April Goals

Hey bookish fam,

I have some making up to do for March, see my monthly wrap-up for why. Thus, I’ll be pledging more than 6 books for April.


Spill-over from February and March

I am almost done with both The Dark Game (and ARC) and Watchmen, but I have still sooooooo much left of The Stand. I am hoping to use the Dewey pre-readathon challenges to make substantial progress with the latter and for sure finish the two former.

April list


My King of Scars library copy expires soon, so I really need to get to it ASAP.  I probably start on that this evening. I am reading The Haunting of Hill House for Spring into Horror, and Anne of Green Gables as well as Sorry I Wrote So Many Sad Poems Today for Dewey’s 24-hr readathon. Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights have been on my list for way too long and I really want to finish both this month. At the moment, I don’t have any ARCs due in May, so I can fully focus on my TBR.


Well, I have my work cut out in April. What are you pledging to tackle this month? Leave me a comment. Let’s work on those commitments together. 🙂

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March goals

Hey bookish fam,

I think my February goal setting paid off, and thus I will continue this little promise series at the beginning of each month. Indeed, I was able to read each of the 6 books I had committed to (plus some more, see my monthly wrap-up) as it kept me motivated since I made such a public vow. So without further ado, here are my goals for March.


 


I have several buddy/group reads planned this month: The Stand, Pet Sematary,  and Legion. In fact, since this post is a tad late, I have already started Legion and will probably start The Stand or Pet Sematary tonight (my library copy expires by mid-March). I own a copy of The Stand but with a whopping ~1450 pages, I will need all month to finish it. I am super pumped to read  Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark. I bought these books a while ago and with the upcoming movie, I need to read them soon. Little Darlings and The Dark Game are both ARCs that I’d like to review by the end of March. Looks like the theme this month again is “let’s see how scared I can get”. I love it!


6 books worked for February so I am keeping this number for March. What are you pledging to tackle this month? Leave me a comment. Let’s work on those commitments together. 🙂

February Goals

Ok y’all! In an effort to be more transparent and also force myself to some accountability, I am joining a little game of “what shall I commit to reading this month” or “how I learned to prioritize”. I’ve said on numerous occasions that I am a total mood reader, so monthly TBRs literally (I am using this ironically here because I of course mean figuratively, but I am talking about literature, so why not) scared the bejeezus out of me. For anyone wondering what a bejeezus is (for me), I’d say it’s a cross between Beetlejuice and my high school lunch lady – both frightening but widely misunderstood. Anyway, without further ado, here are my must-reads for February.


 


The Exorcist and Let The Right One In have been on my TBR for way (pause) too (pause) damn (pause) long and they are part of my 2019 goal to reduce my backlog. Both are buddy or group reads that actually start today. I can’t wait to begin either one (or both) later this evening. My book club decided to have our monthly prompt be “the shortest book on our TBR” as an homage to February being the shortest month of the year. In Conclusion, Don’t Worry is my pick. I adore Lauren Graham and have read all her other books. I am hoping my library copy of Ruin and Rising will come through soon as I AM DYING to finish this trilogy and find out what happens to The Darkling, Nikolei, Alina and Mal! On The Come Up is my BOTM selection for this month and I am trying to read the book during the month I actually receive it (tell that to my physical bookshelf backlog -_-). I made fantastic progress with my ARCs in January, so I am actually ahead of schedule on that front (she says that as she hovers over the “request” button on NetGalley), and Will Haunt You is my last book I need to review this month.


6 books seem like a manageable commitment even for a mood-reader and picky twat like myself. I should have plenty of time left to pick my other February reads on a whim. What are you pledging to tackle this month? Leave me a comment. Let’s work on those commitments together. 🙂

a big thank you

Hi book lovers,

I had set a goal hope to break the 100 follower barrier and, you guys, it happened!!!!! I am so excited and humbled by this. It has been a bit of a struggle to get the blog to be what I want it to be, and, truth be told, I am not yet 100% satisfied with it. I’ve been loving everyone’s likes and comments though. It’s nice to feel like I am reaching an audience.

With that said, I’d like to welcome new followers in hopes we will have a fun 2019 filled with lots of books and lots of enthralling discussions. I know I love and look forward to everyone’s weekly, monthly, or whenever posts!

Much love,

ich lese

 

P.S.: Introduce yourself in the comments. Link to your blog. Just say hi. Let’s all get to know and support each other.

2018 wrap-up survey

Hi bookies and lovers of the literary life,

Jamie from The Perpetual Page Turner created this wonderful end-of-year survey and what better way for me to wrap-up 2018 than by answering her questions.

I am going to link to Goodreads reviews or blog posts as much as possible. So, here goes nothing, or everything ….

 

ich lese

 

**2018 READING STATS**

 

Number Of Books You Read

124

Number of Re-Reads

2

The Pit and the Pendulum, E.A. Poe and The Captain Verses, Pablo Neruda)\

Genre You Read The Most

I didn’t actually count them but I’d say it’s either fantasy or horror (especially since my fantasy reads often have paranormal or horror elements).

 

best-YA-books-2014

1. Best Book You Read In 2018?

I’d have to say Carrie by Stephen King. I’ve read lots of books with 5-star ratings this year but Carrie just kinda stuck with me! I keep coming back to the plot and the sentiment behind the story and it grips me every time.

1

 

2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?

The Great Gatsby (F. Scott Fitzgerald)

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3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?

One Day in December (Josie Silver). This book was so much more than a winter romance read! It caught me by surprise how invested I was in the characters and how much I actually cried. 

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4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)?

All the books I recommended were recommended to me by my trusty book buddies who are avid readers. I’ve recommended these books to other friends who don’t read as much and I know they’ve been added to their lists but I can’t tell how many were actually read.

Books I’ve repeatedly recommended throughout the year include: and were some of my favorite 2018 reads: The Snow Child (Eowyn Ivey), Wintersong (and Shadowsong, S. Jae-Jones), Six of Crows (and Crooked Kingdom, Leigh Bardugo), Milk and Honey (Rupi Kaur), I’ll Be Gone in the Dark (Michelle McNamara), The Outsider (Stephen King), and Supernatural Tales (Vernon Lee aka Violet Page).

 

 

 

5. Best series you started in 2018? Best Sequel of 2018? Best Series Ender of 2018?

For sure the Six of Crows duology!

 

 

 

6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2018?

S. Jae-Jones. Her twitter account has become my life!

 

7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?

I’ve read two poetry novels in my life. One by Sarah Crossan in 2017 and The Crossover by Kwam Alexander in 2018. I loved The Crossover (and I also loved One but this post is not about 2017). It was an unexpected kind of joy to read this book! And I want every middle school library to stock this book. 

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8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?

The Outsider by Stephen King. I devoured that book!

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9. Book You Read In 2018 That You Would Be MOST Likely To Re-Read Next Year?

Carrie by Stephen King!

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10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2018?

That’s a toss-up between Supernatural Tales by Vernon Lee and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith. 

 

 

 

11. Most memorable character of 2018?

Carrie for sure. I loved her rage!

 

12. Most beautifully written book read in 2018?

The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey. Her prose was mesmerizing!

154

 

13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2018?

My Friend Fear by Meera Lee Patel.

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Also, probably, Carrie 😉 … actually definitely Carrie.

 

14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2018 to finally read?

The Six of Crows duology by Leigh Bardugo.

 

 

I almost said Carrie again but honestly, I don’t think I would’ve appreciated this novella for what it is during my younger years.

 

15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2018?

This right here highlights why I made a 2019 goal to write down quotes from books! I loved many passages of books in 2018 but couldn’t tell you one as I made no effort to note them down (and I can’t even tell you why – I usually do). 

 

16. Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2018?

Shortest: Sloth at the Zoom by Helaine Becker (32 pages)

Longest: The Song of the Orphans by Daniel Price (748 pages)

 

 

 

17. Book That Shocked You The Most

I don’t read a lot of thrillers or suspense but the book that messed with my head the most was The Three-Body Problem by Liu Cixin. This was an intense, very slow sci-fi read but tackled questions that are truly scary to me; for example, how would Earth and mankind be changed if we had definite proof of alien life!

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18. OTP* OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)
*one true pairing

Liesl and her Erlkönig from the Wintersong duology. Ever since a young girl, I’ve been obsessed with the goblin king, brought to you by a Goethe poem!

 

 

 

19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year

Britta and Dori from Beyond the Green by Sharlee Mullins Glenn. Their love for each other and the heartbreak they go through tugged at my heartstrings. 

127

 

20. Favorite Book You Read in 2018 From An Author You’ve Read Previously

And again, my answer is Carrie. 🙂

1

 

21. Best Book You Read In 2018 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure/Bookstagram, Etc.

Wintersong for sure. As I said der Erlkönig is one of my favorite folklores and reading a novel centered around his tales didn’t seem appealing at first as I was afraid the book couldn’t hold up to my expectations. After hearing only good things about it and reading reviews from trusted bookish friends, I finally gave in, and oh boy am I glad I did.

347

 

22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2018?

Carrie? I don’t tend to develop crushes for fictional characters. 

 

23. Best 2018 debut you read?

I’ll Be Gone in the Dark by Michelle McNamara. Her writing was beautiful and poetic despite the gruesome theme of her book. I am sad that she has passed away and I won’t be able to read more by her.

192

 

24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?

Six of Crows and Crooked Kingdom. I can’t fathom how good Leigh Bardugo is at setting the scene!

 

 

 

25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?

That’s a tough one but I’d have to say Scrappy Little Nobody by Anna Kendrick. She reads it herself and I loved the audiobook. She is outspoken and loud. Her jokes are raunchy and honest. I definitely laughed on several occasions about her anecdotes.

230

 

26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2018?

Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur – I wept almost the entire time! One Day in December by Josie Silver also gave me a good cry. 

 

 

 

27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?

Magician: Apprentice by Raymond E. Feist. I never would’ve discovered this book (and the series) wasn’t it for the Popsugar reading challenge prompt “a book read by a stranger in public“. I am so happy I saw this stranger in November holding a well-loved copy of this book! I totally fell in love with Feist’s storytelling and writing. 

398

 

28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?

Milk and Honey – some of Rupi Kaur’s poems were just too real!

 

29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2018?

The Picses by Melissa Broder because who knew that I needed merman erotica in my life. 

118

 

30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?

Hands down The Love Interest by Cale Dietrich. What an awful, awful book! No one should read this ever! It was full of terrible stereotypes, the wrong kind of advice, and some of the worst science explanations I’ve ever read. Here is my blog review where I rant in detail why this book sucks!

125

 

book-blogging

1. New favorite book blog/Bookstagram/Youtube channel you discovered in 2018?

Book Roast on YouTube. I love her Harry Potter themed readathons!

 

2. Favorite post you wrote in 2018?

I feel like my most helpful blog post was one about signing up for Dewey’s readathon and how to prep for it. I’ve linked to it on several occasions across platforms and have gotten good feedback about its helpfulness. 

My personal favorites are the guest-posts I get to do during Dewey’s readathons. Here are just a few:

April warm-up post

April hour 10 and 11

Reverse readathon hour 16

October hour 16 and 17

And for good measure, and maybe my all time favorite, an homage to Dewey’s 10 year anniversary in 2017. 

 

3. Favorite bookish related photo you took in 2018?

I don’t really post a lot of photos online but I do love this one that I took during the April Dewey’s readathon. It combines two of my favorite things: coffee and books. Here you can see the opening line of Six of Crows – which is still one of my favorite openers ever. 

coffee and six of crows.jpg

 

4. Best bookish event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events,  etc.)?

All the damn readathons! See my blog for many, many mentions. 🙂

 

5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2018?

I am nearing 100 followers. I know that’s not a lot but it has taken me a long time to get my footing with this blog. I am super enjoying my TTT posts and the interactions I get there with other bloggers. I am hoping to break the 100 follower barrier in 2019. And I’d like nothing more than conversations with everyone about books here on my blog. 

 

6. Most challenging thing about blogging or your reading life this year?

Increasing my blogging footprint. I do really want to provide a fun, accepting, diverse, and informational platform for everything books. 

In part, I believe I need to be more active but I also still struggle with my blog layout. I do think a visually pleasing blog is the key! And I don’t feel I am there yet. 

 

7. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?

My most viewed post is the one on how to prep for Dewey’s readathon. I think my post with the most interactions (i.e. comments) is a TTT about my favorite reads of 2018.

 

8. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?

I don’t have a particular post. I am always looking for interactions. Generally, my monthly wrap-ups get the least love. 

 

9. Best bookish discovery (book related sites, bookstores, etc.)?

I’ve finally started ordering books from Powell’s – not sure what took me so long!

 

10.  Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?

I was able to complete all my goals for 2018. I had set a goal of 100 books for the year and surpassed that by 24. I also wanted to read and review 10 ARCs, read 25 books from my own shelf, and read 10 books from the 1001 book list. I surpassed all of these as well. Here is my breakdown. I was able to finish the advanced Popsugar reading challenge with my last book on December 31st at 10pm!

 

looking-ahead-books-2015

1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2018 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2019?

The Stand by Stephen King. I had slated this for several readathons and for the Popsugar reading challenge but just couldn’t get to it! This one is a must for 2019!

401.jpg

 

2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2019 (non-debut)?

The Winter of the Witch by Katherine Arden! I am dying to read the last book in this series. I can’t believe I had to wait sooooooooo long. If you haven’t read the first two books in the Winternight Trilogy, drop everything, and do that right now. 

402.jpg

 

3. 2019 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?

I can’t think of one. 

 

4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2019?

Like I said, The Winter of the Witch! January 8th cannot be here fast enough. 

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5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2019?

I want to break the 100 follower barrier. I want to interact with more book bloggers. And I want to work on my writing skills. 

 

6. A 2019 Release You’ve Already Read & Recommend To Everyone (if applicable):

I am currently ready Even If I Fall by Abigail Johnson. It comes out in the next few days. It’s a cute read so far but I can’t tell yet if it’s gonna be an impactful book.

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The Great American Read on PBS

Well, color me jealous! This looks like a fantastic series, and I might have to break my pledge to not watch that much TV this year for this show. And with I might, I of course mean I will! The Great American Read promises to be a reader’s delight and will definitely lead to more books being added to my TBR. The show is about the 100 of America’s best-loved novels and viewers can vote for their favorite which will be revealed in the last episode. Check out the show’s ABOUT page for more info and/or watch this video:

http://player.pbs.org/viralplayer/3008352988/

 

The book list seems well rounded to me and includes FOUR of my all-time favorites:

 

The Little Prince, The Alchemist, Little Women, and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. I am going to have to start thinking about for which I will cast my vote! Based on the theme of this blog, you can probably guess where I’ll end up.

So, set your reminders for May 22nd 8pm EST, to watch the premiere on PBS. Maybe we can chat about it during the show on Twitter. Find me @evilbibliotaph. I will be tweeting my thoughts.

Official monetary solicitation blog post :p

readathon-update

Hey there lovelies,

As you all know by now, cause I am telling everyone all the time, I am participating again in Dewey’s readathon. While I super-love (yes, that is a verb!) the idea of reading for 24 hours for reading’s sake, I love making sure that others have the chance to read even more. Thus, I decided to make this a little charity challenge, yet again. East Nashville Hope Exchange is once more my organization of choice. Their mission of reading for life, you know, just coincides with my mission, that is to say, they’re exactly the same.

The way I handled this in the past is that I personally donated a set amount per page that I read at the end of the readathon, and I would so darn appreciate it if you would do the same. Thus, I pledge to donate 10 cents again for every page I read. Please feel free to pledge any amount you choose (either a set amount or a per page amount) if you feel so inclined 🙂 – let’s use #ichleseblog and #deweysreadathon (in the comments section) with our donations here. Please let me know if you make a pledge so that I could keep a tally, you know, for data reasons.

My plan is to be sort of social-media-active with select tweets @evilbibliotaph, some chit-chat in the Facebook and Goodreads groups, as well as a few updates on here. I am also hosting a discussion during reading hour 10 in the Goodreads group and am currently trying to figure out the topic. Suggestions are of course welcome. My TBR is posted on the blog and I am hoping to adhere to it – I did put quite some thought into it so far. And if you haven’t checked it out, I wrote up a quick how-to for the readathon a few days ago.

Again, I’d like to thank everyone in advance who will help me in my fundraising efforts!

Happy reading and much <3!

I signed up for Dewey’s readathon, but what now?

So, I am officially signed up! And I cannot wait for the day to get here. I am already working on my reading list. But first I would like to give my two cents on how to prepare for this readathon as I’ve been asked by friends what to expect.

[If you haven’t signed up for Dewey’s readathon, do that here!]

 


  1. You completed step 1. You’re signed up! Woohoo!!!!!!! 🙂 Let’s see how you could prepare over the next few weeks.
  2. PRE-READATHON FUN. Check out what’s going on in their official Goodreads group and participate in some of their pre-readathon activities. The Dewey’s group is fun-tastic! There is a also wealth of information available to you on the discussion board.
  3. MY TBR. I generally start thinking about my list of reading options as soon as I remember that Dewey’s is coming up. Remember, this is a reading marathon, so slow and steady wins the race ;).
    1. I try to have a diverse selection: short stories, poetry, graphic novels as in between or light reads, a few fiction books that I am excited to read and generally one big tome just in case I am super motivated that day. Here is my ongoing and ever-changing list. As indicated, I generally overfill this list so I have options, options, options that day.
    2. Some participants choose to follow a theme like only female writers, sci-fi only, books with blue covers … . Honestly, whatever floats your boat is right.
  4. SNACKS! This is a biggie. I try to have lots and lots of snacks on hand. Healthy stuff and of course chocolate!
  5. COFFEE! This is a must for me and I get really excited that I can essentially have as much caffeine as I want as I am not planning on going to sleep at my normal time (or at all).
  6. OTHER DRINKS. Keep water ready. Or juice. Or tea. Anything that hydrates you.
  7. MY READING NOOK. Ahhhh, I love thinking about the comfy places I will read in. I try to move about throughout the day to keep it fresh I guess. I generally will spend some time at a coffee shop or outside during the day and at night I read in my favorite chair in my office or on the couch. The motto here is always: comfort. I will have PJs, blankets, pillows etc ready. I will arrange my snacks and drinks around me. I will light a candle. I am definitely setting the reading mood.
  8. SOCIAL MEDIA. Dewey’s is as much social media as you want. There are Instagram posts, Twitter challenges, Goodreads group discussions, and Facebook conversations. I tend to focus on Goodreads, Facebook, and my blog but will have the occasional tweet. I am less active on Instagram during the readathon. The first few readathons I would spend a lot more time on social media as I love, love, love interacting with like-minded individuals (and there are so many fun challenges throughout the day). The last few though, I have been donating money toward charities for each page I read and so my inner competitor didn’t want to “waste time”. Thus, I tend to schedule social media breaks every few hours. I also always host one hour in the Goodreads group and will use that time to write a longer blog post for example.
  9. TRACKING YOUR ACCOMPLISHMENTS. This is where my inner nerd shines! I track hourly progress in an excel sheet featuring books read, page count, breaks etc and will then analyze “my data” in a wrap-up blog post. Here is an example from a past readathon.
  10. STAYING MOTIVATED. Quite frankly, having fun, enjoying the reading process, and being mindful and in the present really is the most important part and the essence of Dewey’s readathon. We all love books but we have different amounts of time to dedicate to them throughout the year. These 24 hours are a way to conscientiously decide: this day belongs to books, to the written word, to me entering different worlds, and to me taking time to myself or time with my family/friends to read together. I stay motivated by thinking about the purpose of this readathon, by chatting with like-minded people, and by having a few of my close friends being reading buddies (we text each other, especially in the wee hours, to check in).

 

I know this seems really overwhelming and a fairly long list but remember: this day is what you want it to be. There are no requirements except for making time for some reading, even if it is only an hour or so. Don’t worry about finishing books or “competing” with others. This day is meant for you and for you alone!

Selecting the next book is hard

Hola book lovers,

I guess this is going to be a little ramble about how picking out your next book is hard. This is inspired by my recent discussion, with me, in my head, about the advantages and disadvantages of reading a series.

Goodreads’ book suggestions based on your shelves are usually quite decent and one of the reasons my TBR is steadily growing. However, lately, the suggestions I receive are all the first book in a series. Today I found myself exasperated and overwhelmed by this. “Why?”, you ask. The crux of the matter is that once you read the first book, you generally read the second etc. That second book however then takes the spot of some other book meaning I jump down the rabbit hole of one series in exchange for not reading other books. In and of itself, that’s not a bad thing, but basically, for every first book I add, I essentially add all sequels to my TBR as well. This is probably all caused by the fact that I like to read serial books in a row as not to forget what happened in the previous book.

The big advantage of a series is that you can follow a beloved character for much longer. You get to know more about them. You get to bond with them deeper. Characters become your companions and friends. BUT you also sort of miss out on other characters and their stories. I have so many damn good books on my to-read shelf at Goodreads that I don’t want to NOT read them soon. I honestly struggle with this quite a bit. Right now, I am leaning toward not starting any new series, however, there is a multitude of them that good friends and trusted reviewers have recommended. Plus, as I am writing this, I realize that I have THREE first books ready to be picked up from my local library. AHHHHH!

How do you guys handle this? Are you big fans of series? Do you prefer to read stand-alone novels? Is there an ideal way to do both?

Help! I need help!

Lewis Carroll birthday and Book Fairies shenanigans

Guys!!!!!

Lewis Carroll and Alice in Wonderland must be celebrated! The wonderful people at The Book Fairies are doing it in the best way possible. Let’s get our game on and hide copies of this beloved book all around the world!

I will be participating! Or at least I will try! I need to get myself a copy first I wouldn’t mind leaving somewhere 😉 but that shouldn’t be impossible. Gah, I wish I wouldn’t be so forgetful and had already done this!

Anyhow, if you so choose to participate post your book drop on social media using #bookfairiesinwonderland and #ibelieveinbookfairies.

This effort truly deserves six hearts ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ and six spades ♠♠♠♠♠♠.