I am doing the real time reading of Discovery of Witches. It is very nerdy. Let me tell you about it. The events in the novel take place from September 18 to Halloween in 2009. The author, Deborah Harkness, in her infinite wisdom set up a real time read along of the book. When events in the book happen on September 27 you read the chapters that correspond with those events on that day in 2017. It’s great. Not only that, she has a free Kindle book with photos from the places that inspired the book’s settings and a real calendar with each day written out. I have now put them all on my Google calendar and I will be reading it every year with this read along.
It’s one of the best things I’ve ever discovered. Other books that use specific dates and timelines should follow suit.
Popsugar 2017 Reading Challenge : a book you’ve read before that never fails to make you smile
Modern Mrs Darcy Reading Challenge 2017 : read a book you’ve already read
Book Riot Read Harder Challenge 2017 : a book you’ve read before
And so it ends. I received the last book in the Winter series as a digital advanced reader copy from Netgalley. I adore this series (reviews for book 1-3 are below). I heard this is the last one, and she all but confirmed it in an author’s note at the end, which makes me sad. Kelly does die (I was worried he would in my review for book 3) but the family soldiers on, the characters continue and everything is moving forward. They’re all fleshed out and wonderful. There are resolutions but also loose ends. The story could easily continue and I hope it does. Yay for Christmas in August! This book will be released on October 3.
Popsugar Reading Challenge 2017 : a book with one of the four seasons in the title
Modern Mrs Darcy Reading Challenge 2017 : a book you were excited to buy or borrow but haven’t read yet (I love this series!)
Winter Street (book one)
Winter Stroll (book two)
Winter Storms (book three)
Krysten Ritter is an actress. Have you seen Jessica Jones? She is Jessica Jones. Now, I hate it when actors write books. I said this when I read The Wishing Spell by Chris Colfer, from Glee. Actually, this is what I said verbatim.
“Anyway, I HATE books that are written by actors or singers or people who aren’t authors. Unless they’re biographies and then I guess it’s okay because they’re their own life expert. But anything else I detest. Like Madonna and her Roses series or whatever? What is that about. Go sing a song. That’s your job. No one asked you to start writing books. Authors don’t wake up one day and say, “I think I’m going to make an album today” or “I think I’m going to be an actress now.” What if I woke up one day and decided I was going to try my hand at being a brain surgeon? So annoying. ANYWAY, now I can’t say that anymore because this book was pretty good. Although I could said it generally. GENERALLY, I detest books written by actresses or singers etc.”
I should maybe revisit my hatred of authors writing books because Bonfire was a good book y’all. Very suspenseful. Keeps you guessing until the very end. I had no idea what was going on (in a good way) even up to 90% completed. I can’t even tell you what it’s about. So I’ll give you the Goodreads summary.
With tantalizing twists, slow-burning suspense, and a remote, rural town of just five claustrophobic miles, Bonfire is a dark exploration of the question: can you ever outrun your past?
Bonfire will be released on November 9.
Popsugar Reading Challenge 2017 : a book recommended by an author you love (she’s not an author but she work’s for Book Riot)
I was in a reading desert you guys. I hadn’t finished a book in months. I think I’m coming out of it. I just finished In the Woods by Tana French. I’ve seen this book roam around my peripheral at the library for years (released in 2007) and always wanted to pick it up but never did. Probably because, I am not a mystery reader. Especially cozy mysteries. This is not a cozy mystery but just as a side note, what on Earth is the point of reading a book if you immediately know who did it? Woof. I sometimes enjoy a good thriller where you have no idea what the hell is going on. Like Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn or The Good Girl by Mary Kubica, or all those other books that came out and had girl in the title. This book also fills the bill.
This book centers around two murders. One happened 20 years ago and involves the main character, Rob Ryan. The other happened in the same town and revolves around a 12 year old girl. They are compelling and I wasn’t quite sure who did it until more than half way through and even then I didn’t know why. Warning : Do not read this if you like endings that are tied up with a pretty bow. I enjoyed it enough, but I’m not sure I’ll continue the series. However, one thing I like about the series is that each subsequent book follows a different main character. Which doesn’t really make it a typical series. All books could technically stand alone. Interesting.
Popsugar Reading Challenge 2017 : a book from a genre you don’t normally read
I belong to this wonderful Facebook group called, The Book Club. It used to be called something else that I can’t even remember now because it wasn’t very catchy. It has been recently closed to new members so I won’t post the link but it’s a great group. I feel like we’re all very similar and could be friends in real life because inevitably books that they post about are either books I’m also reading, just heard about, or want to read. Since we talk about books almost exclusively, there’s often a repeated refrain. It goes like this, “Oh, I have that book. Never read it.” Many of us in that Facebook group have this problem. There’s a word for this. Tsundoku. No really. Read that article.
“The desire to buy more books than you can physically read in one human lifetime is actually so universal, there’s a specific word for it: tsundoku. Defined as the stockpiling of books that will never be consumed, the term is a Japanese portmanteau of sorts, combining the words “tsunde” (meaning “to stack things”), “oku” (meaning “to leave for a while”) and “doku” (meaning “to read”).”
I have so much tsundoku I don’t even know what to do with myself. Also, is it a verb? A noun? Anyway.. for the month of May people from this group are participating in Read Your Shelves to encourage us to all read books we already own that we ignore. So, for the month of May everyone stops buying books. Stops checking out library books. Only reads books on their shelves. Or at least to the extent that they can handle this directive. I returned all of my library books. Sort of. I still have a few. But I suspended all my holds. Except a few.. ok so I’m 3/4 of the way doing this. But I’m doing good! I’m reading so many things and although I have only finished one I wanted to share what I’m reading with you so I can continue in my excitement and soldier on with #RYSMay2017
Saints for All Ocassions by J. Courtney Sullivan is the one I just finished. It’s a Kindle book that I’ve had on there for a month or so and was only going to eventually read after months of hearing people tell me how good it was. I ask you, what is the point of getting early copies of books if I don’t read them before their release date?
The Golden House by Salman Rushdie. I have never read Rushdie. I think I secretly hate him because I read his ex-wife’s book, Love, Loss & What We Ate by Padma Lakshmi and she portrays him as a horrible person. But that horrible person won the Booker Prize sooo.. what can you do. Side note : I thought he won a Pulitzer until I checked just now. Anyway, this new book of his comes out in September 2017. It’s weird and I may not finish. Truth.
The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón. I have had this book for at least a decade. The previous two books are on my Kindle and as I read along with that wonderful tablet I find it that it’s easier to read in bed on my Kindle than it is to read actual books. This makes me sad. Before I got my Kindle I would’ve said real books were far superior. But nothing can compare to a tiny item that does not need it’s pages turned or the fact that I can read in the dark when my tired hubby wants to sleep and I do not. Therefore, I’m stalling a little on this one because I find it harder to read in bed, which is sometimes where I do my best reading. I’m liking it so much though so I will definitely finish despite this barrier.
Option B by Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant. I had this book before #RYSMay2017 started. It is a library book. But I couldn’t bear to return it because I need to read it. I’ve been avoiding it because I don’t feel like I need a cry just now and I’ve that’s exactly what it does. I adore Sheryl Sandberg. She is so inspiring. I read Lean In 3 years ago and adored it so much. I bought a copy recently because I realized I didn’t own it and it is worth owning. I will be picking up Option B soon soon soon.
It’s a first. I finished a book from Netgalley before its release date! Saints for All Occasions by J. Courtney Sullivan comes out tomorrow, May 9. I could do with a new J. Courtney Sullivan book every two years and so far I’ve gotten my wish. I read another of her books, Maine, in August of 2015 and before that her book Engagements in July of 2013. Quick summary…
“Nora and Theresa Flynn are twenty-one and seventeen when they leave their small village in Ireland and journey to America… Theresa ends up pregnant, Nora is forced to come up with a plan—a decision with repercussions they are both far too young to understand. Fifty years later, Nora is the matriarch of a big Catholic family with four grown children… Estranged from her sister and cut off from the world, Theresa is a cloistered nun, living in an abbey in rural Vermont. Until, after decades of silence, a sudden death forces Nora and Theresa to confront the choices they made so long ago. A graceful, supremely moving novel from one of our most beloved writers, Saints for All Occasions explores the fascinating, funny, and sometimes achingly sad ways a secret at the heart of one family both breaks them and binds them together.”
Saints has multiple points of view and character narratives like her other two that I’ve read and I enjoy this immensely. Multiple POVs for the win y’all. However, Saints also has a past story and a present story which I don’t think the others did. She put the past in seamlessly with the present and it helped accelerate the story and explain the characters more. I loved that it took place in Boston, specifically South Boston and Dorchester, which I’m very familiar with. She talked about Sully’s on Castle Island and Morrissey Boulevard. It makes my heart pitter patter when places I’m familiar with are mentioned in books. I loved the characters. I also love that Sullivan’s books aren’t typically tied up with a bow at the end but still feel satisfying.
Popsugar Reading Challenge 2017 : a book set in two different time periods
Book Riot Read Harder Challenge 2017 : a book that is set within 100 miles of your location
I received Rich People Problems via Netgalley on digital arc. I love these books so much I believe I danced around the room when my copy request was accepted. It is the third (I hope not final) book in the Crazy Rich Asians series which started with book one, Crazy Rich Asians. This book followed Nick and Rachel on their way to the altar. Rachel had no idea her boyfriend Nick was one of the richest men in Asia. When she goes to meet his family she realizes she is in for a whole new world and it is not a world that wants her involved. Book two, China Rich Girlfriend, was not my favorite. Nick and Rachel were no longer the main characters, and we heard a lot from Kitty Pong. Kitty is more of a main character in this third book as well, and although I hate her less, she’s still not my favorite. Nick and Rachel are rarely present, so if you love them be aware. Astrid has more of a play, like she did in book two. Because of the multiple POVs, which I always love in books, I can’t say there really is a main character unless you count Su Li. I don’t want to tell you much of what happens because the central plot is based around a spoiler.
I loved the conclusion and hope to see these wonderful characters again. It did wrap up nicely, but I felt that way about the others as well, so hopefully the stories will continue.
Popsugar Reading Challenge 2017 : a book that’s been on your TBR list for way too long