Read Harder challenge

November Monthly TBR

I joined in on Andi’s #15in31 challenge for October, and while I didn’t succeed I did better than I expected – I read 11 books in October. Were some of them pretty short? Yeah, but who cares. I also managed 57 issues of comics, so October was pretty decent. My only regret is that I didn’t get to some books that I was looking forward to, but eh – I’ll get to them eventually. I might make December a “catch-up” month, in which I just aim to read books that were on previous TBRs but I still haven’t read.

Anyways, let’s see what’s on the table for November!

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From top to bottom:

  • Last God Standing by Michael Boatman – Actually, I’ve had this on my shelf for a while and I really do want to read it now. It’s about God skipping out to be a stand-up comedian, I mean come on.
  • US(a.) by Saul Williams – NEW SAUL WILLIAMS POETRY. And apparently written after he traveled abroad and then came back to the US. I happened to see this on an endcap at Barnes and Noble yesterday and instantly bought it.
  • Doughnut by Tom Holt – I have no idea how I stumbled upon Tom Holt, but he appears to write humor fiction and that’s a thing I love. This one is about a guy whose hit a bit of a rough patch in life after blowing up the Very Very Large Hadron Collider, and then his physicist friend dies and leaves him a safety deposit box. I’m not 100% sure, but I think what happens involves quantum physics and a doughnut. So weird, so in my wheelhouse.
  • On Immunity by Eula Biss – I’m not that interested in the to vaccinate or not to vaccinate debate, but I have the audiobook too and it was on Book Riot’s list for “published by an indie press” for the Read Harder challenge, so what the hell. It’s short.

On the Kindle:

  • Lagoon by Nnedi Okorafor – Got this on SUCH a good deal last month, super excited to read it. She writes really great sci-fi.
  • 50 Shades of Grey by E.L. James – Honestly, I read the first chapter and I don’t know if I can make it all the way through. I need a “guilty pleasure” book for the Read Harder challenge, so I got this on Overdrive… I figured it’s a book that I would feel kind of awkward reading, and I’ll get pleasure out of hate-reading it. On the plus side, these books were a huge phenomenon in the book world, so I’ll have the experience of reading the first book to back up any discussion on it.

Comics:

  • Fables (volumes 4 and 5) by Bill Willingham and Mark Buckingham – I just got volumes 4 through 7 from my comic shop – I’m going to read these two this month, and save the other two for December. I have been itching to get back to the Fables world, so hella excited about these. The only reason I haven’t started them yet is because I wanted to finish TWD Compendium 1 first.
  • a bunch of new Marvel titles – November is when all of the All-New, All-Different titles I’m psyched for are coming out (Ultimates, Vision, ANAD Avengers, new Thor, new Hulk, new Ms. Marvel, etc…)

November is going to be busy – trying to go to NYC one weekend to see my family, then there’s Thanksgiving, and wedding planning stuff… but here’s hoping I can read all of these and more!

What’s on your radar this month?

~Sarah

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October Monthly TBR

September and I got on pretty well, at least on the reading front. I finished 7 books and 23 comics (technically I’ve read more comics than that, because I’m re-reading The Walking Dead: Compendium 1, but I’m not going to add it to my spreadsheet until I finish it). And I’ve really liked a lot of the stuff I’ve read! Good month.

Andi at Estella’s Revenge is hosting a #15in31 challenge in October, and I’m crazy enough to have signed up. There isn’t a single month so far this year where the number of books I’ve read has been in the double digits, so I’ll consider it a success if I manage 10 and an uber-success if I manage a whole 15. Dewey’s 24-Hour Readathon is October, 17th, so hopefully that’ll give me a nice boost.

Anyways, here are my mega TBR piles! I’m trying to focus on digital reading this month, because man it’s out of control.

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On the Kindle:

  • Please Do Not Taunt the Octopus by Mira Grant – A kinda new Newsflesh novella. Totally saving this for the readathon.
  • Radiance of Tomorrow by Ishmael Beah – Had this on my Kindle for a literal age now, and I’m finally gonna read it! It’ll satisfy one of the categories for Book Riot’s Read Harder challenge anyways.
  • Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte – I wanna re-read this just cause it’s that time of year. The e-book was like a dollar and the Audible narration with it was three bucks I think, so I might listen to it on audio. (Back-up plan – re-watch the movie with Tom Hardy. Won’t count as a book read, but still.)
  • The Engagements by J. Courtney Sullivan – Why does the Kindle version have this ugly color instead of the normal pretty blue one with a big ring on it? Anyways, I’ve heard fabulous things and got this on a good sale a while back.
  • When Beauty Tamed the Beast by Eloisa James – Giving this a shot, to fulfill the “fairy tale retelling” category for the RH challenge. Happy that Overdrive had it.
  • Cybersexism by Laurie Penny – One of those $1.99 short ebooks, I’ll probably save it for the readathon. Penny is a feminist writer that I follow on Twitter and a while back I saw some vicious, horrible, sexist tweets to her that were INFURIATING. I haven’t actually read any of her books yet, so hoping this will be a good intro to her published work.
  • Binti by Nnedi Okorafor – This novella just came out, excited to read it but will probably hoard it for the readathon (seeing a pattern here?)
  • Cujo by Stephen King – Because Halloween season, and I need to read more King.
  • More Than Human by Ramez Naam – A book about the future biological enhancements and stuff. I like Naam, and have had this idling for a while. And I desperately needed some non-fiction here.

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On my physical to-read shelves:

  • Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie – Because I loooved Americanah by this author and really want to explore her backlist.
  • Season to Taste by Natalie Young – Seemed seasonally appropriate as it’s about a woman who kills and cooks her husband. A little bit of murder and comfort foods!
  • The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith (J.K. Rowling) – This is the second Cormoran Strike book. I really liked the first, and the third comes out later this month, so I should probably dive in already. I was holding out to see if the ebook would become available on Overdrive, but no such luck, so I guess I’ll read the hardcover copy THAT I ALREADY HAVE. (I am ridiculous.)

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On Scribd:

  • Edward Scissorhand comics – I added these to my list when I first got Scribd, so I’m gonna finally read em. Also, seasonally appropriate.
  • A Leaf On the Wind of All Hallows by Diana Gabaldon – I’ve read this short story before, but it’s on audio so I may just listen to it again. I miss Outlander.
  • Black Cool: One Thousand Streams of Blackness by Rebecca Walker – A group of essays about black culture. There is probably a more in depth way to describe it but I haven’t read it yet, but that seems to be the basis.
  • Zoo City by Lauren Beukes – I’ve heard fabulous things about Beukes’ other novels, but this one was available on Scribd so that’s the one I’m starting with. Something about a girl in South Africa who writes scam emails to make a living but then gets hired to find a missing person because she has a supernatural gift for finding things? Whatever, I’m in.
  • Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi – This is the sequel to Shatter Me, which I just read this month. It’s a YA novel about a girl who is basically Rogue from the X-Men, but it was interesting, and definitely a quick read.
  • Destroy Me by Tahereh Mafi – An even quicker read, as this is a novella told from the POV of a bad guy. Fun!

Holy shit that was a lot of books. And clearly my TBR piles are always subject to change – I’ll probably ditch a few and pick up some other random stuff (I mean, I think there’s a new Rainbow Rowell out this month too, so…)

What are you looking to read this month?

~Sarah

Top Ten Tuesday: Autumn TBR

the broke and the bookish

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish

Ahh, what a nice and easy topic this week – Top Ten Books on My Fall TBR. This is kind of perfect, because I’ve been looking at the Read Harder Challenge and checking what I still need to cross off, so I have a good idea of what I want to seek out soon.

1 – Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho – I heard about this on the Book Riot podcast, and I got the sample on my Kindle. It sounds super amazing – a Victorian kind of setting in an England in which the magic is disappearing, and the kind of “head” magician is a black man, and it’s his job to try to bring the magic back. And he apparently finds out that women’s magical abilities are being suppressed, which is nuts because they need all the magic they can get and women should be able to freely practice magic, and it just sounds feminist and fabulous. I ordered a paper copy from Amazon (because screw you publisher, I’m not paying fucking $12.99 for an e-book) and I’m about 80 pages in so far and it’s GREAT.

2 – The Fishermen by Chigozie Obioma – I had this out from the library at one point but didn’t get around to reading it before it was due, and I’ve been regretting it. And now I’ve been hearing extra buzz because it’s shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize. I really gotta get my hands on it again.

3 – On Immunity: An Inoculation by Eula Biss – This checks off the “indie press” category, and I’ve had the audiobook from Audible for a long while now but haven’t got around to it.

4 – Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff – This book is BRAND SPANKIN’ NEW and guess who grabbed a copy at the library? That’s right. And it wasn’t even on the express shelf. Hell yeah. I actually have already kind of forgot what it’s about, but I remember hearing excitement about it and it’s on the NBA longlist, so it should be good, right?

5 – When Beauty Tamed the Beast by Eloisa James – I tried reading an Eloisa James book before but got really annoyed with the main characters and DNF’ed. But, this one will count for the “fairy tale retelling” category and I’ve hardly read any romance this year, so why not. Better not ruin Beauty and the Beast for me though.

6 – Severed: A History of Heads Lost and Heads Found by Frances Larson – This sounds like it could a fun, disturbing, weird read and perfect for the “microhistory” category.

7 – Radiance of Tomorrow by Ishmael Beah – I have had this on my Kindle for AGES. I’m going to focus on trying to read mostly digitally in October I think, so this will work for that and the “written by an author from Africa” category. I’ve read Beah’s memoir and that was really good. It’ll be interesting to see how his fiction is.

8 – The Dinner by Herman Koch – A book that got a lot of praise and that I have sitting on my shelf. It has an unreliable narrator… and that’s all I really remember from the description. It’ll cross off the “originally published in another language” category since it first came out in Dutch.

9 – Frankenstein by Mary Shelley Alright, so one of the categories on the RH challenge is “book published before 1850”. I have never read Frankenstein, so I might FINALLY give that a go. I also kind of have Wuthering Heights in mind for this, but I don’t know if it counts since it would be a re-read. It’s been a couple years so I might re-read it anyways, I kind of miss it.

10 – Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan – This sounds like it might be a really fun read, and it’ll work for the “takes place in Asia” category. The dynamics between the old and young, and mainland Chinese and American-born Chinese, sound really interesting. I added it to my holds list on Overdrive.

Is there anything in particular you’re excited to read this fall? A new release, or something just perfect for the season?

~Sarah