideon audiobook this morning as something short before I cancel my BookBeat trial. By the time I got to work my hold for This is Going to Hurt: Secret Diaries of a Junior Doctor came in way before expected. I would return it but I want to try out the new BorrowBox app the library are using now. The audiobook selection is so much better so I hope it isn't buggy.

I feel like I'm saving a lot of books for next year's challenges, I can't wait for them to start. I've read two of the monthly reads already so I can join in with discussion. The puzzle in 7 Deaths is just the mystery, but I guess that counts, it is very puzzling.

Sometimes talking about a book with others makes me appreciate it more or see it from a different angle. I can't think of any examples right now.

SadieReadsAgain (sadiestartsagain) | 767 comments Happy Thursday everyone! I only finished one book this week, when I was certain it was going to be two (turns out, In Cold Blood is longer than it originally looked on my Kindle!). When I completed PS a few weeks ago, I went back and retrofitted my books into as many ATY prompts as I could. That only left me with a few ATY prompts to complete, and I really thought I was going to do it. But then my hold for The Female Persuasion came through - that's a pretty big book, and I can't just renew it and slot it into next year's challenges because it's only a short loan due to the amount of people on hold for it! Gah. But it's a good problem to have. I'm book 63 for the year, and never thought I'd manage the 50, so I'm pretty proud. I hope I can carry that off next year, as I'm trying to do three challenges in 2019!

Anyways, the book I did finish this week was The Summer Book. This book is a peaceful, quiet slice of calm. Set on a Finnish island during the summer, it's a series of episodes in the life of a young girl and her grandmother as they live, love, bicker and pass the time. The island idyll made me nostalgically yearn for a life I've never lived. I could hear the lapping of the waves, smell the salt and feel the sun (or wind, depending on the story) on my skin. This is low key family holidays, the listlessness of the endless days of childhood, and the reflections of a woman in old age all packaged nicely into a quaint little read.

Are there any books you've read that you didn't really enjoy at the time, but found yourself still thinking about months or even years later?

I think this happens to me quite a lot. Sometimes its because I'm remembering how much I hated them (looking at you, American Psycho), sometimes it's because despite the flaws there was a good story and/or characters (The Help), and others because although I didn't like them there was something original or culturally relevant that struck me (Catch-22).

I'm not a fan of big books, no matter how good they are. I see a meme floating about that says something like "when I love a book, I check to see how many pages I have left, because I never want it to end." That isn't me - even my favourite books, I'm glad to finish them. Maybe it's because I have a binge-type personality, or because I have so many books I want to read, but if a book takes me longer than a week I get itchy.

Some books, when I look back, I'm surprised to see I rated them low. They've stayed with me, so I assume it's because I liked them...but then I realised I only gave them two or three stars (Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit, Be Near Me)! I think I'm more generous with my ratings now, which may explain some of that.

message 4: by Katy (new)

Katy M | 668 comments QOTW: I don't really think so. My sophomore year in high school, there were several books I didn't like (The Grapes of Wrath, Catcher in the Rye, Cry the Beloved Country, Lord of the Flies) and I figured since we spent so much time discussing them, maybe I still think about them. But, I really don't. Maybe Lord of the Flies, because it's popped up a couple of times on TV shows I've watched. I actually think if I were to reread it I would like it now. But, I doubt I'm going to.

Actually, fun fact (OK probably not so much), but the class discussion of Lord of the flies, was the only discussion I joined in on voluntarily without the teacher having to call on me and drag me in kicking and screaming. (I'm quite shy).

message 5: by Carmen (new)

Carmen (TheReadingTrashQueen) (thereadingtrashqueen) | 822 comments Early check in for me, so hopefully by the end of the day I can add one of my current reads to the finished reads!

It's been a busy week, and an exhausting one at that. We went to see another bunny for my old man, and then the coupling began at home. Luckily they took to each other and they seem to be very much in love right now! Such a relief after the last coupling failed. I also had a dentist appointment on Tuesday, and man it hurt. I came home, took an icepack, and sat there crying at the dinner table. Eating has been a struggle, but it's getting better. Who knew filling cavities would be this painful? Only two more times to go..

Anyways, so on to the reading! Since it's been such a busy week, my reading was slow, and I'm starting to worry about finishing the challenge. I've already read more this year than ever before (84 books!), but I don't like to leave things unfinished; though I'm okay with not finishing Back to the Classics, since I never really started it. So I guess I'm gonna have to find some time soon to try and rearrange my reads to try and tick off more prompts.

Technically nothing, but I only have one story left of this book, so that will definitely be today, so I'm counting it:
Zomerlicht, en dan komt de nacht (summerlight, then comes the night) - I still don't know what to think of this. Some stories are great, others are terrible, and the fixation on boobs and asses by both men (in lust) and women (in disgust) alike is really getting on my nerves. Why does it always have to revolve around what a woman looks like??? I think it's gonna be a 3 star read, because there is too much that annoys me (sentences that last over half a page that should have ended long ago because multiple people are talking for example, or descriptions that really don't match in the same sentence) to give it a higher rating, regardless of the stories I enjoyed/loved.

I picked up this book at the library because of the time of day in the title, but I then ended up listening to a dreadful audiobook for the same prompt, and now the next Warrior Cats book turns out to fit as wel, and honestly, I feel like I could have saved myself the torture if I had known about that.

Currently Reading
The Hunchback of Notre-Dame on audio, for the stage play/musical prompt - I thought I would have to read something else because I couldn't get my hands on a copy, but then i checked Storytel! There were several copies, most were like 2,5 hours and I was like 'surely that can't be right', and then I came across the 21,5 hour one, and I was like 'yep.' Now I'm wondering if I should have listened to one of the shorter ones, because there is so much that can be left out! I made it through the hours of non fiction though (sped up to 1,25) and I kept the speed as it was comfortable to listen to. Basically I barely know what's going on and I still have 12 hours to go at this current speed. Wish me luck.

Midnight physical book, in Dutch - See my problem??? I could have read this for the time of day prompt and actually enjoyed it! So yeah, I'm really hoping I can shift some books around, because I am not liking this haha!

I still have 7 or 8 books to go I think, especially since I didn't count Lavender Morning for the challenge. Worst comes to worst, I'll count it as favorite color, as lavender is a shade of purple, and purple is my favorite color. So fingers crossed for me!

Well, a lot of books stay with me because they are so terrible, like Waking the Moon, the only book I ever DNFed. But yeah, sometimes I look back at ratings and I'm like "well that rating would be different now", sometimes the other way around though. I saw my ratings for Fifty Shades a while ago and I didn't know how fast I needed to change those haha!

ALSO, my three Mystery Books from BlindDateWithaBook came in today and I'm so excited! They're wrapped so pretty, though, so I kinda don't want to open them haha! Am thinking of making it an advent thingy. What do y'all think?

message 6: by Jen (new)

Jen (jentrewren) | 777 comments This week has been crazy. My stitches came out of my face on Monday and one of the wounds promptly fell open as soon as it was wiped. The work experience kid got one hell of a shock as did the Doc and I. Needless to say I was restitched and steri-stripped thoroughly and we shall try again next week. Hmmm. On the plus all the dodgy bits had good margins and are fully gone so once healed no further treatment needed (and the kids have suggested I tell everyone I was attacked by a crocodile as a reason for the scars).

Better reading week as no marking just planning for next year.
Greg Hurwitz The Rains and Last Chance. The first one was heaps better than the second possibly due to my love for zombie ants causing a slight bias.
Lois Lowry Gathering Blue and Messenger (second and third books in the giver series) Third was better than the second even if 2 of my favourite characters were dead by the end of it.

Currently reading;
a whole bunch of different stuff but have to finish American Gods by next Thursday to return it to a colleague before they leave for holiday.

Not really other than to become more confused as to why so many people love them eg Little Women. I have tried reading it 4 times now and liked it less and less each time but plodded through wondering what I was missing.

message 7: by Sara (new)

Sara | 1508 comments Sigh...I haven't finished any books in the last week. I blame Anna Karenina. I've been trying to finish it so I spent much of my reading time there and still have about 5 hours left on the audio. I'm really tired of this story now, and its making me angry so I just want it over.

I finally decided I needed to take a break from Anna so I am working on a couple other books:

Mr. Dickens and His Carol by Samantha Silva. I'm planning to finish this and follow up by reading both A Christmas Carol and Jacob T. Marley before Christmas. We will see. I don't love Charles Dickens. A Christmas Carol is the only one of his books I've ever finished.

Dumplin' by Julie Murphy. I am buddy reading this with some friends. I won't have it finished before the movie drops tomorrow, but maybe over the weekend? We are expecting snow on Sunday!

I can't think of any books I disliked on the first read but continued to think about. Like others have said, I've definitely found my opinion on some books going down over time. I might give it 4 stars right after I finish it, but a few years later I may quietly take a star away :)

message 8: by Brittany (last edited Dec 06, 2018 05:59AM) (new)

Brittany | 182 comments Morning all!

Popping in before I have to take my car to the mechanics - the check engine light keeps blinking. I swear, repairs always pop up in clusters. We've repaired our electricity line, our heater, our internet and now my car in the past week and a half.

I've been reading a physical middle-grade book Jackaby because it had an intriguing plot line and I like the cover but I'm not sure if I'm going to finish it. It really just hasn't caught my attention and if anything has kind of put me into a reading slump in terms of physical books. My husband has a business dinner tonight so I'll give it another shot before I DNR it.

I've listened to 3 audiobooks. I started off with Dumplin' and quickly followed that with Puddin'. Both books were cute. I think I enjoyed Puddin' more as I was getting a little frustrated that the majority of Willow-Dean's issues were self created. I found it a lot easier to read and cheer for Millie who puts her all into pretty much every situations.

After those I read Lies Jane Austen Told Me because I was still in the mood for a lighter story. This book was just alright, I gave it 2 stars. It is a very clean romance that gets sticky sweet at moments where the MC Emma starts getting googly-eyed for Lucas. I did some serious eye-rolling at parts and nearly turned it off but I stuck with it and after a while the book did get better and somewhat redeemed itself. Still, I can see why this book had a bunch of 5 star ratings from people. If you don't mind a partial insta-love it's not too bad. Just way too quick on the head-over-heels feelings for me.


Oh gosh, great question but I can't think of anything off the top of my head. I could certainly tell you movies which did this for me as I'm much more likely to watch a film that I'm not crazy about (as sometimes I'm watching for someone else's benefit) but I'm pretty picky about the books that I read for my pleasure. I'll think about this one on my walk back from the mechanics and will update if I come up with anything!

message 9: by Johanne (last edited Dec 06, 2018 06:02AM) (new)

Johanne *the biblionaut* | 1294 comments Hi all!

This week I fell into the romance reading rabbit hole. Also read some review books. Nothing for the challenge.

I am already stressing over 2019 because there are so many books I want to read, and I don´t think they all fit... I have to find a way to not stress over the challenge, because otherwise I will have to give it up. And I really enjoy this community.
I am the kind of person who loves planning, but hates following a plan - I feel restricted (yeah I know it makes no sense), and that´s part of the problem. Oh, and I can´t stop myself from joining even more challenges...

I don´t know if I particularly disliked books and then have them stay with me, but it has happened with books I felt ambivalent about. Like Red Rising, the violence made me feel sick for some reason, and I am not usually opposed to that sort of content. I think it has a very distanced feeling to it. But I remember it very clearly, even though it´s a while ago I read it. I am even considering reading the rest of the series.
I enjoyed Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World while reading it, but it has stayed with me and grown afterwards, more than I thought it would.

message 10: by Heather (new)

Heather (heatherbowman) | 689 comments I forgot it was Thursday until I saw the check-in thread. Happy Thursday!

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. I felt like re-reading this series, so I picked this up over the weekend. I still love it as much as I did the first time I read it.

One Day in December by Josie Silver. The whole premise makes me want to set my hair on fire. I can't stand when the main conflict is "someone is in love with someone who is unavailable, but they refuse to admit their feelings AND refuse to try and move on." It's self-inflicted misery.

The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas. I've passed the halfway mark! I've read 55% of the book.

One Plus One by Jojo Moyes. This is my first book by the author. I've just barely started reading so I don't have an opinion yet.

It took me a long time to digest The Alchemist and really understand what it was about. The story didn't resonate with me. It's great that he was seeing pyramids, but I couldn't get over the fact that he sold his flock of sheep. I was obsessed over the fate of those sheep for weeks. Finally, it occurred to me that the story isn't about a literal journey and literal pyramids. It's about the emotional, mental, experiential journey to find where you belong. (Clearly, I belong with the sheep!)

message 11: by Brittany (new)

Brittany Morrison | 134 comments I finished Heidi for the book related to your ancestry prompt. I loved that movie when I was younger so I’m surprised that I just finally got around to reading it. I only have the prompt of a book about a heist to finish this years challenge. Send me ideas for this, especially shorter ones!

I took a fantasy literature film class a couple of years ago and the more that we talked about The Fellowship of the Ring the more I disliked it (loved the movie the book just wasn’t for me). On the other hand we also read The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms and I wasn’t sure how I felt about it at first, but I ended up loving it the more it was discussed and have read a couple others by N.K. Jemisin and enjoy her writing.

message 12: by Anne (new)

Anne (annefullercoxnet) | 200 comments I'm so frustrated today, I'm glad I have the check in to take my mind off the fight I had with my son about going to school. He is fifteen, he has to go to school. At this age there should be no discussion. Grrr. Sorry about my little vent. Now I get to talk about books. Hurrah!

I read mostly for young people this week, so the books went quickly. I read:
The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl- which I thought was a great book. I would definitely recommend this to a young reader (I would start at fourth grade but think that kiddos in middle school could enjoy it too).
You Go First- another good book. I would recommend this one as well. This one has a younger voice so I would give it to second through fifth graders.
Louisiana's Way Home- I had a hard time connecting to this book. It was well written, and should have been a five star read but fell flat for me. To be fair, I think others would really enjoy it so would reluctantly recommend it.
Moonrise- a book in verse about a boy facing his brother's execution date. Crossan was inspired to write this book after reading Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption, a book my son highly recommended to me and has now been moved up my TBR list. Moonrise was a heart-breaking and haunting book.
Murder on the Toy Town Express- a cozy mystery that I enjoyed and will be reading the next in the series today- if all goes as planned.

QOTW: Great question. I just can't think of any right now. Lately, I have been having trouble thinking of books off the top of my head for any question. People used to ask me for recommendations or books in different genres and I would rattle them off. Now I can hardly think. It is very frustrating. So, I will think about this question today and probably have a few examples by this evening. Maybe I will report back.

message 13: by Megan (new)

Megan (mghrt06) | 537 comments Finished Neverworld Wake for time travel. I usually hate time travel books but this one was really good. I enjoyed it a lot!!

Currently reading Naked in Death for pseudonym. and then I'll only have the Ancestry book left which is on hold at the library!!!!!

41 Regular, 9 Advanced, and 24 Non Challenge Reads.

message 14: by Charlotte (new)

Charlotte Weber | 263 comments Good morning all! I did not get much reading done this week because it's finals time and I have all these projects do. Plus, I'm working on reading An Echo in the Bone and it is looooong. But I only have two more books to read after to finish the challenge so I know I'll make it! I did read What Do You Do with an Idea? which is a cute picture book with some creative illustrations about what happens when you let an idea grow and flourish.

QOTW: Two books come to mind. The Awakening is a book I read senior year of high school and hated. I still hate it to this day and it makes my blood boil every time I think of it. It has definitely stuck with me all these years. The other is All Quiet on the Western Front which I read for class in middle school and did not like it, but it mostly had to do with my not really understanding it. I moved in the middle of high school and went from being in the Honors program to attending a school that didn't have an Honors program at all so I ended up rereading a lot of books I had already done in school and one of them was All Quiet on the Western Front. The second time around I loved it and it still resonates with me. I think I needed to be a bit more mature to really appreciate it.

message 15: by Nadine (new)

Nadine Jones | 5322 comments Mod
Anne wrote: "The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl- which I thought was a great book. ..."

Oh that looks really good! I'm going to read it and maybe pass it to my daughter next.

Anne wrote: "Louisiana's Way Home- I had a hard time connecting to this book. It was well written, and should have been a five star read but fell flat for me ... "
My kids and I were really disappointed in Raymie Nightingale, for pretty much the same reasons. It just fell flat. "Louisiana" is sort of a standalone sequel. I'm just not interested in these characters, and they feel a little stereotyped.

message 16: by Nadine (new)

Nadine Jones | 5322 comments Mod
Brittany wrote: "I finished Heidi for the book related to your ancestry prompt. I loved that movie when I was younger so I’m surprised that I just finally got around to reading it. I only have the prompt ..."

If you like SF, I enjoyed Provenance for "heist"

message 17: by Lindi (new)

Lindi (lindimarie) Hey everyone!!! Finally getting over the flu so I've been catching up on my reading the past few days.


To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo for a book about a villain or antihero. A young-adult fantasy about a siren who wants revenge on her Sea Queen mother, and a pirate-prince who makes it his hobby to kill said sirens. A good slow-burn romance akin to a retelling of The Little Mermaid.

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck for a book with alliteration in the title. Classics are always hit or miss with me, and I actually really enjoyed this short novella about George and Lennie. But that ending, oof.

Currently Reading:

Bachelor Nation: Inside the World of America's Favorite Guilty Pleasure by Amy Kaufman

Tessa and Scott: Our Journey from Childhood Dream to Gold by Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir.

Question of the Week:

Not really, although I remember reading The Last Letter from Your Lover by Jojo Moyes a couple years ago and though I really liked it at the time, I didn't expect to think about it all the time like I do! I always think of going back and re-rating and reviewing it..maybe this will be my push lol.

message 18: by Tracy (last edited Dec 06, 2018 07:38AM) (new)

Tracy (tracyisreading) | 603 comments Oh look! Its Thursday already. I haven't read anything more than a few pages of His Majesty's Dragon and My Father's Dragon. Although over the weekend I got a little delusional and picked out 22 books ( some very short, so not really an impossible goal if I could function normal at the moment) That I could read this month to finish all three of my reading challenges. Honestly I don't think I'll be finishing any of them. I'm just in a TV binge mode/slump right now

Nothing is coming to mind for the QOTW. We had a sleepwalking(?) incident overnight that involved my 8 year old, an earring stuck to pillow and a pair of scissors so I haven't slept more than 2 hours.

message 19: by Johanna (last edited Dec 06, 2018 07:53AM) (new)

Johanna Ellwood (jpellwood) | 227 comments Well after a long hiatus, I have jumped my reading into high gear and will *maybe* finish the challenge. That is still TBD!

A book by an author of a different ethnicity than you: I forgot to put this one in last week, but I read Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan for this. I loved this book and now can't wait to see the movie. I have also put his next book on my list for next year's challenge!

A book you borrowed or was given to you as a gift: My mother-in-law knows me well because she gave me Mount Vernon Love Story: A Novel of George and Martha Washington for my birthday. I LOVE historical fiction so this book was right up my alley. We all know what a great general and commander-in-chief he was, but I had know idea that his first love was Mount Vernon.

A book by a local author: I have been reading Love Is a Mix Tape for months and months and months. I finally plowed through and it actually picked up again farther along in the book and I was able to finish it. Rob Sheffield is a writer for Rolling Stones magazine who attended the University of Virginia and started out his married life in Charlottesville, VA. His book is a memoir about his time here.

A book that is also a stage play or musical: Ok. I'll admit that I cheated a bit on this one. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay is a movie, not a play. But it is written as a play. I loved the movie, and have been wanting to read the book. So I did a loose interpretation for this prompt.

A book with an ugly cover: So I didn't intend for this to happen. I downloaded an e-book in anticipation for next year and thought I would read a tiny bit to see if I liked it. Well, an entire book later I thought "oops." Anyway I read The Knife of Never Letting Go and thought that it doesn't have the prettiest cover, so I put it under this prompt. Now I have to find another book for that prompt for next year.

A book about death or grief: I have yet to start The Thing About Jellyfish.

A book by 2 authors: I have just started The Royal We. It sounds an awful lot like The Heir and the Spare which I LOVED, so we will have to see.

A book that was being read by a stranger in a public place: One of my patients was reading Johnny Appleseed: The Man, the Myth, the American Story so I thought I would give it a try. I'm enjoying it, but it's kind of a slow read.

A book about a female author who uses a male pseudonym: I picked up Seven Gothic Tales. This may be the prompt that causes me to not finish the challenge. I read 2 pages and had to put it down. I'll see what else might be a quick read for this prompt.

QOTW: I don't really spend time thinking about books that could have been. If I don't like one, I don't like it and I move on. The only time I guess it comes up is when someone gushes about a book that I didn't like. But we all have our own tastes and I guess that is that.

Crazy Rich Asians (Crazy Rich Asians, #1) by Kevin Kwan Mount Vernon Love Story A Novel of George and Martha Washington by Mary Higgins Clark Love Is a Mix Tape by Rob Sheffield Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them The Original Screenplay by J.K. Rowling The Knife of Never Letting Go (Chaos Walking, #1) by Patrick Ness

message 20: by Tara (new)

Tara Nichols (tarajoy90) | 164 comments Happy Thursday! I finished just one book this week but I'm still working on a bunch.

All You Can Ever Know: A Memoir This memoir is by a Korean-American woman who was adopted by a white family when she was a baby. I found it to be a really well-done, really compelling read, even though it made me uncomfortable at times. I am an adoptive mom. I have two kids that my husband and I adopted at birth. Though the author remains mostly positive about her adoption, she doesn't hesitate to criticize things about it that were not healthy or handled well. She particularly criticizes the way that adoptive families often talk about adoption, brushing away the pain in favor of platitudes designed to make the child feel fully accepted into the adoptive family. And I had to admit that I am often guilty of this, and I'm now thinking about how I can honor and address the loss that is inherent in adoption while still affirming that my kids are loved and accepted and treasured. It's a journey. However, the book did make me super grateful that both of my kids have open adoptions and know their birthparents, so that they'll never have to wonder and search like the author did.

Currently Reading
The Air You Breathe
Becoming listening on audiobook and oh my goodness it's so good. If you're interested in Michelle Obama at all, I highly recommend.
A Tale of Two Cities re-read
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone re-read

What an interesting question. The first one I thought of was A Clockwork Orange which I read my senior year of high school (which was a long time ago) and I didn't particularly like it but the imagery in it is so strong that I still think of it sometimes. And similarly, I read One Hundred Years of Solitude last year and did not care for it, but again, the imagery keeps coming back to me at weird times. Especially when I see a pile of ants.

message 21: by Kathy (new)

Kathy | 129 comments Charlotte wrote: "Good morning all! I did not get much reading done this week because it's finals time and I have all these projects do. Plus, I'm working on reading An Echo in the Bone and it is looo..."

I agree about the The Awakening! I was assigned this multiple times in high school and college courses, and I really, really hated it! But maybe because I studied it so often it is permanently affixed to my brain. I think maybe now30 years later I should re-read it, but I still remember how much I disliked it!

message 22: by Chandie (new)

Chandie (chandies) | 248 comments Two books this week

Born to be Wilde by Eloisa James. Historical romance. It took me forever to get through because I really didn’t like the characters but I didn’t hate them characters either. Meh.

A Duke by Default by Alyssa Cole. Contemporary romance. It was a slow burn which I love. I really loved this book until the duke stuff, then I felt it was a bit of a slog.

The World we Live In which is the third in a YA series that I really enjoyed until this book which seemed rushed together. And one of the main characters from the first book (who everyone sacrificed to save) basically sexually assaults a girl and it’s no big deal. Ugh. I still rant about it.

message 23: by Kenya (new)

Kenya Starflight | 609 comments A freezing-cold hello from Idaho! Brr... it's a day for curling up in bed with hot cocoa and a good book. Too bad I have to go to work to support my book habit...

Books finished this week:

A Boy Called Christmas -- wanted to read at least one Christmas book this year. This one's gotten rave reviews, but I found it rather unpleasant. And did we really need a graphic description of a character's head exploding?

The Black Tides of Heaven -- a stunning premise and setting, I just couldn't bring myself to care about the characters. They weren't nasty or unlikable, just... flat.

The Invisible Library -- another book with a brilliant premise but characters I couldn't give a flying fig about. Don't know if I'll continue this series or not.

Making Friends -- YA graphic novel. Cute premise, just can't seem to focus on what the plot is supposed to be.

Yeesh, did I not read anything I liked this week? I feel like a curmudgeon...

Currently reading:

The Wind in the Willows
A Season of Gifts


I often think about books I didn't like, though my opinion of them rarely changes after the fact. I mostly think about how much the book annoyed me -- Me Before You still ticks me off with its portrayal of handicapped people and some of its unfortunate implications, such as (view spoiler)

message 24: by Kathy (new)

Kathy | 129 comments I finished both my Goodreads and Pop Sugar Challenges with the same book this week!

I also had a weird book thing happen, I ordered a whole bunch of books from an online retailer and the post office delivered an empty box! Looks like I’m gonna do a whole lot of XMax re-shopping, sigh. I’m getting a refund, but boy this is disappointing, has anyone had this happen to them?

Since my last posting I read:

A Wrinkle in Time for a childhood classic I never read. I didnt like this at all. I dont read a lot of sci fi, and this didn’t encourage me to do so! I haven’t seen the movie, I don’t think I will bother now!

Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankindfor a book about my ancestry. I’m kinda of a boring European mix so I decided to go way back with my ancestors for this prompt. Liked this book quite a bit, would recommend to anyone interested in how the world evolved to where it is today.

It’s been awhile since I posted and I’ve also read a bunch of nonprompt books Lethal White, the next Cormoran Strike novel which I liked, The Ensemble a good novel about a quartet over many years and Glass Houses so I’m ready for the new Louis Penny out now.

QOTW: Most recently this has happened with Educated. I didn’t care for this much while I was reading it, but it is hard to forget. Not to mention that everyone is talking about it!

message 25: by Dani (new)

Dani Weyand | 289 comments Good morning from Columbus!

Lyra's Oxford not for the challenge, I just got excited for the (hopefully soon!) 2019 anticipated release of the second Book of Dust book. Pullman wrote a few short companion stories, and this one is about a 15 year old Lyra. It opened the door for a new narrative that I really hope gets explored in the upcoming book. It also included illustrations and other bits of additional material.

Once Upon a Time in the North same as above. Except this short story is about when Lee first met Iorek. Since this was a prequel, the story is already wrapped up and didn’t leave me wanting more details. I recommend both books to any fan of the series.

Us Against You the sequel to Beartown. I overall enjoyed the story but found many of the characters very frustrating. But maybe I just “don’t get” that obsession with a sport.

Dracula I had put this on hold anticipating a Halloween read but it just now ended up in my bookshelf. This was a fine book, not nearly as creepy as I had hoped. Though, I can see why it was such a creepy and scandalous book back when it was published. I guess just being so intimately familiar with the story and characters already through other media dulls the unknown and tension that would be such an important aspect of the book. I’m still glad I finally got around to reading it!

Siren's Lament for one of book riot’s comic prompts. This is a web comic about a mermaid curse, essentially. With friendship, romance and comedy all layered in. I don’t think this series is done but I’ve read everything out so far so I’m marking it as done. I don’t like having books in my “currently reading” shelf very long if I can avoid it. The illustrations is what drew me to the comic, in fact a screenshot of some of the art is now my phone’s home and lock screen. There’s also nice accompanying piano background music on most of the comics, that’s a really nice touch.

Mem for book riot’s sci-fi with a female protagonist with a female author prompt. I’m not sure where I found this recommendation but I’m so glad someone mentioned it because I really loved this book. It takes place in the 20’s where there’s technology to extract painful memories. Except the memories are actual human bodies that just experience the same memory over and over until they expire (I.e. die). If you liked Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, you’ll probably like this. It gave me the same sweet melancholic vibe that movie did. And it also has Westworld “I have sentience and want to be treated as a person” vibe. The Mem’s protagonist is one of these memories, but she’s unique in that she has other memories and can form new ones. So it’s a journey to figure out why, and her fight to be an individual and not a possession.

Persuasion for book riot’s posthumous prompt. Another great Austen novel. You can most definitely tell she wrote this when she was older via her protagonist’s age, manner, and situation. Anne Elliot is 27 or 28, so practically an old maid by the time’s standards and she has a much more pragmatic personality. This follows the typical Austen style storyline. But I loved it, and I think now I’ve read all of the Austen novels, so yay me!

So I’m at 39/40; 9/10 for popsugar and 23/24 for book riot with 192 books read this year.

QOTW: I can’t really think of a book that I didn’t like that I now think back on in a different light. But I do think about The Last Winter of Dani Lancing and In the Woods quite frequently and it’s usually with annoyance lol. There was so much potential and they just... ugh. They just were not good books.

message 26: by Sheri (new)

Sheri | 714 comments Hi everyone!

Cold and wintery here in Michigan, looking forward to winter solstice so the days can go back to getting longer instead of shorter.

This week I finished:

Requiem for the Sun - re-read, trying to get through the second trilogy arc so I can start on the third one next year, which I actually haven't read so might use for some challenges. (I dont' like counting re-reads unless the challenge IS to re-read something).

Tall, Dark & Hungry - just a quick re-read as a mental break, I like the symphony of ages books but they are long, dense, and very plot heavy. Not brisk at all!

Currently reading

Elegy for a Lost Star - re read of book 2 of the second arc of the series.

Death Masks - listening to the audio book as a re-read while i work on my unending cross stitch project.


I think I've had it happen, but I can't really think of an example offhand.

Usually I have the opposite problem, where I'll finish reading a book and rate it 4-5 stars, and then a few weeks later I can barely remember what it was about, or why I liked it so much. Sometimes I think I should rate the books a few weeks after I read them, not right as I finish.

message 27: by Hope (new)

Hope Happy Thursday! Actually finished 3 books this week (and dnfed 1)

Patina- another solid middle grade read
Spinning Silver- took me a bit to "warm up" (hehe) to this book, but I ended up enjoying it a lot.
Code Talker: The First and Only Memoir By One of the Original Navajo Code Talkers of WWII- great look into the live of an American hero. The tradities he went through after the war with 4/6 of his children dying prematurely broke my heart, though.
The Epic Crush of Genie Lo- dnfed this one, I got halfway through and was still bored (fighting demons should be exciting!) so I quit.

Currently reading:
The Arabian Nights (still lol. I will finish this. Eventually.)
The Mad Wolf's Daughter
The Tenant of Wildfell Hall
Retribution Falls

That happened when I was watching people talking about books in the Great American Read that I had read but disliked- I starting looking at the books from a new angle and appreciating them more. For instance, I didn't really like The Great Gatsby but after hearing GRRM fanboying over it, it makes me think maybe I should give it another shot. I also found myself bringing up Flowers for Algernon, which I hated when I read it, as an example of how power and success can corrupt previously loving, humble people.

message 28: by Ali (new)

Ali (aliciaclare) | 153 comments Hello everyone! I've been a little under the weather this week. I think I've managed to sleep off most of it, but I hope it doesn't develop into something else!

This week I finished one book which was Becoming by Michelle Obama. I loved it. I listened to this on audio, which was 19 hours of Michelle Obama talking to me, which I loved. The book was so well written, which I have no idea if she had help or not. When she describes her dad's passing, I was just straight up crying at the bus stop!

Currently, I'm listening to the audiobook for Hallowe'en Party and reading The Poetry of John Keats to knock out some of my remaining challenges. I'm also reading Children of Blood and Bone, which I've been meaning to read all year but now I'm kind of putting it on pause so I can finish my 5 remaining challenges.

QOTW: I can't think of anything offhand. If anything I tend to have opposite reactions, like really enjoying a book but then reflecting on it and realizing it didn't hold up well. Or, as with Ghosts and The Love That Split the World, I read some critical pieces from Native authors breaking down how this wasn't great representation, which made me bump my review down.

Thegirlintheafternoon I read a lot this week, but most importantly: I'm only one book away from finishing the Popsugar Challenge! I need to finish listening to the audiobook of The Watsons Go to Birmingham - 1963 (narrated by LeVar Burton, and really charming!), and then I'll be finished.

message 30: by Carmen (new)

Carmen (TheReadingTrashQueen) (thereadingtrashqueen) | 822 comments I wrote down comments here to others, but forgot to post it and now it's gone. Typical. Let's see what I can remember!

Jody: SAME THOUGH. If I don't plan, I stress. If I plan and stray from said plan, I stress. It's a struggle haha! And of course I add on more and more challenges. Woops.

Someone read The Knife of Never Letting Go, and to them I say: I can't blame you for accidentally reading the whole thing! Chaos Walking is so addictive and it's the trilogy that got me out of a reading slump that had lasted for years! I cannot wait for the movie to come out next year (with Tom Holland and Mads Mikkelsen!)

And I never had an empty box arrive! Did they give you an explanation of what happened?

message 31: by Carmen (new)

Carmen (TheReadingTrashQueen) (thereadingtrashqueen) | 822 comments Also, the reason why I noticed my comment wasn't posted, I thought I had survived the non fiction part of The Hunchback of Notre-Dame.

Turns out, there's more.

Save. Me.

It's confusing though because my app says I still have 11,5 hours to go, but the app thingy on my lock screen says I only have 4 hours left and that I've listened 13,5 hours already (I'm pretty sure I haven't). It gave me hope but alas. Though I do feel like I've listened to much more than 6 hours so far!

Seriously starting to think I should have listened to the 2,5 hour versions and told myself it counted. But here we are. Yay autism.

message 32: by Theresa (new)

Theresa | 1580 comments Woot! It's December, and since I finished all my challenges for this year, I'm dedicating this month to my addiction to Christmas romances and mysteries and all books set at Christmas or about Christmas! I have a deep and abiding love for these, and I own a huge collection of Christmas themed books, many of which I re-read annually.

Challenges finished:
Pop Sugar -- end of August
ATY - in November -- I actually double dip with Pop Sugar - once I finish PS, I go through all my read books for the year and plug in to ATY. That left only 3 or 4 which I knocked off quickly.
A-Z using titles -- in November and also a double - or triple dip with other challenges - only had 3 letters after completing PS and ATY, and 2 of those I filled with planned Christmas themed reads.
Good Reads Yearly Goal - 150 books, hit in October. I'm at 171 as of today. Last year I read 182. For 2019, I think I will average the 3 numbers - 150, 182 and this years total -- to set 2019 goal.

One comment on the upcoming January monthly read for prompt book featuring a puzzle or game --- this was actually a suggestion I made and I was definitely thinking that any book where a puzzle of some kind needs to be solved, or a scanvenger hunt, fits - as with Anthony Horowitz' Magpie Murders for example. I've actually posted a number of suggestions to this prompt thread, including ones I recently discovered on my Want To Read list (which I'm reorganizing a bit at a time). Can't opine on suitableness of the winner for the group read as I have not yet read it. Probably will read and join in the group read in January though!

Now to my finishes - and there were a lot although at least 3 of them were novellas:

Olive Kitteridge - I loved this! Can't believe it's been sitting on my bookshelves for about 8 years, unread. Reading this was to experience Olive Kitteridge's lifetime, and the joys and sorrows of many of the denizens of Crosby, Maine, a small ordinary unremarkable coastal village. I did not really like Olive, but by the end, I was very fond of her. In fact, I grew up in a small town in upstate NY, and I found everyone, including Olive, to reflect people I knew growing up. 5 stars from me and a very creative use of the short story format to tell a full story. It's also a Pultizer Prize winner should anyone need one for a challenge.

That was the end of the 'serious' reading. Since December 1 when I embarked on Christmas reading, I have finished:

Lock, Stock & Jingle Bells and Naughty but Nice - the 2nd and 3rd novellas in a trilogy involving the Hamilton Family, that started with Unleashed which I read on Thanksgiving. Unfortunately these were reissues, which I did not realize at the time I purchased then in ebook (a major pet peeve with ebooks - publishers do not consistently disclose if previously published in any format), so the 1st and 2nd suffered from knowing all. However, the third one I had NOT read when previously published about 10 years ago, so I really enjoyed the final couple and the resolution of the Hamilton family drama. BTW, the whole Hamilton Family secret was practically an 'oh by the way' element; these are pretty much just Christmas romances.

Christmas at Lilac Cottage - absolutely totally and thoroughly enjoyed this one! Looking forward to reading more by this British author. It has all the elements I wanted in a Christmas romance: hot chocolate making, cake baking, Christmas tree decorating, sudden snow storms, cozy fires, some moderate but lovely steamy sex, humor (as in Penny's real name!), and a huge lovable dog named Bernard. It also is at times unconventional - Penny is a professional ice sculptor, and both teenage pregnancy and sexual harassment are key issues in the plot but not in the expected way. I was completely charmed.

Home for Christmas by Holly Chamberlin - This is marketed as a romance novel but there really is only tangential romance. This is in truth a contemporary novel addressing family traditions as the transition is made from a family with young children to one of adults, and a woman copes with empty nest syndrome and the need to become an individual again not just a mom. Plus she goes crazy with baking and decorating, something I can relate to! I enjoyed this a whole lot.

Tied Up with A Bow - a novella set at Christmas in Connolly's County Cork cozy series. Cannot really recommend - thought poorly written although story sweet and even funny. However, I have not read any of the series, and it was fine as a commute read.

Currently reading:

A Christmas Party - one of her mysteries originally titled Envious Casca until her publisher had the brilliant idea to change the title to get in on the Christmas themed book market.

Lady Osbaldestone's Christmas Goose and Lady Osbaldestone and the Missing Christmas Carols - Stephanie Laurens' Regency Christmas stories featuring one of her favorite characters.

QOTW: Moby-Dick or, The Whale leaps to mind! Oh man, I read this the summer I turned 18 - voluntarily I might add -- and only liked it to about page 35 -- from the time Ishmael meets Queequegg to the end, it was torture. I still vividly remember the extensive discriptions of the harvesting of the blubber from a whale. I made the mistake of reading that while eating lunch in the cafeteria of the factory I was working in for the summer. Was not able to eat tuna fish again for at least a decade.

I do take a certain pride in actually have read it and doing so on my own. But I absolutely never recommend it, nor would I ever re-read it. Yet I still remember a number of scenes from it.

message 33: by Tania (new)

Tania | 458 comments Hello! I'm not 48/50 for the challenge, and on track to complete my personal goal. I have a few challenges that I won't complete (50 states, 80 countries) but I completed more of them than last year so it's still a good accomplishment.

This week I finished:
The Shining by Stephen King - read for the prompt "book set in the decade you were born"

Christmas Chaos by Jennifer Conner - calling this a short story would be generous as it ended just as it was getting good, read for another challenge

A Promise for Her Love by Elaina Lee - short story, read for another challenge

Blue Almond Eyes by Natalie Nixon - read for "favorite color in title" prompt, it was ok (good story but didn't care for the writing style)

In the Red Light: A History of the Republican Convention of 1964 by Norman Mailer - interesting historical perspective on a point in time event and the fears going in and coming out of it, read for a nonfiction challenge

QOTW: I'm sure this has happened to me, but I'm struggling to think of an example.

message 34: by Tania (new)

Tania | 458 comments Johanna wrote: "Well after a long hiatus, I have jumped my reading into high gear and will *maybe* finish the challenge. That is still TBD!

A book you borrowed or was given to you as a gift: My mother-in-law knows me well because she gave me Mount Vernon Love Story: A Novel of George and Martha Washington for my birthday. I LOVE historical fiction so this book was right up my alley. We all know what a great general and commander-in-chief he was, but I had know idea that his first love was Mount Vernon."

I loved this book!

message 35: by Anna (new)

Anna (annaemackenzie) Happy Thursday! This week has been so long, I’ll be so glad when I’m done with it.

I have just finished one book this week - The Bees by Laline Paull. I was a bit apprehensive about this one as it’s not my usual kind of book but I find bees fascinating (I actually used to do beekeeping!) and my father-in-law loved this, so I thought I’d give it a go. I really enjoyed it. The story was interesting and I loved how the workings of bees were woven into it. I’ve used this for my book with an animal in the title.

For me I think this would be Enduring Love by Ian McEwan. I studied it for A-Level and hated it. However, the opening chapter is undeniably brilliant and I find myself thinking of it often.

message 36: by Cendaquenta (new)

Cendaquenta | 686 comments Evening!
This week has been fun, we've been putting the tree up. It's looking nice although a couple of my Disney decorations have gone missing which makes me a bit fretful.
Got lots of books out of the garage while digging for the decs and also my whole collection of Funko Pops... all the hundreds of them... 😳 So have made a lot of progress on setting up and decorating the office/library, too.
Went to see Wreck-It Ralph 2 last weekend, it was just... okay. Lacked a lot of the charm of the first. Was a nice day out with friends anyway.

3 books this week, none for Popsugar.

The Toymakers - This was a charming Christmassy read. Quite reminiscent of The Night Circus in that the environment/setting is practically the protagonist. Very much enjoyed it.

Lumberjanes: The Infernal Compass - This was just very cute. A side story giving a big focus to Mal and Molly's relationship, the anxieties Molly has about it, and how it affects the group dynamic. They have such a sweet little romance and I just want to protect them.
The art style is very pretty - it's quite light lines with a black-and-white colour scheme and just splashes of green here and there.

The Seafarer's Kiss - Fairly so-so. Bit too young for me; the writing level feels like the younger end of YA and there's an awful lot of YA clichés too - "not like other girls", the stereotypical Mean Girl Clique, etc. etc. I did like the retelling aspect, though, and the inclusion of Norse mythology.

Currently reading:
Trans Britain: Our Journey from the Shadows - Very interesting and educational so far.
The Woman Reader - Might temp-DNF this, it's good but very dense.

QOTW: Hmm.
Uhhh, there was The Dogs. Never forgotten that one. The plot involves two dogs that go missing on Bodmin Moor, then come back years later and kill their owner. Read it as a tween, it terrified me and gave me a complex about protecting my throat while I slept in case something went for my jugular. 😬

message 37: by SadieReadsAgain (new)

SadieReadsAgain (sadiestartsagain) | 767 comments Theresa wrote: "Woot! It's December, and since I finished all my challenges for this year, I'm dedicating this month to my addiction to Christmas romances and mysteries and all books set at Christmas or about Chri..."

Exactly the same way I feel about Moby Dick. I read it for the challenge this year...never want to repeat the experience!

message 38: by Carmen (new)

Carmen (TheReadingTrashQueen) (thereadingtrashqueen) | 822 comments Hundreds of Funko’s! 😱

I have to admit I don’t know how much I currently have, but I’m glad I’m not alone! If you ever want to get rid of some hit me up 😜

message 39: by Jacqueline (new)

Jacqueline | 342 comments Good morning from the Outback. I’ve pretty much spent the last week recovering from our trip. Had to go over to the big town yesterday so I could see my nail tech and get my nails done for our town’s Christmas party tonight. Ended up with Santa and Rudolph on my ring fingers, rose god glitter on my pointers (I’m wearing rose gold reindeer antlers and snowflake earrings so I went rose gold) and dark blue on the others. And I picked up Hubby’s suitcase as well from the airport. He’s happy now. He has clothes again lol

While I was there I had to find something to wear for it and my nephews 21st in Sydney tomorrow. Honestly what is it about clothes shopping? When you have the money and the Occassion you can’t find anything but a couple of weeks later when you don’t have either you see heaps. I found a couple of OK dresses but they weren’t what I really wanted. One is white with big dots that look like baubles and the other is blue and green and black. My nails are dark blue because it’s in both dresses.

I also hit the second hand Bookshop. 8 books for $30. Not too shabby. I got the 3 books from Lynn Flewelling’s Nightrunner series, a book of Ray Bradbury’s short stories (Quicker Than The Eye), Dawn by Octavia Butler, Silverthorn by Raymond E Feist, The Good People by Hannah Kent and The Women in Black by Madeleine St John.

I bought the birthday boys present (a leather wallet and a duffle bag) and I also had to buy the Christmas presents for 2 of Hubby’s siblings and their families since we are seeing them tomorrow. I bought them all books (I bought a hell of a lot of books yesterday) and some chocolates and shortbread biscuits.

I must say I’ve been feeling sick this week. Sort of nauseous like I’ve been on a ride too long. I started feeling like this when we got into Hong Kong on Thursday morning last week and I thought it was just because I was tired and the rides at Disneyland made it worse and it hasn’t gone away. I was thinking it’s some sort of vertigo. Maybe. Or just exhaustion. Anyhoo I’ll feel better (hopefully) when I can get to the beach for a few days of sleep in a week and a half.

Kathy I didn’t like A Wrinkle in Time either but I did enjoy the movie. Go figure.

That sucks about your face Jen. Got to love kids though. Crocodile 🐊 lol

Now to the books I’ve finished this week. That’s easy....none. Just added to my currently reading list.

Actively currently reading
Wundersmith by Jessica Townsend (hardback) Enjoying it so far. Just too tired to read it.

Ladies in Black by Madeleine St John (library audiobook/paperback) I started listening to it in the car yesterday but I picked up the paperback yesterday as well for a few dollars. The paperback is under the original name of Women in Black but it’s been changed to Ladies in Black because that’s the name of the movie that was released this year based on the book.

The Cloud Roads by Martha Wells (ebook) Really enjoying this one. I loved her Murderbot books and had to read everything she’s written. Started this on the plane last week and haven’t finished it yet.

And about half a dozen others and if you want to check them out check out my profile.


Can’t think of any off the top of my head but yeah I do that sometimes.

message 40: by Cendaquenta (new)

Cendaquenta | 686 comments Ooh, The Good People is great, very dark and sad but still. Hope you feel better soon Jacqueline!

message 41: by Johanne (new)

Johanne *the biblionaut* | 1294 comments It's funny how clothes shopping is so utterly uninspiring, but bookshopping is the best :)

message 42: by Sarah (new)

Sarah (sezziy) | 832 comments Hi everyone. I'm back from my reading hiatus during Nano month.

Since my last update I've read:
Blood of Tyrants
The Making of a Marchioness
Down and Out in Paris and London
Northern Lights (reread)
...which I now realise is a lot of books for a month when I wasn't going to read haha!

Currently reading: The Surface Breaks. I just started it today and I think the main character is going to annoy me.

QOTW: Not really with books I hate but sometimes I am surprised by books I have given a 3* rating to when I think years later they would have been higher. Like The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is something which I remember devouring in one day. It always crosses my mind and I went on to read all of the sequels so I figured it had to be at least 4* but I only gave it 3* back when I read it. The same for Mars Evacuees, Holes, The Prisoner of Zenda and The Lost World. They all had 3* ratings when I read them but they've stuck with me years later

message 43: by Lauren (last edited Dec 06, 2018 03:54PM) (new)

Lauren Oertel | 697 comments This week I finished On the Other Side of Freedom: The Case for Hope, and loved it! DeRay is a friend and personal hero of mine, and I'm so excited that he's flying out from Baltimore to join the Austin Justice Coalition Book Club discussion we're having for this on Sunday. :) 5 stars

I finished the audio version of Where the Past Begins: A Writer's Memoir, which was kind of all over the place. I enjoyed some parts, but it was fairly wandering and not quite what I expected. 3 stars

I also listened to Burial Rites, which was interesting. The beginning didn't catch my attention, but then I was very intrigued for the middle 80%. The ending could have left us with more to think about though. 4 stars

I'm currently listening to Pilgrim at Tinker Creek and finishing up The Last Watchman of Old Cairo on kindle.

The first one that comes to mind was The Heart Goes Last, which I read a few months ago. I was really disappointed with how it turned out, but I still think of some of things that came up... In another way, I remember reading The Color Purple in high school and not really connecting, until the part that relates to the title. I'll always remember that statement about God wanting us to see the color purple and be grateful for the beauty of the world rather than focus on worshiping/fearing them. And the The Great Gatsby was annoying in high school because we over analyzed it for about six months in AP English, but it's pretty memorable.

message 44: by Jacqueline (new)

Jacqueline | 342 comments Book shopping is the best. I had to leave the second hand Bookshop because I couldn’t stop picking up books and I had to keep my money for other less important things.

The picking books for others bit was harder. My sister in law once said she wouldn’t read a book to save her life. In front of her kids. Who also don’t read. Well she’s getting one for Christmas. So are they. I got her Ladies in Black. She might like the easy, fun story about women in retail in 1960.

She will probably whinge she doesn’t have time to read anyway. Many years ago we were all staying at my father in laws and I’d just got my kids to bed and hers wouldn’t go (which was annoying my kids because they were all in the one room and they wanted to sleep) and I was sitting doing some cross stitch and relaxing and she’s carrying on to her husband (apparently but it sounded like she was talking to the whole room) that she never has time to do that. I said that you have to make time. Then I got abused for butting into her conversation with her husband. Her father then upped her because it sounded like she was talking to all of us. Nasty woman but anyhoo....

It’s her son who is 21. She put “presents appreciated” on the bottom of the invitation. I thought that was rude. I actually got him the first Jack Reacher book. Maybe he’ll read it. Maybe he won’t.

My niece liked Eat Pray Love. I threw it into a family Christmas basket for them a few years ago and she actually read it. I see it in Instagram photos sometimes with her saying it’s her favourite book. Sadly I think it’s her only book. I bought her The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman for Christmas. I was looking for Little Paris Bookshop but couldn’t find it. My older niece (the daughter of Hubbys eldest brother) loved it and said it affected her soul. I loved it too and I thought the younger niece might like it. Maybe next Christmas. I bought their father Bloke-a-saurus a book with jokes and stupid things in it. Do you know the saying “dumb as dog shit”? I think they said it originally about this guy. He’s scary stupid. I can’t talk to him for longer than about 10 minutes or I want to run away screaming.

I got The Good People from the library on audiobook before we went away but haven’t listened to it yet. When I saw it for a few dollars yesterday I decided that I’d rather read it than listen to it anyway. I’ve been meaning to read Burial Rites too but you know how it is “so many books and so little time”. I’ve already read 82 books this year. Can’t fit everything in.

message 45: by poshpenny (new)

poshpenny | 1584 comments Bbrrrrrrr! Who turned on the Arctic? Gadzooks it's cold!

I was annoyed that I still had to many prompts left, so I looked harder and moved some stuff around, and now I have just one regular and one advanced prompt left!

Bridge to Terabithia
As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess Bride
The Legend of Rock Paper Scissors - I had a rough day and was sad, so I re-read this book to cheer me up.
Goodnight Krampus

Currently Reading:
#Notyourprincess: Voices of Native American Women
The Last Bookaneer: A Novel

I'll think about the QOTW later. I have four episodes of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel left!

message 46: by Milena (last edited Dec 06, 2018 05:21PM) (new)

Milena (milenas) | 809 comments I am so close to being done with Popsugar. 5.5 hours of audiobook to go. I actually watched 3 episodes of Queer Eye with my daughter a few days ago. I haven't watched so much TV in ages.

It finally! Been struggling with it since October.
A Wrinkle in Time Like a few people said, I did not care for it.
Surprise Me Not for a challenge, and I did not care for it either.
The Residence: Inside the Private World of the White House Interesting, but not as much dish as I hoped there would be.

Currently Reading:
The Romanovs: 1613-1918 My last book for Popsugar. I've been reading it on and off all year.
Uprooted just for fun.

I can barely remember books I like, much less ones I don't like. They're out of my head within weeks.

message 47: by Alyssa (new)

Alyssa (tinyshinycello) | 26 comments Hello all,

I finished reading The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and Driving Miss Daisy for prompts this week. Still working on non-challenge book The Soul Catcher.

I think I'm going to start The Things They Carried next for the local author prompt this week. I am so close to finishing the challenge. I think there is still hope I can finish, but it will be very close I think.


I still think about The Stranger. How I loathed that book. I couldn't believe my friends who thought existentialism was great philosophy to live on. So much I could say, but it's been over 10 years now and I do want to read it again though and see if I get as mad at it.

I also read a mystery book starring a cat and I just completely hated it while reading. I wish I had kept it, because I think it would be good for a laugh.

message 48: by Serendipity (new)

Serendipity | 144 comments I feel my annual Decmber reading slump kicking in - in terms of quality at least. I finished five books during the week and gave two of them 2 stars. I think I only had a couple of other 2 star reads all year. Debbie Macombers's Merry and Bright was predictable and formulaic. My fault for reading it I guess since I pretty much knew it would be, but I was hoping that reading Christmas books would put me in a Christmassy mood and it was on the shelf at the library. The Bad Mother, my other 2 star read infuriated me. Why give away what should have been a key plot element and twist on the front cover. I thought the writing was pretty uneven as well and never really warmed to the main character. On the more positive side The Prague Sonata and When Darwin Comes To Town were both solid 4 star reads. And my other Christmas pick - Christmas in London by Anita Hughes - at least warranted 3 stars. Light and fluffy but I loved the setting and all the mentions of desserts! If a book is a "good" book (classics sometimes fall into this category - Heart of Darkness I'm thinking of you) but I personally didn't enjoy it then it can sometimes stick with me. But often I don't enjoy more contemporary books because they are forgettable in some way e.g. unoriginal, poorly written etc. And then I forget them as soon as I shut the back cover - and sometimes sooner!

message 49: by Chinook (new)

Chinook | 731 comments A better reading week than last week! Though, looking back at last week I was just really scattered in my reading and there are several books I’ve still got on the go that I read large chunks of last week.

Gmorning, Gnight!: Little Pep Talks for Me & You - there’s a lot going on in my personal life right now and almost as much going on for my husband, and that greatly affected my read of this. A few of them really hit me in the solar plexus it a lot of them felt cutesy and annoying. I think in a different emotional state I’d have enjoyed this more. But I used it for time of day in the title.

Cowboy Boyd and Mighty Calliope - so, adding in that Goodreads summer challenge may have killed my chances of finishing any challenges this year. I finally decided it was time to use some picture books to fill some tasks, so this was for Western.

American War - I loved this! I found the world completely fascinating, considering what’s going on now with Confederate flags and statues and how this is all wrapped up in what might the American South do in another civil war sparked by a rejection by the north of fossil fuels. I used this to fill in a prompt about a book from the future.

Decluttering at the Speed of Life: Winning Your Never-Ending Battle with Stuff - I’m in the process of packing and trying to move before Christmas and I thought listening to this would help me be a bit more strict with myself about paying down as I packed. And I really liked it a lot - but also, it made me cry a few times. Clearly, I’m a big stressed and emotional.

The Year of Less: How I Stopped Shopping, Gave Away My Belongings, and Discovered Life Is Worth More Than Anything You Can Buy in a Store - I listened to this for the same reason. I related a fair amount to Cait, though I think the fact that she writes from the perspective of a single childfree woman made some of it not hit for me. Still, interesting to hear.

Illegal - I needed something set at sea and short. And this turns out to be both those things and also really good. I think it’s a great intro to the issue of migration for older children.

Sassafrass, Cypress and Indigo - my copy of this expired and then I had to wait out two holds before finishing off that last third and that may have affected my appreciation, but this one just wasn’t for me. I’m not really a fan of having music and art described in novel form and poetry is not my thing but this is incredibly poetic. Still worth the listen, but I didn’t love it.

QOTW: Maybe Tess of the d’Urbervilles, which I’m rereading now.

message 50: by Carmen (new)

Carmen (TheReadingTrashQueen) (thereadingtrashqueen) | 822 comments Jacqueline, I remember you mentioning that sister-in-law before. Wow. Have to say, I still don’t like her haha!

Also, to whoever it was who watched Queer Eye (I’m on mobile so I can’t check); what did you think?? I love my queens!

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