Monthly Archives: November 2016

PopSugar Monthly – October

PopSugar Ultimate Challenge (1 task)

hopefulsThe Hopefuls by Jennifer Close
#32 – The first book you see in a bookstore (online on Powell’s website)
While an interesting book, it was not always an easy read. Following a marriage over a longer period of time, most of it focused on the downward sprial caused by the husband’s political ambitions to the detriment of his relationship with his wife. It was well-done, just hard to read because aspects of it hit too close to home. Not one of the characters is perfect or innocent, and they all sort of play off of each other. The ending is positive, but realistic.

PopSugar Fall Challenge (3 tasks)

geeks-guideThe Geek’s Guide to Unrequited Love by Sarvenaz Tash
#2 – Male protagonist / female author
I liked this book more than I thought I would. I enjoyed all of the references to various fandoms. It was refreshing to see a romance played out in a realistic way – the ramifications of professing your undying love towards your best friend and comic book coauthor. The only negative is that because everything is from Graham’s perspective, we don’t really get to know Roxy that well.

gunslingerThe Gunslinger by Stephen King
#8 – A famous author you’ve never read
So…I didn’t really like this book. It felt dreamy and didn’t really make a lot of sense. Aspects of it were interesting, but as a whole, not a story that grabbed me. I would have stopped reading it if I wasn’t reading it for a challenge. I Wikipedia’d the plots of the other books in the series, and don’t have any interest in reading them.

clash-of-eaglesClash of Eagles by Alan Smale
#11 – Published in 2015
In a world where Rome never fell, a legion is sent to North America to find gold. Instead, the entire legion is destroyed, with only one survivor, who must figure out how to live in a culture completely alien to him. It was a phenomenal concept. Very well researched, and any historical holes were believably filled in. This book is more of my husband’s cup of tea, than mine (I still enjoyed it), so I probably won’t finish the trilogy. I’ll just bug him to tell me what happens.


October Reads

October saw a decrease in how many books I read – only 18 instead of my normal 30+. It’s quibbling, I know, since 18 books is still a large number of books to read in a given month. My decrease was caused by an increase in other obligations: Girl Scouts, deep cleaning my house, swim meets, etc… There wasn’t a way to make time for everything, and books got the boot because even I get sick of looking at my disaster of a house sometimes.

Audiobooks (9)

dark-waters death-of-riley care feeding vampires dreams-gods-and-monsters accidental-alchemist
schooled-in-magic oliver-twist bollywood-affair bronze-key

Of the nine books I listed to this month, three were in the magical boarding school genre: Dark Waters, Schooled in Magic, and The Bronze Key. I loved all of them. Dark Waters was an adult book, with the school being a college, and the plot focusing on a murder mystery. Schooled in Magic was YA, with the main character, Emily, being transported to a different universe because a necromancer wanted to sacrifice a “child of destiny”. She was rescued by a sorcerer, and then then shipped off to a boarding school to figure things out. Both this book and The Bronze Key followed the standard trying-to-keep-evil-from-taking-over-the-world plot line. The Accidental Alchemist was surprisingly entertaining. It was unique story idea that was well executed. Oliver Twist was very good as well. Very tongue in cheek and sarcastic. And horrifying to know that the squalor and treatment of children it depicted was a part of life back then. A Bollywood Affair was another book I enjoyed more than I thought I would. A light, fluffy romance read.

Novels (8)

geeks-guide start-a-scandal restoree gunslinger
paper-and-fire throne-of-glass clash-of-eagles hopefuls

The Geek’s Guide to Unrequited Love, The Gunslinger, Clash of Eagles, and The Hopefuls were all PopSugar books, so there will be another post with my thoughts on them. Do You Want to Start a Scandal was a fun romp. Two characters who needed a book finally got one. I loved Charlotte’s straight forwardness. I attempted to read Restoree for PopSugar, but while it was a romance, it wasn’t set in the future (even though I’d seen it on lists for that very thing). The concept of being abducted and then resurrected on an alien planet was well done.

Read Aloud (1)


I read The Wonderful Wizard of Oz to my younger daughter (with my son listening in on most of it, but it didn’t always hold his attention). She absolutely loved it! To the point that she dressed up as Dorothy for Halloween, complete with silver shoes. I know the movie is much beloved, but I still think the book is incomparably better.