My #Readathon Recs!

Tomorrow is Dewey’s Readathon – whoot! I absolutely adore the 24 hour readathon. It is The Best Way to Get Out of a Reading Funk TM. If you haven’t signed up… why not?!

But choosing the books to tackle during your readathon? That’s kinda tough. As a general rule, I look for YA novels (as they are shorter), Graphic Novels and books from authors I know I love. But, to be honest, you won’t know what you should be reading until you pick up the book you shouldn’t.

That said, here are a couple of books I think are perfect for a readathon. They are addictive, mind-blowingly good and should certainly keep you up all night. Usually, that latter point is one you might want to avoid… but not during a 24 hour readathon!

Dare You To (Pushing the Limits #2) by Katie McGarry

Dare You To by Katie McGarry (Goodreads)

I just finished this book a couple of weeks ago and was completely in love. I read this sucker in a single sitting; I was 1000% addicted. It takes a few chapters to get into it, but it is completely worth it.

The Summoning by Kelley Armstrong

The Summoning by Kelley Armstrong (Goodreads)

This one won’t be a surprise to my long-time readers! I ADORE this series. It was what got me into the YA genre and resulted my first read-it-in-one-sitting reading experience since Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. It was that good. And since this book came out quite a few years ago, it might be new to some of you…?

Temeraire by Naomi Novik

Temeraire by Naomi Novik (Goodreads)

This is my rare adult novel choice: despite being rather wordy – you might not finish it during the readathon – it is fantastically addictive. While reading it, I wanted (and still do) to move immediately to the universe Naomi created.

So, I hope this gave you a few ideas! Comment or tweet me if you have any suggestions for books I should pick up tomorrow!

Read-a-thon Mini-Challenge: Show It Off!

Hey there, fellow read-a-thon-ers!

Thinking about sneaking a nap in? No way! Grab a cup of tea or coffee (or a Red Bull) because you’re in for the long-haul now. While you’re at it, get out your camera’s for Hour 20 “Show It Off” Mini-challenge.

Here’s what I want you to do: I want you to show off a book (or books) from your library that you are extremely proud of. The unique, signed or simply dear-to-your-heart editions that you’d grab if there were a fire.

Need some examples? Well, how about that signed, personalised edition by your favourite author? Or how about that shelf of painstakingly-collected of every Jane Austen-related book in existence? Perhaps you’ve an extremely dog-eared copy of a book that’s been passed down through your family? Anything goes – just make it something special to you.

Me? I want to show you two very special sets of J.R.R. Tolkien books. The Hobbit belonged to my grandfather and is a 1966 stunning hardcover edition. Then there’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy, from 1965, that belongs to my mother (she kindly lets me read them) and that she’s had since she was a girl. These books have followed us across oceans and into several different homes – they’re special and they’re beautiful. They are the representation of Tolkien that I grew up with, and I can’t imagine his writing any other way.

lotr-3 My Antique copy of LOTR
The complete trilogy (left) and The Fellowship of the Ring (right) without its dust-jacket.
 hobbit
The Hobbit with its slipcase.
As you can see, they are well-loved but still in fantastic condition considering they are almost 50 years old! If you can’t tell from the photos, both editions have engravings on them: Dwarvish on The Hobbit, and the Black Speech of Mordor on The Lord of the Rings.
Now, show off yours!
  • Take a picture of a book/books from your library you really want to show off: signed editions, rare editions, obsessively-organized Sherlock Holmes collections – just whatever is special to you!
  • Post your photo on your blog, twitter, facebook, flickr, etc. then add your link below.
  • If your email address is not on your blog/twitter/etc., please post it in the comments with the number of your entry. (i.e. “I’m Sarah, entry #5, my email is…”)
  • One winner will be chosen to receive a $15/£10 gift certificate to Amazon.
  • This challenge will close at 5 am CDT / 12 noon CET.
ETA: CHALLENGE NOW CLOSED! If you missed the deadline but have taken a picture, please share it in the comments! Winner: Kim @ Page after Page!

 

Dewey’s 24-hour Readathon: TBR pile, Updates and Mini-Challenges

Dewey's ReadathonIt’s Readathon season once again! I am so very excited about this year’s readathon. For starters, I am going to be hosting a challenge at Hour 20 – stay tuned for that, it will be brilliant! – and I have decided to ignore all my regular TBR books, and focus on some that have been on my shelves for ages. It’s really rather self-indulgent of me – I can’t wait to get started!

No idea what I’m on about? Head over to http://24hourreadathon.com/ to find out more and to sign up! Then check out twitter and follow #readathon @readathon and #RahRahReadathon for more updates.

So, what’s on my TBR pile?

I’ve chosen a really diverse set of books this year; I’ve got anthologies, a graphic novel, some contemporary YA, a few next-in-the-series, and a first-in-the-series. Diversity is key for readathons – you always need that back-up novel for when things start to turn south.

This pile is also a shout-out to my very first Readathon back in 2010, when I read Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles and Strange Angels by Lili St. Crow. Now I’ve the sequels to those books on my pile for this readathon! Symmetry, guys, symmetry.

  • Corsets and Clockwork (Anthology)
  • Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead (Graphic Novel)
  • Enthralled (Anthology)
  • The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith
  • Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins
  • Defiance by Lili St. Crow
  • Chain Reaction by Simone Elkeles

Updates

Hour 2 – I’ve just started Defiance by Lili St. Crow. And… I’m a wee bit lost. I really loved the first three books in this series, but I think it’s been almost 2 years since I read them! I’m starting to get back in the swing of things now though…

Still, I think only in the Big Apple could you drop a huge white-pillared school for the half-vampire and werwulf hunters of the dark forces onto a big piece of prime parklike Manhattan real estate and nobody even care.

– p.25 Defiance

Hour 5 – I’m about half way through Defiance now – enjoying it but I get rather frustrated with Dru and Christophe. *sigh* Will have to take a quick break for work purposes, then back to reading!

Hour 8 – OK, I did take a bit of a break to eat and whatnot, but I have been reading. And I can’t firmly tell you that the Christophe/Dru business going down in Defiance is crazy.

Hour 9 – Well, that’s Defiance done. I really love how this series stars a properly tough female character, and how Lili St. Crow doesn’t shy away from the scary stuff. But the love triangle? Bloody annoying.

Now reading the Vampire Academy graphic novel – really enjoying revisiting this world!

Hour 10 – Graphic novels are awesome. They’re proper reading but are short enough to get through quickly. Think I will read Chain Reaction now!

Hour 12 – OK – nap time. But this will set my alarm so that it’s 100% Just. A. Nap.

Hour 18 – I BACK and read to rumble read!

Hour 21 – To be honest, I’ve spent the majority of the past few hours just commenting on posts. There have been so many great challenges and challenge entries – especially to my Show it Off challenge. Some of the books people have shared have been beyond stunning. ❤

Hour 22 – OK, so I am 33 pages into Chain Reaction and it is so adorable. OMG.

Hour 24 – I fully plan to continue reading Chain Reaction after the readathon ends. It’s super addictive and I don’t think I want to put it down quite yet.

Mini-Challenges

Hour 1 – Starter Questions

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today?
Today, France!
2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to?
Probably Chain Reaction… though I’ve started Defiance, and it’s fantastic.
3) Which snack are you most looking forward to?
The Big Bar of Chocolate I bought this morning.
4) Tell us a little something about yourself!
Erm, hi. Kay here. UK blogger who has somehow ended up in France (at least, for now!). Lover of bookshops (especially second-hand ones) and an avid reader. When I’m not reading books, I read a lot of fanfic… which basically means I read non-stop.
5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? If this is your first read-a-thon, what are you most looking forward to?
This is my third readathon, but I haven’t participated in one since 2010! They are fantastic experiences, but for some reason the last three never fit into my schedule. Rats…
This time, I am not going to get too stressed about how much I read. While, yes, one of the objectives of the readathon is to read a whole lot, it’s also a community experience.

Hour 18 – The “Challenge your Brain” challenge

A challenging book on my shelf: The Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell – This non-fiction exploration of myth has been on my shelf for a while now. It was a gift from my mother and has been described as a rather life-changing book. But its weighty-ness has made it a rather difficult one to approach!

A challenging word: This one I spotted in Defiance; I understood it off the bat from the context, but the word itself was new to me!

   di·ur·nal 
   adj.

  1. Relating to or occurring in a 24-hour period; daily.
  2. Occurring or active during the daytime rather than at night: diurnal animals.

Hour 19 – Book Sentence!

I love this challenge – I managed to give my sentence an environmental message and show off my Edgar Allen Poe doll. Mission Accomplished.
Stolen, beautiful creatures forever fade.

Hour 22 – Diagram a Sentence

OK, over at Word Lily we’re being asked to diagram a sentence – something that I had never even heard of! This will be my very first attempt at venturing into the terrifying land of grammar, but I thought I should give it a try.

Hour 23 – Book to Movie

Crystal Reed as Dru (Strange Angels).

Crystal Reed as Dru (Strange Angels).

We’ve been asked to cast a book from our readathon pile over at Reading Through Life. I usually love this challenge, as I usually have an actor on the tip of my tongue… but not this time for some reason. So I had a good, hard think about it and… BAM. Got it!

My choice of actress to play Dru from the Strange Angels series would be… Crystal Reed.

She plays the fabulous Allison Argent on MTV’s Teen Wolf, and suits Dru perfectly. She’s a lean brunette – just like Dru – who already plays a character that can kick ass and take names as well as any man.

Seriously, she’s perfect. I have stars in my eyes just thinking about her starring in a Strange Angels adaptation. ❤_❤

Hour 24 – End of Event Meme

Which hour was most daunting for you?
Probably waking up at Hour 18 – I’m still pretty impressed that I did it.

Could you list a few high-interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year?
Nothing specific, but people: graphic novels. Buy them/Borrow them/Steal them from your younger brother for the next readathon. They are awesome and make you feel super productive.

Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year?
Nope! You guys were absolutely awesome!

What do you think worked really well in this year’s Read-a-thon?
Not sure if you did this last readathon, but I really appreciated the tweets and retweets. It was a really useful way to stay on top of all the mini-challenges

How many books did you read? What were the names of the books you read?
Two: Defiance by Lili St. Crow and Vampire Academy Graphic Novel by Richelle Mead. I also started Chain Reaction by Simone Elkeles which I plan to finish today!

Which book did you enjoy most?
Hmm… well, probably Defiance. But I have a feeling that once I finish Chain Reaction, that will be the favourite!

Which did you enjoy least?
I guess that leaves Vampire Academy – which I really did like, but it didn’t have quite the same gravitas as the novel.

How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time?
I really hope I can do the April 2013 readathon – it depends on my schedule! This is such a fun community event and hosting a challenge made it all the more enjoyable for me. Plan to host another if I can!

The 2010 24-hour Readathon!

I had not planned on signing up for a readathon this weekend – but that was because I didn’t know about it!  The last readathon I took part in, I had exams on my plate – but for this 24-hour-readathon I have less to do and more time to devote to reading.  Not to mention my eyes kinda hurt, so no tv for me!

Dewey’s readathon just started (oh, about 2 hours ago), so there is still plenty of time to sign up!

Instead of what I did last time – a new post for every update – I am going to keep the whole readathon to this post.  Mini-challenges, updates – the whole shebang.

So, what’s on my TBR pile for the next 24 hours? 

  • A Madness of Angels by Kate Griffin – Yep, I am still reading this.  I don’t actually expect to finish it any time soon either!
  • Dark Life by Kat Falls – I have wanted to read this for SO LONG, I am almost nervous to start!
  • Burned by P.C. and Kristin Cast – Why oh why do I continue to read these books?
  • The Eternal Ones by Kirsten Miller
  • Friday Night Bites by Chloe Neill
  • Stargazer by Claudia Gray
Updates!
Hour 8 – I just finished Stargazer by Claudia Gray.  Bianca is still such a disappointing character… there had just been so much damn potential!  Balthazar!  Vic!  Lucas! Raquel!  Her parents!  Such awesome character, unfortunately narrated by a dud.
I has set me off balance and means I will take a bit of a reading break… not sure what I will start next.Hour 22 – I slept way too long!  Just I managed to nearly finish Dark Life by Kat Falls (has been OMG BRILLIANT).  Still, this was more reading than I’ve been able to do in weeks, so I am a happy bunny!

Mini-Challenges
Hour 1 questions

How many books do you have in your TBR pile for the next 24 hours? 6

Do you have any goals for the read-a-thon? To enjoy myself as much as possible.  If I sit around focussing on deadlines, I will just end up reading for speed – which is never fun!

If you’re a veteran read-a-thoner, any advice for people doing this for the first time?  I am not exactly a veteran, but I have participated before.  Don’t go too crazy with the mini-challenges.  They such up every drop of energy and then you end up posting them AFTER the deadline.  If something is going to interrupt your reading flow, just skip it!  Also, stick to YA.  You will get through them faster and feel like you have actually accomplished something.

Hour 2 – Back-in-the-Day Children’s Book Mini-Challenge

Hosted by Miss Wisabus – What were some of your favorite children’s books when you were younger? Do you have any new favorites now that you’re an adult? Have you included any children’s or YA titles in your Read-A-Thon stack this year?

I was a huge fan of the Animorphs series by K.A. Applegate. I started reading them when they came out, and read every single one as it was published – 55 books + extra super-length special books. I was a HUGE fan. Of course, I also read the American Girl books (such a shame about that company being bought up by Matel) and – as a tween/teen – the Harry Potter books consumed my soul. I read the first four about 20 times, and was one of the types that would camp out in front a bookstore to get a copy.  Why am I speaking in past tense?  I still am that type!

Actually, the HP were the only kids books I read as a teen. YA was not big when I was a YA, but I think I am making up for it now! 4 of the books on my Readathon TBR pile are YA!

And with that answered, I am off to buy unhealthy energy drinks and healthy snacks

Hour 5 – Show me the books! Mini-Challenge

Hosted by Crystal @ My Reading Room – Oh, how I do love pictures of my shelves/  And how I love to see pics of other peoples’ shelves – Enjoy!

I’m afraid that, because of my limited shelf space, I only keep TBR books on my shelves.  If I start putting them away, I forget that I own them and never read them.  So let’s look first at my Genre books – YA and UF:

And a few of my non-genre books, which are so rarely appreciated here on DBD.  These are actually my favourite books – nicely shelved together for people to fawn over.  You’ll notice a lot of Ann Patchett and Javier Marias.  They are two of my very favourite authors and I never get a chance to show them love… so here it is!  LOTS OF LOVE. ♥

Hour 6 – Microfiction Mini-challenge

Hosted by Iheartmonster – Fiction in under 100 words. This ended a lot darker than it started out – listening to Alanis Morissette does that to me:

I knew we would meet again. Perhaps introduced at a party, both of us eager to say “What was your name again?” As if we didn’t know.

Did that hurt? Good. Tell your mother I never liked her.

But attending your funeral is something else. People stand crying around your casket, looking at me with distaste when I check my blackberry. I guess can only fake so much.

Oh, by the way, I took the dog we got together to the sermon. He didn’t budge when your name was read. Guess he doesn’t miss you either.

And since I was inspired, here it is in image form:

April 2010 Read-a-thon: The End

Dewey's ReadathonOkay, so this is my final 24 Hour Read-A-Thon update. Guys, it has been absolutely brilliant – and kudos to everyone who managed the whole 24 hours!

Books finished:

  • Strange Angels by Lili St.Crow
  • Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles

I really loved both of these books, although maybe not as much as I had hoped to.  Either way, they were perfect reads for this rather exhausting readathon.

Overall, I felt like the readathon was more about posting/blogging/tweeting than it was about reading.  Which was great – there were some brilliant challenges that I was all too eager to participate in – but it also didn’t leave me all that much time for reading.  Alas.  Either way, you can probably expect more at the next October readalthon!

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