November 2015 Monthly Wrap-up

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The Month in Review is hosted by Kathryn at the Book Date.


It is just like me to pick November as the month to start my blog! This has been, by far, the worst month in terms of reading.  As a wife and mother of two, I don’t get to read as much as I want but I normally find the time to read my fair share. This month I failed miserably!

As I started to think about this post and how I would make my month look and sound so much better…. I had to stop and accept what my month really was. It was hard. I look at the bloggers I admire and I long for the days when I could spend the majority of my time reading. My life was that way once upon a time but I have to remember that as time moves forward, things change. So I am pledging to just enjoy my blogger friends instead of judging myself to them. It’s really the only way, don’t you agree?

Without further ado, here is my November month in review…

Books Read

Burn by James Patterson & Michael Ledwidge
Illuminae by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff

Books Reviewed

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff

Challenges Starting in 2016

Full House Challenge 2016 hosted by the Book Date

The 2016 Color Coded Challenge hosted by My Reader’s Block

Dares

The TBR Triple Dog Dare hosted by James Reads Books

I think that covers everything for November. I will post about my plans for December tomorrow! I look forward to enjoying this journey with you!

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Review Illuminae by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff

IlluminaeIlluminae by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
Published: October 20, 2015
Genres: Science Fiction, YA
Pages: 599
Source: Purchased
Format: Hardcover
Rating: 


This morning, Kady thought breaking up with Ezra was the hardest thing she’d have to do.

This afternoon, her planet was invaded.

The year is 2575, and two rival megacorporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to fight their way onto an evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit.

But their problems are just getting started. A deadly plague has broken out and is mutating, with terrifying results; the fleet’s AI, which should be protecting them, may actually be their enemy; and nobody in charge will say what’s really going on. As Kady hacks into a tangled web of data to find the truth, it’s clear only one person can help her bring it all to light: the ex-boyfriend she swore she’d never speak to again.

Told through a fascinating dossier of hacked documents—including emails, schematics, military files, IMs, medical reports, interviews, and more—Illuminae is the first book in a heart-stopping, high-octane trilogy about lives interrupted, the price of truth, and the courage of everyday heroes.


I am not going to go into the fact that the way the book is laid out as a dossier with transcripts, interviews and the view into an AIs mind because everyone has talked about that. I am going to tell you how the book made me feel.

Two things came to mind within the first 3 pages of this book – Mass Effect and The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Trust me, that’s a compliment. I immediately felt like I was in the story reading the dossier after the events unfolded. I was immediately invested in Kady and Ezra as people as well as a couple. I loved they way they wrote to each other.  You really got to know all the different sides of their personality.  I loved their sarcasm and the wit. The way they reacted to events differently really gave me insight into their personalities and is how I could be completely drawn into their world.

I felt many different feelings while reading this story – happiness, sadness, anger, fear, confusion…I think it is a testament to the amazing writing by the Author’s if you can feel all of those feelings just through a dossier of paperwork.

If you have not read this book – What the ███ are you waiting for? GO, RUN!

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Full House Reading Challenge 2016

Full House Challenge Final 2016

I am really looking forward to completing this challenge hosted by Book Date!  Come join me!

Challenge Guidelines:

  • Challenge will run from Jan 1st to December 31st 2016
  • Write and publish a post stating your intention to participate. In the post please include the Challenge graphic and a link back to this post. Then link your intention post at the bottom of this post.  Make sure it is the actual post and not just a generic link to your blog.
  • Add your reviews back here on the link in this post. At the end of every three months there will be a U.S. $12 prize with a book of your choice from the Book Depository or U.S. Amazon voucher, for the entries. There will be a new linky then for the next quarter and so on to the end of December.
  • Reviews are not mandatory and if you prefer to keep a list of the books read and the category they cross off the card, then you can still enter for the completion of a Full House by linking to that list on the final linky or in a comment.
  • Jan – March Link Up
  • April – June Link Up
  • July – September Link Up
  • October – December Link Up
  • Each review can only be linked up once in the year. However it doesn’t matter when you read the book in 2016 – which month, just link as you remember or have time. So if you read it in January you may not get around to linking it until say… May. That is fine.
  • Books may cross over from other challenges that you are doing.
  • There will be a final post to link in a summary post for the challenge for those who have completed a full house. This will close on the 2nd January 2017  and a winner will be chosen using random.org for a U.S. $30 prize which again can be used to buy books at the Book Depository or be received as an Amazon voucher.

                            Link Full House post here

  • Complete the card below.  You can do it in any order you wish.  You are allowed “one free exchange”, if there is something on the square you really dislike you may change it to something of your choice. Once you have played this free choice that is it. Mention the exchange in the final summary post.
Full House Reading Challenge Grid 2016
* Self Challenge means setting a challenge for yourself for this square. For example I might set read a book my a male author, because I hardly ever do that. Or …
* Setting beginning with B. This can be a country, a state, a place, a street. Or it could be a beach or the bush or a bookshop. Long as a good part of the book is set there, the whole book might be, but it doesn’t have to be.
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Inside Out Book Tag

InsideOut

I was kind of, not really, in a generic way, tagged by Adventures of a Bibliophile for the Inside Out Book Tag.

I actually just saw this movie last weekend with my family and I loved it. Sadness was my favorite because she reminded me of, well, me! No one will ever accuse me of being the most positive person in the room! Anyway, here are my answers to the questions.

Joy: A book that brings you joy!

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon brings me a lot of joy! I love the entire series.  The characters are so well written and I really feel like I’m a part of them, their family. I can read these books over and over – even though I rarely do that will any book.

Fear: A book that scares you!

There was a book, long ago, that scared me so badly that, to this day, I still get all weirded out just thinking about it. That book is Darkfall by Dean Koontz. If you like horror books, I highly recommend you try this one out!  You will not regret it I promise!

Disgust: A book that disgusts you!

Disgust is a strong word. But if I have to put a book in this category it would have to be Unwind by Neal Shusterman.  This is the first book in the Unwind Dystology.  It was disturbing.  I was not a huge fan of the book although I did find the premise interesting.  I may or may not read the rest of the series.

Sadness: A book that makes you sad!

I cried several times throughout the reading of The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah. This was probably my favorite book of 2015.  I really became invested in the characters of this book.  The relationship between the two sisters is heartbreaking at times.  This book truly made me think about what life was like in Europe during this time period.  Read it.

Anger: A book that makes you angry!

I can’t remember the last time I read a book and was so angry as it ended.  Allegiant by Veronica Roth pissed me off completely!  I am sure there are very few of us who have not read this book but I don’t want to spoil it for those that may stumble upon this post and have not read it.

Please go over to Adventures of a Bibliophile and check out her answers – they really great!

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The Friday 56

Friday 56

The Friday 56 is a weekly meme hosted by Freda’s Voice.

Here are the rules:

– Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader
– Find any sentence, (or few, just don’t spoil it)
– Post it.
– Add the url of your post to the Linky on Freda’s most recent post.

“A shallow pit had been dug a few hundred yards into the woods behind the compound. The pit was for burning bodies.”

Page 56 of:

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I hope you pick this book up if you have not read it.  It looks so good!!

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Memes

I really like the idea of doing bookish memes.  I think, as a new blogger, it will help me to get used to posting almost daily.  Also, I think they give me the opportunity to get to know other bloggers.

My problem is this…I cannot find a lot of active memes!  Maybe I am not looking in the right place. Maybe Wednesdays and Thursday are not big meme days.  I have found some – but none that have jumped out at me and screamed do me! do me!  Or worse, I find one I really think would be cool and it is no longer active.

So I am asking you, bloggers of the world, what memes do you do that you really love?

The 2016 Color Coded Reading Challenge

Color Challenge 2016

I love challenges. I don’t know if it is because I never participated in sports as a child and never felt the thrill of a win but now, as an adult, I love doing things that I can “win” at. That’s kinda sad now that I read it! LOL Well, whatever the reason, I am really excited to participate in this one and get started on January 1, 2016!

This challenge is hosted by Bev at My Reader’s Block.

The Color Coded Challenge seems to be as popular as ever, so we’re going to give it another go. Once again the categories will be more open–the color may either be named in the title or it may appear as the dominant color for the cover of the book. For “implies color” the image implying color should dominate the cover–for instance a large rainbow, a field of flowers, or the image of a painter.

Here are the rules:
*Read nine books in the following categories.

1. A book with “Blue” or any shade of Blue (Turquoise, Aquamarine, Navy, etc) in the title/on the cover.
2. A book with “Red” or any shade of Red (Scarlet, Crimson, Burgandy, etc) in the title/on the cover.
3. A book with “Yellow” or any shade of Yellow (Gold, Lemon, Maize, etc.)in the title/on the cover.
4. A book with “Green” or any shade of Green (Emerald, Lime, Jade, etc) in the title/on the cover.
5. A book with “Brown” or any shade of Brown (Tan, Chocolate, Beige, etc) in the title/on the cover.
6. A book with “Black” or any shade of Black (Jet, Ebony, Charcoal, etc) in the title/on the cover.
7. A book with “White” or any shade of White (Ivory, Eggshell, Cream, etc)in the title/on the cover.
8. A book with any other color in the title/on the cover (Purple, Orange, Silver, Pink, Magneta, etc.).
9. A book with a word that implies color (Rainbow, Polka-dot, Plaid, Paisley, Stripe, etc.).

* Any book read from January 1 through December 31, 2016 will count.

*Crossovers with other challenges are fine.

Come join us for this great challenge!  You can find the sign up over at My Reader’s Block.

I hope to see you there!

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Top Ten Quotes I Loved from Books I Read in the Past Year or so

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

I have been reading these lists for a while now so one of the first things I wanted to do when I started my blog was to join in.  I hope you love them as much as I do!

  1. “I belong to the people I love, and they belong to me–they, and the love and loyalty I give them, form my identity far more than any word or group ever could.” ~ Allegiant by Veronica Roth
  2. “Reverend was right about one thing: people always want a reason for the bad things in life. Sometimes there ain’t one.” ~ Revival by Stephen King
  3. “I had forgotten how gently time passes in Paris. As lively as the city is, there’s a stillness to it, a peace that lures you in. In Paris, with a glass of wine in your hand, you can just be.” ~ The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah
  4. “Getting to know someone in blind darkness changes your impression of them.” ~ Unwind by Neal Shusterman
  5. “Grief is not as heavy as guilt, but it takes more away from you.” ~ Insurgent by Veronica Roth
  6. “We always hurt the ones we love, darling.” ~ Fifty Shades Freed by E.L. James
  7. “The more I want to be oblivious, the less I can be. Life and light will not let me be.” ~ The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
  8. “We tell ourselves often enough that something happened, we start to believe it, and then we can actually remember it.” ~ Before I Go to Sleep by S.J. Watson
  9. “Tante Isabelle says it’s better to be bold than meek. She says if you jump off a cliff at least you’ll fly before you fall.” ~ The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah
  10. “People talk about the pain of grief, but I don’t know what they mean. To me, grief is a devastating numbness, every sensation dulled.” ~ Allegiant by Veronica Roth

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Welcome and Why I Love My Mailman!

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Hi there! As you can see I have started a blog (thanks Captain Obvious!). You can check out the ‘About Me’ page and it will give you the why. Also see the ‘Review Policy’ and ‘Rating System’ pages and you will be caught up on all the happenings thus far!

So let’s move ahead into why I love my mailman…

This past week has been amazing for my book addiction. The first score was the receipt of my first ARC! Penguin Books was kind enough to send me Keep Me Posted by Lisa Beazley for review. I had requested a copy only a week prior and it just appeared! As soon as I finish Illuminae, this is at the top of the TBR.20151112_100643-1That same day, to my surprise, I received a package for the Babbling Book Swap I had joined which was hosted by @babblingbooks on Instagram. Please check out her Instagram page! Her photos are beautiful and creative. She also has great book reviews on her blog. These are the awesome books that a fellow bookstagram-er sent me:

20151112_140354Two days after that, I received my Book of the Month subscription package. This book wasn’t a surprise as, with this subscription, you get to choose the book you want to receive. The book I chose for this month was The Witches: Salem, 1692 by Stacy Schiff.20151114_123619-1 I was still excited because I had been interested in getting this book for a while now. I still have her book Cleopatra in my TBR…It’s a really big TBR pile I have.

Finally, last night I received my Uppercase Subscription Box. This was my first month and I am hooked!  This month’s book is Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin. It sounds really interesting. Plus, as you can see in the picture, there are sticky notes through out the book for a interactive experience. I think I will really enjoy reading this one. But look at the cute bookish items too! This box came with a Wolf by Wolf pin, a key chain that reads “Certified Book Addict” (so appropriate), and a lovely picture I can’t wait to frame. All were included in a great little bag that I will find a way to repurpose every month!20151116_172926-1

And this is why I love my mailman…♡

PS: Keep an eye out for reviews of all of these books in the near future!

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