READATHON TBR || BookTube-A-Thon

 

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I wouldn’t be a good BookTube follower if I would not follow and try to participate in the BookTube-A-Thon, a weeklong Readathon event that (so far as I know) started in Ariel Bissett’s YouTube Channel and became a happy celebration of BookTubers and reading.

So, without much further ado (after all, I should be tackling my TBR right now), here is my TBR list with the challenges I finished already and my TBR for the yet to be done challenges:

The 2017 Reading Challenges:

1/ Read a book with a person on the cover.

For this challenge, I chose “Skinwalker (Jane Yellowrock, #1)” by Faith Hunter.
My review: I’m right now on page 32. I have only started but so far I like this book. Let’s see where it goes.

2/ Read a hyped book.

I heard frequently of “Every Heart a Doorway(Wayward Children, #1)” by Seanan McGuire on Youtube and even now it seems to be one of the most read books in the Readathon.

My review: 3 stars. A very interesting premise, but somehow underdeveloped. Great story ideas were thrown in a shallow way that surely needed more depth. I hope the next books in the series develop it further.

3/ Finish a book in one day.

This was the first challenge I finished because short is quickly done. For this challenge, I chose the “Curran POV Collection”, a collection of scenes you can download on the web page of the authors Ilona and Gordon Andrews. This scenes will mostly only make sense if you read the Kate Daniel’s series (and I sincerely recommend this series as awesome paranormal fantasy).

My review: 5 stars, ** spoiler alert **

Curran: “I spat the ear out and knocked it toward him with my paw. No, you can keep it. Doesn’t taste that great.” This line still makes me laugh by myself one day after reading this book.

Curran POV shows his side on the scenes that were mainly told in Kate’s POV during the series. It shows the hard side of what is needed to be the alpha of the shapeshifters in Kate’s world. Not an easy day at the office for sweet and wild Curran. 😉
I wished there would be more of this series than only the next book. This is also a short book that you can (unfortunately) read in one day.

4/ Read about a character that is very different from you.

I’m planning to read “Old Man’s War (Old Man’s War #1)” by John Scalzi because the character is an old man, someone very different than me. If I don’t have time to read it this week, I’ll read it the next week so my review will be here eventually.


5/ Finish a book completely outdoors.

I’m not sure I’ll manage this in a very rainy July? When I get a couple of sunny hours I do take the books to the playground where my kids play, so most books have seen sunlight. But to finish it all outdoors would be unpractical right now.


6/ Read a book you bought because of the cover.

“Northanger Abbey (The Austen Project #2) by Val McDermid”. The one published by HarperFiction with the gloomy Abbey on the cover. Besides the cover, I also chose this book to finally read something by Val McDermid, an author my mother likes a lot and because I did like the original “Northanger Abbey” by J.Austen.

My review for this book: 5 stars, A fresh and modern retelling of a classic. Now, can someone please tell me where can I find the Hebridean Harpies series?


7/ Read seven books.

If I have the time I’ll read “The Archived (The Archived #1)” by Victoria Schwab still this week. But probably I’ll delay until next week and post my review later on. After all, why hurry? Only non-connoisseurs drink a good wine quickly.
And you? Are you participating in this Readathon? Let me know in the comments!

UPDATE AFTER THE READATHON

I didn’t manage to finish the fourth book, but I think that 3 books with my hectic real life were quite OK. I did start Skinwalker and “This Savage Song”, which I read until page 61.
Not so bad and I also managed to read a lot on the playground, so I consider Challenge number 5 half done. 🙂

So my final results were:

1/ Read a book with a person on the cover.

Skinwalker (Jane Yellowrock #1) by Faith Hunter — 32 pages

2/ Read a hyped book.

Every Heart a Doorway (Wayward Children #1) by Seanan McGuire — 176 pages

3/ Finish a book in one day.

Curran POV Collection (Curran POV #1-9) by Gordon Andrews, Ilona Andrews  — 157 pages

I skipped Challenge 4 and will be reading this book later.

5/ Finish a book completely outdoors.

This Savage Song (Monsters of Verity #1) by Victoria Schwab — 61 pages, finished after the readathon.

Later update (3/8/17): I didn’t manage to read this whole book outdoors, but all my books have been outdoors one moment or another so I consider this challenge half done.

This was a 5 stars book with great characters and an original and poetic story.

6/ Read a book you bought because of the cover.

Northanger Abbey (The Austen Project #2) by Val McDermid — 358 pages

And I didn’t read the seventh book yet, but later on, steady as I go…

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My Book Reading Challenge 2016

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This year I was catching up with my favorite series in Paranormal Fantasy, Kate Daniels by Ilona Andrews. In this genre, I also discovered a really entertaining new series, Mercy Thompson by Patricia Briggs, which I was almost binge-reading until book eight. I was reading a surprising amount of Young Adult, from which my favorite was the Throne of Glass series, by Sarah J.Maas. My favorite Fantasy with Science-Fiction elements books was the Mating Flight Duology with dragons and LGBT characters by Bard Bloom. And my favorite book on writing was 5 Secrets of Story Structure by K.M. Weiland due to it giving me a good overview of story structure.

I’ll focus more on this year favorite books on my next week’s post, but for now, let’s talk about this year’s challenge.

I managed to complete my reading challenge of 50 books!

And actually surpassed this number, reading 58 books this year (woo-hoo!)

I was also trying to follow the categories presented in the Reading Challenge of the Facebook group called “The Dragon Rocketship”, which is a group on Facebook about fantasy, science-fiction, (hence the dragon and the rocket ship) and writing. Since this group also has many writers, a couple of the categories included reading books from its members, something I was happy to do since I’ve been friends on Facebook with a lot of them for a couple of years already.

 

So here are the Challenge Categories I was fulfilling:

(though a lot of the books I read aren’t into any and vice-versa)

 

1. A book that was written by a member of The Dragon’s Rocketship:

Taming Shadows (Revelations #1) by Fiona Skye (Author)
This book is way better than more than a couple of traditionally published bestsellers I’ve read last years. I loved Jaguar, (the protagonist alter ego), the characters, the plot, the world, and the story inspired recipes at the end of the book.

2. A book at the bottom of your To Read pile:

Howl’s Moving Castle (Howl’s Moving Castle #1) by Diana Wynne Jones.
This was sent to the bottom of my TBR list due to its slow beginning. The characters in this book, especially Howl, are perhaps not always likable, but always intriguing. You’ll go on reading just to know how the story will develop and end.

3. The next book in a series you never finished:

Witch & Wizard (Witch & Wizard #1) by James Patterson (Goodreads Author), Gabrielle Charbonnet.
I’ll probably never finish this series since I feel it’s targeted at much younger readers. Still, it’s an entertaining book if you don’t expect too much depth from the characters.

4. A book you can read in one sitting:

Nail Your Novel Instant Fix: 100 tips for fascinating characters by Roz Morris (Author).
This short book is packed with interesting writing tips. I recommend it also for revision as a helpful character checklist.

5. A book with a dragon:

Mine by Bryan Fields (Author)
I liked the story concept and the Steampunk details very much. The end though was a bit rushed up, and I felt there were not enough pages to develop the characters and the interesting premise. Still, an entertaining short story.

6. A book with a rocketship:

Nine Tomorrows by Isaac Asimov
My opinion is that you can’t go wrong with science fiction from Asimov.

7. A book with an LGBT Character:

Mating Flight: A Non-Romance of Dragons(Mating Flight #1) by Bard Bloom (Author), Tod Wills (Illustrator)
This book is very entertaining and it’s a page turner reading. I read this book in three days because I didn’t manage to put it down. I liked the main character, a fiery-tempered dragoness and all the witty dialogues and funny situations with the other dragons. I’ll be reading the next book in the Duology to see how this adventure ends.

8. Book 1 of a trilogy:

Daughter of Smoke & Bone (Daughter of Smoke & Bone #1) by Laini Taylor (Author). This book has an interesting premise, setting and characters and I’ll go on reading the series. Still, three stars due to the excess of romance in detriment of the fantasy plot.

9. Book 2 of a trilogy:

Days of Blood & Starlight (Daughter of Smoke & Bone #2) by Laini Taylor (Author)
I liked this book much more than the first of the series because it had more story and turning points to it. I also like the underlying theme of the book: the peace and war duality. And I’m curious to see where the story is going.

10. Book 3 of a trilogy:

Dreams of Gods & Monsters (Daughter of Smoke & Bone #3) by Laini Taylor (Author)
** spoiler alert ** I found the book quite good, and perhaps the best of the trilogy. But I must say that I found the end frustrating, with a huge hook. Is the series going on? And if not why to leave it like if the trilogy was the prequel to another book? If this is to finish here I think it would have been better to have finished with a proper ending and with the peace Akiva and Karou always looked for and deserved.

11. A book by an author you’ve never read that is a member of The Dragon’s Rocketship:

Salvage (The Land Taking Records Book 1) by M.J. Kobernus
The short-story pacing was too fast at its end, leaving some things lacking development, but the concept was quite interesting and I’ll probably take a look at its sequence to know how it goes on.

12. An anthology:

Small Magics (Kate Daniels 0.5, 5.3, 5.6 ) by Ilona Andrews (Author)
Short-stories from one of my favorite authors, in the same awesome world of a series I love. What’s not to like? 🙂

13. A book with magic:

Magic Study (The Chronicles of Ixia #2) by Maria V. Snyder (Author)
This is the second book of an interesting fantasy series. Still, it’s slower paced and more romantic than what I usually read.

14. A book that scares you:

Sins of the Future by Chasity Nicole (Author), Debbie Manber Kupfer (Author), Jackie Pitchford, Misha Burnett (Author), Matt Lovell, R.L. Andrew, Angela Garratt, Don Miskel (Author) , Boyd Miles, Jen Ponce (Author), Stephen Blake (Author), Kerry E.B. Black (Author), C. Lloyd Brill, Steven Soul, Leticia Toraci (Author), Cleve Sylcox (Illustrator).
I’m glad I was able to join this awesome anthology with scary future scenarios; which are bound to haunt the reader even after the book is finished.

15. A book that makes you laugh:

Agent to the Stars by John Scalzi (Author)
Who read and liked “The Ultimate Hitchhiker’s Guide (Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy #1-5)” will probably like this entertaining book as well. I must say that it’s not my favorite kind of science fiction since I prefer when science-fiction is the main theme. But, like the Hitchhiker’s guide, this is also a book which uses sci-fi to talk about humans themselves.

16. Read a book of a series with 5 or more books (1st):

Moon Called (Mercy Thompson #1) by Patricia Briggs
A fun page-turner, I couldn’t put it down.

17. Read a book of a series with 5 or more books (2nd):

Blood Bound (Mercy Thompson #2) by Patricia Briggs
I liked this book even more than the first one in the series. This one has vampires and they are dangerous and mostly evil (as they should be). It was a nice page-turning reading for my Halloween. 🙂

18. Read a book of a series with 5 or more books (3rd):

Iron Kissed (Mercy Thompson #3) by Patricia Briggs

19. Read a book of a series with 5 or more books (4th):

Bone Crossed (Mercy Thompson #4) by Patricia Briggs

20. Read a book of a series with 5 or more books (5th):

Silver Borne (Mercy Thompson #5) by Patricia Briggs

21. A nerdy book:

Youth by Isaac Asimov
I don’t know if there is something that can be called nerdy about books since I consider them really cool (probably because I’m a nerd at heart), but if so I think you could call a short story by one of my favorite authors nerdy.

22. A non-fiction book:

5 Secrets of Story Structure: How to Write a Novel That Stands Out (Helping Writers Become Authors Book 6) by K.M. Weiland (Author)
I found this book quite helpful, it’s about story structure in a relatively summarized and easy to understand way. Great if you want an overview of Story Structure before you go into too many details. For me, this was helpful because I usually want to have a look at the whole subject before I look at each element in detail. So, if you are having difficulties to understand story structure read this short and concise book, you’ll get it in no time, it’s awesome!

23. A young adult book:

City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments #1) by Cassandra Clare (Author)
This is an entertaining summer reading. It has a couple of plot devices that would fit in a soap opera, but there is nothing wrong with it if you are looking for a young adult reading just to relax.

24. A book you borrow from a friend:

Tales from P.A.W.S. by Debbie Manber Kupfer.

Three interesting background stories from the world of P.A.W.S. that made me quite curious about the book they are based on.

25. A book an older relative recommends:

I was reading Belgravia by Julian Fellowes recommended by my mother. Awesome book, with all the charm of Downtown Abbey and an even more interesting story. Loved it and can’t recommended it enough. It was one of my favorites this year.

 

So, I hope you liked my small challenge list and see you next week with a closer look at my 2016 favorite books!

 

 

My Reading Challenges – 2015 and 2016:

I plan to read 50 books in 2016, that’s 5 more than last year. I hope I manage to keep the ball bouncing.

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2015 Reading Challenge:

Last year I managed to complete the following categories, not all books I read were in a challenge category, but that’s how I roll 😉

1- A classic romance: Lady Susan by Jane Austen

2- A book with a number in the title: 1,000 Awesome Writing Prompts by Ryan Andrew Kinder

3- A book written by someone under 30: Hypnagogic Shifters: Superposition by Penelope M. Fernandez

4- A book with nonhuman characters: The Circle of the Thirteenth Cat by Bryan Fields

5- A book with a one-word title: Fledglings by K.M.Herkes

6- A book of short stories: The Whisperer in the Darkness by H.P.Lovecraft

7- A book set in a different country: Of Love and Other Demons by Gabriel García Márquez

8- A nonfiction book: Self-Publishing the Hard Way by Brian Parker

9- A popular author’s first book: Pebble in the sky by Isaac Asimov

10- A book at the bottom of your to-read list: Self-Editing for Fiction Writers by Renni Browne and David King

11- A book your mom loves: Death comes to Pemberley by P.D.James

12 – A book more than 100 years old: Flatland by Edwin Abbott Abbott

13- A book based entirely on its cover: The Spirit of a Witch by Sarah Jane Avory

14- A book you were supposed to read in school but didn’t: The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger

15- A book you can finish in a day: Inklings: 300 Starts, Plots, and Challenges to Inspire your Horror, Science Fiction, and Fantasy Stories by Leslie J. Anderson, Jarod K. Anderson.

16-A book with antonyms in the title: Mastering showing and telling in your fiction by Marcy Kennedy.

17- A book that came out the year you were born: Rendezvous with Rama by Arthur C.Clarke.

18- A trilogy: Divergent, Insurgent and Allegiant by Veronica Roth.

19- A book set in the future: Ready Player One by Ernest Cline.

20- A book with magic: Magic Rises: A Kate Daniels Novel by Ilona Andrews.

21- A book by an author you’ve never read before: The Martian by Andy Weir.

22- A book you own but have never read: Characters, Emotion & Viewpoint by Nancy Kress.

23- A book written by an author with your same initials: He’s Just Not That Into You: The No-excuses Truth to Understanding Guys by by Greg Behrendt (Goodreads Author), Liz Tuccillo.

24- A funny book: Mecha-Tale by Sarah Jane Avory

25- A book by a female author: Mirrored Worlds by Shauna Scheets

26- A book from an author you love (that you haven’t yet read): This Side of the Grave (Night Huntress #5) by Jeaniene Frost