Friday, March 22, 2019

Fan Art Friday: Red Queen Series

Red Queen 4-Book Hardcover Box Set: Books 1-4
Today I'm showcasing the Red Queen series. I didn't find very much, so I'm a little disappointed. I hope you enjoy!

I like the last one the best because someone spent the time to create multiple characters, and they were spot on.

Which one is your favorite?

Like always, the pictures are linked to the source. Feel to free to see what else these artists have to offer.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Top Ten Tuesdays: Spring TBR

Created by The Broke and The Bookish in June 2010 and moved to The Artsy Reader Girl in Jan 2018

Books on My Spring TBR

I hope I get to all of these! A couple of these were on my fall and winter TBRs.

Call It Courage Leaves on the Wind (Serenity, #4)
Ruby Red (Precious Stone Trilogy, #1) May Bird and the Ever After (May Bird, #1)
Daughter of the Pirate King (Daughter of the Pirate King, #1) Bloodline (Star Wars)
The Scourge Angels & Demons
Rebel of the Sands (Rebel of the Sands #1) Redwall (Redwall, #1)

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Better Days

Better Days (Serenity, #2.1)Goodreads Synopsis:    Serenity: Better Days follows everyone's favorite space cowboys in a thrilling, action-packed adventure, where Mal and his crew take on a heist that promises a big payoff. But when one of Serenity's crew is taken captive and tortured, the gang must put their enduring differences aside and work together to save one of their own, even if it means losing the cash prize of a lifetime!

Joss Whedon returns to the world of his blockbuster film Serenity, reuniting with Brett Matthews and Will Conrad, his collaborators on the bestselling 2005 series Those Left Behind.

My Thoughts:

-    This was another fun adventure with the Serenity crew. It was like reading an episode of the show.

-    I really liked the letter from Adam Baldwin. I liked how he kept saying he was the one with the girl's name, or that it wasn't a girl's name.

-    The artwork was really good.

Previous Book in the Serenity Series

Those Left Behind (Serenity #1)

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Those Left Behind

Those Left Behind (Serenity #1)From Goodreads:    Here's how it is -- in a universe filled with hearts and minds as cold and dark as the reaches of space, one small Firefly-class starship named Serenity takes its ragtag crew of mercenaries, outlaws, and fugitives in search of a job, any job, that'll earn them enough cash to afford that most elusive commodity -- peace.

Joss Whedon, creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, unveils a previously unknown chapter in the lives of his favorite band of space brigands in the prequel to the Serenity feature film -- the blockbuster followup to Whedon's cult-hit TV show Firefly.

My Thoughts:

-    My friends and I are watching Firefly together. I've only watched it once, and it has been a while. Jenni hasn't seen it at all! Hava is a brown coat veteran.

-    As many of you know, the series wasn't long enough, and it left its fans wanting more. . . lots more. Thankfully there are these graphic novels. 

-    I loved Nathan Fillion's note at the beginning. I love his history of comic book collecting, and I love that his role as Malcolm Reynolds fulfilled a life long dream of becoming a super hero. 

-    I wish I could read Chinese. I felt like I was missing out on stuff, but I used the Google Translate app, and I wasn't missing much. The app lets you scan the dialogue, and it will translate it into English for you. I was disappointed. 

-    There are a few violent moments. I would not recommend this to people who are more sensitive to blood and violence.

-    This volume was like an episode of the series. It didn't answer any of my burning questions, but it was another fun adventure with the Serenity crew. I enjoyed it.

Friday, March 1, 2019

February Stats

Books Read:  7

How I Became a Spy: A Mystery of WWII London Those Left Behind (Serenity #1) Better Days (Serenity, #2.1)
King's Cage (Red Queen, #3) The Shepherd's Tale (Serenity, #3) Yarn Harlot: The Secret Life of a Knitter
Last Shot: A Han and Lando Novel (Star Wars)

Pages Read:  1,643

1 Star:  0
2 Stars:  0
3 Stars:  3
4 Stars:  4
5 Stars:  0

I read some fun books last month. I'm still not reading as much as I usually do, but I'm squeezing in all I can.

Goal Progress:

I am 12 books behind schedule on Goodreads. Yikes! Maybe I'll participate in a Bout of Books or some other read-a-thon, so I can catch up a little. (14/160)

I didn't read any of the books on my nightstand last month. *hangs head in shame* 

Still no Newbery books read this year, but I will!! (0/20)

No re-reads either, but I will!! (0/20)

3 of the books I read last month counted for the Pioneer Book Reading Challenge, so that is a win! Yay! (7/44)

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Top Ten Tuesday: Books with Less than 2,000

Created by The Broke and The Bookish in June 2010 and moved to The Artsy Reader Girl in Jan 2018

Books I Loved with Fewer than 
2,000 Ratings on Goodreads

This is such an interesting topic. I hope I have at least 10.

Image result for the true colors of caitlynne jackson Pretty Like Us
Agent Gates and the Secret Adventures of Devonton Abbey (A Downton Abbey Parody) Manga Classics: Emma
Me, Myself & Bob: A True Story about God, Dreams, and Talking Vegetables Anne of Green Gables: A Graphic Novel
How to Be Lovely: The Audrey Hepburn Way of Life The Eternity Key (Into the Dark, #2)
In the Shadows

I had more than I thought I would! I was surprised by some, but not so much by others. I do read some obscure things now and then. The comic books and graphic novels need more love on Goodreads!

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Pioneer Book Reading Challenge

Related image

One of my local independent book stores is doing a reading challenge this year. My friends and I are participating, and I'm really excited to talk about the books we check off our challenge.

2019 Reading Challenge:

First book in a series
Man Booker Prize Winner or Nominee
Book by a Female Author
Book Recommended by a Friend or Family
Newbery Award Winner or Honor
Pioneer Book Employee Pick
Book by an African-American Author
BOok from the Self-Help Section
Book by an Author You've Never Heard Of
Oprah's Book Club Selection
Publisher's Weekly Bestseller from 1960s
Book by a Nobel Prize Winning Author
Book with a Red Cover
Play or Screenplay
Book from the Poetry Section
Collection of Short Stories
National Book Award Winner or Nominee
Book from the Nature/Ecology Section
Book from the New Arrivals Display
Book You've Never Heard Of
Book Set in or Written About Your Home State
Publisher's Weekly Bestseller from the 1970s
Pioneer Book Customer Pick
Pulitzer Prize Winner or Nominee
Book from the Biography Section
Book by an Author Born Over 100 Years Ago
Book from the US History Section
Book from the Sports Section
Book with a Strong Female Lead
Book Published the Year You Were Born
Book Involving the Ocean
Nonfiction Book You Probably Disagree With
Publisher's Weekly Bestseller from the 1980s
Book Translated to English
Hugo or Nebula Winner or Nominee
Book from the Westerns Section
Book from the True Crime Section
Christmas or Holiday Book
History of a Foreign Country
Book with 500+ Pages
Book from the Science Section
Book from the Bestsellers Display
Book Set in or Written about Utah
Publisher's Weekly Bestseller from the 1990s

Some of these are going to be real challenge to read. If you notice, they want the people doing the challenge to come into the store a lot. They probably want us to buy all these books, but I'm just going to get books from the library.

If you complete the challenge, you get a $50 gift card to the store.

Monday, February 11, 2019

How I Became a Spy

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

From Goodreads   From the award-winning author of The Great Trouble comes a story of espionage, survival, and friendship during World War II. 

Bertie Bradshaw never set out to become a spy. He never imagined traipsing around war-torn London, solving ciphers, practicing surveillance, and searching for a traitor to the Allied forces. He certainly never expected that a strong-willed American girl named Eleanor would play Watson to his Holmes (or Holmes to his Watson, depending on who you ask).

But when a young woman goes missing, leaving behind a coded notebook, Bertie is determined to solve the mystery. With the help of Eleanor and his friend David, a Jewish refugee--and, of course, his trusty pup, Little Roo--Bertie must decipher the notebook in time to stop a double agent from spilling the biggest secret of all to the Nazis.

From the author of The Great Trouble, this suspenseful WWII adventure reminds us that times of war call for bravery, brains and teamwork from even the most unlikely heroes.

My Thoughts:

-    This was a fun story, but I don't have much to say about it.

-    I liked that the book was a mystery and historical fiction. It was fun to see WWII from a younger perspective.

-    I really liked learning about different codes and how to decipher them.

-    The relationship between Bertie and his dog is really cute. 

-    The story starts out slow, but it gathers interest along the way.

-    I think this was a fun and cute story, and I think the target audience will have a lot of fun with it. 

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Glass Sword

Goodreads Synopsis:    If there’s one thing Mare Barrow knows, it’s that she’s different.

Mare Barrow’s blood is red—the color of common folk—but her Silver ability, the power to control lightning, has turned her into a weapon that the royal court tries to control. 

The crown calls her an impossibility, a fake, but as she makes her escape from Maven, the prince—the friend—who betrayed her, Mare uncovers something startling: she is not the only one of her kind.

Pursued by Maven, now a vindictive king, Mare sets out to find and recruit other Red-and-Silver fighters to join in the struggle against her oppressors. 

But Mare finds herself on a deadly path, at risk of becoming exactly the kind of monster she is trying to defeat. 

Will she shatter under the weight of the lives that are the cost of rebellion? Or have treachery and betrayal hardened her forever?

The electrifying next installment in the Red Queen series escalates the struggle between the growing rebel army and the blood-segregated world they’ve always known—and pits Mare against the darkness that has grown in her soul.

My Thoughts:

-    I thought the momentum from the first book would carry on throughout the second book, especially with how things ended in Red Queen. Sadly, this one moved slower. The urgency and thrill wasn't there.

-    Most of the book is about Mare searching for more new bloods like her. It was interesting, but there wasn't a lot to move the story along. 

-    Mare was a jerk for most of the story. I didn't like the way she treated Cal, Kilorn, her family, and everyone else. There wasn't a lot of character growth from anyone. 

-    The repetition got really annoying. Mare's monologues in her head were long winded, and sometimes I just wanted to smack her! You are the lighting girl! I get it! You don't have to say it ALL the time!

-    Despite my complaints, I'm still enjoying the story a lot. There were still a lot of great scenes, and I'm excited to continue the series.

Friday, February 1, 2019

January Stats

Books Read:  7

And Then There Were None 17878931 Orphan Island
Glass Sword (Red Queen, #2) Star Wars (2015-) #50 Star Wars (2015-) #51
Elliot and the Pixie Plot (Underworld Chronicles #2)

DNF:  1

The Assassin's Masque (Palace of Spies, #3)

Pages Read:  1,598

1 Star:  0
2 Stars:  0
3 Stars:  2
4 Stars:  2
5 Stars:  3

I didn't read as much as I wanted to this month. My friends got me hooked on knitting, so that has taken up a lot of my free time. I'm trying to do audiobooks while knitting, but Netflix is so darn tempting.

I read some good books in January. I've never read an Agatha Christie book before, and I really liked it. I'm hoping to read more soon.

Goal Progress:

Goodreads says I'm 6 books behind schedule. I'm not too worried. I have time to catch up.

4 of the 7 books came from the stack of books on my night stand, so that is a big win!

I didn't read any Newbery books, whoops!

Elliot and the Pixie Plot is a re-read, but I'm not counting it since I read it with and for Gnome.