R.I.P Wrap Up Post

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I love fall. I love Halloween. And I love the spooky, creepy, strange, macabre, so R.I.P is my kind of fun. The purpose of the R.I.P. Challenge is to enjoy books that could be classified as:

Mystery.
Suspense.
Thriller.
Dark Fantasy.
Gothic.
Horror.
Supernatural.

This year, I said I would read four books for the event, but I actually managed to squeak a few more in:

  1. Annihilation by Jeff Vandermeer
  2. A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab
  3. A Conjuring of Light by V.E. Schwab
  4. The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton
  5. A Study in Scarlet Women by Sherry Thomas
  6. A Conspiracy in Belgravia by Sherry Thomas
  7. The Hollow of Fear by Sherry Thomas

 

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I also said I would watch a movie to fit the challenge, but unfortunately I didn’t get a chance to watch a single movie this month! To be honest, tv shows are more my thing these days since I have such small chunks of free time.

I will say though that I hope to watch Last Year at Marienbad soon. I’ve seen it at least twice before and I teach it in Intro to Film, but I could do with a re-viewing.

 

50/50 Friday: Books with Black Covers

50/50 Friday is a weekly meme hosted by Carrie from The Butterfly Reader and Laura from Blue Eye Books.

Their Prompt: “Now what is 50/50 Friday?

Everyone has a favorite and then we also have something we dislike. Like a coin, there are two sides to every question. Example: best sequel you’ve read/worst sequel you’ve read. So that’s what 50/50 Friday is all about. We will have a new topic every Friday (something bookish of course!). If you have ideas for this meme don’t be scared to let us know!”
This Week’s Question: Favorite/Least Favorite Black Cover Design
My Answer: Go Ask Alice by Anonymous
goaskalice
I haven’t read this book since my early high school years – so we’re talking way back in the 90s – but I can still remember the feeling I had after reading this. Despair pretty much. I felt the same way after watching the movie Requiem for a Dream.
Erin Morgenstern’s The Night Circus is also a favorite for a completely different reason, so I’m including it too. Plus, I wasn’t sure if this really counted as a black cover.
thenightcircus
Now for my least favorite, here’s a book I have never read, but I truly despise the cover:
blackdahliaI mean, I really really don’t like the cover….

50/50 Friday: Chicago Baby

50/50 Friday is a weekly meme hosted by Carrie from The Butterfly Reader and Laura from Blue Eye Books.

Their Prompt: “Now what is 50/50 Friday?

Everyone has a favorite and then we also have something we dislike. Like a coin, there are two sides to every question. Example: best sequel you’ve read/worst sequel you’ve read. So that’s what 50/50 Friday is all about. We will have a new topic every Friday (something bookish of course!). If you have ideas for this meme don’t be scared to let us know!”
This Week’s Question: Favorite Book Set Where You Live/Another Place
My Answer: I live about 60 miles south of Chicago, and believe me, no books have been written set in my under 3000 population farming community. Chicago, on the other hand, has been the setting for quite a few stories.
Favorite:
Black and white portrait profile of young black man
Lorraine Hansberry’s play A Raisin in the Sun is such a wonderful and important play.
 

Least Favorite:
thejungle.pngI will admit that I could probably re-read this now that I’m an adult and have a quite different experience; however when I read it in my early twenties, this novel made the list of books I despise.

Sunday Post: Jury Duty

The Sunday Post hosted by the Caffeinated Reader is an opportunity to share with the blogging community what bookish things are happening in our world. So what have I been doing?

Reading | In one glorious day, I read hundreds of pages in V.E. Schwab’s A Conjuring of Light, the third in her Shades of Magic series. I rarely get to sit and read for uninterrupted hours, but as I had jury duty last Monday – an uneventful, we just stayed in the room all day jury duty – I was able to read and read and read. And I’ve never seen so many people reading in one place….not even a library.

bingewatchingWatching | You guys are probably tired of hearing it, but I’m still working through Stargate SG-1. It’s my second go-round with the show and I’m still loving it. I feel like I’ve made a sort of swap over the last ten years. I used to watch a dozen shows at a time and read only one book; now I tend to read multiple books simultaneously but only (binge)watch one show at a time.

Blogging |Last week, I posted reviews of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon and Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury. I also posted a 50/50 Friday on the best and worst novel set in a school which was fun.

Anticipating | My cousin Tara gets married this coming weekend, so the family and I are headed out to Iowa.

Loving | Madison got to bring home the macaw Malachi for the weekend and she was so excited. And of course, Carter was excited too. First order of business, make a mask of Malachi so we could all pretend to be him…

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I think Madison did a great job on the mask!

 

 

50/50 Friday: School Settings

50/50 Friday is a weekly meme hosted by Carrie from The Butterfly Reader and Laura from Blue Eye Books.

Their Prompt: “Now what is 50/50 Friday?

Everyone has a favorite and then we also have something we dislike. Like a coin, there are two sides to every question. Example: best sequel you’ve read/worst sequel you’ve read. So that’s what 50/50 Friday is all about. We will have a new topic every Friday (something bookish of course!). If you have ideas for this meme don’t be scared to let us know!”
This Week’s Question: Favorite/Least Favorite Book Set in a School
My Answer: Let’s be serious people, Harry Potter is most certainly the first series that came to mind for this question. Hogwarts is like the boss of all schools. eleanor & park by Rainbow Rowell also jumped into my head as did Stephen Chbosky’s the perks of being a wallflower, that Gail Carriger series, John Green’s Looking for Alaska, boy meets boy by David Levithan, The Absolutely True Story of a Part-time Indian by Sherman Alexie, Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card, and the list goes on and on and on. But my winner has to be:
Favorite:
themagicians
There is just something about Brakebills that both appeals and horrifies me.
Least Favorite:
neverletmego
While I realize many love this book, I was disturbed in a completely not good way. Worst school ever.

Sunday Post: The Long Month Recap

The Sunday Post hosted by the Caffeinated Reader is an opportunity to share with the blogging community what bookish things are happening in our world. So what have I been doing?

Doing | I’ve been on a month-long hiatus from blogging due to my two-week family reunion and then the start of the school year. In other words, I’ve been busy with a lot of this….

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Reading | I read a bit while on my fun-filled hiatus. I finally finished Susan Cain’s Quiet and loved it. The hilarious Abridged Classics: Brief Summaries of Books You Were Supposed to Read But Probably Didn’t was consumed in about 20 minutes. I finished V.E. Schwab’s A Darker Shade of Magic and then immediately began reading the second in the series. I’m working on that one now, and I have to say that I think this may be one of the best series I’ve read in years.

Watching | While I still throw on Shameless from time to time, I’ve been binge-watching Stargate SG-1…for like the third time in my life. I know, I know. Geek.

Listening |Revisionist History by Malcolm Gladwell and Lore by Aaron Mahnke are still my top two podcasts, but I have been listening to Aaron Mahnke’s Cabinet of Curiosities as well. While the first two are longer podcasts, approximately 30-60 minutes depending on the episode, the Cabinet tells two strange stories in about ten minutes. Great for when you just want a quick fix…like waiting in line, or on a day when the dreadmill just seems stupid…

Blogging |Since my last Sunday Post, reviews have gone up on the blog for Leigh Bardugo’s Grisha series, Kassy Taylor’s Ashes trilogy, the first part of The Wicked + The Divine graphic series, and Richelle Mead’s The Glittering Court. As I’ve been absent, I haven’t gotten to read any comments on these posts, but I promise I’m getting back in action now.

Anticipating | In the next month, the family heads to Iowa for my cousin’s wedding which I am really looking forward to.

Working | We are now two weeks into the semester, and I’m teaching three sections of Composition 2, Introduction to Literature, and Introduction to Film Study. So far my students seem awesome (to me, this means engaged and talking).

Loving | School has begun. Madison is in first grade and Carter started three-year-old preschool. *sniffsniff  It just seems like my babies are growing up so fast. Carter’s having a rough time in the morning drop off, crying because he wants me. But his teacher assures me that it lasts about two minutes and then he’s good to go. Luckily, the school is really good about sending parents pictures of what their kids are up to, so I get to see Carter having fun after I leave….and not crying in a corner, desolate and alone, feeling abandoned by everyone and suffering as I originally pictured through the tears in my eyes as I bawled in the parking lot after leaving him the first day.2018-08-17 07.27.38.jpg

So what have all of you been up to? I can’t wait to read the serious long backlog of blog posts I have saved in Feedly!!

 

 

 

50/50 Friday: Summertime

50/50 Friday is a weekly meme hosted by Carrie from The Butterfly Reader and Laura from Blue Eye Books.

Their Prompt: “Now what is 50/50 Friday?

Everyone has a favorite and then we also have something we dislike. Like a coin, there are two sides to every question. Example: best sequel you’ve read/worst sequel you’ve read. So that’s what 50/50 Friday is all about. We will have a new topic every Friday (something bookish of course!). If you have ideas for this meme don’t be scared to let us know!”
This Week’s Question: Favorite/Least Favorite Summery Book
My Answer: I don’t read many summery books if ‘summery’ is defined as light and airy and romancy. All of those books with white women in big hats lounging in the sand or in a pool or playing tennis or gardening…just not my cup of tea. So I thought of summery as quite simply being set in the summer.
The Favorite:
rebecca
Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
Monte Carlo holidays, roses and hydrangeas, boats, the ocean, definitely a summery read if a bit darker than the typical
The Least Favorite:
atonement
Atonement by Ian McEwan
oppressive heat, summer vacay from college, all goes to hell, another dark summer read but one that I did not even finish. I actually never got past the summer portion.

50/50 Friday: What Happened in July

50/50 Friday is a weekly meme hosted by Carrie from The Butterfly Reader and Laura from Blue Eye Books.

Their Prompt: “Now what is 50/50 Friday?

Everyone has a favorite and then we also have something we dislike. Like a coin, there are two sides to every question. Example: best sequel you’ve read/worst sequel you’ve read. So that’s what 50/50 Friday is all about. We will have a new topic every Friday (something bookish of course!). If you have ideas for this meme don’t be scared to let us know!”
This Week’s Question: Favorite/Least Favorite Read in July
My Answer: I finished 8 books in July-
  1. Shadows of Glass by Kassy Tayler
  2. Remnants of Tomorrow by Kassy Tayler
  3. Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
  4. Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo
  5. Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo
  6. Seraphina by Rachel Hartman
  7. Shadow Scale by Rachel Hartman
  8. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon

Clearly it was the month of series as I only read one standalone book this month. I’ve never been great at picking best reads, but this month, I have to go with:

curiousincident

The story is told from such a unique perspective and is just such a different read. For my least favorite read of the month:

shadowsofglassIt’s not that I hated it, but the main character spends an inordinate and annoying amount of time harping over her guilt – and practically using the same words to do so chapter after chapter.

So how about you guys? What were your favorite and leas favorite reads from July?