Tag Archives: readathon

May TBR (Lots of Readathons!) and Musings

For the past few months, with everything going on in the world, I’ve been finding it more helpful to mood-read rather than to set TBRs. Reading has been an incredible source of stress relief, particularly as it’s been a cold and rainy spring, and leaving my apartment to walk or hike in a non-crowded area isn’t always possible. And I’d like to continue to focus on reading as a source of distraction as we shift into May and uncertainty regarding when and if regulations will start to relax in different parts of the country.

For the past month or so, I’ve been working part-time; I work in the healthcare field, and where I work we’re still seeing emergent and urgent patients but not routine ones, so the majority of our staff has been furloughed temporarily. I’m lucky to still have a job, even if it’s only part-time, and eventually, once social distancing recommendations start to relax, things will become extremely busy as we build our patient schedules back up. For that reason, May is a bit nebulous, and I’m not really sure what to expect: I might be working relatively little the first two weeks and working overtime the next two, but I might not. I was thinking that having some structure and plans for my reading life might help counterbalance the uncertainty in my professional life; I could be wrong, and relapse into mood-reading again, but I think that some readathons sound great right about now.

So, what readathons are happening in May?

First of all, there’s the Medievalathon, hosted by Holly Hearts Books, which is structured similarly to the O.W.L.s readathon I participated in in April, where you read books that count toward specific tasks, and those tasks translate into imaginary attributes. With Medievalathon, you’re reading to outfit yourself with Middle Ages garb, weaponry, and an animal companion, as well as challenging yourself to read as many books as possible to attain a higher rank, up to Emperor/Empress. For me, this type of readathon works as sort of a fun aside to my reading; I rarely would pick up a book purposely to fulfill a prompt, but I enjoy seeing how books I’ve read fit into the categories as my reading progresses throughout the month.

Then there’s Tome Topple, hosted by Sam at Thoughts on Tomes,  one of my favorite readathons to participate in, where your goal is to read books over 500 pages long over the course of 2 weeks. I think, like with the last round of Tome Topple that I participated in in Feb, I’d like to aim to read one YA tome (Kingsbane by Claire Legrand) and one adult tome (Possession by A. S. Byatt), although it’s possible I may also try to read Aurora Burning by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman (in which I’d also probably re-read Aurora Rising, the first book in that series, which does not count for the readathon. We’ll see.)

Kingsbane (Empirium, #2)Possession (Definitely)

Aurora Rising (The Aurora Cycle #1)Aurora Burning (The Aurora Cycle #2) (maybe)

I tend to have good success with Tome Topple; it’s a great motivator for me to pick up some of my more giant books that might otherwise seem intimidating. Tome Topple lasts from May 9-22.

I’m also planning on participating in Bout of Books, a week-long readathon that always tends to boost my reading productivity. I won’t be setting a specific TBR for that one until closer to its start date.

Grab button for Bout of Books

The Bout of Books readathon is organized by Amanda Shofner and Kelly Rubidoux Apple. It’s a weeklong readathon that begins 12:01am Monday, May 11th and runs through Sunday, May 17th in YOUR time zone. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are daily challenges, Twitter chats, and exclusive Instagram challenges, but they’re all completely optional. For Bout of Books 28 information and updates, visit the Bout of Books blog. – From the Bout of Books team

And then I’m also setting a challenge for myself that’s not exactly a specific readathon: I want to try to read as many of my Book of the Month books as possible in May. It’s not because I’m necessarily overwhelmed at being behind on my picks, but just because there are a lot of them that I’m extremely excited about and am kicking myself for not having read yet. I’m definitely planning to read Normal People by Sally Rooney and Beach Read by Emily Henry, but I’ll probably try to pick up a few more as well, depending on how the month is going.

Normal PeopleBeach Read (Definitely)

Gods of Jade and ShadowQueenieTrick Mirror: Reflections on Self-DelusionWriters & Lovers (maybe)

 

I hope that everyone is doing okay, and staying safe, and I’m sending good thoughts to you all. Let me know in the comments if any of you are joining in on all of the May readathons.

Dewey’s 24-Hour Readathon Recap and Wrap-Up!

That’s a wrap on another round of Dewey’s, which came at a perfect time this year with some much-needed reading and bookish community. I wasn’t really sure how productive my readathon would be this year, because with everything going on in the world my ability to focus hasn’t been quite up to par, but I’m really glad that I decided to participate regardless. It wasn’t my most productive readathon, but I still really enjoyed challenging myself to read more than I normally would, and checking in on social media throughout the day to see what other readers were doing.

I woke up earlier than usual for the readathon (around 7:30 a.m.) so that I actually started reading right on time when the readathon started for me at 8 a.m. I read the entirety of a horror novella (The Murders of Molly Southbourne) in bed, then attempted to start a new book but was having trouble with indecisiveness. I read the first few pages of several books, then got started reading a YA Gothic fantasy book (Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan) but soon felt that I needed a bit of a break, so I  got up, had a bagel, and did some social media stuff, like checking the Dewey’s blog and posting my TBR and reading plans on my blog. Then, because for the first time in what feels like forever it was supposed to be 55-60 degrees and sunny out, I headed out for a long walk by the waterfront (staying as far away from others as possible, of course!).

Because it was earlier in the day, things weren’t as crowded at first, and it felt so good just to be out in the sun by the water. I took a few book photos, and then started noticing more and more people around, so I walked in a weird loop by some closed restaurants and banquet halls by the water and noticed that one restaurant had some tables and chairs out that were completely empty, since it was sort of off the normal walking trails. Since no one was around, I found it to be a perfect reading spot, and started reading Beach Read by Emily Henry, while unbeknownst to me becoming gradually more and more sunburned. I wandered a bit more through emptier parts of the city before heading back to my apartment in the late afternoon.

After snacking on some delicious tabbouleh that I had made the day before, I again started to feel indecisive about what I wanted to read. Even though I was liking both of the books I’d started earlier (Beach Read more so than Unspoken), I wasn’t quite in the mood for either one. Instead, I decided to make it my goal to finish The City We Became, a book I’d started earlier in April and wanted to finish before the end of the month, and I hunkered down with that book for several hours.

And then indecisiveness hit again after I finished The City We Became, and I picked up The Prisoner of Azkaban for a nice easy re-read (I’m currently in a book club via Zoom with several friends from high school, and we’re re-reading the Harry Potter books in order) only to discover that my extremely old copy was missing about 100 pages from the middle of the book. (I still have no idea where they went.) Slightly discouraged and getting tired, I ended up reading a bit more of Unspoken before I finally went to bed.

Closing Survey:

  1. How would you assess your reading overall?

During the readathon, I managed to finish reading 2 books:

The Murders of Molly Southbourne by Tade ThompsonThe City We Became by N.K. Jemisin

I started and finished The Murders of Molly Southborne by Tade Thompson (117 pages) and finished reading The City We Became by N. K. Jemisin, which I’d started reading earlier in the month (262 pages).

I also started reading 2 others:

Unspoken (The Lynburn Legacy, #1)Beach Read

Unspoken: The Lynburn Legacy Book 1 by Sarah Rees Brennan (70 pages) and Beach Read by Emily Henry (30 pages).

In total, I read 479 pages during the readathon, which is less than I normally tend to read, but still very respectable!

2. Did you have a strategy, and if so, did you stick to it?

My strategy was to get some sunshine and to read as much as I wanted, so I’d say that was pretty successful.

3. What was your favorite snack?

I had some delicious tabbouleh I’d made for snacking, and I also had a chai latte.

 

Did anyone else participate in Dewey’s this round?

Dewey’s 24-Hour Readathon: TBR and Opening Survey!

 

Normally I really look forward to Dewey’s 24-hour readathon as a great way to take a break from the busyness of work and obligations, but it feels a little bit different this time around. With social distancing still in effect, I’ve been reading much more than I normally do, and the concept of staying inside and reading all day doesn’t have quite the same allure that it normally does. I was weighing participating at all, but came to the conclusion that I still really do want to partake in Dewey’s this round, but that it might look a little different for me than it normally does: I’d love to spend a lot of time outside if possible; I want to focus on the social aspect of the readathon, encouraging and chatting with other readers; and my actual reading during the readathon may take a hit if I decide I need a bit more social interaction via Facetime.

My TBR for this round of Dewey’s is a little all over the place; I have no idea what I’m in the mood to read or how much reading I’ll be getting done, but these are some possibilities, including current reads I’d like to make progress on and new books to start:

The City We Became (Great Cities #1)Blink: The Power of Thinking Without ThinkingBeach ReadChosen Ones (The Chosen Ones, #1)

13 Ways of Looking at a Fat GirlThe Murders of Molly Southbourne (Molly Southbourne, #1)Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Harry Potter, #3)Aurora Rising (The Aurora Cycle #1)

 

Opening survey:

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today?

Buffalo, NY!

2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to?

I’m intrigued by Chosen Ones by Veronica Roth, and I’m hoping to possibly finish The City We Became by N. K. Jemisin.

3) Which snack are you most looking forward to?

Last night, I made tabbouleh in preparation for the readathon!

4) Tell us a little something about yourself!

I love the community feel of the readathon, and I think it’s something we could all use right now.

5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today?

Read outside! Normally I’m a bit of a hermit during the readathon, but I’m in desperate need of some sunshine.

Bout of Books Readathon Wrap-Up: Kicking off 2020 Reading!

 

So, that’s a wrap on my first readathon of 2020! I always really love participating in Bout of Books, the round in January in particular, as I do feel that it works well for reading motivation and inspiration, and this time was no different. Despite a fairly busy week, I managed to read a bunch and listen to a lot via audiobook as well, even if there’s always more I could have read. In addition to reading, this round of Bout of Books involved a fairly hectic work week, including one late night at the office that resulted in me reading only one page that day (hey, any reading is still good!); going to see Little Women, which I absolutely adored; doing three escape-room type experiences at 5 Wits; getting my hair done; and getting in some gym time. I’ve had busier weeks, but I did spend the majority of my weekend with friends and family, in addition to working a lot, so I didn’t read quite as much as I’d expected to (but I feel like that’s pretty standard for me for most readathons!), but I’m definitely happy with how it went overall.

 

Grab button for Bout of Books

 

Here are my Bout of Books stats!

Books finished: The A.I. Who Loved Me by Alyssa Cole (scifi romance audiobook), Life of the Party by Olivia Gatwood (poetry collection), Come Tumbling Down by Seanan McGuire (portal fantasy)

The A.I. Who Loved MeLife of the PartyCome Tumbling Down by Seanan McGuire

 

Books read, but not finished: Wolf Gone Wild by Juliette Cross (paranormal romance), Serpent & Dove by Shelby Mahurin (YA fantasy romance), Catch & Kill by Ronan Farrow (nonfiction), Followers by Megan Angelo (near-future literary science fiction)

Wolf Gone WildSerpent & Dove (Serpent & Dove, #1)Catch and Kill: Lies, Spies, and a Conspiracy to Protect PredatorsFollowers

 

Pages read: 147 pages of Life of the Party, 206 pages of Come Tumbling Down, 47 pages of Serpent & Dove, 30 pages of Followers, 28% of Wolf Gone Wild (eARC with no page numbers)

Audiobook time: 1.5 hours of The A.I. Who Loved Me,  7.5 hours of Catch and Kill

 

Did you participate in Bout of Books? How did your readathon go? Feel free to link me to your wrap-up!

January/Bout of Books TBR!

 

Since I’m still working on all of my end of 2019 posts (the stats in particular tend to take me a little while to put together), I’m going to go ahead and start looking ahead to my 2020 reading. And, of course, the best way to kick off a reading year is with a fun, low-pressure readathon, in this case Bout of Books, which takes place from January 6th to the 12th. I have a lot of books I’m hoping to pick up in January, including several ARCs, and I’d also love to start the year strong with a 5-star read, so let’s take a look at what I have on my TBR:

 

Grab button for Bout of Books

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda Shofner and Kelly Rubidoux Apple. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 6th and runs through Sunday, January 12th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, Twitter chats, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 27 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. – From the Bout of Books team

 

FollowersIn the Dream House: A MemoirCome Tumbling Down (Wayward Children, #5)Life of the Party

In terms of physical books, I have one upcoming ARC left from BookExpo (Followers by Megan Angelo) which comes out on January 14th and deals with the present and future implications of social media and celebrity culture; I’m also hoping to pick up a 2020 new release (Come Tumbling Down by Seanan McGuire, the 5th book in the portal fantasy Wayward Children series) that comes out on the 7th. I’m also thinking that I’d like to pick up one of my 5-star predictions for the year, In the Dream House by Carmen Maria Machado, a memoir by the author of past favorite Her Body and Other Parties, and a poetry collection I’ve been hearing some buzz about, Life of the Party, by a new-to-me author, Olivia Gatwood.

Wolf Gone WildThe Stars We Steal

And then I also have two eARCs of upcoming releases via NetGalley: Wolf Gone Wild by Juliette Cross, a paranormal romance featuring witches and werewolves, and The Stars We Steal by Alexa Donne, a YA scifi romance that’s described as Jane Austen’s Persuasion meets The Bachelor.

I’m not sure what I’m going to pick up during Bout of Books versus the rest of the month, but I’m hoping to start 2020 with some great reads. Are any of these on your TBR? If anyone else is participating in Bout of Books, feel free to leave a link to your TBR in the comments, I’d love to see what you’re all reading!

Bout of Books TBR!

Grab button for Bout of BooksThe Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda Shofner and Kelly Rubidoux Apple. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, May 13th and runs through Sunday, May 19th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, Twitter chats, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 25 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. – From the Bout of Books team

 

I’m reading slumping again, so you know what that means–it’s time for a readathon!

There’s been a lot going on in my non-bookish life, and sometimes stress will very much start to negatively impact my reading life. Conversely, I know that reading is one of the things that helps decrease my stress levels, so sometimes when I’m stressed the best thing to do is actually to just double down and force myself to read more than I normally would. (This happens with writing, too. More on that later.)

I even set a TBR for May hoping that this would help me focus, but it’s not, partially because two of the three books on that TBR I’m kinda hating and considering DNF-ing. So I think that for now I really need to switch gears for a bit and use Bout of Books, a readathon I’m a huge fan of and have participated in many times in the past, as a way to motivate me to actually make some good things happen reading-wise. I’ll be putting the books I’m not liking on hold and instead picking up some highly anticipated 2019 releases, ARCs, and short stories. Let’s do this!

So, here’s what I’m going to focus on reading for Bout of Books:

Aurora Rising (The Aurora Cycle, #1)Mouthful of BirdsKingdom of Exiles (The Beast Charmer, #1)

Ebooks: Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff (which I’m currently reading and really loving, since it’s a little Six of Crows-in-space-esque), Kingdom of Exiles by Maxym M. Maritneau (eARC, thank you so much to Avon Books Casa, which comes out in June).

Physical books: Mouthful of Birds by Samanta Schweblin (short story collection by an author whose previous book I loved, also a 2019 new release), and possibly either a physical ARC (The Fall by Tracy Townsend or The Binding by Bridget Collins) or The Pisces by Melissa Broder.

Audiobooks: TBD, since I can’t seem to focus on audiobooks lately, but I’m going to ask for some recs in an instagram story.

 

Are any of you participating in Bout of Books? What are your thoughts on getting through a reading slump? Let me know!

Dewey’s 24-Hour Readathon Recap

That’s a wrap on another round of Dewey’s 24-hour readathon! I had what was possibly my least productive readthon ever this month (including not posting my usual TBR and mid-readathon check-in blog posts), but was totally fine with that since I’d spent the entire prior week with the flu and hadn’t read anything at all during the month of April before the readathon started. I was glad that Dewey’s provided a good excuse to get my reading back into gear, and as always I loved the feeling of joining a community of readers engaged in bookishness for a full day. If you’re not familiar, Dewey’s is a day-long readathon where people around the world join in for a full day (or as much free time as they can spare) dedicated to reading and talking books. It’s a lot of fun, and if you’ve never participated, I highly recommend giving it a try.

Here’s my closing survey for the readathon:

  1. What hour was most daunting?

I’m not sure I’d call any hour daunting, but I did sleep in and go to bed earlier than I normally would during a readathon since I wasn’t feeling amazing after having the flu. I did enter into a bit of a what-to-read-next crisis after finishing my first book of the readathon, but I dealt with that by switching to an audiobook.

2. Tell us ALLLLL the books you read!

The Rules and Regulations for Mediating Myths & Magic by F.T. LukensRed, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuistonA Princess in Theory (Reluctant Royals, #1)Lagoon

I started and finished one book (The Rules and Regulations for Mediating Myths and Magic by F.T. Lukens), finished the last 10% of an eARC (Red, White, and Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston), and read the first 1/3 of two books (A Princess in Theory by Alyssa Cole on audiobook and Lagoon by Nnedi Okorafor).

3. What was your favorite snack?

I was drinking a Trader Joe’s matcha latte while reading in the afternoon, and it was the perfect bookish beverage.

4. What was your favorite facet of the day?

Finally finishing a book this month felt great, as did chillaxing and mood-reading after a stressful and flu-filled week.

 

Did any of you participate in the readathon?