My life has been on fire. Quite literally. Two of my younger sisters lost their homes to house fires this past week (fires are common during a dry and windy winter in the midwest) in separate incidents and I’ve been extending as much help towards them as possible. They’re all safe, no casualties thankfully! I’m hoping they’re back on their feet soon. That said, my reading and TV watch list have been at an all time low. They’re usually down during the school semester anyway, but this is an all new low. So let’s talk books, shows, and my 2018 reading challenge!
Books I managed to get finished before school started back up a couple of weeks ago were:
The Gunslinger by Stephen King-good but not the best I’ve ever read and I’m still deciding if I like him as an author. I certainly enjoy many of the movies based off of his works. I’m also anxious to get my hands on a copy of his newest book, Sleeping Beauties.
Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman-also good, but I think my expectations were set too high by my love of him. This felt very reminiscent of Anansi Boys with a big of Stardust thrown in and the melancholy from Coraline. All books I enjoy, but I was hoping for something different for Neverwhere itself.
Spindle and the Sleeper by Neil Gaimain- I got this for my birthday and finished it in less than 15 minutes. It’s a super short story, I’m planning to read it to my kids actually, and it’s a dark and twisted retelling of Sleeping Beauty and Snow White. I really enjoyed it. It was very female driven with both a female protagonist and antagonist and no underlying male storyline to propel it. Not that it isn’t a good plot as well, but it is really nice to have a story that focuses on the females without a love interest being the driving plotline.
Everless by Sara Holland-I was very pleasantly surprised by this one! It’s a great start to a new series. The idea is a nice fresh one for literature, and the little bit of a love side story that there is take a nice twist from what you expect. It does share the same deja vu “Have I read this before” feel that most young adult novels all share where the pretty female protagonist loses her father and her mother is a mystery and her handsome buddy from childhood is all grown up and TWIST ENDING! I actually picked this up to read the day before my birthday and ended up finishing at 1:30 on my birthday morning. I was so exhausted.
Assassin Marked by Michael C Sahd- my lips are zipped! I am actually reviewing this one for you guys next week. To quote Olaf from “The Movie that never dies” (Frozen) “All good things, all good things!”
My currently reading list looks like this:
The Lost Gate by Orson Scott Card- I’m reading this with the hubsters so it’ll be a slow read again as we try to make sure neither of us gets too far ahead of each other (Him, really. He isn’t in school and he works a desk job with a down time and a nice leisurely one hour lunch while I have no down time and school and two kids under 5 that I stay home with and try to keep alive from day-to-day). So far it’s very intriguing and very different from Orson Scott Card books I’ve read in the past. Which is Ender’s Game and that’s it if we are being honest. I liked what we’ve read so far!
Scythe by Neil Shusterman- Another birthday book goodie! Neil Shusterman is a personal favorite of mine and I’m six or seven chapters in so far and not at all disappointed yet!
As for my kids’ reading lists…
Bean, my oldest for those new to my blog (he’s 4) is devouring any and all Neil Gaiman books he can find at the library so we have worked our way through Chu’s First Day at School, Chu’s day at the Beach, the dangerous Alphabet (this is nightly as we own it), Fortunately, the Milk (we also own), Blueberry Girl, The Day I Swapped my Dad For Two Goldfish, and Crazy Hair. We own Coraline and The Graveyard Book but I am holding off on those because he is also reading (being read) the illustrated version of the Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. This confuses him because I have previously read to him from the Philosopher’s Stone (my mum has slowly been buying him all the original British Versions) and the wording in the title and the books is just enough that it all seems new to him. He’s on a real Harry Potter kick as well. This kid. I adore him.
Squish (my youngest, she’s 1) is still in love with her “Peek Inside a Fairytale” board books, and she has Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast, and Sleeping Beauty. She also brings “Guess How Much I love you” both in the English version and the Gaelic version we picked up in Ireland in 2016. Guess which one I can read from, ha.
This is Us– I love this show so much! It follows the lives of triplets and their parents in back and forth scenes from the present to the past. It’s gut wrenching.
The Path– a look inside a cult and how all the members interact and their personal lives. Pretty good so far.
The Runaways– Anyone who’s been reading my blog had to see this coming. For those that are new to me, Marvel’s The Runaways is my favorite comic book storyline and Gert Yorkes is my jam. Gert and Old Lace for the win! Anyway, this doesn’t follow the comic too closely and creates a lot more insight to the parents’ sides of things, but I highly enjoy it and can’t wait for season 2!
Brooklyn Nine Nine-I love it. Terry Crews and Andy Samberg have a direct line to my funny bone.
Steven Universe-This is me and my kids equally. I love its artistic look and the content. My kids love it because it’s very well suited for kids. To describe it in simplest terms, a young boy named Steven Universe lives with three “Crystal Gems” who help protect the world from other malicious Gems. In more complex terms, it explains the complexities of relationships, both healthy and unhealthy, and ALL types of relationships, to kids in ways they can understand. And I love that.
Gotham-I tried to pick this up a few years ago to watch, but was too busy to get into it. Trying now and so far, so good.
End of the F***ing World-It’s pretty good so far. The female lead is decidedly unlikable and I am thrilled and can’t wait to see where that takes us. (I get excited when male and female characters are removed from their gender normative behavior boxes. It’s progress!)
Black Mirror-My husband can’t stand this show but I love it! We also have prime video (thanks mum!) so I want to try out Philip K Dick’s Electric Dreams because I heard the two are very similar.
The Crown season 2-Good, but a little disappointing. It’s moving a lot slower than season one and so it doesn’t hold much sway over me when I’m trying to decide what to throw on while tacking the mountains of laundry my family seems to accrue.
I don’t know if I’ve said this in previous posts about my queue, but what I watch depends on whose in the room with me and what mood I’m in. So while it looks like I spend a lot of time watching tv (HA. HA. HA. *continues sad sarcastic crying alone in corner*), I actually end up choosing one show and getting to watch maybe two episodes a day-one while doing laundry or while Squish is napping and one with the husband in bed before we both pass out from sheer exhaustion. Steven Universe is played the most because it’s easy to throw on and watch with the kids while I do homework, but my current favorites are Gotham, The Path, and This is Us. I’m caught up on everything else for the season.
LASTLY! My 2018 Reading challenge!
I hope you’ve made it this far with me, I realize how huge this post is. I’m going less ambitious than the previous two years and a few of the books are re-reads BUT I am doing a “Book to Silver Screen” challenge this year. Anything that would spark my fancy that is being made into a movie or tv series is being read by me. The books I chose are:
Ready Player One-Ernest Cline -I’ve actually already read this several times (despite my recent goodreads activity) and will read it again after I finish Scythe.
Wrinkle In Time-Madeleine L’Engle- Another book I’ve read before, this one too many times to count. It’s one of my top ten books that led to my love of reading.
In The Woods-Tana French- I just bought this and a couple of others this week with a B&N giftcard I got for my birthday. It looks super intriguing.
Good Omens -Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett: My husband bought this for me for my birthday and so it’s very far up my to read list!
Ophelia-Lisa M. Klein- I haven’t read this but I’ve seen it at the library several times and meant to pick it up.
The Alienist-Caleb Carr-This one was brought to my attention by my mum. I actually watched the first episode of the TV series last night and it was so so so good. It makes me excited for the book!
Every Day – David Levithan- I saw the preview for the movie and it intrigued me enough to add the book to my reading challenge. The reviews on Goodreads seem pretty mixed so it will be interesting to see what side I fall on.
I know my challenge is dismally small but I will add to it if I finish all these with time to spare. Darn college…gets in the way of my reading time!
What’s everyone been reading? Any recommendations? I’d love to add them to my TBR!