Au Revoir France, Hola Spain!

If you’ve been following my #BackpackEurope adventure, you know that I arrived in Caen, Normandy, France on Monday. (Catch up on my entries here and here.)

Today I say au revoir to France as I head across the border to Spain.* Continue reading

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Vive Le France!

Welcome to Week 2 of the #BackpackEurope reading challenge. 

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I’m starting week 2 in France. Bonjour!

Last week, as you know, I flew into Heathrow and started my journey in England with Wuthering Heights. Although not a book I ended up liking, I can at least now say I’ve read it. (And bonus, I can mark it off my #GARbingo board.)

And go give my friends over at The Reader’s Room some love for creating and hosting this fun literary adventure! Continue reading

#BackpackEurope: Week 1 Wrap-Up

On Monday, I started the Backpack Across Europe Summer 2018 Reading Challenge. This reading challenge, hosted by the awesome folks over at The Reader’s Room, is all about exploring Europe via literature.

The challenge has rules, special events, and travel obstacles making it like a virtual board game with reading. As you know, I opted to “fly”* into Heathrow on Monday and my literary journey started with English author Emily Brontë’s classic Wuthering Heights. Continue reading

SFFTBR Reading Challenge Starts Today

If you caught my last post, then you read about the 5 reading challenges I’m currently doing (or will be doing).

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Today starts the Science Fiction/Fantasy To Be Read Reading Challenge. It runs from today, July 1, 2018, through June 30, 2019. Twelve months to complete this 50-book challenge.

I have a starting TBR of 50 books—and that’s just the ones I currently own.  (I know, I know!) As I went through the synopses, (yep, that’s correct. That’s the plural of synopsis. I checked.) I believe I’m missing a few categories. So I may be asking for recommendations in some of the categories.

I’ll be posting my #SFFTBR updates here, on Goodreads/Twitter (my Twitter account is connected to my GR account), and on Litsy (wanderinglynn). (Just look for the #SFFTBR hashtag.)

And if you’re so inclined & want to play along, then here are the categories (or here’s the handy-dandy SFFTBR Reading Challenge PDF version):

1 Longest Book on your TBR
2 Shortest Book on your TBR
3 Written by Person of Color
4 Written by straight, white male author (look close & critically on diversity)
5 Strong female lead & passes Bechdel test
6 Set in the future
7 Set in the past
8 Horror (or close equivalent)
9 Award-winning Fantasy
10 Award-winning SF
11 includes African mythology
12 includes Norse mythology
13 includes Asian mythology
14 includes LGBTQ+ relationship
15 YA novel not suited for (younger) teens
16 A sequel
17 Compared to the “Hunger Games”
18 Compared to “Game of Thrones”
19 includes a prophecy
20 Saving the world from evil
21 “…” of “…” Title
22 A book that was gifted to you
23 gorgeous cover
24 lowest rated on GR
25 can’t remember how much time has passed since you bought the book
26 love triangle
27 POV character dies or family member died
28 encountering an alien species
29 murder investigation
30 shows the worst of humanity
31 war or soldier story
32 short story
33 graphic novel
34 recommended by a litten
35 elves/orcs/dwarfs
36 space exploration
37 fairytale retelling
38 New York Times Bestseller
39 here be dragons
40 includes a map
41 children’s book
42 last in a series
43 beautifully written
44 one of Unbound World’s Top 100 Fantasy novels that you never heard about
45 steampunk
46 classic Fantasy/SF
47 your choice
48 your choice
49 your choice
50 your choice

Tell me in the comments below if you plan on playing along. And share your recommendations for any of the categories too!

Happy Reading!

Summer ’18 Reading Challenges

Somehow, someway, I have committed myself to 5 different reading challenges. That’s right. Five.

I blame Litsy (mostly).

I also blame Litsy for my exponentially growing TBR, so much so, that I put myself on a book buying ban earlier this month.

(Of course, I may have already broken that ban when I received an email today from Subterranean Press about a special edition of Kevin Hearne’s Hexed, book 2 of the Iron Druid Chronicles. I had already pre-ordered Hounded, Book 1, so I *had* to pre-order Hexed. Right?) Continue reading

The Book Run-Down: Week 22

Wow, can you believe we’re almost 1/2 through 2018?! This year is flying by and so are the books. This has been a bit of a crazy month for me, hence the lack of posting. But thing should be settling down in the next week, so hopefully, I’ll post more. But for now, let’s do a book check-in.

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My May Stats:

  • 9 books (34 for the year)
    • 1 ebook
    • 1 audiobook
    • 3 + 1 GARbingo books (one wasn’t on my bingo board but is on the GAR List of 100) for a total of 5 + 1 GARbingo books
    • 1 five-star read

And here are the books (in the order that I finished them):

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  • The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
  • Along Came A Spider by James Patterson
  • Yes Please by Amy Poehler (audiobook)
  • Blood of Elves by Andrzej Sapkowski
  • Magic Hunter by C.N. Crawford (ebook)
  • The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
  • The Color Purple by Alice Walker
  • Memory Zero by Keri Arthur
  • Generation 18 by Keri Arthur

I managed to finish my first audiobook. Taking some advice from my fellow Littens, I listened to a non-fiction work, Yes Please by Amy Poehler and read by Amy Poehler. While I’m still not crazy about audiobooks (and I still get twitchy about counting an audiobook as “read”), I did finish it. I have mixed opinions about the book itself (see my review on Goodreads).

I read a total of 4 GAR books: The Sun Also Rises, Along Came A Spider, The Joy Luck Club, and The Color Purple. While the Joy Luck Club is on the GAR List of 100, I don’t have it on my #GARbingo board. That’s why I’m counting it as 3 + 1. This brings my #GARbingo board total to 5 +1.

My only 5-star read of the month was The Color Purple by Alice Walker. Somehow I made it this far in life never having read it. The Color Purple was (sadly) never assigned in any of my English or literature classes. But thanks to the GAR, it was on my #GARbingo TBR. Plus, I’m trying to get through some of the thinner GAR books before tackling the chunksters like Pillars of the Earth and Atlas Shrugged.

Although there were challenging parts to read (domestic violence, rape), the story of Celie was fascinating and powerful. I highly recommend anyone read The Color Purple. It sheds some light on an often confusing and sometimes dark period in our history. It is beautifully written and just incredible.

Overall a solid month of reading despite the fact that there were about 10-12 days where I didn’t have the time or was too exhausted to read at all. But I’m still right on track for my Goodreads 2018 challenge.

To see my reviews of these 9 books or any of the other books I’ve read, find me on Goodreads.

What books did you read in May? Any favorites? Leave your recommendations in the comments below.

The Great American Read Book Bingo Challenge

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PBS is launching the Great American Read, an 8-part series that explores and celebrates the power of reading. The GAR, hosted by Meredith Vieira, will engage audiences with a list of 100 diverse books, encouraging audiences to read the books, vote from the list of 100, and share their personal connections to the titles. Continue reading