books & reading, tag

The Goodreads Book Tag.

I saw this Goodreads Book Tag over at A Book. A Thought and couldn’t resist playing along. I’ve been a Goodreads user since 2008 – that’s so long ago that I can’t quite remember not being a member (you can friend me here).

If you’ve never heard of them, it’s an online book community where you can keep a list of the books you are reading or want to read and connect with other book lovers and see what they are reading. They also have book giveaways, discussion groups, reading challenges and lots of other fun features.

Anyway, here is the book tag, all about your reading habits as viewed from your Goodreads.com Profile.


Copia de SPRINGTIME (2)


What was the last book you marked as ‘read’?

The Cozy Life: Rediscover the Joy of the Simple Things Through the Danish Concept of HyggeThe Cozy Life: Rediscover the Joy of the Simple Things Through the Danish Concept of Hygge by Pia Edberg

Great concept, kind of average book. I love the idea of hygge and enjoyed reading more about it but I found the book to be longer than it needed to be to get its point across. It almost could have existed as a short series of blog posts, but I did enjoy reading it and it was a short read, so I can’t complain too much. My rating: 3 of 5 stars

What are you ‘currently reading’?

currentlyreading

I actually have five books marked as ‘currently reading’ right now but I’ll be honest, I’m not actively reading all of them.

I was reading A Circle of Quiet by Madeline L’Engle last summer during swim lessons and the book is still in my beach bag waiting for pool-side reading time. I know I could have taken it out and kept reading it but I really enjoyed saving it as a book that only exists at the pool if that makes any sense.

My book club will be discussing The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson next month and I started reading it a couple of days ago because I anticipate it taking me awhile to get through. It’s nonfiction written in a more narrative style but his last book I still found a little “school history book” at times and struggled with. This one is better so far and the subject matter has me extremely intrigued so that will probably help.

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline and Roseblood by A.G. Howard are both books that I was basically halfway done with when I had to put them down for book club picks of previous months and for some reason I’ve had a hard time getting back into them now even though they are both very good books. I’m at a weird place with both of them in that I’m too far in to start over but it’s been long enough that the spell has worn off and I can’t just ease back in. We are at an impasse, you could say.

I’m not really reading A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallard yet – I opened it on my kindle today because I remembered I’d bought it on sale awhile back when I noticed a friend was reading it and I got excited and wanted to read the first few pages to decide if it should be my next read (answer: quite likely).

What was the last book you marked as ‘to read’?

26245850Before the Fall by Noah Hawley, it was one of the books from the Book of the Month Club awhile ago and while I didn’t choose it as “my book” – I was interested in possibly reading it at some point. Here’s a description of the book:

“On a foggy summer night, eleven people–ten privileged, one down-on-his-luck painter–depart Martha’s Vineyard headed for New York. Sixteen minutes later, the unthinkable happens: the passengers disappear into the ocean. The only survivors are Scott Burroughs–the painter–and a four-year-old boy, who is now the last remaining member of a wealthy and powerful media mogul’s family.”

Interesting to note, there are only 27 books in my “to-read” folder. I seem to use Amazon to organize my future reading goals / wish list and Goodreads to organize what I’m currently reading and what I finish / reviews of the books I read.

What book do you plan to read next?

27833670I’m hoping to get to at least one of the books I listed as “currently reading” that I haven’t finished yet, likely Roseblood or A Study in Charlotte. In May, my book club will be discussing Dark Matter by Blake Crouch, a kind of science fiction thriller about a man named Jason who wakes up to discover that his life is not the one he remembered as his own. “His wife is not his wife. His son was never born. And Jason is not an ordinary college physics professor, but a celebrated genius who has achieved something remarkable. Something impossible.” He has to figure out which world is the real one and what he can even do about it.

Do you use the star rating system?

Definitely, my average rating is 4.22. Most books that I really enjoy get a 4 star rating. Books I liked but found some flaws with get a 3. Books that I feel the need to squeal about to strangers get a 5. I think you can guess what books get a 2 or 1.

Are you doing a reading challenge?

Yes, I’ve been doing them for several years now. I’m a bookworm with limited reading time and tend to read around 20-30 books a year. I only challenged myself to 30 this year – I tried to shoot for 50 last year and didn’t come close. I much prefer setting goals that seem reachable and feeling way too proud of myself when I reach them. 30 will still be a push for me though as I average 2 books per month. I’ve read 5 books this years so far which puts me 2 books behind schedule.

Do you have a wishlist?

Not on goodreads, I keep my wish list on Amazon and I price watch it like a hawk because kindle editions are prone to popping up on sale for $1.99 all the time. It’s not often that it’s a book on my wish list, but it happens often enough that I’ve started saving all of the books I want under their kindle edition so I can quickly scan the list for big sales.

What book do you plan to buy next?

513pp8o3c2l-_sx354_bo1204203200_I don’t have any planned book purchases right now but the three that I’m probably most anxious for are actually all celeb memoirs that came out recently. I’m itching to read Carrie Fisher’s last book, The Princess Diarist. Lauren Graham and Anna Kendrick both wrote books recently as well that I’m eager to own a copy of. I also really want to get the graphic novel version of A Wrinkle in Time by Madeline L’Engle for the whole family.

Do you have any favorite quotes?

“You have to write the book that wants to be written. And if the book will be too difficult for grown-ups, then you write it for children.”
― Madeleine L’Engle

“Outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend. Inside of a dog it’s too dark to read.”
― Groucho Marx, The Essential Groucho: Writings For By And About Groucho Marx

“Her majesty is one verb short of a sentence.”
― Jasper Fforde, Lost in a Good Book

“I love deadlines. I love the whooshing noise they make as they go by.”
― Douglas Adams, The Salmon of Doubt

“I am so clever that sometimes I don’t understand a single word of what I am saying.”
― Oscar Wilde, The Happy Prince and Other Stories

“The opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference. The opposite of art is not ugliness, it’s indifference. The opposite of faith is not heresy, it’s indifference. And the opposite of life is not death, it’s indifference.”
― Elie Wiesel

“Never give us what we really want. Cut the dream into pieces and scatter them like ashes. Dole out the empty promises. Package our aspirations and sell them to us, cheaply made enough to fall apart.”
― Scott Westerfeld, So Yesterday

 

Who are your favorite authors?

My list of favorites on goodreads.com is kind of massive so I’m not going to share the whole thing. Some stand outs worth mentioning are (see the whole list here):

Marissa Meyer

Rainbow Rowell

Lisa Lutz

Jasper Fforde

 

Jane Austen

 

 

Stephanie Meyer

Scott Westerfeld

J.K. Rowling

Have you joined any groups?

I’m in 6 groups but I’m not terribly active in any of them if we’re going to be honest. Some of them were specific groups for an author I love, some are more open ended like the What Should I Read Next? group.

Do you think Goodreads could do better?

There’s always room for improvement. I wish they were slightly better integrated with Amazon – I’d love for all of my shelves on goodreads.com to appear on my kindle and vice versa. I’ve also found that sometimes the pages load pretty slowly compared to other websites. And I agree with A Book. A Thought. – half stars would be amazing!

Do you use goodreads? If you fill out the tag on your blog, let me know so I can check out your answers!

books & reading, tag

My Life in Books. a tag

Snagged this fun book tag from Birdie Bookworm, my new favorite tag supplier! 😉 I love when talking about myself and talking about books is combined, it’s basically a winning combination.


BOOK FOR EACH INITIAL

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These are all books I’ve read and loved.

 

J – Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

E – Eating for Beginners by Melanie Rehak

N – The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

N – Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen

I – The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde

F – Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

E – The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde

R – Revenge of the Spellmans by Lisa Lutz


AGE – COUNT ALONG YOUR BOOKSHELF

51rVYKLHHjL._SX307_BO1,204,203,200_34 – The 34th book on my bookshelf right now is The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger, a book I’ve owned forever but haven’t gotten around to reading yet because I’m ridiculous. I hear mixed things about this classic – have you read it?


BOOK THAT REPRESENTS A DESTINATION YOU WOULD LOVE TO TRAVEL TO

8683812The Paris Wife by Paula McLain gives me major wander lust. It wasn’t always an easy book to read (Hemingway was such a twat) but it definitely transported me. I’m every other stereotypical girl who dreams about Paris, but I also dream about London, Scotland, Sweden, Italy, Iceland, Japan, Australia… so. But Paris would be nice.


FAVORITE COLOR

My favorite color is kind of a teal blue / light blue. Coincidentally, some of my favorite books have been in this hue family.

IMG_20170323_143100


MOST DIFFICULTY READING

The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne is probably the one I complain about the loudest. Hawthorne could write an entire paragraph about a brick wall if you let him. I find that he is much better at writing short stories, in my humble opinion.


WHICH BOOK IN THE TBR PILE WILL YOU GET THE BIGGEST SENSE OF ACCOMPLISHMENT FROM?

There are so many books on my pile right now but two that I’ve had marked as “currently reading” for an inordinate amount of time are Roseblood by A.G. Howard and Ready Player One by Ernest Cline, both of which I was enjoying but had to put down for a book club pick and then never picked back up again because too much time had passed. It’s a little infuriating really. I’m too far in to start from the beginning but it’s been long enough that I can’t bring myself to just ease back into them.


Wanna play along? I’m not going to officially tag anyone but if this sounds fun to you, tag – you’re it! Let me know if you play along so I can come visit and read your answers.

meme, tag

Who Am I? tag

Totally ninja stealing this one from Kate @ Mom’s Radius because I never can resist an opportunity to talk about myself. If you play along, let me know in the comments section!

1. WHAT IS THE MEANING OF YOUR NAME?

According to Wikipedia, Jennifer is a Cornish form of Guinevere/Gwenhwyfar adopted into the English language during the 20th century. “Jennifer” may mean “white enchantress” or “the fair one”.

According to Urban Dictionary, Jennifer is a female name that people of America name their children. “Hey there is Jennifer over there. Lets name her Jennifer.

2. WHAT IS YOUR MYERS-BRIGGS PERSONALITY TYPE? (LINK)

INFP-I-DreamThe last time I took this quiz I got INFP, The Mediator.

Mediator personalities are true idealists, always looking for the hint of good in even the worst of people and events, searching for ways to make things better. While they may be perceived as calm, reserved, or even shy, Mediators have an inner flame and passion that can truly shine. Comprising just 4% of the population, the risk of feeling misunderstood is unfortunately high for the Mediator personality type – but when they find like-minded people to spend their time with, the harmony they feel will be a fountain of joy and inspiration.

Famous INFPs include William Shakespeare, Johnny Depp, Anne of Green Gables and Sybil from Downton Abbey.

3. WHAT IS YOUR ZODIAC SIGN?

70306ebfe9bccc9b7cd9379149776a6aThe Capricorn – The sign Capricorn is one of the most stable and (mostly) serious of the zodiacal types. These independent, rocklike characters have many sterling qualities. They are normally confident, strong willed and calm. These hardworking, unemotional, shrewd, practical, responsible, persevering, and cautious to the extreme persons, are capable of persisting for as long as is necessary to accomplish a goal they have set for themselves. Capricorn are reliable workers in almost any profession they undertake. They are the major finishers of most projects started by the ‘pioneering’ signs; with firm stick-to-it-ness they quickly become the backbone of any company they work for. (source)

I don’t know about unemotional and shrewd, but definitely hardworking, practical and responsible. I think a lot of those traits can be better explained by being an only child though.

4. WHAT HOGWARTS HOUSE WOULD YOU BE IN? (LINK)

PrintHUFFLEPUFF! 84%
Congratulations! You have been sorted into Hufflepuff, the house of loyalty, hard working, acceptance, and fairness. You are amongst other Hufflepuffs such as: Tonks and Cedric Diggory
I honestly expected to get Ravenclaw but I’ll totally accept Hufflepuff. I guess my loyalty and patience were stronger than my bookworm tendencies today.

5. WHAT ARE YOUR LEARNING STYLES? (LINK)

  • Visual 7
  • Aural 10
  • Read/Write 11
  • Kinesthetic 12

I actually scored fairly high in all areas, but especially kinesthetic  and reading / writing.

6. ARE YOU MORE OF A LEFT-BRAIN OR A RIGHT-BRAIN PERSON? (LINK)

rightbrained7. WHAT IS YOUR BLOOD TYPE?

Is it terrible that I don’t know? A or B?

8. WHAT CAREER ARE YOU MEANT TO BE IN? (LINK)

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You have a skill for language, your imagination is vast and you are artistic and creative. Your brain is just overflowing with ideas, and all you have to do is get a piece of paper and share it with the world. You were born to turn words into magical stories.

Well that seems fitting. I think I’d be a better writer though if I had a tangible boss and, like, deadlines. Because left to my own devices I’d just write in my blog and watch Netflix.

9. WHAT DIVERGENT FACTION DO YOU BELONG IN? (LINK)

6b53d3fbfdc2a9399cba254b52564593
ERUDITE“The word “erudite” focuses on knowledge rather than intelligence– intelligence being something you’re born with, and can’t necessarily control, and knowledge being something that you acquire. (source)

10. WHAT DOES YOUR BIRTH ORDER SAY ABOUT YOU? (LINK)

The Firstborn

Stereotype: Natural leader, ambitious, responsible.
Why it’s true: The eldest, for a while, has no competition for time (or books or baby banter) with Mom and Dad. “There’s a benefit to all of that undiluted attention. A 2007 study in Norway showed that firstborns had two to three more IQ points than the next child,” says Frank J. Sulloway, Ph.D., the author of Born to Rebel. Firstborns tend to be surrogate parents when other siblings arrive, hence their protective and responsible nature.
When it’s not: Parents can set high expectations for a first (or only) child. “When he feels like he has disappointed his parents or can’t measure up, he may veer off in another direction,” says Kevin Leman, Ph.D., a psychologist and the author of The Birth Order Book.

So who are you?

family fun, mama kat's writers workshop, tag

So Very Thankful.

Rustic table setting in brown tone

I’m linking up with Mama Kat again for her pretty much world famous Writer’s Workshop. One of the prompts this week was to answer the questions for this So Very Thankful tag. I’m feeling kind of brain mushy today so a tag is perfect and what better post to write for Thanksgiving than a list of things I am thankful for! So.

1. Name a color you are thankful for. I am thankful for many colors for many reasons but the beautiful teal / aqua blue color tends to add a pop of something to some of my favorite things. And apparently a lot of the women in my family are digging on this color, so my good taste is in good company.
2. Something your spouse does that you are thankful for. Guys, my husband is basically the best thing ever and I’d be a hot mess without him. He knows literally everything, always makes me think harder than I’d normally do on my own so he’s making me smarter. He is the one who remembers when the water filter needs to be changed or the smoke detectors need new batteries. He knows how to clean all of our pots and pans and cookie sheets without ruining them and he’s tall and can reach things that are up high (even if they are out of reach because he put them there). And he’s super cute.
12705333_975640859151258_9213405653163498357_n3. Something your kids do that you are thankful for. Don’t be afraid to put your kids to work. Apparently I’ve become a master delegater since having children and I love it. My kids make their own breakfast, pack their own lunch, take care of most of the dog’s trips to the bathroom and feed him breakfast and dinner. I could go on, but eventually you’ll start asking yourself what exactly I do and nobody wants that.
4. A food you are thankful for. Chopped salads – they brought me back to salads when I was pretty much done with them. It turns out I don’t mind most veggies, I just need some crunch and substance to my veggies. Munching on giant leaves does nothing for me.
5. What recent good news are you thankful for? Let’s talk about news tomorrow.
6. Name a drink you are thankful for. I don’t think anyone would take my seriously if I didn’t say coffee, but I’ll add lactose free milk alternatives as the amazing thing that lets me keep drinking said coffee.
7. Name a restaurant you are thankful for. I’m writing this in the past but I’ll say I’m thankful for whichever restaurant ends up feeding us Thanksgiving dinner this year – actual restaurant to be determined. I’ll try to remember to update you guys later about who provides me with cranberry sauce and pie this year.
8. Talk about an animal you are thankful for. I’m probably supposed to name my dog here but I’ve got to be honest, he should be thankful for my extreme patience / glutton for punishment tendencies.
22734629. Name a beauty product you are thankful for. I’m thankful for the magical brush that doesn’t snag my daughter’s hair as much as most brushes so that we’re finally able to brush her rat’s nest mane of hair. Snaps to the Detangler from Ulta Beauty.
10. Name a cleaning product you are thankful for. Laundry soap pods because they are so easy to use that my seven year old can do the laundry now. Like I said, master delegater.
11. What social media platform are you thankful for? So I most enjoy using Instagram because ohhhh pretty pictures and yay for basically zero drama or stress in a social media platform, but Facebook boasts it’s track record for helping me stay connected to friends and family that live far away so I guess it still wins even though I frequently need to take cleansing breaks from it (particularly during elections).
12. Tell us why you are thankful for the last person who texted you. That would be my friend Abby who pretty much keeps me sane and has become my partner in crime these last couple years. Our kids are all friends, our husbands get along, and we can be messy less than perfect weirdos and still seem to want to hang out together any chance we get. That’s hard to find in this world.
nama-aulait_grande13. Name a candy you are thankful for. I don’t know whether to be thankful for Royce chocolates or despondent that it has kind of ruined other chocolates for me and has the audacity to be so difficult to come by. When I tried their Nama line in Vegas this summer it was like the ultimate bliss in chocolate form. I haven’t been the same since.
14. Name an app on your phone that you are thankful for. I just started using Habitica and I’m kind of loving it. It turns goal setting into a game where you get points for doing all the stuff you keep trying to do like exercise more or meditate or drink more water or check all those things off your to do list. It’s honor based and relatively open ended but you wouldn’t believe how many times I get dressed up cute or empty the dishwasher before bed mostly for the experience points. Whatever works, right?
15. What are you looking forward to that you are thankful for? We finally broke down and replaced our refrigerator because manually defrosting it every month was starting to get old (and be starting to, I mean…). I’m thankful that our new fridge is getting delivered on Friday.

What things are you thankful for? Feel free to share your answers in the comments section or send me a link to your blog’s responses. Happy Turkey Day guys!

books, meme, tag

The Mid Year Book Tag 2016

I’m stealing this book tag from Mom’s Radius because I just got back into town after a long vacation and my brain is too fragged to think of something extraordinary to write about. A mid year review seemed like just the ticket. Steal in kind if you are feeling the same need.

1. Best Book You’ve Read So Far In 2016

Winter41VgvI2digL._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_ by Marissa Meyer – This was such a satisfying end to an amazing series that seriously took over my life for awhile! I think Meyer did an amazing job of weaving all these tales together into one cohesive plot that never disappointed. This book felt like the fireworks finale that it should be with #allthefeels all over the place. Every moment you were waiting for finally happens and Meyer only tries to break your heart eleventy billion times so it’s all good.

2. Best Sequel You’ve Read So Far In 2016

26074213The Last Little Blue Envelope by Maureen Johnson– I was surprised to find that I actually enjoyed this book more than the first one. Something in the writing felt fresher and tighter and it probably helps that I’d grown accustomed to the cast of characters. I also really loved Oliver – probably more than I’d liked Keith in book one.

3. New Release You Haven’t Read Yet But Want To

615s-d3gm7L._SY346_Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by JK Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany – The internet kind of exploded when this title came out (hell, it exploded when it was first whispered about) and the reviews have been mixed. My husband wrote it off immediately after realizing it’s the written screenplay and not in novel form, and I’ve heard some reviews that it just isn’t up to Rowling par. But… I’m so jonsing for a Potter fix that I’m likely to read it anyway, I’m just waiting for the right moment / price.

4. Most Anticipated Release For The Second Half Of The Year

heartlessHonestly there are a few, but I think Heartless by Marissa Meyer is probably at the top of my list because I’m still riding the Lunar Chronicles wave, you know? November is feeling so far away. I’m also looking forward to books by Amy Schumer and Anna Kendrick.

5. Biggest Disappointment

13449693I thought I was going to love The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater a lot more than I did. This was probably an instance of hype ruining a good thing, I might have had lower expectations if the bookstagram universe weren’t loving it so hard. Something about the book just never let me settle into it desp

ite being intrigued by the premise.

6. Biggest Surprise

18770398I read a murder mystery horror story of sorts and loved it.  Night Film by Marisha Pessl is such a departure from the types of books I normally read and there were definitely times I thought, “This book is too dark for me, I should walk away,” but because it was a book club pick, I soldiered on and I’m glad I did. Somewhere around the middle the plot really picks up and the last 150 pages I read in basically one day. I found the overall story to be really fascinating and the pictures and clippings were a nice touch. I was kind of disappointed that the google play app at least doesn’t seem to exist anymore. Unless Cordova got to it.

7. Favorite New Author

18079710Richelle Mead is a recent new fave. I read The Vampire Academy in like two sittings despite having seen the movie like a year ago. This is unheard of guys. Seeing the movie before reading the book is a rookie move that never works in my favor but I could not put it down! I also really enjoyed reading books by Kathleen Ernst, Maureen Johnson and Heather Cocks this year.

8. Newest Fictional Crush

Dimitri from The Vampire Academy is definitely up there and certainly qualifies as most recent.

9. Newest Favorite Character

22840421I’m reading My Lady Jane by coauthors Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows right now and I love Jane and Edward and really everyone. It’s such a funny book and so cleverly written. It’s kind of historical fiction but the original premise has been entirely turned on its head to the point of being unrecognizable in all the best ways.

10. Book That Made You Cry

I’m honestly not sure. I feel like I must have cried at some point reading several but I don’t remember any specific scenes. Likely contenders include The Royal We by Heather Cocks, Winter by Marissa Meyer or maybe Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld because Pride and Prejudice always gets to me.

11. Book That Made You Happy

41C+ffCh5dL._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling because she is so funny, she always makes me laugh. I think I liked this book even more than the original. It was funny, informative, dishy and inspiring jut like Mindy. I’m a sucker for these celeb memoir humor books but this one was really, really good.

12. Favorite Book To Movie Adaptation You Saw This Year

26067879I saw Me Before You by Jojo Moyes and it was allllllllll the things. Talk about making a girl ugly cry, the plot is just heart breaking but the casting was brilliant and everybody was on point. Of course when you bring the Mother of Dragons onto your set, you know it’s going to be good.

13. Favorite Review/Post You’ve Done This Year

booksuggestionstweenI wrote a list of book suggestions for your reluctant tween reader and I enjoyed it so much that I wrote another list of book suggestions for 10 year old boys. Being a huge book nerd who worked in a book store for several years and spends an inordinate amount of time talking about books and recommending books to friends, these posts were kind of an excuse to just delve into my recommendations and keep digging without worrying that my friend is going to implode trying to retain all the suggestions.

14. Most Beautiful Book You’ve Bought So Far This Year

51MIi4p2YyL._SX418_BO1,204,203,200_I’ve indulged in some beautiful hardcovers this year like Eligible, The Girls or Rich and Pretty, but the Illustrated Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone is just stunning and continues to be stunning page after page after page. It really enhances the read aloud quality of the book as well.

15. Books You NEED To Read By The End Of 2016

I still haven’t read The Girls or Rich and Pretty because you know, so many books so little time. I’d also really like to read After You, the sequel by Jojo Moyes and of course the other eleven hundred books on my bookshelves upstairs (not to mention my kindle). I’m going to refrain from making a thorough list because it will give me a migraine but really I just want to dig into my stacks a little more and thin the herd.

What is the best book you have read so far this year?

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