Apr 25, 2015

Dewey's 24-Hour Read-a-Thon: Start + Mini Challenges + Updates + Wrap Up!

 

It's time for Dewey's 24-Hour Read-a-Thon.
   

As always, the read-a-thon for me starts at 2 pm on Saturday, and ends at 2 pm on Sunday.

   

And this will be my 11th time participating.
   
 
I haven't quite decided what I'll read this time. I'll just choose on a whim ;) 
 
But, I have a nice mix of novellas, graphic novels, collections of stories, as well as full-length novels & shorter novels, and then there are the already started books I might pick up, even those I'd like to reread, as well as those I've already started rereading. So, it all depends on my mood...
  
Also, no goals this time, and I decided not to count the time or the pages, I'll just try to relax & read as much as I can in the 24 hours, and most of all, to have fun & enjoy reading!

       
HAPPY READING EVERYONE!!!


 Opening Meme:



1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today?
- As always, from my home in Skopje, Macedonia.

2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to?
- Coffee Gives Me Superpowers by Ryoko Iwata.

3) Which snack are you most looking forward to?
- The delicious mini cakes I made especially for this read-a-thon (and barely managed to stop myself from eating them all).

4) Tell us a little something about yourself!
- I'm a coffee addict, Neil Gaiman is my #1 fav author, and Forever for me is the best TV show at the moment!
 
5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? If this is your first read-a-thon, what are you most looking forward to?
- I've participated the last time of course (I haven't missed one in years), and the one thing I'm doing different this time is that I don't have a list of reads as always, but I'm choosing what to read on a whim, with the exception of the coffee book I mentioned above ;) 
 


 Seasons in Four Covers

 
   

I'm sorry for the low quality of the pic, but I still think you can see the seasons. Spring is obvious, the green cover with the green grass reminds me of spring. For summer, I chose the cover on the beach & the ocean, it reminded me of warm summer night. For autumn, obviously the cover with the girl with the umbrella in the rain. And for winter, the cover with the snowcapped mountains.
   


Treasure Hunt

  
  
The goal was to find covers with 3 items: a tree, snow & a weapon, and I found them all ;)


Book Spine Poetry



    

"The darkest touch,
soulless, torn,
forbidden.   
Warm bodies,
a thousand bones,
shattered souls,
forsaken,
forgiven."
  
    

In 100 years...

  

...I think that these books will be classics:

1. The Harry Potter series – because it’s one of the most amazing & well thought out fantasy series

2. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline – maybe I’m biased, because I love this book, but I think it will be one of the sci-fi classics

3. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak – you know why, if you’ve read it ;)

Bonus: pretty much anything by Neil Gaiman. I couldn’t choose one by him, so yeah… I’m pretty sure most of his books will be classics, because they’re brilliant!
  


Update #1:


So far, I participated in 5 of the challenges, and I read:


I also started & I'm still reading:


Now, it's after midnight here, and it's time for a short break and another coffee fix...


Update #2:


It's morning, and I'm trying to wake up. I'm actually drinking my 2nd cup of coffee. I stayed up until 6 a.m., but in the end, I decided to get some sleep, but at least there are still some 3+ hours before the read-a-thon is over. 

Since my last update, I did one more challenge Get Fit and Read, and I also read a graphic novel & a novella:


Now, I'm finishing with Dragons at Crumbling Castle and Other Tales by Terry Pratchett, with only 2 more tales to go. After that, no idea what I'll read next...


End of Event Meme:


 
1. Which hour was most daunting for you?
- Hours 19-20, mostly because it was tough to wake myself up, so I'm in condition to read.
 
2. Could you list a few high-interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year?
- Coffee Gives Me Superpowers by Ryoko Iwata & Terry Pratchett's Dragons at Crumbling Castle and Other Tales.
 
3. Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year?
- Nope.
 
4. What do you think worked really well in this year’s Read-a-thon?
- The cheerleaders. Never before have I been as cheered as this time, they did amazing job!
 
5. How many books did you read?
- 7 and a half.
 
6. What were the names of the books you read?
- Texting Under the Influence by Cara Lockwood, Coffee Gives Me Superpowers by Ryoko Iwata, The Frog in the Tree by Paul Waters, Doctor Who: The Anti-Hero by Stella Duffy, Edward Scissorhands Volume 1: Parts Unknown by Kate Leth, Working With Heat by Anne Calhoun, Dragons at Crumbling Castle and Other Tales by Terry Pratchett, and half of Second Chance Summer by Jill Shalvis.

7. Which book did you enjoy most?
- Definitely Coffee Gives Me Superpowers.
 
8. Which did you enjoy least?
- I enjoyed them all, but if I had to choose, then Edward Scissorhands.
 
9. If you were a Cheerleader, do you have any advice for next year’s Cheerleaders?
- I wasn't, but they were amazing this year :)
 
10. How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time?
- Of course I'll participate again, definitely as a reader, and maybe as a cheerleader, too.
 
  
  

Final Update:

  
Since my last update, I participated in the Share a Song challenge, and the End of Event Meme, and I finished Dragons at Crumbling Castle and Other Tales, and started Second Chance Summer by Jill Shalvis, and read a half of it.
  
 
Mini challenges done: 8
 
 
Books read: 7 + 1/2
 

Apr 21, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday: ALL TIME Favorite Authors!

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created & hosted @ The Broke and the Bookish. 
For more info about it, check out the post HERE.
     
 

So, My ALL TIME Favorite Authors are:

 
#1 - Neil Gaiman

Obviously, this isn't a surprise, if you've visited my blog before. Neil Gaiman is my #1 favorite author, and always will be. I adore his books (I'll never get enough of re-reading them), and for me - he's the most imaginative, brilliant & amazing author.


#2 - Victoria Schwab

While I was reading Victoria Schwab's debut The Near Witch some years ago - I had a feeling that she might be something special & the author to watch for, and now a few years later & a few books later - I'm happy to say that I was right! She's a brilliant author, with beautiful writing style & quite the storyteller & unique imagination.


#3 - Markus Zusak

Of course, Markus Zusak as one of the most brilliant storytellers had to be on this list. His books I Am the Messenger & The Book Thief are masterpieces, and even his Wolfe Brothers trilogy had its moments, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was obvious that he was still evolving an a writer back then, but I loved seeing his glimpses of brilliance to come in some of the passages in these 3 books, and I'm eagerly waiting for him to publish his next book!


#4 - Gena Showalter

I'm not really a big fan of the paranormal romance as a genre, but when it comes to Gena Showalter's books, I'm addicted. She creates quite the addicting worlds when it comes to the supernatural, along with compelling & mostly likable characters, so before you know it, you will be hooked. She has done that to me again & again, and I will probably never stop reading her books!


#5 - Peter V. Brett

I'm usually picky when I say that I'm a fan of an author. I must to have read & adored more then one stand-alone book or series by an author, before I can declare that he's one of my favs, but Peter V. Brett is the exception. I've read only his Demon Cycle series so far, but it's my most fav fantasy series, and I know I'll never get enough of it - no matter if it's a re-read or a new book, or just a novella or short story set in that world. This author can do something that I'm pretty sure none other has done before - make you care about a character that you've disliked or hated before - even if you don't agree with what he's doing, understand him why he's doing it & still care about her or him. So, yes, he's THAT good! And I know that he'll always be one of my favs, even when he's done with the Demon Cycle series, and writes something else.


#6 - Cinda Williams Chima

I adore her Seven Realms series (probably my most fav YA epic fantasy series), and I love her Heir Chronicles , too, and I can't wait for her next book.
  

#7 - Laura Bickle

I adore all of her books, no matter if they're written as Laura Bickle or Alayna Williams - they're all addicting (with the exception of the last one, I haven't read it yet, but heard great things about it), different & unique in its own way, that's why I love them.


#8 - D. J. MacHale

His books are quite fun & adventurous, but also so addicting & with lovable characters. I'm yet to finish his Pendragon series, but his Morpheus Road trilogy is one of my most fav, and I'll never get enough of re-reading it!
  

#9 - Jonathan Maberry

Jonathan Maberry knows his stuff. He creates kick-ass characters (no matter if they're adult or teens), compelling stories & intriguing characters, and before you know it, you're hooked. He has shown this both with his Joe Ledger series & his Benny Imura series.


#10 - James Rollins

For me, no one writes adventures like James Rollins does. I might be biased, but from all the authors in the genre that I've tried, he's still at the top of the list.


#11 - Neal Shusterman

Neal Shusterman is also among the list of most imaginative authors out there, with quite the beautiful writing style & compelling stories & characters.



And this is where I stop. I can probably go on & list a few more (I was planning to), but it has to end somewhere ;)
 

What about you? 
   
Leave me your TTT links!

Apr 20, 2015

Spring into Horror Read-a-Thon: Start + Updates + Wrap Up!


It's that time again... Time for the annual Spring into Horror Read-a-Thon hosted by Michelle a.k.a The True Book Addict at her read-a-thon dedicated blog Seasons of Reading!

The read-a-thon starts on Monday, April 20th at midnight CST and ends on Sunday, April 26th at 11:59 pm CST.
  
For more info & to join the read-a-thon, visit the post HERE.
  

On Twitter we (read-a-thoners) will use the hashtag #SpringHorrorRAT.
 
 
If you take a look in my sidebar for my blog archive, you'll definitely notice that I haven't been around as much. I haven't been blogging & reviewing books, and I haven't been reading, so I'm hoping that this read-a-thon is the push I need to get back into it. I even bought myself a Kindle this month (something I never planned to do, actually, it was a spur of the moment thing), but I'm hoping it will help me to get back to reading, so yes, I will probably read only ebooks/galleys for this read-a-thon. Anyway, enough with this rumbling, back to the read-a-thon...
 
 

What I'll read?

  
If I read one horror/thriller book, I will be happy. I have quite a few lined up on my Kindle, all ready to be read, I only need to choose one and I have a graphic novel I'd like to read this week, too. I'll update this post with my progress and what I'm reading, as soon I start.
  
Also, I'll try to tweet now & then with my progress, and of course I'm participating in Dewey's 24-Hour Read-a-thon this weekend, too, so I'm hoping to finish my "goals" before that ;)
  

Update #1:

 
Even though day 1 of the read-a-thon isn't over yet, I'm happy to say that I started to read Pines by Blake Crouch - the first book in the Wayward Pines trilogy, and although I'm still at the beginning, I already really, really like it, and I'm looking forward to getting back to it asap.
  

Update #2:


I'm still reading Pines, and I will probably finish it soon, because it's good, and it's definitely the perfect read for this read-a-thon. I also read the graphic novel Rot & Ruin #1 by Jonathan Maberry, and I loved it. It was great seeing my fav characters from the Benny Imura series. Also, it has zombies, so yes, still fits the read-a-thon ;)


Update #3:


And I finished Pines today! There are 2+ days left of the read-a-thon, but I don't know what I'll read next.


Wrap Up:


It was a successful read-a-thon (Dewey's, too). I read:

  
So, that makes for a total of 2 full-length novels, 1 collection of short stories, 3 novellas, 2 graphic novels, 1 childrens book & 1 pretty cool (and amazing) illustrated book about coffee!

Before Dewey's, I read only the Rot & Ruin graphic novel & Pines - the scary book ;)
 
The rest I read while Dewey's RAT lasted, with the exception of Second Chance Summer - I started it before Dewey ended, but finished it for this RAT.
 

 So, it was a success! ^_^

Mar 13, 2015

TBR Read-a-Thon: Start + Goals + Reading List + Wrap Up!


The TBR Read-a-tThon is hosted by Kimba @ Caffeinated Book Reviewer.

The goal of this read-a-thon is to read books published before March 1st, 2015, no matter the length.

The read-a-thon starts on March 13th & ends on March 16th @ 11:59 PM.

The Twitter hashtag is #TBRreadathon.


For more detailed info about the read-a-thon & to join the fun, sign up HERE.


My Goals:

  
- to read 2 full-length books;

- to share updates on Twitter.  

My Reading List:


 
 
I'll just update this post with my progress!
Happy Reading Everyone!!!


Wrap Up:


Well, I completed my goal & read 2 full-length book from my TBR pile. And probably for the first time, I actually sticked to my planned books. ;)

Anyway, both of the books I read were great & I loved them, and those books are:

Mar 8, 2015

Flunked - Fairy Tale Reform School Blog Tour: Review + Excerpt + Giveaway!

 
Flunked
(Fairy Tale Reform School, #1)
by
Jen Calonita

Publisher: Sourcebooks Jabberwocky

Publication date: March 3rd, 2015
 
  
 
My rating: 4.5 of 5
 
(Book read in January, 2015,  from the eARC received from the publisher via NetGalley, in exchange of an honest review.)
 
  
 

Summary:

 
 
OUR MISSION:
To turn WICKED DELINQUENTS
and FORMER VILLAINS
into FUTURE HEROES
 
Gilly wouldn’t call herself wicked exactly…but when you have five little brothers and sisters and live in a run- down boot, you have to get creative to make ends meet. Gilly’s a pretty good thief (if she does say so herself).
Until she gets caught.
Gilly’s sentenced to three months at Fairy Tale Reform School - where all of the teachers are former (super-scary) villains like the Big Bad Wolf, the Evil Queen, and Cinderella’s Wicked Stepmother. Harsh. But when she meets fellow students Jax and Kayla, she learns there’s more to this school than its heroic mission. There’s a battle brewing and Gilly has to wonder: can a villain really change?
 
 
 
  


My Thoughts on the Book:

 
  
Flunked - the first book in the Fairy Tale Reform School series is a wonderful new start & a new twist on the characters & villains from our favorite classic fairy tales.

I must admit that I wasn't sure about it at first, but before I knew it, I was hooked on the characters & the story & the world, and I loved the new twist, and I loved that it made you think about heroes & villains, and made you wonder what exactly makes a hero? 

I won't go into details, but Flunked is a delightful fantasy read, full with lovable characters that will get under your skin, lots of twists & turns, humour, magic, villains, mystery, and an imaginative & amusing fairy tale world that will leave you eager for more.

So, yes, I loved this book & everything about it, and I can't wait for the next book. Jen Calonita has written an enchanting & unique story, that I highly recommend to everyone, especially to fairy tale fans & children. I know that if I read this book when I was a child, it would've been among my favs. Then again, I've added it on my favs pile even now, and I'm an adult, so yes, it's that good!
 
So, if you enjoy entertaining books that are full of magic & wonder, fairy tale characters, humour & a mystery to solve, and books that will bring a smile to your face every time you think about them, then Flunked is the book for you, and I can't recommend it enough!


 

About Jen Calonita:

 
 
Jen Calonita is the author of the Secrets of My Hollywood Life series and other books like Sleepaway Girls and Summer State of Mind, but Fairy Tale Reform School is her first middle grade series. She rules Long Island, New York with husband Mike, princes Tyler and Dylan, and Chihuahua Captain Jack Sparrow, but the only castle she’d ever want to live in is Cinderella’s at Disney World. She’d love for you to drop her a line at jencalonitaonline.com or keep the fairy tale going at http://books.sourcebooks.com/enchantasia/
 
 

 

Excerpt:



There’s a boy up there, standing on the crystal chandelier! He has slightly curly blond hair and is wearing a uniform—­a navy sweater vest over a white shirt with khaki pants—­but his boots are muddy. He’s stepping on priceless crystals with cruddy boots? Is he insane?
“Jax! What are you doing up there?” Kayla whispers heatedly.
“I’m cleaning the crystal for Flora,” Jax says and rolls his eyes. “What does it look like I’m doing? I’m making
a break for it.”
Kayla applauds. “Yay! This time I know you can do it.”
I shade my eyes from the light bursting through the stained-­glass window next to the chandelier Jax is perched on. “Busting out? Why?” I ask Kayla. “I thought you said this place was cool.”
Jax laughs loudly and looks at me. I feel slightly stunned. I’ve never seen violet eyes before. “FTRS was fun for a while, but strange things have started happening and I don’t want to be here when something bad goes down.”
Strange things? What kind of strange things? Why does Kayla suddenly look pale?
“He’s exaggerating,” Kayla tells me, but she doesn’t sound convincing.
Drip. Whatever Jax is holding is leaking. Kayla and I move out of the way so we don’t get wet. “Grease,” Jax explains to me. “It lubes the window.” He swings the chandelier, and as it nears the window, he uses a fork to try to pry the window open. “A few more tries and I’ll have it.”
“Then what are you going to do, genius?” I ask. “You’re two stories up.”
Jax’s eyes gleam. “I’ve jumped from higher spots before.”
“It’s true,” Kayla says to me. “Jax once jumped from the gym to the dining hall turret. That was three stories up. We call him the Escape Artist. One time he even managed to break into Azalea and Dahlia’s rooms and borrowed their keys to the indoor pool so the whole dorm could take a midnight swim.”
“Impressive,” I tell him. “And I thought I was good at tricking obnoxious royals.”
“She stole a dragon’s tooth clip from one this morning,” Kayla fills him in.
“Nice,” Jax says. “Your first pull?”
“No, I’ve been doing it for a while,” I brag.
“Me too,” Jax says. “My father is a farmer. You can only get so far trading vegetables. I needed to kick things up a notch.”
For some reason, I don’t think any of us are going to make the transformation Headmistress Flora is looking for. “Why do you want to break out so bad?”
“I’ve got places to see, and Enchantasia isn’t one of them.” Jax swings the chandelier so hard the crystals clang together. The window latch pops open, and I watch Jax leap from the chandelier to the tiny window ledge. I’m in awe. Jax looks down at us smugly before pushing open the window. “Are you sure you two don’t want to join me?”
“There’s no time for us,” Kayla says. “Get out of here. Wait!” Her eyes widen. “You deactivated the alarm on the window, right?”
“There isn’t one,” Jax insists. “If there was, I wouldn’t be able to do this.” But when Jax lifts the window, we hear:
EEEEEE! EEEE! EEEE! Unauthorized exit! Unauthorized exit!
The shrieking sound is so intense that Kayla and I cover our ears. Within seconds, Flora is out of her office and running toward us.
Swoosh!
I feel something brush past me and I whirl around. When I look up at Jax again, a large, muscular man with a long mane of hair is hanging on to the window ledge, his furry hands pulling Jax back by his shirt. How did the man get up there without a ladder?
“Mr. Jax,” the man says in a low growl, “we really must stop meeting like this.”
 
  
 

 
If you get sentenced to Fairy Tale Reform School, it will help to have an ally. Take the quiz and find out who your mentor would be.
 
Fairy Tale Reform School Quiz 
 

 

GIVEAWAY: 

  

Challenges: