BoB 26 Round Up Day 1

Yesterday was actually the 2nd day of Bout of Books, but my official 1st day. I decided the best way for me to tackle my stack of digital ARCs I’ve been accumulating was this readathon. I only managed to finish one book and DNF’d another. It was just not that interesting to me. 

One Night for Seduction – Erica Ridley

Let me say, I’m not a fan of the trope where one Main Character (MC) makes a wager concerning the unaware other (MC). It’s obnoxious. I was thrilled when our betted on Diana finds out about Cole’s bet to get her married pretty quickly. I also love the conversation of equality the characters discussed. Diana was a great heroine. I would have loved to get more of Cole’s rags to riches backstory, but all in all, fun read. 


Hopefully today will be more productive! How was your reading day yesterday? Even if you’re not participating in the readathon, tell me about it.

Bout of Books 26

Just as I started typing the title “Moves Like Jagger” by Maroon 5 suddenly started playing on my previously off Spotify so I think it’s a sign. I wasn’t going to officially participate in Bout of Books this time, but then I thought about it. This is the last week of summer for the kids, my stuff still isn’t here…what else can I do? Also I spent all day reading and didn’t count it so might as well get credit. I don’t have a set TBR, but I’ll share what I did read when I’m done (either daily or after the whole week). You can also find me on Instagram @karenafagan for live content.

Have you ever participated in Bout of Books? If so, what’s your strategy?



Bout of Books

#24in48 2016 Summer Edition

Usually when I’m participating in a readathon, I do a few posts on prepping and talk about my proposed TBR. I’ve decided for tomorrow’s #24in48, I’m just going to play it by ear. I made a tentative collection on my Kindle app of books I’ve been meaning to get to, but my print pile is going to just be me working on the Great Read my Hardbacks before they Go to Paperback Challenge. I have a lot of great books published this year I want to get to. I probably will skip nonfiction this weekend, the only exception is Grunt by Mary Roach because she’s Mary Roach and I don’t need any reasons.

I also probably won’t even hit the full 24 hours. I know on Saturday I plan on going  with friends to see our local Shakespeare company Santa Cruz Shakespeare perform A Midsummer  Night’s Dream which is my favorite of the Bard’s plays. So I know there will be a few hours lost there. Maybe if I bring my copy of it and read along it will count?

So that being said, even not hitting all 24 hours, I plan to do as much as I can. 24 in 48 is one of my favorite readathons and I love checking in on Twitter and Instagram to see how everyone is doing, what they are reading, and give snack advice (always something you only need one hand to eat!).

I am not going to be posting updates here, so if you’re not already, find me on Twitter, Instagram, and Litsy as @KarenaFagan.

If you’re participating, please add your social media contacts so we can geek out together. Anyone want to share their book stack?

Bout of Books: Five Fun Flirty Faves

For today’s Bout of Books challenge, they want us to list our five faves. It can be anything and yet I’m still sitting here trying to figure out what books I haven’t pushed in your faces already.

Fun romances.

 Faking It by Jennifer Crusie. Honestly, usually I say Bet Me because it’s one of my favorites, but the crazy in Faking It is too good to pass up. Really most of Crusie’s books could make up this whole list. They are just too fun. Put it this way, when I got rid of all my romance novels during my I hate romance phase (I know, I’m kicking myself too), I kept all of Crusie’s. There is something about her writing that makes me extremely happy. I also will take this time to beg her to write a new book for us.

 

 


The Fairy Godmother by Mercedes Lackey. Okay, I know what you’re thinking, this is fantasy. Except it’s based on fairy tales and the hero and heroine get together in the end. So it counts. While the later books in the series started waning for me, the first in the series The Fairy Godmother and the second One Good Knight are books that I think about all the time. I love the concept of The Fairy Godmother which is what if Cinderella’s prince was unsuitable, what would happen? And also I might have harbored fantasies of becoming a Fairy Godmother myself, but that’s neither here nor there. (Don’t act like you haven’t.)


Never Judge a Lady by Her Cover by Sarah MacLean. The last book of MacLean’s The Rules of Scoundrels series delivers a fun surprise people have been waiting to discover from book one, Chase’s identity (it’s in the synopsis so no one can get upset with spoilers). The fact that Chase is actually Lady Georgina is fun, but what is really fun is watching the rules of society get bent and manipulated by her.

 

 


Gentle Rogue by Johanna Lindsey. I’m going old school here, and introducing another Georgina because there is nothing more fun than a Malory, especially if that Malory is James Malory, gentleman pirate. If you’re just getting on the romance train, you need to go back and devour this series. Gentle Rogue is actually the third in the series, so start with Only Love Once, following James’ niece, Regina.

 

 


Living the Fantasy by Kathy Lyons. A video game entrepreneur falls instantly for a PR rep when he thinks she’s come in to audition for a character of his new video game. The dude falling in love before the lady, I don’t see a whole lot of and I’d love to see more. Also the geek angle makes me smile. Now I’d like to see more lady geeks.

 

 

 

 

 

Pick a category. Then tell me your five favorites. Or tell me your favorite fun romances. Tell me something!

Bout of Books

Bout of Books

I know we just finished Dewey, but now it’s time for another favorite readathon of mine, Bout of Books. What’s Bout of Books? Luckily they made a blurb to tell you about it.

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

I’ll be putting my TBR together this weekend. There are definitely going to be a few titles that I didn’t finish during Dewey. I also have to plot my reading time wisely when it’s a whole week there is a lot of room for getting distracted. It’s also a lot harder to harass ask my husband nicely to take on some tasks that are usually mine.

How do you plan weeklong readathon reading?

Dewey Wrap Up

I don’t want to say I failed the readathon, but I definitely didn’t do as well as I usually do. I lost my whole morning and after dinner, I was just not feeling it (also we were watching the last two episodes of Sense8 and omfg, I love that show).

Here’s the wrap up survey from the site.

  1. Which hour was most daunting for you? Not sure. I wasn’t really keeping track of what hours matched up since I started late.
  2. Could you list a few high-interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year? A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab, American Housewife by Helen Ellis, and Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand in the Sun, and Be Your Own Person by Shonda Rhimes are some recent favorites. Especially if you do the last one on audio!
  3. Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next season? The only thing maybe is to keep encouraging people to cheer at other people. I seemed to have pretty decent interactions, but I saw more than a few people say they didn’t.
  4. What do you think worked really well in this year’s Read-a-thon? I loved following the Twitter prompts.
  5. How many books did you read? Read 4, finished 2.
  6. What were the names of the books you read? Winterwood by Jacey Beford, The Regional Office is Under Attack! by Manuel Gonzales (finished), All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders, and What a Rogue Desires by Caroline Linden (finished).
  7. Which book did you enjoy most? I liked Winterwood. Just need to get back to it.
  8. Which did you enjoy least? The Regional Office is Under Attack! Not that it was bad because I enjoyed it, just not as much as I thought I would.
  9. How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time? Definitely participate again. Probably as a reader again. Who knows? Might volunteer to host.

Now to get ready for Bout of Books.

How did you guys do?

Hour Twelve Survey

Phew. After a bit of a delay, I was able to start the readathon. Deb Nance from ReaderBuzz had this midway survey for us.

1. What are you reading right now? Just started All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
2. How many books have you read so far? started 2, finished 1.
3. What book are you most looking forward to for the second half of the Read-a-thon? Adding wine to the mix.
4. Have you had many interruptions? How did you deal with those?  Got a late start as I went to yoga and had brunch with two of my girlfriends. Mostly haven’t had any interruptions though.
5. What surprises you most about the Read-a-thon, so far? I’m bummed I started late. The morning plans were a last minute addition so I haven’t read as much as I usually do.

 

That’s it for now. Gonna read a bit before I have to scrounge up dinner.

If you’re participating, tell me how your reading day has gone so far. If you’re not, tell me anyway.

Dewey!!!

It’s that time again, friends! The Spring 24 Hour Dewey Readathon. Saturday, April 23rd is your day to make a book pile, pour some Bailey’s into your coffee or hot chocolate, and huddle down into your blanket fort for as long as you can. I say that because you know I can’t do the full 24. Kids and all make sleep a necessity. They know when you’re weak from lack of it and that’s how you find yourself tied to a chair while they run around making war cries, covered in chocolate, while drawing on your furniture. I digress. I plan to do as much as possible. Also Bout of Books is also coming up on the second week of May so make sure you block out that week!

I just made my preliminary print TBR and have dabbled with one on my Kindle app. This feels like it’s going to be pretty fantasy heavy.

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As usual, I’m not going to get to all of these, but I like having some to choose from. A few picks I think will definitely make the cut:

Jane Steele by Lyndsay Faye. I have heard nothing but rave reviews from my best book recommenders. I have never read Jane Eyre (stop, you don’t have to yell at me. I’ll get there eventually. Maybe. When people stop putting out new books.), but I’m told I don’t need to for the story to make sense. Which is a relief.

All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders. Magic and the apocalypse? Let’s do this. Also Anders is a Bay Area author and I like to support our local talent.

The Regional Office is Under Attack by Manuel Gonzales. This one rings so many of my bells. Lady assassins? Sold.

Girl in Translation by Jean Kwok. I’m usually not into lit fic during a readathon, but I’m making an exception here because I tore through Mambo in Chinatown like a demon.

Winterwood by Jacey Bedford. I’ve actually already started this one and the fact the main character is a cross dressing lady magician pirate is basically my wheelhouse.

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Wrath and the Dawn by Renée Ahdieh. I’m actually a bit ashamed I haven’t gotten to it yet. I got lost in historical romance, that’s all I have to say for myself. Also the sequel The Rose and the Dagger is out on April 26th, so I need to get cooking here.

Bitter Bite by Jennifer Estep. This series is usually a quick read, mostly because I skip a bit because she does a lot of repetition on who the characters all are which is frustrating when it’s the fourteenth book in the series. However, I’ve come this far, I want to see the thing through.

Borderline by Mishell Baker. Another that I’ve been meaning to read for about a month now. I just got another goose from a friend of mine who just finished it and needs to express her feels.

Lady Bridget’s Diary by Maya Rodale. I’ve been in historical romance heaven lately so there is a slight possibility this one will be read before Saturday. I’ve really liked Rodale’s books in the past. I hope this one will be no different.

 

If you’re participating, what books are you reading for the readathon? If you’re not, what books are you thinking of reading for funsies?

 

 

January #24in48 Wrap Up

Wow, what a wild ride. The first #24in48 of 2016 is over. I had a great time. I didn’t get to read as much as I wanted to due to the oldest spawn being sick, but I still met my goal and I had fun which is the most important thing. I got a good stack of books off my TBR shelves (which I’m sure will be filled rather quickly).

Here’s the wrap up.

I read nine books, but only finished seven. Those books are

Day 1

  • Silver by Rhiannon Held (finished)
  • The Cinderella Deal by Jennifer Crusie (finished)
  • Dryland by Sara Jaffe (finished)
  • Bright Lines by  Tanwi Nandini Islam

Day 2

  • Bright Lines (finished)
  • Santa Olivia by Jacqueline Carey (finished)
  • American Housewife by Helen Ellis (finished
  • The Murstone Trilogy by Mal Peet (in progress)
  • Passenger by Alexandra Bracken (in progress)

Total time read: 15.75 hours (Goal was 12)

Pages read: 1,751

I was surprised that 3 out of the 9 books had LGBT characters. I didn’t plan it that way, but being that I’m taking my recommendations from places like Book Riot, my selections are becoming more organically inclusive. The three books are Dryland, Bright Lines, and Santa Olivia. I’m tentatively saying three because I haven’t finished The Murdstone Trilogy or Passenger.

I only had one AoC, but that one is on me because I swapped to only my print stack instead of my digital stack where I had more AoC picked out.

I’m deciding right now if I’m going to go ahead and work through this stack I worked out (both digital and print) or start fresh. I think I got through the ones I was super excited to read, at least in print since I never touched the digital shelves.

If you participated how do your stats look? did you have fun? Would you change anything about your strategy for next time? By the way that’s going to be July 23-24 so start planning your book stack now.

#24in48 Readathon Book Stack Commitment

Another readathon you say? Yes, I did. I didn’t post about the #boutofbooks one because I started it while we were on our way back from vacation and then setting up for my youngest spawn’s birthday so shit got complicated. However, this weekend is different. This weekend I don’t have any plans except sit while my husband yells at the tv for football (I’m not gonna lie, I’ll yell a bit too since both our Packers and Panthers are in the playoffs) so I can participate in the #24in48 readathon.

Since I had all that pre mentioned craziness, my reading has been sporadic so I wanted to see where I was in my TBR before plotting my book stack for the readathon. I’ve already kind of talked about little things I do for readathons. No doorstoppers usually. Nothing too complicated.

What did I decide on? Here it is.

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I know! There’s glare. I’m horrible.

My digital shelf is

  • My Life on the Road – Gloria Steinham
  • Saint Mazie – Jami Attenberg
  • A Thousand Naked Strangers – Kevin Hazzard
  • The Dirt on the Ninth Grave – Darynda Jones
  • The Piano Teacher – Janet Y.K. Lee
  • The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet – Becky Chambers
  • Midnight Taxi Tango – Daniel José Older
  • The Last Hellion – Joanna Shupe
  • White Trash Zombie Gone Wild – Diana Rowland

As usual, these are pretty much just guidelines. There’s no way I’m going to be able to read all of them, but this gives me something to work with, without being overwhelmed by my shelves of unread books (Did I mention I have TBR bookcases? Two of them. That’s not counting the digital shelves).

I don’t think I’ll be getting up ridiculously early though to start. I tend to take my time. I have two kids so sleep is valuable. But once I’m up I plan to hit those book stacks hardI have a casserole I made last night and there are catfish tacos tonight so I think dinner should be okay this weekend with leftovers. Other meals they can fend for themselves. I have a bunch of Diet Dr. Pepper in the fridge for daytime reading and a couple bottles of pinot noir for night time. I even have a warm blanket my mom got me for Christmas. Add in cashmere socks and fleece lined leggings and I’m in business. Anyone have a chaise lounge for me to borrow? No? I see how you are.

If you’re participating, I’ll be on Twitter for my updates I’m sure. Also make sure you’re following #24in48 and @24in48readathon. Tell Rachel (she’s running it) Hi and let her know if you’re enjoying yourself. She’s good people and spends a lot of time and energy putting this together for us.

Also, if you’re participating, what are you planning on reading? What’s your strategy?