Spring Cosy Reading Night | TBR

Hello, folks! I come to you today with a tentative TBR for the upcoming Cosy Reading Night. This is the Spring round of the Cosy Reading Night and will take place during the hours of 7:00-10:00pm GMT on Friday 20th April and I’m really looking forward to going into my weekend by dedicating an evening to getting cosy with a book and a cup of tea. But I’m getting ahead of myself so let me explain for those unaware: Cosy Reading Nights are an evening dedicated to snacks and reading, hosted by the lovely Lauren from Laurenandthebooks from YouTube. You can check out her announcement video here.

This Cosy Reading night comes handily during the OWLs Readathon that I’m currently taking part in, so I’m hoping it will provide a much-needed boost to my reading progress for that. I don’t have huge ambitions for this Cosy Reading Night, I just thought I’ll probably be reading anyway so I might as well make the most of it and participate in this little event. It will make me feel more accountable/less susceptible to getting distracted by watching old episodes of The Great British Bake Off on Netflix (the struggle is real, guys, seriously). So let’s have a gander at what books I plan to read on Friday night, shall we?

TBR

  1. Saga Volume 8 by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples
  2. Through the Woods by Emily Carroll
  3. The Dark Days Club by Alison Goodman

 

 

As you can see, I’m aiming fairly low by choosing to put on my TBR two graphic novels and a book I’ve already started. In fact, it might get to Friday with me already having finished The Dark Days Club and, if that’s the case, I’ll be starting another book from my OWLs Readathon TBR. Regardless of how much (or how little) I end up reading, I’ll be sure to get cosy with a book and my cup of tea which, let’s face it, are the minimum requirements to participate in this lovely low-key readathon.

Are you joining in with the Cosy Reading Night on Friday? Have you participated in a Cosy Reading Night before? Let me know in the comments!


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April TBR

As you may have seen me mention in my March TBR post, I have a tumultuous history with TBRs since I rarely stick to them 100%. As you can see if you compare my March TBR with my recent March Wrap Up post, my monthly TBR never gets fully defeated without something else catching my eye mid-way through the month… I think it’s important to be aware of your reading habits and be realistic. However, since I scribble my TBRs into the monthly spreads of my bullet journal anyway, it makes sense to put my TBR on this blog to hold myself a little bit more accountable. If nothing else, it’s a good snapshot of where my head is at for my reading goals and it admittedly does help me to choose a book if I’m in a funny mood where I finish a book and don’t know what to pick up next. But don’t expect me to ever (god forbid) actually stick to my TBR! So let’s have a look at what I plan to read in the month of April…

img_0368April TBR

    1. The City of Brass by S.A. Chakraborty [eARC]
    2. Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell
    3. The Queens of Innis Lear by Tessa Gratton [eARC]
    4. The Elite by Kiera Cass
    5. The One by Kiera Cass
    6. The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin [eARC]
    7. Almost Love by Louise O’Neill [eARC]
    8. Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

8 books seems like enough to be getting on with. I tend to read 6ish books a month but I have literally no idea how busy or not busy April is going to turn out to be. I don’t have any major plans for April in terms of going away or anything and I don’t anticipate anything tumultuous in my “personal” or “professional” life so hopefully it will be plain sailing as far as my reading goes this month.

And, as you can probably surmise, I have quite a few eARCs I need to get through soon to help my NetGalley review ratio look a little healthier so that will be one of my main focuses in April. However, I’m also very consciously trying to maintain a good mix of ebooks and print copies on my TBRs so that when I’m tired of looking at a screen all-day I can take refuge in an actual book instead. It’s quite likely I’ll end up adding another couple of physical books onto this TBR as the month progresses but, for now, these are the books I’m planning to read in April. Wish me luck?

What books are you planning to read in the month of April?
Are there any new releases you’re really looking forward to picking up this month?
Are there any readathons happening this month that you’re taking part in?
Let me know in the comments section below!


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TBR | Easter Weekend Readathon

Hi everyone, it’s Thursday so that means it’s time for… nope, not a Tag Thursday after all! Like a lot of people, I’m officially heading into a 4-day weekend thanks to Easter. I have tomorrow off work (there’s nothing more glorious than a weekday off from work) as well as Monday, and it feels so good to not be in work now until Tuesday – I practically skipped out tonight after setting the out-of-office message on my emails. I was already planning to have a fairly low-key Easter weekend; I’m not a big religious observer of it so I don’t have family plans in that respect (plus my family is, you know, well over 100 miles away). I’m going for food and to the cinema on Saturday but aside from that I was just planning to rest and relax. And also read. I’d really like to just read in lovely long uninterrupted blocks of time. What a handy dandy time for a readathon!

It turns out, Kate from Reading Through Infinity thought much the same and she decided to set up an impromptu readathon which will take place over this coming weekend – you can find her announcement and TBR post here, if you’re curious. It’s very low-key and has simple guidelines – two of my favourite things for a readathon – so I’m definitely participating as much as I can.

For those interested in taking part you can check out Kate’s announcement post for more details but, in a nutshell, the Easter Weekend Readathon starts at midnight in your timezone on 30th March and runs through until midnight on Monday 2nd April but you can take part in as much or as little of that time as you want, depending on your own commitments. I have very few commitments so I should be well-placed to get some serious reading in, providing I don’t end up slumping for no apparent reason. Also, as it’s nearing the end of the month, I’d like to finish up some of these books so that I can start April afresh with a new TBR. Let’s see, shall we?

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Top Ten Tuesday | Books on my Spring TBR

Welcome one, welcome all, to Top Ten Tuesday! For those who are unaware (or who might need a reminder) Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by book bloggers and list lovers, The Broke and the Bookish, and is now hosted fantastically by Jana from That Artsy Girl! Each week a topic is chosen for bloggers to respond to.

This week’s topic is Books On My Spring TBR. This topic is extremely timely as it’s the first day of Spring (allegedly) and the weather has seemed a little brighter and sunnier, even if the bitterly cold winds haven’t completely disappeared. Still, the weather is definitely trying to shake off the wintry weather we’ve been having lately so I’m now looking forwards to Spring and all the books I am planning to read in this transitional period as Winter slowly lets go. Let’s take a look at the top ten books I’ve put on my Spring TBR…

10. The View from the Cheap Seats by Neil Gaiman

Can you believe I still haven’t read this non-fiction essay collection despite the fact I love Neil Gaiman and I’ve had this for months because I pre-ordered it? No, I can’t quite believe it either, I need to pull my socks up! This is a hefty hardback too, which is possibly why I’ve been able to make excuses for so long because there’s no way I could carry this to/from work for the sake of reading it on my commute. And although I don’t read that much non-fiction, I am trying to be better about it, so I should really try to get to this once and for all.

9. Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge

This book has been EVERYWHERE as of late – and rightly so. I waited for this to be released in paperback before picking it up recently and I’m really looking forward to reading it. Like, I think a lot of people, I can be guilty of thinking of black history as rooted in the American experience which is ridiculous given that I live in the UK. This has been blurbed by Nikesh Shukla who put together The Good Immigrant collection which I very much appreciated (“enjoyed” seems an odd word to use) so I really ought to have picked this up already as it promises to be “a powerful and provocative argument on the role that race and racism play in modern Britain”.

8. The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin

Next up on my list we have a book that I definitely should have already finished because I was lucky enough to get an eARC through NetGalley and it was released early in March, and yet I haven’t read/reviewed it yet because I am a terrible person. Late last year, Stephanie from Adventures of a Bibliophile gave this a rave review and it put the book on my radar – a quick request on NetGalley and I thankfully had a copy. But I’ve yet to read it, despite all these things working in its favour, I really need to fix that.

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March TBR

Sooo I have a fraught relationship with TBRs – I’m generally good at sticking to them if it’s for a short-term thing, i.e. a readathon, but if it’s a month-long or (worse still) year-long, I promptly forget about every single book I wanted to read as soon as I write it down on some form of TBR. Like I said, “fraught” would probably be an apt descriptor.

However, as I’ve been drawing out my monthly bullet journal spreads thus far this year, I’ve happened to include a page for that month’s TBR. Sure, I do add to the page throughout the month if I decide to read something that wasn’t originally on there, but I also still really try to think ahead and plan what I want to read for the upcoming month. So as I was drawing out my fresh spreads for March, I thought if I’m doing this anyway – and, let’s face it, making it quite permanent considering it’s right there, in my bullet journal, in black ink – why not also tell my blog/the internet about it and give myself even more accountability? ‘Why not’ indeed.

Handily, this isn’t just your average March TBR though, it’s also a TBR for a readathon, specifically Zoe’s 24-hour long readathon, aptly named Readathon by Zoe, which is happening this Saturday, 3rd March. Hopefully setting a TBR for both a very short-term goal that is that readathon and for the whole of March will play to my strengths and I’ll manage to actually stick to said TBRs. If I don’t, well, then this post was just a nice indication of what books I felt like reading at this present moment in time, a snapshot of my reading taste at this point in the year, if you will. We shall see…

March TBR

 

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Femmeuary Cosy Reading Night | TBR

Hello, folks! I come to you today with a tentative TBR for the upcoming Cosy Reading Night. It will take place during the hours of 7:00-10:00pm GMT on Wednesday 21st February and I’m really looking forward to dedicating an evening to getting cosy with a blanket and a book, a cup of tea, and maybe some snacks, whilst I hunker down and get to reading.

For those unaware, Cosy Reading Nights are hosted by the lovely Lauren from Laurenandthebooks from YouTube you can check out her announcement video here. This Cosy Reading Night takes places during “Femmeuary”, an initiative Lauren is following for the month of February in which she reads, watches, and listens to things created by women. In the spirit of this comes the Femmeuary Cosy Reading Night, and so I’m going to put any male reading on hold for a night whilst I tuck into some writing created by women.

TBR

  1. Carol/The Price of Salt by Patricia Highsmith
  2. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: Illustrated Edition by J.K. Rowling, illustrated by Olivia Lomenech Gill
  3. the sun and her flowers by rupi kaur

As you can see, I’ve tried to be realistic about my TBR this time round, and I’ve chosen a novel, an illustrated book, and a poetry collection so that I can take my pick of whatever medium and genre I feel like reading on the night. Hopefully (fingers crossed!) I will be able to complete at least one of these fully in the three-hour readathon but, if not, I’m sure I’ll complete them soon since they’re all on my existing TBR anyway. It would be really great if I could get to reading The Price of Salt in particular because I really want to watch the film starring Rooney Mara and Cate Blanchett (and I need to read the book first, obviously) and the novel also conveniently fulfils the “read an own voices book” for the Around the Year in 52 Books reading challenge – two birds with one stone, eh? But mostly I just hope to enjoy the low-key fun that is Cosy Reading Night.

Are you joining in with the Cosy Reading Night on Wednesday? Have you participated in a Cosy Reading Night before? Let me know in the comments!


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24in48 Readathon (Jan 2018) | Sign-Up & TBR

What’s this? Another foolhardy readathon sign-up post – yep! This time I’m participating in the 24 in 48 Readathon which is running this weekend, from 12:01 AM EST on Saturday 27th up until 11:59 PM EST on Sunday 28th January. The basic principle is very simple – you try to read for 24 hours within a 48-hour period.

If my calculations are correct, if I waited to start reading at the official time of 12:01 EST that would be 5:01 am where I am over in GMT and, whilst I love readathons, not enough to wake up at 5am on my day off, I’m afraid. However, I am planning to go for this method anyway (over changing the readthon to be 12am my time) because I’ve never tried it this other way before and I suspect it might work out better for me. Plus, even though I’ve previously planned to stay up past midnight and start reading before going to sleep for a bit on Saturday, I never actually did that, so I suspect sticking with the official times might actually be better in the long run. We shall see!

The folks who’ve been around on my blog for a while might remember that I took part in the 24 in 48 Readathon back in January and July last year and had a blast both times, with relative success during both! I like the idea of these shorter term readathons because they’re a quick and easy in-and-out sort of approach, with participants just trying their hardest to squeeze reading into their day(s) wherever they can. I like that attitude, and it has a great community feel too. However, unlike some of the uber dedicated participants, I’ve never managed to make it to the hallowed 24 hours, not even close at 14.5 and 16 hours respectively. So these days I tend to aim for a nice 12 hours of reading which, for me, on a weekend when I’m off and want to just laze about, is still pretty challenging. This round I’m aiming for 12 hours of reading again because everyone loves consistency, right? I probably had success in January 2017 because I had a range of genres and mediums to choose from and I’m a big advocate of that tactic during readathons in general, so I’ll definitely be doing that again this time.

TBR

Obviously there is no way on god’s green earth that I’m going to finish all of these books, even though I’m halfway through some of them already, but that’s entirely not the point – I like to have a selection of things to dip in and out of, so I don’t get bored or slumpy during the readathon. Also it’s good to have things that are portable (i.e. eARCs and ebooks) or good for squeezing reading in at the same time as doing errands (i.e. audiobooks), and that has seemed to work well for me in the past too. I might even have a look if there are any graphic novels that I can borrow through my local library or on Amazon Prime Reading to mix it up even more! Ambitious? Perhaps. Foolhardy? We shall see…

(PS – I will definitely be using Twitter to update how I’m doing throughout the weekend so check out my Twitter thread of updates if you’re curious about my reading!)

Are you participating in the 24 in 48 Readathon this weekend? Do you have your TBR all ready and are raring to go? Or have you participated in any short readathons in the past, like the Dewey’s 24 Hour Readathon? Let me know in the comments below and let’s chat readathons!


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Bout of Books 21 | Sign Up & TBR

Hi everyone, it’s the first readathon of the year for me – it’s Bout of Books time! Having felt a bit bogged down with readathons and reading challenges in the last quarter of 2017, I stopped putting so much pressure on myself to participate in every readathon and instead had a nice little break, so I missed out on the last Bout of Books round back in August. However, now, I’m fully rested and raring to go again with readathons so Bout of Books 21 has come at exactly the right time for me!

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda Shofner and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 8th and runs through Sunday, January 14th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 21 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog.
– From the Bout of Books team

I like Bout of Books largely because it’s so low-key that there aren’t really reading challenges or any restrictions on what you can or can’t do – so long as you just read, you’re already winning at the readathon! So here we have it, this is officially my very low-key sign up. Although there aren’t specific prompts or challenges, it’s still probably advisable to have some kind of TBR in mind so I don’t go rogue and start reading something utterly ill-advised like Les Miserables or something. Here’s the stack I’ve impulsively decided on – I’ll (try to) read from this selection of books over the course of the readathon.

TBR

    1. The Fandom  by Anna Day
    2. The Language of Thorns by Leigh Bardugo
    3. The Winner’s Crime by Marie Rutkoski
    4. How Not To Be a Boy [audiobook] by Robert Webb
    5. Princess Diaries: Take Two [audiobook] by Meg Cabot

I’ve tried to include a range of genres and mediums so hopefully no matter where, or when, or what mood I’m in, I can do a bit of reading for the Bout of Books readathon in some form or another. Plus this should help jump-start my audiobook listening which was lacking, to say the least, in the latter half of 2017. Hopefully anyway… fingers crossed!

If you want to keep up with my (admittedly sparse) updates during the course of the readathon, I’ve started a Twitter thread of my updates.

Are you participating in this round of Bout of Books? Comment below if so, I’d love to chat books and we could help cheer each other on!


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Taking Stock & December TBR

Well folks, somehow it is December already – when did that happen, right?! I’m pretty sure I blinked sometime in September and now it’s the last month of 2017. December means that it’s almost the end of the year, which means that it’s high time to panic about meeting reading goals so this year I thought I would pause for a second and take stock of where I’m at with each of my reading challenges and use this to partially dictate my December TBR. I don’t really do monthly TBRs because I tend not to stick to them, but I thought it could be useful as we enter the home stretch and those finish lines are in sight.

Goodreads Challenge

I nearly always set my Goodreads Challenge at 52 books, 1 book for each week of the year, and 2017 was no exception. I often surpass this goal, but not by very much, so I never aim for the loftier target of 75 or the nearly impossible (for me) target of 100 books. I am continually amazed by those readers who consistently hit 100 books a year – how do you do it?! However, when I realised I’d surpassed 52 books quite comfortably, I did up my target to 75 books and, as of today, I’m sitting pretty at 78 books – I did it! Whilst I feel pretty confident that I’ll be able to add a few more to that number, there is no way I’m going to hit the next ‘big’ number of 100 (especially since I’ve read most of my graphic novel stashes) so I’ll just leave it as it is and celebrate the victory now.

Book Riot Read Harder

It’s no secret that the Book Riot Read Harder Challenge is intended to stretch your reading comfort zone and push you to try new things and things outside of the mainstream, especially when it comes to diversifying your reading. For this very reason, participating in the Book Riot challenge always feels like constructively trying to think about what books and authors you read and how these are perhaps not the most diverse, if you’re not being conscious of what novels you’re choosing. I fully respect and appreciate the Book Riot challenge for this noble goal. Unfortunately, I struggle most often with the Book Riot challenges, and this year is no exception. Right now, I’m sitting on 12 out of 24 challenges completed. There is no way I am going to finish this challenge, even if I binned the books I want to read before the year is out and only allowed myself to read things that would fulfil the challenge prompts. Because of this, I’m going to accept now that I’ve failed the Book Riot Read Harder challenge and come back next year ready to focus on it as a priority.

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#TheReadingQuest | Sign-Up and TBR

What is the most sensible thing to do when you’re in the middle of doing a long readalong of a super long book AND a readathon where you read only 500+ page books AND you have a backlog of book reviews and blog posts to write? That’s right- sign up for another reading challenge! (It made sense in my head, I swear. Yes, I may be procrastinating.)

I could not resist joining in with this one though because it looks like SO MUCH FUN and has a pretty gameboard and challenges and side quests and I’m basically a sucker for anything like this. “This” is #TheReadingQuest which was created by Aentee from @ Read At Midnight. All the amazing artwork that accompanies this challenge was created by CW of Read, Think, Ponder. Be sure to check both of them out because they have great blogs! The readathon runs from tomorrow, Sunday 13th August until Sunday 10th September – so we’re in this one for the long haul, guys.

The Reading Quest Sign Up Post

The readathon is based round a challenge board, a bingo board if you will, and you pick a book to complete each square on your chosen path across the board. ‘But how do I chose my path?’ I hear you ask – well, you pick which Character Class to play as, and you start off on their quest path accordingly. There are 4 to choose from (Knight, Rogue, Mage, and Bard) and the challenges on each path reflect the chosen character type – i.e. on the Mage path you read books about magic and mythology. Just like the very best video games you can also branch off and complete side quests to earn extra points during the course of your quest. And once you’re done with one character’s path, you can then move onto the next one, and continue questing onwards! You earn experience points and health points as you go along – for a full run-down of these I’d advise everyone to go check out Aentee’s original post because she explains it better than I ever could!

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