April has been a better month for me, in terms of both reading and blogging, which I’m really glad about. Without further ado, let’s begin!
The Revenge Playbook – 5 stars
The Giver – 4.5 stars
An Ember in the Ashes – 4.5 stars
Gathering Blue – 4 stars
Kindred Spirits (a novella) – 4.5 stars
The main reason I did so well when it came to reading this month was thanks to the Dewey’s 24 hour Readathon that helped me to read 2 books and a novella. I had a pretty good reading month in terms of ratings, which all of my books being 4 star or more. Sometimes when I have months like these I wonder if I’m too generous in my ratings, but I figure I’ve just got good at picking books I like so I rarely read books below 3 stars.
I’m really pleased with all my posts this month and I hope you enjoyed them too!
I’m not sure what’s going to happen in the next month as my exams start really soon (Argggggghhhhh!!!!) so I won’t read anything and probably won’t post very much. Don’t worry though, I haven’t abandoned you and really appreciate your support whilst I’m busy. Thanks!
Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme from the Broke and Bookish that inspires booklover to create lists of bookish things. Check them out here.
- The smell of books – you know exactly what I mean! I confess to being a serial book sniffer, they just smell so good!
- Seeing someone on a bus reading a book you love – There is nothing like seeing someone else enjoying one of your hobbies. I do sometimes struggle not to pounce on them and fangirl or to warn them about the ending!
- Being able to fangirl with others about books – It’s just so great to share your passions with others and this applies to books too.
- Lending a book to a friend and sharing the love – Recently I’ve lent a whole pile of books to a friends and now she’s eagerly awaiting the next book in the series from me. It’s so nice to have someone to talk to when it comes to your faves.
- Receiving a mysterious book shaped parcel – Sometimes I arrive home from school and there’s a parcel I’m not expecting from a publisher and it completely makes my day!
- Wearing fandom merch proudly in public – Often this can be a great conversation starter. The number of conversations I’ve had about Harry Potter due to my Gryffindor t-shirts is amazing.
- Being able to read an entire book in one sitting – There is something so satisfying about being able to read a book all in one go without any interruptions. It’s so beautiful.
- Attending a bookish event with other bookworms – This is the ultimate way to make new bookish friends. I’ve been to a whole range of bookish events and I’ve loved every single one of them.
- Getting a book you preordered ages ago. – Sometimes I preorder books so early in advance I forget they’re even coming so they are such a nice surprise and make me super grateful to past Emily.
- Being part of the book blogging community – How could I not mention this? This must be my greatest bookworm delight, being part of a lovely community that loves books as much as I do.
So, in the last 24 hours I’ve been taking part in Dewey’s 24 readathon by reading and cheering for #TeamRobin. Last year all I did was cheering and I enjoyed that so much I knew I’d definitely want to do it again. This year I decided to just go for it and read as well and I was super pleased with how much I managed to achieve.
I knew before I started I had lots of work and multiple social commitments so I didn’t have high hopes but I managed:
2 books and a novella
5+ hours of reading
An awful lot of cheering/chatting
The books I read were Kindred Spirits By Rainbow Rowell (4 stars), The Giver By Lois Lowry (4.5 stars) and An Ember in the Ashes By Sabaa Tahir (4.5 stars).
Once again it was nice to chat with loads of different book lovers from all over and just talk about the books we’re reading. I’m definitely looking forward to the next readathon and getting a full night’s sleep tonight!
- WordPress – Obviously the first app every single blogger needs is WordPress (or Blogger). This allows you to write and post your posts, view other blogger’s posts and look at your notifications and stats. This one is definitely 100% a necessity. It means your blogging isn’t constrained to when you’re sat at your computer – it can be done on the go!
- Twitter – In my mind, this one is another essential. Blogging just isn’t the same without social media and the opportunity to connect with others. Twitter allow you to do just that and I love being able to access that when I’m out and about.
- Goodreads – This app is so handy for keeping track of what you’ve read, what other have read and for checking out reviews before you choose to read a book. I also love the annual reading goal and being able to see how I’m doing on my phone.
- Wunderlist –I love this app as I can make tonnes of different lists to do with my blogging and keep track of it all. Currently I think I have lists of: ARCS to read, post ideas, reviews to write and admin to do. I’m a huge fan of lists so I love being able to write them online as well.
- Bloglovin – Bloglovin is a great way to keep track of other people’s blogs and posts you want to read, especially if they’re based on various different blogging platforms. The app isn’t the best but it is nevertheless a way of accessing the blogs you want to easily.
- Google Sheets – I love this app ever since I downloaded a spreadsheet off some fabulous book blog which allowed me to keep track of all the books I’ve read this year as well as all the books I’ve received. It’s just wonderful!
- Evernote/Writer – This app just comes in handy when you’re trying to draft posts and is super simple to use and really usual.
So what apps do you use whilst blogging? Let me know!
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Ah. Healthy food. It is deep, meaningful, and probably won a lot of awards but, um, it really isn’t your thing.
All The Bright Places By Jennifer Niven. Everyone else seems to love this book but I just wasn’t bothered. To me, it felt unoriginal and a lot like A Fault in Our Stars due to the quirky characters, one of whom was destined to die, who both loved an obscure piece of literature. Overall I wasn’t bothered by it and gave it 2.5 stars.
WHY DO THESE EXIST?
This question has been the hardest for me to answer, because I can’t think of a book I wish didn’t exist, so instead I’m going to go with a category of books. And that category is books you have to read and analyse for school, because that, in my mind, completely kills a book.
3. Chocolate Kisses:
Aww…this novel had the best romance.
Walk The Edge By Katie McGarry. Since I’ve read this book recently, it’s very much still in my head so it was the first book I thought of. The romance between Breanna and Razor was so adorable and was rooting for them the whole way through!
4. Gummy Spiders
Eek! You made sure to check under your bed every night for a week after reading this scary one.
The Mara Dyer series. I don’t read any horror books so this is as close as I get to a creepy novel. I’m not really a fan of scary books or films in general so this series was plenty creepy for me. (Yes, I know I’m a wimp!)
5. Jumbo Lollypop
This took you forever to get through, but hey! You did it!
The Raven Boys. I know a lot of people are huge fans of this book but to be honest, I’m not sure it was really for me. I took ages to read it, especially the beginning as I just couldn’t get into it. The reason it took me so long to read was because I just didn’t want to sit down and read it so avoided it, meaning it took weeks to finish!
6. Cotton Candy:
Admit it, you loved this when you were younger (you probably still do). Think: children’s or MG fiction.
Percy Jackson. I absoluetely loved this series from the age of about 8 or 9 upwards and it still find it so much fun. I’ve been meaning to reread this entire series but I just haven’t had time, so I might do that after my exams. Percy Jackson is just hilarious and so much fun to read.
I’ve decided I’m going to do a set of three posts about some of my unfinished series. This is post number one, about series I’m never going to finish. Following it will be series I own and want to finish and then series I’ve yet to my hands on but really want to finish.
When you try a new series, sometimes it works out and tragically sometimes I doesn’t. These are some series I’ve read recently that I’m not going to finish because generally the first book didn’t capture my interest.
The Selection – I read the first two books of this series but then I got bored and never really felt the need to pick up the next book, so I didn’t. To me, the characters were all rather 2D and no one wants to read about flat characters.
Uglies – I’ve read the first book in this series and the premise seemed vaguely interesting however I didn’t really care for the characters or feel a great desire to read on so that series was ditched!
Delirium – This book had too many plot twists for me. The final plot twist revealed at the end of book two was unrealistic and too be honest, frustrating! After that, I couldn’t bare to read on, so it was farewell to the Delirium series.
Scarlet – I read the first book because I loved the idea of a Robin Hood retelling but this book was disappointing so I won’t be continuing with the series. I didn’t get attached to the main character so if I’m being honest I don’t care what happens to her in book two.
Wither – I bought this book on a whim for about £1 in The Works and although the idea was really interesting, it’s been about 2 years and I haven’t picked up the second book which shows that I’m not really that bothered for the book.
Generally it seems the reason I ditch books is because I don’t like the characters or I’m not that bothered to read on.
What are some of your unfinished series you’re never going to read?
Why do you ditch series?
Since we’re a quarter of the way through the year, I’ve decided to look back at my New Year’s resolutions when it came to books and blogging and see how I’m doing so far.
Read 64 books – So far I’ve read 11 books, which Goodreads says makes me 6 books behind schedule but I always knew this was going to happen. I know I’m going to get very behind, but I’m hoping to catch up over the summer holidays.
Read 3 classics – I haven’t read a classic yet this year, but I’m determined to achieve this goal and I even have some classics on my shelf to choose from. However since I’ve only read 11 books, I’m not that surprise that none of them are classics.
Join in with some reading challenges – I joined a challenge where I’m trying to read more books that I already own instead of new buys, ARCS or preorders. I was aiming to read at least one older book per month but out of the 11 books I’ve read so far in 3 months, only 2 fit in this category so technically I’m behind but I’m confident I can complete this challenge.
Request ARCs sensibly and read and review them in time – I haven’t requested any ARCS specifically however I have been sent some by authors and publishers and I must confess to not having read them all or even reviewed all the ones I have read. That reminds me I really should get on that!
Review half the books I read this year – So far this year I’ve written 6 reviews, but 2 of them are for books I read in 2015 so technically don’t count. That means I’ve written 4 review for 11 books read which isn’t terrible, but I’m going to try and do better to reach my goal.
Post twice a week – I have already majorly failed at this one by having an almost month long blogging slump where I barely posted. so far this year I have posted 24 posts, which is just under 2 a week and to be honest I’m not that optimistic I’ll manage to succeed at this during exams but I’ll just have to try and schedule posts.
Always reply to comments – I keep getting behind on this one, but I’m trying to catch up and I’m always aiming to reply to everyone’s comments so if I haven’t got to yours yet, thank you, sorry and I’ll get there. Every comment means the world to me, but often I don’t have time to reply straight away and then end up with a backlog. This is a problem I’m going to solve.
Join in with blogging events – I’ve joined in with 2 bloggiestas as well as the Love-a-thon so far so I think I’m doing pretty well at this goal. I’m looking forward to doing even more in the rest of the year though, because I just love blogging events.
You can check out my original New Year’s Resolutions post here.