Wednesday, April 26, 2017

2017 Series Challenge: Update #1

I realized just now that I was supposed to update my progress for my series challenge in the beginning of April. I obviously did not do that. OOPS.

At the beginning of 2017 I was in the middle of 63 series. In March, I went through my TBR on Goodreads because it was over 3000 books and that is entirely too many. I decided to take some of the series off of my list because I was no longer interested in finishing the series and life is too short for subpar reads!

As of 4/26...
I have finished 0 series.
I have started 1 new series: My Lady Janies
I have read 8 books in series.

I am currently in the middle of 57 series.

You can check out my list of series books here. I will be back in the very beginning July and hopefully that will actually be in the beginning of July!

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Book Review: Buzz Books 2017: Young Adult Spring/Summer

I requested another collection of excerpts from Publishers Lunch - this particular edition was for YA Spring and Summer 2017 books. This collection contained 18 books. I already had 6 of the books on my TBR, I added 2 more, and removed 1 after reading the excerpts. I skipped one because it was a sequel to a book I have not read and then two because I couldn't get into them.

I was gifted this ebook via Netgalley.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Book Review: 10 Things I Can See From Here by Carrie Mac

Publish Date: February 28, 2017
320 pages [Hardcover edition]
Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers

Perfect for fans of Finding Audrey and Everything, Everything, this is the poignant and uplifting story of Maeve, who is dealing with anxiety while falling in love with a girl who is not afraid of anything.

Think positive.
Don’t worry; be happy.
Keep calm and carry on.

Maeve has heard it all before. She’s been struggling with severe anxiety for a long time, and as much as she wishes it was something she could just talk herself out of, it’s not. She constantly imagines the worst, composes obituaries in her head, and is always ready for things to fall apart. To add to her troubles, her mom—the only one who really gets what Maeve goes through—is leaving for six months, so Maeve will be sent to live with her dad in Vancouver.

Vancouver brings a slew of new worries, but Maeve finds brief moments of calm (as well as even more worries) with Salix, a local girl who doesn’t seem to worry about anything. Between her dad’s wavering sobriety, her very pregnant stepmom insisting on a home birth, and her bumbling courtship with Salix, this summer brings more catastrophes than even Maeve could have foreseen. Will she be able to navigate through all the chaos to be there for the people she loves?

My Thoughts:
I was gifted this book via Netgalley and also won a paperback ARC via a Goodreads Giveaway.
I got 60 pages in, roughly right under 20% into the book. I got to the point where I just didn't want to pick it up to continue it. I was very interested in this story because over the last year, I have developed anxiety that has started to interrupt my day-to-day life. I have had 2 panic attacks. I have read one book with a MC that suffered with anxiety and I really connected with that character because I now understand what it feels like. I really expected to connect with Maeve. In fact, she sounds like me to an extent...where she is constantly thinking about things that could go wrong. However, I don't know if it's the "voice" that it is written in, but it's so hard to read and not feel annoyed, if that makes sense. I, by no means, think Maeve is stupid for feeling the way she does or that her anxieties are silly. I have thought the same things as her. But the voice was difficult for me to connect with.

Monday, April 3, 2017

Books I Read in March

My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows - 5 stars (finished 3/4)
I had heard from so many Booktubers that this book was laugh-out-loud funny. I know that usually, for me, this means that I will find it funny, but not actually LOL. I 100% LOL'd multiple times throughout this read. It was so so funny. I also had heard that there were a lot of interjections from the narrators, however, if there were, they weren't very stand-outish to me. I loved this book so much. I loved the "historic" parts and I loved the fantasy parts. The characters were wonderful and rich. The plot moved. I'm not sure how the writing was split up between the three authors, but it was done very well and was not noticeable whatsoever.

My favorite passages were mostly book-related as Lady Jane was a bookworm. I won't share all of them, but I will share this one. It's not my most favorite, but it's close.

""I've read all the books we have." She wrinkled her nose. "Armies aren't very good about carrying libraries with them. I can't imagine why. We'd fight so much less if everyone would just sit down and read."" - Lady Jane, p.427

Symptoms of Being Human by Jeff Garvin - 4.5 stars (finished 3/14)
While organizing my Kindle books into a new system (by genre), I reread the synopsis of Symptoms and knew I wanted and needed to read it ASAP. I was not disappointed at all. It was very easy to connect with the characters and story. I've seen a few people say it had no point or plot, but I disagree. I think there was definitely a clear story arc.

Symptoms takes on the story of high schooler, Riley, who identifies as gender fluid, but is not out to anyone except for Dr. Ann, Riley's therapist. Riley is also the child of a congressman who is up for reelection in a conservative county. Riley sees coming out as something that would mess up the Congressman's career and put the family in the public eye for scrutiny. Riley is overwhelming so concerned for how everything will affect those around him/her. Riley doesn't want anyone hurt.

The descriptions of how Riley felt really helped me to understand and connect with the character. It makes me want to learn more about gender fluidity. I loved Solo and Bec a ton and I really felt so happy that Riley's mom seemed more than anything to want to understand her child.

I'm 100% fascinated with everything in the LGBTQIA+ community. I don't know how to put it into words without sounding like a dork or causing offense, but I just want to soak up as much knowledge as possible. I grew up in a nondiverse small town in the midwest and even after moving to a big city, I feel like I haven't really been able to meet as many diverse people as I would like. So books, internet, tv, etc. is how I connect with diversity. I want to hear other people's stories!

The Carnivorous Carnival by Lemony Snicket - 4 stars (finished 3/20)
This one isn't one of my favorites in the series. It's okay. I feel like this one dragged on for a great deal of the story and then ends on a very exciting note.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

April TBR List + Upcoming Releases

In March, I was able to read 3 books (my goal is 4). The month started off a little slow because we had family in town and Nick had a long drill weekend, plus soccer has started...I'm still trying to dig my toes in and get settled back into a routine. And catch up on sleep - because Mason got sick for like 2 weeks and slept in bed with us and also woke up before 7 each morning...UGH. Motherhood can really put a damper on reading sometimes haha. I'm ahead by 1 book in my Goodreads goal and I would like to get back on track because up to this point, I was 2-3 books ahead! Here are my April reading goals:
  1. I need to read some of my Owlcrate books. I did read My Lady Jane last month and loved it. That list is now: Of Fire and Stars, Roseblood, Caraval, and Daughter of a Pirate King.
  2. I have other books sitting on my desk now and would like to read those as well: Dead in the Family, This Savage Song, and To All the Boys I've Loved Before.
  3. I would also love to finish at least ONE series this month. I need to start working on finishing some if I'm going to meet my goal of 10 this year.
Goodreads Challenge: 13/52 books
ABC Challenge: 9/26 books
Travel Gnome Challenge: 4/23 books
Series Challenge: 0/10 series
Movie Adaptation Challenge: 0/3 books
Netgalley Challenge: 2/25 books
Throwback Book Club: 10/12 books
Diversity Bingo 2017: 1/36 books
Overused YA Tropes Bingo 2017: 3/25 books