December 3, 2016

Full House Reading Challenge 2017 Sign Up

Reading Challenge Graphic 2017

Challenge Guidelines:

  • Challenge will run from Jan 1st to December 31st 2017
  • Write and publish a post stating your intention to participate. In the post please include the Challenge graphic and a link back to this post. Then link your intention post at the bottom of this post.  Make sure it is the actual post and not just a generic link to your blog.
  • Add your reviews back here on the link in this post. At the end of every three months there will be a U.S. $12 prize with a book of your choice from the Book Depository or U.S. Amazon voucher, for the entries. There will be a new linky then for the next quarter and so on to the end of December.
  • Reviews are not mandatory and if you prefer to keep a list of the books read and the category they cross off the card, then you can still enter for the completion of a Full House by linking to that list on the final linky or in a comment. The list could be kept on somewhere like Goodreads or in a Google doc.

Link Ups
Jan - March will open on first week of January    
  • Each review can only be linked up once in the year. However it doesn't matter when you read the book in 2017 - which month, just link as you remember or have time. So if you read it in January you may not get around to linking it until say... May. That is fine.
  • Books may cross over from other challenges that you are doing. However a different book for each square, one book cannot cover two squares.
  • There will be a final post to link in a summary post for the challenge for those who have completed a full house. This will close on the 2nd January 2018  and a winner will be chosen using random.org for a U.S. $30 prize which again can be used to buy books at the Book Depository or be received as an Amazon voucher.
Completion Link will go here.
  • Complete the card below.  You can do it in any order you wish.  You are allowed "one free exchange", if there is something on the square you really dislike you may change it to something of your choice. Once you have played this free choice that is it. Mention the exchange in the final summary post.
    Full House Reading Challenge 2017
* Book about books.  This can be fiction or non-fiction. It can be anything for example where the setting is a book shop for example. 

* Not really for you.  This can be a kind of book you don't usually read, or it could be one you just DNF, or one you just didn't enjoy that much.
* Diversity.  Think ethnic, cultural, religious, and gender diversity and you may come up with something you think of as well, as the list is basic.  But it must be somehow quite different to you. 

* Book from a list.   There are heaps of lists out there, from bestsellers to numerous Goodreads ones.

*Authors  UK/European author reads   UK or European author. 

*Size Word in Title   e.g small, little, tiny, huge, large, big, mini....etc. 

If you have a question about any category just leave a comment and I will get back to you.

For some reason I am having an issue with the link up, so will renew it before it expires, have put a ticket into the site for help and they are working on the problem.



November 30, 2016

Month in Review November 2016

November

Welcome in, do join me by sharing your link to your look back at this month. I'm looking forward to visiting and seeing what everyone has been up to.  The link will be open for you to share your post whenever you post over the next few days.  Do visit each others' posts.

Total books read this month: 16
Book Formats:

PaperbackSix
E-BookSix
AudiobookFour
From TBR shelfFour
Review BooksSix
From my New Shelf   One


Genres Read

Contemporary RomanceFive
Crime/SuspenseTwo
FantasyZero
Women's FictionTwo
Historical FictionFive
MemoirZero
FictionTwo


Books Read.  Authors. Star Ratings. Genres.


Jane Steele;Lyndsay Faye  4 stars Historical
Every Dark Corner;Karen Rose5 starsSuspense
The Italian Wedding;Nicky Pellegrino 4 starsWomen's Fiction
Blackpeak VinesHolly Ford3 starsRomance
Miracle on 5th AvenueSarah Morgan4 starsRomance
Calculated in Death.     J. D. Robb4 starsSuspense
RevenantsScott Kauffman3.5 starsHistorical
The Summer BrideAnne Gracie4 starsHistorical Romance
Three WishesLiane Moriarty4 starsFiction
The Bishop's GirlRebecca Burns4 starsHistorical
All I Ever WantedLucy Dillon4 starsFiction
Second Chance GrillChristine Nolfi4 starsRomance
TamarDeborah Challinor3 starsHistorical
Don't Want to Miss a ThingJill Mansell4 starsRomance
The Garden of Happy EndingsBarbara O'Neal5 starsWomen's Fiction
Little Shop of Happily Ever AfterJenny Colgan4 starsRomance


New to me authors.
Lyndsay Faye
Karen Rose
Holly Ford
Lucy Dillon
Christine Nolfi
Deborah Challinor
Scott Kauffman

Top Books for November

💝  Loved this one, I had never read Karen Rose, and now I have a new to me author whose books I will be reading in the future.

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💝 I enjoy Barbara O'Neal's books and this one was no exception. Tanya Eby narrated very well and the story was thought provoking and I loved the characters.



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In December Looking Forward to Reading...

Both published early January
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Incoming Books.
Paperback Books Purchased:

None!


E Books Purchased:
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Library Books: 
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Books coming from NetGalley or Edelweiss
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Books from Hachette NZ
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Reading Challenges Update.

I am on track I think to complete most/all my reading challenges for 2016. I thought I wouldn't achieve the audiobook one but I think now I will. I am deciding what I will do for 2017, not many. I plan to read less and more slowly in 2017!
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So how did your reading month pan out?

November 29, 2016

Miracle on 5th Avenue. Sarah Morgan

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Published:HQN
Date: November 29th 2016
Format: e-ARC
Pages: 384
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Source:Publisher via NetGalley
Rating:
4 stars                  Add to Goodreads
Hopeless romantic Eva Jordan loves everything about Christmas. She might be spending the holidays alone this year, but when she's given an opportunity to house-sit a spectacular penthouse on Fifth Avenue, she leaps at the chance. What better place to celebrate than in snow-kissed Manhattan? What she didn't expect was to find the penthouse still occupied by its gorgeous—and mysterious—owner.

Bestselling crime writer Lucas Blade is having the nightmare before Christmas. With a deadline and the anniversary of his wife's death looming, he's isolated himself in his penthouse with only his grief for company. He wants no interruptions, no decorations and he certainly doesn't appreciate being distracted by his beautiful, bubbly new housekeeper. But when the blizzard of the century leaves Eva snowbound in his apartment, Lucas starts to open up to the magic she brings…This Christmas, is Lucas finally ready to trust that happily-ever-afters do exist?
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With Miracle on 5th Avenue - we have #3 in the From Manhattan with Love series. It's a story I have been anticipating with relish for awhile now, and so it was a pleasure to read about Eva and Lucas Blade. We'd met Eva before and knew her pretty well but Lucas was a treat in store for us. 

They're both suffering loss, yet Eva has no one - no family at all, although what she hasn't taken time to realise is that family doesn't always have to be blood based. Her many close and not so close friends both adore and love her.

Lucas is trying to escape his interfering family (as he sees it). So while he is pretending to be in Vermont he is actually at home.  He is a writer with writer's block, the book is due and there is not a word on the page, until enter Eva - sent by his Grandmother to decorate and cook so the place is all welcoming when he returns for Vermont. 

So this book is a slightly different version of meeting and being snowed in, because of course Lucas was home when Eva turned up, but it was too icy and snowy to leave. 

Eva is a romantic, she believes in love and living happily, even ever after. Lucas has past experience that tells him differently. Eva doesn't like the dark thrillers that Lucas writes and would love to see a little love in there  to lighten things a little.   That horrifies Lucas! 

So there is a fun clash between the two, some tension and heat, and possibly coming up a love story and a happily ever after.

I enjoyed Eva and Lucas' story and it ends deliciously. Can't ask for more.



November 28, 2016

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? Nov 28th

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It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week.  It's a great post to organise yourself. It's an opportunity to visit and comment, and er... add to that ever growing TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started with J Kaye's Blog   and then was taken up by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn at the Book Date. And here we are!

Jen Vincent, Teach Mentor Texts, and Kellee of Unleashing Readers decided to give It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels, anything in the world of kidlit – join them!
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I had an enjoyable week, a mixture of meeting up with others, visitors and an extended family Christmas season gathering. Along with lots of quilting and audiobooks. Weather was scrappy and today it is blowing a gale and the plants are being knocked around! 

Hope all the USA readers had a great Thanksgiving.   

What I read last week:

Audiobooks
I finished this one and really liked it. Great story and nicely narrated.
I've been quilting which involves a lot of straight line sewing so I listened to the following one in a couple of days. Fun story also known in the USA as The Bookshop on the Corner.  Set in Scotland and another light entertaining story for book lovers.


And ta da! This one too. I did say quilting all these straight lines, which turns out is excellent for listening to audiobooks.
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A very entertaining listen. Another British book so well narrated by Clare Corbett.  A typical Jill Mansell book with a number of story lines but all connecting in a village. This one is about a young guy who suddenly finds he is about to take over the care of his eight month old nephew.

Books Read
Review book 
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From my own shelf.
Enjoyed this very much and I will certainly be reading more of Christine Nolfi.
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What I am reading at present:

From my TBR a book by a NZ author so that I can complete a little self-challenge! Historical fiction and so far  good.
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Listening to...
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Up next:

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Posts from the last week:

A Promise of Fire     Amanda Bouchet
Revenants: The Odyssey Home.   Scott Kaufman

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November 27, 2016

Revenants: The Odyssey Home.

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Published: Moonshine Cove
Date: December 2015
Format: e-ARC
Pages: 275
Genre: Historical Fiction
Source: Author via NetGalley
Rating:
3.5 stars                    Add to Goodreads
A grief-stricken candy-striper serving in a VA hospital following her brother’s death in Viet Nam struggles to return home an anonymous veteran of the Great War against the skullduggery of a congressman who not only controls the hospital as part of his small-town fiefdom but knows the name of her veteran. A name if revealed would end his political ambitions and his fifty-year marriage. In its retelling of Odysseus’ journey, Revenants casts a flickering candle upon the charon toll exacted not only from the families of those who fail to return home but of those who do.


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I read Revenatns:The Odyssey Home by Scott Kauffman during that time period celebrated as Armistice and Veteran's Day. Purely by accident, but a very fitting time to read it.

It is the story of Betsy  being sent to do candy stripe 'volunteer' work at a local VA hospital, where she meets up with all kinds of injured. Betsy has just lost her beloved brother Nathan to the Vietnam war, and is grieving his loss. Through observation and curiosity she finds in the attic a soldier kept hidden, badly injured and from a previous war.  The story follows Betsy's time at the VA hospital, her working along side her younger brother and Matt MacLain a young reporter to track down who the mystery man is.

And what a tangled web it is. There are quite a few twists and turns. There is one horrible Congressman who seems to be very crooked and self serving and who managed to evade service int he army. He is not above some horrible bullying. 

Part of the story focuses on Betsy and whether she will ever find healing from the grief of the loss of her brother, it is her journey and ultimately one of finding herself and choosing to live. Something those killed in war do not have the opportunity for.

The book brings home the rawness and horror of war and the terrible consequences for those who return terribly wounded.  The story links to The Odyssey, and for those who understand that then I am sure the book will have even more meaning for them.

While this story was not quite what I was expecting, and not the in the style I usually read, I did find myself engaged and wanting to read on.




November 23, 2016

A Promise of Fire. Amanda Bouchet

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Published:Sourcebooks Casablanca
Date: August 2nd 2016
Format: Paperback
Pages: 420
Genre: Fantasy
Source: Own book
Rating:
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Catalia "Cat" Fisa is a powerful clairvoyant known as the Kingmaker. This smart-mouthed soothsayer has no interest in her powers and would much rather fly under the radar, far from the clutches of her homicidal mother. But when an ambitious warlord captures her, she may not have a choice…

Griffin is intent on bringing peace to his newly conquered realm in the magic-deprived south. When he discovers Cat is the Kingmaker, he abducts her. But Cat will do everything in her power to avoid her dangerous destiny and battle her captor at every turn. Although up for the battle, Griffin would prefer for Cat to help his people willingly, and he's ready to do whatever it takes to coax her…even if that means falling in love with her.

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How do you find a new author to read? Well I read a few lines from Nalini Singh on Facebook I think saying how much she enjoyed A Promise of Fire. I sit up and take notice because I like Nalini Singh's writing so why wouldn't I like a reading recommendation from her.

I look the book up on Goodreads - five people I follow rate it a four or five. Another plus. So I order it and now I've read it and.... loved it. It says on the inside cover of the book ....

       If you like....
Cool world building * A Kick Ass heroine * Pulse pounding adventure * snappy banter * An uber-alpha male warlord hero...   

YOU'LL LOVE THE KINGMAKER CHRONICLES.

Like Bobbi Dumas at Kirkus Reviews I turned up my nose a bit as I started reading. In the first person and present tense. I hate that.... or do I. By the second page I couldn't have cared less, I was totally engrossed in this new world.

All of the above is true, and if you like that and enjoy a good fantasy novel this just could be one for you. Cat is a heroine that could be related to Percy Jackson. She seems to have the Greek gods on her side and has an awful lot of magic to boot. She is rather chary of family, her mother has to be hands down one of the worst. So when Cat first meets her circus family and then Griffin's family, please excuse her for being more than a little sceptical. 

Griffin's family is newly taken over a country, one of three, and they are proving to be a new kind of ruler. Ones who actually want to rule rather than grab all the power. But in no way are they weak.

If you listen to audiobook, Kimba over at the Caffeinated Book Reviewer recommends A Promise of Fire on audio.  Its not available to me where I live but if it were I'd listen to it soon!  Thank goodness I am lucky enough to have the second book for review. It comes out in January but I'll be reading it sooner rather than later!


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