Reading Update // Slumpsville

Reading Update // Slumpsville

Hello! My name is Simone and I’m the Mayor of Slumpsville. Earlier this week, I was in a pretty bad reading slump. If you’re not aware of what that is, a slump is when you try to read a book but the words are just words and it’s tough for you to get to the next page. You’d rather be checking your phone than reading your book. You’d rather do anything than pick up a book. And this was me.

Slumps happen to all of us. We all marathon a whole series and then don’t want to look at anything else for a while. We read that big tome and it burnt us out. If you’re me, then you’re reading books for work that aren’t the best books.

The only remedy for a slump? Time. I know many people suggest watching tv or doing other chores or taking a walk or catching up on something else, but the truth is that all you need is time. When we go into a slump, I like to think my brain is tired and there’s no other way to combat exhaustion than just letting it go and enjoying my time away from books.

But then Wednesday I started a quick contemporary YA called HOT DOG GIRL by Jennifer Dugan (review to come) and that did the trick. This is why I love to keep a good mix of books in my TBR. If I’m in a bad slump, I don’t want to read something big and heavy with lots of themes or character development. I want something quick and easy and fun and my last read was the perfect combination. It wasn’t the most prolific piece of work I’ve ever read and it didn’t need to be. I always have tons of fun reading something light and it did exactly what it needed to do.

Now that I’m back on course, I’m finishing up THE TWO LILA BENNETTS by Lisa Fenton and Liz Stenke for my book club this weekend, and about to start an epic fantasy that I’ve been dying to read. I needed to do some work and read some priority reads, but I’m finally ready. Can you guess what I’ll be reading?

Reading Update // July 12, 2019

Reading Update // July 12, 2019

Captain’s Log

Stardate: 07122019

Ok, I’m just being a little silly there, but I love my little reading updates. I feel like I can disappear for a week and then come back and be like “what’s up, here’s what happened to me this week and why my blog’s been so silent.”

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This week, I was occupied reading a pretty big novel. It was about 700 pages and dedicating my time to a book that book requires a lot of factors. I was asking this on Instagram the other day what are the requirements you need to get into a big book and many people had some amazing responses. I’m always fascinated with reasons why people read certain way. For example, there were a few folks who said they only read big books. WOW! Others talked about prepping the big book with some smaller reads before it so you don’t feel like you’re spending too much time with the big book. I’ll have to write this all day and give you a proper blog post about it, but this week has really got me thinking about big books and why we read them. I also figured out a way that really helps digest a big book slowly without feeling like you’re spending too much time on it.

But now that I’m done reading the big fantasy book, I kind of want to read another big fantasy. I don’t know about you, but when a genre fails to deliver what I’m looking for in a read, I tend to just marathon a few books within the genre to find something that blows me away. Since I was unhappy with the book I just finished, I figured why not read another big fantasy or a fantasy that’s been tried-and-true good; a book that has a lot of positive reviews and everyone has loved.

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So I decided my next big fantasy read will be The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson. If you’re not aware, he’s one of the best adult fantasy authors. I mean, the man finished Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series after he passed away, so he must know what he’s doing.

The Way of Kings is the first book in his Stormlight Archive series. It’s close to 1000 pages long, which for the most part isn’t an issue with many of the reviews I’ve read. No one’s complained about the length, which makes me think this book moves. And if the pace is good, then 1000 pages doesn’t seem so bad. I don’t know how my poor little hands will feel after holding a book of this length in them for long periods of time, but that’s a bridge I’ll cross when I get there.

However, before I can even start this book, I need to read three more books. I’ve got two book club reads, some promotional books to read, and not a lot of time left in July. Wow, it’s already mid-month? I think this will be my short TBR for the next couple of reads:

The Two Lila Bennetts by Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke

The Music of What Happens by Bill Konisberg

Devil in Spring by Lisa Kleypas

I think this weekend I’ll be finishing up The Music of What Happens and Devil in Spring because I’ve already started them. Then I’ll dedicate some time to The Two Lila Bennets and hopefully I’ll be able to start The Way of Kings after that.

Phew, the rest of this month is going to be a doozy! What will you be reading this month?

 

Reading Update // June 14, 2019

Reading Update // June 14, 2019

Happy Friday everyone! I hope you’re all going to be spending time outdoors this weekend and soaking in that summer sun. I just hope there’s a little sun in June here in LA to enjoy. I wanted to approach the end of my week a little differently and give you a reading update from the week!

This week, I went to San Diego with my hubby for a few days. We just wanted a getaway with some fun in the sun. We most definitely got what we seeked out and went home with a new tan, a new burn, and a new book. We actually packed in a lot of fun and adventure for ourselves within the three days we were there. It was a great few days away from work, but I also had work looming in the back of my mind the entire time.

I checked out Mysterious Galaxy, which is a bookstore dedicated to speculative fiction, romance, and horror/thrillers. When I went to the LA Festival of Books, I saw the Mysterious Galaxy booth and surprised that it existed. I knew if I went back to San Diego, I would make a special trip over there. Luckily for me, it was about 10 minutes from our Airbnb and so we made a pit stop before heading down to Pacific Beach for lunch.

I honestly believe if I lived in San Diego, I would just go there and make friends with all the employees. I would somehow find myself working there part-time without getting paid because of all the time I spent there. If there was a couch in the store, I would most definitely have my very own butt groove imprinted into the seats.

Usually when I go to bookstores on vacation, I pick up memorabilia from the store, but I wasn’t a fan of the stuff they had available, so I decided I would pick out a book instead. If you visit bookstores on vacation, I strongly encourage you to pick out at least one book or buy a t-shirt or tote bag from the store. You can easily support a local bookstore this way and come away with a nifty little souvenir to remind you of your visit.

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I picked up The Assassin’s Apprentice by Robin Hobb.  This Assassins series has been high on my read list and I’m finally committed to reading the book. I honestly feel like if I own the book, the commitment to reading the book is baked into the receipt. Bookstores should seriously write a disclaimer on their receipts that says “note: your purchase of this book commits you to reading it. We’ll be waiting for your review.”

Of course I’m teasing about that second part.

For reading, I took Patron Saints of Nothing by Randy Ribay with me and learned that I’m terrible at reading on vacation. I knew we were only going to be in town for three days, so I hedged my bets and brought one book. I’m so glad I did because I ended up only reading half the book and finishing it when I get home. I don’t want to give too much away, but let’s just say it was really good. Review to come next week!

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One thing I noticed while we were out there was that I love reading by bodies of water. Put me in front of the ocean or by a lake and I’m totally in my zone. I love the sound of the waves or nature around me while I turn pages in my book. It’s soothing and legit my self-care. I think I’ll be making a lot of trips to the beach this summer (especially since I live so close).

But I noticed that I’m terrible at reading on vacation. When we’re on vacation, we’re out and about and checking out landmarks and nature and historical buildings and all that. I’ve worn my Apple Watch on vacation and noticed the 20,000 steps my husband and I take over the course of our day. We are not sitting by the pool people (although I would much rather be doing that). So reading kind of falls by the wayside and that was obvious here too because I only read half of my book.

My reading life aside from that is a total burning trash heap. I’m in the middle of four books, I have three books to review for work, and I don’t know when I’ll have time to participate in either my book club reading or the Dune buddy read I signed up to be in. Ever have that feeling you’ve put way too many things on my plate? I feel like this might be par for the course for me because I always pile food onto a tiny ass plate believing that I’m “portion controlling” but really I’m taking more than I can handle.

So the focus of this weekend is to get back on track. I’m going to finish my work book, write that review. Then I’m going to finish up my half-read books and hopefully feel better about my place in my TBR.

How’s your reading life been going?