Ultimate Popsugar Reading Challenge discussion

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2019 Weekly Checkins > Week 38: 9/13 – 9/19

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message 1: by Sara (last edited Sep 19, 2019 08:30AM) (new)

Sara | 1508 comments Hello fellow bibliophiles! Happy Thursday! Yesterday and today we are finally getting a little taste of Fall weather which makes me so happy! It was actually a little crisp outside this morning!

Admin note: The October group read of The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman is coming up. Anyone who wants to participate may want to get a copy of the book soon! Discussion to be led by Lauren.

I have been stuck lately, only wanting to read books that don’t work for my remaining prompts (and no amount of rearranging has helped). I am planning to focus on reading challenge books this weekend!

Finished:
Save Me the Plums: My Gourmet Memoir by Ruth Reichl. I’ve been meaning to read one of Ruth Reichl’s books for a while. Garlic and Sapphires: The Secret Life of a Critic in Disguise was the one I had my eye on, but the audiobook for Save Me the Plums popped up available at my library. I enjoyed it. Ruth does her own narration which, I think, helped to personalize the story. I need to pick up Garlic and Sapphires now so I can read about her time as a restaurant critic.

Mom & Me & Mom by Maya Angelou – really enjoyed this and ready to read more!

Bitter Greens by Kate Forsyth. I only heard about this book through a podcast a few months ago. I love fairytales, love most fairytale retellings, and origin stories so this fits the bill nicely. It’s a story within a story within a story. The book starts with a fictionalized story of real-life French writer Charlotte-Rose de Caumont de La Force. She wrote a fairytale called Persinette which was inspired by the Italian tale Petrosinella and in turn influenced the Grimm brothers in their telling of Rapunzel. Charlotte-Rose was sent to a convent by Louie XIV for her bad behavior - all the above is based on fact. There's debate about how Charlotte-Rose heard the story of Petrosinella in the first place. In this book, while in the convent, one of the nuns shares with her the story of Petrosinella. And within the story of Petrosinella, the witch tells her origin story. It sounds convoluted, but it worked! The book (like so many these days) was maybe a little too long, but overall I enjoyed it very much. Using this for a book set in a convent, but it would also work for a book with “bitter” in the title.

Currently Reading:

Well I just wrapped up both an audiobook and a kindle book in the last couple of days so I'm working on selecting my next reads. This afternoon I will be hanging out at the library for a while until my daughter's yearbook staff meeting is over so I plan to dive into something new.

Question of the week:

(From poshpenny) If you could attend a party/event that recreates the setting or atmosphere of a book, which book would you want it to be?


I'm thinking a party recreating the 1920's speakeasies would be fun. So I'll select The Girls at the Kingfisher Club: A Novel. It's a retelling of the Twelve Dancing Princesses fairytale set in 1920's New York and it is fabulous!

ETA: I've been inspired to dig deeper with the QOTW after reading so many of your answers!

I am changing mine to a Night Court themed party (no, not the show, the one from A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas).

“It was the most beautiful place I’d ever seen. Whatever building we were in had been perched atop one of the gray-stoned mountains. The hall around us was open to the elements, no windows to be found, just towering pillars and gossamer curtains, swaying in that jasmine-scented breeze…lush plants or thick rugs scattered over the moonstone floor.”

-Sarah J. Maas, A Court of Mist and Fury


The room descriptions, the clothes, the freaking bathroom sounds AMAZING! Add in a little visit from Rhys and I'm all set! Also, this kind of setting would be much more my speed than the 1920's speakeasy...since I don't dance lol :)


message 2: by Katy (new)

Katy M | 676 comments I finished The Tournament of Blood as my book with an amateur detective. Not at all as gory as it sounds. Just good medieveral murder fun.

I have about 10 pages left to go in The Borgias: Power and Fortune as my book published in 2019. Very interesting

QOTW: That's a good question. I'm kind of weird in that I love Victorian England, so maybe A Christmas Carol themed Christmas party would be fun.


message 3: by Milena (last edited Sep 19, 2019 05:05AM) (new)

Milena (milenas) | 815 comments I am loving the weather the last few days, Sara. I always ask Alexa the humidity in the morning, and it's nice to not have it be 100%.

I am on my second to last book for Popsugar. I have one book to go for Read Harder, two to go for Reading Women and Classic Bingo, and five to go for ATY. As much as I love the challenges, I am ready to free read for the rest of the year, and start planning for next year's challenges.

Finished:
I only finished audiobooks this week.
An Irish Country Doctor
Little
De Profundis

Currently reading:
Word Freak: Heartbreak, Triumph, Genius, and Obsession in the World of Competitive Scrabble Players
Middlemarch
The Bookshop on the Shore on audio

QOTW:
This is a very clever question, and of course I don't have a clever answer. I will think about it and come back.


message 4: by Sara (new)

Sara | 1508 comments Katy wrote: "I'm kind of weird in that I love Victorian England, so maybe A Christmas Carol themed Christmas party would be fun."

Oh I like that idea! That would be a fun party to go to!


message 5: by Heather (new)

Heather (heatherbowman) | 705 comments While work continues to be awful, I will continue to escape into books at night to try and forget about it. Reading has been doing a pretty good job of making me forget and de-stress. I've been falling asleep reading the last few nights, and it's absolutely wonderful!

Did this thread go into the wrong folder? It looks like we're in the monthly challenge folder.

Finished
The Fellowship of the Ring by JRR Tolkien (a book that inspired a common phrase or idiom). I'm still loving my Lord of the Rings re-read. It's been quite awhile since I've read these, and I'd forgotten a lot so it's been like rediscovering Middle-earth.

DNF
Silver Bay by Jojo Moyes. I noped out when the baby whale died. I didn't like any of the characters enough to stick around for that. I think Jojo Moyes and I part ways here. The summaries always intrigue me, but the stories never hold my attention.

Reading
The Two Towers by JRR Tolkien
Here and Now and Then by Mike Chen
Zoo Nebraska: The Dismantling of an American Dream by Carson Vaughn

QOTW
I've been to a Harry Potter themed tea party on Halloween and that was great fun! I would love to go to a party that recreates Bilbo's 111th birthday party.


message 6: by Anne (new)

Anne (annefullercoxnet) | 200 comments I read all the comments from last week, but didn't actually check in. Most of my reading had been just light reading, so I wasn't invested enough to share. This week I read:

The Unexpected Guest- a novelization of one of Agatha Christie's plays. I would like to read the actual play. She did it again though, a great ending.
The Bookish Life of Nina Hill- this is light reading at it's best. I have never read anything by Waxman before, but promptly went an checked out her other two novels. Great reading for waiting rooms and the school pick up line.
Ashes on the Moor- another boy meets girl. I have now read three of Eden's books. The first one I didn't really like, but the synopsis of the second was enticing, so I read it and really liked it. I thought I'd give the this one a go to see if the first one of hers I read was unusual. This one was meh- so I am now done with Eden.
I have started reading for my youth committee again, and the next two were for that. I read:
The Owls Have Come to Take Us Away- this was a weird book. I young boy is convinced he has been abducted by aliens and that they put an implant in his belly. The whole thing is just strange. I don't even know if I would recommend it or not. If the kid was really into UFO's or really quirky I would probably recommend it.
The Haunting of Henry Davis- a young boy is being haunted by a boy that used to live in the same house and died of the Spanish flu. The narrator is the boy's best friend, and she is on a mission to end the haunting. It is a cute little book and I would probably recommend it.

QOTW: I can't even think right now (I'm not a big fan of parties). I'll get back to you once I've had some time to ponder.

Happy Reading!


message 7: by Anabell (last edited Sep 19, 2019 05:51AM) (new)

Anabell | 352 comments FYI this week is not under weekly check-ins but monthly challenge :-)

I finished my challenge yay!

First time I finished this early AND I finished my ATY in the same week. Yes I can use a book for both challenges but not every book is used both places.

So now I am planning next years challenges and books to save for those. I am thinking of doing a book for each year from 1920 to 2020. Looking at options at the moment.

I am in a hurry to update as I am on my way to work shortly so will update with books later and the QOTW. Will have to think about that one.


message 8: by Kenya (new)

Kenya Starflight | 615 comments Happy Thursday, y'all.

Not much to report, so check-in time, yay.

Books read this week:

How To: Absurd Scientific Advice for Common Real-World Problems -- another hilarious yet fascinating science book from Randall Munroe, author of the “xkdc” webcomic. This book is absolutely ridiculous but manages to be very educational as well.

Kick -- supernatural adventure story about the ghost of a young man who “rides” around in the bodies of criminals and scumbags after his death. A little repetitive at times, but still an enjoyable read.

Salt -- post-apocalyptic murder-mystery. Felt a little cliched and predictable at times, but still entertaining.

Currently Reading:

The Plague Dogs -- holy freak, this is grim... and here people complain about Watership Down being a grim read...
The Lust Lizard of Melancholy Cove

QOTW:

I'd love to attend a Harry Potter themed party, despite only being a casual fan of the books. Also a party that recreates Fairyland from The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making would be a LOT of fun.


message 9: by Linda (last edited Sep 19, 2019 06:17AM) (new)

Linda (linnola) | 37 comments Happy Thursday!

Finished:

I'm Not Her by Cara Sue Achterberg – This was a grab at the library, not for the challenge. I liked this “Freaky Friday” themed book. It’s interesting to read the persons thoughts on someone else’s life.

The Canterville Ghost by Oscar Wilde – PS #27. This was a short, cute ghost story.

The Dark Side by Danielle Steele – I enjoyed this easy read. Good story for a DS book.

The Boy in the Suitcase by Lene Kaaberbol – PS# 23 – A Book set in Scandinavia

Currently Reading:
I Heart London – BOTM for the I Heart series

Swine Not?: A Novel Pig Tale Swine Not? A Novel Pig Tale by Jimmy Buffett by Jimmy Buffet – PS#3. This was a prompt I wasn’t looking forward to. I don’t read autobiographies, memoirs, or don’t really care about a star/musician’s life. So thank you to Jimmy for writing a book about a pig. Swine Not? Is a very cute story.

I went to the library to pick up my holds, and grabbed a few more. A personal challenge is to read some classics or books on the 1001 To Read list. I grabbed Paul Auster – Invisible and Timbuktu; Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea; Margaret Atwood – The Robber Bride and Emma by Jane Austen

This morning I downloaded the e-book for the The Graveyard. There are so many fun/scary October BOTM reads that I need to start now to be able to finish them for Halloween!!

QOTW: I'm not a party person/planner, so I can't think of any. I'm very interested in what the creative people have to say:)


message 10: by Ellie (new)

Ellie (patchworkbunny) | 1080 comments Acorns keep hitting me on the head on my walk to the station each morning... They are massive this year and they blimmin hurt! Must be autumn. I'm at that point in my challenges where books read on a whim have no chance of fitting my remaining prompts, so I really need to sit down and work out a plan.

I finished Darkdawn which was a little disappointing. I am happy to have an ending but it felt like a lot of padding around a much shorter plot.

I listened to The Testaments for clothing/accessory on the cover. Loved it, different in tone to The Handmaid's Tale but I was gripped and I love Aunt Lydia's narrative.

And I read Web for posthumous. I didn't even think of John Wyndham for this prompt, so I was happy when I noticed there were two possible books of his I could use. It's not his finest work and like many posthumously published books, it feels a tad unpolished, but overall I liked it. Kind of a cozy horror!

Currently listening to The Ten Thousand Doors of January for my ATY rejects (portal fiction).

Just started reading The Giver of Stars for review and I'm hoping it'll be a book that I want turned into a film as I've been struggling more than I expected with that prompt. It's the new Jojo Moyes about the pack horse library project of the 1930s.

PS: 44/52 | ATY: 46/52 | GR: 99/100

QOTW:
I'm not really a party person, so something where I wouldn't be out of place curling up with a book. Maybe The Invisible Library for the Victorian aesthetic but with the option of going round stealing books all night and commanding drinks into my hand with The Language.


Raquel (Silver Valkyrie Reads) | 895 comments I was so confused when I saw this thread on my phone (under 'unread topics) and then came to computer to read it in a more leisurely fashion and couldn't find it! Took me a while to find it tucked away in the monthly thread. :-)

I'm finally getting back in my reading groove! Yay! Three books finished this week, which is just an average number for me, but I'm also in the middle of quite a few. (I had a bad flu over the weekend, and in an odd way, I think the enforced rest from that was helpful for energy and reading slump problems I'd been having overall.)

Finished Reading:
The Trials of Morrigan Crow Loved this so much, and can't believe I waited so long to read it! I think Jupiter is my most favorite character from the book...

Traitor's MasqueAlso enjoyed this political intrigue spin on Cinderella.

The Beast of Talesend This was okay, a light entertaining read, but I found the writing just okay, and am on the fence about whether the series is worth continuing.

Currently Reading:
Les Misérables Got the audio book back from the library again. (I usually have to wait one checkout cycle to get it again, so I have this head canon that one other patron and I have been switching off listening to this book all year...)

Henry and the Chalk DragonThis is a really great middle grade book that I need to get back to with more focus!

Zita the Spacegirl Loving this one so far! Zita's collecting such an adorable little rag-tag band, and I'm also finding myself really needing to know if everyone will be okay... My favorite bit has been(view spoiler)

Lock In I've been over my owned TBR several times recently as the voting for the 2020 ATY prompts is going on, and this one keeps jumping out at me as a 'why haven't I read this yet', so I decided it was time to just go for it, despite the giant pile of library books staring at me... Very interesting premise with hints of classic sci-fi and classic detective stories in the feel.

The Seventh Bride Started the audio of this one, and not really enjoying it, so I'm giving it a couple days to see if I get inspired to go back, or should just give up on it. I knew a Bluebeard retelling was risky...

DNF:
The Ordering of Love: The New and Collected Poems of Madeleine L'Engle I have a difficult relationship with poems, and despite a few *really* good lines, most the poems weren't holding my interest at all.

Valerian: The Complete Collection, Volume 1 Might try this again some other time, as the stories had some interesting elements, just weren't' holding my interest well at the moment.

QOTW:
This is such a great question that I won't do justice to on the spur of the moment! Off the top of my head, an Agatha Christie themed murder mystery night would be a lot of fun. I could imagine that putting together a party themed on The Martian could be fun (cook all the potato dishes!), and I'm trying to figure out what a Neverwhere party would look like because I love the book....


message 12: by Sara (new)

Sara | 1508 comments Heather wrote: "Did this thread go into the wrong folder? It looks like we're in the monthly challenge folder.

Whoops :) Thankfully, my partner-in-crime, Nadine, already fixed it :)


message 13: by Kyle (last edited Sep 19, 2019 06:36AM) (new)

Kyle Christopher (kce74) | 2 comments Hi everyone. I have just joined Goodreads, so my reading is really just beginning. However, I did want to respond to the QOTW.

I have always been struck by the party described in chapter two of The Great Gatsby. I can't decide if it would actually be a fun party to attend (probably not), but I always appreciated how well I could see and feel the scene in my head, even though F Scott Fitzgerald used sparse words and phrases to create it.


message 14: by Ellie (new)

Ellie (patchworkbunny) | 1080 comments Raquel wrote: "I could imagine that putting together a party themed on The Martian could be fun (cook all the potato dishes!)..."

As long as no one gets the idea of recreating the part where he first plants those potatoes...


message 15: by Laura (new)

Laura | 148 comments Really slow reading week for me... I've started packing up books and taking clothing and household items to charity bins. Getting ready for my move to Santa Fe! I think the next few weeks are going to be busy, busy, busy.

Challenge Progress: 44/50

Completed:
Three Women: "We don't remember what we want to remember. We remember what we can't forget." I think every woman has her own "me too" story, but these women's stories of desire (power, want, fulfillment, understanding...) are laid out in a brutal fashion. Fascinating and tragic.

Currently Reading: Lord of the Flies (a book with at least a million ratings on GR), Bitter Greens (a book with salty, sweet, bitter, or spicy in the title), The Testaments, The Institute, Shortest Way Home: One Mayor's Challenge and a Model for America's Future (a book with pop, sugar, or challenge in the title), Lab Girl (a book recommended by a celebrity you admire - Barack Obama), and The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History

QOTW: Oh, a Harry Potter-themed party sounds like fun! And I immediately thought about the Great Gatsby... the 1920s fashions are so beautiful. We've also already got Game of Thrones costumes. My (early seasons) Cersei is on point!


message 16: by Ellie (new)

Ellie (patchworkbunny) | 1080 comments Kyle wrote: "Hi everyone. I have just joined Goodreads, so my reading is really just beginning..."

Welcome to the group Kyle!


Raquel (Silver Valkyrie Reads) | 895 comments Ellie wrote: "Raquel wrote: "I could imagine that putting together a party themed on The Martian could be fun (cook all the potato dishes!)..."

As long as no one gets the idea of recreating the part where he fi..."


Good point. Making a mental note NOT to invite my husband's brothers if I throw this party. :-D :-D


message 18: by Johanne (last edited Sep 19, 2019 07:02AM) (new)

Johanne *the biblionaut* | 1294 comments Happy thursday!

Two-week check -in for me.
I have absolutely no clue on my status for challenges, because I like to keep my options open for which prompts the books can fill. I have managed to confuse myself, and I will need to get this sorted if I want to have a chance to finish. I think I need to make a different strategy next year.

I read:
Den blå portal by Linette Harpsøe New release. Danish fantasy. Solid but not mind-blowing.

Drengen på toppen af bjerget (The Boy at the Top of the Mountain) John Boyne.
What can I say. John Boyne you break my heart every time.

Ud og stjæle heste (Out Stealing Horses) by Per Petterson
One of those guiet books that sneaks under your skin and stays with you.

Dora Bruder by Patrick Modiano.
Weird little book. Modiano walks around Paris in the footsteps of a Jewish girl who went missing during WW2.

Havpaladset (The Sea Palace) by Anne Lise Marstrand-Jørgensen. Children´s book about a refugee girl. It was not a bad book, but I had higher expectations. The author writes great books for adults and I love the illustrator, so you can see how that made me expect more. It felt sort of detached emotionally, which is really weird, since I know the author is involved in helping refugees and she usually writes well. Possibly a case of not mastering the art of writing children´s lit.

Some comics/ graphic novels:
Gammelpot og Den Store Bombasto
Eventyret om Gammelpot og den troløse tjener
Gammelpot og den maskerede høvding
The Umbrella Academy, Vol. 1: The Apocalypse Suite

Some romance fluff:
Until November
Until Trevor
Falling Fast

Currently (actively) reading:
Færgen (Blood Cruise)
The Subtle Knife

QOTW:
I would love to participate in a Mad Hatter´s tea party. You can actually do that in London:
https://www.morganshotelgroup.com/ori...
And a Harry Potter themed one!
And Bilbo´s birthday party.

Edit: Oh I know!!! A tea party on the flying Finishing School in Gail Carriger´s series (Etiquette & Espionage).
As long as they are not out to poison me :)


message 19: by Johanne (new)

Johanne *the biblionaut* | 1294 comments Ellie wrote: "...I'm at that point in my challenges where books read on a whim have no chance of fitting my remaining prompts, so I really need to sit down and work out a plan..."

Haha, yes, exactly this!


message 20: by Cendaquenta (new)

Cendaquenta | 689 comments Short update this week, nothing really going on and only read two books.

Jade City - Reread in prep for the sequel. Slower-paced than I remembered but I really enjoyed it.

Jade War - As for this... just send my therapy bills to Fonda Lee. It messed me up, man. Spent the last ~150 pages in a state of permanent 😱.
I can't wait for the sequel but also I fear the sequel. And I'm 100% sure a certain event is going to come back around, bite the Kaul family in the butt and break them from within. 😭

Currently reading:

Bellman & Black - For a group read. Love it so far. Diane Setterfield is a genius.

The Ten Thousand Doors of January - I feel like I need this right now, and I'm claiming September as read-WTF-I-want month. Only one chapter in so haven't quite formed an impression yet.

QOTW: The Hobbit / Lord of the Rings. No question. I want to go to the Shire and have a low-key, jolly night out in the Green Dragon. Or to Lothlorien, to hang out in a treetop with snacks, harp music and the intellectual conversation of elves.


message 21: by Nadine (new)

Nadine Jones | 5484 comments Mod
A potato party sounds fun!! (We can leave out the bit about how he made the soil!!). I cook with potatoes a lot and there are so many dishes I could make. There’s the obvious: baked potatoes, scalloped potatoes, hash browns ... And then potato leek soup, gnocchi, potatoes & eggplant with cumin & turmeric, potatoes and green beans with pasta and pesto, rumpledethumps (aka colcannon), and on and on!!

I also need to add that autocorrect decided I really meant “rumple dry humps“ and I am cracking up now. What kind of person do you think I am, autocorrect???!!??


message 22: by Johanne (new)

Johanne *the biblionaut* | 1294 comments Kyle wrote: "Hi everyone. I have just joined Goodreads, so my reading is really just beginning. However, I did want to respond to the QOTW.

I have always been struck by the party described in chapter two of [b..."


Welcome Kyle!


message 23: by Samantha (last edited Sep 19, 2019 07:36AM) (new)

Samantha | 169 comments I had a good reading week with four finished books. One was for the challenge which leaves me with only 3 books left to complete it!

Finished:
Wildcard - I finished Warcross last week for the challenge and loved it. Unfortunately, I did not love this one as much. 3 stars

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society - I used this for prompt #13 - a book published posthumously (I can never spell this word!). I loved this book. It was beautifully written and just so charming. 5 stars

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Long Way Home - I read this for the Goodreads summer reading challenge. Graphic novels are just not my thing because I loved the TV series, but did not enjoy this at all. I did like being able to finish it in one sitting though!

Rewrite The Stars - I had an ARC of this book through NetGalley so it wasn't for this challenge. I wanted to love this book because I really enjoyed the other book I read by Emma Heatherington, but this one was only a 3 star read for me.

Challenge Progress:
Regular Challenge - 38/40
Advanced Challenge - 9/10
Total - 47/50

Currently Reading:
Dry - I'm listening to this for prompt #41 - a "cli-fi" book. I'm about a third of the way done with this and all I can say is that it's scary that this could actually happen.

The Turn of the Key - not using this for the challenge. I just started it so no opinion yet.

The Nanny at Number 43 - I got an ARC of this from BookSirens and started it this morning.

The Little Prince - I'll be reading this tonight for prompt #14 - a book you see someone reading on TV or in a movie. Sawyer read it on LOST.

QOTW - If you could attend a party/event that recreates the setting or atmosphere of a book, which book would you want it to be?
This one is easy for me. I'd love to attend a party themed around the parties that Jay Gatsby threw in The Great Gatsby. They always looked so glamorous and I loved the fashion from that era.


message 24: by Nadine (last edited Sep 19, 2019 07:18AM) (new)

Nadine Jones | 5484 comments Mod
The evenings have been cool and crisp, purple asters are in full bloom, and the local groundhogs are fattening up! Soon I’ll have to stop wearing flip flops :-(

This week I finished 5 books, one for this Challenge, so I am now 48/50.

Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Córdova - this was okay. It’s been just a few days and already I don’t remember much of it.

Unaccompanied poems by Javier Zamora - fantastic!

The Japanese Lover by Isabel Allende - meh. I used to love Allende but either I changed her or her writing changed.

Villette by Charlotte Brontë - ugh! FINALLY! I’m done!!! I’ve been chipping away at this book since July. Did. Not. Enjoy.

Undertow by Michael Buckley - the first of my two books with the same title. It was sort of a Romeo & Juliet retelling, with fish people. Might appeal to hardcore mermaid fans, but otherwise, nah. Hopefully my second Undertow is better.

QOTW

Such a tough question!!! My favorite books seem to be rather grim, and what does that say about me? I don’t know, but I don’t want to experience any of those settings!

I kind of like the idea of the end-of-season party in The Last House Guest (even though there was a murder - I’d like to be at a murder-free version, of course). I would like to be part of the exclusive group of rich people & locals who live in the beach town.

But a lot of the people in Miranda’s book seem like jerks (I guess I like books about jerks??) so maybe not that party. I really like the group of friends in Jill Shalvis’s romances, in particular I like the people in her Heartbreaker Bay series, and I think it’s nice how they all live near each other and get together in the local bar (owner by two of the brothers in the group), so I would like to be part of that. I wish I had a friend group like that irl and a neighborhood bar where I just effortlessly “belonged.”



OMG NO WAIT. I want to go to Johanne’s party on Mademoiselle Geraldine’s Flying Finishing School!! I will insist on sitting with Soap and Professor Braithwope, and then a fun (but safe) caper on the ship with Sophronia & Soap. I would also like to meet Captain Niall and Sidheag.


message 25: by Theresa (new)

Theresa | 1616 comments Anabell wrote: "FYI this week is not under weekly check-ins but monthly challenge :-)

I finished my challenge yay!

First time I finished this early AND I finished my ATY in the same week. Yes I can use a book f..."


Congratulations!

I still have 2 books each dor PS and AtY, all identified, and I just need to read them. Time to buckle down and get them out of the way.


message 26: by Dani (new)

Dani Weyand | 289 comments Hello from Columbus! What a week. I didn’t get any reading done the last two days, I was in an accident in Tuesday that likely totaled my car (a guy swerved to prevent hitting a vehicle in front of him that suddenly slammed on their breaks, striking me and sending me into the guardrail). I’m so sad, I loved that car AND I had plans to see my boyfriend tomorrow (he lives in Pittsburgh). What a bummer. I’m listening to Stardust on audiobook now and it’s lifting my spirits. Gaiman’s voice is so soothing.

The Labyrinth of the Spirits the last book in the Cemetery of Forgotten Books series, for the Marisha Pessl reading challenge. This was long and complex and I think left me with more questions than it answered. But the writing and imagery was so stunning that I absolutely loved it. Very modern gothic meets detective mystery. I love his writing so much!

Summer at Little Beach Street Bakery for a book about a hobby prompt. Baking is more of a career for the character than a hobby, but baking is my hobby so I’m making it fit. I read the first book last summer so I had forgotten some bits but it was easy to pick up on as I went. It’s a cute set of books, very lifetime movie chic lit kinda vibe. They make great beach reads.

I’ve read 115 books this year. 27/40; 5/10 for popsugar, 15/24 for book riot, 3/12 back to the classics, 11/37 Marisha Pessl’s challenge.


message 27: by Sheri (new)

Sheri | 725 comments Hi everyone!

Starting to get a bit burnt out from trying to do 4 challenges this year. I just want to be finished with them so I can read whatever I want without feeling guilty about it! (yes i know they're self imposed, but it's still pressure!).

this week I finished:
Taking Flight: From War Orphan to Star Ballerina - reading women book about an athlete. It was a short sweet read

War of the Realms - took some time over the weekned to burn through the entire nonsense that is the war of the realms arcs. I started some of it a while ago but i went through and finished the main arc and all the side stories. Of course a lot of it is scattered issues all over the place so I can't easily track it all on goodreads without getting into single issues.

Kim & Kim Vol. 1 - Partially was binging comics to clear out room so I could fit this on my Ipad, counts for Read Harder's comic by a lgbtq+ creator. It was good, I'd continue the series.

Currently reading: The Murmur of Bees - read harder own voices set in Mexico or Central America. The writing is good and everything, it's just kind of depressing so it's slow going. Keep reading comics or other books to give myself a break, making it even slower going.

QOTW:

I would love to visit a circus based on the Night Circus, or go to a party themed around one of the Midnight Dinners from it. The imagery in the book is so lovely, I just want to BE there. <3


message 28: by Nadine (new)

Nadine Jones | 5484 comments Mod
Dani how terrifying!! Are you ok? I am so sorry about your car; I get very attached to my car so I understand.


message 29: by Lynn (new)

Lynn (book_music_lvr) | 3153 comments Mod
Katy wrote: "I finished The Tournament of Blood as my book with an amateur detective. Not at all as gory as it sounds. Just good medieveral murder fun.

You definitely made me laugh out loud with that comment! :)



message 30: by Charlotte (new)

Charlotte Weber | 263 comments Happy Thursday all!

I only finished one book this week. I read The Last of August for a book with an amateur detective. It's the second book in the Charlotte Holmes series. I really enjoyed the first book but not this one so much. I gave it 3 stars but I was pretty confused through most of the book and the ending felt rushed. I had no idea what was going. I'm still going to continue with the series though and I hope the next book has more of a mystery and more explanations.

This puts me at 36/50 for the challenge.

QOTW: I love this question! There are so many great options. I immediately thought of a Jane Austen party like in Pride and Prejudice. I also love all of the other suggestions for Harry Potter (like the Yule Ball!), Bilbo's 111th birthday party, and a Gatsby party. That would be especially fun as we're about to hit the 20s again. Really, I would take any excuse to dress in costume or something exceptionally sparkly.


message 31: by Lynn (new)

Lynn (book_music_lvr) | 3153 comments Mod
Milena wrote:

QOTW:
This is a very clever question, and of course I don't have a clever answer. I will think about it and come back

But...that is a clever answer! :)



message 32: by Milena (new)

Milena (milenas) | 815 comments Dani, sorry to hear about your car, but glad you're OK.


message 33: by Milena (new)

Milena (milenas) | 815 comments Nadine, I feel for you on Vilette. I have been reading Middlemarch for like a month now, and I am still not at 50%. It's holding up all my other reading.


message 34: by Lynn (new)

Lynn (book_music_lvr) | 3153 comments Mod
Anabell wrote: "FYI this week is not under weekly check-ins but monthly challenge :-)

I finished my challenge yay!

First time I finished this early AND I finished my ATY in the same week. Yes I can use a book f..."


Congratulations!


message 35: by Lauren (last edited Sep 19, 2019 08:00AM) (new)

Lauren Oertel | 713 comments It's been a crazy week and I have a ton of things due on the 30th, so I'm really ready for it to be October.

This week I listened to The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo and I didn't care much for the "Hollywood gossip" aspects of it since I've never been into celebrities, but somehow that ending (pretty much the whole last hour of the book) had me in nonstop tears. Wow, I didn't know it would get to me like that! Good writing, even if (some) of the subject matter wasn't for me I guess?

I also listened to I Can't Date Jesus: Love, Sex, Family, Race, and Other Reasons I've Put My Faith in Beyoncé, which I enjoyed. I think I'll eventually read the memoir of every gay black man out that's available... this was number four or five? It's always good to get an understanding of other people, especially those who deal with various prejudices in their lives.

I listened to Feel Free: Essays and honestly it wasn't quite as good as I hoped. I enjoyed some of the topics more than others.

I'm currently reading a bunch of short story collections since I'm working on a short story contest (due on the 30th) and am trying to read as many examples as possible while I finish up my draft. I'm listening to Love in the Time of Cholera which isn't holding my attention well unfortunately, and I'm about to meet Stacey Abrams (possibly tonight, I'm giving her an award tomorrow night - yay! :) so I'm listening to her book Lead from the Outside: How to Build Your Future and Make Real Change right now. I'm so excited!

QOTW: Great question! I agree that the Harry Potter, The Night Circus, and Great Gatsby ones would be interesting. I'm also thinking the Cemetery of Forgotten Books from "The Shadow of the Wind" series could be cool. And this would be a weird one, but I liked the brothel house imagery in "Out of the Easy." I think it's mainly because I love New Orleans so much and the city makes a great setting for any book. I'll be back there in a few months and will be bringing a notebook to jot down ideas for a short story or novel that takes place there. :)


message 36: by Brandy (new)

Brandy B (bybrandy) | 258 comments Complete

The Secrets We Kept by Lara Prescott which I really liked, but was so close to a book I would have loved. So much important stuff happened off the page, though without any real introspection.

My Sister, the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite which I've read a lot of people on this thread being mildly disappointed in this whole year so I wasn't really expecting answers and introspection so I wasn't disappointed in it at all. It was mildly entertaining. It was quick. It checked the prompt I wanted. No complaints. I don't think, though it will stick with me long term.

QOTW:
Oh any 20s era locked room mystery thing. I don't really enjoy many Agatha Christie novels (too many characters introduced at once and I'm always like, "Wait, who was that? Huh?" but I thin that for a party that is totally the aesthetic I would go for.


message 37: by Milena (new)

Milena (milenas) | 815 comments Lauren wrote: "It's been a crazy week and I have a ton of things due on the 30th, so I'm really ready for it to be October.

This week I listened to The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo and I didn't..."


I am going to New Orleans next week, again. What a great idea for a party set there. Maybe I will start Out of the Easy right now, if it's available. I wanted to read a book set in Louisiana before or during the trip anyway.


message 38: by Drakeryn (new)

Drakeryn | 667 comments Whoa, it's Thursday already. Doesn't feel like a whole week.

Finished reading:

STET - A brief excerpt from a (fictional) textbook about ethics programming of self-driving cars. Basically, it's the trolley problem run by AI. If hitting someone is unavoidable, who do you pick? How do you pick?

Currently reading: I'm bouncing back and forth between multiple books, which (for me) is never a good sign. Gotta pick something and stick with it.

Alan Cole Is Not a Coward
Mother of Learning
Blackfish City
Wilder Girls (reread)

QotW: I'm going with The Maze Runner. I didn't think the book was that great, BUT a giant shifting maze with puzzles and secrets would make for really cool party games. When I was a kid, for one of my birthday parties, my mom made a treasure hunt where you had to decipher clues to find more clues to lead you to the buried treasure. I'm imagining that kind of thing but in a hedge maze. It would be the coolest.


message 39: by Sara (last edited Sep 19, 2019 08:30AM) (new)

Sara | 1508 comments I've been inspired to dig deeper with the QOTW after reading so many of your answers!

I am changing mine to a Night Court themed party (no, not the show, the one from A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas).

“It was the most beautiful place I’d ever seen. Whatever building we were in had been perched atop one of the gray-stoned mountains. The hall around us was open to the elements, no windows to be found, just towering pillars and gossamer curtains, swaying in that jasmine-scented breeze…lush plants or thick rugs scattered over the moonstone floor.”

-Sarah J. Maas, A Court of Mist and Fury


The room descriptions, the clothes, the freaking bathroom sounds AMAZING! Add in a little visit from Rhys and I'm all set! Also, this kind of setting would be much more my speed than the 1920's speakeasy...since I don't dance lol :)


message 40: by Anne (new)

Anne Happy Thursday! 49/50

Completed:
Every Breath You Take by Mary Higgins Clark was one her Under Suspicion series. It’s funny, I don’t like most of her books, but the Under Suspicion series are a favorite. We learn that the 68 society matron, who was thrown from the roof of a the Met, was not killed by her 40 something year old boyfiend/ person trainer.

Sconed to Death was a quick cozy about a writer’s retreat. Meh.

Norman Finkelstein’s The Emperor General: A Biography of Douglas MacArthur was an outstanding biography of Douglas MacArthur, a military leader in three wars. Predictably I loved MacArthur more after reading it and still think Truman was a schmuck.

Julie Kibler’s Home for Erring and Outcast Girls is interesting. It’s well written. I often hate the modern historical fiction take on the home for unwed mother’s books because it turns into church bashing or havens for abuse. Of the three female protagonists, two have thrived thanks to church homes. The male characters seem to be fairly superficially written and the story moves pretty slowly at times.

In Progress
Ruth Ware’s In a Dark, Dark Wood bodes the question – why had I not read this yet! As someone who has gone to more than my fair share of former boyfriends’ weddings, Nora’s trip to a former BF’s weekend hen party, where she learns that the bride to be is marrying her ex-boyfriend who is still the object of her desire is fantastic. My only complaint is that because I have the audio book, I can’t read faster than the speaker. Really, really good! (Oh, and apparently someone murdered someone and Nora is trying to recall what happened from her hospital bed.)

QOTW book event

Eek – I read so many suspense thrillers and murders, that I’m thinking of events to avoid!

I definitely don’t want to visit the island in Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None.


message 41: by Johanne (new)

Johanne *the biblionaut* | 1294 comments Alright Nadine, I'm off to buy an airship, anyone else want to join the party?


message 42: by Sarah (new)

Sarah (sezziy) | 833 comments @Johanne my typical introverted gut reaction to your airship party is how would I be able to leave early 😂


message 43: by Cendaquenta (new)

Cendaquenta | 689 comments Lay in a good supply of parachutes, I suppose...


message 44: by Johanne (new)

Johanne *the biblionaut* | 1294 comments hahaha! yes I'll remember those. Or you could arrive in your own smaller dirigible :)


message 45: by Bree (new)

Bree (breemw) | 92 comments Hi everyone! I didn't read much this week and I honestly have no idea how. Nothing's really grabbing me, I guess.

Sissy: A Coming-of-Gender Story: oh, this is why. I kept putting this down and going to do other things. Their story is amazing, but the writing left a lot to be desired. I really don't want to read entire emails/speeches in a memoir. And oof, all that unacknowledged white/class privilege.

Bad Feminist: I wish I'd read this back when it first came out. By now I'm pretty sure I've read almost all of it somewhere else on the internet, and all the references to Bill Cosby become uncomfortable in 2019.

Binti: I loved this!! I thought the world was so well done. I can't wait until my library hold comes in for the next one.

DNF:
The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet (audio): I listened to this for about half an hour but really couldn't get into the narration. It was oddly paced and dull. I'll probably try this book again in print sometime.

Currently reading:
Lirael
Red Sister
Child Star
Double Love

QOTW: I'd really like to go to a party like the ones in The Lies of Locke Lamora. I haven't read that book in years and can't remember if it's even that book or the second one, but those parties have stayed with me so long because they sounded AMAZING!


message 46: by Shannon (new)

Shannon | 456 comments It's starting to cool off here in North Texas! When I say "cool off," I mean the high is 88 today and then low-90s the rest of the week. I'll take what I can get!

I seem to battling my depression and anxiety (as well as my busy schedule) right now, so I'm shocked I've actually finished a book this past week. It's mostly because it's the book I read for work (and could, therefore, read at work).

I'm fairly certain I won't make it through the whole challenge, but we'll see what I get done over Thanksgiving and winter break.

Completed:
Brain Rules: 12 Principles for Surviving and Thriving at Work, Home, and School by John Medina: I couldn't force this into any open PS prompts, but I decided to slide it into Modern Mrs. Darcy as "a book about a topic that interests you." It was well written and definitely interesting, but I think Medina had some trouble treading the line between "too scientific" and "ah, yes, laypeople will be able to understand this!"

Currently Reading:
Under Wildwood by Colin Meloy: A book by a musician

Aesop's Fables: A book that inspired a common phrase or idiom (so many--"birds of a feather flock together" was in one of the fables I read last night)

QOTW:

I really love this question! The Night Circus absolutely jumped into my head for this--something inspired by the circus or the midnight parties would be incredible.

I've wanted to attend the parties from Wildwood Dancing since I first read the book--the fairy creatures, the conversations, the food, the gowns! I want it all! Juliet Marillier's descriptions have always stuck with me.

I would also LOVE to attend a party inspired by a Redwall banquet. The food descriptions always made me hungry and it just seemed like such a cozy, loving place (when they weren't battling or something). I have The Redwall Cookbook, so I may actually be able to swing something like that...


message 47: by Stacey (last edited Sep 19, 2019 02:07PM) (new)

Stacey | 400 comments Happy Thursday Guys! :)

I slowed down on my reading again this week but I sort of expected that because I read 2 books that I wasn't really looking forward to a whole lot and because one of them was a more serious, thought provoking book (those types of non-fiction books always take me longer to get through). The third book that I'm reading now is another that's not really my thing either! I'm glad that I'm knocking out some of my less anticipated books towards the start of my challenge though and I have enjoyed some more than I expected to! :)

I'm up to 20/53 on the Popsugar Challenge now! I'm really happy with this progress since I started in August.

Read This Week

Bittersweet by Sarah Ockler ⭐️⭐️⭐️ for 22) A Book with a title that contains "salty", "sweet", "bitter" or "spicy" - To sum up, this was basically a lot like what a YA Hallmark Christmas movie might look like. There were parts I loved and parts I didn't. I think the protagonist here might just be the most fickle person I've ever read about and that was incredibly frustrating, especially because she seems so sure of herself at times! There were also a few gaps in the writing (event wise), more things that I would have liked included/explained. Also, I now want a cupcake. :3

My Lovely Wife in the Psych Ward A Memoir by Mark Lukach ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ for 40) Your favourite prompt from a past POPSUGAR reading challenge - 40a) 2015: A Memoir (Even though I generally dislike reading memoirs, I wanted to challenge myself.) - I rarely read non-fiction and seldom enjoy it as much as fiction when I do but I liked this book, especially the second half, even though it was sad and heartbreaking at times. This is a very emotional, vividly detailed memoir about something that often touches our lives but that we don't always understand. It really portrays how much mental illness can interfere with our day to day lives and it's thought provoking about how it can and/or should be handled. It's a reminder that illness is not always an exact science and that often, medical professionals don't have all of the answers. It's a story about the process of learning to adjust and cope as a couple and it's redemptive in nature because of all the experience and because there's definitely a sense that things are getting better.

Currently Reading

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest (#3) by Stieg Larsson for 13) A Book published posthumously - I didn't really care too much for the first 2 books in the series (pretty sure I gave them ⭐️⭐️) but I was short on options I liked for the posthumous prompt and wanted to eventually finish out the series anyways just to see how Salander gets her revenge on everyone. Unsurprisingly, I'm about 200 pages in and I still feel like very little has happened at this point! This is a long one (close to 700pgs) and if this book is anything like the other 2, I'm expecting it to take a while longer still to get to the interesting parts of the story. At least there haven't been any annoying asides of math, science or economics yet, haha!

The Name of the Wind (#1) by Patrick Rothfuss - boyfriend & I are up to 85% on it this week AND we finally read a very exciting/anticipated part of the story! It was definitely something I didn't see coming at all, but am enjoying it! =)

QotW

Initially I thought that maybe I'd love to meet all of the dragons & their handlers in Naomi Novik's His Majesty's Dragon at some kind of meet and greet event but the question deals with a real life party/event so that's a no. Even if I could step into an alternate dimension where this existed, I think despite how amazing meeting all the dragons and seeing their special harnesses would be, the setting would be a little bit underwhelming (and could be stinky or bloody, haha!) so my answer is definitely going to be...

I would totally LOVE to go to a A Gathering of Shadows themed event & party based on the "Element Games" in that book, oh my goodness! I think that it would be SO neat! It's partially set in a parallel version of the universe (that includes magic), at a magician's tournament where two-three magicians at a time, choose certain elements and battle to break each others' "plates" (armor sections) in creative ways by manipulating their chosen elements within an arena with obstacles. If that were to be replicated in the real world, I could just imagine it might be something like a futuristic day at a medieval times except with "magicians" and a ton of special effects and illusions instead of knights with medieval weapons. I can visualize each contender wearing a holographic set of armor and seeing the plates disappear as they're hit! My mind would be totally blown at all the creative manipulation of the elements to try and attack or defend during the course of the tournament (it was already pretty fantastic reading about it)! Plus a fantastic party/parade afterwards! (Kind of thinking it would be an amazing movie now too, haha!) The adrenaline would be pumping & of course, the hubbub leading up to and during the event and the afterparty would be so much fun! Plus, I could just imagine all the unique food!

I have book #3 A Conjuring of Light planned for this year and now I'm really excited to read it soon! :P So far it's a fantasy series that I'm really enjoying! It started off more slowly, although still kept my attention but the action just keeps progressing more and more and more as the series continues! I'm definitely finding that certain portions of the books would make me call them page-turners! I made the mistake of reading them before bed and ended up sleeping much less some nights! Haha!


message 48: by Ashley (new)

Ashley | 159 comments Kyle wrote: "Hi everyone. I have just joined Goodreads, so my reading is really just beginning. However, I did want to respond to the QOTW.

I have always been struck by the party described in chapter two of [b..."


Welcome Kyle!!


message 49: by Ashley (new)

Ashley | 159 comments Good Afternoon!

I didn't make a ton of progress this week. Just chipping away at a few books and hope that I can get at least one read before next Thursday. I'm looking ahead to my October creepy, thriller, witchy picks and can't seem to focus on what I currently am reading.

Finished:

To All the Boys I've Loved Before for a book with LOVE in the title. I enjoyed this a lot. I've seen the movie, so I knew what to expect. I do want to read the next one before the second movie comes out in February. I will also stand by what I said last week, I like movie Kitty a lot more than book Kitty.

Currently Reading:

The Power for a book about someone with a superpower. I'm still loving this. It's just an interesting concept and I really like the changing focus on a few of the different characters.

The Time Traveler's Wife for a book with at least one million ratings on Goodreads. I've been so lazy every night that I have only gotten like 50 pages in. They are 50 good pages but I wish I was further in the book.

QOTW:

So many good answers so far. I'd also love to visit Hogwarts (probably during the Yule Ball) and The Night Circus. I would also love to go to the Netherfield Ball. I love Elizabeth and Darcy and to get to see their dance there and experience the whole night would be pretty magical.


message 50: by Lauren (new)

Lauren Oertel | 713 comments Milena wrote: "Lauren wrote: "It's been a crazy week and I have a ton of things due on the 30th, so I'm really ready for it to be October.

This week I listened to [book:The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo|3262033..."


Oh how exciting - I hope it's a great trip! And yes, "Out of the Easy" would be a good way to get in the NOLA mood before you get there. ;)


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