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SERIESous Discussion: Author Fatigue

SERIESous Discussions: Every once and awhile I will post my random ramblings about a bookish or blogging topic. Feel free to join in by making a comment below or linking back!

Have you ever found yourself getting tired of your favourite author?

In April 2019, I was starting to reflect on my reading and blogging habits and trying to figure out what I wanted to change to get back to where I wanted to be. One of the things that I quickly decided to do was stop doing Blog Tours. The main reason is that I just don’t want as many deadlines as I did in the past because my reading is becoming more and more sporadic as the year progresses.

>>SERIESous Discussion: Lessons Learned from Blog Tours

But one thing I really noticed when I was thinking back on the blog tours I’ve done in the last 2 years is that I always seem to choose tours for the same set of authors. Now, that isn’t a bad thing! Obviously as bloggers we have the opportunities to help spread the word about our favourite authors and I believe we should embrace that whenever we can.

>>SERIESous Tips: A List of Review Opportunity Groups

However, I noticed when I was reading and reviewing a book for one of my “must read authors”, I wasn’t overly impressed with it. That sounds a little rude and I’m struggling to articulate what I mean so bear with me. See, it was a great book but compared to the last title I read by the same author, it just didn’t measure up to my standards. And when I thought about it, I had read a lot of books by that author in the year and started to notice a downward trend.

Sure, the author’s style might have changed or maybe those last few novels weren’t at the same calibre. But then I started to wonder if I was getting author fatigue.

What the hell is author fatigue?

For me, it’s when I start to get bored with an author that I once loved. I start to notice it when I’m reading and not totally loving their work or I rate a book a little lower than I probably would have had someone else written it.

How does that happen?

I think there are a few ways that author fatigue can happen.

1. You read too many of that author’s books within a short time

Inevitably, you just start comparing the books to each other and because you remember the last one so well you can’t help but nit pick. Sometimes, that might work in your favour (for a more positive experience) but other times…

2. You start to discover the author’s formula

I wrote a discussion post nearly 3 years ago about what your expectations are when an author you love changes genres. And in that post, I touched a little bit on the idea that most authors have a formula or basic foundation that is present in all their books and you know what to expect because of it. For me, there are certain authors that seem to follow the same type of twists in their works and it causes it to loose some of the suspense.

3. Perhaps you’ve outgrown their primary genre

Meg Cabot wrote some of my all time favourite YA novels when I was a teen, but I find her novels have a younger feel to them that doesn’t necessarily relate to my 20-something self and I’m not a huge fan of her adult works either. So, I tend to not reach for her titles anymore.

I suppose you could say author fatigue is just a fancier way of saying you’re in a reading slump with a particular author. And I find the easiest way for me to get over a reading slump is to mix it up and try something new.

That’s the plan for the rest of this year. I hope that by decreasing the amount of ARC requests I do in a month, I’ll be able to relieve the pressure on me and give some of my favourite authors a break before I dive back into their works with a fresh mind.

Have you ever experienced author fatigue? Are there any authors you’ve had to take a break from reading?

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Monthly Inventory: July 2019

July 2019

Yesterday at work we were talking about the year is just flying by and WOW, is it ever!

This was a weird month for me. I tried to focus on my 5 Year 5 Book Reading Challenge and while I had some success, I also DNF’d three of my selections. That–of course–led to a bit of a reading slump but one great audiobook got me back in the swing of things…when I could find the time to read!

Usually July and August are great reading months for me but this past July was awful. I read half as many books as I normally do! And if I wasn’t reading audiobooks, I’d have only read a quarter of what I normally do!

And I think I set a record low for the number of times I actually logged onto my blog. I was doing pretty well as the start of the month but life just got in the way and my priorities shifted elsewhere.

thoughts

Total for July 2019: 11 Books Read + 0 Novellas Read

DNF’d: 3 Books

Last July: 21 Books Read + 1 Novellas Read + 2 DNFs

WHOA–what a difference! Just goes to show what happens when life evolves.

Standout Read (★★★★★)

Mister Romance (Masters of Love, #1)
I had one other 5 star read in July (Say You’ll Remember Me by Katie McGarry) but this was the audiobook that got me out of my reading slump. Just a great contemporary romance!

Biggest Let Down (★★)

The Pact
While I did DNF a few novels, this one was a huge disappointment (and one I probably should have added to the DNF pile). I really wanted to love this book–I’ve intentionally avoided it because I’ve been so eager to read it for the right moment. But it just fell terribly flat and pushed me into a slump.

thoughts

Previously posted series reviews that got updates:

thoughts

You can always get the full details on all my challenges on my dedicated page but here is a quick update:

5 Year 5 Book Challenge: 3+3 books added | 13 of 25 Titles – 1 Book Behind
Goodreads Challenge: 12 books added | 94/200 Books – 22 Books Behind
Tackling the TBR Challenge: 1 book added | 12/24 Books – 2 Books Behind

View my Challenge Progress Here!

Created by Lia @ Lost in a Story

I used to do a big Goodreads Purge twice a year but I like the idea of doing a little bit at a time and had great success last year doing this on a monthly basis. The idea is to go through 5-10 books on your Goodreads TBR list chronologically and decide if they should stay or go. My 10 titles consist of 7 “new to me” titles and 3 “previously started series” titles.

This month:

Relativity
Pass

Always Beautiful
Pass

Scared of Beautiful (Scared #1)
Pass

'Til Death: Volume One ('Til Death, #1)
Keep

Something Reckless (Reckless & Real, #1)
Keep

VIP (Rock & Release, Act #1)
Keep

Welcome to Sugartown (Sugartown, #1)
Keep

Renegade Red (The Light, #2)
Keep

The Fates Divide (Carve the Mark, #2)
Keep

Never Too Late (Willow Creek, #2)
Pass

Pass: 4 | Keep: 6

Grand Total YTD: Pass: 22 | Keep: 48

Did I give up on any too soon? Let me know in the comments below!

Each month I have a list of 11 books I’ve selected to read for that particular month. These books include review copies and reading challenge picks.

While July was all about my 5 Year 5 Book Reading Challenge (which is mostly owned titles), I want to dedicate the month of August to books I already own. There are a few exceptions (like audiobook titles since I get those from the library; and some sequels & ARCs I didn’t get to in July) but this month is all about books sitting on my Kindle and Kobo!

What were your biggest reading or personal accomplishments of the past month?
Leave a comment below!

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Blog Tour: Cruel Legacy (Cruel #3) by K A Linde

Synopsis for Cruel Legacy (from Goodreads):

Darkness swept in.

Smothering everything in its inky black.

I have turned into their worst nightmares.

And I will not rest until they pay.

For everything.

Other books in the series:

breakdown

SERIESous’ Top Picks: Must Read Author
Series: Cruel

Crosses over with the Wright Series

Author: K A Linde
# of Books: 3 (Full Reading Order Here)

There is a FREE prequel novella: #0.5 One Cruel Night

Book Order: Chronological
Complete?: Yes, Spin-off novel in works titled The Lying Season
Genre: Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Drama
Heat Rating: Hot
Point of View: First Person, Alternating
Publication Date: January 22, 2019 – July 16, 2019
Source & Format: Wildfire Marketing Solutions–eARC

Add: Goodreads | Buy: Amazon

thoughts

Why I Picked it Up / My Expectations:

I had no idea what to expect for this finale but I knew I wanted some great twists, fireworks and perhaps a happy ending? I was excited for the ride.

The Plot:

Again, this story had a slow build to it but the climb is worth the climax. There’s this air of unknown happening throughout the novel and it kept me hooked as I read. Natalie’s story is intriguing and she’s had some great growth so it was interesting to see it all come together in this finale.

The Characters:

I have to give some major props to K A Linde’s ability to ground all the characters in this story. I’ve compared it to Gossip Girl in the past but there is something distinctly different about this series and I think it’s the humanity of the characters. Yes, they live in this life of privilege and excess but somehow Linde has been able to make them seem like everyday people by grounding them through their actions and monologues. It isn’t only Natalie who has evolved as a character but its the entire Crew that has as well.

I AM HOPING SO HARD that Katherine will get her own book. Her character fascinated me throughout the series and we get some interesting developments in her story that have me hoping she will get one. I am excited for the spin-off The Lying Season even if it isn’t Katherine who is the focus.

The Romance:

It’s hard to say too much without spoilers but I was satisfied with this for sure.

Series Review:

>> See my review of the entire Cruel Series here!

My Rating: 3/5

[One Cruel Night 4/5] | Cruel Money 3.5/5 | Cruel Fortune 3.5/5 | Cruel Legacy 3/5

overall

This is perfect for fans of Cruel Intentions romance reads!

Read if You Like: Cruel Intentions, the Upper East Side
Avoid if You: dislike angsty, billionaire romances

similarreads

  • Little Black Book by Tabatha Vargo (Little Black Book Series #1)
  • I Bet You by Isla Madden-Mills (The Hook-Up Series #2)
  • Fair Game by Monica Murphy (The Rules Series #1)

K A Linde

K.A. Linde is the USA Today bestselling author of the Avoiding Series, Wrights, and more than thirty other novels. She has a Masters degree in political science from the University of Georgia, was the head campaign worker for the 2012 presidential campaign at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and served as the head coach of the Duke University dance team. She loves reading fantasy novels, binge-watching Supernatural, traveling, and dancing in her spare time.

She currently lives in Lubbock, Texas, with her husband and two super-adorable puppies.

Author Links: Goodreads | Website | Twitter

Add: Goodreads | Buy: Amazon

Book Tour Organised by:

Wildfire Marketing Solutions

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Monthly Inventory: June 2019

June 2019

In May, I made a lot of changes when it came to my reading and blogging and June was the first month of trying out this new approach…and it was pretty great!

I had a two main tasks I wanted to get done this past month. One: I finished all the ARCs I had signed up for (and resisted the urges to sign up for multiple review copies). Two: I only read sequels (with the exception of ARCs) of series I had already started. Both went really well!

And since we are halfway through the year, I thought it would be fun to do the Mid-Year Freak Out Tag (originally created by Ely and Chami) like I did last year:

Mid Year Freak Out Tag

Best Book Read So Far

Taken by Lies (Truth or Lies Book 1)

Best Sequel Read So FarThe Wicked King (The Folk of the Air, #2) New Release TBRTop Secret

Can’t Wait for Its Release

Rebel (Legend, #4)

Biggest DisappointmentTower of Dawn (Throne of Glass, #6)

Biggest Surprise

Paper Princess (The Royals, #1)

Need to Read by Year End

Queen of Air and Darkness (The Dark Artifices, #3)

New Fictional CrushTaken by Lies (Truth or Lies Book 1)Enzo

New Fave Character

Generation One (Lorien Legacies Reborn, #1)

Kopano

Tear Jerker

The Way of Lessons

Made Me HappyThe Chase (Briar U, #1) Fave Review WrittenTower of Dawn (Throne of Glass, #6)

The other highlight of June was watching the Toronto Raptors (finally) win the NBA Championship!!! I have such a soft spot for this team ever since I lived in TO during their playoff run a few years ago. It’s been a long time coming so it was great to watch them get to the end (and seal the deal!). And I loved how it brought our country and communities together. What a ride!

Image result for we the north

thoughts

Total for June 2019: 11 Books Read + 5 Novellas Read

DNF’d: 2 Book (my first ones this year!)

Last June: 14 Books Read + 0 Novellas Read + 3 DNFs

Standout Read (★★★★★)


I’ve been DYING for Celia’s story and this certainly didn’t disappoint! I need the sequel right now…the fall is too far away.

Biggest Let Down (DNF)


This the first book I DNF’d this year. This just wasn’t the book for me. There was too much dialogue and I couldn’t feel the chemistry between the leads.

kobostats

Every quarter I take a look at my Kobo stats to see how I’m doing. My Kobo is my main reading device, used for personal and library books. My Kindle is used for ARCs but it lacks the statistic features of my Kobo.

As of:

July 1, 2019

June 30, 2018

Total % of Library Complete

25%

23%

Total # of Books Finished

304

280

Total # of Reading Hours

2656

2511

posted reviews

Most Viewed Post

SERIESous Tips: How I Read 200+ Books a Year!

Most Viewed Review

Blog Tour: Slayed by Laurelin Paige

View this year’s archives for more posts and reviews!

thoughts

Previously posted series reviews that got updates:

thoughts

You can always get the full details on all my challenges on my dedicated page but here is a quick update:

5 Year 5 Book Challenge: 0 books added | 7 of 25 Titles Read – 5 Books Behind
Goodreads Challenge: 16 books added | 81/200 Books – 18 Books Behind
Tackling the TBR Challenge: 4 books added | 11/24 Books – On Track!

View my Challenge Progress Here!

Sequel Month #2!

In an effort to reduce the number of book series I have on the go (123 and counting!), I’ve decided to dedicate 4 months of 2019 to sequels. I had great results in February for the first month (approximately 78% of my books read were sequels). You can see the breakdown of what I read below:

  • # of Sequels Read: 15+2
    1. The Emerald Sea by Richelle Mead (The Glittering Court #3)
    2. We Can be Mended by Veronica Roth (Divergent #3.5)
    3. Fugitive Six by Pittacus Lore (Lorien Legacies Reborn #2)
    4. The Lost Sisters by Holly Black (The Folk of the Air #1.5)
    5. DNF The Game Changer by Jacqueline Snowe (Cleat Chasers #2)
    6. Fearless by Shae Ross (Pretty Smart Girls #2)
    7. Avenged by Amy Tintera (Ruined Trilogy #2)
    8. Five Days Until You by Monica Murphy (One Week Girlfriend #4.5)
    9. Revealed by H M Ward (The Secret Life of Trystan Scott #5)
    10. A Gathering Tempest by Catherine Payne Jones (Broken Tides #0.5)
    11. Crosscurrent by Catherine Payne Jones (Broken Tides #2)
    12. Allied by Amy Tintera (Ruined Trilogy #3)
    13. DNF Professor With Benefits by Hazel Kelly (Beta Brothers #3)
    14. The Towering Sky by Katharine McGee (The Thousandth Floor #3)
    15. Fireblood by Elly Blake (Frostblood Saga #2)
    16. Stolen by Truths by Ella Miles (Truth or Lies #4)
    17. Smoke in the Sun by Renée Ahdieh (Flame in the Mist #2)
    18. In Progress – At Any Moment by Brenna Aubrey (At Any Price #3)
    19. In Progress – Someday by David Levithan (Every Day #3)
  • # of Series Finished: 6+(1)
    1. The Glittering Court
    2. (Cleat Chasers)
    3. Pretty Smart Girls
    4. One Week Girlfriend
    5. Ruined Trilogy
    6. The Thousandth Floor
    7. Flame in the Mist

I’m SUPER happy with how many series I got to this past month! I finished up a few that have been in limbo for some years and it was nice to return to those worlds.

Cleaning Up My Goodreads Shelves:

My main mission for 2018 was bringing my “Want to Read” shelf (new to me books) on Goodreads to a number below 500—and I totally did that! So this year, I’m aiming for a “Want to Read” shelf that is less than 400 titles. I’ve also set a goal to get my “Sequel” shelf below 250 titles.

Currently

April 1, 2019

Want to Read (New)

468

465

To Read (Sequels)

247

261

While these numbers aren’t vastly different, I’m very happy that I have stayed the course. As you can see about, I got through a lot of sequels this past month which was FABULOUS! Now that the nice weather has arrived here in Canada, I hope to spend the rest of the summer reading outside and getting those numbers a little lower.

Created by Lia @ Lost in a Story

I used to do a big Goodreads Purge twice a year but I like the idea of doing a little bit at a time and had great success last year doing this on a monthly basis. The idea is to go through 5-10 books on your Goodreads TBR list chronologically and decide if they should stay or go. My 10 titles consist of 7 “new to me” titles and 3 “previously started series” titles.

This month:

Corrupted (The Manipulation Trilogy, #1)
Keep

Stepbrother Dearest
Keep

Filthy Beautiful Lies (Filthy Beautiful Lies, #1)
Pass

Inspire (The Muse, #1)
Pass

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer, #1)
Keep

Degradation (The Kane Trilogy, #1)
Keep

The Story of Awkward
Keep

Beautiful (Beautiful Bastard, #5)
Keep

The Bone Witch (The Witches of London Trilogy Book 3)
Keep

The Ersatz Elevator (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #6)
Pass

Pass: 3 | Keep: 7

Grand Total YTD: Pass: 18 | Keep: 42

Did I give up on any too soon? Let me know in the comments below!

While this is a monthly meme hosted by Avalinah’s Books, I usually only update every quarter.

My Progress for January to June, 2019:

ARCs Read: 23 | ARCs Overdue: 1+1* | Upcoming: 1

(May State: ARCs Read: 20 | ARCs Overdue: 2+1* | Upcoming: 1

*Titles given to me as a member of an author’s street team to read ASAP.

Going Forward:

DO YOU SEE THOSE NUMBERS!?! I’ve come a long way and I’m so proud of myself! I know I have a few street team reads to read later this summer and the upcoming ARC is a sequel for a series I’ve done blog tour stops for in the past. But otherwise, I’m commitment free for the rest of the summer so I’m hoping I can concentrate on bringing up my reading challenges (and getting those last 2 ARCs finished).

discussions

You can still join in on these discussions:

Each month I have a list of 11 books I’ve selected to read for that particular month. These books include review copies and reading challenge picks. The focus for July is reading some of my 5 Year 5 Book Challenge picks. Here are some of the books I have ready to go for July:

The Dark Days Club (Lady Helen, #1) Love Me Never (Lovely Vicious, #1) More Than Music (Chasing The Dream, #1)

I think I’m going to dedicate August to reading only owned novels so I can make a bigger dent in those numbers. Most of my reading challenge picks for July are books I own but I do have a couple of library reads I want to get in as well.

What were your biggest reading or personal accomplishments of the past month?
Leave a comment below!

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SERIESous Tips: How I Read 200+ Books a Year!


Since 2014, I’ve read more than 200 books in a year…

I really struggled with a way to start this post without sounding like I was bragging because I know that the number of books people read in a year varies–whether you’re a book blogger or not. Everyone reads at a different pace; not everyone has the time; and that’s what makes it such a personal number.

I read a lot of books in a year–it even shocks me–and that’s why I want to share some tips with you on how to increase the number of titles you read in a year! You might not reach 200 but wouldn’t it be great to fit in 4 more books in a year?

Years ago, I wrote a Guide for my blog: How to Read MORE! I wrote that guide back when I was a full time student. But since then, I’ve left school behind and have a full time career (complete with shift work, a dog and a house) on my hands.

You should still check out that post though because I have recently updated it! But I also wanted to highlight the 3 main reasons why I surpass the 200 books mark every year.

#1 – Get Into Audiobooks

I’ve shared my audiobook experiences many times over the years on my blog. I didn’t have the greatest start with them but they’ve become such a staple to my reading life that I can’t help but share my joy now.

> > SERIESous Discussion: How I Fell in Love with Audiobooks

Why are audiobooks so great? The fact that you can multitask while you listen!!! You can’t do much while you read a physical novel besides eat and ignore the world around you. But with audiobooks? You can drive your car to work; walk your dog; do laundry and chores; etc.

How It Helps Me: I choose to listen to an audiobook instead of music while I’m doing my chores or driving for more than 10 minutes. (I listen to the radio when I’m at work so I get my fill of music in a day.) I always have one audiobook on the go in addition to the physical book I am reading. There’s a reason why 33% of the books I read in 2018 were audiobooks and that’s because I could complete some of my daily responsibilities while listening to them. (Plus, I had a 2 hour commute to work 5 times a week!)

> > SERIESous Tips: 5 Ways to Get Into Audiobooks

#2 – Set Deadlines

This can be interpreted to be many different things and I mean it in many different ways. Deadlines could be anything from blog tour dates, to ARC publication dates, to simply the date the book is due back at the library. But by setting a “deadline” to finish a book, you have a goal in mind and you can start to plan for it.

> > SERIESous Discussion: Why I Love Participating in Blog Tours

How It Helps Me: Approximately 40% of the books I read in a year come from the library and another 40% come from review copies. Having those due dates allows me to focus on what I need to read and when. I get more motivated to find the time to read that particular title because I have to finish it by a certain date. Even just telling myself that I want to finish a book I own by the end of the weekend reminds me to pick it up when I have the time.

#3 – Embrace Novellas

For simplicity’s sake, I classify anything under 140 ebook pages to be a novella. And did you know that they count as a book read for your Goodreads total even if it is only 20 pages long? Novellas made up approximately 8% of my total reads for 2018.

How It Helps Me: I think novellas (or short stories) are super underrated as a book form. I love novellas for a lot of reasons besides inflating my reading stats for the year. For one, they help me overcome reading slumps. For another, they don’t require as much time as a full novel; so when I’m short on reading time, the shorter book helps me feel accomplished by finishing it.

I’m not entirely sure if I will reach 200 books read this year. I haven’t been reading as much as I usually do by this point in the year. But I do know that these 3 habits have helped to keep me on track and keep my numbers consistent from month to month. So we will see what the summer brings. That’s usually when I can kick things into gear since I spend every free moment outside reading when I’m not at work.

What habits do you think contribute to your reading numbers?

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SERIESous Discussion: Book Formats by Month [2]

SERIESous Discussions: Every once and awhile I will post my random ramblings about a bookish or blogging topic. Feel free to join in by making a comment below or linking back!


Last year, I wanted to take an in-depth look at some of my reading stats. I looked at how many books I read in a month (and did a year to year comparison); I investigated where I get my books from (library, own, ARCs, etc); and I wrapped everything up with a look at what type (audio, eBook, etc) of books I read the most in a month. Lots of things change in a year, so I thought it would be interesting compare 2018 to my previous years to see what type of reading year 2018 actually was.

I already wrote my post on the number of books I read in a month — you can find it here.

For this post, I’ve decided to combine my Book Sources and Book Formats posts together since they pretty much go hand-in-hand.

 

What I Learned From Last Year’s Post — and What I Did About It:

  • I requested more ARCs than I should have
    • now have stricter limits on the # I can request a month
  • Audibooks have a huge impact on my monthly reading
  • I need to read more books that I own
    • more readathon participation & reading challenges

But did I actually stick to those? Find out…

Comparing 2017 to 2018:

Instead of my crazy line graphs that I used last year, I simply tabulated my results:

 eARCsKindleKoboPhysicalAudioeLibrary
SUM:7686221539265543665231
201720182017201820172018201720182017201820172018
Jan4102193010645
Feb395244100658
Mar11120013204408
Apr8100131014541
May771020004682
Jun467162204730
Jul3511550157100
Aug685321015541
Sep340102013541
Oct680012004451
Nov1060210004630
Dec1111353006524

The Highlights:

The one thing that stands out the most to me is the fact that I read less of the books I already owned in 2018 vs 2017. I truly thought I read more than that. Even if I add in the 9 titles I DNF’d from my personal collection, I still fell really short of my 2017 numbers.

The decrease in library books initially shocked me but then I thought about what happened last year. At the start of 2018, I had three library cards from 3 cities. My “big city” library card (my post-post-secondary school location) expired in March. I did a mad binge-read of a lot titles that were available from there in February and March (which explains the increases there). I also lost my second library card (where I did my placement for school) in September. My hometown library is great, but it shares its eBook collection with the entire province so it can make getting the more popular titles tricky. Having that second card from a town with a smaller pool of eBook users helped a lot. I have since renewed that card (since I moved) for 2019 so I’m excited to utilize it once again.

Things that didn’t shock me? I’m not at all surprised by my Audiobook numbers. Even though I was part-time for most of 2018, I worked a lot of hours so I was constantly driving to work (which is when I did most of my audio listening) in 2018. Nor was I surprised about my ARC numbers. I definitely read a lot of ARCs in 2018; so much so that I was getting a little bit of burn-out from it all near the end of the year.

Moving Forward:

I had set my reading goals and challenges for 2019 wayyy before I ever tabulated this all up but I had a general idea of what those numbers would be when I created them. My goal for 2019 is to read more of the books I already own and I’ve made that the focus of my reading challenges for the year. And although I say it every year, I’m really sticking to my ARC limits for the month. Learning to say “no” to great opportunities is hard but I’m starting to feel a lot lighter when it comes to “reading pressures” like deadlines etc. I’m really enjoying just going with the flow when it comes to my reading.

One thing that I know will change is my audiobook listening. I’ve moved closer to my job and have since reduced my commute time by 91%. I plan on listening to audiobooks on a regular basis, but I won’t be able to power through as many as I have in the past. What I’m hoping will happen is that I will see in increase in the other reading formats because I have more time now to read eBooks and physical novels.


 

When I did this breakdown last year, I was shocked to learn that less than half of the books I read came from the library. I had always had the firm belief that 80+% of my books came from there so it was a total surprise. I also learned that I read more standalone titles in a year than I thought I did; though series still made up the vast majority (obviously).

Source:2018
# (%)
2017
# (%)
2016
# (%)
Grand Total:229 (100%) 240 (100%)233 (100%)
Purchased46 (20%)52 (21%)79 (34%)
Library97 (43%)114 (47%)85 (36%)
ARCs86 (37%)80 (32%)69 (30%)

Again, I’m not shocked by these results. I would have liked to have seen my Purchased percentage to be higher but I knew coming into 2019 that I needed to improve that value.

Another thing I looked at in last year’s post was the number of series, sequels and standalones I read in 2017.

Type: 20182017
Grand Total224 [100%]221 [100%]
Standalone35 [16%]74 [33%]
Series187 [84%]147 [66%]
Book 1(71) [32%](53) [36%]
Book 2(59) [26%](44) [30%]
Book 3+(46) [20%](37) [25%]
Novellas:(13) [6%](11) [5%]

Overall, I was pretty consistent with what I read. I did decrease the number of standalones I read last year and that was something I was actively conscious of doing. Once I had enough Single Sunday Posts for the year, I made sure to rarely read standalones and instead focus on series. While I completed a lot of series, I wasn’t the best at reading sequels.

Moving Forward:

My main goals for 2019 are to increase the number of owned books I read in a year and to reduce the number of book series I have on the go. My reading challenges focus on reading owned titles unlike previous years where they were the minority of the challenges. To reduce sequels, I’ve dedicated 4 months of the year to read only sequels. Of course, I will read sequels in all months, but I find that having it a set focus really helps motivate me to grab that sequel I’ve been putting off for months.

What book formats do you read in a month? Where do they come from?

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Monthly Inventory: April 2019

April 2019

I definitely thought April might go a different way for me in terms of reading (ie I would be reading more) but it was pretty par for the course. I was hoping to have more free time during my vacation but I ended up playing navigator so I couldn’t spend my time in the car reading or listening to my audiobooks like I had hoped.

I also set a goal for myself to not sign up for more ARCs and I was somewhat successful. I caved when a review opportunity showed up for one of my favourite authors. Otherwise, I’m really happy with where I am when it comes to my ARCs.

Happy 6 Years to Me!

I totally didn’t realize that this anniversary was coming up but it’s been 6 years since I started my blog!

This year, I really hummed and hawed about keeping my blog as a self-hosted site and opted to keep it that way. While I don’t blog or read as much as I did 6 years ago, I’m still content with hobby. I’ve been contemplating my post scheduling system (since I’m posting more than I’m reading it seems) but I don’t have any current plans for a hiatus.

thoughts

Total for April 2019: 12 Books Read + 1 Novellas Read

DNF’d: 0 Books

Last April: 18 Books Read + 1 Novellas Read + 1 DNFs

Standout Read (★★★★)


I love dark romances and this series is quickly becoming my all time favourite. I just love everything about Kai and Enzo’s story. I’m two novels in and DESPERATE for the rest!

Biggest Let Down (★★★)


I definitely had different expectations for what I wanted this novel to be. I was very close to DNFing it because it was so slow at the start. Add to that an underdeveloped romance and I just didn’t overly enjoy my reading experience.

thoughts

You can always get the full details on all my challenges on my dedicated page but here is a quick update:

5 Year 5 Book Challenge: 2 books added | 6 of 25 Titles Read – Slighty Behind!
Goodreads Challenge: 13 books added | 51/200 Books – 14 Books Behind!
Tackling the TBR Challenge: 0 books added | 4/24 Books – Behind

View my Challenge Progress Here!

Created by Lia @ Lost in a Story

I used to do a big Goodreads Purge twice a year but I like the idea of doing a little bit at a time and had great success last year doing this on a monthly basis. The idea is to go through 5-10 books on your Goodreads TBR list chronologically and decide if they should stay or go. My 10 titles consist of 7 “new to me” titles and 3 “previously started series” titles.

This month:

Deadly: Part 1
Pass

The Year We Fell Down (The Ivy Years, #1)
Keep

Off the Record (Record, #1)
Keep

Miss Taken (Miss Taken Identity #1)
Keep

Rock the Heart (Black Falcon, #1)
Pass

Love Edy (Love Edy #1)
Keep

Forbidden Attraction (Forbidden Trilogy, #1)
Pass

Do You Want to Start a Scandal (Spindle Cove, #5; Castles Ever After, #4)
Keep

Wild Kisses (3:AM Kisses, #6)
Pass

Soleil (The Illumination Paradox, #3)
Keep

Pass: 4 | Keep: 6

Grand Total YTD: Pass: 12 | Keep: 28

Did I give up on any too soon? Let me know in the comments below!

Originally, May was supposed to be about book sequels but I have a few too many ARCs to read so I’m going to focus on those and save the sequels for June instead. I’m also hoping to play some catch-up with my reading challenges as well.

Just a short recap of my month this time around. How was your April?
Leave a comment below!

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Blog Tour: Cruel Fortune (Cruel #2) by K A Linde

Synopsis for Cruel Fortune (from Goodreads):
Lose yourself to the dark and glamorous underbelly of the Upper East Side in the second book in USA Today bestselling author K.A. Linde’s new billionaire romance Cruel Trilogy.

I finally have everything I ever wanted–fame and fortune and literary success.

Only one problem: I lost my muse.

He was tall, dark, and handsome. Broody, enigmatic, alluring, and right for me in every way.

Until he wasn’t. Until I lost everything.

And I can’t lose it all again. I’ll do anything to keep it.

Even seeing him again…

Other books in the series:
book3

breakdown

SERIESous’ Top Picks: Must Read Author
Series: Cruel

Crosses over with the Wright Series

Author: K A Linde
# of Books: 3 (Full Reading Order Here)

There is a FREE prequel novella: #0.5 One Cruel Night

Book Order: Chronological
Complete?: No, Cruel Legacy, is to be released in July 2019
Genre: Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Drama
Heat Rating: Hot
Point of View: First Person, Alternating
Publication Date: January 22, 2019 – ongoing
Source & Format: Wildfire Marketing Solutions–eARC

Add: Goodreads | Buy: Amazon

thoughts

Why I Picked it Up / My Expectations:

I finished Cruel Money with the inkling that not everything came to the light. Plus, there was that ending that had me eager to see what was next for Natalie’s journey.

The Plot:

For me, this book didn’t seem like your everyday “middle of the trilogy novel”. It takes a different approach that you don’t often see in a trilogy that follows the same leads and I found that to be very refreshing. It’s hard to fully explain without revealing the main plot…

I will say that the start was a little dry for me. We perhaps get caught up a little too much in the mundane of Natalie’s life. However, that underlying feeling that there was something else at play lurked just beneath the surface and kept me reading.

The Characters:

One of the highlights for me in the first novel was Natalie’s character evolution and how she really came into herself. But here, that Natalie gets challenged from all sides and I found it interesting to see how she would weather the Upper East Side storm.

The Romance:

Again, this was refreshing for a romance trilogy that focuses on the same leads.

My Expectations for the Rest of the Series:

I can’t wait to see how all the dust settles!

>> See my review of Book #1, Cruel Money, here!

My Rating: 3.5/5

[One Cruel Night 4/5] | Cruel Money 3.5/5 | Cruel Fortune 3.5/5 | Cruel Legacy TBP

overall

This is perfect for fans of Cruel Intentions and angsty romance reads!

Read if You Like: Cruel Intentions, the Upper East Side
Avoid if You: dislike angsty, billionaire romances

similarreads

  • Little Black Book by Tabatha Vargo (Little Black Book Series #1)
  • I Bet You by Isla Madden-Mills (The Hook-Up Series #2)
  • Fair Game by Monica Murphy (The Rules Series #1)


K A Linde

K.A. Linde is the USA Today bestselling author of the Avoiding Series, Wrights, and more than thirty other novels. She has a Masters degree in political science from the University of Georgia, was the head campaign worker for the 2012 presidential campaign at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and served as the head coach of the Duke University dance team. She loves reading fantasy novels, binge-watching Supernatural, traveling, and dancing in her spare time.

She currently lives in Lubbock, Texas, with her husband and two super-adorable puppies.

Author Links: Goodreads | Website | Twitter

Add: Goodreads | Buy: Amazon

Book Tour Organised by:

Wildfire Marketing Solutions

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SERIESous Discussion: My Reading Habits by Month [2]


SERIESous Discussions: Every once and awhile I will post my random ramblings about a bookish or blogging topic. Feel free to join in by making a comment below or linking back!


Last year, I was inspired to put this post together by the fabulous Cristina @ Girl in the Pages. She created this amazing post looking at her reading habits by month and I got curious about my own. So, I compared my 2016 and 2017 reading years to each other and I thought it would be fun to add my 2018 reading stats to the mix.

>> SERIESous Discussion: Where do my Books Come From?

What I Learned From Last Year’s Post — and What I Did About It:

I learned a few things from my post last year:

  • August is my most productive reading month
  • I averaged less books per month in 2017 than 2016
    • 2017: 20 books/month ; 2016: 22 books/month

In combination with my Discussion Post about Book Formats I Read in a Month, I started to do the following:

  • Started an Excel sheet to track what books I read in a month (in addition to Goodreads)
    • Break down: Books, ARCs, Audiobooks, DNFs & Novellas
  • Started editing “edition type” on Goodreads
    • Break down: Kindle, eBook, Hardcover, Audio, etc

 

My Thoughts Before Looking at the Numbers:

Last year was the first year in 8 years that I haven’t been in school for any of it. I’ve just been working at my job and trying to have a social life. So I’m really curious to see how my reading habits have changed…because I certainly think that they have!

>> SERIESous Discussion: How “Adulting” Changed my Reading Habits

While I only read 11 books less in 2018 than 2017, it felt like I read a whole lot less. I’ve said in many times in my recap posts for the last few months but there were times in 2018 I didn’t pick up a book at all. It’s all thanks to audiobooks that my numbers were as strong as they were — something I will investigate in my follow-up post to “Book Formats per Month”.

The Actual Results:

The Breakdown:

What does that all mean? I’ve summed it up here:

 201620172018
Total # Read260240229
Monthly Avg222019
Total # DNF'd71729
# of Kobo Reading Hours40040479

 

My Thoughts After Looking at the Numbers:

Nothing really shocked me here when I look at the breakdown; with the exception of my Kobo reading hours. But when I think about it, it makes sense. I read a lot of ARCs last year and I read those on my Kindle. I’ve also significantly reduced the number of books I get from my library (which are read on my Kobo) in an effort to read books I already own. And I also DNF’d a lot of titles from my Kobo last year.

Which brings me to the DNF numbers. Again, I’m not shocked by this increase. My reading preferences and tolerances as a reader have changed a lot over the last three years. What I liked (and bought) years ago isn’t necessarily what I enjoy now and I think my DNF numbers for 2018 reflect that.

Moving Forward:

Again, it will be interesting to see how the results for 2019 compare to 2018. I now have a more consistent schedule for work so I do have more free time. But with that comes more social calls and trips as well which doesn’t always equal more reading time. I recently moved closer to work so my commute (and audiobook time) has decreased significantly; however, in theory, I have more time to read physical books. We will see if that all pans out…

>> Be on the lookout for an updated post next month where I look at what formats of books I read in a month!

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Monthly Inventory: March 2019

March 2019

I’m only 3 months in, but I can tell 2019 is going to be a different sort of year for me.

Get ready for a long, reflective post 😛

Compared to previous years, I find I visit my blog only a handful of times during the week to write new posts and do upkeep. And that probably goes hand in hand with the fact that I seem to be reading less than ever before. I’ve read significantly less books in these first 3 months of the year when compared to last year (there’s like a 10 book difference!). This is the first time in years where I’ve been severely behind in my Goodreads challenge.

I do my best to remind myself that there are a lot of external factors that have impacted my reading in 2019. I recently moved and getting settled takes up every spare moment I have. Plus, my responsibilities have changed as a result of my move (and just the fact that I’m getting older). My work schedule is insane–which is why every spare moment has been going towards my house chores because if I’m not living at work, I’m trying to get my actual living space in order. And because I moved closer to work, I’m listening to less audiobooks in a month and I think that has drastically impacted my monthly reading stats.

>> SERIESous Discussion: Reading Formats by Month

I’m optimistic about the next few months though. I’ve almost finished everything I want to do to my new place, so I’m hoping to get more time to read as a result. My work schedule is also going to change in May and I have a nice vacation scheduled for April so I should see some improvements there.

But I think the biggest factor is that I’m getting more and more comfortable with this shift to my reading habits. I always knew that as I got older, the number of books I would read in a year would dwindle as my responsibilities and interests changed. And when it comes to what I read, I find myself craving flexibility. I want to just pick up a book on a whim because it sounds good not because I need to read it by a certain date.

Now don’t get me wrong, I love doing ARCs and review requests–and I will continue to do them. But I think in the months to come, I’m really going to start to limit the number I do in a month so I can have the option to read that eBook that has been sitting on my eReader for 2 years untouched; or pull that sequel from the library shelves I’ve been avoiding for months. So what’s in store? I’ve outlined what I’m going to do going forward in my “State of the ARC” and “On Order” sections of this post.

 

thoughts

Total for March 2019: 10 Books Read + 2 Novellas Read

DNF’d: 0 Books

Last March: 27 Books Read + 3 Novellas Read + 1 DNFs

Standout Read (★★★★)


I’m so happy to return to the world of Briar U!!! While this one took me a few chapters to get into, I had a hard time putting it down by the end. I just loved the slow burn!

Biggest Let Down (★★)


While I think we can all agree that Chaol needed a serious reboot as a character, I found that the vast majority of this novel was filler. You could have easily accomplished everything this 600 page novel did in 150 pages.

 


For Black Friday this year, Kindle had a promotion for new Kindle Unlimited Subscribers where you got 3 months of reading for only $0.99!!! Usually, we don’t get these deals in Canada so I made sure I locked in ASAP. I started my subscription at the start of December and it ended within the first week of March. I wanted to keep track of what books I read to see if what I read is worth the monthly fee just like I did when completing the free trial a few years ago.

  • Aced $3.91
  • Spiked $3.95
  • Pan $5.30
  • MVP $1.31

I made these books a priority and it paid off. I’m adding a total of $14.47 to my $25.78 total since December for a grand total of $40.25. Pretty good for a $1 purchase!

kobostats

Every quarter I take a look at my Kobo stats to see how I’m doing. My Kobo is my main reading device, used for personal and library books. My Kindle is used for ARCs but it lacks the statistic features of my Kobo.

As of:

March 31, 2019

March 31, 2018

Total % of Library Complete

%

23%

Total # of Books Finished

#

284

Total # of Reading Hours

#

2511

 

posted reviews

Most Viewed Post

TTT: Standalone Novels that Should Have Sequels

Most Viewed Review

ARC Review: Friends with Benefits

View this year’s archives for more posts and reviews!

 

thoughts

Previously posted series reviews that got updates:

 

thoughts

You can always get the full details on all my challenges on my dedicated page but here is a quick update:

5 Year 5 Book Challenge: 2 books added | 3 of 25 Titles Read – Behind!
Goodreads Challenge: 11 books added | 11/200 Books – 11 Books Behind!
Tackling the TBR Challenge: 0 books added | 4/24 Books – Slightly Behind

View my Challenge Progress Here!

 

Every quarter, I check the status of my Goodreads shelves to see if I’m reducing (or increasing) the number of items on my TBR. My goals for 2019 are to reduce my “New to Me” TBR to ~400 as well as my “Sequel” shelf to less than 250.

Currently

December 31, 2018

Want to Read (New)

465

472

To Read (Sequels)

261

263

 

Created by Lia @ Lost in a Story

I used to do a big Goodreads Purge twice a year but I like the idea of doing a little bit at a time and had great success last year doing this on a monthly basis. The idea is to go through 5-10 books on your Goodreads TBR list chronologically and decide if they should stay or go. My 10 titles consist of 7 “new to me” titles and 3 “previously started series” titles.

This month:

Beautiful Oblivion (Beautiful Oblivion, #1)
Pass

Losing Control (Kerr Chronicles, #1)
Keep

More Than Music (Chasing The Dream, #1)
Keep

Full Steam Ahead (Sea Swept, #1)
Keep

Solo
Pass

Crossing the Line (World Apart, 1)
Keep

The Hook Up (Game On, #1)
Keep

All Closed Off (Rusk University, #4)
Keep

Unhinge (Fairfax, #2)
Keep

Beautiful Boss (Beautiful Bastard, #4.5)
Keep

Pass: 2 | Keep: 8

Grand Total YTD: Pass: 8 | Keep: 22

Did I give up on any too soon? Let me know in the comments below!

While this is a monthly meme hosted by Avalinah’s Books, I only update every quarter.

My Progress for March 2019:

ARCs Read: 10 | ARCs Overdue: 1+1* | Upcoming: 3

(January State: ARCs Read: 5 | ARCs Overdue: 1+2* | Upcoming: 3)

*Titles given to me as a member of an author’s street team to read ASAP.

Going Forward:

While I already have a limit of no more than 2 ARCs per month (and I’ve been doing a pretty great job sticking to it!), I plan on accepting less ARCs on a monthly basis in the coming months. As per my 2019 Reading Plan, I allow myself to request 2 ARCs (blog tours, Netgalley, review opportunities, requests) every month. However, I didn’t book myself for any ARCs this past month in an effort to play catch-up…and I really loved it.

It’s a little hard to explain but I’ll try. See, it used to take me 2-3 days to read a book but now it’s taking me an average of 5 because I don’t always have the time to read everyday. I try not to read multiple books at a time because my reading time is already sparse (though I do often overlap) and so I don’t always get to my ARCs as soon as I should. And then I feel pressed to read them by the deadline and that dampens my enjoyment.

So what’s my new plan? I’m going to further limit my ARCs until I can get a better grasp on reading and life. How am I going to do it?

  • Only look at review opportunities every other month
    • delete emails from review opportunity groups without reading them
      • ex. In the month of April I won’t be signing up for any tours for future dates regardless of if those dates fall outside of the month of April
  • Only read books from Street Teams I’m truly interested in
  • Start reading ARCs ASAP once received!

 

What were your biggest reading or personal accomplishments of the past month? Have you broken any resolutions yet?
Leave a comment below!

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