Top Ten Tuesday: Reading Resolutions

Top Ten Tuesday

Welcome to another contribution to the wildly popular Top Ten Tuesday hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.  This week she asks us to share lists on the following:

January 16: Bookish Resolutions/Goals

I’ve long given up trying to direct my reading life.  I’m simply a mood reader and when I put rules or expectations on my reading I simply end up stressed.  Reading should be fun and too many rules or goals squashes my reading pleasure.  Still, for participation purposes, I will try to come up with ten resolutions for my reading in 2018.

Ten Bookish Resolutions for 2018

  1. YouTube:  For the love of God step away from YouTube.  It is nothing but a huge time suck and I waste far too much time watching mindless, yet entertaining, vlogs.  I also watch the news but outside of those two hours a day I need to seriously put a block on that site.
  2. Goodreads Goal:  I hope to read ten more books than last year.  So even though I set my Goodreads goal at 52 I hope to actually read something like 98 books in total.
  3. Audiobooks: I want to continue to listen to audiobooks this year.  I do want to change my focus as far as audiobooks go and use it as a way to reread titles I have already enjoyed.
  4. Star Trek:  I have a tough time passing up Star Trek books when I find them while thrifting.  I have quite the collection built up and they are beginning to creep onto other shelves on my to-read bookcase.
  5. Weed More:  I would like to weed some of the titles I don’t plan to read anymore on my to-read shelves (physical and virtual).  I would also love to get my husband into our home library to go through his collection of titles.
  6. Use the Library More:  I work at a public library and haven’t checked out that many books over the past year instead focusing on reading titles I have at home.  I should try to borrow more books from my public library.
  7. Read more Non-Fiction:  I do occasionally read titles that are NF but not that often.  Maybe I should use that library card to find some NF titles that interest me.
  8.  Catch up on Series:  I have so many series that I follow and have fallen behind with.  I need to either own up and abandon them or get my butt in gear and read the titles that are already released.
  9. New Authors:  I’ve not been seeking out new authors to try and should.  Maybe once I month I could try to read a book by someone I’ve not read before.
  10. Get new glasses:  I’ve been blaming my decline in reading on needing bifocals for about two years now.  I need to make a freaking eye appointment and just get a pair of reading glasses already.

There is my list for this week what reading goals or resolutions do you have for 2018?

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Fifth Grave Past the Light by Darynda Jones (Reread)

Book Review

 


Fifth Grave Past the Light (Charley Davidson, #5)Book Genre: Paranormal, Romance, Mystery, Urban Fantasy, Audiobook

Book Series: Charley Davidson #5

Released: 7/9/2013

Pages: 339  Price: $39.99 Audiobook

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library

 

 

Book Synopsis:

Charley Davidson isn’t your everyday, run-of-the-mill grim reaper. She’s more of a paranormal private eye/grim reaper extraordinaire. However, she gets sidetracked when the sexy, sultry son of Satan, Reyes Farrow, moves in next door. To further complicate matters, Reyes is her main suspect in an arson case. Charley has vowed to stay away from him until she can find out the truth…but then dead women start appearing in her apartment, one after another, each lost, confused, and terrified beyond reason. When it becomes apparent that her own sister, Gemma is the serial killer’s next target, Charley has no choice but to ask for Reyes’s help. Arsonist or not, he’s the one man alive who could protect Gemma no matter who or what came at her. But he wants something in return. Charley. All of her, body and soul. And to keep her sister safe, it is a price she is willing to pay.
Charley Davidson is at it again in the sexy, suspenseful, and laugh-out-loud funny fifth installment of the New York Timesbest selling series.

My Review:

Oy,  I had forgotten some of the truly gruesome things that happen to Charley over the years.  Here I thought listening to the graphic sex scenes was awkward, listening to a character being tortured is just as challenging.  Otherwise, I continue to enjoy this reread listen to one of my favorite series.

I continue to be surprised by how much I don’t remember from the earlier books.  I think once we get to book ten, eleven, and twelve I will be more familiar with what is going on as they are more recent releases.  I also continue to focus on subplots more than I did the first go around as I already know how Charley and Reyes’s relationship is going to play out.  While I love Charley and Reyes other characters are quickly becoming almost equal in my adoration.  Uncle Bob in this book especially tugged at my heart.

I have one more book downloaded and then I have to wait for my turn at book 7 which might be a nice spot to take a breather for a book or two.   It is going to be a long time to wait until Fall 2018 for the last book so there is no hurry.  This is such a great series I highly recommend it for whatever format you can get your hands on.  A smoking hot male love interest, humor that has you laughing in public, and touching moments that leave you in tears.  This series has it all.

My Rating: 5 Stars

Monday Morning Check-In: Arctic Blast

Good Monday morning everyone.  Like many other spots in the US we are experiencing another arctic blast here in Iowa so today I’m going to be hibernating in my living room under a thick blanket and wearing about two layers as I knit and listen to my audiobook.  This blast feels worse than the one we had in the new year that froze the pipes and car up but it is probably just the wind making everything so miserable.  I’ve already spent far too much time on YouTube today so this afternoon I hope to stay off the computer and work on projects or read.  I have managed to get into my current review book but have been a bit distracted with the Charley Davidson series to make much progress.  I’m almost done with book five and have book six already downloaded so maybe after I finish those I can finish up the review title.  If you follow me on Instagram you know that I’ve already broken my book buying ban for the year when I couldn’t pass up the latest release by J.R. Ward.  Of course, I need to read last year’s book The Chosen, to avoid spoilers, before I can dive into the latest from the spin-off series.

Well, I’ll leave you here and hopefully I’ll finish a book this afternoon and can bring you a review.  Have a great week everyone!

Fourth Grave Beneath My Feet by Darynda Jones (Reread)

Book Review


Fourth Grave Beneath My Feet (Charley Davidson, #4)Book Genre: Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy, Mystery, Audiobook

Book Series: Charley Davidson #4

Released: 10/30/12 by St. Martin’s Press

Pages: 308 Price: Audiobook $39.99

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library

 

 

Book Synopsis:

Sometimes being the grim reaper really is, well, grim. And since Charley’s last case went so awry, she has taken a couple of months off to wallow in the wonders of self-pity. But when a woman shows up on her doorstep convinced someone is trying to kill her, Charley has to force herself to rise above…or at least get dressed. It becomes clear something is amiss when everyone the woman knows swears she’s insane. But the more they refute the woman’s story, the more Charley believes it.
In the meantime, the sexy, sultry son of Satan, Reyes Farrow, is out of prison and out of Charley’s life, as per her wishes and several perfectly timed death threats. But his absence has put a serious crimp in her sex life. While there are other things to consider, like the fact that the city of Albuquerque has been taken hostage by an arsonist, Charley is having a difficult time staying away. Especially when it looks like Reyes may be involved.
Just when life was returning to normal, Charley is thrust back into the world of crime, punishment, and the devil in blue jeans in this hilarious fourth installment in the New York Times bestselling series.

My Review:

Continuing to enjoy my reread listen to the Charley Davidson series.  Also getting a ton of knitting done because all I want to do is sit and listen and laugh.  Of course, there are plenty of moments that have me in tears and blushing at what is being read to me.  These books are definitely not safe for work or commute in public transit without headphones.

Book four brought me quite a few surprises which shocked me in how much I did not remember.  There were one or two scenes in there that I had completely forgotten.  I remember zipping right through this series when I read it the first time so perhaps I should reread more of the book I finished in a day because in my rush to read them I missed a lot apparently.

Listening to this book and the last one so close together made me realize there is a bit of a plot hole with a character that had died in the previous book.  I could have sworn he was dead-dead but he ended up showing up again in this book.  There was a little explanation as to what happened but it felt a little fishy. Will need to go and read other’s reviews about this character and see if anyone else feels the same.  Don’t get me wrong I’m happy they are still in the book it is just something feels off about what happened.

I have plenty of knitting to go, knitting a blanket for my husband, and plenty of books to go! Was a little disappointed that there was no author interview at the end of this book but I guess I can look some up on YouTube if I want to hear more of what Ms. Jones has to say about the series…

My Rating: 5 Stars

Third Grave Dead Ahead by Darynda Jones (Reread)

Book Review

 


Third Grave Dead Ahead (Charley Davidson, #3)Book Genre: Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy, Audiobook, Mystery

Book Series: Charley Davidson #3

Released: 1/31/12 by St. Martian’s Press

Pages: 310  Price: $39.99 Audiobook

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library

 

 

Book Synopsis:

Paranormal private eye. Grim reaper extraordinaire. Whatever. Charley Davidson is back! And she’s drinking copious amounts of caffeine to stay awake because, every time she closes her eyes, she sees him: Reyes Farrow, the part-human, part-supermodel son of Satan. Yes, she did imprison him for all eternity, but come on. How is she supposed to solve a missing persons case, deal with an ego-driven doctor, calm her curmudgeonly dad, and take on a motorcycle gang hellbent on murder when the devil’s son just won’t give up?

My Review:

Wow.  I’m surprised at how much I did not remember in this book.  Near the end, I was totally all ‘Wait a minute, what the hell just happen?!?’.  It is a good thing I have the next audiobook all downloaded and waiting because if I had to wait my turn for the next book I might have a fit.

This reread continues to be a delight to listen to and if you are a fan of the series I highly suggest getting your hands on the audiobooks.  There was another author interview at the end of this book and to gain that insight into Ms. Jones’s development of the characters and plot is so worth it.

I really don’t want to give anything away but Garrett’s storyline really tugs on the heart in this book.  We also meet Artemis in this book which was both sad and fun.  Again there are characters here that have dropped out of the plot by book 12 that I’m having a difficult time remembering their importance.  I am also surprised at how little Reyes and Charlies’s relationship is grabbing my attention.  I know how most of that plays out, having read the series already, and I am able to focus on some of the other characters more.  Don’t get me wrong I still like Reyes but I feel like I am able to enjoy some of the supporting roles more now.

My Rating: 5 Stars (No Change)

Top Ten Tuesday: Meant to read…

Top Ten Tuesday

Welcome to another contribution to the wildly popular Top Ten Tuesday hosted by The Broke and The Bookish.  This week they ask us to share lists on the following:

January 9: Ten Books We Meant To Read In 2017 But Didn’t Get To (and totallyyyy plan to get to in 2018!!)

I’m not much of a planner when it comes to reading the past couple years preferring to read whatever I’m in the mood for.  Still, there are always some titles that we mean to pick up over the course of a reading year.  Here are some titles that I either meant to read or thought I might try but didn’t pick up for some reason.

Ten books that I didn’t read in 2017

  1. Blade of Darkness (Immortal Guardians, #7)  This one I started before coming down with the plague in early December but didn’t get very far into it.  I hope to give it a better chance this January.
  2. Dragonsworn (Dark-Hunter, #28) This is a case of I bought the book when it came out and needed to read the one before then wasn’t too impressed with that book and decided to put off this title…
  3. Deadmen Walking (Deadman's Cross, #1)  I was so excited about a new series by my favorite author but when I got my hands on it I learned that it was a historical and I have been hesitant to actually start it fearing bitter disappointment.
  4. The Chosen (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #15) This series is one I still enjoy despite the fact that I never get around to reading the latest release the year it comes out.  I should really stop buying them release week and wait until I’m ready to read them and picking them up secondhand or discounted.
  5. Born of Vengeance (The League, #10) See number 2 for the reason why I’ve not read this book yet…
  6. Dead Eye (Tiger's Eye Mystery, #1) This is a review book I picked up on Net Galley.  I had wanted to read it before Christmas but again I got sick and didn’t get much reading done.
  7. Envy of Angels (Sin du Jour, #1) This is a free download that I was offered in a newsletter.  It looked interesting and I did try to start it but quickly lost interest.  This one I might not get around to anytime soon.
  8. The End of All Things (Old Man's War, #6) This series was one I read around the time of my hysterectomy last year.  Got to this book and needed a break.  Haven’t gotten around to finishing the last two books.
  9. The Great Suppression: Voting Rights, Corporate Cash, and the Conservative Assault on Democracy I requested this book through Blogging for Books and couldn’t get into it.  I still want to give it try but seem to be in no hurry.
  10. Black Night (Black Wings, #2) I read the first book in this series in hope that I would find a new series to enjoy.  while the first book was okay it just didn’t grab me.  I do have the others and hope to get to them eventually.

Another week, another list.  What books did you mean to read last year?

Monday Morning Check-In: Thawing Out

Good Monday morning everyone.  It is a balmy 34 degrees outside and I spent part of the morning just enjoying the warmer temps.  Like my birds and barn cats, I have a slight case of cabin fever and decided it was so nice this morning that I would scoop out some of the paths that blew shut with snow.  Quite frankly it was just nice to be outside in the sun without a couple of layers of winter gear.

Reading wise I’ve been into my audio reread of the Charley Davidson series which I listen to while knitting.  I have two print books that I need to give a serious effort towards but I have a feeling I’m going to be heavy into audiobooks this month again.  Nothing wrong with that but it still feels like cheating…

Well, I have another blog post to write-up on a different blog so I’m going to leave it here for now.  Have a great week everyone.

Second Grave on the Left by Darynda Jones (reread)

Book Review

 


Second Grave on the Left (Charley Davidson, #2)Book Genre: Paranormal, Romance, Mystery, Urban Fantasy, Audiobook

Book Series: Charley Davidson #2

Released: 8/16/2011 by St. Martian’s Press

Pages: 307 Price: $39.99 Audiobook

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library

 

 

Book Synopsis:

If you hang around with dead people, life can get pretty complicated. Take it from Charley Davidson, part-time private investigator and full-time Grim Reaper. Complicated is her middle name. The deceased find her very sparkly. Demons find her irresistible. And one entity in particular wants to seduce her in every way possible.
When Charley and Cookie (her best friend/receptionist) have to track down a missing woman, the case is not quite as open and shut as they anticipate. Cookie’s friend Mimi disappeared five days earlier. Mimi then sends Cookie a cryptic message telling Cookie to meet her at an nearby coffee shop. The coffee is brewing, but Mimi’s still missing. There is, however, a clue Mimi left on the bathroom wall: a woman’s name. Mimi’s husband explains to them that his wife had been acting strange since she found out an old high school friend had been murdered. The same woman whose name Mimi had scribbled on the bathroom wall.
Meanwhile, Reyes Alexander Farrow (otherwise known as the Son of Satan. Yes. Literally) has left his corporeal body and is haunting Charley. He’s left his body because he’s being tortured by demons who want to lure Charley closer. But Reyes can’t let that happen. Because if the demons get to Charley, they’ll have a portal to heaven…well, let’s just say it wouldn’t be pretty.
Can Charley handle hot nights with Reyes and even hotter days tracking down a missing woman? Can she keep those she loves out of harm’s way? And is there enough coffee and chocolate in the world to fuel her as she does?

My Review:

I decided to continue with my reread listen of the Charley Davidson Series when I found the next three books available through my library.  It is also way cold outside and I’m stuck at home babysitting running water pipes so they don’t freeze.  Throw in a new knitting project and you have the perfect winter afternoon activity.

I continued to enjoy book two and stand by the initial review of the title.  Of course, there isn’t anything like reading a great story for the first time but I do think that this reread is worthwhile if nothing else it is a great refresher for the upcoming last book releasing later this year.  I am surprised at how much I do remember because nothing was a big surprise as I know what the mysteries being solved in this title are already.  The cliffhanger at the end, however, is significantly less annoying when you know what is going to happen next.

There were some characters that have kind of fallen away in later books like Reyes high school friend.  I will need to pay attention in the next book to see what happened to him and his family.  I continue to enjoy the narrator of this book and appreciate how she alters her accent for each of the characters.  A bonus at the end of this audiobook is an author interview with Ms. Jones which was way fun and I highly recommend borrowing a copy of this book simply to listen to that.

I didn’t really notice anything I missed in my first read but I was working out a new blanket pattern and might have missed some while working.  It is both frustrating and interesting to be with Charley back at the beginning of her journey.  I’m torn between wanting to get to the good stuff and wanting to savor the ride.  I have two more books on deck and then might take a break for a title or two.  We will see I have almost a whole year to get through 12 books so there is no hurry.

My Rating: 5 Stars (Unchanged)

Top Ten Tuesday: New (To Me) Authors 2017

Top Ten Tuesday

Welcome to another contribution to the wildly popular Top Ten Tuesday hosted by The Broke and The Bookish.  This week they ask us to share lists on the following:

 January 2: Top Ten New-To-Me Authors I Read In 2017

I was surprised at how many new authors I managed to try this year.  I just gave up all pretense of trying to venture outside of my reading comfort zone and thought I had stuck to my tried and true.  Some of these I enjoyed more than others but all of the books below are by authors I’ve never tried before.

Ten authors, I tried for the first time in 2017.

  1. Bottomland  Michelle Hoover: This author was the All Iowa Reads book for 2017 and probably the best one I’ve read in all the years our library has participated.  I don’t think I will be checking out other titles by her though, as she is still pretty far out of my typical book selection.
  2. Saturn Run John Sandford and Ctein: This was an audiobook that I downloaded from my library on a whim.  I enjoyed it and should look into what other titles either of these authors have published.
  3. Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore (Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore, #1) Robin Sloan:  Another library audiobook that I liked and another one that I should check out their other work.
  4. The Space Between the Stars Anne Corlett:  This was a debut novel by this author that I absolutely loved.  Can’t wait to see what else she writes.
  5. How to Speak Chicken: Why Your Chickens Do What They Do & Say What They Say Melissa Caughey:  This was a super fun book that actually had tons of useful information.  If you have your own flock I would check it out.
  6. Reincarnation Blues Michael Poore:  A review request book by an author I’ve never tried before.  Those are getting few and far between but worked out great for this book!
  7. Blood Song (Raven's Shadow, #1) Anthony Ryan:  This was an audiobook that I borrowed from my library and while it took me a bit to get into I enjoyed it quite a bit by the end.  Was disappointed to see the library didn’t have the rest of the trilogy in audio format.
  8. The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet (Wayfarers, #1) Becky Chambers:  This was an author that I suggested to my library for addition to the catalog sometime in 2016.  Yep, it took me a long time to get around to reading it myself…  Such a good book though!
  9. The Queen of the Tearling (The Queen of the Tearling, #1) Erika Johansen:  This was an audiobook that I recently finished and immediately put book two and three on hold.  Can’t believe I didn’t try it sooner.
  10. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry Neil deGrasse Tyson: Another audiobook whim where I was in the mood to try something NF for a change.  This was thoroughly enjoyable and didn’t make me feel too dumb.  Yay, science.

There is my list for the week.  What new author did you discover last year?

Bookish Thoughts

 

Is it just me or does something look different?  You are correct I’ve decided to update Read What I Like.  WordPress has been nagging me for a year saying that my theme had been discontinued and replaced with a new one, Toujours (if you like it).  I decided I should probably check it out before they simply forced the change.

It isn’t too far off from my last one and I could put a purple background so it didn’t look too different.  I liked the font options they had and it felt easier to read the text with this theme so I decided to switch.  I also added revolving header graphics and eliminated some of the unnecessary clutter on the side panel.  I might still tweak it a bit but so far I am satisfied.  I hope you appreciate the changes as well.