2014 – My Reading Year
Reading Roundup / January 1, 2015

Happy new year everyone!  I hope 2015 is a good one for you.  It’s about time I got on and did my review of my reading year.  It was a good year in general.  I did have a couple of major reading slumps, which meant that this was the first time in many years that I didn’t make my GoodReads challenge.  I had set my challenge at 100 books of which I read 91, which isn’t too bad going, I suppose.  My challenge goal didn’t take account of the fact that this year I listened to far more audiobooks than previously.  These do take me much longer than reading a Kindle book, but are very enjoyable. Some stats One reason I love GoodReads is that is can give you some interesting stats and a record of your reading progress.  Here are some of mine. I read 91 books in 2014.  The longest of these was Brandon Sanderson’s Words of Radiance, which weighed in at a whopping 1,088 pages or 48 hours and 15 minutes of listening pleasure.  I gave my father-in-law this audiobook for Christmas – it will take him a bit of time to get through it! I rated…

Reading roundup – December 19th 2014
Reading Roundup / December 19, 2014

I must admit, I’m in a real reading slump right now. As I’ve mentioned in a recent post, I’m currently trying to adjust to my first hearing aid.  Most of the reading I’ve done recently has been on that subject.  I don’t think I’ve read more than a chapter or two of a fiction book in the last couple of weeks.  Adjusting to the hearing aid has also meant that I’ve not been in the mood to listen to audiobooks.  It’s not even the book I’m reading – it’s Mortal Heart, the last in Rachel Lefevers His Fair Assassin trilogy and it is a good book I think. I am going out of town for Christmas leaving tomorrow and I’ve not even planned my vacation reading.  Dear me, I’ve got it bad!  Perhaps when I’m away from work and on a plane with nothing much to do, my reading will be kicked up a notch again! Happy holidays and stay safe.

I’m back! Reading roundup – 10th December 2014
Reading Roundup / December 6, 2014

Aaand I’m back after my long hiatus!  Thank you for your patience. First things first; confession time,  I reached exactly 0 words total on my NaNoWriMo project.  Sigh. My first challenge was that I was too engrossed in In the Afterlight the last in Alexandra Bracken’s Darkest Minds trilogy.  This was released just a day or so before NaNoWriMo, which was just mean!  I really couldn’t put the thing down.  I found this last instalment in Ruby and co’s story to be engrossing and wonderfully satisfying.  I probably won’t do a full review on it as it’s been a little while since I read it, but it got a five star rating from me on GoodReads. Then in November things became unexpectedly crazy at work and I spent all day every day working my butt off to keep our support queue under some kind of control.  After that the last thing I felt like doing was coming home and writing.  It was much easier to delve into someone else’s world than to work on creating my own.  These are all, excuses, I  know, and I’m not proud of myself.  Maybe next year I’ll do better. Other non-reading events in my…

Reading roundup – October 25th 2014
Reading Roundup / October 24, 2014

This week I have been continuing with Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series which I’m reading as a mixture of Kindle ebook and Audible audiobook.  Have I mentioned before how much I love Whispersync for Voice?  The ability to switch between the two media without having to worry about finding your place is pure awesomeness.  Anyway, I digress.  I finished Outlander this week and have moved onto Dragonfly in Amber.  I have to say, my rereading of the series is enhanced by the Starz series.  When reading about Claire and Jamie’s adventures it’s great to be able to imagine Catriona Balfe and the deliciously edible Sam Heughan in the roles.  It might even be able to get me past that point in Voyager where I lost interest in the series. This week I’m back on nightshift for a week to cover a coworker’s vacation.  I fully expect to spend my time monitoring servers in the company of Jamie, Claire and the others of Clans Fraser and McKenzie. In other news, I’ll be going on blog hiatus for the month of November, so this will be my last entry for a while.  I have decided to take part in NaNoWriMo.  For those of…

Reading roundup – October 17th 2014
Reading Roundup / October 17, 2014

So this week I finished a couple of books, one of which left me thinking, “oh… OK.  What happened exactly?” and the other received my first five star rating in quite some time.  The first of these was Unraveled by Gennifer Albin, the final book in her Crewel World YA dystopian trilogy.  I think it would require a second reading to understand fully what Albin was trying to achieve.  Unfortunately, I don’t feel strongly enough about it to care about a reread.  I loved the first book, second one was so-so and the third.  Hmmmm.  I probably won’t review this one. The second one was the audiobook of Graeme Simsion’s quirky romance The Rosie Project.  I adored this, so expect my full review next week. Other than reading, I’ve been indulging in my new secret obsession; the British quiz show QI, which I discovered recently on UK Netflix.  For those of you who aren’t familiar with this, it’s a cross between standup comedy and a quiz show.  The quizmaster is the always engaging Stephen Fry with regular panelist Alan Davies.  The other panelists are standup comedians generally from the UK.  Each episode has a theme, and panelists gain points by…

Reading roundup – October 10th 2014
Reading Roundup / October 10, 2014

First of all, happy Thanksgiving to my Canadian readers!  An extra day to read!  Woohoo!  Have a great weekend and safe travels if you’re visiting family.  We already have the pumpkin pie ready. As my regular readers may know, this week saw the release of some books that I had been anticipating.  See below for details.   Unfortunately I was also sick with a nasty headache and ended up taking Wednesday off work.  Fortunately, listening to the audiobook of Blood of Olympus was much less taxing than assisting people with their technical support issues – and, let’s face it, a lot more fun. So let’s cut to the chase and talk about this week’s books. Added to my library this week Tribulare by Anne Robillard.  This is the sixth book in her contemporary fantasy series.  I really look forward to reading this, and I see the next two are due in ebook format at the end of the month!  Yay!  I have been collecting Robillard’s books in Kobo format. The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion.  This was rather an impulse buy with my last Audible credit for this month.  It’s about a socially inept geek who develops a scientific plan…

Reading roundup – October 3rd 2014
Reading Roundup / October 3, 2014

Well, I had been going to spend this blog post moaning that I was in a bit of a reading slump anticipating all the new releases coming out this month. I felt I couldn’t really get into any of the books I was reading. However twice this week I managed to miss my bus or metro stop because I was reading!  I suppose I was more engrossed in my book than I thought.  For those interested among you the guilty book was Awakened, the eighth book in P.C. and Kirsten Cast’s House of Night series. One book I have read this week – I borrowed it from the library – was Opera for Dummies by David Pogue and Scott Speck.  Let me give a bit of background here.  A very good friend of mine is a keen opera goer and she normally attends several performances of the New York Metropolitan Opera’s Live in Cinemas season.  She is so passionate about it that this year I decided to accompany her to three operas.  Now, I know very little about opera, so I decided to do some research first of all.  I do enjoy the …For Dummies books.  They are usually excellent…

Reading roundup – September 19 2014
Reading Roundup / September 19, 2014

My apologies for the delay in my reading roundup this week.  I was rather distracted by the announcement of the new Kindles and the referendum held in my country of origin on independence.  I stayed up late last night watching the BBC and Scotland Decides.  I really hope once the dust has settled, the UK can work out some structure that works for everyone. Ahem, so onto more literary matters.  This week I breezed through Christine Manzari’s Deviation, the first in The Sophisticates, a YA dystopian series.  I absolutely loved it – expect a full review next week.  I’ve also been continuing with the audiobook of Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander.  I only listen for half an hour or so at night before I go to sleep, so at 33 hours it’s not quick.  I’m just about managing to keep ahead of the wonderful Starz TV series (at least as the episodes are broadcast in Canada.) Added to my library this week Conviction by Christine Manzari.  This is the second in the Sophisticates series.  I imagine you can guess where I’m going in my review if I immediately went out and bought the second book upon finishing…  I’ve not started it yet,…

Reading roundup – September 12th 2014
Reading Roundup / September 12, 2014

This week I have been reading shorter books so I feel I have been making excellent progress compared to the epic fantasy behemoths I’ve been reading lately.  I finished the cutesy contemporary romance Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins.  I will be doing a full review next week, so I won’t say too much now. I have also been dipping in and out of Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander.  OK, at 640 pages or 33 hours audiobook, that’s not exactly short…  I’ve been listening mainly to Davina Porter’s excellent audiobook narration.  As I am Scottish born, I appreciate her rendition of the Scots accent.  I was reading the series, but I became stuck in the middle of book three.  The major TV adaption by Starz has inspired me to start rereading.  I’ll probably just keep dipping in and out rather than reading it in a block. Since I’m talking about the series, I would just like to say how much I’m enjoying it.  We in Canada are a couple of weeks behind our US cousins.  I knew the series was in safe hands with Ronald D. Moore who helmed the wonderful Battlestar Galactica.  He is very skilled at creating worlds…

Reading Roundup – 5th September 2014
Reading Roundup / September 5, 2014

This week has been pretty quiet in terms of reading.  I’ve pretty much spent all my time this week finishing my reread of Brent Weeks’ The Blinding Knife and following up with the new release The Broken Eye.  These books are HUGE.  The Broken Eye comes in at 816 pages or 29 hrs and 33 mins in audiobook format.  I won’t say too much more – my full review will come out next week, so keep an eye out for it if you want to know my thoughts on it. Coming so close on my reread of Robin Hobb’s Realm of the Elderlings reading challenge I’m rather epic fantasied out.  I definitely need to take a break with some cutesy contemporary romance – Rainbow Rowell, Stephanie Perkins, I’m looking at you – or some cozy cat mysteries or some contemporary urban fantasy such as The Dresden Files.  I suspect I’ll just flick through my Kindle’s library and see what takes my eye. Next week sees the release of the first in a collaborative contemporary fantasy series by Cassandra Clare and Holly Black, The Iron Magisterium, so that my hit the spot. Added to my library this week The Heir of Fire by…