Thursday, January 9, 2014

BOUT OF BOOKS 9.0: DOUBLE DATE

This challenge is hosted by Writing My Own Fairy Tale:
You must pick two books that you wold recommend someone read together (like a double date!) and explain your reasons for the recommendation. 
The two books I am recommending are The Black Count by Tom Reiss and The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas.
The Black Count is the biography of Alexandre Dumas's father, Alex. Alexandre used his father's story as inspiration for his book The Count of Monte Cristo, which I had read years ago and loved.  The story that Dumas tells about Edmund Dantes is exciting and heartbreaking and the true story of his father is even more incredible. 

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

BOUT OF BOOKS 9.0: INTRODUCE SOMEONE TO YOUR FAVORITE GENRE

Only one challenge today and it comes from Doing Dewey: 
For this challenge, pick a book or a few books that you think would make a great introduction to your genre of choice.
My favorite genre is fantasy and I recommend the Mistborn books by Brandon Sanderson to almost everyone I talk to. The first book is Mistborn: The Final Empire. It is a chunkster which might put some people off, but it is well written with great characters, strong worldbuilding, and the coolest magic system ever. Also, while it had a society based on feudalism, it is not the typical quasi-Medieval European setting that a lot of fantasy books have.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

BOUT OF BOOKS 9.0: READING TACTICS

This challenge comes from Sarah Says Read:
How do you fit in as much reading as possible during Bout of Book? How do you squeeze in those extra pages?
Audiobooks are huge for getting in as much reading time as possible. It took me a while to get into them. A bad narrator can kill a good book and I have had to steer clear of a sizable number after listening to an audio sample, but now I have a short list of narrators whose work I love and when that coincides with a book I was already interested in I usually go for the audiobook instead of the printed one. I try to include one or two during BOB because it means I can get reading in while running errands, while driving to and from work, while knitting, and even in the shower. I keep headphones on me at all times during BOB so I can listen to books while I am walking around the grocery store or while I am doing paperwork.

I also fit in more time reading printed or e-books by reading on my lunch break (which I tend to do anyway) and cutting down on television. When television can't be given up, mostly when the Chargers or Flyers or Villanova basketball teams is on, I mute it and read off and on during the games unless they are super important. I also make sure I keep one of my BOB books in my purse at all times because you never know when you can fit some extra reading time in.

Monday, January 6, 2014

BOUT OF BOOKS 9.0: BOOK BUYING SPREE

The second challenge of the day is hosted by Bookish Comforts:
Imagine if you will: you've just received some FANTASTIC news! You have won a $100 book buying spree! Now comes the hard part though: what books will you buy?! For this challenge, For this challenge, you'll be creating you'll be creating your book buying spree wishlist and sharing it in the comments.
This was harder than I thought it would be. I had a total of $100.01 the first time I made my list. Ugh. So close! After some rearranging I got in just under the limit.

BOUT OF BOOKS 9.0: MAD LIBS

The first challenge I am completing is a mad libs one (I love these) and it comes from Cheap Thrills:
1. I give you a list of words I need from you: noun, verb, adjective, etc. 2. You pick words from book titles (share title and author so we can learn about new books!). 3. Use those words to complete a short story. 
The list of needed words and the template can be found here. I stuck with books on my shelf or on my TBR list and I probably should have picked more outlandish words.  The blurb actually ended up making sense. I would totally read a book with that description.

My list of words:
a. character name: The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie 
b. adjective: Shattered Pillars by Elizabeth Bear
c. adjective: Broken Homes by Ben Aaronovitch 
d. item: The Crimson Crown by Cinda Williams Chima
e. occupation: The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood
f. act of violence: I Don't Want to Kill You by Dan Wells
g. adjective: The Bloody Chamber by Angela Carter
h. noun: The Hero of Ages by Brandon Sanderson 
i: noun: The Forest by Edward Rutherford

And the result:
"I just read the greatest book!

This guy Roger Ackroyd ends up in the middle of a shattered conspiracy. Turns out his ancestors were pirates, and he might be the key to finding the broken crown. It's a mythic artifact that disappeared centuries ago, and now a shadowy group of assassins are looking for it. No one knows what uncovering it might do, but these guys are willing to kill for it. I won't say anything else. But believe me, if you like bloody stories with heroes and forests, you have to read this one." 

Saturday, January 4, 2014

BOUT OF BOOKS 9.0 GOALS AND UPDATES

I will be participating in Bout of Books 9.0. Such a good way to help kick off a new year of reading. Goals template adapted from here.

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 6th and runs through Sunday, January 12th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure, and the only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books read in a week. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 9.0 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team
Time Devoted to Reading
I will be reading all week. I have work Monday-Friday and there are a few week nights I have plans in the evening but that still leaves plenty of time to get in some serious reading.

My Goals
My goal is to read at least four of the books listed below. They are books I had planned on reading soon and there is some genre variety so there should be something I want to read regardless of what I am in the mood for on the day.  I want to participate in at least four challenges. I am not going to set a goal for leaving comments, but I usually end up visiting a sizable chunk from the list of participating blogs each day.

Books to Read
1. The Darwin Elevator by Jason M. Hough 
2. Forever Rumpole: The Best of The Rumpole Stories by John Mortimer
3. Tooth and Claw by Jo Walton 
4.  The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin 
5. The Psychopath Test: A Journey Through the Madness Industry by Jon Ronson (narrated by the author) 
6. My √Āntonia by Willa Cather 
7. Dune by Frank Herbert
8. The Tale of Raw Head and Bloody Bones by Jack Wolf
9. Blackbirds by Chuck Wendig