Ramblings regarding reading.
This took me an awfully long time to read, but not because I wasn't enjoying it. This is the kind of book you want to have around to read bits and pieces at a time, and it was a lot of fun to read that way.
I did a decent amount of bothering people with random facts while reading through this as well. My friends can testify to the fact that I may have been sending text messages at unholy hours with something that I just knew they would find fascinating.
The easy-to-digest format and quickness of the blurbs, as well as the randomness of the organization (you never knew what would be on the next page) made this the sort of thing that is better suited to long-term reading and not blasting through, and I'd enjoy having it on my coffee table so people could pick it up and flip through during downtime.
This book was provided to me for free via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
"Gwen's mother was ecstatic.
Gwen was miserable.
She hated crowds, hated having to talk with people she did not know. She did not enjoy dancing with strangers, and the mere thought of being at the center of anyone's attention was terrifying.
She spent a great deal of time standing in corners, trying not to be noticed."
I like this girl! This is probably how I would react to being a debutante, not going to lie here.
(Testing general Booklikes stability here. Fingers crossed, but stuff is loading and that's a nice start.)
"But...but...you're confused. You need to stop this. Stop...um, being a heretic."
So I'm actually enjoying this, but the main character is kind of an idiot, not going to lie. It's moderately excruciating to listen to her.
In other news, I am in fact not dead, just very easily distracted. Catching this back up with my actual reading has gotten to be such a task I've become more and more lazy about it, alas, but I will get there shortly! Hope everyone has been having a lovely start to the cozy holiday/reading season?
I am going to have to digest this a bit before I can even manage a review, I think. I was just...not really expecting it to get quite as dark as it did. It was lovely in the way only strangely dark stuff can manage. If I attempt anything more than this, I am going to get rambly and ridiculous, I can just tell, so we'll leave things there.
This was my "witches" square for the Halloween Bingo, though, and I am very pleased it was.
"They seemed almost themselves to anyone who didn't know them well, and you might spend half a day talking with one of them and never realize anything was wrong, until you found yourself taking up a knife and cutting off your own hand, putting out your own eyes, your own tongue, while they kept talking all the while, smiling, horrible."
Uh, okay, this just took a step into horrifying. Alright. I'm intrigued, book--carry on.
Favorite book of the month: An Old-Fashioned Unicorn's Guide to Courtship by Sarah Rees Brennan, who is basically like magic for me all the time.
Longest in pages: World of Warcraft: Beyond the Dark Portal by Aaron Rosenberg and Christie Golden, at 436 pages
Total books read: 14
Total pages read: 1,851
Average pages per book: 132
Average pages per day: 59
Did not finish: 0
So this month was clearly "dark fantasy short story" month for some reason. This may or may not have something to do with the fact that I could read those in short burst on WoW loading screens. The fact that the longest book I read all month was World of Warcraft related is also connected to this, I'm quite sure.
At any rate, it was a slow month. I will cheerfully read any short story Rosamund Hodge writes, though, and I enjoyed the crop of them I sucked down this month. Well-done short stories are a weakness of mine, and it's nice to find someone who manages them so consistently without them reading too similarly.
September, though, is gearing up into a very solid reading month--the Halloween Bingo is going to be loads of fun, and I can't wait to scare myself senseless and watch everyone else doing so as well!
How did everyone's August reading go? Anyone else super ready for weather where curling up with a good book in front of a fireplace will be valid? Who else is doing the Halloween Bingo?
My "classic horror" choice, and I'm quite enjoying it so far. Things are getting eerie with the neighbors, and I'm intrigued. I've somehow managed to never see the film, and my general understanding of it is mostly "there is a baby at some point, and it is probably evil," so this should be fun.
It's a very quick read, though. I double-checked how far I was for the update, thinking it was about 12%, and was rather surprised to see I was basically a third of the way through.
This wasn't terrible, but it felt quite a bit like a very early novel.
The author is clearly trying to find a voice, and he is starting to, but he hasn't quite managed yet and it makes the book feel a bit clunky. The subplots are awkwardly integrated and the shifts between different character viewpoints don't quite flow naturally. They're not bad, really, but they don't have the kind of polish needed to make them actually add something to the story.
I'll be honest: I almost set this down several times in the first few pages. Neil starts as the type of rather awkward protagonist you occasionally see in horror movies/books--the loner who is somehow not really sympathetic. He does grow on you, admittedly, though part of that is because many of the other characters are particularly obnoxious.
Plot-wise I was intrigued, however. I did see what was happening before the reveal (it was teased a little too long, personally), but it was not necessarily the normal way of handling a story like this, which was interesting. I wish the horror bits had been scarier, though. There are several scenes that are legitimately creepy in outline, but they don't get to the level of visceral detail that makes them terrify the reader.
I'm interested enough to probably pick up the second part, and I do think the author is worth keeping an eye on, but this wasn't quite what I was hoping for. A chunk of that was just plain let-down, however: this could have been very good with a bit more polishing. The ideas are there, even the writing is not at all bad, it just needed a bit more to manage to be good.
(This was my "Ghost Stories and Haunted Houses" read for the Halloween Bingo. I'll be mocking up the card for it later, once I figure out what I'm doing with that.)
Favorite book of the month: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Re-read that changed the rating: Splintered by A.G. Howard, which dropped from a four to a three, quite possibly due entirely to having to suffer through Jeb again.
Longest in pages: Ensnared by A.J. Howard at 420 pages (ouch)
Total books ingested: 26
Total books read: 25
Total pages read: 6548
Average pages per book: 261
Average pages per day: 211
Audiobooks ingested: 1 (I have been lousy about this lately)
Minutes spent listening: 734
Average minutes per day: 23
Did not finish: 0
Average: 3.07, so about average.
I want to start this by saying that this month was a strange month, but since it actually did not differ greatly from the few months proceeding it, I'm a little concerned that this is actually the new normal. :x
I may possibly have pulled the "reviews written" section because if I actually calculated it, this post was going to be even later than it already is out of sorrow. My bad, guys; I've been remarkably lazy lately, and I genuinely need to find a new groove for things before I fall off the boat completely (Metaphor mixed, messy, and probably unnecessary--a sure sign I am not writing enough. Yeesh.)
At any rate, I did generally enjoy what I read this month, so there is that! I picked up some rather quirky stuff, which was interesting. David Sedaris is rather alarmingly hilarious, and the Origami Yoda series, which I picked up on a whim because it was on the shelf in my favorite coffee shop, was utterly adorable. Both are what I'd consider "rather unlike me" in terms of taste, which probably sums up my month pretty well.
I did finally finish the Splintered series, and I'm thinking of figuring out how many other series I have unfinished (A list, perhaps? Or even--gasp!--a challenge?) and actually sitting down to finish them. I can't quite explain my tendency to let them sit for so long, even when I own the entire series. I'm extraordinarily easily distracted (and finishing things is sometimes sad) in terms of books, though, which probably has quite a bit to do with it.
On re-evaluating my reading goal for the year, I have a confession to make: I'm not going to make it. x_x I hate admitting it, but there it is. When I started this year, I was in a rather different place and doing an awful lot more reading (and an awful lot less other things) than I am now, and maintaining a book a day seemed quite feasible (I was running ahead for the entirety of January), but while I'm certainly reading every day, and even reading books every day (the Battlenet forums don't quite count, I know, but WoW addiction is real, guys), I'm not finishing something every day. So I'll be dropping that back down to a more manageable 300 (yes, I'm aware that is still a moderately insane number. I am comfortable with moderate insanity) in the hopes that not feeling behind all the time will remind me to actually login and post things again.
This was alarmingly rambling, even for my rambling tag. How did everyone else's July go, though? Does anyone else leave series unfinished? How are reading challenges going? Read anything amazing? Did everyone else accidentally devour Cursed Child the day of release while imbibing way too much coffee?
Being a V.C. Andrews junkie in my darker moments, I couldn't quite resist this when I saw it on Netgalley. If you've ever read a V.C. Andrews book (or at least one released under her name), you can probably make a good guess on how reading this went, and you'd be remarkably right in almost everything you guessed. It was compulsively readable, but a bit obvious.
Some of that is due to the fact that I've read quite a few of these books, honestly. However, there's generally at least one shocking bit of a twist that I didn't see coming, and one of my issues with this in particular was that I had everything laid out pretty early on in the story and was just waiting for the twists. I don't know if that says something terrifying about my mind (it may), but a level of experience with the genre is likely to net others the same result.
My Sweet Audrina (to which this is a sequel) was one of the stronger Andrews books, I always felt, and I'm not entirely sure how I feel about the character arcs taken in this. Of course, you can't have a novel of this type without some character growth (degeneration?) to give you new villains, but I guess I was hoping for more expansion in the cast than I got.
Audrina continues to be much of the same, and sometimes it is rough to read her because of that--she shows signs of fire occasionally, but she's manipulated and blind throughout. Not necessarily a critique of the book, given she's an established character and she hasn't changed, but it did make things harder now that she is older.
Over all I rather enjoyed this, and I'm glad I picked it up. As a heads up to anyone interested, definitely read My Sweet Audrina first if you intend to read it at all--like many sequels, this spoilers basically all the twists and plot points of the first, and missing those will be missing quite a bit of the fun.
This book was provided to me for free via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.