Bookish Roundup — November, 2017

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Whew! November was a crazy busy month here in the Pathologically Literate household, y’all, and am I glad it is over. C’mon, December – hit me with your best shot!! Despite the craziness of November, I was able to read a total of eighteen books and participate in a five-day Thanksgiving Readathon. Thus, I’m not complaining too much.

Here’s a list of everything I read in November:

So… November, 2017 was the unofficial Month of Cheesy Romance Novels. I loved getting to know the Winston Brothers, and started on a Sarah MacLean series as well. In fact, there were several great reads this month, however, my favorite novel by far was The Story of Arthur Truluv by Elizabeth Berg. Berg has been one of my favorite authors for about twenty years now, but her last few books have really been hit or miss for me. Folks, with The Story of Arthur Truluv, that old Berg magic is back!! Arthur stole my heart about two minutes in and, nearly a month later, has yet to give it back.

Now that December is here, I have twelve more books to read to reach my unofficial goal of reading 225 books in 2017. Piece of cake, y’all!! In fact, barring natural disasters, I believe I shall surpass that goal. Yay, me!! Keep your eyes peeled in January for an update on my Bookish Resolutions for 2017. Until then, friends – Happy Reading!!

What did you read in November?

Thanksgiving Readathon 2017

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It’s finally Thanksgiving week, y’all, and time for a break from everyday life! Homeschool is on hold until next week. The Boy has plenty of activities to keep himself busy with. Poppy is in charge of Thanksgiving dinner this year (hallelujah!!). All I need to do now is sit back… and read, of course! What better way to do that than to participate in the first ever official Thanksgiving Readathon, right?

The Thanksgiving Readathon, hosted by the blogs Novels and Nonfiction and Death by Tsundoku, will run from Wednesday, November 22 through Sunday, November 26, 2017.  It’s a very informal and laid-back style of Readathon, in that your goal is simply to read as many books as you can over those four days. No rules or regulations, no competition, no pressure. My kind of thing, for sure. For more information about how you can participate, read this post.

I don’t know exactly what I’ll be reading during these four days, however I do have four books I would definitely like to get into:

I have several other books on my Kindle Paperwhite as well as a stack from the library that are waiting patiently for me, so things are not limited to just the four mentioned above by any means. I cannot wait to get started and down to business.

The main concern I’ve heard from friends is, “Isn’t this going to interfere with your Thanksgiving plans?” To which I respond, “What plans?!” Not really, y’all. But Thanksgiving, for my small family, has been very laid-back for the last few years. It’s just Poppy, The Boy, and myself eating a happy meal on the special day. There’s no big to-do or traditional gathering, etc. I definitely prefer it to Thanksgivings past, where we did have to go through the motions of a big holiday feast. This is so much more relaxing, and meaningful, in a way.

The best part of our small, laid-back holiday is, of course, that I have mucho time for reading!! I’m so excited to get started on the Thanksgiving Readathon, so I’m going to go do just that. I hope you decide to join me and have a blast yourselves! Either way, y’all… Happy Reading!!

Do you celebrate Thanksgiving in your home? What are some of your traditions? If you’re participating in this year’s readathon, share your TBR below!!

My Bookish Resolutions for 2016

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At the end/beginning of each year, I sit and think on any goals or ambitions I might have for my reading in the coming new year. I generally keep these filed away in a random part of my mind, thinking about them only rarely, when it is convenient for me or when I am reminded of them. Thus, it is often that I do not reach said goals or lofty ambitions that I set for myself – surprise, surprise. I’m going out on a limb here and sharing with you my Bookish Resolutions for 2016 in the hope that seeing these words in black and white will make them more real to me, and thus more attainable – and also, because a little accountability and fear of public failure/humiliation is always good for motivation from time to time…

1. read a minimum of 150 books in 2016.

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As part of the Goodreads 2016 Reading Challenge, I have pledged to read 150 books by December 31, 2016. In past years I have read: 171 in 2015, 225 in 2014, and 213 in 2013. We had a few bumps in the road in 2015 that ate into my reading time, bringing my total down quite a bit from past years. As certain issues are yet to be resolved, I’m going to play it safe and keep my challenge goal down to a manageable number since I  just don’t seem to be able to keep up with my former pace as of late.

2. keep a private reading log (separate from Goodreads and Pinterest).

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Two words, y’all: PIE CHARTS. I’m so jealous of the book bloggers that keep such meticulous records that they are able to produce pie charts outlining their reading habits at the end of each year, and have been telling myself for ages that I am going to do the same: This. Is. The. Year! Amanda Nelson at Book Riot tracks her reading via The Ultimate Reading Spreadsheet in Google Docs. She shares the template for her spreadsheet here. I have downloaded it to Excel and, after making various personalizations, will be recording the hell out of my reading in 2016 so I can get my pie chart groove on next January…

3. read the books I own.

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I continue to amass a collection of novels (mainly on my Kindle) that then remain unread as I continue to aggressively read library checkouts and NetGalley selections. While my situation is not as dire as my friend Cathy’s over at 746 Books, if I don’t take action now it could certainly grow to such an outlandish situation. How am I going to achieve this? I’m not yet sure. So many new releases are tempting me, as well as all of those goodies on my TBR list – I must be strong, y’all. I’m thinking… Maybe one book I own for every one or two library/NetGalley books, perhaps? I’ll have to fine-tune my process over the next month or two and will return here for an update. Andi over at Estella’s Revenge has started up a “read whatcha got” reading effort for 2016 called #ReadMyOwnDamnBooks. As she says, it’s totally a choose-your-own-adventure, no rules type of thang – if you’re interested and would like to join in, you can link up here.

4. Continue to read more diverse books.

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I thought I was making a conscious effort to do this in 2015, but apparently not, for I failed miserably. Out of 171 books, only 28 of them could truly be classified as diverse literature. However, it is a new year and time for a fresh start! I’ve read nine books so far in 2016, and three of them can be classified as diverse literature. Over at the website for We Need Diverse Books, I have pledged to read a minimum of fifty diverse books this year – that would mean, if I were to reach my goal of 150, that 1/3 of those books would be written by or about people of all diverse experiences, including (but not limited to) LGBTQIA, people of color, people with disabilities, and ethnic, cultural, and religious minorities. This is equal to about four to five “diverse” books each month. Personally, I think it should be more than that and plan to be a bit more intentional about the books I read in order to try to increase that amount, but I will ultimately be satisfied if I reach my original goal of fifty, because I can always improve upon that in 2017!

5. Join a book club.

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I’ve always wanted to be in a book club. Always. Alas, no one I know (IRL) likes to read the way I do or would ever consider forming a book club with me. Boo-hoo. Rushing in to save the day, however, is Amy Allen Clark over at MomAdvice.com! Amy recently created the MomAdvice Hangout (join us!) over on Facebook, a group of which I am a part, and which I adore! We chat about all kinds of things, of course, but an oft-discussed topic is books, books, and more books. The best part is that Amy has created the MomAdvice Book Club, which began in January, 2016. Our first book, chosen by Amy herself, is The Japanese Lover by Isabel Allende – it was a great read, and I can’t wait for the discussion to start!

These are my top five resolutions for 2016 – as they relate to reading, that is. It’s going to be a great year full of great reads, I can just sense it (my TBR list is telling me so, as well)!

Have you made any bookish resolutions for 2016? Please share in the comments below!

Library Love: March 17, 2015

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Library Love is a recurring post in which I share the weekly bounty from my public libraries.

 

 

 

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day, y’all! As you can see, we’ve got our green goin’ on today – how about you? I had to run out last night to buy The Boy & I Shamrock shirts for today so we would be pinch-proof. Other than that we don’t actually do much around here to celebrate the holiday (although you should check out my Pinterest Board for some fun ideas) but it’s always nice to at least dress the part. Not that anyone actually sees us since we homeschool, but at least we know we’re complying with the Irish Holiday bylaws! I found some awesome reads last week at the libraries, y’all – I’ve already cracked open a couple of them and cannot wait to get to the rest. Let’s take a look:

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I will say that I’ve already read Kindred and Speak, and they were both great novels, particularly Speak. Very powerful stuff, y’all. God Don’t Like Ugly is a novel I tried to read about ten years ago but never finished (for some unknown reason) so now it’s time for Round #2! I’ve had The Paying Guests on hold for a long, long time and it’s finally my turn – woo-hoo! A Goodreads friend rated Finding Jake very highly, so I have high hopes for it. I’ve also heard great things about T. Geronimo Johnson, so Hold It ‘Til It Hurts will hopefully be a winner, as well. It looks like I’m up to my eyeballs with books this week so I’d better get crackin’. Happy Reading, y’all!

Do you do anything to celebrate good ‘ol Saint Patrick’s Day? Share below!

Weekly Review: Sunday, July 6, 2014

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Oh, y’all, the 4th of July weekend is OVER – thank you, sweet baby Jesus! I know I’ve complained about my dislike of this holiday already, but this year was particularly bad with the fireworks in our neighborhood – I was sure someone was going to get killed or that a house or two was going to burn to the ground… Thankfully it rained around 2:00 AM, so I was able to fall asleep with the knowledge that any fires would be dampened and put out by Mother Nature. Wish that could happen every year! Well, I read my little (OK, not-so-little) bum off this week – had some great books on hand. Let’s take a look:

Books I read this week:

Book I’m currently reading:

Posts from the week of June 29th:

Upcoming posts for the week of July 7th:

  • Review: Little Mercies by Heather Gudenkauf
  • Library Love
  • …and more!

I read two novels and one short story by Chevy Stevens – all three were great, although Never Knowing was the best of the trio. China Dolls was a major winner in my book; I really, really enjoyed it. Ron Rash kicked ass with Nothing Gold Can Stay – I’ve read two of his novels and now this short story collection and he has blown me away every time! I’m definitely planning on reading more of his books. I’m reading The Midwife of Hope River right now and it’s a looking like it’s going to shape up to be one good read. I’ve got a couple of other great books lined up for the coming week – can’t wait to get started on them. Until next week, y’all – Happy Reading!

Did you read any books this week that blew your socks off?

 

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Weekly Review: May 4, 2014

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Y’all, my baby is growing up! The Boy will be thirteen this week; I can’t even believe it’s true. We were at the doctor the other day and there was a tiny little baby there that looked almost just like The Boy did when he was a wee one, and it brought tears to my weepy little eyes. How did this happen so quickly? So much time has passed, and far, far too quickly. While there are many things I’m proud of, there are so many things I wish I could go back and do over again. Too late, I suppose – he’s officially a teenager. Yikes! I mentioned on Friday that this was a crazy-busy week, and I was not exaggerating. I only made it through four books and one short story this week – way below my usual standards. Let’s take a look:

Books I read this week:

Book I’m currently reading:

Posts from the week of April 27th:

Upcoming posts for the week of May 5th:

  • Review: This Dark Road to Mercy by Wiley Cash
  • Library Love
  • …and more!

Not taking into consideration my low reading quota, The Roots of the Olive Tree was this week’s surprise hit. I’d been worried it would be a little dry and perhaps even boring – but no! This was an beautifully written novel that captured my attention from the first page, and had captured my heart as well by the time I was finished. We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves was a good read, as well – a little long-winded at times, but interesting nonetheless, about a woman who grew up with a chimpanzee as her sister for part of her childhood. It’s much more involved than that, of course, and it’s oh, so good. Come Home and The Target were {yes, I’ll say it again} guilty pleasure reads – the latter was the winner of the two by far. You know, I call these types of books (mystery/thrillers) my guilty pleasure reads, but I sure have a lot of them! How about you?

What/who are your “guilty pleasure” books/authors?

 

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Weekly Review: Sunday, April 20, 2014

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What a great week! We took a few days off of school and just lounged around the house, reading books and watching a little TV. The Boy is currently obsessed with CSI: Miami re-runs on Netflix, so we managed to fit a couple episodes of that in each day. As for my own TV watching (which is usually nonexistent), I just discovered that Dexter is now available with Netflix streaming. Hallelujah! I left off at the end of Season 4, so now I get to catch up. So. Excited. Of course, The Boy will not be joining me in the viewing of this show – yikes! We spent this Easter weekend with a sleepover (of course) and dying Easter eggs. The Boy also volunteered to help out at the church Easter Egg hunt on Saturday – he was pretty disappointed to be too old to actually participate in the hunt, so he sucked it up and did the next best thing. As I mentioned above, we got a lot of reading in this week. Let’s take a look:

Books I read this week:

Book I’m currently reading:

  • Killer (Alex Delaware, #29) by Jonathan Kellerman

Posts from the week of April 13th:

Upcoming posts for the week of April 21sr:

  • Review: Who Asked You? by Terry McMillan
  • …and more!

OK, y’all, now I borrowed Love That Dog from the library for The Boy to read, but I took a look at it first and it is the sweetest, most delightful little book! It is written in poetry form, from the point of view of a young boy and it captured my heart right away. I even wept at one point. Wept, I say! You absolutely want to take a look at it and then share it with your children, if you have any. Whistling Past the Graveyard is another book that stole my heart – I did not want it to end, ever. Another great one to read; while it’s written as adult fiction, this would also actually be appropriate for a read-aloud with your older children. Let’s hear a woot-woot for Terry McMillan, whom I have adored for years and years – Who Asked You? wasn’t as sassy as some of her earlier works, but it still rocked. Prayers for the Stolen was an excellent, excellent read, and Mrs. Poe was surprisingly captivating. You know, I never used to be a very big fan of historical fiction, but in the last year or so I’ve really been digging the genre. What about you?

Are you a fan of historical fiction? Why/why not?

 

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