Posted in reading challenges

2019 Beat the Backlist

Almost all of my books are backlist because I don’t read a ton of new releases, buuuut… I have a lot of books. Like, a lot a lot. One of my resolution things for 2018 was to read my shelves, and I think over 50% of what I’ve read (probably closer to 75%) were books I already owned before the start of 2018, so yay!

Next year, I want to continue with that, and I’m officially joining Beat the Backlist.

If you don’t know what Beat the Backlist is, check out Novel Knight (the creator) and read up on it. Basically, read backlist titles (books published before 2019), and only books you start after the new year begins can count.

Also! There’s a mini-challenge to read to earn points for your Hogwarts house. I’m honestly pretty evenly split between Slytherin and Ravenclaw, but I feel like Ravenclaw is always the majority of people in any Hogwarts related reading challenge, so I’m signing up as a Slytherin 😛

My TBR choices below are completely random (I’m literally just looking at my shelves while I write this) and in no particular order. They’re also probably not the books I’ll end up reading, but I’m going to try. I’m picking 12 books, with the hopes of reading at least one of my backlist books each month next year.


This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab– I’ve read the Shades of Magic trilogy and Vicious, but I have both of the books in the Monsters of Verity duology on my shelf and I need to read them.

Life After Life by Kate Atkins– I’ve wanted to read this for ages, and it’s been on my shelf at least a year.

White Teeth by Zadie Smith– I think I’m the last person to read this one. I’ve heard great things, so I’m looking forward to it.

John Dies at the End by David Wong– I saw the movie and I think I remember liking it. The book has been chilling on my shelf for like two years, though, so I need to get to this one.

Fingersmith by Sarah Waters– This one hasn’t been on my shelf very long, but it’s been on my TBR for ages. I might save it for Tome Topple, if there’s one in the spring.

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel– I don’t even have an excuse for having not read this one, other than it’s location. It gets kind of hidden and I forget I actually did buy it.

Talon by Julie Kagawa– Funny story: I bought this for-freaking-ever ago and planned to read it ASAP. Then I entered a giveaway for the third book (I totally missed that it was the third, not second, oops) and won a copy. So, now I have books one and three, and I’ve been waiting for my library to have a copy of the second to read this one. Guess which books they have? The first and the third *headdesk*

Burial Rites by Hannah Kent– I want to read this so bad! I forgot I bought a copy because it somehow ended up smushed behind other books for months. I just found it while unhauling some things, and I feel like I might read it soon.

The Terror by Dan Simmons– I think I bought this one earlier this year, and I might save it for October. Probably not, but maybe.

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak– Yeah…I still haven’t read this one :/

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas– Ugh. I just want to get it over with. In all honesty, the only reason I’m even going to attempt this one is because I bought it. I read ACOTAR and was not a fan.

Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi– And another big-name, super-hyped book I have not read. (And have owned for years. Oops.)

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Posted in wrap up

September Wrap Up (Blogtober Begins!)

September was a rocky reading month for me, but I (finally) came out of a month pretty satisfied with my reading. The cursed slump was driven away, thanks to Gail Carriger’s Parasol Protectorate.

I’m really glad I saved finishing that series for so long, because without it, I’m not sure I ever would have clawed my way out of the slump. (That’s probably overly dramatic, but it’s how I felt 😛 )

In September, I finished eleven books, four fairy tales, and one short story.

september wrap up

The Fairy Tales

(Clicking the titles takes you to my Fairy Tales Fridays post for each of them.)

The Books

  • The entire Parasol Protectorate series (Soulless, Changeless, Blameless, Heartless, Timeless) by Gail Carriger
  • The Girl from the Well by Rin Chupeco
  • Haunted: Ten Tales of Ghosts edited by Rayne Hall
  • The Suffering by Rin Chupeco
  • Kill Creek by Scott Thomas (reviewed)
  • The Marble and Other Ghost Tales of Tennessee and Virginia by Joe Tennis
  • We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson

Short Stories

“The Cask of Amontillado” by Edgar Allan Poe


I totally won at R.I.P. 13, which I talked about in my first and second update posts. Since I’ve already succeeded with Peril the First (reading 4 books), my bigger focus for R.I.P. in October is going to be Peril of the Short Story and Peril on the Screen.

Over the weekend, there was a pre-FrightFall readathon, during which I read two books (the last two on my list above).

Lastly, I think I’ve been able to mark a couple of squares for Fall Bookish Bingo, yay!


I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty excited for October, and I really hope I get at least as much reading done this month as I did in September.

 

How was your September?

Did you read anything great?

Are you participating in any autumn or Halloween themed book events?

Posted in Uncategorized

R.I.P. XIII: Update the Second

(Check out the R.I.P. 13 page here, and my sign up post here.)

I’ve officially completed Peril the First, whoo!

That doesn’t mean I’m stopping, because I have several spooky books lined up for October, and other spooky challenges to participate in (like FrightFall which I just posted about earlier). I’m just shocked that I A) actually finished four books that fit, and B) have done so before October even started haha.

In my first update, I’d read two books and was working on a third (I ended up DNF’ing The Library at Mount Char…maybe some other time).

Since then, I’ve also finished:

  • The Suffering by Rin Chupeco (the sequel to The Girl in the Well), and I loved it I think as much as the first book, maybe more. I might post a combo review soon, but I gave it 4.5/5 stars.
  • Kill Creek by Scott Thomas (reviewed here) which…I didn’t love. 2/5 stars.

For Peril of the Short Story I read:

  • Haunted: Ten Tales of Ghosts edited by Rayne Hall which I gave 1/5 stars :/
  • Then I re-read “The Cask of Amontillado” by Edgar Allan Poe which I gave 4.5/5 stars (it’s not my favorite Poe story, but I really enjoy it).
  • I think The Marble and Other Ghost Tales of Tennessee and VIrginia by Joe Tennis counts. It’s a super short book (70 pages) of ghost stories from a small region of TN and VA. I just read it this morning and gave it 3.5/5 stars.

For Peril on the Screen:

I watched Happy Death Day. I’ve wanted to see this movie since I first saw previews last year(?) and I was not disappointed. I don’t want to say much about it, but I honestly loved it. Probably enough to buy it if I ever find it cheap.

I give this one 4.5/5 stars for being so much fun to watch, and because if I hadn’t spoiled myself accidentally by searching for something while watching it, I honestly wouldn’t have seen the ending coming. I might have figured out the “who,” but not the “how.”

If you like movies like Scream, April Fool’s Day, Heathers, Final Destination, maybe Final Girl, Black Christmas (the original, I don’t think I’ve seen the remake), and–of course–Groundhog Day, you might want to check this one out if you haven’t already.


I think that’s it for my R.I.P. updating, but there will be more coming next month, probably.

Posted in Uncategorized

FrightFall/Something Wicked This Fall Comes

Noooo, I forgot to post this earlier this week >_<

I completely missed my note to myself to check back on the Seasons of Reading blog to find out about signing up for these events, but I don’t think I’m actually too late, yet.

click to go to the sign up page

FrightFall runs throughout the month of October, and this year there’s also the Something Wicked This Fall Comes event (a read along of Something Wicked This Way Comes) going on over at Castle Macabre.

Basically, FrightFall is a spooky books readathon, but the only requirement is to read at least one book for the event.

I’ve been saving most of my horror, gothic lit, etc. for this event and it’s finally about to begin! (Actually, the pre-event readathon is currently happening this weekend.)

I’m most excited, I think, to dive into Something Wicked This Way Comes because I’ve been saving it for autumn since I bought it earlier this year, and then holding out for next month since the Something Wicked This Fall Comes post went up at the end of August.

Posted in Uncategorized

R.I.P.: Update the First + mini review of Hereditary (the movie)

We’re just over two weeks into R.I.P. 13, and I can finally post something about my progress, yay! (My sign up post.)

I’m not 100% sure if the Parasol Protectorate series by Gail Carriger counts (I mean, I’d classify it as “supernatural,” but I’m still not sure what the difference is between supernatural, preternatural, and paranormal, so…), but I am going to count it, but only as one thing, because it feels like cheating to count a whole series of five books for a challenge that I only need to read four books for.

image

Next, I read Rin Chupeco’s The Girl From the Well which solidly fits into the “horror” category. I really liked this one, and I want to read the sequel, and check out some translated Japanese horror stories at some point. I’m finding that my tastes in horror tends to be classic ghost stories (I’m also a big fan of true/”true” ghost stories), Gothic horror and Japanese stories (particularly ghostly ones).

Now I’m trying really hard to make myself finish The Library at Mount Char by Scott Hawkins, but…I’m really not loving this book. I’ve tried to read it a couple of times, and finally got about 50 pages into it earlier this year before giving up. I really want to read it and enjoy it, but it might just not be my thing. I like weird stuff, but I also like to have at least a tiny idea of wtf is going on :/

Will this one end up being my third book?

I have no clue. I’m around 20% into the story and just…bored. And frustrated. I rarely regret only spending a couple bucks on a book (I got this one on sale a while back), but I’m starting to regret this one, and I’m really thinking it might be a DNF.


And then there’s Peril On the Screen.

I usually save all horror-viewing this late in the year for October and my month-long binge, but I had a Redbox code, and the Redbox I use had Hereditary. I couldn’t help myself.

My thoughts on Hereditary are mixed. On one hand, I totally see why it was compared to The Witch. Neither are really scary, both have a sort of central theme of a family drama, and both deal with the occult (albeit in different ways).

I’ll try to keep this non-spoilery and brief.

  • I loved, loved, loved the camera work. Seriously, it was the best part of the movie imo.
  • I was not particularly surprised by anything in the big reveal. That’s the curse of being interested in the occult and watching five billion horror movies, I guess.
  • I didn’t really like or care about anyone in the movie, so what happened to them was just “eh” for me.
  • Nothing really scary happened. I mean, ok, if this were happening to my family, yeah…I’d be a bit freaked out. Mostly pissed off, but definitely a bit freaked. (Then again, if I wanted to contact a spirit, I sure as hell wouldn’t trust someone I didn’t really know to provide me with a way to do it.)
  • It was gory at times, but in a way that…worked. It wasn’t on the level of things like Saw or Hostel, for sure, but it had a few moments that were done pretty well.
  • I laughed my ass off towards the end with a thing that Annie (I think was her name) suddenly started doing after a thing involving fire. I’m trying to be vague here so I don’t spoil anything :/
  • The ending was really weird, but not bad. Just weird. I have completely neutral feelings about it.
  • My feelings about how it kind of makes you think it could be mental illness, or it could be supernatural, and you’re not sure which for much of the film, are mixed at best. On the one hand, I think it works. On the other hand, I am so sick of people with MI being thrown under buses for anything and everything, including horror stories.
  • I liked The Witch way more, but I would totally watch this again if it ever comes to Netflix and I’m bored.
  • This is one I might recommend to fans of things like Paul Tremblay’s A Head Full of Ghosts, Rosemary’s Baby (book or movie), The Wicker Man (1973), and maybe The Haunting of Hill House by Shirly Jackson and the movie Orphan.
  • I would also suggest looking up trigger warnings before watching it.

I’d give the movie a 3/5 rating, but this is another one that just didn’t scare me like I’d hoped it would. I think I might have liked it more if I’d liked at least some of the characters, but I was indifferent to them all.

However, it has a nice vibe and I didn’t hate it. I just didn’t like it enough to buy it.


And that’s it for now, I guess. I’m not sure how often I’ll post about R.I.P. from now until it ends, on October 31st. It might be kind of random, it might be weekly. We’ll just have to wait and see.

If you’re participating, tell me about what you’re reading and/or watching, or leave a link to your sign up post so I can check it out 🙂