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Showing posts from January, 2014

First Chapter - First Paragaph(s) - Tuesday Intros (Jan. 28)

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Here is my choice:

A Great Game by Stephen J. Harper Originally published November 2013
March 14, 1908: Saturday night at the Montreal Arena at the corner of St. Catherine Street and Wood Avenue.  Also known as Westmount Arena, the ten-year-old hockey rink with the natural ice and the novel rounded corners is the largest int eh country.  Along with many hundreds who will stand, 4,500 fans will cram into the rows of hard wooden seats they can soften and warm with rugs available for rent. Outdoors, it has been a mild, springlike day at the tail end of a soft winter in which the St. Lawrence River has remained open longer than it has for thirty years.  Indoors, a battle for the Stanley Cup is about to begin.
What do you think?  Would you keep reading or know somebody who may?  If you wish to join,  go to http://bibliophilebythesea.blogspot.com and enter your own.

#wintersrespite Update No.1

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I got quite a bit of reading done today, at least compared to the amount that I have been reading over the last couple of weeks.

Here is what I did:
• worked a little bit more on both Possession and Winter's Tale today
• got A Great Game by Stephen Harper started and its looking like I could potentially get this one completed during the coming week.
• made plans to get more books worked on during the week (at the time of me writing this post, I am planning on reading into the wee hours of the morning so I can get a bit more of Flight Behavior done).

Hope you have a great reading day on Tuesday and I hope to post in about 24 hours!

#wintersrespite Starting Post

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There is nothing that goes better than winter and reading, at least in my books.  And one of my fellow bloggers clearly thinks the same way.  And honestly what better excuse could there be.

And for me, this seems like the perfect way to get myself reading again, after about a week or so off from reading on a regular basis.

Here are my plans for the week:
• finish the first epoch of The Woman in White
• get a bit more of The Count of Monte Cristo, War & Peace, and Winter's Tale completed.
• try to get a bit more into Possession and Flight Behavior
• start reading The Goldfinch

I will see how things go and I am hoping that I get most, if not all of it crossed off.

Mailbox Monday (Jan. 20)

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Mailbox Monday is a place for readers to share the books that came into their homes during the past week.  After being hosted at a number of blogs over the past few years, it has gone back to its home base, the aptly named, Mailbox Monday.

Got the last of my books that I ordered for Christmas and this will likely be my last Mailbox Monday for some time, unless I receive something for my birthday.  Here is what I received in the mail this past Thursday:


I got the book because I am planning on visiting London in the near future.

It's Monday! What are you reading? (Jan. 20)

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t's Monday! What are you reading? is a fun weekly meme that is hosted by Shelia at Book Journey, in which we share what we've read and reviewed and what we plan on reading in the coming week.

Books finished this week:
None

Books reviewed this week:
None

Books I am planning on reading this week:
• War & Peace
• Possession
• The Count of Monte Cristo
• Moon over Manifest
• Winter's Tale
• Flight Behavior
• The Woman in White

First Chapter - First Paragaph(s) - Tuesday Intros (Jan. 14)

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Here is my choice for this week:
Winter's Tale by Mark Helprin Originally published October 1983
There was a white horse, on a quiet winter morning when snow covered the streets gently and was not deep, and the sky was swept with vibrant stars, except in the east, where dawn was beginning in a light blue flood.  The air was motionless, but would soon start to move as the sun came up and winds from Canada came charging down the Hudson.
What do you think? Would you keep reading? If you wish to join, go to http://bibliophilebythesea.blogspot.com.

#boutofbooks Day 7 & Wrap-up

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Yesterday no reading happened, unless you account for the numerous times I went to the CBC News website or scrolled through my Facebook newsfeed or read a bit of a newspaper this evening.  But if you asked if I read a book, I didn't.  I think part of it was that I was tired and the other half of it was that I just couldn't concentrate on any sort of reading.  I realize that this is a wrap-up, but I am hoping to do a bit more reading in the coming days, but time will tell.

As for what I did this past week, I think it was quite successful, in that I was able to finish two books and post the reviews for those books and I did manage read a bit more of The Count of Monte Cristo and got about 120 pages completed of Winter's Tale.  I guess one could say that I did have a successful week and thinking about it now, it was pretty successful and I am looking forward to the next Bout of Books.

Links from previous days:
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3 
Day 4 
Day 5 
Day 6

It's Monday! What are you reading? (Jan. 13)

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It's Monday! What are you reading? is a fun weekly meme that is hosted by Shelia at Book Journey, in which we share what we've read and reviewed and what we plan on reading in the coming week.

Books finished this week:
• Christmas Bliss by Mary Kay Andrews

Books reviewed this week:
• Villette by Charlotte Bronte (review)
• Christmas Bliss by Mary Kay Andrews (review)

Books I am planning on working on this week:
• War & Peace
• Possession
• The Count of Monte Cristo
• Moon over Manifest
• Winter's Tale

Hope you have a good reading week!

Mailbox Monday (Jan. 13)

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Mailbox Monday is a place for readers to share the books that came into their homes during the past week.  After being hosted at a number of blogs over the past few years, it has gone back to its home base, the aptly named, Mailbox Monday.

Got a number of the books that I had ordered on the gift card that I had purchased the e-books that I purchased last week.   A couple of them I received last Monday evening in a nice big box; the last one I picked up at the post office kiosk on Sunday morning.  Here is what I received:


I received Winter's Tale and The Goldfinch (along with the movie version of The Help) in a big box and have been reading Winter's Tale for most of the week (I borrowed the audio version of the book a few days earlier from the library and don't think I could be as far if I wasn't also listening to the audio at the same time).  I picked up Runaway on Sunday morning (thank goodness Canada Post has postal outlets in stores or I probably wouldn't have …

Sunday Salon - Right Now (1/12/14)

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Time: 3:43 pm
Place: Home
Listening: Not much
Eating: Going to grab a snack after I finish this and post.
Watching: The AFC Championship.  Looking like its a match up between Payton Manning and Tom Brady next week.
Reading: Right now, I am trying to read Winter's Tale, but am starting to get a bit bored with it.
Making: Made some meatballs for tomorrow night's dinner this afternoon.
Planning: On doing not much for the next few days; did a lot last week and am feeling a little bit tired.
Feeling: Frustrated.  I don't really know why, but it just seems like nothing is going the way that I would like it to.
Loving: that I can relax for a little bit.
Wanting: not to think much at the moment.
Thinking: that I just want to relax
Looking forward to: a more relaxed week in which I can watch some DVDs and read a little more.

Reviews:
• Starry Night by Debbie Macomber (review)
• Villette by Charlotte Bronte (review)
• Christmas Bliss by Mary Kay Andrews (review)

#boutofbooks Day 6

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Got a little bit more done of Winter's Tale today, but not much else.  Am hopping that Sunday is a bit more successful.

Previous Days:
Links from previous days:
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3 
Day 4 
Day 5

#boutofbooks Day 5

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Didn't do much reading today due to some things that I needed to get done, but I did get some reading done and completed up to Chapter 43 of The Count of Monte Cristo and a bit of a newspaper at the Starbucks that I hung out for most of the evening.

I didn't do a lot of reading primarily due to the fact that I am really tired and I had somethings that needed my attention.  I also felt like I just needed a day away from reading, as I had read 5 hours of Winter's Tale the day before.

I am hoping to get some reading done tomorrow afternoon and maybe some in the late evening hours, but how I feel will depend on how much is actually done.

Links from previous days:
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3 
Day 4

#boutofbooks Day 4

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Read mainly again from Winter's Tale today and at the moment I want to either read something really super light or just watch some TV before I go to bed or maybe a chapter from War & Peace.  I am really enjoying Winter's Tale and am hoping to get most, if not all of it done, before the movie comes out on February 14.

Did manage to complete Christmas Bliss before I went to sleep and posted my review here.

As for Friday, probably a bit more of Winter's Tale, start up Possession, and read from a number of the classics that I would like to work on before the readathon ends, but I'll see how I feel.  Till tomorrow.

Links from previous days:
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3

Christmas Bliss - Mary Kay Andrews

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Title: Christmas Bliss
Author: Mary Kay Andrews
Pages: 294
Published: 2013
Challenges: I Love Libraries, Outdo Yourself
Genre: Fiction, Christmas, Romance
Edition: Hardcover
Source: Library

Description: Christmas is coming, but Savannah antique dealer Weezie Foley is doubly distracted both by her upcoming wedding to her longtime love, chef Daniel Stipanek and also by the fact that her best friend and maid-of-honor BeBe Loudermilk is due to give birth any day and is still adamantly refusing to marry her live-in-love Harry. (via Goodreads)

Thoughts: I saw this book reviewed by another blogger that I read on a regular basis and thought I would give this a try.  Not being able to get to this before Christmas, I was able to start it on New Years Day.   

It was clear from the outset that I had missed quite a bit of the back story of the two main characters, even though there is enough information given throughout the book that you don't really feel like you have to read the previous books…

#boutofbooks Day 3

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Today I mainly worked on reading Winter's Tale by Mark Helprin and ignored everything else that was on my list.  I also returned my library e-book of Life after Life, as I know that I wouldn't be able to complete it in the 6 days that I had remaining. 

I am hoping to complete Christmas Bliss before I head to sleep.

As for my plans for tomorrow, I don't really know, as I don't know if I am going to drive or take the bus (depends on how wet it is outside tomorrow and how much I feel like waiting in the rain for the bus).  But if I do, I will find something to read, whether it be on my e-reader or another book that I have available to read.  I will probably start reading Flight Behavior, but I'll see what mood I am in to start it.  I will likely do some reading of either The Count of Monte Cristo or War & Peace or both, but it will be dependent on time.

Links from previous days:
Day 1
Day 2

#boutofbooks Day 2

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Tuesday was a bit more successful, reading wise.  I got about half of Christmas Bliss completed, started reading Winter's Tale by Mark Helprin (there's a movie coming out on Feb. 14 based on the book), and finished reading Villette this evening (you can read my review here).

As for my plans for Wednesday, I am hoping to possibly complete Christmas Bliss or get close to finishing, to get a bit more of Winter's Tale completed, and work on War & Peace and The Count of Monte Cristo a bit more.

Right now I want to go to sleep and get some much needed sleep.

Nonfiction Reading Challenge 2014

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I know what some of you are thinking, but I am not going to go there.  This is a pretty simple challenge in that one can read anything classified as being non-fiction.  It can include memoirs, biographies, travel books, and anything else that one would be considered to be non-fiction.

The levels are as such:
Dilettante--Read 1-5 non-fiction books

Explorer--Read 6-10

Seeker--Read 11-15

Master--Read 16-20

This challenge will last from January 1 to December 31, 2014. You can sign up anytime throughout the year.

Jen at the Introverted Reader is not limiting it to bloggers, but you can also link up to reviews that you leave on Goodreads, LibraryThing, or any other site that you leave reviews on.

You can do crossovers with other challenges and can read books in any format that you feel comfortable in.

I am going to aim for the Dilettante level.

If you wish to sign up for this particular challenge, you can click the photo above and link up there.   She also has a separate post to link up revi…

Villette - Charlotte Brontë

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Title: Villette
Author: Charlotte Brontë
Pages (File Size): 440 (917 KB)
Published: 2012 (originally published 1853)
Challenges: Ebook, The Classics Club, Outdo Yourself
Genre: Classics, Fiction
Edition: E-book
Source: Personal

Description: With neither friends nor family, Lucy Snowe sets sail from England to find employment in a girls’ boarding school in the small town of Villette. There she struggles to retain her self-possession in the face of unruly pupils, an initially suspicious headmaster, and her own complex feelings, first for the school’s English doctor and then for the dictatorial professor, Paul Emmanuel. Charlotte Brontë’s last and most autobiographical novel is a powerfully moving study of isolation and the pain of unrequited love, narrated by a heroine determined to preserve an independent spirit in the face of adverse circumstances. (via Goodreads)

Thoughts: I probably took too much time to read this book and should have completed the book in a quicker fashion and th…

#boutofbooks Day 1

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Did a little bit of reading yesterday: read a couple chapters of Villette, a little bit of Life after Life and Christmas Bliss.  I am hoping to get some more reading completed, including completing Villette.

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (Jan. 6)

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It's Monday! What are you reading? is a fun weekly meme that is hosted by Shelia at Book Journey, in which we share what we've read and reviewed and what we plan on reading in the coming week.

Books finished this week:
• Starry Night
• Villette

Books reviewed this week:
• Starry Night by Debbie Macomber (review)

Books I am planning on reading this week:
• War & Peace
• Possession
• The Count of Monte Cristo
• Life after Life
• Moon over Manifest
• Christmas Bliss

Mailbox Monday (Jan. 6)

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Mailbox Monday is a gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their homes during the past week.  The meme started with Marcia who now blogs at To Be Continued.  After a series of hosts of the past while, it is now being hosted at home base, the aptly named blog, Mailbox Monday.

I had some money left on a gift card that I received for Christmas, so I bought a few ebooks.  A couple of them are classics and one of them is a movie that is coming out this March.


(the middle book is The Canterbury Tales; didn't purchase copies of the last two with those covers, but with different covers instead)

Starry Night - Debbie Macomber

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Title: Starry Night
Author: Debbie Macomber
Pages: 256
Published: 2013
Challenges: Christmas Spirit, Outdo Yourself,  I Love Library Books
Genre: Christmas, Fiction, Romance
Edition: Hardcover
Source: Library

Description: Carrie Slayton, a big-city society-page columnist, longs to write more serious news stories. So her editor hands her a challenge: She can cover any topic she wants, but only if she first scores the paper an interview with Finn Dalton, the notoriously reclusive author. 

Living in the remote Alaskan wilderness, Finn has written a mega-bestselling memoir about surviving in the wild. But he stubbornly declines to speak to anyone in the press, and no one even knows exactly where he lives.
Digging deep into Finn’s past, Carrie develops a theory on his whereabouts. It is the holidays, but her career is at stake, so she forsakes her family celebrations and flies out to snowy Alaska. When she finally finds Finn, she discovers a man both more charismatic and more s…

Bout of Books 9.0 Goals

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As I stated earlier last month, Bout of Books 9.0 is coming up and I believe you can still sign up.    I have done this readathon pretty much from the start and despite my reservations at times, I do enjoy this one, as it helps me get some reading done when I might otherwise not get any done. And this comes at the perfect time.

If you don't know anything about Bout of Books, here is a brief description of it:

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 6th and runs through Sunday, January 12th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure, and the only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books read in a week. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 9.0 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - …

Read One Million Pages Challenge

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I know that some of you are thinking what is she doing and is she nuts?   Well what I am doing is entering a challenge to read one million pages in my lifetime.  And yes, I am nuts.  Its a pretty simple concept: read one million pages.   If you wish to join me in the challenge, you can sign up at Smiling Shelves.

I don't know what the rate would be at about 20,000 pages per year, but gathering on the information that I can gather from the blog that is hosting this that it may take me about 50 years, but if I read more, it would take me a shorter amount of time.  Not this year, but in 2015, I will keep a running total at the end of book reviews so that (a) its easier for me to keep track of the number of pages read and (b) you can see my progress.  I will also update this page at the end of each year and get a progress bar set up, if I can find a site that does this sort of thing that just adds it up for me).

2014:

Challenge Addicts 2014

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Hi, my name is Melissa and I'm a Reading Challenge Addict.

Here are the reading challenges that I have signed up for this coming year (2014):

Back to the Classics
Chunkster Challenge
Ebook Reading Challenge
Eclectic Reader Challenge
Finishing the Series Reading Challenge
Historical Fiction Reading Challenge
I Love Library Books Reading Challenge
Nonfiction Reading Challenge
Outdo Yourself Challenge
Pre-Printing Press Challenge
Shakespeare Reading Challenge
TBR Pile Challenge
TBR Pile Reading Challenge @ Bookish
War Through the Generations

I have entered into 14 different challenges to start of the year and will aim for the In-flight level.

Challenges I gave up on:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.

Challenges I failed:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.

Reading challenges completed:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
10.
11.
12.
13.
14.

2014 Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge Sign-Up

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For full rules and challenge details, please visit The Book Vixen
I did this last year didn't do too well, so I am going to scale back and aim for Getting my heart rate up level.
I will probably do an update post at the start of each month to let people know where I am and to link to reviews for this challenge (and other challenges) that were read during the course of the month.

First Book of the Year 2014

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Happy New Year!  I hope everybody isn't too tired after celebrating and that you are ready to start a new year of reading and finding new books.  And even though I am still a little groggy from last night, I am ready to start a new year of reading and exploring new books.

And to start the year off, I am going to start off with Christmas Bliss; it looks like a fairly easy read and something that I can probably finish today as I watch a couple of hockey games (one this afternoon and one this evening).


I hope you all have a quiet and relaxing day, however you have chosen to spend it!