Top Ten Tuesday – I Really Need to Read More by These Ladies

September 16, 2014 Meme 6

Today’s top ten Tuesday topic is Top Authors I’ve Only Read One Book From But NEED to Read More. I decided to just do these ladies, because, well, coincidence. Anywho.

1. A. S. Byatt, Possession. (not a review, but close) Egads y’all. Byatt is up there with Atwood for me, who, I was surprised to realize, I HAVE read more than one book by. Atwood I mean, not Byatt. I’ve only read the one, even though I’m pretty sure I own all of her books. Or at least most of them. I LOOOOOOOOVE Possession. I’ve read it multiple times. (Skip the poetry.) So, I’m not sure why I haven’t read another book by her. Intimidation?

2. Marie Brennan, A Natural History of Dragons. (haven’t reviewed. bah.) I had a feeling Marie Brennan would be a fun read. Geez, I have like 4 of her books, have that a couple of them for YEARS. But then this one came out, and I hemmed and hawed, until I finally listened to it. And lo and behold, I WAS RIGHT. She is a fun read. So why haven’t I read the FOUR I ALREADY OWN? Gah.

3. Diana Wynne Jones, Howl’s Moving Castle. (my review) Oh, Miss Jones. What kept us apart for so long? And WHY have I only read Howl’s Moving Castle? We must remedy this situation.

4. Angela Carter, Wise Children. (review from a LONG time ago) This. THIS. THIS is seriously embarrassing. Angela Carter is practically my most favorite author I’ve hardly read. And I own so many of her books? WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME. I’ve read Wise Children twice, and, granted, it is brilliant, it can’t be the only Carter I ever read.

5. Jhumpa Lahiri, The Interpreter of Maladies. (my review, another TRULY old one.) In my review, I said, “When I grow up, I want to write like this woman.” I still want to write like this woman. I would also like to find time to actually READ her. Now is a good time to do it too, with A More Diverse Universe going on!

6. Elizabeth Hand, Illyria. (my review) I just adored this book. Hand’s writing is something to behold. Or beheld. AGAIN.

7. Daphne du Maurier, Rebecca. (never reviewed? OMG!) Rebecca is one of those books I wish I could read again for the first time. I loved it SO MUCH. And I need to LOVE MORE by her!

8. Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice. (never reviewed? What is wrong with me??) Surely you know the fun and wit of Jane Austen. I’ve heard all her books are like this. However, I think I have a deep seeded fear than none will compare to P&P.

9. Natasha Solomons, Mr. Rosenbaum Dreams in English. (review) I can clearly remember how completely delighted I was with Mr. Rosenbaum. I was determined to read everything Solomons wrote after I read it. I even have the newer books. I feel like I’m repeating myself.

10. Jane Yolen, Briar Rose. (my review) I loved, LOVED I TELL YOU, Briar Rose. I loved it. Yolen’s writing suits the fairytale motif like magic. And she has written SO MUCH. It kind of reminds me of how I feel about Diana Wynne Jones…where do I begin????

Which authors have you only read one book from? Are you regretting it?

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Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. More HERE.

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading This Week?

September 15, 2014 Books, Meme 10

So, in this first post with my new blogging sensibilities, I’m going old school. So no graphics. This is like my early years of blogging, like, almost 10 years ago! It feels SO GOOD. Seriously, making pretty pictures can stress me out.

So, y’all. As I contemplated all the things this weekend, I also did a bit of reading. You see, I went to the library for the FIRST TIME since CHRISTMAS last year and got some books. Which means I got graphic novels. So, when I finally finished Will Storr vs. the Supernatural, which was great, perfect RIP read, highly recommended, and yes he comes to a conclusion, no I’m not telling you what it was, I went on a mini-graphic novel binge. I read, in quick succession: BLUFFTON by Matt Phelan (OMG I LOVE HIM), BATTLING BOY by Paul Pope, and ROBOT DREAMS by Sara Varon. Bluffton was exactly what I expect from Matt Phelan, which is a touching story with AMAZING art. Battling Boy was a great story, and not so great art. Sorry, just not a fan of the art. Robot Dreams was absolutely charming and now I want to read everything Sara Varon does. Just like Matt Phelan. Did I mention I love him?

I love him.

In other readings, I’m still working through the book on childhood anxiety. But in other news, I think I figured out part of the girl’s problem. Her best friend moved a couple hours away and she was missing her! She didn’t even realize it, until I set her up with texting on her Touch. Now they are talking all the time again and she has been so much more like her old self. You can imagine my relief.

Since I finished the Will Storr, I need another RIP book. I haven’t figured out what that book is yet.

In the meantime, I started a book of short stories by Neil Gaiman; Smoke & Mirrors. The first story, hidden in the introduction is a brilliant play on The Picture of Dorian Gray and marriage. I LOVED IT. I love him. Come to think of it, this might fit in the RIP parameters…. Hm….

Now that A More Diverse Universe has started (YAY!!!!), I plan to start a book by a person of color. Like, as soon as I get off the computer. I will report back on that later.

How was your weekend? What are you reading this week?

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Hosted weekly by super-awesome Sheila from BookJourney.

 

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How Do You Solve a Problem Like Blogger Burnout?

September 14, 2014 Books 15

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Firstly, I want to thank everyone who took the time to comment, email, and otherwise comfort a very high strung Heather last week. Your words meant the world to me and reinforced what I needed to know where true; I can’t leave this community. Not for a minute. And thank you to all of those who wrote posts on the virus that seems to be spreading throughout the book bloggerdom, especially Amanda at Fig and Thistle, Andi and Estella’s Revenge,  and Shannon from River City Reading.

So this leaves me with some work to do, which is, mainly, figure out how to make this work. I’m afraid if I take a hiatus to figure out my schedules, my schedules might wind up not finding the time to write. So, I have to lay a few ground rules. These is my plans:

1) Find the time in unusual places. Write in unusual ways.

1a) Get your butt up earlier in the morning. I may feel boa-constricted by routine (yuck), but I have to give it a try.

1b) Post whenever a post is ready. Quit worrying about making that special midnight post time. If the post is for Tuesday and it’s not ready until 3:00, go ahead and post it. Or like right now, at 8:10 on Sunday night.

1c) Go back to pen and paper. I used to write up a lot of my posts before I typed them up. This worked well. I don’t know why it fell to the wayside. There is now a notebook and a few pens in my reading spot. Note takings have already begun.

TWO) Stop stressing if a review book gets read and/or written up or not. I just can’t deal. It literally crashes my reading.

3) Stop trying to follow a formula. I just can’t write that way and shouldn’t have to. I’m gonna write from the heart, damn the consequences. Write for myself and hope everyone else, how ever many there may be, enjoys it.

D) FREE RANGE READING. It rules, yo. If it ain’t catching on, I WILL throw it at the wall. Figuratively, of course. Well, unless it deserves it. I’m looking at you Beatrice and Virgil.

and 5) Embrace the blogging and freaking have fun.

OH, and SIX. STOP CHECKING THE STATS.

So, sorry y’all. Yer stuck wif me. And thank you again, from the bottom of my anxiety-ridden heart for the love and support. And thanks for sticking with me on this journey.

Photo credit: Flickr

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The Brain Needs to Purge

September 10, 2014 Books 18

I have so many thoughts going around in my head, whenever I sit down at my computer. I hardly know where to begin. I know earlier in the week, I sounded hopeful that I would adjust to my new schedule, that I would find the time to blog, and things would go on like they were.

And then I find myself wondering what’s the point. I can’t find the time to blog. I can’t find the time to read. And I find myself without the interest in much of anything to do with the computer, blogging, or read. I can’t seem to find The Sparrow interesting, NOT for lack of trying. Tiny Beautiful Things only holds my attention for about 1 story. I’m enjoying Will Storr vs. the Supernatural, yet here I am, as I have been for a couple of hours, goofing off on the internets instead of reading.

What gives?

I can’t decide if it’s the beginnings of a slump, dissatisfaction with what I’m reading, or just a general life malaise.

And now, after Andi’s post yesterday, I almost didn’t even write this up. Because I can’t even find it in me to blog. I have two half-reviews written and I didn’t care to finish them up. Because who cares. No one reads them. My hits have plunged in the last few years. I do good to break 100 hits a day now. I’m boring. Blogging is boring. I don’t want reading to become boring too.

I’m not sure where this train of thought is leading. That’s a lie. Yes, I do. It sounds like I want to quit, doesn’t it?

I don’t really want to quit. But I’m not sure I want to keep going the way I’m going. And no, I’m not looking for comments. I just needed to get this out. See, even at this point, I wonder what is the point in posting even this? Does anyone even care? I may NOT even post this, but just for the moment, let my brain purge, because it needs to. It needs to find the reason, the desire, the POINT, of continuing on. I know I would miss it. I know I would still read other blogs.

Maybe I just need a break.

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading This Week?

September 8, 2014 Books, Meme 13

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Y’all. It’s another one of those days. I have to check the ole Goodreads to see what I’m reading because I HAVE NO IDEA.

And I totally just typed that is DIEA.

So, what am I reading? The one book I know for sure, because it’s the one I’ve been concentrating on, is Will Storr vs. the Supernatural by Will Storr. It’s pretty interesting. This guy, Will Storr, decides to investigate ghosts and the supernatural and decide for himself if it is real or not. He’s British, so he’s interviewing all the ghost societies and such. It’s obviously for RIP IX.

I just started listening to The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell for Trish’s read along yesterday. I haven’t gotten very far into it yet, but I’ve made it farther than I’ve ever made it while trying to read it. So, progress! I finished Marina by Carlos Ruiz Zafon Friday and OMG it was so creepy and good.

I’m still working through the book The Opposite of Worry: The Playful Parents Approach to Childhood Anxiety and Fear by Lawrence Cohen. As someone who has had lifelong anxiety and fear issues, you’d think I’d know how to handle this. Of course, I honestly never thought I would have to. I thought my issues were a result of my early childhood experiences. My daughter has had a much more stable and relatively calm life compared to mine. It’s looking like this may be a hereditary thing, as she’s starting to exhibit all the same symptoms I have. Will that dreaded P word coming on (PUBERTY!! AHHHH!!!!), I’m afraid this is the tip of the iceberg. This book has been great though, and we’re making progress on helping her learn how to control and deal with these feelings. Score one for Mama!

Lastly, I’m still working through Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed. I can only read a couple letters at a time, because most just break my heart. Talk about giving yourself fear and anxiety! Reading this book could do it!

On tap for me: getting into The House on Haunted Hill by Shirley Jackson more, some more nonfiction (not sure what yet), and gearing up for A More Diversiverse soon! I also really want to read The Shadow Hero by Gene Luan Yang and Sonny Liew before I have to take it back to the library.

On a more personal front, MY BABY TURNS SEVEN ON WEDNESDAY. SEVEN. We had his birthday party on Sunday and it was a blast. A Pokemon blast. He had a ball. The new job is going swimmingly. I love it. I seriously love it. I’m learning new stuff everyday and it’s FUN. Yes, FUN! I’m still working out how to blog more with less free time, obviously. Posting will be sporadic until I figure it out. :(

What are you reading this week? Tell me what’s good!

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Hosted weekly by super-awesome Sheila from BookJourney.

 

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Top Ten Tuesday – Come Eat At My Table

September 2, 2014 Meme 10

Or: Top Ten Book Characters That Would Be Sitting At My Lunch Table

Oh goodie! I LOVE lists like this!

1. Bod from The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman. I worry for Bod. I really do. What if he’s not getting enough to eat?

2. Kvothe from The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. I have THE hugest crush on him. OMG. *blush*

3. CeeCee from Saving CeeCee Honeycutt by Beth Hoffman. BFFs. ForEVAH.

4. Blue Sargent fromThe Raven Cycle books be Maggie Stiefvater. So we can dish on those Raven boys, ya?

5. Eleanor and 6. Park from Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell. We can talk comic books and music and stuff I can just sit back and watch them be adorable!

7. Jamie from Outlander by Diana Gabaldon. Apparently, I just want to sit and blush and not eat during lunch. Hey, this might be a great diet!!

8. Hermione from Harry Potter. I want to watch her wingardium leviosa the Lima beans away from the table.

9. Thursday Next from The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde. Once lunch is over, she can get us into something good, like Mr. Darcy in the lake, or The Shire in The Hobbit or something.

10. Todd from The Chaos Walking trilogy by Patrick Ness. Boy colt!!! *sniff*

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading This Week?

September 1, 2014 Books, Meme 7

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Happy Labor Day and the Unofficial Ending of Summer!!!

I know some are sad to see Summer end, but Fall is my FAVORITE. Plus, I’m ready for the humidity to take a freaking hike already.

I had high hopes to read and do laundry all day (bet you can’t guess which one excites me more) but the kids came up with a Family Game Day, so I have to judge that. I still hope to do some of the reading though. Heck, I’ve already read Lumberjanes #5, so I’m doing pretty good on the reading front! This week, I’m also reading a book on anxiety in children called The Opposite of Worry by Lawrence Cohen (research for the daughter, who is having some issues), Will Storr vs. The Supernatural: One Man’s Search for the Truth About Ghosts by Will Storr (I found it while cleaning up yesterday!), still dipping in and out of Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed, and I started listening to Marina by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. MY RIP IX is in full swing!

Edit: I totally forgot I started The Haunting of Hill House this weekend! Doh!

Whew! I think I have enough on MY plate! What are you reading this week?

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Hosted weekly by super-awesome Sheila from BookJourney.

 

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R.eaders I.mbibing P.eril IX

August 31, 2014 Books 7

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At last. Here it is. The air is not yet crisp here. The leaves are still green. I can’t pull out the sweaters and the boots, the soups and hot chocolates. Yet the Reader’s Imbibing Peril event, better known as RIP, brings with it the promise of my favorite season and of thrilling, terrifying, and strangely comforting, reading. I can’t believe that RIP is IX, and I can’t believe I’ve participated all IX times. As always, a huge shoutout to Carl, from Stainless Steel Droppings, for putting on another event. It would not be the start of fall without it.

I am excited to get started today.

My first read will be the read along that Andi and I are hosting on The Estella Society:

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I started it this morning. I sort of began live-Instagramming it also. I just couldn’t help it, so sorry for the spam if you follow me, but I was just so darn excited.

Since I’m taking part in Peril the First, I will read four books from the designated categories:

Mystery.
Suspense.
Thriller.
Dark Fantasy.
Gothic.
Horror.
Supernatural.

Some of my potential picks are:

The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
Dark Souls by Paula Morris
The Witch’s Daughter by Paula Brackston
Frankenstein by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley
The Raven by Edgar Allen Poe
The Boneshaker by Kate Milford
The Silent Land by Graham Joyce
The Supernatural Enhancements by Edgar Cantero
White is for Witching by Helen Oyeymi
The Removers by Andrew Meredith

And my now annual reread of Dracula by Bram Stoker. I bought a fantastic edition in Texas when I visited Andi in March and I’ve been holding on to it for just this occasion.

I also want to attempt Peril of the Short Story, in which I hope to read lots of short stories. I will pick from these two collections:

American Supernatural Tales by S. T. Joshi
Haunted Castles by Ray Russell

Do you have plans to participate? What are you reading? Do you have any books to recommend?

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Monthly Wrap Up – August 2014

August 30, 2014 Books, Monthly Wrap Up 5

SHUT UP. August is over? What the heck? Where did that go?

August was such a big month for me! I left the job I’ve pretty much had for the last 14 years for something new, exciting, and scary. Don’t worry, so far I’m loving my job at the university, but everything new comes with a bit of anxiety. August brought the start of school (THANK YOU GOD) and 5th graderness and 1st graderness. And one very irritable boy. He does not do well with changes in routines.

And, August brought reading craziness. Let’s see. What exactly DID I finish in August?

71. Spoiled Brats: Stories by Simon Rich
72. The Paper Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg
73. Blood of My Blood: Jasper Dent #3 by Barry Lyga
74. East of Eden by John Steinbeck, read by Richard Poe
75. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams, read by Stephen Fry
76. Lumberjanes #1 by Noelle Stevenson
77. Lumberjanes #2 by Noelle Stevenson
78. Lumberjanes #3 by Noelle Stevenson
79. Lumberjanes #4 by Noelle Stevenson
80. Displacement by Lucy Knisley
81. Sweetness #9 by Stephan Eirik Clark
82. Sweet Tooth #1: Out of the Woods by Jeff Lemire
83. Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys, read by Lauren Fortgang

HOL-E-E COW. Course, a good bit of that is comics and graphic novels, but STILL. I think I had a fantastic August myself. Favorites include Spoiled Brats, The Paper Magician, Blood of My…oh, who am I kidding. Everything was awesome

On the plate for September:

I’m reading The Sparrow with Trish for her readalong.

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There’s A More Diverse Universe with Aarti mid month.

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And then OF COURSE, there is RIP IX (more on that soon) and the Estella Society’s reading The Haunting of Hill House! OMG, September, you will be so busy! I love it!

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How was your August? What’s on tap for September? Are you joining in any of these bookish shenanigans?

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Wordless Wednesday – 022

August 27, 2014 Photos 6

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Not especially recent, but they are still around and getting big! Plus, we had a surprise! One is a boy! I need to take a new picture. And show some eggs!

More Wordless Wednesday fun here.


 

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