October Wrap-Up & Looking ahead to November

Reading


Paper Girls 1-3 | Life & Laughing | Waking Gods | Time’s Convert | The Colour of Bee Larkham’s murder | Cardcaptor Sakura: Clear Card #3 | Sawkill Girls | IT | How to Stop Time

Books read: 10 (4 more than September)
Pages read: 3711 (1303 more than September)
Average pages per day: 120 (40 more than September)
Average book length: 371 (30 less than September)
Favourite: Waking Gods

Blogging

Challenge Updates

  • Beat the Backlist (56/48) (+7)
  • Finishing the Series (7/15) (+/- 0)
  • Goodreads (100/100) – Goal achieved! Increased to 104.
  • NetGalley % change: +/- 1% (72%)

October Goals

  • Weight loss – back into the 11s
    FAIL – Honestly, I haven’t even been to weight watchers to know whether I might have made this goal but I haven’t been tracking my food or watching what I eat so it seems unlikely…
  • 4 blog posts, including 2 reviews
    SUCCESS – just about!
  • Take part in Dewey’s 24 hour readathon
    SUCCESS
     – 760 pages/2 books
  • At least 1 cinema trip & 1 date evening
    SUCCESS
    – thanks to reading week I actually made it to the cinema 5 times this month (A Star Is Born, The House with the Clock in its walls, A simple Favour, THUG & Venom). I’ve been too shattered during the week for date evenings out but we’ve had plenty of nice evenings chilling out on the sofa with food and tv.

November TBR

Life (352) | Scribd (started)
One Way (336) | Audible
Assassin’s Blade (448) | Reread – owned

Target pages = 1136

November Goals

  • Honestly, my goals for November are basically just to keep my head above water with my new course!

How was your October?

Binge Watchers #2: Legend of Korra, How to Get Away with Murder & The Dragon Prince

 

What I was watching last month…

Legend of Korra

In six words or less: Teenage girl with magical elemental powers.

Progress since last update: I saw all of seasons 2, 3 & 4 and am now a bit gutted I’ve got no more to watch!

Arrow

In six words or less: Bow-and-arrow wielding vigilante.

Where I’ve got to so far: No progress!

The Flash

In six words or less: Super fast crime scene investigator.

Where I’ve got to so far: No progress!

Currently Binging & Binge-stats:

Since my last update I’ve done a lot of watching – I hadn’t realised quite how much until I started writing this update! Last month my watchlist was at 52%, 15 days and 22 hours to catch up. This month, as you can see below, it’s at 70%, 14 days and 18 hours – almost a day less.

Currently Watching

How to get away with murder

In six words or less: Law students on both sides of crime (okay that’s 7 but I struggled here!)

Why I’m watching it: I watched seasons 1  & 2 ages ago but just never got around to season 3. I wasn’t sure what I was in the mood for the other day so I put one of these on and got hooked all over again so now this is my new watch-on-my-own show!

Where I’ve got to so far: halfway through season 3.

Sword Art Online

In six words or less: video games are all too real…

Why I’m watching it: it’s nice to have a short show to mix it up with, and there’s a season 3 now so it seems like a good time to catch back up!

Where I’ve got to so far: season 2, episode 19 – five episodes left of the season.

The Dragon Prince

In six words or less: animated show about last dragon egg

Why I’m watching it: this has been our replacement show for Legend of Korra, wtitten by one of the writers of Avatar (which we loved)

Where I’ve got to so far: all finished!

What’s up next?

I’m not sure! I’m watching Riverdale (and cursing the fact it’s only one a week) as well as Discovery of Witches but again that’s only one a week. I think I’ll watch Chilling Adventures of Sabrina when that comes out though.

The Colour of Bee Larkham’s Murder

The Colour of Bee Larkham’s MurderThe Colour of Bee Larkham’s Murder by Sarah J. Harris
Published by HarperCollins on May 3rd 2018
Pages: 464
Goodreads

Whatever happens, don’t tell anyone what you did to Bee Larkham…

Jasper is not ordinary. In fact, he would say he is extraordinary…

Synaesthesia paints the sounds of his world in a kaleidoscope of colours that no one else can see. But on Friday, he discovered a new colour – the colour of murder.

He’s sure something has happened to his neighbour, Bee Larkham, but no-one else seems to be taking it as seriously as they should be. The knife and the screams are all mixed up in his head and he’s scared that he can’t quite remember anything clearly.

But where is Bee? Why hasn’t she come home yet? Jasper must uncover the truth about that night – including his own role in what happened…

Plot: ★★★
Characters: ★★★
Readability: ★★★

The Colour of Bee Larkham’s Murder is a book that’s been recommended to me multiple times, pretty much always with a comparison to The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time (which I loved) so I figured it was time to finally pick it up. I listened to the audiobook – that’s how I’m doing a lot of my reading at the moment given my new commute! – and finished the 12 hours in 4 days.  To put that into context, my commute is about 90 minutes a day, which would have only covered 6 hours: half the total listening time. That shows how much extra time I put in outside of commuting, which is a good indication of how addicted I was!

The story is simple enough: Jasper Whishart’s neighbour, Bee Larkham, is missing, and he’s convinced something bad has happened to her.  It’s a reasonably simple mystery – there aren’t too many characters to keep track of – but as it’s Jasper who tries to figure out what happened, all our evidence comes from his point of view. His faceblindness makes it tricky, because you can never be quite sure who said or did what.  While this isn’t actually the only book I’ve read with a synesthete (Mondays are Red by Nicola Morgan) it’s nevertheless a very unique take on a mystery.  I enjoyed that unique spin, as I can feel like mysteries and thrillers feel a bit too similar at times.  Jasper’s colour attributions, his autism and the way he reacted to events was undeniably interesting, and I found it hard not to feel for him.  I enjoyed the plot twists and wanted to know what happened to Bee, as well as what would happen in the end once the truth came out.

While there were things I enjoyed about the book, there were some things I wasn’t so keen on.  Jasper’s observations were repetitive at times, and often long-winded: there were times when we not only got a colour description (which might be five or six words on it’s own) but also an auditory description for one sound. I felt the book had a slightly weird feel to it, because there are some quite dark elements involved in the mystery, but at the same time Jasper’s voice felt very young, similar in tone to most 9-12 novels I’ve read.  That’s not necessarily a problem, and I can see why Jasper’s voice was portrayed that way but it did feel a little jarring at times.  Another thing I found frustrating was the time jumps – the book frequently jumps back in time without any real warning, and because of Jasper’s face blindness, it’s hard to get any context for when or where the next scene takes place.  The book picks up pace fantastically towards the end but I just think it could have been a bit shorter, which would have stopped it feeling so repetitive.

One StarOne StarOne Star

To reread or not to reread? (Throne of Glass)

Rereading is one of those marmite concepts that divide readers and it’s something I’ve been thinking about a lot in the run up to the release of Kingdom of Ash. One Guardian article claims “anyone who talks about rereading a book is arrogant, narrow-minded or dim” and a BBC one points out “We have so little time to read and there are so many great books that we’ve yet to get around to”. On the other hand, Patrick Rothfuss is actively encouraging us to reread the first two books before the third comes out, plenty of book bloggers are fans of rereading (Micheline, Mel, even Cait who initially was anti-rereading because there’s not enough time!) and there was a lot of praise for GoodReads finally adding a rereading feature.

Generally I do like re-reading: most years I reread a handful of books (4% in 2016, 7% in 2017) and I’d initially planned to reread the Throne of Glass series over the summer.  Since I’ve been following the series for more than 5 years and this is the finale, I want to get the best out of it but now with less than 2 weeks until publication date, if I start rereading I’ll definitely be late to pick up Kingdom of Ash and so I’m absolutely torn!  Who better to talk to about this than other readers though, right?!

Advantages of rereading

  • No wasted time at the beginning trying to remember who characters are or what happened in previous books
  • Being fully emotionally invested in all the characters from page 1
  • Pick up more hints about upcoming twists, get more of the nuances of the story
  • Revisit a story you previously loved

Disadvantages of rereading

  • Can burn out on one author/genre/trope
  • Takes up time you could be using to read new books you’ve never read before
  • If you start too late with your reread (i.e. me, if I start now) you’ll be starting the newest book after a lot of other readers


On the one hand, I know I’ll enjoy rereading the series and I definitely spent some of the last two books trying to remember what had happened previously, so it’d be nice to avoid that (I know sites like Recaptains exist but it feels a bit like cheating!). As this is the finale, it’d be good to get the absolute best out of it, given how much I’ve enjoyed the series so far – I’m pretty certain I reread Harry Potter before the release of Deathly Hallows!  A few years ago, I’d have just reread, because I was reading a lot faster – getting through all of the books in two weeks would have been challenging, but I’d probably have managed it. Given my reading pace since starting my new course though, I’m probably looking at at least a month to get back up to date, and I have to admit I’m worried about spoilers.  I considered just rereading the last book or two, but I feel like that’s an unsatisfying compromise – I feel like if I don’t reread before Kingdom of Ash, that in a year or two I’ll end up rereading the whole series.  If that’s true, I might as well just reread now and get the benefit of maximum enjoyment from Kingdom of Ash…

I think I’m leaning towards rereading, but I am curious: what would you do? Are you generally a rereader or not?

 

Rereading Throne of Glass: what do you think I should do?

  • Reread all the books: the finale only comes once, get it right! (33%, 1 Votes)
  • Reread none: life's too short and there are so many other great books! (33%, 1 Votes)
  • Reread 1 or 2: meet in the middle (33%, 1 Votes)

Total Voters: 3

Loading ... Loading ...

 

Top Ten longest books I’ve ever read

Top Ten Tuesday is a feature hosted at That Artsy Reader Girl where each week has a specific prompt everyone is welcome to post a list with their own answers. This week’s theme is “Top Ten longest books I’ve ever read“.

This week’s list is absolutely dominated by two authors.  It’s no surprise that George R.R. Martin features so heavily, as the Game of Thrones books are notoriously long, though Robin Hobb was less expected.  Objectively I know Hobb’s books are big but they’re always so good I never really notice just how long they are!

  • A Feast for Crows by George R.R. Martin (1,061 pages)
  • The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss (994 pages)
  • A Clash of Kings by George R.R. Martin (931 pages)
  • Fool’s Fate by Robin Hobb (914 pages)
  • The Mad Ship by Robin Hobb (906 pages)

  • A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin (896 pages)
  • Ship of Magic by  Robin Hobb (880 pages)
  • Assassin’s Fate by Robin Hobb (853 pages)
  • Belgarath the Sorcerer by David Eddings (840 pages)
  • The Redemption of Althalus by David Eddings (800 pages)

What are the longest books you’ve read?