Tag Archives: Currently Reading

Bout of Books Updates: Days 4, 5, and 6

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I may not be reading quite as many books as predicted during this Bout of Books, but the important thing is that I’m absolutely loving all of the books I’ve been reading. And that’s rare for me, because I’m picky! In the last few days, I’ve finished the audiobook I was listening to, Notorious RBG by Irin Carmon and Shana Khnizhnik, and was both inspired and blown away by the life of the Supreme Court justice. I started a new audiobook, Not That Kind of Girl by Lena Dunham (apparently nonfiction has really been working for me in audiobooks!) and went in with low expectations which were totally exceeded. I do watch Girls, but find it inconsistent, with some episodes that are amazing and seem to be making such great insights into twenty-something life, and other episodes that are really unenjoyable.I also thought that Lena Dunham was way too young to be writing a memoir. But Lena’s memoir is hilarious and self-aware, and I love that she reads it herself.

My Brilliant Friend (The Neapolitan Novels, #1)

My main physical book is still My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante, and it is still so good and immersive. I’ve been wanting to read it slowly and savor it, even though there are still 3 other books in the series; at the same time I can’t wait to see where the story goes next. I’ve also started obnoxiously promoting this book to everyone I talk to and insisting that they read it immediately.

So here’s my reading breakdown: (I’ve never really counted the time/pages of reading before, it’s interesting to see what I can get done in a week)

Day 4:

Books finished: Notorious RBG

Books started: Not That Kind of Girl

Pages read: 27 pages of My Brilliant Friend

Audiobook time: 45 minutes of Notorious RBG and 70 minutes of Not That Kind of Girl

Day 5:

Pages read: 35 pages of My Brilliant Friend

Audiobook time: 3 hours of Not That Kind of Girl

Day 6:

Audiobook time: 1 hour of Not That Kind of Girl

Mini-Challenge: Freaky Bout of Books for Friday the 13th

 

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As you can see, the bunnies are having a great time reading a lot of vampire literature. I hope everyone is enjoying their Bout of Books!

Bout of Books Day 3 Updates & Mini-Challenge

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I had a really wonderful Day 3 of Bout of Books – Wednesday is my day off from work, so I was able to wake up semi-late and read in bed for awhile. After working out and getting some things done around my apartment, I walked down to the river near where I live and read My Brilliant Friend while enjoying the sunshine. I can’t believe it was 75 degrees out today! Then I did even more reading this evening. I have to say that I am LOVING My Brilliant Friend. I really wish I hadn’t resisted reading it for so long; I was clearly being silly about not reading it and should have looked into it sooner. But at least I’m reading it now and discovering its insanely well-crafted storytelling (and I caved and bought book 2 in the quartet, The Story of a New Name, so that I can jump in once I’ve finished book 1). I am also very gradually savoring A Court of Mist and Fury; I don’t want to finish it too fast and have it be over with, as it’s a perfect guilty pleasure read.

 

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Day 3 Updates:

Books finished: 0

Books started: 0

Pages read:

  • 101 pages of My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante
  • 56 pages of A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas

Audiobook time: 45 minutes of Notorious RBG

Mini-Challenge: 5 Favorites. I chose to display my five favorite science fiction books (and now I feel like I should be doing more of this! Stay tuned for my top 5 fantasy books, etc).

 

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I hope everyone is having an awesome Bout of Books! For more info, you can check out the site here: http://boutofbooks.blogspot.com/

WWW Wednesday: Reading Updates

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I was in the mood to post a bookish update (I have a lot of bookish thoughts right now!), so here is my first WWW Wednesday, hosted by https://samannelizabeth.wordpress.com/.

WWW Wednesday is a meme where you answer the 3 W’s (What are you currently reading, What did you recently finish reading, and What do you think you’ll read next), so here I go:

What are you currently reading?

My Brilliant Friend (The Neapolitan Novels, #1)

OK, so this takes some explaining. I started  hearing about Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan novels a year or so ago, and the hype has been continuously building since then. However, until very recently, I was, for various reasons, fairly committed to never reading any of them. Why? It’s hard to explain. The first reason is that I figured any series with this ridiculous amount of hype must not be able to live up to it, and although I sometimes do like to read whatever the “it” book currently is, a lot of the time I’m really reluctant to do so. Maybe it’s a bookish hipster thing? Am I trying to not be too mainstream? But I only do this selectively, so I don’t think that’s entirely it.

The other reason I’ve hesitated to reach for the Ferrante novels, despite how amazing they’re supposed to be, is that I just didn’t think I’d be interested in them. I hate to say this, but realistic fiction typically just isn’t my genre. I don’t hate all realistic fiction, but it takes a really, really good realistic fiction book to hook me, since what attracts me to books tends to be their uniqueness and realistic fiction, by definition, is less “out there” than various genre fiction. My go-to genres have always been science fiction and fantasy, in all their iterations (magical realism, dystopian fiction, speculative fiction, etc) and, although I know that this is not always the case, those genres have always tended to present themselves as the most creative and unique books. I definitely need to open my mind back up to more realistic fiction, but lately, I’ve been getting worse and worse about this; it’s rare for me to read anything non-SFF/F, and the Ferrante novels just didn’t fit my non-realistic vibe.

At a certain point, however, I decided that I just had to know what these books were like. Spurred by discovering a forgotten Barnes and Noble gift card with $17 left on it, I hit the bookstore the other day and picked up My Brilliant Friend. And OH MY GOD.

To be clear, I’ve just started this book, but the thing is that I typically form opinions on books very quickly. I can usually tell from the first page if I’m going to vibe with the book, and after reading the first paragraph of My Brilliant Friend, I am totally on board. I don’t want to talk too much about it (mainly because I’m only on page 40), but the writing is immersive, detailed, and I’ve been completely sucked in. I can’t wait to keep reading, and I hope this feeling lasts throughout the whole book. I mean, I could always be wrong and start disliking it, but so far I’m extremely impressed.
What did you recently finish reading?

Mr. Splitfoot

 

I stayed up until 2 a.m. finishing Mr. Splitfoot the other night because there was no way I could physically abandon the story at that point. I ended up LOVING this book and gave it 4.5 stars. I loved the structure of the book and how it switched between two timelines that came crashing together at the end. Highly, highly recommended for fans of weird fiction. Also, it’s my first completed book for #SmashYourStack!
What do you think you’ll read next?

A Court of Mist and Fury (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #2)

 

I pre-ordered A Court of Mist and Fury, which turned out to be a bad move–the release date was yesterday but I won’t get it in the mail until Friday. I should have just picked up a copy on the release date! Now I know for next time to skip the pre-ordering. I may just wait until Bout of Books to start it, since I’m deep in Ferrante mode anyways and want to save this one til I can fully appreciate it.

 

What is everyone reading right now??

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week. This meme started with J Kaye’s Blog  and then was taken up by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn at the Book Date

 

To summarize: my reading week rocked!

My reading this week made me so happy–I read two absolutely fantastic books this week! I am now going to start recommending them all over the place.

Books I finished this week:

 

Wide Sargasso Sea

Every Heart a Doorway

 

Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys: the language of this book is lyrical, and not a single word is wasted. I kept rereading sentences because of how beautiful the writing was, and it took me much longer to read this than I thought it would because I wanted to savor it. It’s a feminist reinterpretation of the “madwoman in the attic” aspect of Jane Eyre, and it discusses racism and sexism, both insidious and overt, through the story of Antoinette Cosway, daughter of Jamaican slave owners, who is later sold into marriage with a calculating Englishman. The story is incredibly sad and disturbing, but it feels like a very necessary discussion of the rarely explored aspects of classic literature.

Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire: I become very easily hooked by any type of exploration of the fantasy/fairy tale genre, and this book was exactly what I wanted to read. The children in this book have all been involved in portal fantasy scenarios (where they have left the real world through magical doorways and emerged into their own fantasylands) but then, for various reasons, have returned (typically, they’ve been forced to return) to reality. I absolutely loved the hints at the different worlds the children went to, and I found the two main characters, Nancy and Kade, to be both intriguing and relatable. I really wish we’d gotten flashbacks to their times in their respective fantastical worlds, though. The hints were not enough! To be honest, I’d have read a much longer book on all of this and loved it, but the novella length did work well as it is.

But I still wish it was longer.

 

Reading now:

Reflections (Indexing, #2)Mr. SplitfootYes, Chef

I bought the ebook of the second installment in Seanan McGuire’s Indexing series, which is about secret government agents dealing with out-of-control and deadly fairy tales snaring unsuspecting civilians. I was so pleasantly surprised by the first book (which is just called Indexing, and I highly recommend it) and I like this one so far as well, although it isn’t quite as surprising since a lot of the fun of the worldbuilding was already accomplished previously.

Sadly, I DNF’d Jackaby, the audiobook I was listening to for the past few weeks (yet another abandoned audiobook for me, oh well). Then today I started listening to Yes, Chef, which is a memoir by celebrity chef Marcus Samuelsson. So far I love it.

And still at the beginning of Mr. Splitfoot!

 

Looking forward to:

Dewey’s 24-Hour Readathon on Saturday! This week I’ll be posting about my TBR stack and Readathon plans. I can’t wait to hear about everyone else’s Readathoning as well.

 

What are you all reading this week?

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week. This meme started with J Kaye’s Blog  and then was taken up by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn at the Book Date

 

It’s Monday, and I’m actually doing pretty decent on my April TBR list! Here’s what I managed to finish this week:

Nimona by Noelle StevensonMarked in Flesh by Anne BishopThe Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

Shockingly, I was able to finish reading Marked in Flesh in time to return it to the library…only three days overdue :-/ But it could have been a lot worse!

I finally got around to reading The Yellow Wallpaper, which is actually a short story, although I downloaded it as a free standalone ebook, so…apparently I’m counting it as a book?

And…Nimona!!! I’ll add a longer review later, but I liked this so much more than I thought I was going to. I had actually intended on saving it for Dewey’s 24-hour Readathon later this month, but I got too impatient and went ahead and read it.

 

Right now, I’m in the middle of three books:

Wide Sargasso SeaMr. SplitfootJackaby (Jackaby, #1)

 

Wide Sargasso Sea is the one I’m most focused on right now, and I have to say that the writing is absolutely incredible. Every sentence is so thoughtfully constructed and the language is dense and evocative. It’s a short book but I’m reading it very slowly due to its density and overall amazingness.

I just BARELY started Mr. Splitfoot, but I’m able to tell pretty quickly whether or not I’m clicking with a book. (Reading is a lot like dating in that way.) And I am absolutely hitting it off with this book so far. I can’t wait to get more invested in this book, but that will have to wait until I finish Wide Sargasso Sea, which is sort of consuming my reading thoughts at the moment.

 

Speaking of consuming my reading thoughts, I’ve been obsessing (a lot) about my reading game plan for Dewey’s Readathon. I have way too many book ideas for such a short period of time, but I’m rationalizing it because Bout of Books is coming up in May, and anything I don’t read for Dewey’s can just roll over into that readathon instead 🙂

 

 

What is everyone reading this Monday??

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

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Right now I’m in the middle (almost the exact middle) of Trigger Warning by Neil Gaiman. This will be the 3rd book of short stories I’ve read by this author, and so far it’s not living up to my expectations. I’m actually really sad about this–I’m a huge Neil Gaiman fan, and I loved the majority of the stories in both Fragile Things and Smoke and Mirrors, but for some reason I’m just not connecting with any of the stories in this collection yet. I still loved his thoughtful introduction and context for each of the stories that he tells, but the stories themselves so far are underwhelming. I really want to finish this before the end of the #Weirdathon, though, so I’m going to power through and hope that the stories get better. I know there’s an American Gods novella at the end, so I’ll have that to look forward to.

 

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This week I also DNF’d the audiobook version of The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly. This had nothing to do with the awesomeness of the story, and everything to do with the fact that I am unable to listen well enough to certain audiobooks to feel like I’m really getting everything out of them. I don’t like that I can’t reread sentences on audiobooks without jumping back aways (I listen to audiobooks on CDs) and I have trouble paying close attention to deeper meanings than I do when I read normally. I really want to read this in a physical book, though–I love the story concept so far.

 

What is everyone reading this week?