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Monthly Inventory: June 2020

June 2020

Happy Canada Day Banner Design Layout With Paper Cut Colorful ...

I’m always a proud Canadian but these last few months have shown me how great this country truly is. The acts of kindness and compassion I’ve witnessed just warms my heart. And while we may not be celebrating the way we usually do, I know it will be a great day.

My reading for June was pretty great! Between my Scribd free trial and my second “sequel only” month of the year, having a purpose when it came to my reading seemed to motivate me to get some books in!

July is somewhat bittersweet for me. As I write this, I should be abroad right now on my summer vacation. Obviously, my plans for the summer have changed like many other people’s. I’m disappointed but trying to make the best of it. I have quite the backlog of reviews to write, some library books I took out in March that I haven’t gotten to and the last month of my Scribd trial so I am hoping to shift my focus!

thoughts

Total for June 2020: 16 Books Read + 3 Novellas Read

DNF’d: 0 Books

Last June: 13 Books Read + 4 Novellas Read + 2 DNFs

Standout Read (★★★★★)

Beautiful (Beautiful Bastard, #5)
Christina Lauren’s writing talents have come a long way from their Beautiful Bastard debut. I’m so glad that I saw the potential in this series and stuck with it! I loved this finale! It’s exactly what a romance series finale should be!

Biggest Let Down (★)

Best I've Ever Had (Sea Breeze Meets Rosemary Beach, #3)
I felt like that last two books in this series built up for our hero’s here so maybe I put too much pressure on it to be something else? I’m not sure. All I know is that this is the second 1-star review in a row for Abbi’s work and I’m not sure if I’ve outgrown her or her work has just shifted into something I’m not a fan of.


While I’ve been meaning to sign up for Scribd for a little while (it’s one of the last subscription services I haven’t tried), I finally got around to it this month!

Want to try Scribd for FREE for 60 days? Click Here! (*referral link)

Like I always do when I sign up for subscriptions, I wanted to see if I got my money’s worth and so I will be keeping track of all the books I read via the service.

  • Appealed by Emma Chase (audio)
  • Sidebarred by Emma Chase (audio)
  • The Wallflower Wager by Tessa Dare (audio)
  • Best I’ve Ever Had by Abbi Glines (eBook)
  • The Empress by S J Kincaid (audio)
  • Beautiful Boss by Christina Lauren (audio)
  • House of Kings by Keary Taylor (eBook)
  • Beautiful by Christina Lauren (audio)
  • Man Card by Sarina Bowen and Tanya Eby (eBook)
  • Boy Toy by Sarina Bowen and Tanya Eby (eBook)
  • Big Shot by Kim Karr (audio)

A monthly subscription to Scribd costs $8.99 USD. Basically, if you read one audiobook title a month, you’ve doubled the value of your payment. Even reading one bestseller eBook covers your payment. For example, The Wallflower wager costs $9.99 CAD for the eBook and $26.99 for the audio. So I definitely got my money’s worth this month! Some titles I could get from my library but I didn’t have to wait or they had my preferred format on Scribd.

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 books added | 15 of 31 Titles Read – On Track!
Goodreads Challenge: 19 books added | 107/155 Books – 31 books Ahead!
Tackling the TBR Challenge: 1 books added | 12/24 Books – On Track!

View my Challenge Progress Here!

Sequel Month #2!

Like I did last year, I’ve decided to dedicate 4 months of 2020 to sequels! That means–with the exception of audiobooks and ARCs–every title I must read in that month needs to be a sequel for a previously started series! Approximately 84% of the books I read this month were sequels! You can see the breakdown of what I read below:

  • # of Sequels Read: 16 + 0 DNF + 1 in Progress
    1. Rainbows Ever After by J J McAvoy (Rainbows #2)
    2. Appealed by Emma Chase (The Legal Briefs #3)
    3. Sidebarred by Emma Chase (The Legal Briefs #3.5)
    4. The Wallflower Wager by Tessa Dare (Girl Meets Duke #3)
    5. Best I’ve Ever Had by Abbi Glines (Sea Breeze Meets Rosemary Beach #3)
    6. The Empress by S J Kincaid (The Diabolic #2)
    7. Beautiful Boss by Christina Lauren (Beautiful Bastard #4.5)
    8. House of Kings by Keary Taylor (House of Royals #3)
    9. Beautiful by Christina Lauren (Beautiful Bastard #5)
    10. Girl of Nightmares by Kendare Blake (Anna #2)
    11. Reckless by Stella Rhys (Irresistible #6)
    12. Man Card by Sarina Bowen and Tanya Eby (Man Hands #2)
    13. My Calamity Jane by Hand, Meadows & Ashton (The Ladies Janies #3)
    14. Boy Toy by Sarina Bowen and Tanya Eby (Man Hands #3)
    15. Big Shot by Kim Karr (Sexy Jerk World #2)
    16. A Love Song for Dreamers by Piper Lawson — In Progress
  • # of Series Finished: 6
    1. Rainbows
    2. The Legal Briefs
    3. Beautiful Bastard
    4. Anna
    5. Irresistible
    6. The Ladies Janies

What a great reading month for sequels! All but three books I read this month were sequels which is pretty impressive! I got quite a few outstanding series finished up and added some long overdue sequels for others so I consider this one a success!

Cleaning Up My Goodreads Shelves:

My main mission for 2019 was bringing my “Want to Read” shelf (new to me books) on Goodreads to a number close to 400—and I was pretty darn close (422!)! I also set my “Sequel” shelf to be below 250 titles and I did do that (238)!

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 200 titles.

Currently

December 31, 2019

Want to Read (New)

391

422

To Read (Sequels)

215

238

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:

When You Were Mine
Pass

Dare to Love (Dare to Love, #1)
Keep

Levitate
Keep

The Hit List
Pass

The Ghost Bride
Pass

Jack Hammer (The Stripped Duet, #1)
Pass

Because You'll Never Meet Me (Because You'll Never Meet Me, #1)
Keep

The Skylighter (The Keepers' Chronicles, #2)
Keep

Maid of Deception (Maids of Honor, #2)
Keep

The Savage Dawn (The Girl at Midnight, #3)
Keep

Pass: 4 | Keep: 6

Grand Total YTD: Pass: 27 | Keep: 33

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, 2020:

ARCs Read: 18 | ARCs Overdue: 2* | Upcoming: 5

(March State: ARCs Read: 8 | ARCs Overdue: 2+1* | Upcoming: 1

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

Going Forward:

I’ve put a hold on taking requests for the rest of the summer to concentrate on titles I already have committed too and some upcoming releases for the street teams I’m a part of of.

The focus for July is to finish up some ARCs and enjoy the last month of my Scribd trial!

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

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SERIESous Discussion: How Many Series Did I *Really* Read in 2019?


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!


In the past, I’ve done some investigative discussion posts on Where my Books Come From and What My Monthly Reading Habits are year to year. And while I still plan on doing those specific posts later this year, I thought it would be fun to find out what I actually read last year when it comes to book series and standalones.

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

Thanks to the super handy formulas of an Excel spreadsheet–which is how I keep track of all the books I read in a year in addition to Goodreads–I was able to answer some burning questions I had about my reading habits when it comes to book series for the year 2019.

How Many Books Were Part of a Series?

Obviously, my blog is about Book Series and in order to generate content, I really have to keep my focus on reading books that are a part of a series. But I also love a good standalone novel from time to time. So, what’s the ratio of series novels read to standalones?

Novels/Novellas in a Series = 86% | Standalones = 14%

That’s right around what I expected. Usually, once I fill up all my Single Sunday posting slots for a year, I stop reading standalones and focus again on series novels.

Here is a specific breakdown of what parts of series I read last year:

Type: 201920182017
Grand Total172 [100%]224 [100%]221 [100%]
Standalone24 [14%]35 [16%]74 [33%]
Series148 [86%]187 [84%]147 [66%]
Book 145 [26%](71) [32%](53) [36%]
Book 241 [24%](59) [26%](44) [30%]
Book 3+45 [26%](46) [20%](37) [25%]
Novellas:17 [10%](13) [6%](11) [5%]

 

Do I Start More Book Series than I Finish?

Before I updated my Excel spreadsheet last year with a few other calculable parameters, I used to just keep track of how many book series I had on the go (and approximately how many books that was in total).

  • At the start start of 2019:
    • I had 124 series on the go, totalling 174 books.
  • At the end of 2019:
    • I had 120 series on the go, totalling 160 books.

In theory, it looks like I finished more series than I started new ones but is that really the case?

According to my data:

  • Brand New-To-Me Series:
    • Started 37 brand new to me series
    • Finished 13 of them
    • Opted not to finish 9 of them
  • Continuing Series:
    • Read 37 sequel novels
    • Finished 29 series
    • Opted not to finish 1

So really, the drop in my numbers came from the fact that there were brand new to me series that I opted not to continue with and not solely because I was more proactive about reading “newer” book sequels.

Slight Disclaimer:

Now, my system isn’t perfect. Some of the numbers might be slightly skewed because I only use one code for each book. For example, Dread Nation was a new to me series that I read completely but have opted not to read the sequel for. It got classified as a “DNF series” and doesn’t get counted in the “brand new series” category.

Also, I didn’t account for book series that are ongoing publications. If there is still a sequel to be published, I don’t count the series as “complete” even if I have read all available books.

Summary:

Much like when I started my blog nearly 7 years ago, the vast majority of what I read in a year is book series! I’m not particularly shocked by that fact; though I felt like I read a lot more standalones than 14% last year. So I am pretty happy with the number breakdown as it stands.

How many book series do you read in a year?

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SERIESous Discussion: My Reading Habits by Month [3]


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!


For the last 2 years I’ve been doing this comparison post to check in with my reading. I always to month-to-month comparison for my Monthly Inventories but it’s interesting to reflect back on the entire year as a whole.

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

I break things down like this:

  • What I learned from last year (2018) and any changes I made for 2019
  • My thoughts before I look at 2019’s numbers
  • The actual numbers & their breakdown
  • What I learned and moving forward

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

I learned a few things from my post last year:

  • February was my most productive reading month
  • I averaged 1 book less per month in 2018 than 2017
    • 2018: 19 books/month; 2017: 20 books/month 
  • My DNF #s have increased exponentially since 2016
  • I read less on my Kobo

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

  • Focused on reading more books I already own by
    • Reducing holds at the library for non-audiobooks
    • Creating specific reading challenges for owned books
    • Requesting less ARCs
  • Dedicated 4 months of the year to only read sequels

 

My Thoughts Before Looking at the Numbers:

Without a doubt, 2019 was a terrible reading year for me. I didn’t complete my Goodreads Challenge for the first time ever because life simply got in the way. Moving closer to work and reducing my commute time did nothing to improve my reading numbers like I thought.

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

I’d go days without picking up a book which would have shocked me 4 years ago. Gone were the days of getting up early just to fit a few chapters in. As a shift worker, I milk every minute of sleep I can get now. And if I’m lucky, I can fit in a chapter or two before sleep takes over for the night. So I know my numbers are not going to be stellar.

The Actual Results:

 

The Breakdown:

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

 2016201720182019
Total # Read260240229173
Monthly Avg22201915
Total # DNF'd717298
# of Kobo Reading Hours40040479144

My Thoughts After Looking at the Numbers:

Moving into a new home meant that most of my free time was spent getting the house (and yard) sorted. So I’m not shocked by these numbers. It was also my first year of being completely full time and one where I didn’t have the nicest rotation to follow. And I’d like to think my social life was more active than previously so that leads to less time reading.

Fun fact: I actually went 6 months into 2019 before I DNF’d my first book! I’ve been going through my TBR monthly and completing the Down The TBR Hole meme and removing books that I’m just not interested in throughout the whole year so maybe that has helped keep me satisfied with the books I do pick up.

The months I completed my Sequel Only months were February, June, September and November. And for the most part, I did see an increase in the number of titles I read for those months but it didn’t cause massive spikes.

Moving Forward:

I was much more realistic with my Goodreads Goal this year based on last year’s numbers. I’m realizing as I get older that there are other things that take precedence over reading. 

I’m really curious to see how my formats read are impacted though. I seem to be reading a lot of audiobooks (which was a foreign concept to me merely a few years ago) and if I wasn’t, my numbers would be near what they are in a year.

>> 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: May 2020

May 2020

This was a weird month for me. Things started on such a high following a great April (reading wise) and I was optimistic things were on the right track for the rest of the month.

I celebrated 7 years of blogging at the start of the month. It’s crazy that I’ve been doing this for 7 years! I’ve made lots of changes over the last 7 years like moving to a self-hosted site (and debating about staying that way), changing my posting schedule to post less and changing my review formats. Over the last two years I’ve struggled to find the time to blog but I learned I just had to find the right balance and change my expectations. I might not work on my blog everyday like I used to, but when I do, I’m reminded why I started this hobby in the first place. And especially with the state of the world right now (working in healthcare like I do is particularly challenging of late), finding joy in the little things has helped my mental health incredibly.

My reading itself was all over the place this month. While June was my planned “Sequel Month #2” for the year, approximately 50% of the books I read in May were sequels. Some were good and some were bad. I think this tweet sums things up nicely:


So by the end of the month, I tried my best to keep things light (ie mostly read contemporary romances) because that’s what my mood seemed to thrive on. And as June approached, I felt a little better about diving into those sequels and FINALLY starting my Scribd free trial.

thoughts

Total for May 2020: 24 Books Read + 0 Novellas Read

DNF’d: 1 Books

Last May: 13 Books Read + 1 Novellas Read + 0 DNFs

Standout Read (★★★★★)


I love Piper’s works and this series is shaping up to be one of her best yet. This book had everything I love in a good contemporary romance. Very excited for the finale!

Biggest Let Down (★★)


I think I just outgrew this series. It took me over 6 months (and numerous loans and renewals) to finally finish this book…and I was skimming it. The way this series progressed and evolved just wasn’t for me. And I could do without seeing the word “mate” for another 6 months.

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 | 13 of 31 Titles Read – On Track!
Goodreads Challenge: 24 books added | 88/155 Books – 24 Books Ahead!
Tackling the TBR Challenge: 2 books added | 11/24 Books – 1 Book Ahead!

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:

Take Me for Granted (Take Me, #1)
Keep

The Queen of All that Dies (The Fallen World, #1)
Keep

Dream a Little Dream (The Silver Trilogy, #1)
Pass

#Nerd (Hashtag, #1)
Keep

Vendetta (Blood for Blood, #1)
Pass

Luck on the Line (On the Verge #1)
Pass

An Uncertain Choice (An Uncertain Choice, #1)
Keep

Bloodwitch (The Witchlands, #3)
Keep

Dirty Charmer (Royally, #5)
Keep

Big Shot (Sexy Jerk World, #2)
Keep

Pass: 3 | Keep: 7

Grand Total YTD: Pass: 23 | Keep: 27

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

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

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Top Ten Tuesdays: Last 10 Books I DNF’d

memefulthoughts1
Top Ten Tuesdays: Is a weekly meme feature hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl where bloggers post their Top 10 List for an assigned topic! I will not be participating every week, but I will occasionally take a shot at it! 

This Week’s Topic:

Top Ten Books I Just Couldn’t Finish

I’ve been really good in the last year or so about not DNFing books. I don’t think there is anything wrong with DNFing books. I mean, I even wrote a post about HOW I do it here and part of my yearly wrap-up for the blog includes a DNF December Blitz of all the books and/or series I’ve opted not to finish for one reason or another. I just mean, that in the last year or so I’ve been very fortunate to pick up books that I’ve been able to finish.

So far this year I’ve DNF’d 4 books. Last year, I didn’t DNF a book until June. But here are the last 10 I’ve had to put down and why:

In Order of Most Recent:

1

I was listening to the audio version and I just found it couldn’t hold my attention with all the jumping around from past to present. Plus it is SO LONG!

DNF’d at 44%

2


I was really excited to read this diversely cast sequel but I failed to see the chemistry between these two at all.

DNF’d at 30%

3

This book hits the ground running and I had immediately fell behind. I felt like the synopsis served as the exposition and that I should already know who these people were and their relationships.

DNF’d at 21%

4


I really enjoyed the others in the series but this went from 0 to 100 in a second with no build up of chemistry or anything. Just didn’t work for me!

DNF’d at 25%

Read Series Review

5


Everything in this book seemed to move at a glacial pace. Whether it was the romance or the severe lack of drama, everything was taking its time to develop and I was bored.

DNF’d at 41%

Read My Review

6


After a promising first part, I was eager to see where this would go but it went nowhere anytime fast.

DNF’d at 40%

Read Series Review

7


I bought this before the whole Kindle Unlimited scam happened but this was so boring and bland.

DNF’d at 23%

8


Too much angst from our female lead and the lack of the male POV had me feeling nothing from these two.

DNF’d at 37%

Read My Review

9


This started off promising for me but I disliked how judgy our lead was towards other women. And I felt zero chemistry between the leads.

DNF’d at 22%

Read My Review

10


This book just needed something to take it to the next level. I wanted complex politics and drama but everything felt mundane.

DNF’d at 52%

Read My Review


Do you tough it out or do you DNF?

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Leave a Link to your TTT for me to visit in the comments below!

Monthly Inventory: April 2020

April 2020

Last month I was finding it harder than normal to concentrate on reading. I found myself picking up other hobbies like knitting or taking an online course to learn Python coding. And if it wasn’t an audiobook, I likely didn’t pick it up.

But April seemed to be a total 180! Work was even crazier than the month before (I work in the lab at a hospital) and I found myself reaching for the old familiar comfort of reading and finishing a book. It felt great to get lost in books again.

Once again, audiobooks ruled the month! Nearly 46% of the titles I read where audiobooks. I even managed to finish 2 shorter ones in one day! The secret? I would listen to them as I played Animal Crossing (the old school Wii version City Folk since I don’t have a Switch). They make great company when virtually fishing and catching bugs 😛

And I also set a mini challenge for myself to catch up on some ARCs that I had let slip to the wayside. I finished all of those up within the week which was great!

For May I’m hoping to tackle the titles I took out from the library before it shut down back in March. That includes finishing the final Throne of Glass novel (which I had been reading a bit at a time) and rewarding myself with 2 Cassandra Clare novels.

I hope everyone is staying safe and listening to their local health experts. There isn’t a minute of my day where I don’t think about the state of the world given my job. And when I think about what we are being asked to do (literally just staying home) and how doable that is when other generations before us were asked to leave their homes and travel to places unknown. I know it challenging (my dog and I definitely have cabin fever) but doing your small part as an individual helps the greater good in the long run. And thank you to everyone who is working on the frontlines–whether that’s in healthcare, food services, cleaning, delivery–keep up the great work!

thoughts

Total for April 2020: 23 Books Read + 3 Novellas Read

DNF’d: 1 Books

Last April: 12 Books Read + 1 Novellas Read + 0 DNFs

Standout Read (★★★★)


Piper Lawson is a favourite author of mine and I’ve been eagerly awaiting her brand new spin-off series! I loved all the tension and angst this brought and THAT ENDING!

Biggest Let Down (DNF’d)


I was really excited to start this book for a number of reasons. The diverse cast was the main one. But the “hate to love” you trope was more “hate” than “love” so I failed to see the chemistry between them and that bored me enough to put the book down.

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 books added | 10 of 31 Titles Read – 3 books behind!
Goodreads Challenge: 14 books added | 64/155 Books –  13 books ahead!
Tackling the TBR Challenge: 7 books added | 9/24 Books – 1 book ahead!

View my Challenge Progress Here!

This was a crazy month! I’m super ahead in my Goodreads Challenge (probably the most I’ve ever been ahead in my life) which is great because it gives me some buffer room for when normal life resumes. It was also a great month to catch up on reading books I already own. I was super behind on my Tackling the TBR Challenge so it was great to make up some ground.

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:

Spark (Spark, #1)
Pass

Vision of Love (Infinity, #1)
Pass
Ruby Ink (Clairmont #1)
Pass
Noah (5th Street, #1)
Keep
Thousand Words
Pass

Drifting into Darkness (Drifting, #1)
Pass

Velvet (Velvet, #1)
Keep

The Young Queens (Three Dark Crowns, #0.2)
Pass

The Sinners Touch (Manwhore, #2)
Keep
House of Kings (House of Royals, #3)Keep

Pass: 6 | Keep: 4

Grand Total YTD: Pass: 20 | Keep: 20

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

I’m going to keep the focus on books I already own for May–particularly cleaning up some series and crossover series I have on the go while everything is still fresh.

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

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Top Ten Tuesdays: Books I Read Because of Bloggers

memefulthoughts1
Top Ten Tuesdays: Is a weekly meme feature hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl where bloggers post their Top 10 List for an assigned topic! I will not be participating every week, but I will occasionally take a shot at it! You can always find these lists (past, present and original) on my Riffle Page!

This Week’s Topic:

Top Ten Books I Read Because of Book Bloggers

For the last few years, I’ve kept track of books I’ve decided to add to my TBR because I read some great reviews on book blogs. I used to just label the books with a particular tag on Goodreads but then I realized I couldn’t trace them back! So now I makes notes about the post and blogger so I know who to thank when I finally pick up the book.

I did do a similar TTT post in 2016 but that was books I had on my TBR from other blogs. This time, I’m focusing on books I have actually read and the blogs I found them on!

(In no particular order):


Links to My Reviews:

Do you keep track of where you find your books?

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Leave a Link to your TTT for me to visit in the comments below!

Monthly Inventory: February 2020

February 2020

It might be the shortest month of the year, but I sure packed a lot of reading in this past month! It helped that my work schedule (and some snowy days) allowed me to stay home and curl up on the couch with my many books.

This is the last full month I have for my Kindle Unlimited Subscription before I cancel it again so I tried my best to fit in all the books I need to read that are a part of the program. That meant I had a few binge reading sessions–which is something I haven’t been able to do in a long time!

thoughts

Total for February 2020: 15 Books Read + 1 Novellas Read + 2 DNF’d

Last February: 14 Books Read + 2 Novellas Read + 0 DNFs

Standout Read (★★★★★)


I actually had two 5 star reads this month but I opted for this series finale to be the standout read. While there was an aspect or two I wasn’t a fan of, I was totally absorbed into this audiobook. I’ve never been inclined to just sit and listen to an audiobook from start to finish, but I could have with this one!

Biggest Let Down (DNF)


I’ve really enjoyed this series so far and so when I got the ARC for the newest novel, I was so excited to jump in. But this was so boring and everything was so quick in terms of the romance that I just couldn’t get into it.


Once again for Black Friday, Kindle had a promotion for new Kindle Unlimited Subscribers where you got 3 months of reading for only $0.99!!! I was hoping this deal would return after I had such a blast taking advantage of it last year.

Like I always do when I resubscribe, I wanted to see if I got my money’s worth and so I will be keeping track of all the books I read via the service. (Just like I did when completing the free trial.)

  • Savage Royals by Callie Rose – $5.49
  • My Peace by Courtney Cole – $5.26
  • Defiant Princess by Callie Rose – $5.99
  • Dangerous Games by Dylan Heart – $3.94
  • Maelstrom by Catherine Jones Payne – $6.99
  • Relent by Rachel Schurig – $5.25
  • Daughter of the Rivers by Catherine Jones Payne – $2.99
  • Broken Empire by Callie Rose – $5.49

This was by far the best month I’ve had with KU this time around! I got so many books in and definitely would have made back my subscription fee. My subscription ends the first week of March so I’m going to hopefully fit in some more books! I was offered a deal for another 3 months for the price of 1 when I cancelled but I declined since I want to shift my focus back to titles I own.

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 | 5 of 31 Titles Read – On Track!
Goodreads Challenge: 16 books added | 25/155 Books – 1 book ahead!
Tackling the TBR Challenge: 1 books added | 1/24 Books – 3 books behind

View my Challenge Progress Here!

Sequel Month #1!

Like I did last year, I’ve decided to dedicate 4 months of 2020 to sequels! That means–with the exception of audiobooks and ARCs–every title I must read in that month needs to be a sequel for a previously started series! Approximately 69% of the books I read this month were sequels! You can see the breakdown of what I read below:

While it wasn’t my best showing in terms of the % read, I’m still really happy that I finished some long overdue series and made some headway on a few others. Prior commitments like ARCs, audiobooks and my Kindle Unlimited subscription really dampened the “sequels only” motto this time around but they also contributed as well.

Cleaning Up My Goodreads Shelves:

My main mission for 2019 was bringing my “Want to Read” shelf (new to me books) on Goodreads to a number close to 400—and I was pretty darn close (422!)! I also set my “Sequel” shelf to be below 250 titles and I did do that (238)!

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 200 titles.

Currently

December 31, 2019

Want to Read (New)

409

422

To Read (Sequels)

225

238

GAH!! Do you see how close that “Want to Read Shelf” is!

Created by Lia @ Lost in a Story

This has been such a success for the last two years that I just had to bring it back for another year! 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:

Pass

Keep

Keep

Keep

Keep

Pass

Pass

Keep

Keep

Pass

Pass: 4 | Keep: 6

Grand Total YTD: Pass: 8 | Keep: 12

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

Once I finish up my last few Kindle Unlimited loans, I’m shifting the focus back to books I already own to help get me back on track with my Tackling the TBR Challenge.

And I’m also going to look at trying out Scribd for a month to see how it compares to other subscription services. There are a few audiobooks I want to read that are available on the service so it’s something I’ve been wanting to sign up for for awhile. If you want to refer me to the service, shoot me a message below!

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

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Monthly Inventory: January 2020

January 2020

It’s the start of a new decade and new resolutions! I always start with the best intentions and things get put to the wayside. So I’m keeping it simple this year and keeping things both flexible and somewhat generalized.

January wasn’t totally the start I wanted for my reading. I got a little behind on ARCs and that put everything else behind. But I’m hoping February will right everything on course. As I write this in February, I’ve had a great few days and I’m optimistic going forward.

thoughts

Total for January 2020: 8 Books Read + 0 Novellas Read + 0 DNF’d

Last January: 10 Books Read + 1 Novellas Read + 0 DNFs

Standout Read (★★★★★)

Me
Watching Rocketman got me super pumped for this book! I’m a huge Elton John fan (I’m finally going to see him in March after years of trying to get tickets!) and I immediately got sucked into his story. This is by far one of the best autobiographies I’ve ever read!

Biggest Let Down (★★)

The Fates Divide (Carve the Mark, #2)
I had some high hopes given the ending of the first book after a slow start. But I struggled to get into this and zoned out for most of it. Just a whole lotta blah for me.


Once again for Black Friday, Kindle had a promotion for new Kindle Unlimited Subscribers where you got 3 months of reading for only $0.99!!! I was hoping this deal would return after I had such a blast taking advantage of it last year.

Like I always do when I resubscribe, I wanted to see if I got my money’s worth and so I will be keeping track of all the books I read via the service. (Just like I did when completing the free trial.)

  • Transfer by Aly Martinez – $6.99
  • I Hate You by Winter Renshaw – $6.64

Despite only getting two books in, I definitely got my money’s worth!

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, 2020

January 31, 2019

Total % of Library Complete

27%

25%

Total # of Books Finished

324

296

Total # of Reading Hours

2738

2598

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 books added | 3 of 31 Titles Read – On Track!
Goodreads Challenge: 8 books added | 8/155 Books – 4 books behind
Tackling the TBR Challenge: 0 books added | /24 Books – 2 books behind

View my Challenge Progress Here!

My main mission for 2019 was bringing my “Want to Read” shelf (new to me books) on Goodreads to a number close to 400—and I was pretty darn close (422!)! I also set my “Sequel” shelf to be below 250 titles and I did do that (238)!

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 200 titles.

Currently

December 31, 2019

Want to Read (New)

416

422

To Read (Sequels)

232

238

Created by Lia @ Lost in a Story

This has been such a success for the last two years that I just had to bring it back for another year! 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:

Beloved (Salvation, #1)
Pass

Undercover Love
Pass

The Fill-In Boyfriend
Keep

Love Garage (Love Brothers, #1)
Keep

This Much is True (Truth in Lies, #1)
Keep

Truth or Dare (Dare to Love, #1)
Pass

Robin in the Hood (Robbin' Hearts Series #1)
Pass

The Dark Calling (The Arcana Chronicles, #5)
Keep

Checkmate: This is Love (Travis & Viola, #2; Checkmate Duet, #2)
Keep

Restore Me (Shatter Me, #4)
Keep

Pass: 4 | Keep: 6

Grand Total YTD: Pass: 4 | Keep: 6

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 February 3, 2020:

ARCs Read: 2 | ARCs Overdue: 2+1* | Upcoming: 4

(September State: ARCs Read: 35 | ARCs Overdue: 3+1* | Upcoming: 1

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

Going Forward:

It’s a part of my Reading Plan for 2020 to only read 2 ARCs a month. So far, I have a few more than I should on the go but I’m blaming my Kindle Unlimited Subscription and my desire to get those titles in for being slightly distracted.

February is going to be a mix of sequels (the first “sequel only” month of 2020), Kindle Unlimited Reads and some ARCs (which two are sequels!). I have a tall order for the shortest month of the year (though we do get an extra day this year!) so here’s hoping!

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

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Release Blitz: Off Course by Jamie Deacon

Release Blitz: Off Course by Jamie Deacon

Just over a year ago, I read Jamie’s Defensive Play novella–which is a part of the Boys on the Brink Series–and was immediately charmed by it. It had a sweet, charming romance and had a heartfelt, genuine story to it.

Read my review of Defensive Play here!

Today, I’m here to share the exciting news that Jamie has added a new title to this fantastic series called Off Course for newsletter subscribers!


Title: Off Course

Author: Jamie Deacon
Find it: Here for FREE!

He should never have gone running that afternoon—not with the roads so treacherous,
and certainly not without checking his phone was charged. Then again, if there’s one thing seventeen-year-old Jason Connor is famous for, besides being the star of his cross country team, it’s his impulsiveness. So, when an injured ankle leaves him stranded in the woods with no means of calling for aid, it isn’t the first time a rash decision has led him into trouble.

As dusk approaches, Jason believes his situation can’t get any worse…until rescue arrives in the form of Tarek Bahrani—beautiful, infuriating, and the very last person Jason would choose to find him sprawled in the mud. The two have been enemies since clashing at the Brookshire County Championships, but while Taz is a constant reminder of Jason’s biggest mistake, he might just be the only one who can help him put things right.


Jamie Deacon

Born in 1982, Jamie Deacon lives close to the River Thames in Berkshire, England, and
is a full-time author of young adult fiction featuring characters across the gender and
sexuality spectrums. When not writing, Jamie loves to read, play board games, and solve
cryptic crosswords.

Jamie’s debut novel, Caught Inside, was published by Beaten Track in 2016 to much acclaim, including two Rainbow Awards. It was also nominated for a Lambda Literary (Lammy) Award, a Bisexual Book Award, and a Next Generation Indie Book Award.

Author Links: Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Don’t forget to subscribe so you can dive right in!

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