not a review

My Top Ten Tips from BookCon 2019

For the last six months I have been hoping and planning to attend BookCon in New York City. Life has been chaotic this year so until I sat down on the plane I wasn’t certain I was going to make it – but I did! What an experience. I have never been to a Book Conference of any kind and I found myself transported to this crazy world inhabited by book enthusiasts for two whole days. I had a wonderful time and it has made me excited to either go again or attend a different book conference. I had the opportunity to meet Jen Calonita, Danielle Paige, the editor of the Fablehaven series, and more and each and every one of them was kind and lovely.

Before attending, I researched BookCon and I thought I knew what to expect, but nothing could have prepared me for the thousands of people and hundreds of exhibits. The number one piece of advice you get before going to BookCon is this: plan. Well, I had a plan! It started with me getting in line to get a book signed at 10:30. The doors opened at 10:00 and I was one of the first people through. At 10:06 the line to get a ticket to get in line for my author had closed. And the line to get the ticket was nowhere near where the map said the event would be located. The rest of the morning was the same. I was a natural at finding the end of a closed line. By 12:00 I gave up and just enjoyed walking from booth to booth, admiring the books and book related merchandise, and chatting with other beautiful bookish people.

It was clear I had no idea what I was doing. But, if I ever get to go again I wanted to be ready. So I chatted with everyone I could and I asked for advice. Loads of them just kept telling me to “plan” but when you don’t know where to go it is nearly impossible to plan. Outside of that tip, here are the most useful pieces of advice I learned the hard way or received from other people.


Tip #1

When you get your badge, open it, register it, and read the directions. If I had done this I would have know that a full month in advance I could have requested two tickets for two different author autographs. Instead, I carefully put them away in my suitcase and only opened them the night before I left. By then, everything was sold out. Two free author tickets, wasted.

Tip #2

Download any apps, follow everyone and everything you can on social media, and pour over the website. I had downloaded the app but neglected to use the website to the fullest and I certainly could have done so much more on social media. Saturday night I went back to my hotel and just 30 minutes of cruising around on Instagram and Twitter opened my eyes to what was possible for me on Sunday.

Tip #3

Find one thing everyday that matters to you and go there first. If you want to be part of an event at 3:00 in the afternoon at Penguin, go over to their information booth and ask about it. They will tell you exactly when and where to get in line or to wait for tickets. I found that most people’s complaint was that the lines and booths change every year so even repeat BookCon participants were confused.

Tip #4

Don’t have your heart set on being able to do anything. By that, I mean, don’t have your heart set on meeting an author or attending a panel. There are far more people in attendance than there are seats and tickets. I had to console someone outside the building on Saturday because she was devastated didn’t get to meet Eoin Colfer. Rides break down at Disney and events get full at BookCon. Don’t let one missed thing ruin your day.

Tip #5

bookcon3If you have time, go to a variety of events. Many people are I it for the free books or author autographs. But, if you have a break or you just don’t know what to do don’t forget the panels. My favorite was how audiobooks are narrated and it featured some wildly popular narrators. It was fascinating, it was the last thing that day, and I wouldn’t have gone (necessarily) except I missed the tickets for something else. Every missed opportunity could be something else amazing! The woman pictured here is Saskia Maarleveld who narrator Ash Princess! It was actually one of my favorite things about this conference.

Tip #6

If the line is short you are probably cutting the line. I can’t tell you how many times I thought I had found the end of the line but instead it was a line break to keep the isle open. I would have been embarrassed if it wasn’t so common. On Sunday there seemed to be more “Mind the Gap” signs and “Middle of the Line” signs to guide people. Saturday was chaos.

Tip #5

A conference this large is not dissimilar to couponing. If you try to jump right in and organize coupons at every store you shop in you will become quickly exhausted. Instead, focus on one store / publisher. On Sunday morning I went directly to Penguin’s information booth and they walked me through the rest of the day. Doing this, at even this popular a publisher, meant that I got five signed ARCs and tons of ridiculous swag.

Tip #7

Read the rules. I knew that I couldn’t bring a wheelie bag into the conference but I didn’t know that I could check it downstairs. That means I could have just walked downstairs every once in a while and deposited all my lovely new books. Instead I walked miles and miles carrying everything. I slept like a baby but I really staggered home.

Tip #8

Ask questions. There is absolutely nothing wrong with asking people, “What are you in line to do?” This will prevent you from waiting in line for thirty minutes to spin a wheel and win a wristband you didn’t really want. Or cutting.

Tip #9

Have a way to get all of your new books safely home. I thought I would be walking away with, perhaps, ten new books. I planned on buying a couple and hoped to grab some new ones. Instead, this happened.

bookcon4

You may not be able to see but some of these books are even in piles because the publisher gave me duplicates and triplicates. I turned some books away! Of all of these books, I only bought five.

Tip #10

If you can, take a friend. Many wonderful events, signings, and give aways happen at the same time or the tickets for the events are given out at the same time. Having a friend doubles your chances of getting into more lines. If you have to go alone, there were whole groups that formed at the event to work together or just walk around together. Even if you go alone and talk to no one, you won’t be lonely because every three feet is a new wonderful book to read.


There you have it! My top ten tips from BookCon.

Tell me, please!

Have you ever been to a Book Conference? Do you have any tips or tricks?


 

not a review

In Defense of Buying Books

One of my Challenges for 2019 is to read and enjoy the books that I already own. To support that goal I vowed to celebrate every five books I read of my own by purchasing a new book. Theoretically, I would get ahead.

One of my other challenges was to use the library more. This one has been easy since I love my library. They have a great option where you can request books online and they put them aside for you. And, because I live in one of the best library systems in the United States, the selection is unbelievable.

In January I read sixteen books. But, only four of them were from my own shelf. I read wonderful books and listened to even better stories as audiobooks from my library. Still, the experience was not as satisfying as usual. The rest of the year has followed in a similar pattern.

Today is independent book store day. Walking around these wonderful stores is one of my favorite things to do. But today it made me sad. I know I have a lot of books. It is something people comment on (usually derogatorily) when they come into my home. I felt like I shouldn’t buy any more. It felt like being surrounding by people that I knew couldn’t talk to me. It was the unique feeling of being utterly alone while simultaneously surrounding by people.

I’m done with not buying books.

Owning books means that I have them in my home. I can flip to the middle and just read one little section again. If I want to relive how Neville got those last 10 points for Griffendor, I can. I can pile them up in front of me on a Saturday night and feel the excitement of the night in front of me. I can call on them at any time and they never ever tell me they are too busy. If I put them aside, they wait for me. Always. I can pick up a book and travel to the moment it first became precious to me. Unread, but owned books, are the promise of adventure.

Some people see books as unnecessary. Countless studies tell us how important it is for children to own books and have them in their home. Dolly Parton has given away more than one million books in an effort to give kids the same feeling I have when I see my books lined up on the shelf. Finding an adult that opposes putting books in the hands of kids is difficult. But once you are grown suddenly owning books is clutter.

It is undeniably a privilege to be able to buy books when I don’t need to do so. But why is book buying so different than owning a basement of wine or a closetful of shoes? Is it because I keep them out in the open? A privilege is a privilege. Just because it’s not your interest doesn’t mean that it is hoarding.

Books are my friends. They are my memory keepers. I can remember where I bought a book, when I bought a book, and sometimes, more importantly, why I purchased a new book. I have books from my childhood that I can remember my Mom or Dad buying for me.  I buy books as souvenirs on vacation and they are tangible evidence of my history. I get books for presents. They bring me joy.

And I know I need to read the books I buy and not just lovingly store them on a shelf. That is akin to buying art and not framing it or displaying it. Still, the more I promise NOT to buy books, the more I want them. Perhaps this, like a diet, needs to just have a more healthy approach than this all-or-nothing that I have tried in the past.

In the end, the world feels like a mess right now. Some people are prepping for a disaster by stockpiling food. I’m going to go ahead and do the same with books that I love. If something bad happens, come on over. I’ll be here reading and I’m happy to share.


Tell me, please!

How do you feel about buying books? Is it important to you to own your favorites?


 

not a review

My Non-OWL April 2019 Reading List

I am not an organized reader. Yesterday I posted my first quarter challenge updates and some things are going really well and others are suffering from the persistent mod reading. Something has to change! In addition to joining the OWL Readathon that was put together by G @ Book Roast, I am going to try making a general April 2019 Reading List. Here is what I hope to read to keep my challenges going during the month of April.

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

One NonFiction book about Sherlock Holmes (Waiting to see what the library provides!)

One Sherlock Holmes Fiction Book (A Study in Charlotte)

Finish the Magnus Chase series or The Fate of the Tearling series

And read my backlist!!! It is not getting any better by ignoring it! This is where I hope the OWL Readathon will help clear some decks.

I also need to read my three ARCs; Highland Crown by May McGoldrick, Dreaming in Code: Ada Byron Lovelance, Computer Pioneer by Emily Arnold McCully, and Solving for M by Jennifer Swender.


I realize this is a pretty unimpressive reading list and that many people have 10-15 books specifically picked out. But, that would be a recipe for disaster for me. I need flexibility to see what books call to me. And yet, I also need to suck it up and read certain books already. If I manage to finish all of these and my books for my O.W.L. Readathon I am going to celebrate (probably with a new book).


Tell me, please!

Do you have any tips on how to plan your upcoming reading to achieve your goals?


 

not a review

2019’s First Quarter Update

I would love to be the kind of person that is organized enough to do a monthly update but between my WWW posts and my backlog of reviews I was thinking maybe four times a year would be more my pace. With the first three months of 2019 behind us it is time to look back at how I did during the first quarter of the year!


Challenge Updates


Harry Potter Canon: I have read exactly ONE. Which is really a shame because I loved every single page.


Serious Series Love: I finished Kevin Kwan’s Crazy Rich Asians trilogy and it was delightful. You can see my full review here.

I started a new series which has been on my shelf for quite some time and I love it! One Fine Myth by Robert Asprin. I need to continue reading these as they are delightful.


Beat the Backlist: It is embarrassing to think I have only managed to read six measly books off of my backlist. I need to really get serious about these beautiful books! I also bought way more books than I should have when I was sad. I’ve got to get a grip!


Audiobook Challenge: Meanwhile, I am feeling quite proud of my audiobook list! I have already enjoyed NINE audiobooks this year!


Learn Something New: It took me a bit to think of what I wanted to focus on but I finally selected Sherlock Holmes / Arthur Conan Doyle after reading Conan Doyle for the Defense. There are a LOT of books about Sherlock and Arthur and I hope to get a chance to read at least five before the end of 2019.


Library Love Challenge: My library love knows no bounds! By my estimation (and believe me, this is an estimate – this doesn’t include DVDs, magazine or books I checked out and didn’t finish) I have saved $334.96 since January 1st!


Goodreads Challenge: I am also ahead here even though I had an abysmal March and have read 35 books so far this year.


Tell me, please!

How is your 2019 Reading so far?

not a review

Books I Bought When I Was Sad

When I was a kid the scholastic book people would give you a flimsy little mailer and you could pick a book. What felt like 100 days later your book would arrive, right in the middle of class, and my teachers would hand them out like trophies. My Mom and Dad always made sure that I got to order a book so it was the happiest day ever. Usually, I couldn’t remember what I had picked out and so it was a present. Past me had picked out something for future me to enjoy. And enjoy them I did!

When I see a book that I love (not just like but really really want to own) I will add it to my online cart. I try to only do so if the book is unavailable at my library. Occasionally when I get really sad I will just blindly order the cart (this is a very good reason to only store gift cards on your account and not credit cards). A short time later a box arrives at my house full of books from me-in-the-past to cheer me-in-the-future immediately up.

Most of February and March I have been in a major funk. And, one day I ordered all of the books in my cart. When I opened the box it was just full of friends ready to cheer me up. Did it work immediately (like it usually has in the past)? Not really. So I boxed them carefully back up again until I got in the right headspace. Not that I have broken though the slump from hell I am ready to celebrate by getting out my new books. Here I give you…..the books I bought when I was sad!



I feel so lucky to be able to afford to buy books and to have the ones I want readily available to me. I have some slight remorse over not sticking to my book buying plan but not as much as the joy I feel at cracking into my new books.


Tell me, please!

Do you ever buy books to cheer yourself up?


not a review

Books Books Everywhere and Still I Didn’t Read.

I’m weathering a bit of a storm in my life. Nothing terrible, there just seems to be a constant stream of bad news in my neck of the woods. When the emotional winds started to pick up and toss me around I did what I always do – I bought books. I tried not to (I swear!) but I had already requested as many as I could from the library and Netgalley. Still, there were some I wanted to read that the library didn’t own. I ask you, what am I supposed to do? Just not ever read that book? I had to buy them. Ahem.

Suddenly, I found myself sitting surrounded by piles of books. But, I didn’t read anything. For a solid week, I didn’t even look at books. That is not good. That is not me. I don’t like me when I’m not reading. Mind you, this wasn’t a slump so much as an, “oops I forgot to eat for a week” aberration in my behavior. Not reading was making me sadder and I hadn’t noticed.

Last night I confessed my week of non-reading to my best friend in the whole world. And saying it aloud made me realize I needed to read. And really, this is a non-problem. This is like complaining about having too many things in your refrigerator. I have books just waiting to keep me company and transport me away. I just needed to pick one and get going.

So, I started reading I Owe You One by Sophie Kinsella last night. And I felt almost instantly better. When I woke up (far too early this morning) there was my book on my bedside table ready to keep me company over a cup of coffee.

Books are friends. So, I am sorry to my book friends and to my bookish friends for falling into a hole last week. I see the way out now!


Tell me, please!

Have you ever experienced this before? What did you do to pull yourself out?


 

not a review

My Favorite Books of 2018

I have read so many wonderful books this year that I have broken my favorites into Ten categories with a Winner and an Honorable Mention given. If you want more information I have added a link to any original review.

Drumroll please….


Audiobooks

WinnerSo That Happened by Jon Cryer. My nine hours spent listening to Ducky (I mean Jon!) talk about his youth and experiences felt far too short. He is dryly funny and deeply interesting and it stands out as my absolute favorite audiobook of the year.

 

 

 

 

stuffmattersHonorable MentionStuff Matters by Mark Miodownik. This audiobook had the delightful ability to keep me interested in a subject matter that probably would have put me to sleep otherwise. Read in a clipped British accent that drives the information directly into your brain and featuring a perfect blend of history and science Stuff Matters will make you the most annoying or fascinating party guest, depending completely on your audience. Read the room before you launch into the history of plastics!

 


Children’s Literature

BobWinner: Bob by Wendy Mass and Rebecca Stead is the early middle grade book everyone should read. A story of what it means to be a friend is always important but Bob brings subtle layers to the friendship between the sweet Bob and his Livy.

 

 

 

 

7thHonorable MentionThe Seventh Most Important Thing by Shelley Pearsall. This book was part of a book club required reading and, although I was determined to hate it, I cannot love it more. A redemption story through the recognition that things are not always what they seem to be was a wonderful theme for 2018.

 

 

 


Graphic Novels

princeWinner: The Prince and Dressmaker by Jen Wang is hands down my best graphic novel of 2018. The story didn’t match my prediction based on the cover at all. Instead it was so much more. If you want a story about being true to yourself and what it means to accept someone, look no further.

 

 

 

 
sabrinachilHonorable Mention: The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina by Roberto Aguierre-Sacasa. I read this series during my month of Frighteningly Good Reads 2018 and it is amazing. If you have already peeked at the Netflix series and liked what you saw then you will also love these books. I do not enjoy horror stories but this dark turn on Sabrina was just the right combination of horror and storytelling for me.

 

 

 


Fantasy

returnofthekingWinner: The Lord of the Rings, Return of the King by J.R.R. Tolkien. Perhaps this book lands on top of my fantasy experiences  for the year aided by the satisfaction of finishing the trilogy but I don’t think so. This was, hands down, the best of the trilogy for me and the last 100 pages were so action packed and then sweet that I will always remember reading this with joy.

 

 

 

IronGold

Honorable MentionIron Gold by Pierce Brown. Beginning this book was difficult. Not simply because it is a hefty 601 pages but because we left the characters at the end of Morning Star at relative peace. Ten years later we find them….still fighting. But, in true Pierce Brown manner the character building and action climb together until you close the book and find yourself wanting more.

 

 


Fiction

circeWinner: Circe by Madeline Miller. I tried to limit my expectations after reading and falling deeply in love with Song of Achilles but Madeline Miller absolutely exceeded even my (secret) wildest expectations. You have seen the book in every store and heard everyone talking about it for a reason – it is perfect.

 

 

 

 

storied lifeHonorable Mention: The Storied Life of A.J. Fikery by Gabrielle Zevin. I bought this book because it has a bookstore on the cover. I started reading it because it was alphabetized last on my TBR bookshelf. And I love it because it is a beautiful story that shines a light on the how books weave into the fabric of our lives and those we love.

 

 

 


Historical Fiction

watchmakerWinner: The Watchmaker of Filigree Street by Natasha Pulley. This was one of the first books I read in 2018 and it remains my absolute favorite. It is the overall winner of every award for me in every category but I placed it here because, technically, it is historical fiction. This beautiful sweeping story takes you back and forth between London and Japan and volleys between historical facts and fantastical fiction. This is the book that owned my heart in 2018.

 

 

 

thealicenetworkHonorable Mention: The Alice Network by Kate Quinn. I started this book and misplaced it. It is a testament to the writing and characters in this book that when I found it again I was able to immediately sit down and continue reading without missing a beat. This story features a number of strong women as they help the war effort and pick up the ravaged pieces of the world. As two story lines, one from WWI and one from post-WWII, begin to intertwine the rising action took on a break neck pace. This adventure is one I was thrilled to see unfold during 2018.

 


NonFiction

awkwardWinner: Awkward, The Science of Why We’re Socially Awkward and Why That’s Awesome by Ty Tashiro, PhD. This was not only an excellent book but also stands as my most often quoted book of 2018. Where was this book when I was an awkward nerd in sixth grade?!? As an awkward adult I enjoyed seeing the growth potential and the previously unknown benefits of my awkwardness. As someone who works with children I love recommending this book to naturally socially adept adults. You know, those who have never stood outside the circle just wondering how all the talking happened. Awkward people unite!

 

CanadaHonorable Mention: Canada by Mike Myers. I have a deep and abiding crush on Canada. I cannot say I love it yet. I found myself first attracted to Canada several years ago. I finally took my first trip through Quebec this year and so my crush is still blooming. But, true knowledge is what leads to love. Mike Myers has that in spades for his native land. Part autobiography part history of Canada and all fabulous this book was perfect for feeding my fascination with Canada.

 


Romance

MarriageWinnerMarriage of Inconvenience by Penny Reid. This is the seventh book in the Knitting in the City series and features (finally) Kat and Dan’s story. Penny Reid introduced both of these characters in book one and has allowed the readers glimpses of their infatuation and love in brief moments through the series. The hype about finally seeing them get together was high. And, the book delivered! The female characters Reid creates are interested and her books always have truly smart quirks. I was as happy to finally read Kat and Dan’s story as I was sad that the series was over.

 

 

thekissquotientHonorable MentionThe Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang. This book received an unbelievable amount of hype in 2018 and, deservedly so. It was the most surprising contemporary romance I have read since Sally Thorne’s The Hating Game. This gender swap on Pretty Woman is made more interesting by the author’s ability to simultaneously feature culturally varied characters and characters with disabilities without making the reader feel like they are being lectured.

 

 


Young Adult

warbringerWinner: Warbringer by Leigh Bardugo. This is part of the DC Icons series. I may not have always been a fan of the scantily clad Amazon but after Gal Gadot I became a dire hard fan. Leigh Bardugo’s retelling of Diana’s beginnings as Wonder Woman was a perfect mixture of cannon and invention and I loved it completely.

 

 

 

 

foolish_heartsHonorable Mention: Foolish Hearts by Emma Mills. I do know normally enjoy books set in high schools. However, I received Foolish Hearts from an OwlCrate and those books are always enjoyable. I was delighted to find that, while this was a romance of sorts, it was mostly about falling in love with yourself and growing as a person. This book also featured genuinely positive examples of both female and male friendship and I ate it up.

 

 

 


Scary / Spooky (Horror Light)

tendeadcomediansWinner: Ten Dead Comedians by Fred Van Lente. Ten comedians are locked on an unpopulated island and one after another they die…horribly. Fans of Agatha Christie’s locked room experiences will enjoy this modern twist. The added bonus of comedy’s more recently defined “unacceptable” lines left me constantly guessing as to the real identities of the fiction dead jokesters.

 

 

 

 

smallspacesHonorable Mention: Small Spaces by Katherine Arden. Holy moly this middle grade story was scary. It had everything – kids that don’t listen, parents that don’t believe, a ghost, an old curse and most of all a tag line you can whisper to fellow readers, “Stick to Small Spaces.”

 

 

 


Tell me, please!

What are your favorite reads from 2018?


not a review

Dewey’s Readathon October 2018

Dewey’s 24 hour Readathon was this past weekend. It happens twice a year. I was so excited to participate again this time (my second) because I learned about it far enough in advance to plan my reading and food and schedule. Ahh, the best laid plans and intentions…

From 8 a.m. until noon I was reading steadily. I started with The Bone Witch by Rin Chupeco and the pace of this book was gratifyingly adventurous. In about three and a half hours I had more than half of the book read but I found that I couldn’t sit still anymore. I had consumed my maximum level of coffee and done some serious snacking and so I knew that I needed a break. I really wanted to enjoy this book and perhaps start a new one today so I had to keep going!

I tried everything but I couldn’t sit still anymore. Eventually I managed to enjoy Andre the Giant, a decent graphic novel about the larger than man that Andre was, but I couldn’t return to The Bone Witch.

As this was my second Readathon I thought I had a better handle on what to expect and how to be successful. But, as readers we are always growing and changing. And now I know that sitting down to consume a book in entirety has never really been something that I could force. After four hours I started to feel like I had a test approaching and instead of enjoying my reading time it because very stressful.

Dewey’s Readathons also provide a plethora of social media platforms in which to participate and socialize. While I loved reading through other people’s process I found trying to keep up with Facebook, Goodreads, Twitter and Instagram overwhelming.

The next Readathon is April 6, 2019. Now I know I need a variety of books to read and audiobooks to keep my momentum going. I should probably also cut back on the snacks…they caused a massive nap. Finally I plan to pick one or two social platforms instead of trying to follow along with every single one.

Read and learn I guess!


Tell me, please!

Have you participated in a readathon? What are your tips?

not a review

July 2018’s Reverse Readathon

The wonderful people at Dewey’s 24 Hour Reathon hosted a Reverse Readathon this weekend. I only heard about it on Wednesday but I wanted to participate because, well, reading. I didn’t do anything correctly. I missed the prompts that were posted on the site, I didn’t know you were supposed to time yourself and I am now finding out that I didn’t even sign up properly! So, I suppose I participated in it renegade style. Still, it was a wonderful experience. Since I didn’t know about it far enough ahead I didn’t have time to clear my schedule. But, for 24 hours I made reading a priority and it has slapped some enthusiasm into me!

The Reverse Readathon, I would come to learn, was “reverse” because of the hours. This Readathon was from 8 p.m. Friday night until 8 p.m. Saturday night instead of the usual schedule (which I still don’t know for sure). So, Friday night I sat out my stack.

fullsizeoutput_fcd

Like I said, I didn’t know about the Readathon so I had a full day Friday but I still managed to finish Circe on my lunch break. Gorgeous, beautiful Circe. Sigh. I just couldn’t wait. I also ran to the store and stock piled like a teenage version of my brother and four of his friends were coming over that night. At 8:00 Friday night I promptly sat down and started reading.

killthefarmboy

I started with Kill the Farm Boy. Was that in my stack? No. No, it was not. But, I was half-way through it and hopped up on so much tea. I only read for two hours that night but I ate a full bag of chips and too many M&Ms. I have never been a night owl so off to bed I went.

At 6:30 the next morning I was reading again! After coffee and more coffee I finished Kill the Farm Boy and went directly to Regarding the Fountain: a Tale, in Letters, of Liars and Leaks by Kate and Sarah Klise. I needed a refreshing change if I was going to continue with this marathon of reading.

regardingthefountainI love the Klise sisters and I read this while I exercised. This book, like all of theirs, is thoroughly enjoyable. I love the format the Klise sister’s employ of using letters, drawn newspaper clippings and so very many puns and hilarious names. When the children finally figure out where the water in Dry Creek had gone I was finished with my biking (God bless recumbent bicycles) and ready to move on to my next book.

I decided to jump into Ready Player One and I had a couple of chapters finished when it was time for me to head to an afternoon appointment. Thankfully, I was able to listen to my audiobook version of Stuff Matters while driving to and from everything. I didn’t finish either book by the end of the 24 hour Readathon but I only have three chapters left in Stuff Matters, I am half-way through Ready Player One, and I got twenty more pages into Two Towers. More importantly, I had an absolutely fantastic time.

Lately, life has been busy and typically reading is saved for when everything else gets done. I read everyday (I couldn’t fall asleep without reading first) but it hasn’t been a priority since returning from Canada. Nor has my writing reviews (clearly). But the Readathon reminded me that when something is important you make it a priority. So, instead of watching television all Friday night and sleeping late Saturday I made time to read. And now, I am determined to keep that energy going as long as possible!

Another Readathon is scheduled for October and I am sure there are other people hosting similar events. If I have any hope of getting through my 2018 reading goals, I will need them.


Tell me, please!

Have you participated in a Readathon?


not a review

My Canadian Obsession

Many years ago I started developing a major crush on Canada. I grew up in the mid-west and Canada seemed just a exotic and far away as Mexico. Also, as a cold-weather lover, Canada seemed more suited for me. Basically, Canada is my tall dark and handsome Jacob and everything south is the Edward everyone else is into. In the past two years it has blossomed into a bit of an obsession.

Finally I had the opportunity to visit! For the last ten days I have been traveling through Canada – mostly Quebec. While I may have arrived home to my own bed last night completely exhausted and swearing to never travel again, this morning my crush continues. While I travelled I had a ton of time to read and listen to books and I burned through so many! And, I was “lucky” in that almost all of the book stores in Quebec were French only books so I only came home with two new books. I cleared five off my massive TBR and started a sixth so I am ahead (which is highly unusual for me). Wait, do the two French/English dictionaries I bought count? Er, I also purchased some on my Kindle – do they count if I already read them? Darn it. Hold on while I just climb right off my high horse.

Many reviews are coming and I cannot wait to catch up on what everyone else is reading!


Tell me, please!

Do you have any Canadian related reading recommendations?