Tag «monthly inventory»

Monthly Inventory: April 2018 + 5 Year Anniversary!

April 2018

When I first thought of starting a blog 5 years ago, I really didn’t think I would still be with it 5 years later. Hobbies for me usually come and go thanks to my attention span. But reading is something I’ve been passionate about since high school and it’s that passion that has driven my blogging over the years.

I’ve shared my story many times over the years but I feel like it’s ok to reminisce for your 5 years anniversary. I’ve come a long way from my early days of a free wordpress site. I’ve (somehow) kept this blog going through 2 post secondary degrees; the beginning of my career and as I navigate this tricky world of adulting. I’ve changed the format of my reviews, redid my site design and moved my blog to a self-hosted server as well.

I might not read as many books now as I did 5 years ago or work on my blog everyday like I used to, but I’ve come to accept that things change and sometimes you just have to go with the flow. And in honour of 5 years, I wanted to share 5 lessons I have learned about reading and blogging since I joined this community:

  1. Blog hop and comment on other’s blogs whenever you can
    • I really neglected to do this in my first year of blogging and it’s my biggest regret.
  2. You can’t read all the books and that’s ok
    • Grow your TBR but don’t be afraid to remove those that don’t interest you
  3. Followers and ARCs aren’t everything
    • Stats can be helpful but you need to be happy first and foremost
  4. It’s ok not to read or blog everyday
    • I’ve really come to grips with this over the last year
  5. Never be afraid to be honest about your thoughts/reviews
    • Don’t say what is expected but rather what you truly feel

Cheesy perhaps, but I think they are important things to keep in mind. Even a 5 year veteran like me can still get caught up in the envy and the like but you work on it a day at a time.

Thank you everyone!

Whether you are a new reader or a returning friend, thanks for 5 fantastic years! Who knows, maybe I’ll still be here in 5 more 😉

My Reading Month of April

I think I said it best when I tweeted out this:

April was a month I dedicated to getting things back on track. I was behind in ARCs and my reading challenges so my focus was really on reading those key books to contribute to my reading goals for 2018. For the most part, the first two weeks of April were extremely successful. The last two sucked thanks to life getting in the way but I was still in OK shape when all was said and done.

I think for me, May is about finding that healthy balance between reading, blogging and life and I can’t wait to see what it brings!

 

thoughts

Total for April 2018: 18 Books Read + 1 Novellas Read

DNF’d: 0 Books

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

Standout Read (★★★★★)

When It's Real
This book was everything I wanted it to be! I love the fake relationship trope and this one executes it perfectly! The audio version is also AMAZING! So amazing I’ve got it on my list to buy since I borrowed it from the library.

Biggest Let Down (★★)

Wrecked (Clayton Falls, #3)
I love a good “bad-boy-turned-good” romance but this one just fell flat. It felt rushed and not much was done with the characters either.

 

posted reviews

Most Viewed Post

Top Ten Tuesdays: Books I Loved But Will Never Reread

Most Viewed Review

Suitors and Sabotage

Blog Tour: Suitors and Sabotage

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: 3 titles added | 5 of 25 Titles Read — Behind
Goodreads Challenge: # books added | #/190 Books — Ahead
52 Sequel Challenge: 4 titles added | 11/52 Sequels — Behind
Tackling the TBR Challenge: 1 book added | /36 Books — On Track

View my Challenge Progress Here!

Created by Lia @ Lost in a Story

I’ve seen this meme floating around and thought it was a great idea to help me tackle my TBR list and reach that less than 500 goal. The idea is to go through 5-10 books on your Goodreads TBR list chronologically and decide if they should stay or go. I usually do a big Goodreads Purge twice a year but I like the idea of doing a little bit at a time and have decided to do this on a monthly basis.

This month:

Sometimes Never (Sometimes Never, #1)
Keep

Sins & Needles (The Artists Trilogy, #1)
Keep

Keep

Fear of Falling (Fearless, #1)
Keep

Lark (Lark, #1)
Pass

One Perfect Night (Seattle Sullivans #1; The Sullivans #9.5)
Pass

The Art of Racing in the Rain
Keep

Flock (Stork, #3)
Keep

Belladonna (Secrets of the Eternal Rose, #2)
Pass

Highlander Taken (Clan Mackenzie, #2)
Keep

Pass: 3 | Keep: 7

Did I make any mistakes in letting some go or by keeping them? Let me know in the comments below!

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. Here are some of the books I have ready to go for May:

One More Time Furyborn (Empirium, #1) Challenge Accepted (Cleat C... At Any Price (Gaming the System, #1) Him (Him #1) Iron Gold (Red Rising Saga, #4)

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

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Disclaimer | Request a Review | Contact

Monthly Inventory: March 2018

March 2018

I’ve known March was going to be a weird reading month since late January this year and it definitely lived up to that expectation.

As I mentioned in my February Recap post, my “big city” library card from my school days expired mid-February. I did my best to read as many books as I could and quite a few carried over into the first two weeks of March. I read a lot of books over those 5 or so weeks. Sometimes averaging 2 books a day–which is crazy even for me! But I managed to get most of them in (even squeezing in some books I already own so I could read the sequels from the library) so it was a great success.

Me for most of February and March

However, that means everything else went by the wayside a bit. My challenge targets for the month of March (and February too to be honest) got neglected and I spent the last two weeks of March (and will be using the first week of April as well) catching up on ARCs I had committed myself too. Luckily, January proved to be more productive than I anticipated so I’m not too far behind on everything and thanks to my speed reading, I’m wayyyy ahead on my Goodreads Challenge.

So April is all about getting back on track! I’ve got some great sequels up next (including one I had to stop in February just as it was getting good) and some hotly anticipated titles I’ve been waiting to dive into. With a slightly more regular work schedule, I’m hoping I get get myself back into my everyday reading routine and checking off those “to-read” titles.

A Notable Change to my Reviews:

On all my reviews, I like to include a “Heat” rating so people know what type of sexual content they can expect in a book.

My Old Scale Looked Like This: (chaste) cold, cool, warm, really warm, hot, smokin’/steamy (very sexy)

I wanted to clean it up a bit because I was struggling a lot with the “cold” & “cool” as well as the “really warm” label. To me, cold and cool are the same thing (chaste kisses if any at all) and if a book has zero romance I just delete the field. I also found that “really warm” didn’t really suit the books I was labelling as such because they are descriptive.

So, going forward, I’ve merged my “cold” and “cool” tags into one (I’d already done that to the “smokin'” and “steamy” tags). I’ve also eliminated my “really warm” tag and have replaced it with “toasty” as I feel it better represents those novels that have your standard 3 sex scenes and not much else. I’m hoping that these more defined parameters will help me label books appropriately.

My New Scale: (chaste) Cool, Warm, Toasty, Hot, Smokin’ (very sexy)

Please note though that some upcoming posts will still have the terms “cold” and “really warm” in the post breakdown itself. I have so many posts scheduled (I’ve got things scheduled into December already!) that I just don’t have the time to go through them all and update them individually. But all the tags on my site have been appropriately adjusted.

thoughts

Total for March 2018: 27 Books Read + 3 Novellas Read

DNF’d: 1 Books

Last March:  16 Books Read + 3 Novellas Read + 5 DNFs

Standout Read (★★★★★)


Winter Renshaw has become a must read author for me and her latest just reaffirms that statement. In fact, this was the only 5 star review I gave this month!

Biggest Let Down (★★)


I should have listened to my gut when I felt like I should DNF this book. It’s never a good thing when you guess the “big twist” by the end of chapter one.

 

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 29, 2018

March 31, 2017

Total % of Library Complete

23%

20%

Total # of Books Finished

284

542

Total # of Reading Hours

2511

2289

*Note: After an update midway through 2017, the statistics changed for my Kobo. It no longer counted library copies towards the Total # of Books Finished (though it still counts the hours). Hence, there is a decrease in my current numbers for that statistic!

 

posted reviews

Most Viewed Post

Trope Thursdays: My Family Member Hurt Yours

Most Viewed Review

Series Review: Sons of Broad

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 & 1 DNF’d | 2 of 25 Titles Read
Goodreads Challenge: 30 books added | 83/190 Books
52 Sequel Challenge: Blood of a Thousand Stars & 1 DNF| 13/52 Sequels
Tackling the TBR Challenge: 2 books added | 10/36 Books

View my Challenge Progress Here!

2018 Take Control
Take Control Wrap-Up – March 2018

I had so much fun with this month-long challenge! It worked out really well that I lot of the titles I binge-read at the start of March were titles that met the challenge guidelines as well as my self imposed ones. (We were to read books that were published before March 1, 2018 but I also gave myself the stipulation that they had to be books I had on my TBR before that date as well.)

My goal was to read 15 books that met these requirements and I ended up surpassing that!

>> See everything that I read here!

In February 2017, I created a challenge for myself to bring my Want to Read Goodreads Shelf to 500 books. By the end of December 2017, I had brought the shelf down from 1205 to 511 books! The ultimate goal for 2018 is to get that number lower than 500 and also bring down my “sequel” shelf as well. I’ve decided that every quarter I will check my stats to see how I’m doing when it comes to cleaning up my TBR

Currently

December 31, 2017

Want to Read (New)

502

511

To Read (Sequels)

316

301

It’s nice to know that my “new” TBR shelf hasn’t grown. I know I’ve added a few titles to that category since the start of the year so I’m pleased that I seem to be reading more items than I’m adding. As for the “sequel” shelf, again, I’m assuming that it is increasing due to the fact that I’m starting new series (and want to read their sequels). My hope for April is to get a few more sequels (especially finale ones) in to reduce that shelf.

 

Created by Lia @ Lost in a Story

I’ve seen this meme floating around and thought it was a great idea to help me tackle my TBR list and reach that less than 500 goal. The idea is to go through 5-10 books on your Goodreads TBR list chronologically and decide if they should stay or go. I usually do a big Goodreads Purge twice a year but I like the idea of doing a little bit at a time and have decided to do this on a monthly basis.

This month (7 New-to-Me Series + 3 Previously Started Series):

If I Lie
Keep

The Testing (The Testing, #1)
Keep

Wicked Games (Games, #1)
Keep

The Impact of You
Pass

Catching Liam (Good Girls Don't, #1)
Pass

Flat-Out Love (Flat-Out Love, #1)
Pass

Beauty from Pain (Beauty, #1)
Keep

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest (Millennium, #3)
Keep

The Savage Blue (The Vicious Deep #2)
Keep

Every Never After (Never, #2)
Keep

Pass: 7 | Keep: 3

Grand Total since January: Pass: 14 | Keep: 16

Did I make any mistakes? Let me know in the comments below!

 

I saw this meme the other day and thought it would a great way to keep track of my ARCs and keep me more accountable. While this is a monthly meme hosted by Avalinah’s Books, I will only be updating every quarter.

Every month I give myself the allowance of requesting 3 ARCs as per my 2018 Reading Plan. Now, that doesn’t always happen (as you’ll see below). I’m a member of a few street teams and there are always surprise releases or opportunities so I end up reading more ARCs than I plan. Honestly, I mostly use that 3 ARC limit for requests on my blog so I can pace myself and give authors/publishers an approximation.

My Progress for January to March, 2018:

ARCs Read: 31  |   ARCs Overdue: 4*  |  Upcoming: 12

*Some of these books are from my Street Teams and they are “read ASAP” but I consider them to be overdue.

Going Forward:

I’m imposing an ARC hiatus for April and May. No more impulse clicks for this girl! I’m really overwhelmed with all the review copies I’ve signed myself up for this month. And while I love helping with the promotion of books, I feel like I’m not doing a very good job of saying “no” or reading those challenge books I’ve prioritized.

So for the months of April and May I’m not going to sign up for any future review copies or blog tours or take requests. I’m going to make a few exceptions for the Street Teams I’m a part of and the Publishers I work closely with, but otherwise, I want to focus on books I already own and utilizing my library more to read already released novels.

How am I going to accomplish this? Basically I’m going to be deleting all the review opportunity newsletters I subscribe to as they come into my inbox. I also will not be browsing the Netgalley catalogue for the next two months. Out of sight and out of mind is my philosophy for accomplishing this.

 

discussions

You can still join in on these discussions:

 

Here are some of my favourite posts that I’ve come across the past month:

 

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. Here are some of the books I have ready to go for April:

Dark Triumph (His Fair Assassin, #2) Hot Mess (Love is Messy Duet, #1) When It's Real Suitors and Sabotage Cursed: The Hunter Inside (Cursed, #1) Gunslinger Girl

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

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Disclaimer | Request a Review | Contact

Monthly Inventory: February 2018

February 2018

Looking back at the month of February, I didn’t get everything done that I wanted to. I blame a few key factors.

First, the Winter Olympics were on! I’m OBSESSED with the Olympics, and in particular the Winter ones (the Canadian in me likes the ice sports what can I say!). For those who follow me on Twitter you probably got annoyed with all my retweets but Canada had a great games and I’m not sorry 😉

Secondly, I went away on an extended vacation and I wasn’t able to read as many books (or watch as much Olympic events) as I would have liked. I still managed to squeeze a few reads in while en route so I was in a good place once I returned. Which is important because:

Third, my “big city” library card from university expired mid month so I had a lot of books I wanted to get through. Thanks to eBooks and some strategic planning, I still have a mountain load of eBooks waiting to be read in the next two weeks. Which means, my 2018 Reading Challenges went by the wayside but I got through a lot of titles I had had sitting on my TBR for years so I consider that a win!

thoughts

Total for February 2018: 21 Books Read + 7 Novellas Read

Last February: 13 Books Read + 4 Novellas Read

DNF’d: 3 Books

Standout Read (★★★★★)

It’s no secret I’m a huge Monica Murphy fan. I haven’t had the greatest luck with her YA stuff lately but I always enjoy her New Adult titles and this one was no exception. No one else could write this story like she could and it lived up to my every expectation!

Biggest Let Down (DNF’d)


I was SO SO excited to read this one! It had Shakespeare; forbidden love and was set in Toronto! I really wanted to love this one but I couldn’t tolerate the petty heroine and the not-burning-at-all slow burn romance.

 

posted reviews

Most Viewed Post

Monthly Inventory: January 2018

Most Viewed Review

Blog Tour: Amber Elixir

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: NONE | 2 of 25 Titles Read
Goodreads Challenge: 29 books added | 55/190 Books
52 Sequel Challenge: 5 Titles Added | 11/52 Sequels
Tackling the TBR Challenge: 4 books added | 8/36 Books

View my Challenge Progress Here!

In February 2017, I created a challenge for myself to bring my “Want to Read” Goodreads Shelf to 500 books. By the end of December 2017, I had brought the shelf down from 1205 to 511 books! The ultimate goal for 2018 is to get that number lower than 500 and also bring down my “sequel” shelf as well.

 

Created by Lia @ Lost in a Story

I’ve seen this meme floating around and thought it was a great idea to help me tackle my TBR list and reach that less than 500 goal. The idea is to go through 5-10 books on your Goodreads TBR list chronologically and decide if they should stay or go. I usually do a big Goodreads Purge twice a year but I like the idea of doing a little bit at a time and have decided to do this on a monthly basis.

This month (7 New Series + 3 Previously Started Series):

Deeper We Fall (Fall and Rise, #1)
Keep

Music of the Heart (Runaway Train, #1)
Keep

Breathing Underwater (Breathing Underwater, #1)
Keep

Going Under
Keep

If He Had Been with Me
Pass

The Secret of Ella and Micha (The Secret, #1)
Keep

Shattered Promises (Shattered Promises, #1)
Keep

Endure (Need, #4)
Keep

Jessica Rules the Dark Side (Jessica, #2)
Keep

Dawn of the Dreadfuls (Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, #0.5)
Pass

Pass: 2 | Keep: 8

Did I make any mistakes? Let me know in the comments below!

Take Control 2018 Button

I’m taking part in the Take Control of You TBR Pile Challenge, hosted by Kimberly @ Caffeinated Reviewer for the month of March. The challenge is simple: read books that have been published before March 1, 2018! That won’t be hard for me since I have a list of backlisted titles I have out from the library and it lines up with my reading challenges for this year. There aren’t any new releases for March that I have on my immediate radar either and I only have 1 ARC that will be published this month.

For me, I’m only going to count titles that I’ve already added to Goodreads. These means sequel novels for newly started series (even if they were published before March 2018) will not be counted though the inaugural novel will be counted.

My Goal: 15 Titles

You can track all my progress on my 2018 Reading Challenge Page here!

discussions

You can still join in on these discussions:

 

Here are some of my favourite posts that I’ve come across the past month:

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. Here are some of the books I have ready to go for March:

Dark Triumph (His Fair Assassin, #2) Hot Mess (Love is Messy Duet, #1) The Scorpion Rules (Prisoners of Peace, #1) Deadly Secret (Sons of Broad #2) The Divinity Bureau Chase Me (Broke and Beautiful, #1)

 

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

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Disclaimer | Request a Review | Contact

Monthly Inventory: January 2018

January 2018

January was an interesting reading month for me. I created my 2018 Reading Plan so I had a few “to-dos” to accomplish this past month. Did I meet them? Yes for the most part! I did request more ARCs than I anticipated (and set for myself)…oops. I also had to squeeze in a few other books because my “big city” library card expires mid-February now that I no longer live there for school. I tried my best to take out the books I don’t have access to with my local library and read them.

Thanks to my excellent planning, I managed to read all the books on my set TBR list according to my Reading Challenges while simultaneously reading those “big city” books (ie I made sure the books for this month’s reading challenge were the titles from that library).

I’ve also changed this summary post as well! There are some thing I’m only going to do every quarter and I’ve introduced some new features like my participation in the Down the TBR Hole meme and introducing the titles I have set to read for the new month. Enjoy!

thoughts

Total for January 2018: 24 Books Read + 2 Novellas Read

Last January: 21 Books Read + 2 Novellas Read

DNF’d: 3 Books

Standout Read (★★★★★)

Sixth Street Bands #4

I’ve been reviewing Jayne’s work since her first novel in the Sixth Bands Series and it is CRAZY how much her writing has evolved since that first book! This story was absolutely awesome and I felt every emotion reading it. Love!

Biggest Let Down (DNF)

Frigid #2

JLA is in my Top 10 most read authors according to Goodreads but the last few of hers I’ve tried haven’t been overly successful. I didn’t love the first book in this series, Frigid, but I was really excited to read about the next set of leads in Scorched. Unfortunately, their immaturity really bothered me and I ended up DNFing the book.

 

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:

January 31, 2018

January 31, 2017

Total % of Library Complete

23%

20%

Total # of Books Finished

270

531

Total # of Reading Hours

2511

2150

*Note: After an update midway through 2017, the statistics changed for my Kobo. It no longer counted library copies towards the Total # of Books Finished (though it still counts the hours). Hence, there is a decrease in my current numbers for that statistic!

posted reviews

Most Viewed Post

My 2018 Reading Plan

Most Viewed Review

Blog Tour: Fake Wife

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: Royally Screwed & Loop | 2 of 25 Titles Read
Goodreads Challenge: 26 books added | 26/190 Books
52 Sequel Challenge: 6 titles added + 1 DNF | 6/52 Sequels
Tackling the TBR Challenge: 4 books added + 1 DNF| 4/36 Books

View my Challenge Progress Here!

 

In February 2017, I created a challenge for myself to bring my “Want to Read” Goodreads Shelf to 500 books. By the end of December 2017, I had brought the shelf down from 1205 to 511 books! The ultimate goal for 2018 is to get that number lower than 500 and also bring down my “sequel” shelf as well. I’ve decided that every quarter I will check my stats to see how I’m doing when it comes to cleaning up my TBR:

Currently

December 31, 2017

Want to Read (New)

510

511

To Read (Sequels)

312

301

Clearly, not a big improvement. I picked up a few freebie reads this past month, including some sequel novels. But, it’s only month one and I hope that my upcoming vacation in February will help decrease those numbers.

 

Created by Lia @ Lost in a Story

I’ve seen this meme floating around and thought it was a great idea to help me tackle my TBR list and reach that less than 500 goal. I usually do a big Goodreads Purge twice a year but I like the idea of doing a little bit at a time.

It works like this:

  • Go to your goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if youre feeling adventurous) books. Of course, if you do this weekly, you start where you left off the last time.
  • Read the synopses of the books
  • Decide: keep it or should it go?

 

I will be going through 10 books each month (7 “new” books/series and 3 previously started series) to see if I am going to keep them or move them to my “pass” shelf. I’m going by the date I added them to Goodreads, starting with what I added in 2012 and working my way towards 2018. Here are this month’s contenders and what I have decided to do:

The Kite Runner
Keep

The Diviners (The Diviners, #1)
Pass

The Seduction of Phaeton Black (Paranormal Investigator, #1)
Pass

Ironskin (Ironskin, #1)
Pass

The Demon King (Seven Realms, #1)
Keep

Tempting the Best Man (Gamble Brothers, #1)
Pass

Game for Marriage (Game for It, #1)
Keep

Dream Dark (Caster Chronicles, #2.5)
Keep

Angel Fever (Angel, #3)
Keep

Endlessly (Paranormalcy, #3)
Pass

Pass: 5  |  Keep: 5

Did I make any mistakes? Let me know in the comments below!

 

discussions

You can still join in on these discussions:

Here are some of my favourite posts that I’ve come across the past month:

Each month I have a list of 11 books I’ve selected to read for that particular month as per my 2018 Reading Plan. These books include review copies and reading challenge picks. Here are some of the books I have ready to go for February:

Free Me (The Found Duet, #1) Maid of Secrets (Maids of Honor, #1) Paper Hearts (Hearts, #2) The Savage Blue (The Vicious Deep #2) Darkest Night (Sons of Broad, #1) The Amber Elixir (A Two Realms Novella Book 1)

 

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

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Disclaimer | Request a Review | Contact

Monthly Inventory: December 2017

December 2017

Can you believe it’s the end of 2017 already?

I know I can’t! This was a year of big changes for me. I (finally) said goodbye to the student life and hello to my career in healthcare. Starting shift work has brought a lot of challenges my way but it has also been super rewarding.

One way it has been rewarding is in terms of my reading and blogging! I really didn’t think I’d get to read that much this year now that I wasn’t a student but I definitely proved myself wrong. While I might not always get the chance to read first thing in the morning (my favourite time to read), I still find plenty of time to sit down with a book or two and get some pages in. I even got into audiobooks which has helped immensely in terms of reading stats and keeping me entertained during my commute.

As for blogging, I was able to schedule posts well into April 2018 so that’s been a huge burden off my shoulders. There are some days I don’t get a chance to check in at my blog so it’s nice to not have that worry on a regular basis when work and life get in the way.

I don’t know what to expect for 2018. I have a few plans when it comes to reading (expect that post the first week of January) and I’m introducing at least one new monthly feature to my blog so I’m very excited.

Be sure to check back tomorrow for my annual recap of my favourite books from 2017!

thoughts

Total for December 2017 (as of Dec 31st): 21 Books Read + 3 Novellas Read

Last December: 22 Books Read + 0 Novellas Read

DNF’d: 1 Book

Standout Read (★★★★★)

Rebel Belle #1

I didn’t think I’d like this book as much as I did but I loved every minute of this! The premise was so much fun, I laughed a lot and I was just plain entertained! I highly recommend this as an audiobook!

Biggest Let Down (DNF’d)

The Unnaturalists #1

I’ve had my eye on reading this for nearly 5 years and it was a huge let down. I felt extremely lost in what was happening and the world and because of that, I just couldn’t get into it.

kobostats

I thought it would be fun to keep track of my reading progress on my Kobo every month (and compare it to last year’s numbers). While I do own a Kindle now, I mostly use my Kobo for everyday reading. As per my #ShelfLove Challenge, I really want to increase the Total % of Library Complete by the end of the year.

**NOTE: Due to a new update on my Kobo, it looks like my past library reads don’t count (hence the drop in nearly 300 books) as they don’t remain on my Kobo. Now only Kobo books I own are counted towards my Total % of Library Complete stats.**

As of:

December 29, 2017

December 31, 2016

Total % of Library Complete

22%

20%

Total # of Books Finished

264

523

Total # of Reading Hours

2511

2107

 

posted reviews

Most Viewed Post

Service Review: Kobo Super Points

 

Most Viewed Review

Blog Tour: Fragile Chaos

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 finalized summary (as of December 29th):

5 Year 5 Book Challenge: 2 titles this month |  10 of 25 Titles Read // 1 Year Complete!
Goodreads Challenge: Completed as of September 6  | 237/175 Books
#ShelfLove Challenge: 5 TBR Items added this month  | 51/50 Books
Judge By the Cover Challenge: None — what a fail of a challenge!
Classics Challenge: None |  3 books this year

View my Challenge Progress Here in detail!

Overall: This was perhaps the my worst year in terms of reading challenges. I usually blow them right out of the water and I didn’t really do that this year (with the exception of my Goodreads challenge). I really think the mood reader in me took over so I kinda just read what I wanted when I wanted–which truly was my goal for 2017. After years of reading according to deadlines it was nice to just pick up a book on a whim because the synopsis intrigued me (as opposed to adding it to my neverending TBR and getting to it years later). I’ve taken my experience this year to heart and have used it to craft my 2018 Reading Challenges which you can read more about below:

2018 Reading Challenges:

I’m keeping it simple this year and sticking with 3 (plus Goodreads of course) challenges for 2018. I like to do different reading challenges each year but this year, I couldn’t find any that met my specific goals for 2018. So I opted to create my own challenges based on my 2018 Reading Plan (look for that post in January!).

My Goodreads Goal this year is 190 Books.

5 Year 5 Book Challenge 2018 Edition!

I decided to bring this personal challenge back because it focuses on specific titles. I also like that it helps me get some of those backlisted titles off my TBR. This makes it easier to do a purge when I’ve read all the titles from that year that are still of interest to me. The goal is the same: read 25 selected books I’ve been “highly anticipating” from the last 5 years (5 for each year).

>> View the titles I’ve selected here!

52 Sequel Challenge 2018

After I couldn’t find a reading challenge to meet my sequel needs, I just created my own to hold me accountable. The idea of this one is to read at least one sequel novel from a previously started series a week for 2018. That means I hope to read a grand total of 52 sequels (minimum!) in 2018.

Tackling the TBR – The 2018 Challenge

I’d like to get a few titles I’ve had on my eReaders off my TBR list this year–as I do every year. For this challenge, any title I own prior to 2018 will count once I read it. The minimum goal is 24 titles in 2018. However, I’ve also combined this with my sequel challenge where 1 book each month is a sequel from my personal collection so in theory I should reach 36 books by the end of 2018.

 

In February, I brought back my Tackling the TBR feature and announced my plan to get my Goodreads TBR down to 500 books. And I’m happy to say that I got my results down to 511! It’s a little more than 500 but considering some of those are ARCs that will be finished in January, I call it a success!

So how’d I do it? If you followed my monthly inventories, you would have noticed my numbers had really fluctuated since February. Some months I was up; others had me down. In November I said I was going to do a purge and that was exactly what I did this month.

One day, I went through all my titles on Goodreads and brought my “Want to Read” (the shelf I use for inaugural books and standalones I would like to read) from 619 to 513. Here were some rules I used to remove books:

  • Date added — if it was in 2012 (and not a classic novel), I removed it
  • I marked it as “unsure expectations” and it had been there for 3+ years
  • I didn’t mark it with any anticipation tags — especially if it was a “freebie”
  • I didn’t have a source to read it and it had been there for 3+ years
  • I read the synopsis and wasn’t excited to read it

Without further ado, here are my current standings:

  • Current TBR Shelf: 511 books (YAY!)
  • TBR Shelf at end of November: 619 books
  • Initial Number in February: 1205 books
  • Total # of Books Removed: 694 (WOWZA!)

Note: When I say “remove”, I moved these books to my “Pass” shelf so I know if I had considered reading them at some point in case I ever revisit them.

For 2018, I’d love to get that number below 500 but who knows! My main goal for 2018 is reading sequels so my focus will be moved to my other “to read” shelf and bringing it closer to 200 titles (it currently sits at 300).

Here are some great posts that caught my eye around the blogosphere this month:

So what type of posts can you expect in 2018? Here’s a preview of what I have in store for the first quarter:

  • A new monthly feature looking at book tropes
  • New Tips posts for enjoying audiobooks and keeping track of sequels
  • New Discussion posts about reading slumps and hosting blog tours
  • The return of The Perfect Match!
  • A Trilogy Review Blitz!
  • Lots of great series reviews!

How would you sum up your 2017 reading/blogging year? Did you accomplish everything you wanted to?

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

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Monthly Inventory: November 2017

November 2017

As I created this post, I struggled with how to describe the month of November. It seems like just yesterday I was plotting out my NaNoWriMo story and writing the first chapter. Overall, I think the best way to describe it all is panicked.

Just before my big trip in September, I noticed that I had neglected my two challenges for the year quite a bit. October wasn’t much of a help because real life got in the way and November was the month of finishing up the various requests I had taken on. I have a new plan for each of those challenges so you can find that below.

I also went through my first major reading slump of the year in November but I quickly got out of that. Look for a post in the new year about my tried and true tactic.

One positive is that I created my reading plan for 2018 based on my experiences of the last 3 months so hopefully that works out!

thoughts

Total for November 2017: 15 Books Read + 3 Novellas Read

Last November: 23 Books Read + 2 Novellas Read

DNF’d: 1 Books

Standout Read (★★★★★)

Dance Off #1

This novel reminded me what I love in a great adult contemporary romance: sizzling sexual tension; strong leads and just the right amount of drama to keep you interested. I found a new must read author with Alexis Daria!

Biggest Let Down (DNF’d)

Reign of Shadows

I really wanted this to be the book that made me love Sophie Jordan’s works but alas, that was not the case. I DNF’d this one pretty quick and I think I’ve reached the conclusion that her books are definitely not for me.

kobostats

I thought it would be fun to keep track of my reading progress on my Kobo every month (and compare it to last year’s numbers). While I do own a Kindle now, I mostly use my Kobo for everyday reading. As per my #ShelfLove Challenge, I really want to increase the Total % of Library Complete by the end of the year.

**NOTE: I finally figured out why my Kobo stats went all wonky a few months ago. For some reason books I had reopened lost their “read” status so they went away from my stats. So after going through 30 pages of books and marking them all as read again, my stats somewhat returned! It looks like my past library reads don’t count (hence the drop from 516 to 262) but now I can keep track of the books I own at the very least!**

As of:

November 30, 2017

November 30, 2016

Total % of Library Complete

22%

19%

Total # of Books Finished

262

516**

Total # of Reading Hours

2479

2082

 

posted reviews

Most Viewed Post

 

TTT: Books I Want my Kids to Read

 

Most Viewed Review

 

DNF Series Review: Starbound

 

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: 9 of 25 Titles Read

New Target: Read the last 2 titles from 2012 and repeat challenge in 2018

Goodreads Challenge: Completed as of September 6
#ShelfLove Challenge: 1 TBR Item added this month

New Target: Technically, I’ve completed the challenge since I’m in my chosen range but I would like to hit 50 books by the end of 2017 and I’m currently just 5 books short

Judge By the Cover Challenge: None — what a fail of a challenge!
Classics Challenge: None

New Target: Let’s try again next year!

View my Challenge Progress Here!

In February, I brought back my Tackling the TBR feature and announced my plan to get my Goodreads TBR down to 500 books. Here are my current standings:

  • Current TBR Shelf: 619 books
  • TBR Shelf at end of October: 614 books
  • Initial Number in February: 1205 books
  • Total # of Books Removed: 0

New Target: I hope to do a purge in December of back-listed titles and get this number closer to 500.

NaNoWriMo Update

Despite starting with one story and quickly scraping it for another I was way more interest it, I had a pretty good month of writing. While I didn’t win this year, I definitely wrote more than I have in the previous years combined! So that’s a big win for me. I created a kick ass outline that I will be using moving forward. I’m hoping to make writing a weekly thing (daily just isn’t going to work with my current work schedule) but I feel really good about how I left things despite not reaching that target word count.

I have quite a few review copies to get through these first two weeks but the rest of the month is dedicated to getting those last few titles in for my challenges. I’m excited to do my Top Picks post for 2017 (it’s going to be so tough to decide and I have new category ideas!); tweak my reading plan for 2018 and create a new monthly feature I’m excited to share with you all.

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

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Monthly Inventory: October 2017

October 2017

I can’t believe October has come and gone!

This month just flew by! It definitely helped that I spent a majority of it on vacation. I managed to get more books in than I expected–and in particular sequels for novels I’ve been putting off for awhile–so I always consider that a positive! My blogging lacked a little but I’ve got more time on my hands this month so I’ll be making up for lost time.

NaNoWriMo is happening again and I’m going to try my best to participate again this year. I’m not sure what story (I have two from the last two years I’ve started but not completed) I will be writing but I’m hoping this event will help instill in my the everyday habit of writing a little bit. If you participate and want to be buddies, here’s my profile.

thoughts

Total for October 2017: 16 Books Read + 0 Novellas Read

Last October: 15 Books Read + 4 Novellas

October 2017’s DNFs: 1 Books

Standout Read (★★★★★)

NSFW

Ever since I finished Play last year, I’ve been waiting for Charlie’s story. AND BOY, IT DID NOT DISAPPOINT! I loved every minute of that book.

Biggest Let Down (DNF’d)

Fallen Isles Trilogy #1

I just found this book to be terribly slow. I was more than 60% in and not invested what-so-ever; which is not a good sign. So perhaps proceed with caution if you want to pick this up.


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: Currently Re-evaluating
Goodreads Challenge: Completed as of September 6
#ShelfLove Challenge: 1 TBR Items added
Judge By the Cover Challenge: None
Classics Challenge: None

View my Challenge Progress Here!

 

In February, I brought back my Tackling the TBR feature and announced my plan to get my Goodreads TBR down to 500 books. Here are my current standings:

  • Current TBR Shelf: 614 books
  • TBR Shelf at end of September: 612 books
  • Initial Number in February: 1205 books

I blame some really good eBook deals for the sudden spike in my TBR numbers…

November is for Reading Challenge Catch-Up!

Since August, I’ve really failed with my personal reading challenges. My Goodreads one is easy because it counts everything I read but my challenges that are a little more specific have gone by the wayside.

In theory, I have more than enough time to salvage my 5 Year 5 Book Challenge. I have 15 books to read if I don’t count the sequels to get through by December 31st. I also have to finish 5 books for my #Shelflove Challenge as well. Completely do-able.

However, I went a little review copy crazy for the first half of November and this morning I got a little request happy at my library and took out 3 books that do not work for my challenges. I’m hoping with the time I have off from work in the next week, I can power through some novels and get myself in shape! Even if I get 3 books finished this month from my challenge, I can dedicate December to only challenge reads!


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

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Monthly Inventory: September 2017

September 2017

This was a weird month.

In terms of reading: This wasn’t a very good month, but I always knew that would be the case. I spent half of the month on a much deserved vacation that had me reading only a couple pages every few days. I made up for some of that time on my many flights but it was nice just to see the world and not worry about getting books finished. However, I did pledge to only read sequels for the Month of September and in that respect, I did succeed. AND, I completed my Goodreads goal for the year which means the rest of the year is just a bonus for me.

In terms of blogging: While on vacation, my blog went down and I didn’t even know it! It seem to be a problem with my host who was moving servers so my site was down for a couple of days. I did have some scheduled posts though so be sure to check out my blog feed to see if you missed one!

thoughts

Total for September 2017: 10 Books Read + 0 Novellas Read

Last September: 23 Books Read + 3 Novellas

September 2017’s DNFs: 0 Books

Standout Read (★★★★★)

Black City Trilogy

I’m embarrassed that it took me this long to finish this series! What a phenomenal series (I gave every book a 5/5 which is quite the achievement!). This series always delivered and the finale was no different.

Biggest Let Down (★★ )

A Wicked Thing #2

I should have DNF’d this novel way before the 30% mark but my curiosity got the better of me. One of the slowest novels I have ever had to endure. I swear, 90% of this book was just rehashing things we had already discussed in the previous novel OR, even worse, in the previous chapter.

kobostats

I thought it would be fun to keep track of my reading progress on my Kobo every month. While I do own a Kindle now, I mostly use my Kobo for everyday reading. As per my #ShelfLove Challenge, I really want to increase the Total % of Library Complete by the end of the year.

As of:

October 9, 2017

August 31, 2017

Total % of Library Complete

10%

19%

Total # of Books Finished

120

124

Total # of Reading Hours

2445

2418

Don’t ask me how I lost 4 finished books in the last month. This new Kobo update is really killing my stats!


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: Took September off

October’s 5Y5B picks: The LoopMaid of Secrets

Goodreads Challenge: Completed as of September 6
#ShelfLove Challenge: 0 TBR Items added

Judge By the Cover Challenge: None
Classics Challenge: None

View my Challenge Progress Here!

 

In February, I brought back my Tackling the TBR feature and announced my plan to get my Goodreads TBR down to 500 books. Here are my current standings:

  • Current TBR Shelf: 612 books
  • TBR Shelf at end of August: 606 books
  • Initial Number in February: 1205 books

 

November is Catch-Up!

I’ve really let my personal challenges fall to they wayside. But with my hours at work being reduced and no other commitments, I’m really going to use November to catch-up on series and novels I’ve let fall through the cracks. I really want my 5 Year 5 Book Challenge to be complete (or mostly complete) by 2018 and I would love to see a change in the percentage of my Kobo library that is finished. And it would be a fantastic bonus if I could get my TBR on Goodreads to be much closer to the 500 mark that I so desire.


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

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Monthly Inventory: August 2017

August 2017

Where has the summer gone?

Normally at this time of year I’d be preparing to head back to school for the umpteenth time like many of you probably are. However, I’ve finally finished school (!) and am a productive member of society and it feels great.

Well, most of the time.

This August I really felt the struggle to keep up blogging and reading. There were days where I didn’t look at my blog and my reading was simply one chapter before I fell asleep. I felt like I was getting nothing done. Thankfully, I’ve got a great blogging schedule and had my posts for the summer scheduled wayyyy in advance so it looked like fresh content was always on the horizon.

So maybe I bit off more than I could chew for the month of August but I had a great time with the various readathons I participated in and blog hopping when I could.

September is going to be an interesting month. First, I’m taking 2 weeks of much deserved vacation at the end of the month (though I foresee very little reading time besides the flight). And second, I’ve decided to only read sequels for the month. More details on that below!

thoughts

Total for July 2017: 17 Books Read + 4 Novellas Read

Last August: 17 Books Read + 27 Novellas

August 2017’s DNFs: 2 Books

Standout Read (★★★★★)

Leave the Night On

When I learned that there would be a new books to the Cottonbloom Series, my summer was made! This series has everything I love in a solid adult romance and Trentham did not disappoint with this new sequel!

Biggest Let Down (★★ & DNF)

The Changeling

I think my 2 star rating is very generous considering I didn’t enjoy a single thing about this book. Have you ever read the synopsis and thought you were getting one story but when you started you get something else instead? The synopsis for this one was grossly misleading and the book itself was terribly dull. It’s a shame because the idea is really interesting–but who knew you could make it so boring?

kobostats

I thought it would be fun to keep track of my reading progress on my Kobo every month (and compare it to last year’s numbers). While I do own a Kindle now, I mostly use my Kobo for everyday reading. As per my #ShelfLove Challenge, I really want to increase the Total % of Library Complete by the end of the year.

Unfortunately, with Kobo’s latest update they’ve changed the way they calculate statistics and it has drastically altered mine. It seems like they only count Kobo books now for total # of books finished (they used to include the eBooks from the library that I would add). But for some reason, that has changed my total % complete as well. At least my total # of hours seems to have stayed.

As of:

August 31, 2017

August 31, 2016

Total % of Library Complete

10%

19%

Total # of Books Finished

124

500

Total # of Reading Hours

2418

2007

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: 8 of 25 Titles Read — DNF’d 1 title

September’s 5Y5B picks: The LoopMaid of Secrets

Goodreads Challenge: 21 books added
#ShelfLove Challenge: 5 TBR Items added

September’s #ShelfLove picks:  & Legacy

Judge By the Cover Challenge: None
Classics Challenge: None

View my Challenge Progress Here!

 

In February, I brought back my Tackling the TBR feature and announced my plan to get my Goodreads TBR down to 500 books. Here are my current standings:

  • Current TBR Shelf: 606 books
  • TBR Shelf at end of June: 611 books
  • Initial Number in February: 1205 books

 

discussions

You can still join in on these discussions:

thoughts

Make Me Read It: August 2017

I didn’t meet my goal this year of reading 4 books but I really enjoyed the ones I did get to! The ones that are sequels are on my list for my Sequel September plan.

Shadows in the Silence (Angelfire, #3) Phoenix (Black City, #2) Hitched: Volume One (Imperfect Love, #1)

ARC August

This was my first time participating in the classic summer event hosted by Read. Sleep. Repeat and I really enjoyed it! I powered through these at the start of the month and only have two left for September so I call that a success! Here’s what I read:

Leave The Night On (Cottonbloom, #4) Zero Repeat Forever (The Nahx Invasions #1) His Ex's Little Sister (Insta-Love on the Run Book 1) The Thirteenth Gate (Dominion Mysteries, #1)

Sequels for September!

When your blog is dedicated to book series, you keep an extra eye on what ones you have to finish and which ones need a little more attention. And lately, I’ve noticed I need to get some sequels under my belt! This summer, I’ve been really good at starting new series but not so great at finishing them. I’ve got quite a few series reviews in my draft folder just waiting to be finished and I have lots of Fresh Friday posts that need some updating.

So for the month of September, I’m only going to be reading sequel novels for series I have already started. Now, there are a few exceptions. I do have a standalone ARC I need to read this month and I will likely have to start a new series for audiobooks so I can entertain myself on the way to work. Otherwise, I’ll be taking a break from my 5 Year 5 Book Challenge so I can focus on getting those sequels read!


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

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Monthly Inventory: July 2017

July 2017

Honestly, this month was a blur!

I feel like I was just posting my Canada Day 150 post for my favourite Canadian Authors and here I am, listing everything I did since! And I did a lot! You can find out more below.

One of the major highlights was officially scheduling my first post for the new year! It’s a little scary that I’ve run out of dates to post in 2017 but that’s mostly due to the fact that I’ve read a lot of standalone novels this year. Once I finish When Dimple Met Rishi in a few days, I’m only going to be reading novels that are part of series.

Also below, you will find my intro post to my first ever ARC August participation. While I told myself not to request a lot of ARCs this summer, I had a lot of opportunities for sequels and fav authors so I couldn’t resist. Oops

thoughts

Total for July 2017: 20 Books Read + 4 Novellas Read

Last July: 17 Books Read

DNF’d: 3 Books

Standout Read (★★★★★)

Everything, Everything

I was so charmed by this book and this story. I devoured it in one sitting.

Biggest Let Down (★★)

Review: A Court of Wings and Ruin

If this wasn’t the last book in the story arc, I would have DNF’d it. I thought this was so, so boring. It just lacked the shine to it the previous installment had (admittedly, that one is hard to top since ACOMAF was epic) and seemed like lots of talking, not so much action.

kobostats

I thought it would be fun to keep track of my reading progress on my Kobo every month (and compare it to last year’s numbers). While I do own a Kindle now, I mostly use my Kobo for everyday reading. As per my #ShelfLove Challenge, I really want to increase the Total % of Library Complete by the end of the year.

Unfortunately, with Kobo’s latest update they’ve changed the way they calculate statistics and it has drastically altered mine. It seems like they only count Kobo books now for total # of books finished (they used to include the eBooks from the library that I would add). But for some reason, that has changed my total % complete as well. At least my total # of hours seems to have stayed.

As of:

July 31, 2017

July 31, 2016

Total % of Library Complete

10%

18%

Total # of Books Finished

123

481

Total # of Reading Hours

2371

1951

 

posted reviews

Most Viewed Post

-are getting married! (3)

Read-a-Thon: Make Me Read It Vote

Most Viewed Review

Single Sundays: Zenn Diagram

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: 8 of 25 Titles Read — DNF’d 1 title

August’s 5Y5B picks: The LoopMaid of Secrets

Goodreads Challenge: 24 books added
#ShelfLove Challenge: 6 TBR Items added

August’s #ShelfLove picks: Just Breathe & Legacy

Judge By the Cover Challenge: None
Classics Challenge: None

August’s pick: finish Jane Eyre

View my Challenge Progress Here!

 

In February, I brought back my Tackling the TBR feature and announced my plan to get my Goodreads TBR down to 500 books. Here are my current standings:

  • Current TBR Shelf: 611 books
  • TBR Shelf at end of June: 614 books
  • Initial Number in February: 1205 books

 

discussions

You can still join in on these discussions:

Here are some of my favourite posts that I’ve come across the past month (I found a LOT!):

thoughts

Make Me Read It: August 2017

There’s still time to vote for what books I should read for the upcoming readathon! My goal is to read 4 of the 10 books I’ve picked during the readathon (and the rest by the end of the year).

This Is So Not Happening (He's So/She's So, #3) The Savage Blue (The Vicious Deep #2) Shadows in the Silence (Angelfire, #3) Phoenix (Black City, #2) Across a Star-Swept Sea (For Darkness Shows the Stars, #2) Trust in Me (Wait for You, #1.5) Hitched: Volume One (Imperfect Love, #1) Derailed (Clayton Falls, #1) The Bet (The Bet, #1) Caught Up in Us (Caught Up in Love, #1)

Vote here!

ARC August

This will be my first time participating in the classic summer event hosted by Read. Sleep. Repeat! I signed up for more ARCs than I should have but that’s what the summer is for right? I don’t have too many but I’d like to get the books slated for September release finished before September.

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

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