10 Quick Reads to Pull You Out of a Reading Slump

This post is similar to one I did last year, called Ten Book Recommendations for Those in a Reading Slump. That list is comprised of awesome, edge-of-your-seat books to get you hooked again. Today I’m going to take a slightly different approach – here are some quick reads to give you that feeling of accomplishment you get when you finish a book. Hopefully these will help you ease your way out of a reading slump! I’ve linked reviews I’ve written, if applicable.

(This post/prompt was part of Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.)

  1. Page by Page by Laura Lee Gulledge
  2. Will and Whit by Laura Lee Gulledge
  3. Weekday Brides series by Catherine Bybee
  4. Twilight Graphic Novel
  5. The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo
  6. Life in Motion by Misty Copeland
  7. Seconds by Brian Lee O’Malley
  8. The Lemonade War by Jacqueline Davis
  9. Confectionately Yours series by Lisa Papademitriou
  10. Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Copy of Copy of cozy

Advertisements

Ten Most Recent Additions to My To-Read List

I’m probably cheating with this one a little. I’m writing this post during National Novel Writing Month in November 2018. (Hi future me!) So here are the ten most recent additions to my list as of 11/3/18.

  1. This Dog for Hire by Carol Benjamin
    I just added this to my to-read list while writing Ten New to Me Authors I Read in 2018. (And yes, I pre-wrote that post too!) This is a cozy mystery with a dog involved, which is pretty much all I need to know to want to pick it up.
  2. Pointe by Brandy Colbert
    I also just added this to my list while writing Ten New to Me Authors I Read in 2018. This author wrote Life in Motion with Misty Copeland, and I enjoyed reading that. Pointe sounds a lot darker and heavier than Life in Motion, but also seems like a very interesting story about a ballet dancer.
  3. Snowflakes and Coffee Cakes by Joanne DeMaio
    I’m a sucker for Christmas and winter themed books, what can I say? I recently went through and added a bunch of Christmas themed books to my list, after discovering that Goodreads lists Christmas as a category that you can browse!So you’ll probably see some more coming up.
  4. Max’s Christmas by Rosemary Wells
    I love Christmas books, and picture books count too!
  5. The Assistant’s Christmas Wish by Lexi Ostrow
    This romance sounds very cozy. Two people who are attracted to each other, but unwilling to admit it, get snowed into a chalet together for a weekend. Yes. Please.
  6. The Art of Fixing Things, Principles of Machines, and How to Repair Them: 150 Tips and Tricks to Make Things Last Longer, and Save You Money by Lawrence Pierce
    I think the title says it all. I’ve always wanted to know how to repair things on my own, but never took the time to actually figure out how. This book sounds like a great way to learn! I found this while browsing a Christmas gift idea list on dodoburd, which advertised everywhere on Pinterest.
  7. The Right Stuff by Tom Wolfe
    I was watching an interview of Captain Scott Kelly and he mentioned this book as one of the main reasons he wanted to become an astronaut. So of course I need to read it too!
  8. Santa Clauses: Short Poems from the North Pole by Bob Raczka
    How can you not want to read this book after it’s very clever title?
  9. Santa’s Favorite Story by HisakoAoiki
    I heard about this book via a blog post by the Dating Divas about books that keep Christ in Christmas.
  10. Itsy Bitsy Christmas by Max Lucado
    I also got this one from the Dating Divas post referenced in number 9. I love Max Lucado’s You Are Special, so I’m hoping this one is just as great as well!

So there are my ten most recently added books. I found it quite interesting to recall where I heard of each book and why I chose to add it to my list. I got ideas from websites, YouTube videos, Goodreads lists, and while researching for my blog!

What books did you just add to your TBR? And where to you get your ideas for books to read?

❤ Annette

1 Year Ago: Guide to 2018 Book Challenges

Books I Meant to Read in 2018 But Didn’t

When it comes to books, my desire to read is often much larger than my ability to read. So just like I never got around to some books in 2017, here are ten books I meant to read in 2018 but didn’t. 

This post is part of Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. I will be linking up there! 

  1. City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
    When will I finally read this one?! It’s traveled with to me to more apartments than I can count, and yet I still have not managed to read it. 
  2. Gemina by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
    I loved Illuminae so so so much, and yet never took time to read it’s sequel.  
  3. Meatloaf and Mistletoe by Katie Mettner
    I forgot about this book until I was looking through my old TBRs for this post. But gosh darn, it sounds cute. 
  4. Rebel Belle by Rachel Hawkins
    I’m a sucker for a pretty cover, and this book is no exception. Except all I’ve done is look at the cover, and I haven’t yet delved inside. Which needs to be remedied. 
  5. Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins
    This has been on my TBR forever, what’s wrong with me?! I even own it so it’s not like I need to track it down to buy or borrow it!! 
  6. The Best Friend by Melody Carlson
    I re-read the first book in this series so I could read this one and have some idea what was going on. Then I purchased this ebook. And yet… I still didn’t read it. So many books, so little time. 
  7. Fast Food Genocide by Joel Furhman and Robert Phillips
    To be fair, I did start reading this one last year. And it was super interesting, but it was also taking forever to read since it is so chock full of information. So I returned it to the library and now feel bad for not finishing it. I’ll have to check it out again soon! 
  8. See How They Run by Ally Carter
    I tried to get caught up on different series last year and while I succeeded with some, I failed with others. This would be one of the “failures”. 
  9. The Psycopath Test by Jon Ronson
    I thought this would be a great book to read a year after reading So You’ve Been Publicly ShamedIt sat on my shelf for a while and I got super psyched to read it, but never did. I so want to know more about the psychopath test, especially after watching Jon Ronson’s TED Talk. 
  10. Tempests and Slaughter by Tamora Pierce
    I love (and have read!) almost all of Tamora Pierce’s books! This is another one I checked out of the library but then just sat on my shelf for a while. I really need to read this one before the next book in the series comes out! 

What books did you mean to read in 2018 but didn’t get around to? 

❤ Annette 

copy of books i meant to read

New to Me Authors Read in 2018

2018 was focused very much on finishing series I had already started, so a lot of the authors I read were returning favorites. However, I did mix it up a little, so here are the top ten new to me authors I read in 2018. (Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, so I will be linking this post to her blog.) 

  1. Laura Lee Gulledge
    She wrote Will and Whit and Page by Paige. After reading the first graphic novel of hers, I went to Goodreads and added all of her books (only a few at the moment) to my TBR, since I absolutely love her reading and writing style. 
  2. G. Willow Wilson
    I really tried to get into graphic novels and comics in 2018. After Laura Lee Gulledge, G. Willow Wilson was probably my second favorite author of the year. Ms. Marvel is an awesome series that I definitely need to catch up on. 
  3. Jennifer Smith
    I read her book Windfall at the beginning of this year and quite enjoyed it. At the time I didn’t even realize how many of her books I already had on my TBR. The next one of hers I want to pick up is probably going to be The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight. 
  4. Marie Lu
    Believe it or not, Warcross was the first book I ever read by Marie Lu. The book was intriguing enough that I want to pick up the next one in the series. Plus, I’ve heard such great things about Marie Lu’s other series’ that I should probably pick those up too! 
  5. Brandy Colbert
    She wrote Life In Motion with Misty Copeland. I absolutely loved this non-fiction book. I’ll have to check out some other books that she’s written! 
  6. Marie Kondo
    I’m going to be honest, I’m not sure if I like Ms. Kondo’s writing style so much as I like the ideas presented in her book. Regardless, she is a new to me author that I read last year. (I should also note that the book I read was translated by Cathy Hirano, so I’m sure some of the writing skill/voice also came from her!) 
  7. Patty Hall
    She writes historical romances – the one I read was set during World War II. I’ll have to read her a little more to tell you if I’m in love with her writing style, but I liked the book I read enough that I want to pick up the next one in the series. 
  8. Leddy Harper
    She wrote well enough to get me quite invested in the story! Which is the goal of any author, really.  
  9. Carol Benjamin
    This author writes dog-themed books, both fiction and non-fiction. The book I read of hers, Second-Hand Dog, was a quick, easy read, but was also full of very useful information. I think I might pick up one of her fiction books next. 
  10. Bryan Lee O’Malley
    I didn’t know it when I read the graphic novel Seconds, but Bryan Lee O’Malley is also the author of Scott Pilgrim. Before reading Seconds, I didn’t think I’d enjoy this author’s works, but Seconds definitely convinced me! 

What are the best new to you authors you read last year? Have you read any of mine? 

❤ Annette 

2018 authors

Most Anticipated Releases for the First Half of 2019

To be honest, I’m not eagerly anticipating anything quite as much as I was last year. That’s okay though, because I prefer to “binge-read” series instead of waiting for them to come out one-by-one. Because of this, though, I only have five books for this list, plus one coming out at an unspecified time this year. So it’s only half of a Top Ten Tuesday really. 😛 Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.

The Girl King by Mimi Yu (Expected January 8, 2019)
This sounds like a fantastic fantasy novel, sort of along the lines of The False Prince, but for Young Adults. 

Pretty in Punxsutawney by Laurie Crompton (Expected January 22, 2019)
This can either be really good or really boring, but since it’s a YA romance, I’m definitely down to find out. If you couldn’t guess by the title, this is a play on Groundhog Day, where the main character has to relive the same day over and over again. I haven’t seen the movie, but I’ve seen other movies use this concept well (like in Naked by Netflix) or poorly (like The Twelve Dates of Chrismtas). I’m interested to see how the author handles it. 

A Danger to Herself and Others by Alyssa Sheinmel (Expected February 5, 2019)
This is a young adult novel focused on mental illness. It sounds super intriguing and like we get to follow the character as she discovers or realizes things about herself. I found out about this book from We Live and Breathe Books. 

Four Dead Queens by Astrid Shulte (Expected February 26, 2019)
Young adult fantasy/murder mystery/romance. Do I really need to say more? 

I Love You So Mochi by Sarah Kuhn (Expected May 28, 2019)
I’m a sucker for super cute romances, if you haven’t picked that up by now. This sounds like another one to add to my list. Plus, it’s published by Scholastic, and I don’t think I’ve ever read a book of theirs I didn’t like. 

The Exile’s Gift by Tamora Pierce (Expected sometime 2019)
Now I’m super sad that I haven’t read the first book in this series, Tempests and Slaughter. Tamora Pierce is definitely like my favorite author ever, so this series is definitely high on my radar. 

What books are you looking forward to reading this year?

❤ Annette

1 year ago: Top Ten Books I Wanted to Read in 2017 But Didn’t

2019 new

Winter 2018 TBR

If you haven’t noticed, I’ve stopped doing TBRs on my site for a while. This is mostly because I typically read based on what I feel like reading, which changes by the day. But since this is the Top Ten Tuesday topic for the week, I figured I’d give it a try. Not to have a rigid “these are what I must read this winter” list, but to remind myself of all the awesome books out there that I want to read! So here are ten books on my winter TBR. 

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, so I will be linking there. 

  1. White Christmas by Jody Rosen
    This one keeps showing up, I know! But I really do need to read it before our performances start before Christmas. Because I am so tired of hearing the same stories about Irving Berlin four times a night! (Don’t get me wrong, Irving Berlin is a great guy with some great music and great stories. I just want more information so I can mix it up.) 
  2. The City of Brass by S. A. Chakraborty
    I won this one off of Goodreads, so I feel like I need to read and review it pretty soon. Plus, it’s gorgeous and seems like a long read – perfect for curling up with in the winter time! 
  3. Anatomy of a Boyfriend by Daria Snadowsky
    I bought this one on Black Friday years and years ago. It looks like a quick, fun, read, and since I own it it should be easy to pick up. I just haven’t gotten around to it. *ashamed* 
  4. The Problem with Forever by Jennifer Armentrout
    I’m going to be honest, I don’t even know what this book is about. But it’s so pretty that I really want to pick it up and read it. 
  5. When to Rob a Bank by Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner
    I’ve loved the other books by these authors, so this one should be great as well. This is another one I own that I just need to read already! 
  6. Scooby Doo Y El Barco Hundido por James Gelsey
    This one is next in the Scooby Doo series for me. I’m hoping to brush up on my Spanish, and to feel the success of a quick/easy read. Plus, I always find Scooby Doo stories quite amusing. 
  7. Keeper of the Lost Cities by Shannon Messenger
    A fourth grader I taught (I volunteer at my church to teach once a week) recommended this book to me – but I promptly forgot the title. Then, my friend mentioned it as a great middle grade read. As soon as I saw the character names I got super excited! It’s definitely next on my TBR. (Not totally related, but my friend was reading this because she’s getting into writing middle grade novels. Which also means that I get to beta-read her novel, which is pretty cool! Finally my out-of-age-group reading habits have paid off. 😛) 
  8. Cinder by Marissa Meyer
    It’s going to happen by the end of the year, I promise. (I hope.) It helps that I finally found which box it was packed in. (I mean, of course everything was unpacked in January when I moved.. What am I talking about finding things in boxes still? 😛) 
  9. Mind Over Magic by William Rabkin
    I started reading this while I was in the emergency room over a month ago. I made it halfway through but then stopped. So I better pick it up and finish it! 
  10. Unspecified Christmas Book
    I have soooo many Christmas books I want to read! (There are 173 on my Goodreads Christmas TBR as of the writing of this post!) I already own quite a few, so I definitely want to pick up and read at least one of them this season! I’ll probably read a lot more than that though! 

What’s on your winter TBR? Any books I need to add to mine? 

❤ Annette 

winter tbr

10 Backlist Books I Want to Read

I have a huge TBR, so pretty much everything I want to read is a backlist book. So for today’s post, I chose ten books that I want to read that it feels like everyone has already read. (This is part of Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. I’ll be linking up there. Pictures are affiliate links.)


Cinder by Marissa Meyers
A friend got this for me for my birthday last year, and I still haven’t gotten around to reading it! Which is a shame because it seems very much up my alley!

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

A couple of friends of mine really loved this series, so I will probably love it too. I just have to actually pick it up.

The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith
I’m really curious to see what J. K. Rowling’s writing is like in another genre.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by John Tiffany, Jack Thorne, and J.K. Rowling
I just don’t feel like I’ve completed the Harry Potter series anymore, since I’m missing this. I also very much want to read the new Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find them screenplays.

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
I wanted to read this before the movie came out, even though I’ve heard mixed reviews about the book. Regardless, I better pick this one up soon!

One for the Money by Janet Evanovich
Everyone and their mother (including my mother!) has read this series and enjoyed it. I miss long series since there doesn’t seem to be very many for adults. (Remember the Boxcar Children? Or Babysitter’s Club? Or Nancy Drew? Where are the adult versions of those?)

The Book Thief by Markus Zuzak
I’ve only heard good reviews of this book.

The Selection by Kiera Cass
It’s just so pretty…

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot
I’m halfway through this one, but then had to return it to the library. I’ve heard good things about this book.

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
I bought this on Black Friday years and years and years ago. And since then it’s been on my shelf reminding me that I still want to read it!

Which book do you think I should start with? What’s on your backlist?

❤ Annette

backlist

Top Ten Tuesday: Bookstores and Libraries I’ve Always Wanted to Visit

This post is part of Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.

The top ten bookstores or libraries that I want to visit are:

  1. Library of Congress – To be honest, this is probably the only one that was already on my someday list. The one day I had in Washington DC was a Sunday, so the Library of Congress was closed, which was a huge disappointment. I’ll make it there one day though!
  2. Powell’s Books in Portland, Oregon – The country’s biggest independent bookstore. I’d be a sad bookworm if I didn’t get to visit this one some day.
  3. New York Public Library on 5th Ave, New York, New York – You know, the one with the lion statues outside. (After some Googling, I now know these lions are named Patience and Fortitude, which is pretty cool.) Anyways, the New York Public library has always held a sort of gleam for me. And I was quite jealous of my friend who got to use the library regularly while she lived in New York.
  4. The Seattle Public Library – This library looks architecturally really cool. Plus, I sort of just want to go to Seattle. 😛 Arizona is finally at a managable temperature, but I know it won’t last long! Seattle would be a nice break.
  5. Central Library at Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico – This library looks SO COOL! I can’t imagine how much information and culture is there to soak up! (Fun fact – I almost studied abroad in Mexico until my university changed its programs.)
  6. Vatican Library – I’ve been to St.  Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican Museum, but not the Vatican Library. To be honest, I’m not even sure that’s a place the public can go? Regardless, it would be an amazing place to visit!
  7. Singing Wind Bookshop, in Benson, Arizona – This bookstore sounds… interesting. But as an Arizonan book lover, I would be remiss if I never made it here.
  8. Strand Book Store in New York, New York – Apparently this place has 18 miles of books! I’d love to get lost in this place.
  9. The Poisoned Pen in Scottsdale, Arizona – It’s totally possible that I’ve been here before – but I don’t remember so I guess I’ll just have to go again! They’re relatively local to me and have a lot of great events.
  10. The Well Read Moose in Couer d’Alene, Idaho – My friend visited this place and can’t stop gushing about it. It’s now her top favorite spot, probably ever, which means it would definitely be something up my alley!

As I did research for this post, I realized that I have been to some pretty cool libraries and bookstores already. If you want to see pictures of one of my favorites, you can check out that post here. Hopefully I’ll share some of my other literary journeys soon!

What libraries and bookstores are on your list? Any that I need to add to mine?

❤ Annette

Copy of fall list

My Favorite Book Blogs

Welcome to another Top Ten Tuesday! (This is hosted by That Arsty Reader Girl, so go check her blog out. I’ll also be linking there.) This week’s theme is to share your top ten favorite book blogs. So here are mine. 🙂

I’ll be honest, I don’t read other book blogs as much as I should! I have a full time job and a dog, which takes time. Plus, I don’t have internet at home (gasp), so I do my blogging and internet-ing mostly at the library on the weekends. But, here are my favorites when I get time to read them! This is by no means all of the book blogs I read when I have a chance.

  1. We Live and Breathe Books
    Their taste in books is probably the most similar to mine, which means I get a lot of recommendations from this blog. They also read at an astonishing pace, which is great because that means they can share a lot of books. 🙂
  2. Novel Knight
    This blog is beautiful and super colorful! They also host the Beat the Backlist challenge. Just visiting their blog makes me want to pick up a book right away.
  3. Finding Wonderland
    I love their bookish photos especially. They also seem to have a someone similar reading palette to mine, which helps.
  4. Rae Gun Ramblings
    She doesn’t just do books, but they seem to be pretty central to her blog. I also love all the crafts and creative ideas she has!
  5. Modern Mrs. Darcy
    Her taste in books is almost exactly opposite of mine, but I still enjoy reading her blog. I sort of love that her posts aren’t usually exceptionally long, which makes it easier to read and remember.
  6. Annie Likes Words
    She writes about both reading and writing, which I think is pretty cool. Her blog is also pretty and her articles are interesting.
  7. Book Date
    I always seem to add books to my TBR when I visit her blog.
  8. Booker T’s Farm
    Their taste in books is different than mine (they seem to prefer horror/thriller), but they love dogs, so I’m still a big fan of the blog. 🙂
  9. Jill’s Book Blog
    I also seem to get a lot of book recommendations/TBRs from her blog. Plus, she manages to update daily (or more), which is impressive!
  10. The Deliberate Reader
    Another interesting blog. I especially love her New on the Stack feature, which always introduces me to new and interesting books.

That’s what I’ve got! What blogs should I add to this list!

(Honorable mention goes to Flamingo Toes, which is a crafting blog that was my gateway to the whole wide world of blogging, years and years ago.)

❤ Annette

fav book blogs

1 Year Ago: Ten Book Recommendations for Those in a Reading Slump

Top Ten Novellas/Short Stories

I don’t usually read a novella unless it’s a book between main stories of a novel. (i.e. It’s book 1.5 of the series). Regardless, novellas and short stories are the focus of this week’s Top Ten Tuesday. So here are my top ten. 🙂

I’m going to be honest, I don’t remember all of these. They made it on my list by having a four or more star rating on Goodreads. So at the very least, I liked them when I read them! At the very least, this is a great way to find a new author, since I usually only pick up novellas/short stories by authors I already love. Clicking on the images will take you to Amazon via an affiliate link.

Linking up to That Artsy Reader Girl, who hosts Top Ten Tuesday.

Stand Alones


Sixteen Kisses by Kelly Oram

A cute high-school romance novella. You can read my full review of this one here.


Fortunately, the Milk by Neil Gaiman

This is technically a children’s graphic novel, but its narrative definitely fits in the “short story” category.

 

Christmas


Married to Santa by Beverly Farr

I love Beverly Farr’s novels/novellas – they’re cute and clean. Plus, I love anything Christmas, so this one definitely meets the criteria.


The Shoebox by Francine Rivers

A super cute religious Christmas story.

 

 

In-Between Series


Reverence by Shelly Crane (Book 3.5 of Significance)

Story from the male romantic interest’s point of view. (Heads up that while I love this series, the author is not a very good writer, as far as grammar and such goes. You can read more about what I think of her writing on my review of another book of hers here.)


The Sound of Useless Wings by Cecil Castelluci (Book .5 of Tin Star)

This is a story about Heckleck, an intriguing alien who we meet in Tin Star.


Winter’s Passage (Book 1.5 of Iron Fey)

Basically what happens between book one and book two of the series. Not necessary, but nice to read. This is one of my favorite series of all time. (By the same author who wrote the Talon series.)


Elemental by Brigid Kemmerer (Book .5 of Elementals)

A precursor to the Elemental series.


Sister of the Bride by Susan Mallery (Book 2.5 of Fools Gold)

A short romance novella that takes place in Fools Gold. Heads up that this one is very insta-lovey.


Joyfully His by Jamie Beck (Book 3.5 of Sterling Canyon)

I love this series, so it was fun to read a cute novella about one of the side characters we meet in the stories.

 

What are your favorite short stories/novellas? Let me know in the comments!

❤ Annette