Wednesday, June 29, 2016

June is Audiobook Month

I thought in honour of the last few days of Audiobook month, I would look back on the audios that I have read in 2016 so far...

Written by Mira Grant
Narrated by Paula Christensen & Jesse Bernstein

I had been wanting to read Mira Grant for a while, but never got to her. I had the e-book version of this book forever and I decided recently to go through my Amazon books and see what qualified to make the audio a reduced rate. This was one of them! I read Every Heart a Doorway under Seanan McGuire, and knew it was time to check out her other books. And, I am so happy I did! I thought I would be sick of zombies, but this manages to put a fresh spin on things and work really well. The narration was also really well done!

Written by Daniel Keyes
Narrated by Jeff Woodman

One of my favourite things to do with audiobooks is wait until favourite books show up in sales, and grab a copy. Flowers for Algernon has been one of my favourite books since junior high, but I had never listened to it on audio. Until now. It was a very simplistic audio. There was no music. It was just Jeff Wooman being made to dictate Charley's life as if he was really doing it. With other audios, that likely wouldn't have worked, but it worked with how this story was written and I enjoyed it. If you haven't read Flowers for Algernon, it speaks to what it is to be human and does it in a really wonderful way. This book is a bit older, but it doesn't seem dated. And, I think that kind of what makes it all that much sadder... 

Written by Linda Rodriguez McRobbie
Narrated by Cassandra Campbell

This was all kinds of insane. It is amazing the things that have been done by women in history. Would it have been as crazy if men had done the same things? Well, no, men have! But, men play a much larger role in the overall writings in history, so we have just learned to expect it. While the audio of this was really well-done, it delivered a lot of info and I think it might have worked better for me if I read it. I haven't listened to a lot of non-fiction via audio yet, so I am still learning how to retain it when it is all kind of being thrown at you. I expect to grab a physical copy down the road for a reread.

Written by Sylvain Neuvel
Narrated by full cast

I reactivated my audible membership for this book. I really wanted to read it and had heard good things about the audio. It was so worth it! I can't wait to read the sequel next year... I think I will do that on audio, too, but I also would like to get physical copies of the series to reread in another method. Maybe when the paperback is released! This was a really well-done science fiction novel. And, the audio recording was done so well. I think this was my first time doing a full cast performance and I don't think this book could have been done any other way... It really pulled you in and actually I think this book may be better on audio than just reading it, but I haven't read it to compare.

Written by Danielle Paige
Narrated by Devon Sorvari

I got this on audio during a sale, but then I read it on Scribd last year. I decided both to make use of this book that I bought and to refresh my memory for the sequels, I would reread it on audio. I think it was a bit too soon for a reread... I liked it, but it didn't blow me away because I think it was all too fresh. The narration was good, though, and the story is overall really good. And, I am sure I will appreciate the fresh perspective when I get out of this reading slump and finally read the sequels. 

Written by Leigh Bardugo
Narrated by Lauren Fortgang

Another book I had got on audio to eventually reread so I can finally read the rest of the books. I originally read this book in like 2012 or something, so this book was not fresh in my mind and it was nice to revisit. Now, if I could get out of this reading slump so it was not in vain! Anyway, I read Bardugo's new book last year and still had not read the sequels to this one. I figured that before book 2 comes out in her other series later this year, I should catch up... The narration was really well done on this one. And now that I remember what happened, I am looking forward to what happens next!

Written by Laini Taylor
Narrated by Khristine Hvam

Finally read this series! I have heard lots of good things about it over the years and was really excited to finally get it. This reading through my backlist of audiobooks has worked out really well! I loved the narration on this one and would have loved to read the rest by audio, but at the time my Audible membership was still on hiatus and I didn't anticipate reactivating it right away. So, I read book 2 and then was just not reading when I tried to read book 3... Hopefully I can get back to it soon! I frankly have not read many angel books overall, so I was happy for this very fun take on it. I have read Taylor in the past and this just reminded me that she is someone you shouldn't neglect!

Written by Max Barry
Narrated by Heather Corrigan & Zach Appelman

Sometimes when a book is getting a lot of buzz I will use an Audible credit on it if I have one instead of buying a physical copy. I remember doing that with this book... And then taking forever to actually read it! But it was really good. The narration worked really well and got to love a book about words and their power. It was a refreshingly different thing than what I have read over the last couple years. It reminded me a bit of Jasper Fforde's series, but only because it is about books and words. The overall ideas are very different. I definitely recommend this one!

Written by Jessie Burton
Narrated by Davina Porter

I have wanted to check this out since it came out and had the audio, so decided this year would finally be the year. I just don't read as many historical fiction books as I used to. It used to be one of my main genres. I really enjoyed this one, though. It is a time period and setting I have not read many books set during. And, while not really being fantasy, it still has a fantastic element to it. This made it right up my alley! Plus, the cover is wonderful and I kind of want to own a physical copy just because it would look pretty on my shelf!

Written by M.R. Carey
Narrated by Finty Williams

This was another book that got a lot of buzz and I grabbed a copy of. I have to admit that I don't like spoilers, so I don't always know what I am getting myself into when I read a book. Add in the fact the buzz for this was a while ago and I had no idea it was a Zombie novel when I started it. But, it was really good and so worthy of the buzz! I was still just getting back into audio listening when I grabbed this one, so I was very happy that it kept me engaged and kept my audio listening interest. I am really looking forward to the new book and will likely do that on audio as well.

Written by Ernest Cline
Narrated by Wil Wheaton

I needed to start getting back on the treadmill to help with my ankle recovery, but I was rusty on both the treadmill and the audiobook. (When I first tried the treadmill I could only handle the lowest setting... My treadmill sounded terrible so I stopped using it until I could handle a bit faster!) When you are nervous about something, go with an old favourite. I started my audiobook listening with Wil Wheaton and Ernest Cline, so I decided to start it up with them again. While not quite as good as Ready Player One, this was still worth checking out! And, I think that listening to Wil Wheaton narrate it made me enjoy it even more than if I had just read it. I look forward to more from both of them in the future!

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

30 Days of Books ~ Day 30

Day 30 ~ Your Favourite Book of All Time

If I had to pick one... It would be this one... For some reason this book will always have a special place in my heart.

Monday, June 27, 2016

30 Days of Books ~ Day 29

Day 29 ~ A Book Everyone Hated But You Loved

I honestly have no idea... I am sure there is something in my archives, but it has been so long that I would have read those books that I can't remember what other people thought of them! Now, if this prompt was book that everyone loved and I hated, I could write a list... Like, I enjoyed The Hunger Games, but was less than excited about the sequels. I loved The Knife of Never Letting Go, but then lost interest in the rest of the trilogy. (It is mostly because my favourite character died...) Twilight was okay, but the sequels bothered me. And, I just plain never fell for Harry Potter. This list could go on...

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Week in Review - Week 26

Random Thoughts

It has happened... The dreaded reading slump. It tends to happen around this time of year and I have no idea what the common thread is that leads to it. I know that recently it is because I find myself doing other things and then when I could read, I don't. Last weekend I sorted through all the old memories I had stored in my mother's basement. The stuff is all gone to new homes and I guess I wasn't feeling like I had done enough lately because then I decided to alphabetise my bookcases. I had done two purges recently and had books at my mother's, so this was a chance to make it so I could find things. This was probably the quickest I have accomplished that ever because I have less books than I have ever had before. At least in my adult life. Now I need to update my lists for the series that I look for second hand! And, maybe get back to reading... I find that graphic novels work when I am in a slump and I am sticking with my audio reading at least!

Graphic Novel Year

Runaways: Battleworld
Wonder Woman - Volume 2: Guts
Sex Criminals - Volume 1: One Weird Trick
Sex Criminals - Volume 2: Two Worlds, One Cop
Sex Criminals - Volume 3: Three the Hard Way

Currently Reading


Weekly Reading

Battleworld: Runaways (Marvel) ~ Another volume set in Battleworld. It wasn't too bad, but again nothing that knocked my socks off. I guess you have to look at this as one giant series and all these volumes as smaller chapters... These 4 issues spreads are just not enough time to really get invested in anything. I am looking forward to resuming regular series arcs...

Groot ~ I started this on Marvel Unlimited, but then someone lent me the trade and I decided to read it all in one sitting instead. Groot is a fun character and I really enjoyed this story set from his perspective! It is amazing how much you can do with a character that only says 'I am Groot' as conversation. This was a lot of fun and I recommend it!

Wonder Woman - Volume 2 ~ As comic series go, this is not my favourite ever but it is still fun. I had never read a Wonder Woman comic before this, so I am enjoying my first visit with a legendary character. But, you can probably tell by how slow I am reading this series that I just don't love it. It is likely my reading mood and not necessarily the series itself. I seem to be struggling with getting invested in stories and characters lately. But, I am still having fun for the most part and look forward to the next volume. Maybe it will click better!

Feed (Audio) ~ A bit earlier this month I went through my Amazon e-book library and took advantage of Whispersync to get the audio version of some books that have been languishing unread forever. This was one of them! I read Every Heart a Doorway last week, loved it, and immediately started this on audio. It was so good! I said I was having a hard time investing in stories and characters, but not with this one. If you haven't read it I strongly recommend both the book and the audio performance!

Sex Criminals - Volume 1 (reread) ~ I first read this last year, but forgot it on my reading list for last year so not positive when. Volume 3 finally was released so I decided to do a reread to refresh my memory. This is a very strange series, but really good! I mean, it is a couple that freezes time after sex and robs banks and other adventures. Plus, Suzie is a librarian and is in the process of trying to save her library. An idea that you cannot possibly imagine working to hear about it, but works well when you read it. Recommended!

Sex Criminals - Volume 2 (reread) ~ Moving on, this was the second volume in the series and concentrates more on the fact that they have found a group of people with the same abilities as them. And, they do not all act like Jon and Suzie do. It adds some interesting humour to the series! (Not that the whole idea wasn't funny all along...) It was nice to refresh my memory with these characters and what they are up against. If you haven't checked this series out, you should. Recommended!

Sex Criminals - Volume 3 ~ This all lead to the release of the new volume in the series. If possible, this volume is even more bizarre than the first two were! For starters, the writer and artist have a conversation in the middle of the comic about how to handle a fight. That was fun. And then they meet another person with their abilities and it is so bizarre I am not even sure how to describe it. And then the volume ends on a cliffhanger and I want Volume 4 ASAP. Once again, recommended!

New Additions

Sex Criminals - Volume 3
The Girls
You Know Me Well

Weekly Posts

Week in Review - Week 25
30 Days of Books ~ Day 23
30 Days of Books ~ Day 24
30 Days of Books ~ Day 25
30 Days of Books ~ Day 26
30 Days of Books ~ Day 27
30 Days of Books ~ Day 28

Weekly Pictures

Saturday, June 25, 2016

30 Days of Books ~ Day 28

Day 28 ~ Favourite Title(s)

As an aside, I have read all of these books and according to Goodreads I have not read any of them! I really slack on keeping track on my reading.... But, anyway, on to the prompt. There are other authors that have great titles, but I am going to go with Alexandra Fuller's titles. I love them! She is also a great author. She spoke at my graduation from university and I quickly read her afterwards. I keep meaning to get to her other books! If you have never read her, she writes great non-fiction!

Friday, June 24, 2016

30 Days of Books ~ Day 27

Day 27 ~ The Most Surprising Plot Twist or Ending

This is a really hard question... I am sure something has surprised me, but I am usually pretty good at guessing endings and plot twists ahead of time. Days from now something will pop in my mind, but at the moment I am drawing a blank... So, I am going to go with this book. The ending was the closest to surprising of anything that I have read so far this year. (If you haven't read this, you should!!)

Thursday, June 23, 2016

30 Days of Books ~ Day 26

Day 26 ~ A book that changed your opinion about something

Let's face facts... When I was a teen, I hated teen fiction. I just couldn't seem to find one that connected with me (other than Madeleine L'Engle, but I saw that as more science-fiction than from a YA viewpoint). Fast forward to blogging and review copies. One of my first review copies was A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray. It was getting a bit of buzz, but this was a different world than blogging is now... I figured it was not my thing, but I like to try and branch out a bit. And, I loved this trilogy! If I hadn't read it, I probably would have came around to the YA books that are crazy popular the last few years in a different way, but this was my gateway book!

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

30 Days of Books ~ Day 25

Day 25 ~ A character who you can relate to the most

Jilly! I love Jilly! I honestly am not like her per say, but I just have always been drawn to her... I think it is because de Lint writes regular people in extraordinary situations. It makes the characters easier to relate to while you are enjoying the fantasy aspects. It is not just Jilly. I love all the characters in Newford, but if I am reading a new book description for one of his books and it mentions Jilly... I get really excited! She may not be like me, but you can still relate to her.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

30 Days of Books ~ Day 24

Day 24 ~ A Book You Wish More People Would've Read

I am going to go with this graphic novel series I read this year. The author is getting buzz for Rat Queens, but I had never heard of this series before. And, I should have! I really enjoyed it and can't seem to find if there is another volume coming because I recommend it less if it doesn't get a better ending... I have lots of questions that I am looking forward to checking out the answers to. Plus, Peter Pan retelling in WWII. Great idea!

Monday, June 20, 2016

30 Days of Books ~ Day 23

Day 23 ~ A Book You Wanted to Read for a Long Time but Still Haven't

There are so many, but I glanced at my bookshelves and this is the one that caught my eye. I have owned this book for so long and still haven't read it. I just did a huge purge earlier this year and another one this past weekend. I kept this book through all the purges. I need to read it because I have no doubt that I will like it, but I have found I am reading a lot more fantasy than historical fiction in the last couple years. It is just where my mood is... I need to get back to a favourite genre, though!