Monday, August 18

Bout-of-Books 11 Goals and Starting Line



I am excited to get started on Bout-of-Books 11!

Bout of Books

I will be participating in this week long read-a-thon. Haven't heard of this before? Here is the info:

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, August 18th and runs through Sunday, August 24th 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 11 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team

This post is to share my goals and what I hope to read.

My Goal is 7 books. Ambitious for me at this point in time but I will give it a shot!

Here are the books I will be reading from when I am reading a real book.



I usually read on my iPad at night so Mr. Books Devoured gets to keep sleeping.  When that time comes I will be choosing from my crazy long review list! The ones I plan to read first are:


I do have many more than that for review but I am hoping to at least finish The Three which I have already started. Not sure what I will read from there. Any opinions??

I am so happy that this BoutofBooks is taking place right now because I really need it!

I will be updating this post with all the daily totals and whatnot:

Updates (template adapted from Kelly

8/18
Number of books I’ve read today: LOL, ZERO.
Total number of books I’ve read: Zero
Pages read: About 15
Books Read: Trying to finish The Three by Sarah Lotz! But I think I may have to abandon it.
Today #insixwords: Tiny Minion Skipped Nap, Send Help!
Challenges: Book Scavenger Hunt


1. A Book that begins with “B” (for Bout of Books!) ~ Bright Young Things
2. A book that has been made into a movie/tv show ~ Interview with the Vampire
3. A series you love ~ Harry Potter 
4. An anthology of poems or short stories ~ Favorite Poems Old and New 
5. A book on your TBR shelf, or your full TBR shelves ~ Insurgent



8/19
Number of books I’ve read today: 
Total number of books I’ve read: 
Pages read: 
Books Read:
Today #insixwords: 
Things I learned on Twitter: 

The Challenge is to tell our favorite literary pair.  

What comes to mind automatically for me is Barrons and Mac from The Fever series by Karen Marie Moning! She is so saucy and he is so brooding.  They have one of those relationships that would have so much less drama with more communication but I suppose that's what makes it fun! 


8/20
Number of books I’ve read today: 
Total number of books I’ve read: 
Pages read:
Books Read: 
Today #insixwords: 
Things I learned on Twitter: 
Challenges:

8/21
Number of books I’ve read today: 
Total number of books I’ve read: 
Pages read: 
Books Read:
Today #insixwords: 
Things I learned on Twitter: 
Challenges:

8/22
Number of books I’ve read today: 
Total number of books I’ve read: 
Pages read: 
Books Read:
Today #insixwords: 
Things I learned on Twitter: 
Challenges:

8/23
Number of books I’ve read today: 
Total number of books I’ve read: 
Pages read: 
Books Read:
Today #insixwords: 
Things I learned on Twitter: 
Challenges:

8/24
Number of books I’ve read today: 
Total number of books I’ve read: 
Pages read: 
Books Read:
Today #insixwords: 
Things I learned on Twitter: 
Final Tally:

Friday, August 15

Is Reading A Habit That Can Be Broken?

In 2011 I read 130 books.  That is a lot.

In 2012 I read 80 books.  That is still a good amount.

In 2013 I read just 21 books.  Tiny Minion was born in July of this year and that has a lot to do with the low number.

In 2014 so far I am stuck at 30 books.



Infinite Days
The Sugar Queen
Carrier of the Mark
The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight
Noah's Rainy Day
Jenny Pox
Wait for You
Also Known As
The Body in the Woods
Stung
Tabula Rasa
Turn or Burn
Don't Even Think About It
Sekret
Kindling the Moon
Summoning the Night
The Strange and Beautiful  Sorrows of Ava Lavender
Fire & Flood
Riot
The Cruelty


Shannon 's favorite books »


Reading use to be something that I did every single day, at least for an hour or so.  Whenever I could fit it in.  I used to get seriously annoyed when anyone said "I don't have time to read." I still do actually. I can look back over the last year and I know that even though I am crazy busy, I still have time to read, I am just consistently choosing NOT to read.  I touched on this a little in my Top Ten Tuesday this week.
Is reading a habit that can be broken? I have been in slumps before but this one is really lasting a long time. I do have a LOT going on in my life right now but I have always made time to read before no matter what. Yesterday I was feeling sick all afternoon and evening. Perfect time to read right? I decided to continue my Netflix viewing of Supernatural instead. It seems that is happening to me a lot lately. I am constantly choosing Netflix or even silly iPad games instead of books. I am not sure why. I think partly it has to do with the amount of review books hanging over my head. I no longer feel free to peruse a book store or even my own shelves to choose any book I'd like and start reading. I feel the pressure to read what I NEED to read. Perhaps I need to start giving myself permission to read one for fun and one for review or something.

I just don't know what the root of the problem is here.  Is it the "job like" feeling that blogging has given me? I really don't know.  This doesn't feel like a typical reading slump where I am just not into anything I pick up.  I am just not feeling like I even want to pick anything up! I really hate that too because reading used to bring me so much joy.

What I find interesting too is that there are some books that I already own and really WANT to read! To All the Boys I've Loved before by Jenny Han being just one example. Too many series that I have started and own but not finished to even list.

Could the problem be my unreasonable review queue that I have no one to blame for but myself? I really have started to think that is a huge part of the problem. Hopefully I can maintain my self control and stop accepting review books for a long time.  Curse you NetGalley! (still my own fault really but I'll blame Netgalley anyway!)

Is reading a habit that I can just get myself back into? I am hoping that it is.  Maybe I should just schedule it into my day and see what happens then.  I have gotten myself a fantastic organizing system that I will share soon!

So what do I do y'all? Any advice? 
Have you ever been through this?

Wednesday, August 13

Saying Good Bye to My Delicious Rating System

Books Devoured was always supposed to include food in some way.  Everyone eats. It is a unifying thing between every human on earth.  Food crosses boundaries, bring people together, and gives sustains us.  I have always been a fan of cook books too.  So I thought that it would be a perfect marriage here on BD to review cook books.  (I still may get that as a regular feature one day.) Plus the word "Devoured" brings food to my mind.  So when I set out to make a rating system, food just seemed the perfect fit.  

This has been my rating system for a long time:

The numbers are just a general guideline.  I think that anything 3 and up is a "good" review.  I like having a number system just to give an idea what type of review you are about to read.  If you really want to know my feelings for a book, the actual review that I write is much more accurate than the numbers.  
1- Brussel Sprouts. It's just not for me.
2- Plain white rice. It’s just O.K.
2.5 - Rice and Gravy. It's not my favorite, but has some good qualities.
3- Pizza on a Monday night. Satisfying and a Pleasure.
4- Steak and Potatoes. Delicious and Wonderful.
4.5- Steak and Potatoes with a Chocolate Dessert. Absolutely Fabulous.
5- Moms Fried Chicken and Mashed Potatoes. It doesnt get any better! 

I am now trying to bring the blog up to date a little and change is a good thing.  As much as I have loved that rating system, it is time to let it go.  I am now going to be using the Peacock system as follows:





The Feather denotes a Half-Star.  I am trying to use that less and less though.  I feel it just muddies the waters.  I like having a rating system because it lets the reader know what tone the review is going to be. It also helps me decide on future books in the series or by the same author.  That is of course just my opinion though, I totally understand why some bloggers have done away with their rating system.  

What do you think? Sad to see the food system go? Love the Peacocks as much as I do?

Tuesday, August 12

Top Ten Tuesday ~ Books I'm Not Sure I Want To Read





Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly Meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

Here are the Top Ten Books I am not sure I want to read:

10.  Outlander by Diana Gabaldon ~  The book is SOOOO long and then there is more in the series. I just don't think I can get into that kind of investment right now.  And then there is the TV series now too.  I'm thinking I could just watch that and be good. Right?

9.  Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia ~  I actually own the first 2 books in the series in hardback.  I planned to read them because I had been seeing good reviews.  Then the movie happened. And it tanked. I actually watched just a few minutes of it on TV once and I wasn't sure I'd like to watch the rest.  Now that has made me wonder if I really want to invest in the series.

8.  The Casual Vacancy by JK Rowling ~ I go back and forth on this one.  It kind of sounds boring. I do love JK though.  Really not sure on this one.

7.  Blood Red Road by Moira Young ~ This is another one I own that I wanted to read.  Then the rest of the series came out. I really never heard much more about it.  Some people complained about the way the dialect was written into the story and I think that might annoy me.

6.  The rest of the Maze Runner series by James Dashner ~ I actually liked The Maze Runner. A lot.  Until the end.  Then I was kinda confused, annoyed, frustrated and disappointed. At first I thought I would get over that and want to read more. I actually won the rest of the series. The opposite has happened though, the more time passes the LESS I want to read more.  I am afraid of loving the book and hating the ending again.  It seems like such a hopeless situation.  Perhaps that is the point though right? Seems hopeless but it is redeemable? Really undecided on this one.

5.  Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn ~ See, what happened was. . . My MOM told me the whole story after she read it! Haha! I still kind of want to read it but I am thinking I will just watch Ben Affleck act it out for me instead.

4.  Iced by Karen Marie Moning ~ I Loved the first part of the Fever series with Mac and Barrons.  LOVED.  I loved the world that was created and the whole story and I was invested.  I just really don't think I can get behind Dani. I wasn't a huge fan of hers anyway and she is so young.  Really undecided.

3.  Insurgent and Allegiant by Veronica Roth ~ Most of the time I really want to finish this series because I loved Divergent and I even enjoyed the movie version.  But I have already heard that people hated the last book.  That makes me scared to ruin what I already love.  Honestly I probably will relent and read these but I am scared to.  And it speaks volumes that they are both sitting on my shelf unread still.

2.  Any Book by any author I have become "friends" with on fb or twitter ~ This is something that I have struggled with since the beginning of Books Devoured.  I genuinely like people that I build up a relationship with on twitter or fb.  Once that happens, I can only think one thing, "What if I hate their book?" Luckily, it hasn't happened yet.  The first author that I had this issue with was Jennifer Armentrout.  I loved chatting with her on twitter. This was before Half-Blood was released. I just really liked her and I was terrified to mess that up in case I didn't like her work.  Luckily, I in fact LOVED Half-Blood.  But the feeling is still there for a couple other ladies I have met.

1.  ALL THE BOOKS ~ Is reading a habit that can be broken? I have been in slumps before but this one is really lasting a long time. I do have a LOT going on in my life right now but I have always made time to read before no matter what.  Yesterday I was feeling sick all afternoon and evening.  Perfect time to read right? I decided to continue my Netflix viewing of Supernatural instead.  It seems that is happening to me a lot lately.  I am constantly choosing Netflix or even silly iPad games instead of books.  I am not sure why.  I think partly it has to do with the amount of review books hanging over my head.  I no longer feel free to peruse a book store or even my own shelves to choose any book I'd like and start reading.  I feel the pressure to read what I NEED to read.  Perhaps I need to start giving myself permission to read one for fun and one for review or something.

Hopefully I will be back with a couple of review of books I have actually finished soon! 
Until then, are there books you are not sure if you want to read? Is there something on my list you think I MUST read despite my current feeling?



Friday, August 1

August Debut Author Challenge Link-up



Is it really August already?! The summer is flying by! My kids will go back to school this month, YIKES! I am not ready for that but I am ready to see what you all are reading for the Debut Author Challenge this month! For more information about the Debut Author Challenge just click the DAC link in the bar above.






Link up your July reviews below.  This is the same linky that you will find over at my amazing partner Jana's site : That Artsy Reader Girl. So you only need to leave the link in one place or the other, not both. 

Please leave a direct link to your review and include the title of the book and your blog name.


I know why you are really here though. To see the winner for July!


The winner is will be posted later today after all entries have been verified so check back and see if you have won! 

The winner is:

Number 3 on the linky list was Courtney Reads a Lot with her review of The Art of Lainey! Congratulations Courtney! Look for an email from me!

Courtney Reads A Lot

 
Imagination Designs
Images by Riefka Designs