R.eaders I.mbibing P.eril IX


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:


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:

Dark Fantasy.

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?

Yes. Yes, I Am A Sheep. #30DayRead

If you follow Andi over at Estella’s Revenge you know that 1) she’s my bestie, 2) she has started Booktubing and 3) she tends to talk me into things. Things like the 30 Day Read the Booktubers have started. The 30 day read is just that; an attempt to read a book a day for 30 days. Or, in the case of those like Andi, setting a goal of a certain page amount (in Andi’s case 125-150 pages).

And yes. She talked me into it.

So, I’ll be attempting to read at least a book a day and the very least 125-150 pages.

I’ve started with The Crimson Petal and the White and Strangers in Paradise #3, since I was already reading them. I’m going to keep track of my reading here, if you care to follow along.

Day 1: 30 pages of The Crimson Petal and the White. Finished Strangers in Paradise #3 (116 pages). Total 146 pages.
Day 2: 22 pages of Crimson. 121 pages Me Talk Pretty One Day. Total: 123
Day 3: 20 pages Crimson. 123 pages Sedaris. Total: 143.
Day 4: 20 pages Crimson. 94 pages Sedaris. Total: 114.
Day 5: 16 pages Crimson. 10 pages Sedaris. 77 pages The Raven Girl by Audrey Niffenegger. 120 pages Strangers in Paradise #4. Total: 223
Day 6: 10 pages Strangers in Paradise. 71 pages Reboot by Amy Tintera. Total: 81.
Day 7: 291 pages Reboot.
Day 8: 45 pages Crimson. 44 pages Strangers in Paradise #4. 8 pages Seduction by M.J. Rose. Total: 107.
Day 9: 40 pages Crimson
Day 10: 40 pages Crimson.
Day 11: 50 pages Crimson. 36 pages Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein. Total 86 pages.


Reboot by Amy Tintera
The Raven Girl by Audrey Niffenegger
Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris
Strangers in Paradise #3 by Terry Moore

Making Reading Plans….

It’s the time of year! When the new crop of reading challenges pop up and, even though I’ve sworn not to join any, I do it anyway! So, let’s see what I have cooking so far…

2012 TBR challenge

The TBR Pile Challenge 2013 is organized by Adam of Roof Beam Reader. The idea behind this challenge is that you read older books on your shelves, books that have been there for longer than a year. They deserve to be read, too!

The Goal: To finally read 12 books from your “to be read” pile (within 12 months).

1. Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons
2. Affinity by Sarah Waters
3. The Namesake by Jhumpta Lahiri
4. Saplings by Noel Streatfeild
5. Before Women Had Wings by Connie May Fowler
6. The Bells: A Novel by Richard Harvell
7. Beyond Black: A Novel by Hilary Mantel
8. The Bone People: A Novel by Keri Hulme
9. Symphony by Jude Morgan
10. The Chronicles of the Chrestomanci by Diana Wynne Jones
11. Atonement by Ian McEwan
12. The Enchantress of Florence by Salman Rushdie

2012 Back to Classics Challenge

The Required Categories:

  1. A 19th Century Classic – Bleak House by Charles Dickens
  2. A 20th Century Classic – Excellent Women by Barbara Pym  
  3. A Pre-18th or 18th Century Classic: – The Female Quixote by Charlotte Lennox
  4. A Classic that relates to the African-American Experience – Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
  5. A Classic Adventure – King Solomon’s Mines by H. Rider Haggard
  6. A Classic that prominently features an Animal – The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame 

Optional Categories:

A.  Re-read a Classic – Either The Scarlet Letter or Dracula by Bram Stoker
B.  A Russian Classic – Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak
C.  A Classic Non-Fiction title – The Life of Charlotte Bronte by Elizabeth Gaskell
D.  A Classic Children’s/Young Adult title – A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
E.  Classic Short Stories Burning Your Boats: The Collected Short Stories by Angela Carter

Other goals:

Read more nonfiction
Read more classics
Read (or try to read) Dickens again. Dickens is my literary nemesis. We hate each other. He’s my Moriarty.
Try Diana Wynne Jones again. With a different book. Fire & Hemlock…it’s another nemesis.
Try Eva Ibbotson again.
Read more with the children.

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At the rate I’m going, I may be wrapping up The Count of Monte Cristo this day. If (HOPEFULLY) I’m finished with the Count by then, I’ll be reading something else. Not sure what yet, though.

I also plan (hope) (wishful think) that I’ll keep better track of my challenge participation this time. I’ll have a page dedicated to all the challenges I join throughout the year and will try (no promises) to update monthly. We shall see! I hope to finish more than the RIP and the OUAT challenges this year!

What challenges have you joined? Go on, get me in more trouble. 🙂

Once Upon a Time – a Reader's Pool

for you, Debi. And anyone else interested. 🙂

Here are the pool of books I have to choose from, for the Once Upon a Time Challenge.

  • The Princess Bride by William Goldman (time for a reread)
  • Among Others by Jo Walton
  • The Wild Wood by Charles de Lint
  • Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin
  • The Magic Toyshop by Angela Carter
  • Burning Your Boats: The Collected Short Stories by Angela Carter (for the short story part)
  • Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
  • Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
  • Tam Lin by Pamela Dean
  • Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
  • Magyk by Angie Sage
  • The Secret History of Fantasy edited by Peter S. Beagle (for the short story part)
  • The Illustrated Man by Ray Bradburt (short story)
  • The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne M. Valente
  • Lips Touch, Three Times by Laini Taylor
  • Temereraire by Naomi Novik
  • Fincher’s Brides by Gregory Frost
  • Jack of Kinrowan by Charles de Lint
  • Waifs and Strays by Charles de Lint
  • White as Snow by Tanith Lee
  • The Summer Tree by Guy Gavriel Kay
  • Matilda by Roald Dahl (with the kids)
  • Midnight Never Come by Marie Brennan
  • Witches by Roald Dahl (with the kids)
  • Into the Green by Charles de Lint
I’m sure there are more, but I’m too tired to hunt them down. What do you think? Read any of these? Which do you recommend? I’d love to know!


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

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading This Week? is a weekly event to list the books  finished last week, the books currently being read, and the books to be finish this week. It was created by J.Kaye’s Book Blog, but is now being hosted by Sheila from One Person’s Journey Through a World of  Books.

If my reading this weekend is any indication, I won’t be reading much of anything this week! I was in a brain fog, couldn’t focus on anything more complicated than magazines and television. I think I’m so excited that RIP is starting on Thursday and I know all I want to read is books for that. Plus, I know I have a copy of The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern winging its way to me and I seriously can’t wait to get started on it. So I may not be reading much until Thursday.

Since I couldn’t seem to get into any books this weekend, I used the time to make my RIP pool. See:

I have:

The House at Riverton by Kate Morton
Daphne by Justine Picardie (group read with Debi, Chris, Ana and Kelly)
The Seance by John Harwood (only been trying to read this during RIP forever)
Will Storr vs. the Supernatural by Will Storr
The Nature of Monsters by Clare Clark
Beyond Black by Hilary Mantel
The Heretic’s Daughter by Kathleen Kent
The Map of Time by Felix J Palma
Ghostwalk by Rebecca Stott
In the Devil’s Snare by Mary Beth Norton
The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters (I’m itching to reread it for some reason) (oh, cause it’s awesome)
The Sister by Poppy Adams
The Monsters: Mary Shelly and the Curse of Frankenstein by Dorothy Hoobler
The Suspicions of Mr. Whicher by  Kate Summerscale
Inamorata by Joseph Gangemi

Not picture are The Night Circus, which hasn’t arrived yet, and The Lantern by Deborah Lawrenson, which I haven’t bought yet, but will be reading with Carl, Kelly, and whomever signs up for the group read. To say I can’t wait for Thursday is an understatement. RIP always signifies the beginning of my most favorite season.

So, how about you? I hope your attention span is better than mine and you’re getting some reading in. What’s good? Are you reading for RIP? What’s in your pool?


Reading in the New Year Day 3

Wooo hooo! I just finished Waiting for Columbus. It was amazing.  I’ll review it soon, after I’ve digested it a bit.  Off to work on Geektastic and pick my next read.  I can’t decide… Soulless, Marcelo in the Real World or something else? Maybe a graphic novel?

Books read: 2
Pages read: 514
Currently reading: Geektastic

Update 1/3/2010 8:45 AM

Started reading East of Eden for the Classic Reads Book club read-a-long.  And wow.  The writing is so gorgeous and rich.  I’m breathless with the opening paragraphs, all the evocative descriptions on the land.  I’m glad I was planning to read this in small bites, so I can savor it.

Witness, and it’s hard to pick one quote:

On the wide level acres of the valley the topsoil lay deep and fertile.  It required only a rich winter of rain to make it break forth in grass and flowers.  The spring flowers in a wet year were unbelievable.  The whole valley floor, and the foothills too, would be carpeted with lupins and poppies.  Once a woman told me that color flowers would seem more bright if you added a few white flowers to give the colors definition.  Every petal of blue puin is edged with white, so that field of lupins is more blue than you can possibly imagine.  And mixed with these were splashes of California poppies.  These too are of a burning color-not orange, not gold, but if pure gold were liquid and could raise a cream, that golden cream might be like the color of the poppies.  When their season was over the yellow mustard came up and grew to a great height.  When my grandfather came into the valley the mustard was so tall that a man on horseback showed only his head above the yellow flowers.  On the uplands the grass would be strewn with buttercups, with hen-and-chickens, with black-centered yellow violets.  And a little later in the season there would be red and yellow stands of Indian paintbrush.  These were the flowers of the open places exposed to the sun.

Under the live oaks, shaded and dusky, the maidenhair flourished and gave a good smell, and under the mossy banks of the water courses whole clumps of five-fingered ferns and goly-backs hung down.  Then there were harebells, tiny lanterns, cream white and almost sinful looking, and these were so rare and magical that a child, finding one, felt singled out and special all day long.

It’s like watching a painter brush on a whole world with nothing but words. Gorgeous.

Books read: 2
Pages read: 540
Currently reading: East of Eden

Update 1/3/2010 4:28 PM

So, have you ever gone somewhere with the intention of bringing your current book, only to show up at said place without said book?  That is totally what happened today when I went to my in-laws house for lunch. I FORGOT GEEKTASTIC, the book I was intending to devote the rest of my reading time to today.

Luckily I had a spare book in my pocketbook.  So I wound up reading a lot of The Game on Diet this afternoon.  Which is good, since I want to loose a few pounds and need all the help I can get! Now that I’m on, I’m getting back to Geektastic. I doubt I can finish it today, but it’s a fun little read for a Sunday night.

Books read: 2
Pages read: 578
Currently reading: Geektastic

Wrap Up 1/5/2010

I haven’t had time to wrap this up! Or, well, actually, I kinda forgot.  Sometime after my last update, I ran out of steam.  Too much reading!  It gave me a headache!.  So I didn’t really read much after that.  But I had a great time and loved reading in the new year!  Thanks Kristin for having such a fun readathon!

Final totals:

Books read: 2
Pages read: 578

Reading in the New Year Day 2

Well, since my son got me up well before dawn, I’ve been up for awhile.  I read another short story in Geektastic, by Scott Westerfeld and therefore my favorite one so far, before getting into Waiting for Columbus again.  I’ve had to pause to make breakfast, give medicine (she’s feeling better!), and do some laundry.  I’m going to go enjoy my egg muffins and read some more!

Books finished: 1
Pages read: 276
Currently Reading: Waiting for Columbus

Update 1/2/2010 12:34 PM

The edge to his voice, the clipped tone, takes her off guard.  She cannot, will not say that this book of poems is one of her favorites-that it is a book her father gave to her mother.  This book is one of her few treasures.  These poems move through her as an old lover would; they know where to touch and when, and sometimes they surprise.  -Waiting for Columbus page 122.

Took a break to watch Neil Gaiman’s Statuesque on YouTube.  It was delightful!

Neil Gaiman’s Statuesque

Books finished: 1
Pages read: 347
Currently Reading: Waiting for Columbus

Update 1/2/2010 4:27 PM

Took another break to make some cookies. Orange Cranberry and Walnut. They were YUMMY.  Also took a break from Waiting for Columbus to read another short story in Geektastic, the one by Cassandra Clare.  Liked it.  Now back to WoC. It’s still so very, very good.

Books finished: still 1
Pages read: 390
Currently Reading: Waiting for Columbus

Our Mutual Read


I need another challenge like I need a hole in the head, yet, this was already something I was really wanting to accomplish in 2010, so I signed myself right up! I needs to read me some more Wilkie! And maybe that wanker Dickens too.

It’s a Victorian Literature Reading Challenge!

Plus the awesome Amanda at The Blog Jar is hosting, tis her first challenge and, well, dang it I can’t resist!

The DETAILS: This challenge will run from January 1st, 2010 to December 31st 2010.  And it is completely okay to double-dip, what you read/watch here can count on other challenges!

How to participate:  email Amanda or leave a comment to this post and I’ll add you to the blog so you can publish your reviews/updates on Our Mutual Read.  Also, I’ll add your blog to our participant list.

Next, decide on what level you’d like to participate:
~ Level 1: 4 books, at least 2 written during 1837 – 1901.  The other books may be Neo-Victorian or non-fiction.
~ Level 2: 8 books, at least 4 written during 1837 – 1901.  The other books may be Neo-Victorian or non-fiction.
~ Level 3: 12 books, at least 6 written during 1837 – 1901.  The other books may be Neo-Victorian or non-fiction.

Then, determine if you are up to a mini-challenge:
Period Film Mini-Challenge — watch at least 6 films that take place between 1837 – 1901 (they don’t necessarily have to be based on a book) and post a review.

Short Story Mini-Challenge — read 12 short stories written or taking place between 1837 – 1901 and post a review.

I think I’m going to try for Level 1 and hopefully be delighted when I make it to Level 2. And I might through in some short stories whilst I am at it.  Amanda has set up a blog for Our Mutual Read, if you are interested in joining.  I hope you do; it is going to be wicked fun reading the Victorians!

But wait! What do I plan to read you ask?  That is an EXCELLENT question because really, what is the best part of signing up for challenges?  THE BOOK LISTS. Am I right?  So, without further ado…

You wouldn’t believe the how long Wilkie has been hanging out here.  He’s getting quite insistent that I read more of his books.  So.  I will most likely be reading either Armadale, The Moonstone (*gasp* I know, I’ve read half and don’t know why it was only half), The Law and the Lady, and No Name. I also might reread The Woman in White and The Rogue’s Life because they are the BEE’S KNEES.  I also have some of that wanker Dicken’s books lying around.  Most specifically is Hard Times because it is the only one I can find at the moment. I just know I have more.  Somewhere. I think. I also wouldn’t mind getting into Thomas Hardy again, he of the most tragic novel I ever read (Tess of D’Urbervilles).  Then there is also Rudyard Kipling, Robert Louis Stevenson and, the ever elusive (for me), Bram Stoker.

I would also like to throw some of the ladies in there.  Some M.E. Braddon, Elizabeth Gaskell ( have the humongous Wives and Daughters on my shelf. It’s right there, staring at me in all it’s pinkness.  WHY B&N did you make it that horrid PINK COLOR???), ole George Eliot and some of the lovely Brontë‘s.  Perhaps this will be the year I make it through the insufferable Wuthering Heights?   Yeah, I doubt that too.

So, here’s to going Victorian in 2010. I do hope you’ll join us. Those Victorians made for some entertaining readings.

Are you ready?

deweys-readathonbuttonFor the readathon??  There is still time to sign up, go do it now! It is SO MUCH FUN and NOT TO BE MISSED.  Seriously.  You’ll be sorry if you do!  Although if you have to work and stuff, I totally understand and will miss you horribly.

So, I’ve been assessing my pile, which has quickly grown to the height of my knee.  I’m thinking I may have too many books in my pile and that it may need culling.  But what do I pull out!  I have a pretty even mix of YA dystopian, graphic novels, and a little bit of miscellaneous thrown in like a mystery, a couple of foodie books, and even a manga.  Which, by the way, how the HECK to do you read true MANGA because dude, WTF this stuff looks like it reads backwards.  I’m talking of Cirque du Freak by the way.   And yes, I am an idiot, thanks for reminding me.

So, yeah, here is what I am thinking of keeping:

  • Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld because I promised Kelly
  • The Ask and the Answer by Patrick Ness because I promised ME
  • Chicken with Plums by Marjane Satrapi because dude, it will take like 30 minutes to read it
  • How to Buy a Love of Reading by Tanya Egan Gibson because I have wanted to read it since I saw it on the library shelf weeks ago!
  • Uglies by Scott Westerfeld because I read the first couple of chapters already and I really, really, REALLY want to get back to it
  • and I’d really like to finish The Kingmaking by Helen Hollick which is so good and I haven’t had time to really read 0n it this week thanks to all the sickies in the house

In other news, I think I have secured babysitters for the kids for most of Saturday, so I will hopefully only have the hubby to deal with.  Which shouldn’t be hard, I’ll just stick in a movie for it and he’ll be out of my hair too.  I am really looking forward to spending the day curled up in my reading chair and at the computer with you guys. I’ve missed you all so much this week!  I really need to do some blog hopping and see what all you healthy peoples have been up to this week!  I’ll definitely see yous all tomorrow!  And possibly tonight, if you’re on Twitter!