Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Book Challenge by Erin 19.0



5 points: Freebie – Read a book that is at least 200 pages: The Villa--Rachel Hawkins

10 points: Read a book set in Ireland 🇮🇪 🍀: Irish Gold--Andrew M. Greeley

10 points: Read a book with one of these words in the title: birthday, birth, day, fifty, or fiftieth 🥳 🎂: 50 Harbor Street--Debbie Macomber

15 points: Read a book that's title starts with E or G (articles The, A, or An are allowed): The Garden of Small Beginnings--Abbi Waxman [re-read]

20 points: Read a book published in the 1970s or set in the 1970s: Burn Baby Burn--Meg Medina

20 points: (selected by Vivienne) – Read a book inspired by a real event (i.e., historical fiction, true crime): The Pale-Faced Lie--David Crow

25 points: (selected by Molly) – Read a book with an animal on the cover or in the title: Claws For Alarm--Cate Conte

30 points: (selected by Kristen W.) – Read a book with a one-word title (no articles for this one): Committed--Elizabeth Gilbert

30 points: (selected by Carly) – Read a book that relates to food, cooking, kitchens, restaurants, or chefs: Taste: My Life Through Food--Stanley Tucci

35 points: (selected by Vinay) – Read a book on mental health; fiction books welcome, but we encourage readers to challenge themselves with a non-fiction book for this category: So-Called Normal--Mark Henick

Challenge completed on July 24

Tuesday, May 23, 2023

Nonfiction Bingo Summer 2023

 This one is hosted at this Instagram account, and runs form June 1 to August 31. I will get as many books as I can

1. Memoir or biography: Famous Father Daughter--Jamie Bernstein

2. Pop culture: Citizen Coke--Bartow J. Elmore

3. Book about gun violence: Everything You Need to Know About Gun Violence--Adam Fur-gang

4. Recommended to you: So-Called Normal--Mark Henick

5. Science and/or medicine topic: The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs--Steve Brusatte

6. LGBTQIAP+ author and/or topic: All Boys Aren't Blue--George M. Johnson

7. Book about climate change: Climate Justice--Mary Robinson

8. History from your own country: The Other Side--Juan Pablo Villalobos

9. History from another country: The Start of World War II: The Flood of the German Tide--Christopher Chant

10. Published by an academic press: The Story of Wine in California--M.F. K. Fisher

11. Book about disability: Sitting Pretty--Rebekah Taussig

12. Social justice: The Pale-Faced Lie--David Crow

13. New release: Spare--Prince Harry

14. On your TBR for more than a year: Committed--Elizabeth Gilbert

15. Essay collection: The Path Made Clear--Oprah Winfrey 

16. Published by an indie press: COVID-19 and Other Pandemics: Comparison--Don Nardo

Challenge completed on August 21

Monday, May 22, 2023

2023 Summer Reading Challenge @ Messy Middle

One of my favorites for the summer is now up. I will complete as many of the categories as possible during the time frame indicated.

It will start on June 1  and run through August 11, 2023. To enter, read seven books from 25 categories and leave a comment at the end of the challenge with the books you read. That’s all. No entrance fee, no hassle, just fun.

What’s different?

  • I tried to find a book we could read in community, but the author didn’t get back to me. So, this idea will have to wait for another summer. Is that something you’d be interested in?
  • A few new categories: read in a book in a foreign language, read out lout to someone, and listen to someone read out loud (not an audio book, an actual person) to name a few
  • The picture for the reading challenge this challenge was taken by me :). Have any of you every visited Cannon Beach Book Company (in Cannon Beach, Oregon)? Their website claims that they are the “perfect browser’s book store” and I agree. The owner and staff were delightful!
  • I lowered the “700 page book” to 600 pages 

What’s the same?

  • Many categories will be similar because reading is reading. As mentioned above, you will notice a few new gems
  • Choosing a penalty book within the first week of the challenge. A penalty book or category is one you declare to yourself I will read or be penalized. The last five summers I’ve selected a penalty book and it worked, except that my penalty book last year was horrible. I’m now a bit gun shy, but am reminding my self that my track record is 80% good books. I tend to choose “long” history books that I have meant to get around to and this summer is no different. My penalty book for 2023 is No Ordinary Time by Doris Kearns Goodwin (I have been meaning to read this for year and I like her writing). 
  • Like previous years, if you do not read your “penalty” book, you will subtract two books from your total.
  • The joy of reading!

What’s in it for you?

  • All who comment between August 10-14th with the names of the books they read will be entered to win one of ten $10 Amazon gift cards.

Drumroll . . . here are the categories!

  1. A biography or a book about history: The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs--Steve Brusatte
  2. A book you already own: Summer on the Bluffs--Sunny Hostin
  3. A book you’ve been wanting to reread: The Garden of Small Beginnings--Abbi Waxman 
  4. A book a friend recommended: Odd One Out--Nic Stone
  5. A Young Adult book (YA): The Best At It--Maulik Pancholy
  6. A book of poetry: Black Girl, Call Home--Jasmine Mans
  7. A memoir or autobiography: Famous Father Daughter--Jamie Bernstein
  8. A graphic novel: Orange, Volume 1--Ichigo Takano
  9. A book for professional development (loosely defined): The Path Made Clear--Oprah Winfrey
  10. A book longer than 600 pages (counts as two books): Dombey and Son--Charles Dickens
  11. A book with a verb in the title: The Lies I Tell--Julie Clark
  12. A play: Blues For Mister Charlie--James Baldwin
  13. A book about a country or culture you have never visited: The Villa--Rachel Hawkins
  14. A book that won an award: Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry--Mildred D. Taylor
  15. A book by someone with a different view point than you: The Pale-Faced Lie--David Crow
  16. A book by an author you know (get “credit” for supporting your friends 😊): Timeless Depths--Erica Varela
  17. A mystery: Calypso, Corpses and Cooking--Raquel V. Reyes
  18. A classic: Kidnapped--Robert Louis Stevenson
  19. An audiobook: Tales From the Arabian Nights--Anonymous
  20. A book with an animal: Claws For Alarm--Cate Conte
  21. A book less than 100 pages: Pinocchio--Margaret Hillert
  22. A book you want to discuss with others: Once More With Feeling--Elissa Sussman
  23. A book you read as a child: Little Town on the Prairie--Laura Ingalls Wilder
  24. A book in a different language than English (could be sign language, morse code, Spanish, don’t get hung up on terms 😊): La Casa Adormecida (The Napping House)--Audrey Wood (in English and Spanish)
  25. Read out loud to someone. Could be a whole book, a favorite passage, to a child: Read paragraphs for book group (see below)
  26. Listen to someone reading out loud (not an audio book, an actual person): Began reading of Heavy by Kiese Laymon for book group. Each person reads different paragraphs (Will be reading at work weekly; began on June 5)

26 categories (+penalty book) completed on July 30

Friday, May 19, 2023

Back to the Movies

Last week, I got brave and went to the movies to see Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret. I'd read the book many times and was eager to see it on screen. As with many book-to-movie adaptions, there were some differences. 

Even before the pandemic hit, I had not been going to the movie much. I believe the last time was in 2019, to see Last Christmas. When everything started gradually opening up after the quarantine, I was hesitant to do a lot of things, including going to the movies. Also, what was playing then didn't seem to interest me much. I want to save my money and time for ones I really want to see. I almost went yesterday to see the new Book Club movie, but decided against it at the last minute. I felt a little too rushed then, but perhaps another day. After being unable to do this sort of thing for over three years now, I've decided to get back into this mode gradually, though going inside the theater last week felt no different from years before.

I am still undecided abut seeing The Little Mermaid, since it opens on Memorial Day weekend. The cinema will be crowded then, no doubt, and I am not much for crowds. A local play production of The Little Mermaid is happening near me, starting at the end of July, but I'm not certain abut that either. I've not been to see a play since February of 2020, when my local stage company put on California Suite, their last production before the pandemic shutdown. They had already cast and scheduled Beauty and the Beast Jr, for that spring. That show finally place in November 2021, but I was still hesitant about going into these kinds of events at that time. I'd only gotten my booster about a month earlier. Slowly but gradually getting back. And trying to decide whether I want to see the Barbie movie in July. Still time for that, though.

Monday, May 15, 2023

A to Z 2023 Road Trip


#AtoZChallenge 2023 RoadTrip

It's time for the Post A to Z Road Trip 2023! This is a great opportunity to catch up on the many blogs you would have liked to have spent more time visiting, but didn't during the Challenge, and a chance to visit the blogs of people who did the Challenge that you never got to. And, if you're one of those people who did the Challenge but didn't get a lot of visitors, this is a way to let people know that you'd appreciate a visit. 

There's no set time limit to the Road Trip (i.e., no specific end date), so if you wanted to, you could visit everyone who was part of this year's Challenge between now and the start of next year's Challenge. If that's what you want to do, go for it! Most importantly, have fun!

(From the A to Z blog).

Thursday, May 11, 2023

Summer Reading 2023! by alisylvi@StoryGraph

 Now this looks like a fun one! I have not joined Storygraph, but will do this. 

Starts: Thursday, 01 June 2023

Ends: Thursday, 31 August 2023

Hello! This is a summer reading challenge featuring summer themed prompts! Tackle your TBR or read new books - it's your choice! Feel free to combine prompts and have a lovely reading summer!!

All prompt pictures are taken from Pinterest!

1. A Beach Read:

Read a book set on the beach or the ocean, or read a book while on the beach or the ocean! 

2. Road Trip:

Read a book containing travel or set in a country you would like to visit!:

3. Celebrate Pride:

June is Pride month! Read a book by an author in the LGBTQIA+ community or a book featuring LGBTQIA+ characters: All Boys Aren't Blue--George M. Johnson


4. A Midsummer Night's Dream:

Read a play or poetry collection: Timeless Depths--Erica Varela


5. Be a Tourist:

Read a translated book set in another country than the one you live! Even better if you read a book by a person with different ethnicity and cultural background than you: Orange, Volume 1--Ichigo Takano

6. Outdoor Picnic:

Go outside and enjoy the summer weather! Read an entire book or parts of a book outdoors! Feel free to combine this with other prompts! Big Summer--Jennifer Weiner

7. Strawberry Cake:

Read a book you think will be the cream of the crop! A 5 star prediction or something you think you will very much enjoy! 


8. Sunset Colors:

Read a book with a cover that has one or more sunset colors! Orange, pink and/or purple. Feel free to combine with other prompts!: Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry--Mildred D. Taylor

9. Summer Lovin':

Read a romance book! If romance is not your thing - read a book featuring friendship or a close sibling bond: The Hotel Nantucket--Elin Hilderbrand


10. A Refreshing Lemonade:

Just like how lemonade feels in the summer-  it can feel refreshing to try reading from a new genre or a genre you rarely read!  The Path Made Clear--Oprah Winfrey

11. A Long Vacation:

Challenge yourself to read a longer book than you normally do!:

12. Childhood Nostalgia:

Summer is a time when we miss our childhood summer breaks from school. Read a children's or YA book, a book you never read as a child, or do a reread of any book you'd like to read again!:


Challenge completed on August 12

Summer Reading Challenge: Read the Rainbow @Booklist Queen

 Doing this one again.  The challenge is to read one book with each color on the cover.

Red Cover: Odd One Out--Nic Stone

Orange Cover: Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry--Mildred D. Taylor

Yellow Cover: Midnight in Chernobyl--Adam Higginbotham

Green Cover: The Villa--Rachel Hawkins

Blue Cover: The Deep--Rivers Solomon

Purple Cover: Cool For the Summer--Dahlia Adler

Black Cover: The Black Kids--Christina Hammonds Reed

White Cover: The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs--Steve Brusatte

Challenge completed on July 30

Wednesday, May 3, 2023

May Bookish Bingo

 Here is the card for May.

My Books:

  1. Love, Lists & Fancy Ships--Sarah Grunder Ruiz (3 squares): E-Book, In a Series, Dance
  2. What Looks Like Crazy on an Ordinary Day--Pearl Cleage (5 squares): Book Club, Free Book, Physical Book, Mother/Grandmother, Children/Grandchildren
  3. Death of a Blueberry Tart--Lee Hollis (5 squares): Food in the Title, Shelf Love, Police/FBI, Free Space, Intrigue
  4. The Undertaker's Assistant--Amanda Skenandore (2 squares): Historic Setting, Not in a Series
  5. Encyclopedia Brown, Boy Detective--Donald J. Sobol (3 squares): Library Book, Puzzle/Riddle, Eye Roll
  6. Changeling--Molly Harper (1 square): Witch/Wizard
  7. The Long Winter--Laura Ingalls Wilder [re-read] (2 squares): Character is a Real Person, Cover is Pictures
  8. Aristotle and Dante Dive Into the Waters of the World--Benjamin Alire Saenz (1 square): Audiobook
24 squares completed on May 27

Monday, May 1, 2023

Blogging A to Z 2023: Reflections

#AtoZChallenge 2023 Reflections


This week, participants in the 2023 Blogging A to Z are doing Reflections posts.

This was my third A to Z, and once again I enjoyed participating. There were lots of interesting posts from other bloggers who participated, and many interesting different themes presented. 

Because I found so many things for most of the letters that fit my theme, I decided to draft the posts ahead of time, starting in late March. I was still revising each one as April began. Some letters, however, provided "slim pickings," particularly the ones toward the end of the alphabet. My Z post was the shortest, with only one item, and my C post had the most items. I have a feeling I missed some memories, but I was just scratching the surface. 

I was amazed at how many comments my first post had, and how the subsequent ones had fewer comments. The fewest comments I got was three on my U post (as of yet).  I'm glad for all the comments that came in. All are still welcome to comment on any of the posts. Thanks to all who commented and visited.

When the Road Trip starts in two weeks, I hope to revisit some of the blogs I already saw and visit some I missed at first. A lot of blogs participated this year, as is the case every year.  

I don't yet know about returning next year, but there's plenty of time to think about that. 

#AtoZChallenge 2023 Winner