First Lines Fridays: December 8, 2017

first-lines-fridays

First Lines Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers hosted by Wandering Words. What if instead of judging a book by its cover, its author or its prestige, we judged it by its opening lines?

  • Pick a book off your shelf (it could be your current read or on your TBR) and open to the first page
  • Copy the first few lines, but don’t give anything else about the book away just yet – you need to hook the reader first
  • Finally… reveal the book!

First Lines:

I suppose a lot of teenage girls feel invisible sometimes, like they just disappear. Well, that’s me — Cammie the Chameleon. But I’m luckier than most because, at my school, that’s considered cool.

Interested? Scroll down for the cover and summary!

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I’d Tell You I Love You, But Then I’d Have to Kill You by Ally Carter
(Gallagher Girls, book 1)

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Cammie Morgan is a student at the Gallagher Academy for Exceptional Young Women, a fairly typical all-girls school — that is, if every school taught advanced martial arts in PE and the latest in chemical warfare in science, and students received extra credit for breaking CIA codes in computer class. The Gallagher Academy might claim to be a school for geniuses but it’s really a school for spies.

Even though Cammie is fluent in fourteen languages and capable of killing a man in seven different ways, she has no idea what to do when she meets an ordinary boy who thinks she’s an ordinary girl. Sure, she can tap his phone, hack into his computer, or track him through town with the skill of a real “pavement artist” — but can she maneuver a relationship with someone who can never know the truth about her?

Cammie Morgan may be an elite spy-in-training, but in her sophomore year, she’s on her most dangerous mission-falling in love.

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November 2017 Wrap-Up

Oh, man! This was such a good month for me reading-wise! I could have done better at actually blogging, but I’m not even bothered because I’m doing so well right now.

Non-Reading Stuff

As far as my health and such goes, the month started off pretty badly, but it’s really improving now. I finally got new meds after my old ones were recalled (blah blah, kidneys matter, apparently) so I’m no longer in constant pain and I can eat normal foods and I’m even getting my appetite back. Hurray! (Also they shoved a camera down my throat, fun fun fun.)

Mental health has been doing better lately, too! I have left the house on 3 separate occasions this month, which anyone who has paid any attention to my tumblr blog knows is a record for any month in the past couple years. I even went into a public place during 2 of those trips outside (not counting the doctor’s office). And, I’ve even been letting people into the house. Only 2 so far, but that’s still a huge deal for me. I couldn’t even let my own mother visit for a long time there, and she’s been over 3 different times this month! Ha!

Oh, also, for those who remember me shaving my head several months back and then proceeding to complain as it grew out because it kept trying to become a mullet:  I got a real haircut and the mullet is dead!

So you can see why I’m not going to beat myself up about not remembering to blog regularly. Now if only my allergies would fuck off… I’m developing a vicious hatred of tissues.

Reading Stuff

I read 18 books in November, and of those I finished 16.
You can view this list of books and my fave/least fave things about them here.

The last week or so of the month I hit a bit of a reading slump, but to be honest I expected it, and the good news is:  I’m already coming out of it! In fact, I’m having to force myself to be typing up my wrap-up instead of reading…

Aaaaand…. My 16 completed books from November officially puts me 5 books from my goal of 75 for the year!

Those of you who were reading my blog around summertime might remember that even though I originally set my Goodreads goal at 75, in summer I lowered it to 50 because I was having so much trouble with my mental health and reading, and I didn’t want to further discourage myself by massively missing my goal. Well after I did so well in October, I decided to go ahead and return to my original goal, which I am 100% confident I can meet (and surpass!) before the end of the year.

Blogging Stuff

I haven’t been doing great at blogging, as I mentioned. Mostly I get so caught up with other things I just forget, but I’m going to be trying harder for December.

I did at least manage to occasionally post for the book memes I follow (which you can find in their respective tags in the sidebar if you are on WordPress) and a Dedication Spotlight, as well as some quote posts and rating posts for all the books I read (links to those categories in the sidebar).

The thing that’s really been bothering me is I haven’t been reviewing at all lately. Partially that’s because I’ve been rereading some books from years ago, and I don’t like to review rereads or classics for various (probably dumb) reasons. I also have trouble when I’m reading really quickly, like with the Rick Riordan books. I don’t take notes when I’m reading that fast, and even if I did I wouldn’t want to stop and review anything because I want to jump right to the next book.

But honestly, I was having trouble reviewing already anyway. I’m not sure why… I finish a book with the full intent to review it, and then find myself with absolutely nothing to say… I’m hoping it was just a case of block, or even just because I wasn’t in the right headspace. If not, I haven’t the foggiest idea how to solve this one. I don’t want to give up on reviewing entirely because I actually like it when I can do it, but I guess we shall see how it goes in December.

Is there something you would like to see (or see more of) on the blog? Let me know! And if you have your own monthly wrap-ups I’d love some links! 🙂 Hope all y’all had good Novembers!

November 2017 Reading Wrap-Up

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Gregor the Overlander by Suzanne Collins
(Underland Chronicles, book 1)
Rating:  ★★★★☆
Review:  No
Reading Dates:  November 3 – 4
Read Count:  3
Favorite Thing:  Ripred being a little shit.
Least Favorite Thing:  Henry. Blah. Dickhead.

I woke up in the middle of the night with an urge to reread this series, and seeing as I have poor impulse control, I immediately arranged for my husband to go get them all for me from the library.

I know these books are Middle Grade so a few things are a bit silly, like a guy called Sandwich, but the story itself is quality and I recommend it to anyone who likes a fun fantasy adventure.

My Posts About Gregor the Overlander


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Gregor and the Prophecy of Bane by Suzanne Collins
(Underland Chronicles, book 2)
Rating:  ★★★★☆
Review:  No
Reading Dates:  November 5
Read Count:  3
Favorite Thing:  Twitchtip. I miss her already.
Least Favorite Thing:  Please read this in your most disgusted tone, while screwing up your face as if you smell something foul:  Shiners.

Gregor has a lot more self-restraint that I do when it comes to not yelling at people…

I have to admit though, reading this book is a bit more difficult once one knows what’s going to happen in the next books!

My Posts About Gregor and the Prophecy of Bane


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Gregor and the Curse of the Warmbloods by Suzanne Collins
(Underland Chronicles, book 3)
Rating:  ★★★★☆
Review:  No
Reading Dates:  November 6
Read Count:  3
Favorite Thing:  Gregor grooming Lapblood.
Least Favorite Thing:  The descriptions of some of the grosser things like plague victims and Gregor’s acid toes…

I read this whole book in like 2 hours! I surprised myself lol I didn’t intend to read it that quickly, but since it’s middle grade and the story is pretty engaging, I zipped right through it.

My Posts About Gregor and the Curse of the Warmbloods


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Gregor and the Marks of Secret by Suzanne Collins
(Underland Chronicles, book 4)
Rating:  ★★★★☆
Review:  No
Reading Dates:  November 6
Read Count:  3
Favorite Thing:  Boots’ fucking princess scepter lol
Least Favorite Thing:  The Bane. He skeeves me out.

Oh man I had forgotten that this book is way sadder than the others! 😦

My Posts About Gregor and the Marks of Secret


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Gregor and the Code of Claw by Suzanne Collins
(Underland Chronicles, book 5)
Rating:  ★★★★☆
Review:  No
Reading Dates:  November 6 – 7
Read Count:  3
Favorite Thing:  Ripred and Lizzie. It’s too sweet!
Least Favorite Thing:  I hate one very specific thing about the ending, but only read about it if you don’t care about spoilers.
[start] I just hate that they go back to the Overland permanently as if they don’t obviously and completely belong in the Underland! That has literally always bugged me.  Sometimes I just pretend that and the thing with Ares never happened. [end]

I really love this series, I’m so glad it was recommended to me back in high school.

My Posts About Gregor and the Code of Claw


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Mansfield Park by Jane Austen
Rating:  ★★★★☆
Review:  No
Reading Dates:  November 8 – 14
Read Count:  2
Favorite Thing:  The end when Jane wraps everything up. I like the way she does it.
Least Favorite Thing:  The way literally no one ever listened to Fanny about her own feelings?????

I’m glad I reread it, I think I even liked it more than Sense & Sensibility now.

My Posts About Mansfield Park


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The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan
(Percy Jackson and the Olympians, book 1)
Rating:  ★★★☆☆
Review:  No
Reading Dates:  November 13 – 15
Read Count:  2
Favorite Thing:  Puppyyyyy!
Least Favorite Thing:  Come on, as if I was going to say anything other than Gabe? Please.

It’s been a long time since I first read this book and I admit to not enjoying it as much this time around, but I think that’s only because it’s geared more for younger readers and sometimes I have trouble with the rhythm of Middle Grade books. I’m glad I’m going to finally get down to going through all of Rick’s books though.

My Posts About The Lightning Thief


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The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan
(Percy Jackson and the Olympians, book 2)
Rating:  ★★★☆☆
Review:  No
Reading Dates:  November 15
Read Count:  2
Favorite Thing:  lol Tyson
Least Favorite Thing:  Clarisse not knowing when to shut her damn mouth…

Oddly enough I remembered almost nothing from this one except for Tyson… So rereading it felt more like reading it for the first time. I have a feeling the rest of them will be like this too.

My Posts About The Sea of Monsters


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The Titan’s Curse by Rick Riordan
(Percy Jackson and the Olympians, book 3)
Rating:  ★★★☆☆
Review:  No
Reading Dates:  November 15
Read Count:  2
Favorite Thing:  Bessiiiiiiie!
Least Favorite Thing:  I actually find Nico incredibly annoying…

Would it kill anyone to stop being cryptic? Like wow. Just answer a question somebody!

My Posts About The Titan’s Curse


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The Battle of the Labyrinth by Rick Riordan
(Percy Jackson and the Olympians, book 4)
Rating:  ★★★☆☆
Review:  No
Reading Dates:  November 15 – 16
Read Count:  2
Favorite Thing:  Poseidon showing up for Percy’s birthday just to be a drama queen. “Blowfish?” lol
Least Favorite Thing:  STILL NOBODY CAN JUST ANSWER A FUCKING QUESTION OR SHARE INFORMATION!

So far this is my favorite of the series. I’m wondering if they will just keep getting better or what.

My Posts About The Battle of the Labyrinth


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The Last Olympian by Rick Riordan
(Percy Jackson and the Olympians, book 5)
Rating:  ★★★☆☆
Review:  No
Reading Dates:  November 16 – 17
Read Count:  2
Favorite Thing:  Percy being like “acknowledge your fucking children assholes” at all the gods.
Least Favorite Thing:  Guess what. It’s still the fact that no one will answer a damn question. I’m so annoyed.

My Posts About The Last Olympian


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The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan
(Heroes of Olympus, book 1)
Rating:  ★★★☆☆
Review:  No
Reading Dates:  November 17 – 18
Read Count:  1
Favorite Thing:  Leooo! Precious little fireball.
Least Favorite Thing:  It took them way too long to figure certain things out… Like everyone who spoke to them alluded to 2 or 3 specific things and they didn’t get it until the very end? Oookay.

My Posts About The Lost Hero


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The Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan
(Heroes of Olympus, book 2)
Rating:  ★★★☆☆
Review:  No
Reading Dates:  November 18 – 19
Read Count:  1
Favorite Thing:  Ella/Tyson lololololol
Least Favorite Thing:  When Octavian talks I roll my eyes so hard I get a headache…

I’m not sure if this one was better than the first one (Lost Hero), but I was really glad to be back to Percy so I enjoyed it more.

My Posts About The Son of Neptune


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The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan
(Heroes of Olympus, book 3)
Rating:  ★★★☆☆
Review:  No
Reading Dates:  November 19 – 20
Read Count:  1
Favorite Thing:  “If they’d let women warriors into their cult, the might have learned some common sense.”
Least Favorite Thing:  Literally only Leo talks about things, everyone else is like “I’ll explain later” and “we can talk about it later” and “I hope it’s not what I think it is” but they never talk about it!!

My Posts About The Mark of Athena


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The House of Hades by Rick Riordan
(Heroes of Olympus, book 4)
Rating:  ★★★☆☆
Review:  No
Reading Dates:  November 20 – 21
Read Count:  1
Favorite Thing:  Bob + Small Bob (I’m not crying, you’re crying.)
Least Favorite Thing:  Gaea is so fucking annoying…

IS IT TOO MUCH TO ASK FOR LITTLE NICO TO GET A DAMN HUG????? My poor little spooky baby…

My Posts About The House of Hades


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The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan
(Heroes of Olympus, book 5)
Rating:  ★★★☆☆
Review:  No
Reading Dates:  November 21 – 23
Read Count:  1
Favorite Thing:  Nico gets to be happy!!!!!
Least Favorite Thing:  Zeus the douche…

I’ve got all the warm fuzzies from the ending of this book. Thanks, Rick.

My Posts About The Blood of Olympus


In Progress

First Lines Fridays: December 1, 2017

first-lines-fridays

First Lines Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers hosted by Wandering Words. What if instead of judging a book by its cover, its author or its prestige, we judged it by its opening lines?

  • Pick a book off your shelf (it could be your current read or on your TBR) and open to the first page
  • Copy the first few lines, but don’t give anything else about the book away just yet – you need to hook the reader first
  • Finally… reveal the book!

First Lines:

Nerve thrum and screaming blood, wild and churning and chasing and devouring and terrible and terrible and terrible —

Interested? Scroll down for the cover and summary!

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Dreams of Gods & Monsters by Laini Taylor
(Daughter of Smoke & Bone, book 3)

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Two worlds are poised on the brink of a vicious war. By way of a staggering deception, Karou has taken control of the chimaera’s rebellion and is intent on steering its course away from dead-end vengeance. The future rests on her.

When the brutal angel emperor brings his army to the human world, Karou and Akiva are finally reunited – not in love, but in a tentative alliance against their common enemy. It is a twisted version of their long-ago dream, and they begin to hope that it might forge a way forward for their people. And, perhaps, for themselves.

But with even bigger threats on the horizon, are Karou and Akiva strong enough to stand among the gods and monsters?

The New York Times bestselling Daughter of Smoke & Bone trilogy comes to a stunning conclusion as – from the streets of Rome to the caves of the Kirin and beyond – humans, chimaera, and seraphim strive, love, and die in an epic theater that transcends good and evil, right and wrong, friend and enemy.

First Lines Fridays: November 24, 2017

first-lines-fridays

First Lines Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers hosted by Wandering Words. What if instead of judging a book by its cover, its author or its prestige, we judged it by its opening lines?

  • Pick a book off your shelf (it could be your current read or on your TBR) and open to the first page
  • Copy the first few lines, but don’t give anything else about the book away just yet – you need to hook the reader first
  • Finally… reveal the book!

First Lines:

When Jeff Greene was in second grade, seven and a half years old, he got home from school one Tuesday afternoon in early March, and found a note from his mother, saying that she had gone away and would not be coming back.

Interested? Scroll down for the cover and summary!

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A Solitary Blue by Cynthia Voigt
(The Tillerman Cycle, book 3)

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Jeff Greene was only seven when Melody, his mother, left him with his reserved, undemonstrative father, the Professor. So when she reenters his life years later with an invitation to spend the summer with her in Charleston, Jeff is captivated by her free spirit and warmth, and he eagerly looks forward to returning for another visit the following year.

But Jeff’s second summer in Charleston ends with a devastating betrayal, and he returns to his father wounded almost beyond bearing. But out of Jeff’s pain grows a deepening awareness of the unexpected and complicated ways of love and loss and of family and friendship — and the strength to understand his father, his mother, and especially himself.

Thursday Quotables: November 23, 2017

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This weekly feature is the place to highlight a great quote, line, or passage discovered during your reading each week; whether it’s something funny, startling, gut-wrenching, or just really beautifully written.


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Nico hesitated. He wasn’t used to getting a direct answer, without games or riddles or quests.

I chose this quote for Thursday Quotables because it is the exact thing I’ve been complaining about this whole past week of reading the demigod books. Like just answer a question people!


Summary:

Though the Greek and Roman crewmembers of the Argo II have made progress in their many quests, they still seem no closer to defeating the earth mother, Gaea. Her giants have risen—all of them—and they’re stronger than ever. They must be stopped before the Feast of Spes, when Gaea plans to have two demigods sacrificed in Athens. She needs their blood—the blood of Olympus—in order to wake.

The demigods are having more frequent visions of a terrible battle at Camp Half-Blood. The Roman legion from Camp Jupiter, led by Octavian, is almost within striking distance. Though it is tempting to take the Athena Parthenos to Athens to use as a secret weapon, the friends know that the huge statue belongs back on Long Island, where it “might” be able to stop a war between the two camps.

The Athena Parthenos will go west; the Argo II will go east. The gods, still suffering from multiple personality disorder, are useless. How can a handful of young demigods hope to persevere against Gaea’s army of powerful giants? As dangerous as it is to head to Athens, they have no other option. They have sacrificed too much already. And if Gaea wakes, it is game over.


Thank you Bookshelf Fantasies for this fun book meme!

What Are You Reading Wednesdays: November 22, 2017

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What Are You Reading Wednesdays #WAYRW is a weekly feature on It’s A Reading Thing. Everyone is welcome to participate.

Grab the book you are currently reading and answer three questions:

  1. What’s the name of your current read?
  2. Go to page 34 in your book or 34% in your eBook and share a couple of sentences.
  3. Would you like to live in the world that exists within your book? Why or why not?

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  1. The Blood of Olympus (Heroes of Olympus, book 5) by Rick Riordan
  2. Piper didn’t want to get yelled at by a three-legged table.
  3. No way, man. I don’t have the energy for that world!

 

WWW Wednesdays: November 22, 2017

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Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at Should be Reading and revived on Taking on a World of Words. Just answer the three W’s!

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


21863322Currently Reading:  The Blood of Olympus (Heroes of Olympus, book 5) by Rick Riordan

I’ve only just now started this one, like I’m still on the first page, but I’m very excited! Only I have to admit, I can’t see how they’re going to solve all their problems and I’m very worried about that.

Also, I’m kind of hoping they’ll all get a vacation after this… The poor demigods deserve some R&R big time! Honestly I don’t know how they keep going, I would have been done with the gods and their errands of doom like 9 books ago for sure. I get tired just witnessing Percy & Co. constantly go-go-going and fighting and struggling.

Recently Finished:  Percy Jackson and the Olympians & Heroes of Olympus // Rick Riordan

I’ve been going with these books non-stop for a week, finishing at least one a day. Honestly, I’m starting to have dreams set in the same world when I take breaks to sleep! I admit to being a little worried about the book hangover I may wind up with when I finally finish all the books, but obviously I’m not worried enough to stop.

26252859Reading Next:  The Hidden Oracle (The Trials of Apollo, book 1) by Rick Riordan

So according to the internet, The Trials of Apollo is a sequel series ot Heroes of Olympus, so even though Rick has 2 other series out as well, I’m going to jump to this one next.

I haven’t decided yet if I will read the Kane Chronicles or Magnus Chase books… I’m worried I won’t enjoy them as much after spending so much time with the Greek/Roman gods and the demigod characters in this group of stories. I may decide to keep them in the TBR and just take a break from Rick Riordan’s books so that I’m a little fresher when I do read them. Who knows.