In the beginning of October, I was in a wedding, with the rest of the month being dedicated to the final push of getting things ready before my move and editing another book.
In November, I finally moved. Because of the move, editing, and health issues, I decided not to participate in Nanowrimo last year. I don't regret my decision, but I am a little sad I didn't take part in Nanowrimo, as I had a lot of fun the three years I did (I wrote about my thoughts during my first Nanowrimo on this blog, if you want to check it out). I do hope to be able to participate this year.
Anyway, onto the reading update!
I was able to read quite a few books in October, including a brand new book by Gretchen Rubin.
1. The Four Tendencies*, by Gretchen Rubin
Gretchen Rubin builds on the ideas of the four tendencies she introduced in Better than Before, and gives a more detailed description of each, as well as how to deal with the tendencies in your life.
I didn't like it as much as her other books. Perhaps it was because the topic was introduced in her previous book, I felt like I had read it already, even though there was a ton of new content which I found interesting. It could be too that part of me questions the validity of the whole system (yeah, according to the system, I am a Questioner). It's an intriguing idea, and it's worthwhile to try out her tips for the tendency you appear to be, but I'd refrain from placing yourself into one of the "tendency molds."
I also question the actual statistics of tendency distribution. According to her, Obligers are the most common, followed by Questioners, Upholders, and finally Rebels (page 8). But the book doesn't say how the study was conducted or if it was solely based on the quiz she had on her website. Because unless there were no refusal rates from people asked to participate, how would you be able to get a true idea of the tendencies distribution? Obligers would be most likely to take it (resulting in the high amount recorded) but Questioners and Upholders might only take it if it fit with their agenda, and Rebels wouldn't be likely to take it at all.
2. Aurora Abroad, by Karen Kiefer
After her aunt attacks her home on her eighteenth birthday bent on destroying her, Aurora flees her pursuers while trying to come up with a way to rescue her imprisoned guardians. And trying not to strangle the obnoxious Emperor Lyric.
I love mashups of fairy tales. Karen Kiefer does a wonderful job combining different elements of fairy tales into one exciting story. While some of the humor is a little crude for my taste (such as what size leaf a man needs to cover his...ah...well, you know) and there were some swear words, it was still an enjoyable read.
3. Darkshore, by Megan Jendrick and Nathan Jendrick
The people of Darkshore has had a powerful nemesis over the millena: people of the fog known only as Icia, who lurk in the woods outside the village during the colder months and cannot be killed. It has become law that no one can enter the forest, because no one comes back alive. Until Noelle Overstar does. As she seeks to discover why these monsters can't kill her, she starts to unravel why exactly the Icia kill her people, and that they weren't always enemies...
This book was a little out there for me. It reminded me a little of Into the Trees, and the Nickelodeon series Avatar. And while the story itself was pretty good (if I ignore the "out there" elements), I was left a little confused as to who the book was for. Noelle is only thirteen, and while most of the time I think the author did a great job of keeping her actions and thoughts age appropriate, some of the monologues she has with herself seem a little too grown-up for such a young girl (maybe she was supposed to be a very mature thirteen-year-old?). And to me it read more like it was for an older teen to young adult.
4. Read No Evil, by Steven W. White
People can't stop talking about a new fantasy novel ebook. And while opinion is divided, with some loving the novel and others hating it, weird things seem to happen to those who read it, some catastrophic. When the ebook's effects start reaching into her high school English class, Jan Fitsgerald decides to look into this story her students are talking about while she still has students left.
Interesting concept, with the story being rather dark (I'm assuming it's borderline Dark Fantasy, but I'm not too familiar with that genre). There was some profanity sprinkled throughout the book, including F-bombs. I wish the author had done a better job of making sure character details stayed consistent (at first, Jan's sister is older than her, but then in the second half of the book she's younger than Jan).
5. The Princess, the Knight, and the Knave, by R. D. Ferguson
Matt has practiced magic since he was a young kid. Now as a teen trying to make it on his own as a magician, honing his skills are even more important. But when an evil wizard switches bodies and worlds with Matt, the fourteen year-old will have to unravel Crius's magic if he hopes to see his own world and body again.
It was a cute story that I deem appropriate for about nine years old and up. The story was engaging and while I didn't find the characters too unique, it was still fun to read about them. It could have used another edit though (in some places one character is called by a different character's name).
Those where all the books I read in October. As for November...well...I read about half of Les Miserable (I do not know if I'll be finishing it, considering my kindle copy seems not to open for me any more). As for how December went...well, I don't even remember if I cracked a book open that month.
So in conclusion: did I read 42 books? Yes, I read 45 total, at least according to my Goodreads. Did I finish my list? No, I still had a few on there because I found other books I wanted to read.
So would I do a reading challenge again? Yes, I had a lot of fun doing it. But I wouldn't give myself a list of books to read necessarily, as some of them I lost interest in before getting a chance to read them, and my list left little room for new books I learned of or that came out that year.
This year, I've set myself a smaller goal of 25, since I started the challenge late, and I'm hoping to get out two books this year (the first in a new series and the sequel to Thorn Changer!). I'm also hoping to post more on schedule on this blog (I'm aiming for every two weeks on Tuesday). And I've started posting again on my other blog.
Thanks for reading. Have you read any of these books? What did you think? Let me know in the comments!
*For the sake of brevity, I have not included the subtitles of these books.
Links to books may not be the same format, version, or edition that I read.