Rearview Mirror // June 2016 (+ 20 Books of Summer update!)

Well, I’ve spent a month being unemployed, and it’s awesome!  (As long as you have someone else paying the bills, of course… which I do!)  I’ve been getting lots of projects done around the house, although, of course, my family tends to hijack a lot of my time… sometimes I wonder if I should pretend that I’m still working…

Anyway, ironically, being home more actually means I’m reading less.  I had an enforced hour lunchbreak at my job, which meant lots of reading through the spring.  Now that I’m home, I’m spending way more time working in the garden and painting things than I am reading.  But I can never cut it off completely, so I’ve definitely made some progress.

Favorite June Read:

  • 133664Academ’s Fury by Jim Butcher – the second book in the Codex Alera series was an emotional rollercoaster of awesomeness that I had troubled putting down – except I had to put it down every chapter or two just to try and get my heart rate back under control!  I was amazed at how Butcher kept all his many plot lines flowing with perfect pacing, and was able to tie everything up in the end without feeling rushed.

Most Disappointing June Read:

  • 9781408854280The Watchmaker of Filigree Street by Natasha Pulley – I really, really wanted to like this book – except I couldn’t because it made no sense.  There was some beautiful writing, but it just wasn’t enough to pull things together.

Other June Reads:

  • Furies of Calderon by Jim Butcher – 4/5 – a fabulous start to the new fantasy series I’m reading – excellent world-building, engaging characters, and plenty of adventure!
  • Remembered Death by Agatha Christie – 4/5 – engaging and twisty with perfect pacing.
  • House of Thieves by Charles Belfoure – 4/5 – excellent writing, really interesting premise, but somehow an emotional disconnect from the main characters.  (PS Belfoure actually tweeted me after this review and I felt awkward because my review wasn’t completely complimentary haha)
  • Freckles by Gene Stratton Porter

    Freckles by Gene Stratton Porter – 4/5 – classic early 1900’s novel with very good good people and very bad bad people, and the bonus of a fabulous setting.

  • The Mother Tongue: English and How It Got That Way by Bill Bryson – 3/5 – an interesting nonfiction read on the history of English.  I will give one caveat since I wrote the original review – I got to reading some reviews on Amazon, and a lot of people seem to think that many of Bryson’s “facts” are actually erroneous, especially as regards his comments on other languages.  So maybe do some research before you decide to pick this one up!

Other June Posts:

20 Books of Summer Update:

20booksfinalSpeaking of the 20 Books of Summer, here is where things stand as of today!  At the last update, I had a slightly modified list from the original (links to GoodReads if I haven’t reviewed the book yet, or my review if I have) –

So far, I have completed six books.  I just started Cursor’s Fury today, so another brick of a book ahead!  Unfortunately, I read about 100 pages of The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August and decided that it just wasn’t for me.  So it is being replaced by The White Flower by Grace Livingston Hill.

Life or Death and Girl of the Limberlost both ended up being kind of meh reads for me (more to come in their eventual reviews), so that kind of bogged down the whole process… I found myself reading bad Pride and Prejudice variations instead, as well as trying to finish The Mother Tongue.  I’m also reading another nonfiction book that isn’t on my list so.  There’s always plenty of good excuses.  ;-)  But I really have been enjoying Butcher’s series, so hopefully this next book is just as engaging, even if it is 675 pages long…

Still a little behind on reviews – three books in the pile – but nothing too crazy.  I’m a smidge behind schedule, but I think I may still be able to pull it off!!!

TBR Update:

For those of you who don’t know, I’m weirdly obsessive with organizing the TBR, and have it on a spreadsheet divided into four different tabs:

  • Stand-Alones:  821 (up THIRTY-FOUR from 787!)
  • Personal (which includes all books I own, but lists any series I own as only one entry…):  584 (up SEVENTEEN from 533! – I really need to stop buying $0.99 books on Kindle)
  • Series (each series counted separately, not each book within a series):  126 (up three from 123)
  • Mystery Series (each series counted separately, not each book within a series):  51 (holding steady)

Good times, good times.  I do not have an addiction.

Awaiting Review:

Only three books right now –

  • Crooked House by Agatha Christie
  • Life or Death by Michael Robotham
  • Girl of the Limberlost by Gene Stratton Porter