Dewey’s 24 Hour #readathon

Today is Dewey’s 24 hour Readathon and I’m so excited! This is a readathon that lasts for 24 hours and people from all over participate in it. Of course, you don’t have to read for the entire 24 hours. There are also mini challenges to participate in and you can cheer on all the other participants. I’ll be posting my updates here and on Twitter if you want to follow along.

                       

These are the books I’ve picked for the readathon and I know I won’t get through most of them. I wanted to have various options during the day in case I get tired of a book. Not pictured are two books on my kindle and 2 audiobooks as well as a book I forgot to put in the picture.

TBR
Go Ask Alice by Anonymous
On Dublin Street by Samantha Young
The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith
The Professor’s Daughter by Joann Sfar & Emmanuel Guibert
The Cinderella Murder by Mary Higgins Clark & Alafair Burke
Daddy’s Gone a Hunting by Mary Higgins Clark
Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
Wild by Cheryl Strayed (not pictured)
Loving Lucas by Violetta Rand (Kindle)
Crushed by Lauren Layne (Kindle)
Grey by E.L. James (audio)
A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab (audio)

Goals for the Day
I would like to finish 3 books and participate in several mini challenges. This is my first time participation in the 24 hour readathon so I’m not sure yet how well I will do as far as achieving my goals goes.

Introductory Meme
1. What fine part of the world are you reading from today? I’m in Jackson, Mississippi
2. Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to? The Cinderella Murder and Loving Lucas.
3. Which snack are you most looking forward to? Being pregnant, I gave a lot of thought to my snacks and I’m most looking forward to the frozen waffles and the pizza bagel I plan on making later. 
4. Tell us a little something about yourself! My name is Brittany. I try not to stick to just one genre which you should be able to tell by my stack of books for this 🙂 I’m currently 31 weeks pregnant and can’t wait to share my love of reading with my daughter and I already read out loud to her even though she isn’t here yet. 
5. If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? If this is your first read-a-thon, what are you most looking forward to? This is my first time participating and I’m most looking forward to all the reading I’m going to be able to do today as well as all the cheering that will be going on. I love the idea that there are so many people reading together around the world. 

End of Hour 1
I started Wild by Cheryl Strayed and have gotten about 10 pages in. So far it seems like it should be interesting. 
End of Hour 2
I only got through another 20 pages in Wild due to eating breakfast and cleaning up after my cat but I feel like I’ve had a productive morning already since it is now only 9am here.
End of Hour 3
I swapped to Grey by E.L. James on audio so that I could rest my eyes and sort through some baby clothes I was given. 
End of Hour 4
I’ve still been listening to Grey and I’m currently 64% through it. I’m going back to Wild now and hope to read quite a bit of it this hour. I will probably be taking a nap soon though.
End of Hour 7
I took an hour long nap and then refueled with some lunch. For hour 8 I plan to start The Professor’s Daughter since it’s a short graphic novel.
End of Hour 8
I started and finished The Professor’s Daughter. I also participated in the Airmchair Traveling mini challenge where I chose to go to Savannah, Georgia in The Last Song to spend time on the beach. Now I’m going to start The Cinderella Murder. 
End of Hour 9
I’m 5 chapters into The Cinderella Murder and so far it’s so good! I forgot how much I enjoy Mary Higgins Clark and will definitely be reading more from her in the future. Now back to reading. 
End of Hour 10
I’m currently on page 94 of The Cinderella Murder. My eyes are starting to hurt and I need food so I will be taking a break for at least the next hour so that I can recharge. The weather is nice so I may take a walk after I get something to eat.
Mid-event Survey
1. What are you reading right now? The Cinderella Murder by Mary Higgins Clark and Alafair Burke
2. How many books have you read so far? I’ve finished one book, read part of 2 others, and listened to part of one. 
3. What book are you most looking forward to for the second half of the Read-a-thon? Loving Lucas
4. Have you had many interruptions? How did you deal with those? I’ve only had two interruptions that weren’t planned and I just went with the flow and didn’t let them bother me. 
5. What surprises you most about the Read-a-thon, so far? I love how many people are participating actively on twitter. I knew this read-a-thon was popular but I had no idea it would be trending on twitter so quickly!

End of Hour 13
After a much needed break, I’m back to reading The Cinderella Murder. During my break, I ate dinner and participated in the Recommendation Train mini challenge. I’ve got Sleeping with Sirens playing in the background so that it isn’t too quite in my apartment. 

End of Hour 14
I’m making good progress on The Cinderella Murder. I hope to finish it in the next hour and a half or so.

End of Hour 16 
I’m still working on The Cinderella Murder and have less than a hundred pages left. It’s 11pm here so I really hope to finish this book soon. I’m starting to get tired and I just can’t stay up as late anymore. 

End of Hour 17
I finished The Cinderella Murder. Now I’m getting some sleep. This will probably be the end of the read-a-thon for me.

Books finished: 2
Pages read: 570
Audio listening time: 1 hour 44 min


The Glass Arrow by Kristen Simmons #Review

Title: The Glass Arrow
Author: Kristen Simmons

Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian
Format: Hardcover, 336 pages

Publisher: Tor Teen
Publication Date: February 10th 2015

The Handmaid’s Tale meets Blood Red Road in Glass Arrow, the story of Aya, who lives with a small group of women on the run from the men who hunt them, men who want to auction off breeding rights to the highest bidder.
In a world where females are scarce and are hunted, then bought and sold at market for their breeding rights, 15-year old Aya has learned how to hide. With a ragtag bunch of other women and girls, she has successfully avoided capture and eked out a nomadic but free existence in the mountains. But when Aya’s luck runs out and she’s caught by a group of businessmen on a hunting expedition, fighting to survive takes on a whole new meaning.
Review

Kristen Simmons created a world vivid and terrifying when she wrote The Glass Arrow. This is a world where girls are auctioned off to the highest bidder strictly for breeding purposes and the men can send them back when they are done with them. It’s a lot like the sex trafficking that goes on in today’s world so it wouldn’t be too far of a stretch for this to actually happen. However, today’s women would not be as submissive about it as the girls in this book were. 

Aya is such a strong female character and I admire her spunk. She tries her best at the beginning to not get captured but once her luck runs out and a group of businessmen catch her, she refuses to just give in to how society thinks she should act. Most of the other girls in The Garden are mean to her but I think it’s because she doesn’t have to take fertility treatments since she grew up basically in the wild and was not exposed to the things the other girls are. 

I have to gush about Kiran for a minute. He is a driver which means that he cannot speak. When he first meets Aya, they are both terrified of the other which leads to Aya basically trying to kill him. Once she realizes he isn’t going to hurt her though, I love the way they interacted. She would just go on and on about her life and he would just sit with her and listen. Since he can’t tell her his name, she makes one up for him based on his eye color. The romance that blossoms between them is so sweet. 

I have to say that my favorite character in the whole book though was Brax. Brax is a wolf that comes to sleep with Aya in The Garden and he is so adorable. He’s super protective and everything you want in your best friend, especially a fur baby. There was one part near the end that I didn’t like but I won’t go into details because I don’t want to spoil anything for anyone. 

I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a good read, especially if you like to dive into dystopian books. If you’ve read The Glass Arrow, let me know your thoughts on it in the comments below. I’d love to hear from you.

Rating: 4.5 stars

TTT: Ten Author Duos I’d Love to Write A Book Together

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. This week’s topic is Top Ten Author Duos You’d Love to Write A Book Together. This was a hard topic because there are so many great authors out there and it’s hard to pick just ten duos.

1. Melody Anne and M. Malone
2. Ainsley Booth and Selena Kitt
3. Shannon Hale and Jessica Day George

4. Marissa Meyer and Kristen Simmons

5. Leigh Bardugo and Sarah J. Maas

6. Jennifer L Armentrout and Colleen Hoover

7. Stephen King and J.K. Rowling

8. Dahlia Adler and A.J. Pine

9. Morgan Matson and Gayle Forman

10. Zoe York and Elle Kennedy

Weekly Book Recap #22

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly meme hosted by Book Journey.

The Dewey 24 hr Readathon is coming up on October 17th and I will be participating in that.

What I Posted: 
Bad Boy Daddy by Chance Carter


Up Next: 

Loving Lucas by Violetta Rand

Craft Time #2

I didn’t get to work on any of my crafts this week. I’m now in the third trimester of pregnancy and so this week I just wasn’t feeling up to working on my crochet or painting. I am however in full nesting mode right now and the difference in my desk at work is amazing. I’ve been working on cleaning my apartment and making it almost spotless. If only my cat would agree to let things stay where I put them then it would be a lot easier. Hopefully next week will be much more productive in the crafting sense.

Seven Dirty Words by Charlotte Howard #BlogTour #Review

Seven Dirty Words by Charlotte Howard
Erotic Romance
Date Published: June 2015
Paige Holmes hides herself in a masculine world in a desperate attempt to remain safe.
Just as she is ready to face her fears and her past, she finds herself torn between Matt Jackson and Vance Ellery: handsome, rich, and safe – or handsome, rich, and dangerous?
Which will she choose?
The one who appears to be the most perfect, or the one who makes her use all Seven Dirty Words?
Excerpt

“I’ve never seen a girl eat like you.” He laughed.
“I’m starving,” I said, in between mouthfuls of prawns and peas, trying to ignore the dimming room. A crash overhead started the storm’s symphony. Fat raindrops splattered against the window as the room lit with a sudden flash. Seconds later, another rumble filled the air. I shuddered.
“Are you okay?”
“I don’t like thunder storms,” I admitted, finishing the last of my noodles. The truth was I was afraid of any loud noise.
“Don’t worry, I won’t force you out in this.”
“I forgot to bring a coat,” I grumbled, rubbing my arms as though it had suddenly got cold.
Matt stood and peered out the window. “It’ll be a while before this is over.” He picked up the plates and took them into the kitchen. I followed him, not wanting to be alone.
As I walked in, I suddenly remembered the large windows, and saw the dreary sky blanketing the village. My eyes widened in fear as another flash filled the sky.
Matt smiled at me.
“What’s so funny?”
“You are.” He laughed, nearing me. “I didn’t think you were afraid of anything.”
“Appearances can be deceptive.”
“They most certainly can!” He took my hand and led me back into the living room. “Well, it looks like we’ll be here a bit longer than intended.” We sat back down on the sofa.
“And no TV to kill the time,” I said, staring at the empty fireplace. “Look, if you want to get rid of me, I can make a mad dash to the car door. It’s only rain.”      
“I don’t want to get rid of you, Paige.” As he said my name, the hairs on my neck and arms stood on end. “But I’m not willing to share you either.”

Review

Paige is one of those characters that I wasn’t sure if I was going to like or not. She had clearly been through something traumatic but it isn’t until later that it is discovered what that event is. She has very childish and selfish moments but that made her relatable so in the end I do like her. 

Paige ends up falling for two men; one older and very attractive bossy man and one younger, handsome, and more laid back. This wouldn’t be as big of a deal is they weren’t father and son. It makes for an interesting read but I felt like the ending was lacking. Hopefully, this is because the story is not over and there will be more to come. 

Rating: 3.5 stars 

About The Author

British author, Charlotte Howard, was born in Oman and spent much of the first part of her life flitting between Oman, Scotland, and England. Now settled in Somerset, Charlotte lives with her husband, two children, and growing menagerie of pets.
Her career as a writer began at an early age, with a poem being featured in an anthology for the East Midlands. Since then Charlotte has written many short stories and poems, and finally wrote her first full-length piece of fiction in 2010.
During what little spare time she has, Charlotte enjoys reading and writing (of course), spending time with her family, and watching action movies whilst eating curry and drinking tea.
Charlotte is an active member of Yeovil Creative Writers Group.

The Complete Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi #Review


Title: The Complete Persepolis
Author: Marjane Satrapi

Genre: Nonfiction
Format: Graphic Novel, 341 pages

Publisher: Pantheon
Publication Date: October 30th 2007

Here, in one volume: Marjane Satrapi’s best-selling, internationally acclaimed memoir-in-comic-strips.

Persepolis is the story of Satrapi’s unforgettable childhood and coming of age within a large and loving family in Tehran during the Islamic Revolution; of the contradictions between private life and public life in a country plagued by political upheaval; of her high school years in Vienna facing the trials of adolescence far from her family; of her homecoming–both sweet and terrible; and, finally, of her self-imposed exile from her beloved homeland. It is the chronicle of a girlhood and adolescence at once outrageous and familiar, a young life entwined with the history of her country yet filled with the universal trials and joys of growing up.
Edgy, searingly observant, and candid, often heartbreaking but threaded throughout with raw humor and hard-earned wisdom–Persepolis is a stunning work from one of the most highly regarded, singularly talented graphic artists at work today.
Review

Before I read this novel I had very little knowledge about Iran and even less knowledge about the Islamic Revolution. This definitely changed my thoughts on the country as a whole and how the people that are from there live. 

Marjane Satrapi tells her story of growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution and it was very captivating. She was very political for a 10-year-old but I loved seeing things through her eyes. I’m really glad she had the courage to tell her story. 

Rating: 4 stars

This book is on the list of Top Banned Books for 2014 because of the violence portrayed in it. I don’t believe in censorship so I can’t stand when books are banned. My problem with banning a work of nonfiction like this is that you can’t ban violence from the world and you can’t make something that happened just disappear. I can understand not wanting your child to read this book before they are ready to but that doesn’t mean that everyone else can’t read it. 

TTT: Top 10 Bookish Things I Want to Quit

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. This week’s topic is Top Ten Bookish Things I Want to Quit. When I first started thinking about this topic I couldn’t come up with anything at all. However, the more I thought about it, the more I realized that there are some things I want to quit.

What I Want to Quit: 

1. I always check out too many books from the library at one time and always end up returning several of them unread. I need to stop doing this and only check out the number of books that I can read during the time I have them.

2. I want to stop reading books where a character basically has no backbone and lets people walk all over them or is just way too submissive for their own good.

3. I want to stop buying new books until I read the ones I own. I own over 1000 kindle books and I know I haven’t read a majority of them but every time there is a sale or a free book for kindle I can’t help but get more. I want to stop or I’m never going to be able to read all of the books I have. (This is not even counting the 20+ books I physically own that I haven’t read yet).

4. I spend too much time focusing on how far into a book I’ve read and how much I’ve got left instead of just enjoying the book and the journey it is taking me on.

5. I don’t always take the time to write the review for a book once I’ve finished reading it. Sometimes I wait a month or longer which isn’t good because then the review is not the same quality that it would have been had I written it earlier.

What I’ve Already Quit: 

6. I used to be bad about pushing through to the end of a book even if it takes me months and I absolutely hate the story. Now I know it’s okay to not finish a book. There isn’t enough time to read all the wonderful books out there so I shouldn’t waste time on ones that aren’t working for me.

7. I used to feel like I haven’t accomplished anything if I’ve read less than 3 books in a week. Now I realize that it’s better to just go at my own pace and read what I can when I can. Which I guess it’s good I figured this out now than in December after my baby is born since I’m sure reading will be put on the back burner while I adjust to life as a mom.

Books I DNF This Year: 

8. Tall, Dark, and Bad by Charlotte Hughes: I just couldn’t get into this book and I can’t pinpoint a reason for it. 
9. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley: I tried to start this one last night and I just wasn’t feeling it. It’s supposed to be one of those great classics but it’s not my style. 

Weekly Book Recap #21

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly meme hosted by Book Journey.

What I Posted: 
One More Day by M. Malone
The Things I Do For You by M. Malone


Currently Reading: 

Seven Dirty Words by Charlotte Howard
Up Next: 
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

Craft Time: Current Work in Progress

I decided that since October is a new month that I would start a new feature on the blog. I will probably play with the name for this feature for a little bit until some spark of inspiration hits me with a name I like.

When I originally started this blog and came up with the name The Crafty Engineer’s Bookshelf, I wanted to incorporate the crafts I do but just wasn’t sure how. Now I think I’m ready to give it a go. So without further ado, I present to you what I’ve been working on this past week.

This week I’ve been working on a blanket that was part of a mystery CAL (crochet a long) for the beginning of the year. I got way behind on it (obviously) so I’m only on Part 3 of 21. To see what the finished blanket is supposed to look like as well as to get the pattern etc, check out Dedri Uys’s blog Look At What I Made. The link will take you directly to the page for Sophie’s Universe CAL.

I’m hoping to get a good bit of work done on this blanket over the weekend because I want to make some things for the baby before she makes her arrival in December. Does anyone else crochet or even knit? I’d love to hear about what you’re working on. It doesn’t even have to be those types of projects. I love any kind of project and would love to hear about them all!