Bout of Books 15.0 | Sign Up & Updates

Bout of Books


 

The UPDATES!

SUNDAY 1/10/16

Currently reading: Nothing

Pages read today:  0

I ended up not reading anymore after finishing The Ocean at the End of the Lane, but that’s OK.  I’m pretty happy with myself.  Although I didn’t read every day, I did finish 2 books.

SATURDAY 1/9/16

Currently reading:  The Ocean at the End of the Lane

Pages read today:  54

FRIDAY 1/8/16

Currently reading:  The Ocean at the End of the Lane

Pages read today:  75

THURSDAY 1/7/16

Currently reading:  The Ocean at the End of the Lane

Pages read today:  0

WEDNESDAY 1/6/16

Currently reading:  The Ocean at the End of the Lane

Pages read today:  42

TUESDAY 1/5/16

Currently reading:  The Ocean at the End of the Lane

Pages read today:  …4

MONDAY 1/4/16

Currently reading:  None

Pages read today:  87


The GOALS!

  1. Read every day.  No time limits, but I’m hoping to read for at least an hour.
  2. Complete 2 books.  If I complete more, go me.
  3. And as always, have all the fun!

 

The TBR!
Fahrenheit 451    The Absolute Sandman, Volume Three


 

The TOTALS!

# of Pages read:  262

# of Books read:  ~1.5

Escape from Camp 14: One Man's Remarkable Odyssey from North Korea to Freedom in the West  The Ocean at the End of the Lane


 

Bout of Books 15.0 is here, and I’ll be participating.  Last year, I pretty much didn’t read or keep up with this blog, but it’s a new year, and I’ll hopefully be able to devote more time to reading and blogging.  We’ll see.  Like last year, I feel like this read-a-thon is a great way to get back into both.

The Bout of Books Read-a-Thon was created by Amanda @ On a Book Bender on a complete whim in August 2011*. It took on a life of its own and was such a hit that Amanda decided to do it again and turn it into a somewhat regular occurrence.

(To read all about Bout of Books and it’s awesomeness click the image!)

 


 

Book Review | The Shock of the Fall | Shattered heart is shattered.

The Shock of the Fall

The BLURB!

I’ll tell you what happened because it will be a good way to introduce my brother. His name’s Simon. I think you’re going to like him. I really do. But in a couple of pages he’ll be dead. And he was never the same after that.

(from Goodreads)

The REVIEW!

For a debut novel, The Shock of the Fall was freaking awesome.  Hell, for a however many numbered novel, this book was pretty spectacular.

This book follows Matthew and adult mental illness and very real family connections.  It shows how mental illness can affect everyone’s lives and how the person with the illness sees themselves, their family, and life/society.  It was raw and bitter and beautiful to read.

Filer did just a fantastic job at giving Matthew an original and very genuine voice.  I may not have liked him some of the times (partly because he’s a bit of an asshole), but I connected with Matthew pretty early on.  His struggles with himself, his family, and his illness were heart wrenching to witness.

The Shock of the Fall is told entirely in Matthew’s point of view, and it is written/told in a diary-type format (without the weird dated headers – which I really liked not seeing).  Filer did something pretty neat by changing up the text from normal, traditional font to typewritten.  It means something in the story and being able to see the changes really helped elevate this story to a whole new level for me.

What kept this novel from being 5 stars was the slow/disjointed beginning.  It took me a while to get used to the writing and because I couldn’t grasp the changes quick enough, my reading of this book for about the first 50 pages or so was just as disjointed and slow as reading the novel felt to me.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book.  There was a bit of hype around The Shock of the Fall and sometimes the hype isn’t deserved.  For this novel though, it really was.

The RATING!

Bout of Books #14 – Signup and Updates

Bout of Books

Bout of Books 14 is here and Day 1 has come and gone!  I’ve been in a reading slump after starting my new job, but I’m back! What better way to get out of a slump than a read-a-thon?  It really is the perfect time to get back into the swing of things.

 Bout of Books is always such a great time, and I’m looking forward to participating again this time around.


Day 2 Updates

Pages Read: 56

Books Completed:  0

Currently Reading:    The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman


Day 1 Updates

Pages Read:  298

Books Completed: 0

Comics Read: 10

Currently Reading:  The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman


Bout of Books Goal

To read every day.  I’m just coming out of a reading slump, and I don’t want to go crazy, but I do want to read daily.  That’s the only goal I’ve got.

I hope everyone has an excellent read-a-thon!  Stop by and chit chat books with me.  I’d love to know how Bout of Books is going for you!

Book Review | The Absolute Sandman Vol. 2 | Such Imagination!

The Absolute Sandman, Vol. 2 by Neil Gaiman

The BLURB!

Ten thousand years after banishing to Hell a woman who scorned him, Morpheus, the King of Dreams, has decided to free his former lover. But when the Sandman arrives in the realm of eternal damnation, Lucifer, the first fallen angel, notifies him that he is closing down Hell and he wants Morpheus to have the keys. Now in charge of the gates of Hell, the King of Dreams is bombarded with requests for possession of the empty kingdom by Norse gods, homeless demons, Egyptian deities, Faerie ambassadors, the lords of Chaos and Order, and Japanese divinities. Realizing too late that Lucifer’s gift was a veiled curse, Morpheus is forced to make a decision that will affect every plane of existence as well as the universal balance of power.

(^^Taken from The Sandman Vol. 4: Seasons of Mists ^^)

The REVIEW!

Death calls Dream out on being a dick.

Sure, I could say that in a nicer way, but really, that’s what she does.  Dream’s arrogance in the past is the only reason he banished his former lover to Hell, and after 10,000 freaking years, and being called out on his asshat-ery, he decides to enter Lucifer’s Hell and free her.

Like the blurb says though, Lucifer is closing up shop.  He’s bored and tired of Hell, and Lucifer’s decided to pass on the key to someone else (Dream).

This causes Dream all sorts of headaches, but he wants to free his former love, so he’s forced to accept the key and all the burden that goes along with it.

I absolutely loved this arc, and if that’s where the story ended, this would have been 5/5 stars.  It was imaginative as hell, and I loved reading about all the different characters/deities trying to get Dream to choose them to rule Hell.

It was a blast to read.

The other arcs, while interesting when I saw the full picture, didn’t always fascinate me the way the main arc had.  They were still fun to read though, and I did enjoy pretty much all of them.

I’m still loving the art.  I think the artists have continued to do an exceptional job creating a world fit for Neil Gaiman’s words. I loved taking the time and looking at all of the art at the end of the book too, with artists’ different interpretations of Dream.

That was neat to look at.

I’m still absolutely recommending this series to anyone and everyone.  It’s still so fantastic to me!

The RATING!

(I wanted more Dream, more Endless

All the Dream, all the Endless)

#Bout of Books 13 | Updates

Bout of Books

Woohoo!  Bout of Books has begun!  I’ve already shared my anticipated TBR for the read-a-thon, and I’m so excited about reading all of the books (well, some of the books, since I’ve started my new job, and I’m not sure how much reading I’ll actually do this week).

Still the excitement is real!

This post is going to be updated daily (hopefully) with my progress during Bout of Books.

UPDATES

Tuesday – Books Read:  1  | Pages Read:  134

Total Pages Read:  160

Currently Reading:  Trigger Warning: Short Fictions and Disturbances  The Ocean at the End of the Lane

Goal For Wednesday:  Write up the review for The Absolute Sandman Vol. 2 and to do the daily challenge.  And then, hopefully finish The Ocean at the End of the Lane.  We’ll see.


Monday – Books Read:  0  | Pages Read:  26

Currently Reading:  The Ocean at the End of the Lane  The Absolute Sandman, Vol. 2  Trigger Warning: Short Fictions and Disturbances

GOTD:  To finish The Absolute Sandman Vol. 2, to read one short story from Trigger Warning, and possibly finish The Ocean at the End of the Lane.

Depending on how this evening goes, I’ll determine if I need to fix my personal goals or remove them completely.

We’ll see.

Happy reading all!


Book Review | The Emperor’s Soul | Fantastic Fantasy

The Emperor's Soul

The BLURB!

A heretic thief is the empire’s only hope in this fascinating tale that inhabits the same world as the popular novel, Elantris.

Shai is a Forger, a foreigner who can flawlessly copy and re-create any item by rewriting its history with skillful magic. Condemned to death after trying to steal the emperor’s scepter, she is given one opportunity to save herself. Though her skill as a Forger is considered an abomination by her captors, Shai will attempt to create a new soul for the emperor, who is almost dead.

Probing deeply into his life, she discovers Emperor Ashravan’s truest nature—and the opportunity to exploit it. Her only possible ally is one who is truly loyal to the emperor, but councilor Gaotona must overcome his prejudices to understand that Shai’s forgery is as much artistry as it is deception.

Brimming with magic and political intrigue, this deftly woven fantasy delves into the essence of a living spirit.

The REVIEW!

With less than 200 pages, The Emperor’s Soul was able to tell a complete, fully developed and highly interesting story.  Brandon Sanderson is clearly a freaking master of fantastic fantasy, and while I’m pretty new to his writing, I’ve been extremely impressed by his stories so far.

Shai is the main character, and as the blurb says, she’s a Forger.  Forger’s in this society aren’t regarded very highly, but when the Empire needs her,  Shai is given the incredible task of saving the Emperor by using her skills, all the while being looked down on and used.  She was such a strong, well written heroine, and again, I have to say how impressed I am by Sanderson’s ability to create such an excellent character in so few pages.

The plot and story were excellently written, and I was completely invested in the story from pretty much page one, and I stayed interested until the end of the book.  The pacing felt perfect to me.  There was enough informative background that I wasn’t confused as to what Shai was doing for the Empire, and there was enough dialogue and/or action that kept me focused fully on Shai and her situation.  Let’s face it, I sometimes have Reader ADD, and if I get bored, I scan.  I didn’t scan any sentence.  Heck, I sometimes re-read wonderfully written sentences, because I liked them so much.

This is such a fangirling review, but it really was a great story.  I highly recommend it.  I’m not sure if you need to read another of Sanderson’s novels first, as The Emperor’s Soul is set in the same world as his novel Elantris, but I haven’t read that novel yet, and I wasn’t confused or put off by this one.

I think this could be a great teaser story to get people into fantasy, and I’d suggest giving it a read.

The RATING!

Weekend Reads | A Weekend of Comics and Fantasy

Happy Friday!  Today is my last day at a job that I’ve been at for almost 7 years.  It’s been a wonderful place to work for, and I don’t know if I’ll find better co-workers and friends.  They’ve made working in the office pretty freaking stress free, and that’s hard to say working at a law firm.  I’ll miss them all, but I’m pretty excited about starting this next adventure in my life.

It’s going to be awesome.

Now, onto the books!

I’m going to be stopping by a comic shop this evening and picking up the latest Wicked and the Divine (forgot to pick it up when it came out, and then I got super busy) and taking a look at some other comics I may want to pick up (undecided so far as to what to try out though – gonna wing it).

Also, I’m finally getting myself added to their Pull List.  There are a couple of comic series coming out that I’m uber excited about – namely 21st Century Tank Girl and Invader Zim.

The Wicked + The Divine #10     Pre-order the INVADER ZIM comic fiasco now! Come on!Also, it drives me insane how far apart the Z looks from the rest of my last name . This is older promotional art, though, so it won’t actually look like that and I hope that old font gets deleted forever!onipress:

You can now pre-order Invader Zim #1! Tell your local comic shop you want code MAY151468 to place your order.

I can’t wait to get my hands on them!

Other than WICDIV #10, I’m going to be finishing The Absolute Sandman Vol. 2 and The Emperor’s Soul, and then I’ll hopefully be starting and finishing The Killing Joke.

And that sounds like a pretty fun filled weekend of reading.  I’ll probably start Elantris, but I know I won’t finish it.   It’ll be the first book I start reading for Bout of Books 13.

Hope you have a fantastic Friday and weekend filled with all the books!