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2019 Series Goal. How did I do and where do I go from here?

My main goal for 2019 was to either catch-up, finish or DNF series that I have already started.  I have a real issue with finishing series, I am not sure why I just do.  I did not have any structure around this goal just that I needed to get it done.  I didn’t make a list since I knew that it would put extra pressure around it that I just didn’t need. I have to say I am pleasantly surprised by the results. I did better than I thought I would and I feel much better going into this year knocking some more out.  For this year I make a list of some of the series that I would like to get to this year, knowing I will not get to them all. Did I mention that I have a huge problem with this.

Now some of these series have sat on my shelves for way too long. And as a result, my reading tastes have changed over the years so it just came time to remove them from my shelves.  Bonus when I sold them I was able to put the money towards Christmas.

Series I have finished: (7)

Air Awakens Series by Elise Kova
Parasol Protectorate Series by Gail Carriger
Charlotte Holmes Series by Brittany Cavallaro
Stalking Jack the Ripper Series by Kerri Maniscalco
Kingdom on Fire Series by Jessica Cluess
The Custard Protocol Series by Gail Carriger
Pottermore Presents Series by J.K. Rowling

Series I have caught up on: (6)

Wayward Children Series by Seanan McGuire
An Ember in the Ashes Series by Sabaa Tahir
Shadow of the Fox Series by Julie Kagawa
The Bohemians Series by Jessica Bucher
Monstress Series by Marjorie M. Liu
Lady Mechanika Volumes Series by Joe Benítez

Series I have read that only the first book is out: (3)

The Scarred Earth Saga by G.A. Aiken
Bow Street Bachelors Series by Kate Bateman
A League of Extraordinary Women Series by Evie Dunmore

Series I DNF’d (some had decisions had to be made – 14)

Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan
The Witcher Series by Andrzej Sapkowski
Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas
A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness
Midnight, Texas Series by Charlaine Harris
Daughter of Smoke & Bone Series by Laini Taylor
Spectacle Series by Jodie Lynn Zdrok
Order of Darkness Series by Philippa Gregory
Realm of Elestra by Rebekah Dodson
Song For A Lost Kingdom Series by Steve Moretti
Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children Series by Ransom Riggs
The Folk of the Air Series by Holly Black
Rime Chronicles Series by Mindee Arnett
The Witchlands Series by Susan Dennard

I am happy to share with you the absurd list that I have that I would like to get to this year. Sadly this is not all of the started series on my shelves.  These are all books that I already own. I do know that some of these series will have books coming out this year but you will not see them here because these are all books that are currently sitting on my shelves needing read.

Flame in the Mist Duoogy by Renee Ahdieh
Smoke in the Sun

The Falconer Trilogy by Elizabeth May
The Vanishing Throne
The Fallen Kingdom

Steampunk Red Riding Hood Series by Melanie Karsak
Howls and Hallows
Lycans and Legends

The Extraordinary Adventures of the Athena Club by Theodora Goss
The Sinister Mystery of the Mesmerizing Girl

Lady Helen by Alison Goodman
Lusus Naturae: A Lord Carlston Story
The Dark Days Pact
The Dark Days Deceit

Book of the Ancestor by Mark Lawrence
Grey Sister
Bound
Holy Sister

The Daevabad Trilogy by S. A. Chakraborty
The Kingdom of Copper

The Conqueror’s Saga by Kiersten White
Now I Rise
Bright We Burn

The Shadow and Bone Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo
Siege and Storm
Ruin and Rising

The Last Apprentice by Joseph Delaney
Wrath of the Bloodeye
A Coven of Witches
Clash of the Demons
Rise of the Huntress
Rage of the Fallen
Grimalkin the Witch Assassin
Lure fo the Dead
Slither
I am Alice
Fury of the Seventh Son
The Spooks Bestiary

Some of these series I just started last year and I want to finish them before they sit of years.

How are you with finishing series?  Let me know in the comments below if you have any thoughts on these books.

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Uncategorized

2020 Goals

2020 Goals

This is going to be a long one so grab a cup of tea or your preferred drink and settle in. 

I have decided to approach 2020 a little differently.  I am determined to make this year great so instead of jumping in headfirst I am going to wade in.  If I’m honest 2019 was not the greatest year for me in general. I went in with all of these plans and grand ideas only to fall flat.  I have been reflecting on this for the past few weeks to see where I went wrong and what I can do differently. Yes, there were a lot of factors that played into it like my daughter’s active music schedule, not having a job then changing jobs, and so on but that is life and I need to find a way to work with all of this crazy if I want to succeed.  

As I watched everyone put up their goals for the new year and picking their words, I honestly became overwhelmed. But then it all came to me. I fell flat because I  try to do way too much too fast and I burn myself out it’s not a matter of motivation but I literally exhaust myself and end up sick, which in turn forces me to rest and I fall behind. 

I also realized that I have created a lot of bad habits that I need to fix before I can successfully move forward. Which brings me to my plan. Instead of picking a word for the whole year to live by I am breaking it down to picking a word per month.  This way I can build on what I accomplish and I do not overwhelm myself if things do not go as fast as I want them to. This is driven by my main personal goal this year: To take care of myself. I know this seems obvious to most but when things get tough, that is the first thing to go and I need to make me/my health a priority or I am not doing anyone any good.

My word for January is:  Reset

I need to stop and reset all of the bad habits and begin making them back into good ones.  I know from experience that you can not just say I’m not going to do _____ anymore and have it miraculously work. So this month I am focusing on figuring out what I need to fix (I fix one thing and three more come to the surface) and approaching it without the added stress of a hard deadline. I never give myself enough time and that is one of the reasons I fail.  They say it takes two months to create a habit, so I am going to take this one day at a time.

I am breaking down my 2020 Goals down to four categories General, Personal, Blog, and Reading.

Personal 

  • Take better care of myself:
    • Losing 8 more pounds (this is really important to me because if I accomplish this there is a chance that my diabetes will go away.)
    • Eat Breakfast every day. A real breakfast not junk.
    • Drink my daily water.
  • Create Morning and Evening Routines. If you have any ideas I am all ears.
  • Watch at least 1 SkillShare class a week. 
  • Use my Start Today Journal Daily
  • Use my Bullet Journal Daily
  • Engage with people more

General

  • Controlled Spending (goal is to pay off debt)
    • Book Purchases – 2 a month (this is outside of BOTM YA and Audible)
      If I do not buy 2 books that month they can roll over to the next month
  • Use all of the candles I currently own before I start buying more. (This has always been a big issue in the past I really love candles)
  • Use Coupons – Check weekly and before shopping trips
  • Online Shopping – Only do from home (when feasible) – so I can take advantage of Honey and Swagbucks (plus this gives me time to think on the purchase and decide if I actually need it.)
  • Do Surveys: Pinecone, I-say, Paidview point, etc.
  • Work on eliminating fast food (big money suck)
  • Attend String Association Meetings (horrible parent I don’t think I have attended one yet.)
  • Attend Band Meetings (I stared finally attending these again a few months ago.)

Blog

  • Update the look of my blog
    • Find a Theme that I like (I have been wanting to do this for about 9 months but just never committed to anything so it’s time that I do it.)
    • Update with new header etc when I get them (I commissioned these a little while ago)
    • Create a better schedule for updating site pages (I want to start doing this on a weekly basis)
  • Cross-reference Reviews more timely (I want to do this the day they are posted or weekly)
  • Try to not take on more than 1 review book a month (I took on way too many in October and burned myself out. I am still feeling it.)
  • Post at least 3 times a week
  • Be more active on Social Media ( I really struggle because I have an issue with comparing myself with everyone else. Working on that)

Reading

  • Get my Physical TBR to 175 (I hope that I will get this number down much lower but I am being realistic with how I feel right now.
  • Get my E-Book TBR to 50
  • Catch up on more Series (I was surprised how I did last year so I am hoping to do good this year too.)
  • Clean out my shelves at least once a quarter and take books to sell (if I play this right I won’t be spending too much out of pocket for books which helps with my spending.)
  • DNF if I do not like a book (I put way too much pressure on myself to finish books I’m not feeling.)

So there you have it those are the start of my goals for 2020.  I know I want to start an exercise routine of some kind even if it’s just some time on the treadmill I just need to figure out where to block that out but that will come.  Baby steps.

If you have stayed for all of this you are wonderful.  If you would like to talk about any of it or tell me what your plans are for 2020 talk to me in the comments below or if you want message me on another platform.

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Reviews

Review: Timeless by Gail Carriger

Book Review

Timeless
Timeless
by Gail Carriger
Parasol Protectorate #5
Steampunk, Historical Romance, Paranormal
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Synopsis
Alexia Tarabotti, Lady Maccon, has settled into domestic bliss. Of course, being Alexia, such bliss involves integrating werewolves into London High society, living in a vampire’s second best closet, and coping with a precocious toddler who is prone to turning supernatural willy-nilly.

Until, that is, she receives a summons that cannot be ignored. With husband, child, and Tunstells in tow, Alexia boards a steamer to cross the Mediterranean. But Egypt may hold more mysteries than even the indomitable Lady Maccon can handle. What does the vampire Queen of the Alexandria Hive really want from her? Why is the God-Breaker Plague suddenly expanding? And how has Ivy Tunstell suddenly become the most popular actress in all the British Empire?

TIMELESS is the final book of the Parasol Protectorate series: a comedy of manners set in Victorian London, full of werewolves, vampires, dirigibles, and tea-drinking.

Read-along
Midway through 2018, I decided that I wanted to read the books from Gail Carriger’s Parasolverse in chronological order. This led me to start the journey of the Parasolverse Read-Along in August 2018. If you would like more information about the read-along please visit my post about it here. At the beginning of each month, I will have a brief read-along post go up letting you know what the book for that month is.

What I thought

Well, we made it to the end of this series, and it was quite a ride. Alexia is one of a kind and I love her. If this is the first review you are seeing for this series here are the links for the other books in the series: Soulless | Changeless | Blameless | Heartless.

As we head into this book two years have passed by since the end of Heartless and the Macons have settled into their life in London society as much as a werewolf and a Preternatural can. Now I know I always try to leave out spoilers; however its really hard to talk even a little about the fifth book in a series without spoiling something so I will give you one more non-spoilery thought then on to some random spoiler thoughts.  I am making them short so hopefully to not completely spoil the ending of the book.  As this series ended I did not feel like I was left hanging.  Yes, there are things that I want more of but I feel satisfied with the ending Gail gave us.

***SPOILERS***

I am not satisfied with whatever ending Felicity received she is such a selfish, conniving little twit. How dare she do that. (Stomps foot for effect)

Sidheag really needs to learn to control her temper! But man that girls got stamina.

Lyall and Biffy is the cutest couple ever! (I need more of this in my life)

Who would have thought Floote would have been on his own mission?

Ivy in charge of fashion.  Oh, the hats.

And lastly, since reading this book I have had the song “Who Wants to Live Forever” stuck in my head. Poor Matakara.

Now this song makes me want to watch Highlander again.

So tell me your thoughts have you read this series?

My Rating: /55 StarsFollow me on other platforms:
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Wrap Up

April 2019 Wrap-up

Good Morning Everyone,

This month I was able to finish 9 books. I ended up not ‘finishing’ the O.W.L.s readathon. I did complete enough classes to fall into two career paths: Herbologist and Hogwarts Professor. So I will count that as a win.

Books Read: 9
Books DNF’d: 1
Total Pages Read: 789
Total Audio Hours: 46:16

Now to break that down  a little more

Backlist Books: 5
Added to my TBR in 2019: 3
Borrowed: 1

2019 Goals (only this months numbers)
Finish or catch up on 3 Series: 0
10 Books I want to read in 2019: 1
Read 3 Tomes: 0
Read more backlist books: Yes

Year-end 2019 Goals
Finish or catch up on 3 Series: 0/3
10 Books I want to read in 2019: 2/10
Read 3 Tomes: 3/3 
Read more backlist books: 21/36

Short Stories from Hogwarts of Heroism, Hardship and Dangerous Hobbies by J.K. Rowling | 5 Stars | Add to Goodreads
Heartless by Gail Carriger | 4 Stars | Add to Goodreads
Hogwarts: An Incomplete and Unreliable Guide by J.K. Rowling | 5 Stars | Add to Goodreads

Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones | 3 Stars | Add to Goodreads
Alphas and Airships by Melanie Karsak | 4.5 Stars | Add to Goodreads
The Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America’s Shining Women by Kate Moore | 5 Stars | Add to Goodreads

The Dark Days Club by Alison Goodman | 5 Stars | Add to Goodreads
Flame in the Mist by Renée Ahdieh | 5 Stars | Add to Goodreads
I am Drusilla by Lucille Moncrief | 3.5 Stars | Add to Goodreads

How was your reading in April?

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Memes · TBR

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? May 6, 2019

It's Monday What are you reading.png

Good Morning!

It’s the start of another week. It’s Monday! What are you Reading is hosted by Kathryn from Book Date, this is a weekly event to share what we’ve read in the past week and what we hope to read, plus whatever else comes to mind.

Last Weeks Books
The Beast's Heart

The Beast’s Heart by Leife Shallcross
4.5 Stars
Add to Goodreads

I am neither monster nor man—yet I am both.

I am the Beast.

The day I was cursed to this wretched existence was the day I was saved—although it did not feel so at the time.

My redemption sprung from contemptible roots; I am not proud of what I did the day her father happened upon my crumbling, isolated chateau. But if loneliness breeds desperation then I was desperate indeed, and I did what I felt I must. My shameful behaviour was unjustly rewarded.

My Isabeau. She opened my eyes, my mind and my heart; she taught me how to be human again.

And now I might lose her forever.

Tales from the Front
Tales from the Front
by Elise Kova
(Air Awakens #2.5)
5 Stars
Add to Goodreads

12 stories told from different perspectives that have to be read between book 2, Fire Falling, and book 3, Earth’s End.

The order of point of views are:
* Fritz
* Aldrik
* Elecia
* Aldrik
* Fritz
* Reale
* Emperor Solaris
* Jax
* Daniel
* Baldair
* Tim
* Erion

Current Reads:
A Curious Beginning
A Curious Beginning
by Deanna Raybourn
Add to Goodreads

London, 1887.

After burying her spinster aunt, orphaned Veronica Speedwell is free to resume her world travels in pursuit of scientific inquiry—and the occasional romantic dalliance. As familiar with hunting butterflies as with fending off admirers, Veronica intends to embark upon the journey of a lifetime.

But fate has other plans when Veronica thwarts her own attempted abduction with the help of an enigmatic German baron, who offers her sanctuary in the care of his friend Stoker, a reclusive and bad-tempered natural historian. But before the baron can reveal what he knows of the plot against her, he is found murdered—leaving Veronica and Stoker on the run from an elusive assailant as wary partners in search of the villainous truth.

What are your reading plans this week?

Let’s chat in the comments below!

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Memes · TBR

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? April 29, 2019

It's Monday What are you reading.png

Good Morning!

It’s the start of another week. It’s Monday! What are you Reading is hosted by Kathryn from Book Date, this is a weekly event to share what we’ve read in the past week and what we hope to read, plus whatever else comes to mind.

Last Weeks Books
The Dark Days Club

The Dark Days Club by Alison Goodman
5 Stars
Add to Goodreads

London, April 1812.

On the eve of eighteen-year-old Lady Helen Wrexhall’s presentation to the queen, one of her family’s housemaids disappears-and Helen is drawn into the shadows of Regency London. There, she meets Lord Carlston, one of the few who can stop the perpetrators: a cabal of demons infiltrating every level of society. Dare she ask for his help, when his reputation is almost as black as his lingering eyes? And will her intelligence and headstrong curiosity wind up leading them into a death trap?

Flame in the Mist.png
Flame in the Mist
 by Renée Ahdieh
5 Stars
Add to Goodreads

The only daughter of a prominent samurai, Mariko has always known she’d been raised for one purpose and one purpose only: to marry. Never mind her cunning, which rivals that of her twin brother, Kenshin, or her skills as an accomplished alchemist. Since Mariko was not born a boy, her fate was sealed the moment she drew her first breath.

So, at just seventeen years old, Mariko is sent to the imperial palace to meet her betrothed, a man she did not choose, for the very first time. But the journey is cut short when Mariko’s convoy is viciously attacked by the Black Clan, a dangerous group of bandits who’ve been hired to kill Mariko before she reaches the palace.

The lone survivor, Mariko narrowly escapes to the woods, where she plots her revenge. Dressed as a peasant boy, she sets out to infiltrate the Black Clan and hunt down those responsible for the target on her back. Once she’s within their ranks, though, Mariko finds for the first time she’s appreciated for her intellect and abilities. She even finds herself falling in love—a love that will force her to question everything she’s ever known about her family, her purpose, and her deepest desires.

Current Reads:
Here we go let’s give this one another try.

The Guest Book


The Guest Book 
by Sarah Blake
Add to Goodreads

An unforgettable love story, a novel about past mistakes and betrayals that ripple throughout generations, The Guest Book examines not just a privileged American family, but a privileged America. It is a literary triumph.

The Guest Book follows three generations of a powerful American family, a family that “used to run the world”.

And when the novel begins in 1935, they still do. Kitty and Ogden Milton appear to have everything—perfect children, good looks, a love everyone envies. But after a tragedy befalls them, Ogden tries to bring Kitty back to life by purchasing an island in Maine. That island, and its house, come to define and burnish the Milton family, year after year after year. And it is there that Kitty issues a refusal that will haunt her till the day she dies.

In 1959 a young Jewish man, Len Levy, will get a job in Ogden’s bank and earn the admiration of Ogden and one of his daughters, but the scorn of everyone else. Len’s best friend Reg Pauling has always been the only black man in the room—at Harvard, at work, and finally at the Miltons’ island in Maine.

An island that, at the dawn of the 21st century, this last generation doesn’t have the money to keep. When Kitty’s granddaughter hears that she and her cousins might be forced to sell it, and when her husband brings back disturbing evidence about her grandfather’s past, she realizes she is on the verge of finally understanding the silences that seemed to hover just below the surface of her family all her life.

An ambitious novel that weaves the American past with its present, The Guest Book looks at the racism and power that has been systemically embedded in the US for generations. Brimming with gorgeous writing and bitterly accurate social criticism, it is a literary tour de force.

The Beast's Heart
The Beast’s Heart
 by Leife Shallcross
Add to Goodreads

I am neither monster nor man—yet I am both.

I am the Beast.

The day I was cursed to this wretched existence was the day I was saved—although it did not feel so at the time.

My redemption sprung from contemptible roots; I am not proud of what I did the day her father happened upon my crumbling, isolated chateau. But if loneliness breeds desperation then I was desperate indeed, and I did what I felt I must. My shameful behaviour was unjustly rewarded.

My Isabeau. She opened my eyes, my mind and my heart; she taught me how to be human again.

And now I might lose her forever.

What are your reading plans this week?

Let’s chat in the comments below!

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Reviews

Review: Heartless by Gail Carriger

Book Review

Heartless
Heartless
by Gail Carriger
Parasol Protectorate #4
Steampunk, Historical Romance, Paranormal
Add to Goodreads

Synopsis
Lady Alexia Maccon, soulless, is at it again, only this time the trouble is not her fault. When a mad ghost threatens the queen, Alexia is on the case, following a trail that leads her deep into her husband’s past. Top that off with a sister who has joined the suffragette movement (shocking!), Madame Lefoux’s latest mechanical invention, and a plague of zombie porcupines and Alexia barely has time to remember she happens to be eight months pregnant.

Will Alexia manage to determine who is trying to kill Queen Victoria before it is too late? Is it the vampires again or is there a traitor lurking about in wolf’s clothing? And what, exactly, has taken up residence in Lord Akeldama’s second best closet?

Read-along
Midway through 2018, I decided that I wanted to read the books from Gail Carriger’s Parasolverse in chronological order. This led me to start the journey of the Parasolverse Read-Along in August 2018. If you would like more information about the read-along please visit my post about it here. At the beginning of each month, I will have a brief read-along post go up letting you know what the book for that month is.

What I thought
We are getting to the end of this series and there is only one more book left.  I have to say this is the book that I like the least in this series.  It was still a good book I mean I am giving it 4 stars.

I am so disappointed in two of the characters that I love so much. I won’t say which two but they broke my heart. Passions run high and actions are taken and revenge is never an answer that is good in the long run.

My Rating: /54 StarsFollow me on other platforms:
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