Hour Zero: Welcome to #24in48, the July ’17 Edition

1. Where in the world are you reading from this weekend?
I’ll be reading from home in Tucson, Arizona, U.S.A. πŸ™‚

2. Have you done the 24in48 readathon before?
Yes! I’ve participated in at least three, I think, and possibly more!

3. Where did you hear about the readathon, if it is your first?
This isn’t my first, and I can’t remember how I learned about #24in48, but it was probably thanks to a book blogger/other readathon. πŸ™‚

4. What book are you most excited about reading this weekend?
I am MOST excited to continue the Sin du Jour series by Matt Wallace! Books 3 and 4 – Pride’s Spell and Idle Ingredients – are on my TBR for this ‘thon. πŸ™‚

5. Tell us something about yourself.
The January 2017 #24in48 was the first where I actually read for the full 24 hours! I am very much hoping to be able to again reach 24 hours this time around. πŸ™‚

6. Remind us where to find you online this weekend.
I’ll be blogging on my new book blog (!!!): https://reader44ever.wordpress.com
I’ll be tweeting at https://twitter.com/reader44ever
I’ll be instagramming on https://www.instagram.com/reader44ever
And I’ll hopefully be sharing on Tumblr, too: http://reader44ever.tumblr.com

πŸ™‚

24 in 48 Readathon

Wheeee! It’s time!! Let’s do this thing!

Welcome to the July 2017 edition of #24in48! Right now, it’s midnight ET on the official readathon clock, but we’re kicking things off with a bang. If you’re just now discovering the β€˜thon or have been unsure of your weekend plans, you can still sign up and do so throughout the weekend.

A few notes as we get started:

  • Lots of helpful information on tracking your time and other tips for readathon success can be found here. You’ll want those tips, I promise.
  • Speaking of tracking, if you’re planning on reading a full 24 hours (or even just trying to get close), make sure you track your time. You can do this a number of ways but the preferred method is with a stopwatch on your phone or computer or the Bookout app for iOS devices. If you finish 24 hours of…

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My TBR for July 2017’s #24in48 Readathon!

Hello! The next #24in48 Readathon starts TONIGHT! It runs from midnight on July 22nd through 11:59p on July 23rd. (It’s not too late to sign-up!)

My TBR for #24in48 !

Jen's TBR for 24in48

The above photo shows the books I hope to read – or at least make a dent in – over this two-day readathon. The books shown include “books” on top and graphic novels on the bottom. (And my Max is investigating/kissing them! πŸ™‚ )

From top to bottom, all of the books (links will take you to the books’ descriptions on Goodreads) are. . .

I doubt I’ll be able to read this whole stack – all 12 – but I’m hoping to read at least half of these books! I think at least two, and hopefully three, of the “books” plus three of the graphic novels should be doable. But I’ll have to see how much “social stuff” I do, which might mean that I listen to Miniatures: The Very Short Fiction of John Scalzi, by John Scalzi and narrated by a “full cast,” for the 15th (and 16th, 17th, 18th. . .) time. πŸ˜‰

The six books I’m most hoping to read include. . .

Wish me luck? πŸ˜‰

2017 Mid-Year Reading Goals Check-In

Hi! Yesterday I saw a new video from Rincey Reads on YouTube about “2017 Mid-Year Goals Check In” and thought I would try to do a written post about my own Mid-Year Goals Check-In. πŸ™‚

But before I check-in on my reading goals, I should probably share my 2017 Reading Goals. πŸ˜‰
(Please note that right-clicking to view any image will show you a larger, more easily “read,” version of it.)

My Five 2017 Reading Goals

  1. On Goodreads, for the past several years I have set a goal to read 200 books a year. I set this same goal for 2017, though I am hoping to read more. (In 2016, I read around 205, so I am hoping to read 250 in 2017, but I left it at 200 books to start with. I’ll bump it up to 250 IF I get close to 250. πŸ˜‰ )
  2. In 2016, I read six or seven series – from beginning to latest (or last) book! – that I own, but hadn’t read completely. So in 2017, I also decided that I need to read at least six series. What series, you ask? I’ll tell you. . . (Please note that all book counts were as of January 1, 2017; any 2017 releases were/are to be purchased and read after their releases.) Here is a picture of all of them:
    Jen's Owned Series to Read in 2017

    • Otherworld/Sisters of the Moon series by Yasmine Galenorn (18 books);
    • Elemental Assassin series by Jennifer Estep (15 books);
    • Dresden Files series by Jim Butcher (15 books);
    • Thursday Next series by Jasper Fforde (7 books);
    • Guardians Trilogy by Nora Roberts (3 books); and
    • Soulwood series by Faith Hunter (2 books)
  3. I wanted to do better in the 2017 edition of Book Riot’s Read Harder Challenge. I didn’t finish 2016’s. 😦 I am hoping to finish 2017’s (I finished 2015’s). πŸ™‚
  4. I also wanted to do a better job at staying current with any challenges I did in my groups on Goodreads.com. (In addition to the Book Riot group, I’m also in the Nothing But Reading Challenges group and three Paranormal/Urban-Fantasy groups that do monthly and semi-annual challenges.) I had slacked on keeping track of challenges (and my reading for them) after my father’s death in 2014. I hoped to get back on track in 2017.
  5. I planned to participate in each of the 2017 Readathons for the Dewey’s 24-Hour #Readathon (April and October), the #24in48 Readathon (January and July), and the #BoutofBooks Readathon (January, May, and August).

So those were my Five Reading Goals for 2017! Now, how am I doing now that we’re past the halfway point of the year?

Mid-Year 2017 Reading Goal Check-In!

    Jen's 2017 Progress Toward 200 Books Read

  1. As of July 15, I have read 138 of 200 books and am 31 books ahead of schedule! (Please note that the 138 includes a few short stories and children’s picture books. It includes anything that has an individual page on Goodreads. But they count, too!!! πŸ™‚ )
  2. So far as reading series I own goes, progress has been slow.
    • I’ve only managed to complete the 18 books in the Otherworld/Sisters of the Moon series by Yasmine Galenorn, which I started in January and finished in June. (I read more than just this series during this time.)
    • I have also finished the first four books and assorted short stories in the Elemental Assassin series (now 16 books long). I’m reading this series with buddies in one of my Goodreads groups. We have a schedule and are reading two every two weeks (books one and two starting June 19, books three and four starting July 3, books five and six starting July 17, and so on through books 15 and 16 starting September 25). So far, I am reading them per this schedule!
    • In the Dresden Files, I’ve read the first five books (out of 15).
    • I haven’t yet started on the other three series (Thursday Next, Guardians Trilogy, or Soulwood).
    • For the Soulwood series, I am planning to start it around when book three comes out in early December 2017. πŸ™‚
  3. I am making excellent progress toward completion of the 2017 Book Riot Read Harder Challenge. I’ve completed 19 of the 24 tasks! I’m on track to finish this challenge in the next month or two, especially as I have four of the last five books I need on hold at my library. πŸ™‚
  4. Regarding keeping current in other challenges, I don’t know that I did all that well with this in the first half of the year, since the first time I can remember updating was in June. But I’m hoping to do better from “this point” onward.
  5. Readathons: Thus far, we have had one #24in48 Readathon, two #BoutofBooks Readathons, and one Dewey’s 24-Hour #Readathon.
    • January’s #24in48 Readathon went very well for me. I managed to read for 24 hours in the 48! πŸ™‚
      Jen's 24-Hours Read in January's 24in48 Readathon
    • January’s and May’s #BoutofBooks Readathons were disappointments for me. I spent too much time on “distractions” and not enough on reading. I am hoping that August’s will be much better. (I’d like to read at least seven books in seven days!) Here is a summary of the first two #BoutofBooks Readathons we’ve had in 2017:
      Jen's BoutofBooks 18 and 19 Acccomplishments
    • In the April outing of the Dewey’s 24-Hour #Readathon, I spent too much time on social stuff and, once again, not enough on reading. I only managed to read just over half of one print book! (Silence Fallen by Patricia Briggs was the book; I made it to page 208 of 364.) Of course, I also listened to over 12 hours of audiobooks, but still. . . I was disappointed. (I listened to The Chimes by Charles Dickens once and Miniatures: The Very Short Fiction of John Scalzi, by John Scalzi, three times! [I listened to Miniatures twice during the May #BoutofBooks Readathon. πŸ™‚ ]) Here is a picture of the books I read for the April 24-Hour #Readathon:
      Jen's Books Read during the April 2017 Dewey's 24-Hour Readathon
  6. And that’s it for my 2017 Reading Goals Halfway Point Check-In!

    I hope you enjoyed reading this post. It was fun figuring out where I am in my goals, but realizing that I have a long way to go for some of them (#2, I’m looking at you!) is daunting! πŸ™‚

Hi! My name is. . . + Best Books: 1st Half of 2017!

Hello there! I’m Jen, also known as reader44ever, and this is my new blog! I’m not sure how active I’ll be, or even what I’ll share, but I wouldΒ like to share things about the books I read/am reading/read.

Before we get started, as I said, my name is Jen. I am disabled by mental health issues (depression; three forms of severe anxiety), and I also have a few physical health issues (osteoarthritis; carpal tunnel; De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis). I live in Tucson, Arizona, with my mother and my puppy-son, Max. Max is also my service dog! πŸ™‚

Here is a “recent” picture of me and Max, taken after Christmas of 2013:
Jenni with Max, Christmas 2013

And now to get started, since we’re still about halfway through 2017, I’ll share the best books I read in the first half of 2017! January 1 through June 30! (All covers are from Goodreads and, if you click the link on the covers, you’ll be taken to my reviews on Goodreads. You do not have to be member to see my reviews.) πŸ™‚

    Magic Binds by Ilona Andrews - My Review

  1. My very first book of the year (January 1-2) was a reread: Magic Binds (Kate Daniels #9) by Ilona Andrews. (I had first read it in December of 2016.) And it was W-O-N-D-E-R-F-U-L. I laughed, I cried, and that ending! Oh! This book destroys me! I LOVE it. (This is the only reread I will include in this list. Since I read it for the first and second time so close to one another, just over three weeks apart, I think it’s okay to include this reread.) Also, yes, I do laugh and cry in pretty much the same places every time I read/reread any book in the Kate Daniels series. πŸ™‚
  2.  

    When All the Girls Have Gone by Jayne Ann Krentz - My Review

  3. MyΒ secondΒ “best book of 2017 so far” was an entry by my most favorite author: specifically, When All the Girls Have Gone by Jayne Ann Krentz. (It was also the second book I read in 2017, January 2-4.) I loved this book! Charlotte and Max, our protagonists, were just delightful (singly and together). This book opened with a murder, and how things connect in this story was really great and fun to read. πŸ™‚
  4.  

    Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers - My Review

  5. I read Grave Mercy in February (18-19) and it was really a wonderful story. Ismae was a great protagonist, very mature for her age (about 17). I love reading about mature teenagers, because I was one. πŸ™‚ Duval as Ismae’s love interest was also delightful. They make an excellent pair. And though this book was long (549 pages), I never once felt like it was too long. It was such a fun read! (Sadly, I read book two in this series – the His Fair Assassin series – in June and it was not nearly as good for me.)
  6.  

    Because I'm Watching by Christina Dodd - My Review

  7. Because I’m Watching is the third book in Christina Dodd’s Virtue Falls series. I read it first, though (on March 18). I subsequently read book one, Virtue Falls, but didn’t love it as much as I did the third book. Because I’m Watching was the story of Maddie and Jacob, and it was tense, chilling, scary, and overall just delightful! I laughed; I cried. It was wonderful! I really love this story. πŸ™‚
  8.  

    Miniatures: The Very Short Fiction of John Scalzi by John Scalzi - My Review

  9. I have so much love for this audiobook. (The print – I have it on my Kindle – edition is also fun, but the audio! Oh! The audio!) Miniatures: The Very Short Fiction of John Scalzi is read by “a full cast” and the casting choices were positively inspired. I laugh out loud at sooo many lines in this book. It is really just fantastic. And I’ve listened to it fourteen times (!!!) including my first listen on April 1, so when I have lines playing in my head (as they do, don’t you know), I hear the performers who performed the lines in the audiobook doing voiceovers in my head. πŸ™‚
  10.  

    Shadow Rising by Yasmine Galenorn - My Review

  11. Shadow Rising is book twelve in Yasmine Galenorn’s Otherworld/Sisters of the Moon series. It is also my favorite book in the series so far (I’ve read the first 18 of 21 books). I love everything about this book, from the cover (Seattle! Oh, how I miss you!) to the minutest details of the story, it is a wonderful book. I read it May 12-14. In this outing with the D’Artigo sisters – Camille, witch; Delilah, werecat; and Menolly, vampire – we got to finally learn more about Shade, Delilah’s partner. (!!!) While I wish we had received details about him in a Delilah book (#s 2,5,8,11,14,17), I suppose the situations in Shadow Rising were finally suitable for sharing. (This book is a Menolly book, meaning Menolly is the protagonist. She is protag. in book #s 3,6,9,12,15,18.) And what situations they were! πŸ™‚
  12.  

    Priestess Dreaming by Yasmine Galenorn - My Review

  13. After a chaotic beginning, Priestess Dreaming (book 16 in the Otherworld/Sisters of the Moon series by Yasmine Galenorn; read June 3) took off strong and never gave up. Everything that happened in this story – and there was A LOT going on! – was fantastic, and fantastical. πŸ˜‰ And when I realized that in the whole of the story, bad-guy-demons and spirit seals never played a role? Well, I was astonished! After all, the overarching arc to this series is the threat from the bad-guy-demons and the sisters’ hunt for the spirit seals. But did I miss them in this book? No sirree, I did not. πŸ™‚
  14.  

    Death Masks by Jim Butcher - My Review

  15. Death Masks is book #5 in the Dresden Files by Jim Butcher. And so far, it is my favorite entry in this series.Β (I read it June 18-19.) There was so much going on in here; we had two storylines! The main storyline involved Denarians (fallen angels) and the Shroud of Turin; the secondary storyline involved a “Red Court champion” who was in Chicago to duel with Harry over events in an earlier book. Both of these storylines were full of exciting things. Overall, this was quite a thrilling book to read. I really loved it. πŸ™‚
  16.  

    Poison by Jennifer Estep - My Review

  17. Poison is a short story in the Elemental Assassin series by Jennifer Estep. (I read it on June 21.) Out of all the shorts that I’ve read so far (I’m through book four, and have read all of the shorts that fall before book one through book four), this one is my favorite. Told from Finnegan Lane’s point-of-view, it gives us a glimpse of Gin (Gin Blanco, main protag. in the series and Finn’s foster sister) when she was 13, newly a member of the Lane household. I loved this story, it made me cry. πŸ™‚
  18. And that’s it for those new-to-me books that I gave five stars to in the first six months of 2017.

    If I were to add in all of the books I read and gave five stars to, including all of the books that are rereads, that would make this list 17 books long. I honestly didn’t want to type that much, so I’ll just share covers. As with the covers above, all are from Goodreads and if you click on them, you’ll head over to my review of the book you clicked on. (Again, you do not have to be a member of Goodreads to see my reviews.) Most of these rereads were first read years ago, but there is at least one exception. That exception should stand out to you, since my first reading of it was shared up above. πŸ˜‰

     

    Annie's Day by Andy Weir - My Review

  19. Annie’s Day by Andy Weir. Read for the 3rd time on January 9.
  20.  

    The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman - My Review

  21. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman. “Read” (listened) for the 2nd time April 10-11.
  22.  

    Miniatures: The Very Short Fiction of John Scalzi by John Scalzi - My Review

  23. Miniatures: The Very Short Fiction of John Scalzi by John Scalzi. Read for 1st time in print (along with 6th audio listen) on April 13.
  24.  

    Fool Moon by Jim Butcher - My Review

  25. Fool Moon by Jim Butcher. Read for the 2nd time (1st was via Kindle) May 23-25.
  26.  

    Spider's Bite by Jennifer Estep - My Review

  27. Spider’s Bite by Jennifer Estep. Read for the 2nd time on June 19.
  28.  

    Web of Lies by Jennifer Estep - My Review

  29. Web of Lies by Jennifer Estep. Read for the 2nd time on June 20.
  30.  

    All Night Long by Jayne Ann Krentz - My Review

  31. All Night Long by Jayne Ann Krentz. Read for at least the 7th time on June 23.
  32.  

    Falling Awake by Jayne Ann Krentz - My Review

  33. Falling Awake by Jayne Ann Krentz. Read for at least the 13th time on June 30.

 

Well, that’s now it for this, my first ever blog post! I hope you enjoyed seeing and reading a little about those books that I found worthy of five stars in the first half of 2017. I think for future, I will try to share other five-star reads. That seems like a blog-worthy goal. (I might also share reviews for any books I rate poorly, as “rant reviews” can be fun. πŸ™‚ But I’ll only do that going forward from here.)

 

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