Not Just Another Grouchy Grammarian

Musings about language, books, grammar, and writing in general

Archive for the month “September, 2018”

Book Riot’s READ HARDER Challenge and GOODREADS Reading Challenge Update #10

And here goes another installment of my reading list and bookish pursuits.

It’s been a busy month. I read a trilogy and a horror anthology, finished one serial on Serial Box, started the final season of another and began a third, read the newest in a mystery series I love, and had enough real life to keep things interesting. All my reading this month was for the GOODREADS Challenge only, however, and I need to remedy that this month.

Book #76 (Goodreads Challenge): I began the month with a recommendation from Cindy Guentert-Baldo – Kevin Kwan’s trilogy. The first book in that trilogy is Crazy Rich Asians. I’m not much on popular fiction, but this was a delightful book – It’s not quite chick lit, and it’s not quite a rom-com, but it tells the story of Rachel and Nick in a very quick and frothy read with a few darker moments.

Book #77 (Goodreads Challenge): Kwan’s trilogy continues with China Rich Girlfriend. Here the plot shifts from Rachel and Nick to his cousin and her husband, and to the stories of other of the secondary characters. By now, they all felt like old acquaintances, and it was wonderful to catch up on their stories.

Book #78 (Goodreads Challenge): The final book of Kwan’s trilogy is Rich People Problems. The focus is heavily on Nick and his grandmother in this one. It ties up the series nicely. The whole series took me about two and a half days to read and was well worth the time spent.

Book #79 (Goodreads Challenge): I’m not a horror reader in general, but I was invited to a book launch for A New York State of Fright, edited by James Chambers, April Grey, and Robert Masterson, published by Hippocampus Press. I was – I admit – predisposed to like at least two stories in the book because I know the writers, Hal Johnson and Patrick Thomas. (Full Disclosure: I also know the publisher slightly. The opinions herein are my own, however.) Much to my surprise, while I loved both stories from my friends, I was more impressed with several of the other stories. Alp Beck’s “Heels,” which I heard partially read at the launch was my main reason for purchasing the book, and it didn’t disappoint. In fact, I only felt one story wasn’t superb – and that just because I thought the ending had been telegraphed too early. Again, while horror is not my jam, this was an excellent example of contemporary horror. Oh – and all the stories are set in New York – either state or city – a big plus for me.

Book #80 – 84 (Goodreads Challenge): As most of you know, I am rather fond of a website/app called Serial Box. I finished the five books of their BOOKBURNERS series this month. I’m sorry to see this serial end. It’s held my attention all the way through but leaves some loose threads. I want to find out what happens to several of the protagonists whose endings are not shown in the last chapter.

Book #85 (Goodreads Challenge): Serial Box has also released the first, preview, chapter of the final season of TREMONTAINE, which is how I found them in the first place.

Book #86 – 88(Goodreads Challenge): The new series I started on Serial Box is something of an experiment for them. They have teamed up with The Associated Press to do a non-fiction series called 1776: The World Turned Upside Down. It covers the year 1776, in 12 chapters – one per month. Each chapter begins with an overview of the events taking place that month and then goes into the story. If you are a history fan, you will find it quite interesting, and worth subscribing to. I have already read the first three installments, and have the fourth queued up on my computer.

Book #89 (Goodreads Challenge): Donna Andrews has released the next chapter in her Meg Langslow mysteries. is another enjoyable chapter. It’s fun to watch her boys growing up, and watch her indomitable mother and father, as well as the other characters. This is another series where the characters feel like old friends settling in for a visit, and I can’t wait for the next book in the series.

I didn’t get more reading done this month because of various real-life issues. I’ve been fighting yet another round of cellulitis, a friend has had sudden, unexpected brain surgery (he’s doing fine so far), another friend has developed what seems to be pretty much terminal cancer, various friends have needed tech support, and my sister has her usual crises, so my attention has been pushed in all sorts of directions other than books.

In September, I will be attending a conference for people who are in the planner community – which is one of the groups that ties in with the bullet journal communities. I met some of the other folks who will be attending this evening, and they seem to be quite friendly and welcoming. At least I will see a few familiar faces when I get there.

So that is where things are at for August. I will try to blog more in September, but with the High Holy Days and my birthday, it’s going to be a pretty full month.

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