It’s hard to believe February has already come and gone! This was a great but busy month.
- The Annual Harry Potter Movie Marathon with my girlfriends was great. I put together an exercise game for us, and we ate, drank, worked out, and enjoyed watching all eight films from Friday evening through Sunday afternoon. It was wonderful to rewatch them and reminisce about the first time we read the books.
- I only published 9 posts this month, but that means I’m still meeting my goal of two posts a week! 6 books reviews, one Top Ten Tuesday, and a Building Better Book Clubs series post. I have hope to expand my Book Club series next month, along with a few other series posts I have in mind.
- I WENT TO MY FIRST AUTHOR EVENT! It was AMAZING meeting Brittany Cavallaro, author of A Study in Charlotte. A HUGE shout out to my friend Kelsey for helping me actually find local author events! We went together and it was awesome. Post to come in March.
While it was a great month for reading, it wasn’t a great month for work. I have some major projects due in March, so I expect my blog hopping will slow down. I don’t want my blogging momentum to stop, however! Sorry friends, gotta look out for Number 1 first. 😀 But I’ll do my best to be a visible presence in the community this month. Here’s hoping March is easier than it looks to be!
List of Reads
I had a surprisingly solid reading month. I read three diverse books, but one was a novella… I feel I can do better (That’s right, Naz! You’re an inspiration)! I read zero non-fiction (I totally meant to, Ottavia!), but I did read science fiction (I am aiming for more in the future, Liis) AND fantasy (nothing on your list, Drew, but I’m taking baby steps) AND poetry (That’s all your fault, Gretchen. I love it). It’s starting to be incredibly obvious to me where my book community is influencing me. I couldn’t be happier. And you should all check out their blogs. Because they are great.
Read – 11 total books, 1 DNF
MUST READ this month:
A Gathering of Shadows– HOLY CRAP THIS BOOK. I read it for book club in anticipation of the final book in Shades of Magic being released I finally real A Gathering of Shadows. I KNOW. I know. I’m behind the times. But I don’t like waiting for series books to be published. But this book. Amazing new characters, brilliant character development, fantastic and witty banter, shocks and surprises all around– and that cliffhanger!!!! Good thing I will be immediately picking up the final book.
DANGER! Avoid this month:
The Fortress at the End of Time – A shorter hard science fiction book focusing on philosophy rather than science, I thought this book might really be up my alley. As I was reading it for a book club, I also thought I could get through it. Unfortunately, I ran into unlikable, non-evolving characters with no plot. I was bored and DNF’d this book. Definitely not recommended.
It wouldn’t be tsundoku if I didn’t have a gigantic pile of books waiting for me!
As most of you know, tsundoku means the act of leaving a book unread after acquiring it, typically piled up together with other unread books on shelves, floors, or nightstands. In my case, I get most of my books from the library. But, having 30 books checked out and waiting to be read can be overwhelming. I interpret my tsundoku as a combination of the physical books waiting to be read, but also the gigantic TBR I have listed. My goal? SHRINK THE TBR.
This month I acquired 5 new books! Not too bad, considering my track record. That said, I didn’t really make a dent so much as grow my pile. Oops! In January, my pile was 1,789 books. Now…
WHAT? How did I end up adding 24 books to my TBR? Ugh. I am so disappointed. I marked 12 off of there, and still managed to increase my TBR by 12? That means I added 36 books to my TBR this month. Oy. I seriously have a problem. Only 4 are ARCs, though, so I feel like that’s an improvement. Someone host me an intervention.
I am still super excited about my Building Better Book Clubs series. I currently only have two posts written (February’s post is here!), but I have twelve more in draft! I can’t wait for some weekend when I can just sit down and crank them all out. I hope you all are as excited as me!
I also have the honor of being the judge of a writing group’s writing competition this month. They have spent all quarter working on short stories, and I get to read and review them! I couldn’t be more excited. But also… super anxious. That’s a lot of pressure! I don’t want to shoot down any amateur’s dreams! What suggestions do you have for me in this experience?
- Our Shared Shelf- Women Who Run with the Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Estes
- Kids Lit – Gregor the Overlander by Suzanne Collins; Furthermore by Tahereh Mafi
- West Side Stories – 1984 by George Orwell
- Brunch Books – A Conjuring of Light by V. E. Schwab
- VACB Book Club – TBD
- Science Fiction/Fantasy Book Club: The Fifth Season by N. K. Jemisin
- Popsugar Challenge – Eloise by Kay Thompson
- Read Harder Challenge – Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan
- Listopia Challenge – Jacob Have I Loved by Katherine Paterson
Compared to last month, this TBR is really intimidating. Thankfully, Our Shared Shelf and the VACB book clubs don’t meet each month, so I have extra time to crank through those. That said, I doubt there will be time for a ton of pleasure reading this month. Yikes.
2017 Goal Update:
- Never have a backlog of more than 5 books which need to be reviewed:
- Hm. I might need to reassess this. I have 16 books to review still. Apparently, I am not into book reviews this year.
- Spend 5 minutes a day blog hopping:
- This has been pretty good! I haven’t done it daily, but about every other day at this point. And when I do make time for it, I spend 10-60 minutes blog hopping. I feel on top of this.
- Expand the book discussion question database by at least one book a month:
- Things aren’t looking good for our heroine. No new questions, but at least she updated the Discussion Questions page… <sigh> I will get more questions up there.
- Maintain posting twice a week:
- NAILED IT
- Participate in 5 cross-post style events:
- Make the Thanksgiving Readathon with Ottavia a real thing!
- This is something we’ll chat about closer to Thanksgiving. Probably early Q3.
- Expand my non-book review posts:
A lot more happened in February than I thought! I’m glad that these Month in Review posts exists, if only to keep me honest! March will be a rough month for reading, but I’m hoping I can get some more posts in here. Who knows? Perhaps March will be a really great month for me?
What do you think?
- What advice do you have about my writing competition judging? Any and all suggestions are welcome!
- How do you manage your ever growing TBR? Do you even keep track of it?
- Any guest post opportunities you can think of? Help me get to my goal for the year!