Where I share my love of books with reviews, features, giveaways and memes. Family and needlepoint are thrown in from time to time.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Pages Read 2016

Easy peasy - Keep track of how many pages you read. 
 It is being hosted by The Crafty Engineer's Bookshelf

Levels are as follows:
1 - 13,000 pages read
2 - 26,000 pages read
3 - 52,000 pages read
4 - 78,000 pages read
5 - 104,000 pages read.

I believe that I read just under 14,000 pages last year - so we will go for level 1.  I have more time to read this year, so that should be pretty doable. 

Total to date:  4298

The Drowned Cities  - 437
Hollow City - 352
Matched - 369
This is Where it Ends - 281
Crossed - 367

Goat Mountain - 239
Brotherhood in Death - 388
Only Love Can Break Your Heart - 320
Orhan's Inheritance - 352
How Willa Got Her Groove Back - 240
Journey to the Center of the Earth - 48
Love Me Love Me Not - 200
Into the Dim - 432
A Ghostly Undertaking - 273

I Love Libraries Reading Challenge

The I Love Libraries Reading Challenge is simple - read books, ebooks, listen to audiobooks, etc that have all been checked out from your library!  It is being hosted @ Bea's Book Nook

I work at our local public library so have a myriad of items checked out at any one time!    

Levels are as follows:
  • Board book - 3
  • picture book - 6
  • early reader - 9
  • chapter book - 12
  • middle grades - 18
  • young adult - 24
  • adult - 36
  • just insert IV - 50
I think that I am going to go for Young Adult, as that is the area of the library that I work in.  (So of course, most of my books are going to be Young Adult titles as well!)

  1. Goat Mountain by David Vann.
  2. The Drowned Cities by Paulo Bacigalupi
  3. Hollow City by Ransom Riggs
  4. Matched by Allie Condie
  5. Crossed by Allie Condie
  6. A Journey to the Center of the Earth by Jules Verne
  7. A Ghostly Undertaking by Tonya Kappes

What an Animal Reading Challenge

The requirements for What an Animal Reading Challenge are as follows - 
One of these elements must be present: 
1 - There is an animal in the title of the book
2 - There is an animal on the cover of the book
3 - An animal plays a major role in the book
4 - A main character is (or turns into) an animal (define that however you'd like). 

It is being hosted at Socrates Book Reviews

There are 4 levels
1 - Read at least 6 books.
2 - Read 7 - 12 books
3 - Read 13 -  20 books
4 - Read 21+ books.

I will just try for level 1. 

  1. Goat Mountain by David Vann
  2. Love Me, Love Me Not by Alyxandra Harvey
  3. The Drowned Cities by Paola Bacigalupi
  4. Hollow City by Ransom Riggs

Books to Movie Reading Challenge

For the Book to Movie Challenge, you just have to read books that have been or are going to be made into movies,tv shows, or mini-series. Neither the book or the production has to be from 2016.  It is being hosted by ebookclassics.

Three book/movie adaptions that I am looking forward to in 2016 include Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children (Ransom Riggs), The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey) and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (Jane Austen/Seth Grahame-Smith)  I am partway through the Peculiar Children series and am interested in how they are going to do some of the special effects.  I have wanted to read The 5th Wave for quite awhile and hope to get it in before the movie comes out.  And for Pride and Prejudice and Zombies - who doesn't like a good zombie movie?  

Color Coded Reading Challenge

For the Color Coded Challenge, the color can either be in the title or the dominant color of the book. It is hosted at My Readers Block

Here are the rules:

*Read nine books in the following categories.
1. A book with "Blue" or any shade of Blue (Turquoise, Aquamarine, Navy, etc) in the title/on the cover. 
2. A book with "Red" or any shade of Red (Scarlet, Crimson, Burgandy, etc) in the title/on the cover.
3. A book with "Yellow" or any shade of Yellow (Gold, Lemon, Maize, etc.)in the title/on the cover.
4. A book with "Green" or any shade of Green (Emerald, Lime, Jade, etc) in the title/on the cover.
5. A book with "Brown" or any shade of Brown (Tan, Chocolate, Beige, etc) in the title/on the cover.
6. A book with "Black" or any shade of Black (Jet, Ebony, Charcoal, etc) in the title/on the cover.
7. A book with "White" or any shade of White (Ivory, Eggshell, Cream, etc) in the title/on the cover.
8. A book with any other color in the title/on the cover (Purple, Orange, Silver, Pink, Magneta, etc.).
9. A book with a word that implies color (Rainbow, Polka-dot, Plaid, Paisley, Stripe, etc.).  - For "implies color" the image implying color should dominate the cover--for instance a large rainbow, a field of flowers, or the image of a painter.  

*While reviews are not required, they can be posted at their Review Headquarters Page.

Women Challenge

This challenge is to read any kind of book authored by a woman.  
It is hosted at Peek a Book!


Level 1: BABY GIRL - read 5 books written by a woman author
Level 2: GIRLS POWER - read 6 to 15 books written by a woman author
Level 3: SUPER GIRL - read 16 to 20 books written by a woman author
Level 4: WONDER WOMAN - read 20+ books written by a woman author

She also asks that we list our three favorite woman authors.  These three were the first to come to mind:  Alex Kava, Emily Bronte, Veronica Rossi.

I am going to go for Girl Power!

  1. Brotherhood in Death by J.D. Robb
  2. Orhan's Inheritance by Aline Ohanesian
  3. Love Me, Love Me Not by Alyxandra Harvey
  4. How Willa Got Her Groove Back by Emily McKay
  5. Into the Dim by Janet B. Taylor
  6. A Ghostly Undertaking by Tonya Kappes

Read the Nobels Challenge

Simple concept - read a book authored by a Nobel Laureate.  This challenge is sponsored by Guiltless Reader @ Read the Nobels.  For a list of Laureates, see here.

  • Nobel dabbler: 1 to 3 books 
  • Nobel keener : 4 to 8 books 
  • Nobel enthusiast: 9 to 13 books 
  • Nobel devotee: 14 to 18 
  • Nobel zealot: More than 19

I am just going to be a dabbler this year.  

Read the Nobels 2016

New Authors Reading Challenge

The challenge - to find authors that are 'new-to-you' - they don't have to be debut authors.  It is being hosted at Literary Escapism.

There are no levels, so I think I will choose 15 new authors.  

After writing the review - links can be added here

Southern Literature Reading Challenge

For this challenge, books must have that Southern Literature "feel" (use your best judgement) and be set in one of the following states:
South Carolina
North Carolina
West Virginia

It is being hosted at The Introverted Reader

Level 1--C'mon in the house! Read 1-2 books.

Level 2--Pull up a seat and stay a while! Read 3-4 books

Level 3--Have a glass of sweet iced tea, honey. Read 5-6 books

Level 4--Y'all come back now, y'hear! Read 7-8 books

I am going to try for Level 2 - Pull up a seat and stay awhile!

Southern Literature Reading Challenge hosted at The Introverted Reader

  1. Only Love Can Break Your Heart by Ed Tarkington

Cloak and Dagger Reading Challenge

Books for this challenge need to be in the mystery, suspense, thriller or crime genres. These are some of my favorite genres, so I had to join this challenge.  It is hosted by Stormi @ Books, Movies, Reviews! Oh My! and Barb @ Booker T's Farm. 

1-10 books – Amateur sleuth
11-20 books – Detective
21-30 books – Inspector
31+ books – Special agent
I will just be doing the Amateur Sleuth level. 

  1. Brotherhood in Death by J.D. Robb
  2. A Ghostly Undertaking by Tonya Kappes

Cover Reveal: The Society by Jodie Andrefski

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Cover Reveal: Her Australian Hero by Margaret Way

Title: Her Australian Hero 
Author: Margaret Way 
Publisher: Lyrical Press 
Genre: Contemporary Romance 
Format: Ecopy

“If you’ve never read Margaret Way before, you’re in for a treat.” —New York Times bestselling author Diana Palmer 

An epic tale of modern day Australia, where greed, desire, tragedy, and ambition collide . . .

Alexandra Ross has always known Lavender Hill will be hers one day. The grand old house, with its waving jacaranda fronds circling around it like a canopy against the white-hot Australian sun. The acres of orchards, trees heavy with sweet-smelling mangoes and prickly pink lychee. The rushing emerald creek that claimed her brother’s life; the genteel boudoir where her mother died of grief, gin, and stroke. Even the quad bike her bullheaded father uses to tear around the plantation like a teenager, as his covetous young wife plays tea party with Alex’s mother’s favorite china.
Someday Alex will undo her father’s blunders and be the good neighbor her childhood friend Rafe Rutherford deserves. The yearning she feels for Rafe can never overcome the heartbreak they’ve lived through together, but at least she will have his companionship.

Until her father is killed and the plantation is divided. If she wants to keep the land she loves Alex must break free of guilt and hesitation. And once she begins to fight for what her heart desires, there’s no telling where she’ll stop . . .

 photo addtogoodreadssmall_zpsa2a6cf28.png photo B6096376-6C81-4465-8935-CE890C777EB9-1855-000001A1E900B890_zps5affbed6.jpgB&N292865-apple-ibooks-logo

About the Author: USA Today bestselling author Margaret Way has written more than 130 books, many of them International Bestsellers. She has been published in 114 countries and 34 languages. Her novels are set in her beloved Australia, where she was born and lives to this day. Her stories always contain the beauty and rugged nature of the rural and Outback Australia, as well as the rainforests and coral reefs of Northern Queensland.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

2016 Audiobook Challenge

I listen to books in my car and while I am walking on the treadmill.  Just recently I also learned that I can stream my phone through my car - so that has increased my audiobook time also!  This challenge is hosted by The Book Nympho and Hot Listens

  • Newbie (I’ll give it a try) 1-5
  • Weekend Warrior (I’m getting the hang of this) 5-10
  • Stenographer (can listen while multi-tasking) 10-15
  • Socially Awkward (Don’t talk to me) 15-20
  • Binge Listener (Why read when someone can do it for you) 20-30
  • My Precious (I had my earbuds surgically implanted) 30+
  • Marathoner (Look Ma No Hands) 50+
I will be trying Stenographer for this challenge. 

2016 Alphabet Soup Reading Challenge

This is always a fun challenge as most of your books will fit this one!  You can drop the A's and The's from the beginning of the title. 

Each Letter Counts As 1 Spoonful
spoon 1

The first main word needs to start with the letter you are using for the challenge.  Q, X and Z can be found anywhere in the title though. 

2016 Monthly Motif Reading Challenge

For this challenge, each month is assigned a certain motif or theme. Your task is to read one book per month that fits in with the motif for that particular month.   It is hosted by Tanya at GirlXOXO

There will be a linky put up the beginning of each month that will remain open until the 10th day of the following month. 

The Motifs

JANUARY- Who Dunnit?
Crack the case and solve the mystery with your first book of the year.
Brotherhood in Death by J.D. Robb
FEBRUARY- New Releases
Read a book released in the last year.
Orhan's Inheritance by Aline Ohanesian
MARCH- Take a Trip
Time Travel or read a book set in a country different than where you live
Into the Dim by Janet B. Taylor
APRIL- Best of the Best
Read a book that has won recognition or a literary award
MAY- Story of Survival
Make it out alive, beat the odds, save yourself stories. Try thinking beyond the typical wilderness survival. Surviving high school? Surviving a family road trip? Yep- those count too! PS. Dystopians would work great in this motif too.
JUNE- Girlxoxo Recommends
We’ve read a lot of great books. Check out our archives and pick one of our recommendations off our book lists.
Hilarious memoirs, silly chick lit, comedic scifi. Pick a book that is guaranteed to make you laugh out loud.
AUGUST- Genre Jumble
Read from a genre that you don’t normally read from
SEPTEMBER- Steampunk, Science Fiction, and Fantasy
Pretty self explanatory and loads of great books to pick from in this motif.
OCTOBER- Things That Go Bump in The Night
Cozy mystery ghost stories, paranormal creeptastic, murder mystery- it’s up to you!
NOVEMBER- Fiction Takes A Break
It’s all about Nonfiction November this month!
DEC- That’s a Wrap
Finish a series you’ve been meaning to finish or read the next book in a series you started but never finished.

2016 Dystopia Reading Challenge

Dystopia is one of my favorite genres to read, so joining this challenge was a no brainer for me.  It is hosted by Tracy @ Cornerfolds and Claudia @ My Soul Called Life.   

Some rules: 

  • There are badges that you will receive for completing each level of the challenge. 
  • Quarterly Giveaways
  • Dystopia prompts (optional) and review links. 
  • Monthly Dystopia Newsletter. 
  1. Recruit (1-5 books)
  2. Rebel (6-10 books)
  3. Revolutionist (11-15 books)
  4. Leader (16+ books)
I am gonna try to be a Rebel!

Important Dates:

  • March 25th - First Quarter Update & Giveaway
  • June 24th - Second Quarter Update & Giveaway
  • September 30th - Third Quarter Update & Giveaway
  • December 30th - Challenge Wrap-Up & Giveaway

Monthly Linkups
Dystopian Book Lists

2016 TBR Pile Reading Challenge

My TBR pile was so huge, that I had to clean them out and pass some on without reading them last fall.  I packed up and donated 15 boxes of books -- yes, that was not a typo - 15 boxes...  And in looking at all the books I still have, you wouldn't know I got rid of any.  (Hint to husband -- more shelves. . .)

Anyway, this challenge is to read those TBR books that are still collecting dust in various places in my house.  It is being hosted by Evie @ Bookish Lifestyle.

Some rules I wanted to note:

  • There will be a wrap up post every other month on the last Monday of that month. 
  • There will be giveaways but you must follow Bookish to enter.
  • Use #2016TBRPile in messages. 
  • They are also having a TBR Pile Book Club, but you do not have to join it to do their challenge. 

  • 1-10 A Firm Handshake
  • 11-20 A Friendly Hug
  • 21-30 First Kiss
  • 31-40 Sweet Summer Fling
  • 41-50 Could This Be Love?
  • 50+ Married with Children
I will be attempting the first level only - as new releases don't count, I will be doing those this year as well. 

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Cover Reveal: Heartland by Sara Walter Ellwood

Title: Heartland 
Author: Sara Walter Ellwood 
Publisher: Lyrical Shine 
Genre: Contemporary Romance 
Format: Ecopy

Sex, drugs, and country music. That was the lifestyle for Emily Kendall, a Texas girl who hit it big on the country music charts--until she found herself pregnant and battling addiction. Now out of rehab and seeking a new life for herself and her unborn child, Emily returns to her hometown of McAllister. The last thing she's looking for is trouble, no matter how good it looks in uniform. . .

A widower, single father, and former Army Ranger struggling with PTSD, Sheriff EJ Cowley has his own demons to battle while keeping folks safe. The last thing he needs is a troubled celebrity speeding through town in her bright red Mazerati. But when someone from Emily's past threatens her safety and the peace of McAllister, EJ has no choice but to protect her. And soon both will learn there's more to the other than meets the eye. And that wounded hearts can love again. . .

 photo addtogoodreadssmall_zpsa2a6cf28.png photo B6096376-6C81-4465-8935-CE890C777EB9-1855-000001A1E900B890_zps5affbed6.jpgB&N292865-apple-ibooks-logo  

sara-walter-ellwood-7About the author: Although Sara Walter Ellwood has long ago left the farm for the glamour of the big town, she draws on her experiences growing up on a small hobby farm in West Central Pennsylvania to write her contemporary westerns. She’s been married to her college sweetheart for over 20 years, and they have two teenagers and one very spoiled rescue cat named Penny. She longs to visit the places she writes about and jokes she’s a cowgirl at heart stuck in Pennsylvania suburbia. Sara Walter Ellwood is a multi-published and international Amazon bestselling author of the anthology set Cowboy Up

She also writes paranormal romantic suspense under the pen name of Cera duBois.

Monday, January 11, 2016

COVER REVEAL: In the After by Elisa Dane

In the After
Published by: Swoon Romance
Publication date: February 2nd 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult

     Sadie Reynolds is a liar with secrets. At school, she’s part of the popular crowd known as AE, despite being broken inside. She hides it well. She has to. The slightest bit of imperfection will land her in the same shoes as her Geeky neighbor named Ian.
     Ian and his only friend are the object of Sadie’s friends’ ridicule, ire, and entertainment. The AE rule the school with intimidation and retribution against anyone who would dare question their supremacy.
     Sadie steers clear of most of it, terrified someone will find out her secret. She isn’t the least bit perfect. In fact, she suffers from PTSD stemming from the murder of her mother right before her eyes when she was a child. She can barely cope from day-to-day, hiding her truth and trying to fit in. But she knows it’s only a matter of time.
     Hayden is a “Waverly,” a kid with the misfortune of living in the small farming town of Waverly that borders the very affluent Lexington Parrish. The AE doesn’t mix with “Waverlies.” Ever.
     Desperate to get away from her oppressive friends, Sadie crashes into Hayden at a bonfire and the attraction that sparks between them is nothing short of electric. But Hayden’s an outsider and when things heat up, Sadie will be forced to choose between her friends and her new boyfriend.
Only Queen Bee Britt isn’t having it. She will not allow Sadie to cross her. Sadie can either do what Britt wants her to do or she will reveal Sadie for the PTSD freak that she is.
     Sadie does some soul searching about who she is and who she wants to be. She can’t live her life like this. Not any more. One fateful night will help her see how much things have to change.
     She’s determined to no longer allow the AE to rule her life. She will be strong, stand up for Ian and love who she wants in Hayden. Determined and invigorated, Sadie goes to school feeling hopeful for the first time in forever.
But, the unthinkable happens.
     Shooters attack dozens of students before the two eventually take their own lives, leaving the school a decimated shadow of what it once was.
Suddenly who lives where, wears what or loves whom seems like the least of Lexington Parish’s problems as everyone and everything changes forever in the after.

IN THE AFTER by Elisa Dane is a hard-hitting and heart-warming story of tragedy, love, loss and redemption. It is recommended for readers 14+.

Author Bio:
     ELISA DANE is a self-proclaimed book junkie. A lover of handbags, chocolate, and reality television, she's a proud mother to three All- Star cheerleaders. Writing is her absolute passion, and it's her mission to create stories that will not only take you on a romantic journey that will warm your heart, but help you find a new respect and interest in the sport of All-Star cheerleading.
     Elisa is no stranger to the publishing world. She writes steamy paranormal romance under her real name, Lisa Sanchez. Her adult works include the Hanford Park series (Eve Of Samhain, Pleasures Untold, and Faythe Reclaimed), Obsessed (an erotic suspense), and a paranormal novella, Cursing Athena. Elisa lives in Northern California with her husband, three daughters, and a feisty Chihuahua who stubbornly believes she's human.

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