It's the start of 2016, which means it's time for New Year's resolutions. Maybe you want to shed some pounds, cut out soda, or join a gym. But have you made some READING resolutions? Have you made a few goals that will keep you reading great books throughout the year?
Take a peek at MY reading resolutions and then print out a reading log so you can keep track of your 2016 reads!
Read 75 books.
A numerical goal keeps you motivated even when you're going through a long reading slump. My goal of 75 keeps me on pace to read a little more than 6 books a month. I think that's do-able for me; being a working mama of two littles, I need to be realistic on what goals will fit with my schedule.
Listen to 15 audiobooks.
Goals are a fun time to try other book formats. I love audiobooks but don't always have the time to listen. My commute to work is fairly short and my boys aren't old enough to hear the older stories. Setting a goal of 15 puts me at a little more than one audiobook a month--I can do that!
Read 10 nonfiction books.
Is there a certain genre that you usually shy away from? For me that's nonfiction. But I know there is nonfiction out there that I will really enjoy, so I want to make sure I don't stray away too much. Ten books isn't too many but it's definitely nothing to frown at either. And I've actually already gotten started! I finished 7 by Jen Hatmaker on New Year's Day--one book down!
Finish 10 series that I've already started.
Ever start a book or series and just never get around to finishing it? As a librarian, I see a LOT of new books--shiny new books that grab my attention away from series that I've already started. And I recently did a count of series that I've started and not finished...and I counted 30! Thirty! I want to finish some of these series before I start even more. And right now I'm reading Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs, the 3rd and final book in the Miss Peregrine's series. I'm ready to roll on this goal!
Read 1 book each month that was published within the last 3 months.
Ever feel like you're the last person to read a book? I often feel that way since I'm always giving away my library collection to my excited students. So I'm making this goal to force myself to be a little selfish with my reading. It's okay to be a little selfish here and there, right?
Now it's your turn to make some reading resolutions! How many books do you want to read? What genres do you want to read (or avoid)? To help keep track of your 2016 reading, I've made a reading resolutions log for you! Simply click on the link and print out as many copies as you need to keep track of your reading.
Can you believe it's New Year's Day?! Wow, another year gone. I love new beginnings and fresh starts so New Year's is always so fun for me.
The word that I hope will describe my 2016 is all-in. I want to jump in with both feet to multiple parts of my life--parenting, marriage, faith, etc. I'm taking each month to focus on something that I really want to take to the all-in level. January's focus is nutrition. Wish me luck!
I'll be back on Monday with my new 2016 season of blogging! I took the last few weeks off to be with my family and just have a break from it all. It was refreshing but I am ready to be back!
My friend Emily at The Gnoming Librarian beat me to a review on Daughter of Deep Silence by Carrie Ryan, so go check her review out!
Emily and I listened to this book together on our way down to YallFest. We wanted to listen to books by YallFest authors, and I indeed got to meet Carrie Ryan!
However...I wasn't a fan of this book. Let's discuss.
A cruise ship called Persephone doesn't make it to its destination, and all but three passengers survive the devastation. Survivor Frances Mace knows that the ship was attacked by armed men, but the other two survivors--a wealthy politician and his son--lie to the media and say the ship was capsized by a rogue wave. Frances is now out for revenge and will stop at nothing to avenger her family and best friend's death.
What I Loved:
I loved the concept of the book--a girl seeking revenge without fully knowing the truth behind the cruise ship's destruction.
I love the TV show Revenge, so it's fun to see the tricks Frances has up her sleeve when trying to uncover the secrets.
What I Didn't Love:
The cover. Don't get me wrong--the cover is GORGEOUS--but it doesn't fit the book. It makes the book look historical and romantic...and it's not.
This book is really a copy of the TV show Revenge. Which is disappointing since I thought Ryan's book The Forest of Hands and Teeth was awfully similar to the movie The Village. So it just seemed like a copycat. There's even a character named Grayson, which is a major name on the TV show.
Frances fell HARD for Grayson when they were on the cruise ship for ONE WEEK. And he fell for her too. So a few years later they're still pining for each other? Really? And maybe it's because I listened to this book on audio, but she sure talked about her love for him A LOT.
There were so many plot holes here. It just wouldn't work. Frances takes her friend's identity--and successfully fools people--and the media doesn't go crazy when they discover her as a survivor. I just kept coming across things that wouldn't work in the real world. Which made the whole book fall apart.
So this one was a blah book for me. Only 2 stars for me.
What are some recommendations that you have for me?
Happy Monday! It's my last week of school before Christmas break and I am SO looking forward to a few weeks off to celebrate with friends/family.
Today I'm showing off an outfit that I designed for Echo from Pushing the Limits. This one was fun to design and I think I got pretty spot-on with it! And I would TOTALLY wear this outfit, so that's an added bonus.
Check it out:
Let's dig a little deeper:
First, I chose a tunic with long sleeves. Echo has scars on her arms so long sleeves is a must for her. This tunic is stylish and Echo's former popularity status would ensure she would have stylish shirts in her wardrobe. Plus green is the BEST color for redheads.
Skinny jeans. They're on trend and go perfectly with tunics.
Tan booties are a nice complementary color with the olive tunic.
Echo wouldn't want to wear bracelets around her wrists (thus drawing attention to her hands/arms), so a headband wrap is a nice accessory that again draws attention to her red hair.
Of course the leather jacket. Noah loans his leather jacket to Echo, and I like the look of this one. Kind of has that "tough guy" look to it.
So what do you think? I love this look--would YOU wear it?
A few weeks ago I interviewed authors Katie McGarry and Lex Thomas (two guys) for a library conference panel. And it was amazing! I loved every minute of it! They were all so gracious and just plain fun! You can watch about ten minutes of the panel here:
Today I'm reviewing Katie's book Pushing the Limits. My students have been obsessing about this book for the past few years and I loved it, too! I'm not always a big romance fan, but this one was just so great! Let's jump into the review:
First book in the Pushing the Limits series
Echo Emerson used to be super popular...but life has changed. Her brother died in the Iraq War, her parents divorced and her father married Echo's childhood babysitter, and Echo now has horrific scars on her arms and isn't allowed to see her mother. And she can't remember why.
Noah Hutchins lost his parents in a house fire and he and his brothers have been separated in foster care. He would do anything to get his brothers back, but he most deals with it by using girls, doing drugs, and giving adults an attitude.
These two, who have so much to deal with in their own lives, find themselves together in a tutoring session. And the more they learn about each other, the more they start to fall for each other.
What I Loved:
Sure, this is a romance book, and sure, these characters are going to fall in love. But there was so much depth to them! This book wasn't the "fluff" that so many romance books get labeled. I really appreciated that.
The romance was good, too. I mean, it is a romance book after all. :)
When you read a romance book, you know the main characters will end up together, but in this book you just don't know how it's going to work out. I liked that "suspense" part of the plot.
I love that Noah told part of the story and Echo told part of the story. You really get to know the characters intimately this way.
What I Didn't Love:
Noah's pet names for Echo were silly...and cheesy.
A really enjoyable read and it made meeting Katie even more special! Four heels for me!
Have you read Pushing the Limits or any of the others in the series? I'm anxious to read more!
Yesterday I reviewed Rebel Belle by Rachel Hawkins, a funny yet exciting fantasy book about pretty girl Harper Price getting unexpected (and unwanted) supernatural powers. The book opens on Homecoming night, when Harper is 99% sure she is going to be crowned queen. Before all hell breaks loose, of course.
So today's outfit inspiration comes from that Homecoming night. Harper says she is wearing a pink dress and pearls, so that is where I started with the look.
It's a lovely outfit, and those heels could definitely do some damage (and boy do they!).
The light pink dress is lovely. Feminine, elegant--just like Harper.
Harper's bare neckline is dressed up by this chunky pearl necklace. A trendy style for a classic jewelry piece. The earrings are small and therefore don't take away from the jewelry.
The silver shoes are SO beautiful! The heels are high but not overwhelming and the color is a lovely correlation to the pink dress.
The silver clutch is dainty and sweet. Just like a southern woman would be, right?
I think this outfit is so sweet--do you think Harper would wear it to Homecoming?