Saturday, July 28, 2018

Summer Reading Progress .. And Dewey's Readathon.

Hello all. This will be just a quick update of my future reading plans, my past reading conquests and the coming end to my whirlwind readathons.

I am continuing to read for the #HSReadathon which is a laid back readathon that lasts all of July.  As July is coming to an end, so too is this readathon, but not before Christmas in July happens!

Xmas in July RAT

This month is just flying by!  I had some great time off, and spent most of it with my family and just enjoying life.  The "Big C" has affected me close to home and two people I love dearly have fought and beat it, but there are still battle scars to contend with.  You don't go through a fight like that and come out unscathed.  My outlook has also been changed, some for the good, and some for the worse, but I am working towards more for the good!

That being said, Christmas in July is just what the Dr. (Michelle) ordered for me.  I am lightly participating in the Dewey's Reverse readathon, as to go all out, would mean I would not be ready to head out to the lake on Monday, which I believe I need to ground myself.  It is my last hurrah before going back to work, and I am going to enjoy every minute.  So, I have picked two reads, that I will try to complete before #HSReadathon comes to an end.  Here are my picks....

The Christmas Joy Ride by Melody Carlson


The Christmas Joy Ride by Melody Carlson is a fun and heartwarming holiday story. Joy has planned a trip across country--one problem--she's 85 years old. Problem solved--Miranda, out of work and soon to be out of a home, agrees to go with her neighbor in a Christmas decked out RV! Let the adventure begin. No one captures the heartwarming fun of the Christmas season quite like Melody Carlson. Fasten your seat belt, because it's going to be an exciting ride!  I am really looking forward to this one!

The other entry for Christmas in July if I get that far is :

The Christmas Caramel Murder by Joanne Fluke.. because... who doesn't like a little mystery at Christmas?


"The holidays have arrived, and Hannah and her good pal Lisa have agreed to provide all the goodies for the town's annual production of A Christmas Carol. But before anyone can say "Bah, humbug!" a Santa-sized sackful of trouble ensues.  A little light Christmas reading.

Update on the #24in48, I read something like 15 or 16 hours.  Can't remember exactly and finished 3 books!  That has to be a record for me. Reviews to follow, of course. It was fun, but I must remind myself to go to sleep.  I was recovering from that one for a couple of days.  I am ready for the next one on January 26th and 27th 2019!  Bring it on!

This was a slightly shorter post, but I will try to tie everything together in the coming days.  Keep reading all, and enjoy the summer!

Friday, July 20, 2018

24 in 48 Readathon TBR List and Schedule

Good evening all you readathoners.  It is the eve before the frenzy of reading we all look forward to.  We plan for this night for weeks and it can't get here too soon. Some of you have already started your readathon in your time zone.  In my time zone, the readathon starts in a little over three hours.  I have finally settled on what I am going to read, finish reading and when I am going to do it.  So without any more ado, I present to you my TBR list and schedule for the #24in48 Summer 2018 Readathon.

  1. The Chairman's Toys by Graham Reed

ChairmansToys_Website-350x525_BorderThis is a mystery unlike any other I have had the pleasure of reading.  I flipped through the first few pages and I know I am going to like what I see.  Looking forward to devouring this one pretty quickly.

2.  The Death Cure by James Dashner

Death CureThis book is number three in the series and I'm pretty excited to see where this adventure will lead.  Should be an easy entertaining read in those wee hours of the morning.

3.  The Deep by Nick Cutter

headline-the-deep-180882980Can't have a readathon without a good old scary book in my back pocket.  Not sure what this one will be like , but looking forward to it.

And finally, my schedule.  The schedule is just a guide but it always helps me keep on track and when my brain is a little too tired to add the hours together, this is always here as a back up.

24in48 Schedule

One more thing.  I am using an app called ReadTracker  to help me keep track of my hours read as well.  I will be posting regularly on Twitter.  Join me and any kind words you would like to offer would be appreciated.  Have a great weekend and I hope all of you read until your heart is content!

Thursday, July 19, 2018

High Summer Readathon Mid-event Check-in

It has been a busy, hot, family filled, wonderful summer so far this July.  Not a lot has been planned, but family time together has been on an upward swing and I must admit, it has been wonderful.  Below is the view from my back deck.  Early in the morning, before anyone else is up, I enjoy the smell of coffee brewing, birds singing, warm breeze on my face, and a Kobo in my hand.  In the evening, my wife will snuggle up to me, as we watch the sun set on another beautiful summer day, sipping on a glass of Sangria.  Yes. Summer vacations are awesome.IMG_20180706_1950169(2)

So here is my mid event update for the High Summer Readathon so far....

high summer 2018

I did manage to finish The Maze Runner, and the Scorch Trials.  Both books were fantastic to read.  We celebrated my reading completions, by watching the movies, based upon said books.  The first one was a movie masterpiece that definitely gave the book its due.  Well done movie, that stayed true to the characters and story line that made the series so popular.

Maze Runner Series

The second movie installment took us on such a different story arc ,that it deviated from the book to the point that I didn't enjoy the movie as much at all.  I expected a similar retelling of the story as in the first book, but it was far from that.  I expect, if I had seen the movie first, and then read the book, it would have been fine, but  having said that, I can't even say I was disappointed.  The movie was well done, and took a road that the book didn't.  The book however... was much better. We will see where the third book will take me.  The Death Cure is up next after my current read.

My current read is from who I believe is a Canadian author named Graham Reed.  This ARC was sent to me a week ago and it was love at first read.  It is titled The Chairmans Toys and I can hardly wait to post the review for this one.  I am totally intrigued and only a few pages in.  This one will be fun.


Moving forward... in addition to partaking in the High Summer Readathon, there are two other readathons that I am interested in participating in during the month of July.   The 24 in 48 and Dewey's.  There's the 24in48 Readathon this weekend, July 21 and 22. Then there's the Dewey's 24 Hour Reverse Summer Readathon starting Friday, July 27 at 7 pm CT and ending Saturday, July 28 at 7 pm CT.  I have confirmation that my sister will be joining me  from the good ol USofA on both readathons this time around, and my wife will be reading alongside me as well, although not participating in the thons, just moral support.  There is still plenty of time to join in either of these readathons and even time to join in the High Summer Readathon.  You'll be glad you did.

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Next step is to register for both readathons and get my TBR list and schedule together .. (I honestly love that part).  Stay tuned for both and more reviews to come as soon as I have some spare time.  :)  Happy reading all!


Sunday, July 8, 2018

Summer 2018 IS Here!

The days we have all longed for, are finally here.  Honey bees are buzzing in the backyard, temperatures soaring to the uncomfortably hot range, birds are singing, barbeques are sizzling, campgrounds are full,  lemonade on ice, school is out, vacations have started..... ahhhh ....summer.... my third favorite time of the year, won over only by autumn, which I believe to be the pinnacle season of every year, and of course Christmas... but we won't go there...just yet.

Back to summer!  My holidays have started and I have lofty plans for the few days that I am off.  I get to spend time with my family, which is always awesome.  As some of you may know, my wife has been battling cancer for the last two years, and I am happy to say this story has a happy ending.  She fought, and won the battle, so we are using this summer as a spring-board to the future.  As you can well imagine, your life is put on hold, and nothing else matters when you are dealing with the likes of cancer.  Moving forward, however is not easy.  Slowly, baby steps, is the best way, and we are doing exactly that.  Time with family and friends is the number one goal this summer, along with healthy choices, in all aspects of our life.

With that being said, I am going to also continue doing what grounds me and what has kept me sane through all of this.  Reading.  I find it is therapeutic and helps me find my down time when I need it most.  This year I almost missed the High Summer Readathon

high summer 2018

sign up, as work was crazy busy, but here I am, all signed up.  High Summer Readathon is a relaxed readathon hosted my Michelle Miller who creates and maintains the Seasons of Reading Blog.  There are readathons for all seasons, prizes, and some great people you will meet.  If you have a chance you should head on over and check it out.  The official dates are July 1 through July 31, starting at 12:00 am Sunday the 1st, and ending at 11:59 pm on Tuesday, the 31st. That's central time, but you can adjust your times according to your time zone.

Since I was able to join the readathon this year, I'm glad Michelle is not sticky on rules as I have not even created a TBR list.  I am totally unprepared, but I won't let that stop me.  :)  My son has been bugging me to read the Maze Runner series by James Dashner ,as he is now reading the fourth book himself.  I kept disregarding his suggestions, because I didn't think these books would actually keep me interested, least of all entertained.  After all, I read at such a higher level than that!  Guess what?  I really don't :) I read the Maze Runner and was absolutely surprised at the plot and character development that went into this story.  It is an easy read, which is nice, but now I am hooked on finishing this series , and hope to do it before my son does. (hehehehe)

Maze Runner Series

During this readathon, Michelle has thrown in a Christmas in July spin for the final four days of the readathon.  This of course is completely optional but really fun if you can pick the right book(s).  I am always looking for that perfect Christmas in July book to read, and have never find the one that satisfies me.  I started to look up some good books to try for the Christmas in July reading when Michelle posted a list of Christmas themed books for sale in the coming months.  Hmmmmm.  I wonder if this list comes out every year on her Christmas Blog?  And so, I found a very long list of books published last year, that I can peruse along with a synopsis of the story, so that I don't have to "settle" on one and hope for the best.  You can find that list here.  I will be set for Christmas in July this year.  Thanks Michelle!

Xmas in July RAT

With all of this going on, my other two favorite readathons are also happening in July.

The 24 in 48 Readathon is happening on July 21st, and Dewey's 24 hour readathon is happening July 28th! And for the first time ever, It is a reverse Readathon!!! Aaahhhhhhh!  What to do!

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First, I need to ask permission from my wife ;)   After all, life goes on when I am content, nose deep in books.  Secondly, I need to contact my sister in the USA to see if she is on board with Dewey's (we did it together last time).  And thirdly, decide if I want to commit to this much reading this summer.  I love to read, but it can be a solitary thing to do.  The timing is perfect as my holidays coincide with all of the dates.  I really want to do this.  It would be a perfect vacation getaway for me this summer.  As you can tell I am somewhat easily appeased :)

Stay tuned for part two of this blog to see what the next part of July will bring me!