Musing Monday: October 16, 2017

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Musing Mondays is a weekly meme, hosted by Ambrosia at The Purple Booker, that asks you to choose one of the following prompts to answer:

I’m currently reading…
Up next I think I’ll read…
I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
I can’t wait to get a copy of…
I wish I could read ____, but…
I blogged about ____ this past week…

THIS WEEK’S RANDOM QUESTION: Do you like or dislike memoirs?


I don’t know exactly which prompt this fits under best, but basically I think I’m going to try reading John Green’s new book, Turtles All The Way Down. I read his other books, and while they weren’t terrible and I enjoyed some parts of them, ultimately I outgrew the stage where I enjoyed them quite quickly. I got tired of “mentally ill girl captivates boring white boy who learns stuff about life through his love of her quirkiness” and other related tropes involving teens and a mysterious lack of brown/black people…

But now I’m wondering, since John Green is or was active in the online book community (as well as others) he probably would have seen some of the criticisms of his works. Sarah J. Maas did, Maggie Stiefvater did. Maggie made apologies to her readers for the lack of POC and the insensitive handling of POC in The Raven Cycle when it was called out. Sarah J. Maas got sensitivity readers and made more efforts with her newest book. So did John Green hear his  readers and understand and try to improve?

I tried to find out from reviewers and such, but so far all I’m seeing are people who are already huge fans of his novels fangirling and people who don’t like him a bit talking about how they won’t be reading it. I think it might be too soon to find someone who can give me answers to this question I have. (If you’ve seen anyone talking about it, please please link me to it!)

So since my library has it anyway, I put it on hold. I’m behind a few people in line, but I’m in no hurry. I just want to satisfy my curiosity and since I’ve yet to see anyone posting about problematic things I figure I’ll have to read it for myself to find out if it’s better than his older books. I do genuinely hope he listened to the POC and mentally ill people and women who voiced valid criticisms of his work and decided to grow as a writer from it. We shall see. (I will say, if I don’t enjoy it or I spot problematic shit right away, I won’t be forcing myself to finish.)

Do you like or dislike memoirs?
I looooooooooove a memoir man! My favorites are celebrity memoirs, because a lot of times with them being so in the spotlight we get this idea that we already know them, but we don’t and it’s interesting to see what’s really going on with them and what they’ve been thinking during certain times of their lives. But really I’m down with any memoir, no matter who it’s about. It gives such a personal look to any event that I can’t resist.

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Cookie Read-A-Thon: Day 3

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Despite finishing two books I still feel like I barely spent any time reading today! Ugh! And of course I have to be getting sick… I knew I would, hubby has been sick for days so it was only a matter of time, but now I feel blechy and that makes reading harder because I’m distracted by my own physical misery.

I did totally meet and surpass my goals that I set for myself yesterday though. I not only finished the second Gallagher Girls book, but I started and finished the third one too, and I read for more time than the past two days.

Books Read Today:

Time Spent Reading Today:  5 H 06 M

Total Pages Read:  893

Total Time Spent Reading:  11 H 56 M

Books Completed During Read-A-Thon:  4

My goals for tomorrow are to read the entire fourth Gallagher Girls book and at least start on the fifth one. I’d set more challenging goals, but with as sick as I feel already tomorrow is going to be a pretty crappy day. Although if I wind up in the ER again, at least I’ll get some good reading time in!

The Cookie Read-A-Thon Kind of Daily Challenge, Day 3: Book(s) You Read in One Sitting

I’m doing The Cookie Read-A-Thon, started by Mary @ Books & Cookies (on her tumblr blog though). Learn More

I decided to interpret this prompt as “the type of book I usually read in one sitting” so here goes:

I’ve noticed that for the most part, I don’t usually read my favorite genre (YA Fantasy) in one sitting, but I’m not sure why. The genre I’m most likely to sit down and read all in one go is YA Contemporary, like the book I read last Thursday, Empress of the World (by Sara Ryan). That’s not to say there aren’t exceptions, but those usually have more to do with extenuating factors like lack of internet connection, unusually good writing (*cough* Cynthia Voigt *cough*), or the book being due back at the library the very next day.

The best I can figure, it must be the setting that does it. Because with a fantasy novel you have all this world building that goes into it, and with a contemporary novel it’s just your world so you can just jump right into it and go without having to remember where places are or how they do things or whatever.

Since I sort of mentioned her, I’ll point out that I can almost always read a Cynthia Voigt book in one sitting, regardless of genre. Unless something comes up that makes me have to stop reading, I won’t put a Cynthia Voigt book down until it’s over. (And possibly not even then.) I’ve read most of them several times over, but every single time I love them just as much as if it were the first time! I’ve never loved an author more honestly, as anyone who spends more than 30 seconds on this blog can probably tell.

Even if you’re not doing the read-a-thon, I’d love to know what sort of books you usually devour in one sitting, or even specific books you have (because I live for book recs, y’all). Comment (or reblog/message me if you are reading this on tumblr instead of wordpress) and let me know!

Cookie Read-A-Thon: Day 2

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Welp, once again I slept late (not complaining, I loooove sleeping) and then had….motivational difficulties, but I did eventually sit down to read.

I met my goals that I set for myself yesterday (finish the first Gallagher Girls book and make a start on some other book) so I’m satisfied, even though I feel like I should have spent more time reading today.

Books Read Today:

Time Spent Reading Today:  3 H 24 M

Total Pages Read:  452

Total Time Spent Reading:  6 H 50 M

Books Completed During Read-A-Thon:  2

Tomorrow my goals are to finish the second Gallagher Girls book which I started today, make a start on another book to be chosen when the time comes, and read more than 3 hours 20-something minutes because if I read almost the exact same dinky amount of time three days in a row it’s going to bug me.

Cookie Read-A-Thon: Day 1

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I didn’t start until the afternoon, but I’m pretty proud of my marginal progress already. Why, you ask? I finished Persuasion! I even enjoyed it! And I am now officially 5 books away from my goal for the year that I set on Goodreads.

Books Read Today:

Time Spent Reading:  3 H 26 M

Total Pages Read:  163

Total Time Spent Reading:  3 H 26 M

Books Completed:  1

Normally I would keep going, especially during a read-a-thon, but I’m weirdly sleepy and I’m going to try and take advantage of that since I don’t usually get much sleep at all.

My goal for tomorrow is to finish the first Gallagher Girl book that I started today and make some sort of start on a new book to be chosen when the time comes from the books I have checked out from the library (pictures can be seen in my Kind of Daily Challenge post for today if anyone would like to offer opinions on what I should read next).

I hope everyone else is having a great read-a-thon! 🙂

Persuasion Project Master Post

In August of this year I started a project with the goal of finally reading Jane Austen’s Persuasion. I have owned this book for over a decade and in that time have tried to read it with no success. The exact number of times I couldn’t say, but I know it was at least 7 or 8, and each time I would get only a few chapters in before I would get bored and give up.

I still don’t know exactly what it was that made it so hard for me to get into Persuasion, especially since I love all of Austen’s other work, and probably I never will know.

However, I set a New Year’s goal for finally reading Persuasion in 2017 and about halfway through the year decided it was time to make that happen. Thus, the Persuasion Project was started. I knew I couldn’t sit down and read it in one sitting, so I decided to only make myself read a single chapter a week, which I would then post something about. I figured even if I hated every single chapter, at least when it was done I’d have accomplished a long-time goal.

I actually finished much sooner than expected, taking only 11 weeks instead of 22! Hurray! I have now read all of Jane Austen’s novels.

The Cookie Read-A-Thon Kind of Daily Challenge, Day 1: TBR & Book You’re Most Excited About

I’m doing The Cookie Read-A-Thon, started by Mary @ Books & Cookies (on her tumblr blog though). Learn More

My actual TBR is pretty long, you can see it here, but the books in the pictures below are the ones I will be picking from during this Read-A-Thon. If you’ve read any of them I’d love to know what you thought, it would help me decide which books to read.

As for the book I’m most excited about… Well I managed to get an ILL hold on Forest of A Thousand Lanterns by Julie C Dao which means I may actually get to read it pretty soon! Hurray!

Musing Monday: October 9, 2017

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Musing Mondays is a weekly meme, hosted by Ambrosia at The Purple Booker, that asks you to choose one of the following prompts to answer:

I’m currently reading…
Up next I think I’ll read…
I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
I can’t wait to get a copy of…
I wish I could read ____, but…
I blogged about ____ this past week…

THIS WEEK’S RANDOM QUESTION: Have you ever read a book that changed your life?


I blogged about ____ this past week…

Have you ever read a book that changed your life?
To be honest I’m pretty sure every book I’ve read has changed my life in that the books we read shape the way we think and view the world in minute ways, but as for books that changed things significantly…

The Harry Potter series did, around middle school. I had always loved reading, even as a toddler, but around 6th grade my depression began to get overwhelmingly bad and I was struggling just to get through the days, with no energy left over for things like pleasure reading. Then in 7th grade I saw a chance to do something I wasn’t allowed to do and get away with it, which I always loved. (That thing being reading Harry Potter.) Thanks to those books I rediscovered my love of reading. In addition I discovered that reading could take me away from the struggle in my own life and mind, could give me an escape. I’ll always be grateful for that.

Cynthia Voigt’s books changed me too. Her writing changed the way I think. They taught me to look at problems differently, to face challenges differently. I think they helped me learn to be resilient. I learned from characters of hers how I could think to help me enjoy hard work, ways to appreciate small things and see beauty around me. Not that I couldn’t sometimes do those things already, but not as well. Her characters taught me how to arrange my thoughts to appreciate the things already around me. When I want to feel like my best self, I always reread a Cynthia Voigt book. It bothers me that more people don’t know about her books because they had such an impact on me.

Robert Fulghum is another that changed me I think. His books taught me an introspective way of thinking, taught me to look for meaning in my experiences. They also taught me to look at everything with a dose of humor, to laugh at myself, and to enjoy experiences in a more childlike way even as I became more mature. And on a lighter note, they were the first books I ever read that weren’t marketed specifically to children or teens, and I discovered I could like adult books.

I’m sure there have been others, but those are the ones that stand out in my mind. What books have changed you?

What Are You Reading Wednesdays: October 4, 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. Sons from Afar (The Tillerman Cycle, book 6) by Cynthia Voigt
  2. Maybeth always did that, brought her good news to the table and held it out, like a little kid holding out her hand, then unwrapping her fingers to show some treasure, some stone or flower. She held her good news out to them all, giving it to them.
  3. Oh man I’d trade most of the things in my life to be a Tillerman…