Category Archives: readathon

Can’t Wait for the Bout of Books Readathon!

Bout of Books

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, May 9th and runs through Sunday, May 15th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 16 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. – From the Bout of Books team

Dewey’s 24-hour Readathon has just ended, and although it was fantastic, I can’t help but wish that it was longer…and then I remembered that Bout of Books starts in 2 weeks!

I participated in Bout of Books for the first time in January (Here’s my wrap-up post: https://beachesandbooks.wordpress.com/2016/01/12/bout-of-books-wrap-up/) and loved it! The week-long challenge gave me plenty of time to read, but still left flexibility for reading on a busy schedule. The extra time also gave me more of an opportunity to participate in mini-challenges, something I never seem to have the time or inclination for during Dewey’s. Last time during Bout of Books, I finished 5 books and started 2, and, most importantly, felt completely immersed in my reading each night as a fantastic break.

I’ve already started brainstorming my TBR list, and plan to try to beat my previous record by reading 6 books this time. If possible, I’d like to read as much as possible from my physical TBR, although I always end up too tempted by the library during reading challenges. I can always dream!

Is anyone else participating in Bout of Books??

Dewey’s Readathon Wrap-Up!

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The Readathon is over! I had an amazing time while I was Readathoning, even though work got in the way a lot more than I had wanted it to 😦

The good: I felt so relaxed settling down to read and focusing on a few short books that I’ve been eyeing for awhile now. I alternated reading with exploring different blogs and checking out gorgeous Instagram posts, and it was the perfect combination. I also treated myself to some Thai food and hot chocolate (not at the same time). I posted a lot on Instagram and managed to put up a few progress updates on this blog as well. It’s hard to describe how peaceful the Readathon made me feel; it gives me a solid excuse to totally abandon the rest of the world for books for a little while.

The bad: I had to work the morning of the Readathon, which I knew about (and attempted to escape from) ahead of time, and I was also on call all weekend. What I didn’t expect was to field several calls during the day and to get called back into work around midnight, which took up a good two hours of reading time and totally threw me off my game. I was going strong with a great book when I got the call, and when I got back home I was too distracted to fully commit to Readathoning the way I had been doing earlier. I was also really exhausted because I only got about 2 hours of sleep before. I was having a harder time focusing on books than I anticipated because I was so sleepy and read a lot less than I thought I would. So although the Readathon in general was awesome, it was bad timing for me this year.

Here’s my post-Readathon survey!

Which hour was most daunting for you?

1:30 a.m. to 2:30 a.m. I ended up getting called into work late last night, and when I got back I had totally lost my reading focus–I was in the middle of A History of Glitter and Blood when I left and had trouble getting back into the zone when I got back. I ended up needing to switch to my audiobook.

Could you list a few high-interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year?

I think faster-paced, absorbing books are best for the Readathon. Short books work well too. Here are some that I didn’t use for the Readathon but wish that I had:

Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire, Nimona by Noelle Stevenson, Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo, anything by Ilona Andrews, Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi, The Rook by Daniel O’Malley, Texts from Jane Eyre by Mallory Ortberg (this would be literally perfect, maybe I’ll reread it for next Readathon! It’s a short read and hilarious)

Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next season?

No! I thought it was fantastic. Everyone was so engaged with reading and talking books.

What do you think worked really well in this year’s Read-a-thon?

All of it?

How many books did you read?

I finished 3 short books/graphic novels, read a decent chunk of a YA novel, and listened to about 3 hours of my audiobook.

What were the names of the books you read?

Finished:

Kindred Spirits by Rainbow Rowell

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Through the Woods by Emily Caroll

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Fables, Volume 1: Legends in Exile by Bill Willingham

Read part of:

A History of Glitter and Blood by Hannah Moskowitz

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Yes, Chef by Marcus Samuelsson

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Which book did you enjoy most?

I loved Kindred Spirits–it was a perfect Readathon read. Quick, very cute, and nerdy in a great way. I also am getting really drawn into the world of A History of Glitter and Blood. It’s YA but definitely skews older–it deals heavily with teen prostitution and dismemberment is another key theme. It’s a very dark story about fairies told in an atypical way.

Which did you enjoy least?

Fables. Unfortunately, it just didn’t work that well for me. I love anything fairytale-related, but it just didn’t feel original enough to me. I’m not in love with detective-type formats in general; it’s just not my genre.

How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time?

I’m already getting excited for the next Readathon on October 22nd!!! For next time, I’m planning on taking off work for sure instead of trying to switch shifts so that I don’t run into the issues I had this time around. I might try to incorporate a spooky/horror theme for the season.

So, another awesome Readathon ends! Now I’m getting pumped for Bout of Books, a week-long reading challenge that lasts from May 9-15. If you’re in the middle of a Readathon hangover, you might want to check it out (http://boutofbooks.blogspot.com/).

 

How did everyone else’s Readathons go? I can’t wait to check out all of your blog posts!

Dewey’s 24-Hour Readathon: Halfway Update

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Halfway through the Readathon! Although it doesn’t really feel that way, since I started so late. I feel like Dewey’s came at a great time this year, and I love the feeling of letting everything fall away for a certain number of hours and just focusing on bookishness.

Here are my responses to the mid-readathon survey!

1. What are you reading right now?

I’m currently reading A History of Glitter and Blood by Hannah Moskowitz, which is turning out to be a very dark, fairy-focused YA novel set before/during/after a violent conflict between fairies, gnomes, and another group of beings called “tightropers.” It’s written in an interesting way–the “author” keeps jumping in and commenting on how badly they’re telling the story in between the third person narration, and there are excerpts from other books made to look like they’ve been taped in. I really like the style and dark tone. Don’t let the sparkles fool you on this one.

A History of Glitter and Blood
2. How many books have you read so far?

I’ve finished 3 so far! All were shorter books, which I think I needed due to how sleepy I am. But I’ve also listened to about 1.5 hours of my audiobook and read the first few chapters of A History of Glitter and Blood. Here’s what I’ve read:

Kindred Spirits

Through the Woods

Fables, Vol. 1: Legends in Exile
3. What book are you most looking forward to for the second half of the Read-a-thon?

I’m looking forward to getting deeper into A History of Glitter and Blood, which I’d ideally like to finish during the Readathon. I’m also planning on reading some of Mr. Splitfoot, which I’m about 50 pages into but haven’t read any of during the Readathon so far. I may also pick up Volume 2 of Fables to switch it up. And definitely more audiobooking with Yes, Chef.
4. Have you had many interruptions? How did you deal with those?

I went into the Readathon knowing that I’d be missing out on the first 5-6 hours due to work and that I would probably get interruptions since I’m on call tonight, so I guess I dealt with them by being prepared and planning on just enjoying the time that I do have to participate! It’s still been a huge chunk of uninterrupted reading time for me and it’s been awesome.
5. What surprises you most about the Read-a-thon, so far?

I was planning on devoting most of my time to full-length books, but it’s turned out that I’ve read one short novella and 2 graphic novels. But I also feel like that’s helped me keep my momentum going. Also, I haven’t eaten any of my Readathon snacks! (Instead I ate lots of Thai food. No regrets there).

 

How has everyone’s Readathon been going???

Dewey’s Readathon Update #1: Hour 8

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Hour: 8

Books finished: 2

Time spent reading: 3 hours (I was at work for 5 of the hours!)

So far, the Readathon is off to a great start, despite some setbacks! Namely, my insomniac tendencies decided to go crazy last night, and I only got a few hours’ sleep before I had to go to work this morning. However, I got a full hour of audiobook time in during my commute (Yes, Chef is heating up–it’s now the early ’90’s and Marcus Samuelsson is in New York City for the first time), grabbed some Thai food on the way home, and started hardcore Readathoning pretty much immediately. Now my main fear is falling asleep. I don’t want to waste valuable Readathon time napping!

 

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The first book I finished for the Readathon was Kindred Spirits by Rainbow Rowell (pictured here with the tiniest, cutest plant in the world that I found at Trader Joe’s). It was sweet and Rainbow Rowell-ish, and made me want to watch the new Star Wars movie for the third time. Not today, though! Today is devoted to the Readathon.

Through the Woods

And I just finished my second book of the Readathon, a graphic novel called Through the Woods by Emily Caroll. I went in with low expectations but ended up extremely impressed by the gorgeous artwork and old-fashioned vibe of the five horror stories. I would not, however, call this a scary book. Just a very pretty and interesting one.

 

How is everyone’s Readathon going so far???

Dewey’s Readathon Goals and Game Plan

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So I already posted my TBR post for Dewey’s Readathon this Saturday (here: https://beachesandbooks.wordpress.com/2016/04/20/deweys-24-hour-readathon-tbr/), but I also wanted a space to lay out my Readathon game plan. Much like my TBR lists, my bookish game plans tend to fall apart, but it doesn’t mean it’s not fun to make them!

This is only my second Dewey’s Readathon, but I had so much fun with the first one I joined in October. It’s when I really got into the zone with Bookstagram and my book blog, and helped me dive into the bookish community and see what a friendly and wonderful place it is. It also made me immediately resolve to make the Readathon a bookish tradition for myself!

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Game Plan:

My Readathon start time is 8 a.m., which would normally work out quite well, but I actually have to work from about 8:30 until around 2 (I hope! There’s a chance I might need to stay later) so I have to postpone the start of my physical book-reading until the afternoon. I’m planning on audiobooking during my commute to and from work, which should give me around an hour of audiobook time before I can tackle the rest of my TBR. I’m bummed that I have to work–I did try to switch shifts, but unfortunately I got stuck. So I’m trying to make the most of it! It’s a good thing I’m super into my audiobook, because it’s been making my commute better all week. I’m about 1/3 of the way through Yes, Chef by Marcus Samuelsson, and I highly recommend it so far!

Yes, Chef

 

The second I get home, I’m planning on diving into full-on Readathon mode and not surrendering until I get into the Sunday a.m. hours. (Although I am also on call for work, so there is a chance I may have to go back for a bit, in which case more audiobook time!) I don’t plan on staying awake the entire 24 hours, because I am already an insomniac and can’t afford to have my sleep schedule thrown off anymore than it already is, but I think I’ll try to make it until 2 or 3 a.m. I know, it’s not hardcore, but it’s ambitious enough for me!

I feel like varying reading locations will be key to help prevent me from napping and missing reading time, so I’m going to be switching it up between my couch, my floor, and my roof–it’s supposed to be fairly nice out on Saturday, so some outside reading time might be nice!

Food-wise, I’m excited about the green tea chai latte mix I picked up at Trader Joe’s, because there’s nothing like reading with a delicious hot drink (even if it’s nice outside, it lets you pretend you’re snowed in with a book). I’m also thinking about ordering Thai food so I don’t have to cook anything, and also because I’m obsessed with Thai food.

Goals:

Finish 3 books. This is totally doable, considering the shortness of the books I picked out!

Don’t nap. I’m afraid I’m going to fall asleep accidentally, and that is not allowed to happen! I can sleep when I’m done Readathoning but not before.

And that’s pretty much it! I’m planning on Instagramming a lot (@beachesnbooks, if you’re on Instagram!), blogging a lot, reading a lot of other blog posts, and just enjoying the fact that some amazing people worked hard to create and promote such an awesome event.

Happy Readathon to everyone participating tomorrow!

 

 

Dewey’s 24-Hour Readathon TBR!

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I am so, so excited for the Readathon on Saturday! I hope everyone is having fun coming up with their TBR stacks; I know I’ve been agonizing over it for awhile, even though I am notorious for abandoning TBR plans. My main issue in coming up with this one is that I keep getting impatient and reading books that sound too good to wait for (first it was Nimona, then Every Heart a Doorway; now I’m officially cutting myself off). But I finally got a good stack together, and I’m really excited to jump in this weekend. Ranked in the order of most to least likely to read, here is my official readathon TBR:

 

Kindred SpiritsThrough the WoodsA Court of Thorns and Roses (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #1)Fables, Vol. 1: Legends in Exile

A History of Glitter and BloodMr. SplitfootYes, ChefUnaccustomed Earth

 

Kindred Spirits by Rainbow Rowell – this is a very short book (novella? short story? I’m not sure what you’d technically call it) that bookstagrammer @thewayfaringbookworm was nice enough to send me an extra copy of after she was sent extras by the publisher (thank you sooo much!!!). I’ve tried not to read too much about it because it’s so short and I don’t want to spoil the reading experience, but I know it’s about Star Wars and that there’s a romance element. It sounds very cute and I’m looking forward to kicking off the Readathon with this one.

Through the Woods by Emily Carroll – reading a graphic novel worked out well for me in last year’s Readathon, and this one consists of five horror short stories. I was going to read Nimona for my graphic novel, but, um, I finished it already (oops) (no regrets, it was awesome).

Yes, Chef by Marcus Samuelsson – this is my audiobook of choice for the Readathon. I was listening to Jackaby, but it got boring (sadface) and I decided to DNF. Then I tried to get the audiobook of Notorious RBG from my library, but there’s a waiting list (sadface again), so Yes, Chef it is! I don’t know if I’ve talked about this on this blog before, but I’m a big fan of Top Chef and the Food Network (I love having the Food Network on low volume in the background while I read; I find it relaxing) and Marcus Samuelsson is one of my favorite celebrity chefs. He always comes across as very intelligent and well-spoken, and I’m glad that he narrates his own book because he has a fantastic voice. Also, this will count as my “food memoir” for the Book Riot Read Harder Challenge.

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas (reread) – I read this and really enjoyed it last year, particularly the last section of the book when Feyre is at the evil queen’s court. I was thinking that I’d like to reread some parts of it before the sequel, A Court of Mist and Fury, comes out in early May. I am definitely not going to reread the entire book.

A History of Glitter and Blood by Hannah Moskowitz – this is the book I know the least about, and I’m trying to keep it that way. I’ve read several incredibly glowing reviews that all seem to touch on how weird it is, and saw a bunch of one-star reviews on Goodreads given for the same reason. Well, I like weird. And I like stories about the Fae. So I’m crossing my fingers that this will be one that I’ll like and not DNF after a few chapters, like I do with a lot of YA.

Mr. Splitfoot by Samantha Hunt – I’ve still barely started this book, and I still think I’m really going to enjoy it; I just haven’t yet been in the mood to delve deep into it. That might happen this week; in an ideal world, I could get absorbed in this book before the Readathon starts and use it as a book to finish up or read a bit of to add some more serious reading in with all of my YA and graphic novels.

Fables, Vol. 1: Legends in Exile by Bill Willingham – I decided I should have a backup graphic novel in case I get into a graphic novelish mood, since they are short and I could easily breeze through two in a couple of hours. I love anything fairytale retelling-related, and I’ve heard really great things about this series. And hey, if I like it, I could continue with the series during Bout of Books in May!

Unaccustomed Earth by Jhumpa Lahiri – I wanted a book of short stories as an option for the Readathon, but was hesitant to start yet another book because I seem to have caught some sort of book-starting disease and have about five going already right now. I actually started reading this book three or four years ago, and got so emotionally invested in one of the stories that I had to stop reading halfway through and put in on pause. I wasn’t expecting that pause to last years, but it has, and this book has been on my bedside table that entire time. I think short stories are a good way to add some variety to the Readathon, and I am ready to actually finish this book.

 

Also, if I hit a slump and nothing is working for me, I could always try one of these (although I doubt it! I feel like my list is pretty darn good) (plus I think I’m going to be saving these for Bout of Books):

The Good GirlCity of Dark Magic (City of Dark Magic, #1)Death My Own WayLeo@Fergusrules.Com: A Novel

 

 

So who will be participating in the Readathon on Saturday? What are you all reading? I can’t wait to find out!

Feel free to post a link to your Readathon TBR posts in the comments, I’d love to check them out!!

 

April TBR and Getting Psyched for Dewey’s Readathon!

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It’s my favorite part of the month: the part where I make a massive TBR list that I then immediately start to deviate from. I ranked these in order of most likely to actually read this month to least likely.

There are a couple of factors that went into my TBR decisions this month: I need to bounce back from my most recent book I thought I’d love that was just okay (Trigger Warning by Neil Gaiman) and, more excitingly, I need to plan for Dewey’s 24-hour readathon on April 23rd!!!

I participated in the most recent Dewey’s readathon in October, and had an amazing time reading straight through Carry On by Rainbow Rowell in one day. I read a graphic novel too! It’s a fun and interactive celebration of reading, and I’m pumped to participate again this month. Unfortunately, I have to work the morning of the Readathon, but am planning on audiobooking to and from work and then getting down to hardcore reading/blogging as soon as I get home. I’ll be posting a more specific pre-Readathon game plan later in the month 🙂

So, here’s what I’m looking to read during April:

 

Jackaby (Jackaby, #1)Jackaby (Jackaby, #1)Jackaby (Jackaby, #1)

Jackaby by William Ritter – I already started listening to this audiobook, and it’s totally working for me. Supernatural Sherlock Homes in late 1800’s New England, with a female protagonist I really like in the Watsonish role.

Marked in Flesh (The Others, #4)Marked in Flesh (The Others, #4)Marked in Flesh (The Others, #4)

Marked in Flesh by Anne Bishop – this is on a 7-day library loan, so I actually need to read it really quickly. It’s not that I can’t read a book in a week, but this series is a slower type of read that I prefer to take my time with, so this might be tricky.

NimonaNimonaNimona

Nimona by Noelle Stevenson – I’ve been hearing from so many bloggers and reviewers that this is a must-read, and I’m excited to check it out.

The Yellow WallpaperThe Yellow WallpaperThe Yellow Wallpaper

The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman – technically a short story I have on e-book. So far I have read exactly zero classics in 2016, so I should get on this.

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1Q84 by Haruki Murakami – This book sounds absolutely amazing. I definitely will be starting it this month, but it is very, very long, so I doubt I’ll be able to finish it this month as well.

Through the WoodsThrough the WoodsThrough the Woods

Through the Woods by Emily Carroll – another graphic novel, this one is supposed to be quite spooky. I read a really positive review on Goodreads from Patrick Rothfuss that made me check this out from the library.

Every Heart a DoorwayEvery Heart a DoorwayEvery Heart a Doorway

Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire – I just requested this short novel from the library. It’s a new release about children who return to the real world after getting lost in fantasy stories. It may be a good option for Dewey’s since it’s fairly short and has been getting amazing reviews on Goodreads.

Appetites: Why Women WantAppetites: Why Women WantAppetites: Why Women Want

Appetites by Caroline Knapp – This book has been sitting on my TBR pile mocking me since college.

Mr. SplitfootMr. SplitfootMr. Splitfoot

Mr. Splitfoot by Samantha Hunt – I do really, really want to read this, but I’m not sure if I’ll be able to fit it in this month. Never say never!

 

I’d love to hear what everyone is planning on reading this month! What’s on your TBR lists? Anyone else participating in the Readathon?