Bout of Books 26

Yay! It is Bout of Books time. I love this readathon because it lasts a whole week and it is zero pressure. What exactly is Bout of Books?

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda Shofner and Kelly Rubidoux Apple. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, August 19th and runs through Sunday, August 25th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, Twitter chats, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 26 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team

I started working full time at the library in the middle of May so I no longer have my mornings free to read during the week. So I definitely won’t get as much reading done this week as I have in prior years. My goal is just to take the time to read more when I get home from work. I have been so tired that I have not always had the energy to read. So I am looking forward to that. As always I will keep this post updated as I go.

This is what I plan to read this week. I doubt I will finish all of them even though I am halfway through A Dream So Dark and I have already started Journey to the Center of the Earth. I am looking forward to reading Wicked Saints. I have heard so many good things about it and I bought it on Independent Bookstore Day in Nashville earlier this year and it’s one I have been saving. I am looking forward to reading the second Belles book too. I didn’t love the first one but the world building was so good so hoping this second one works better for me.



Today was a good reading day. I was able to listen to my audiobook a little bit throughout the day. During lunch I had to edit some theatre photos so I listened to it while editing. Jules Verne is one of my favorite authors. I grew up loving his stories. I am really enjoying listening to this version of Journey to the Center of the Earth which is narrated by Tim Curry. It is excellent!


I finished my first book: A Dream So Dark by L.L. McKinney. I was lukewarm about the first book in this series. But this one hit the ball out of the park. It had everything I love in a fantasy: Adventure, intrigue, imposters, magic, darkness, lightness, magical lands, kick ass women, magical food, healing and magical creatures. Loved it!


Headed to bed now and hoping I can get more reading in tomorrow even though it is super busy day.

Monday Numbers

Pages read: 224

Audiobook Time: 4 hours 11 minutes

Books finished: 1 


Today was a super busy day at work and I had a headache so I didn’t have much chance to read a physical book but I had some good audiobook time. I finished Journey to the Center of the Earth. I highly recommend that Audible book. It was really good! After I finished that I started the Treasure Island audiobook.

I am also reading the second Belles book, Everlasting Rose. I am really detesting one of the characters and it is ruining the book a little bit.


Tuesday Numbers

Pages read: 108

Audiobook Time: 6 hours 32 minutes

Books finished: 1 


Well today was an interesting day. I worked until 12 and then had to come home because I felt so terrible. I slept for a few hours and then had to photograph a show at the theatre tonight. I am exhausted. I am still trying to get used to my new schedule three months in. I need more sleep.

I finished the Treasure Island Audible book. It was very good. It was more of a drama than a reading of the book. It was so good.

I also finished The Everlasting Rose. I really don’t like any of the characters in that book and I don’t think I will read any more of them. It was hard to get through.


I started the audiobook of Dying of Whiteness: How the Politics of Racial Resentment Is Killing America’s Heartland by Jonathan M. Metzl. It is depressing and enraging but I highly suggest people reading it.


That one is a pretty heavy book so I also started my favorite new Audible book, The Anne of Green Gables Collection. It was only one credit and it’s all the Anne book! What a deal. I am enjoying listening to the first book and it’s a good book to fall asleep to.


Wednesday Numbers

Pages read: 174

Audiobook Time: 5 hours 38 minutes

Books finished: 2


Today was a busy day! I worked all day and now I must go to bed early because I am so tired. Thank goodness for audiobooks!

I was so excited to get an advanced copy of The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern. I can’t believe it has been eight years since The Night Circus came out. I love that book so much. I am only 50 or so pages in to this new one and it is so good. I am hoping it holds up all the way though.

Pages read: 55

Audiobook Time: 4 hours 48 minutes

Books finished: 0


Today was another busy day at work but tonight I was able to get a little reading in after dinner with my husband. I still have a lingering headache so it was mostly audio today. I didn’t finish or start any books today. Looking forward to having all day Saturday and Sunday to relax and read.

Pages read: 50

Audiobook Time: 3 hours 55 minutes

Books finished: 0


Well today was a glorious, relaxing day! It was exactly what I needed. I read and hung out with my dog and edited photos while listening to audiobooks. It was great.


I also watched a rom com movie with Scott Michael Foster who I adore. But it was about a wedding photographer and I kept yelling at the TV you are missing the shot. Seriously this photographer missed so many important shots. That’s why you can’t watch media about the job you have. All you see are the inaccuracies. I didn’t finish any books but I did start a new book, Maybe This Time by Kasie West that I impulsively bought. I almost finished the whole thing in a few hours. Such a delightful YA book. I can always justify my book purchases now by saying I will donate them to my library collection after I am done. I swear I have improved our YA collection so much by doing this. I finally finished editing a big photo session I have been working on for awhile and I am so happy. I also took a book break and watched some Jane the Virgin. I can’t believe I only have ten episodes of this show left. So sad. I am looking forward to tomorrow as I have nothing planned!


Pages read: 301

Audiobook Time: 3 hours 15 minutes

Books finished: 0

Bout of Books 20 August 2017

It is finally the week of Bout of Books 20! I am so excited.

"The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda Shofner and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, August 21st and runs through Sunday, August 27th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 20 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog." - From the Bout of Books team.

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is one of my favorites because it lasts a whole week. And no surprise my week is packed with work and after work activities. So I don't know how much time I can make for reading but I will get in as much as possible. 

My goal is to finish up the books I am currently reading which are the following:

The Lying Game by Ruth Ware

Devil's Bargain by Joshua Green

Before I Let Go by Marieke Nijkamp

When Paris Went Dark: The City of Lights Under German Occupation, 1940-1944 by Ronald C. Rosbottom

I am also reading A Feast for Crows by George R.R. Martin but I doubt I will have time to finish it as I am "only" 400 pages in.

Well I am going to get to reading before I have to head to work for eclipse madness!


Well thank goodness for audiobooks is all I have to say. I didn't have a terrific reading day. Work was insane. We were getting phone call for eclipse glasses every 30 seconds before the eclipse started. The good news is I got to see the eclipse. It was so amazing! I definitely am going to plan a trip in the path of totality for the next one.

I mostly read my Game of Thrones book and listened to my audiobook but I hope to get more into the Lying Game tomorrow. It's a fascinating story so far and I am looking forward to finding out what really went on. It has been a long day and I have to be up super early tomorrow as I have a photo session an hour away. Better luck tomorrow!


Monday Numbers:

Pages read: 160

Audiobook Time: 3 hours

Books finished: 0


Helloooo Tuesday! Today was an insanely crazy day. I was in my car most of the morning, driving to a photo session and then running all these long overdue errands. I worked at my second job at the library all afternoon so I only got some reading in before bed. But the good thing about being in the car all day is that you have plenty of time to listen to audiobooks!

I finished listening to When Paris Went Dark. I don't know if loved it is the right word considering the subject matter. But this book was really informative and had a good narrative flow. Books about the Nazis are extra chilling these days.


I also finished Before I Let Go. I loved the first half of the book. This was a haunting tale of a girl trying to figure out how and why her best friend died. The pain and grief of Corey was palpable in the pages. And then suddenly the book turned confusing and disjointed. It kind of turned out to be nothing? I was really confused by the resolution of the story. I also didn't like the phone call scenes. They really took away from the flow of the book and didn't really add much (FYI I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review).


I also am reading a book at work called Inside, Outside, and Online: Building Your Library Community. It's very heavy on research and stats. I am trying to read more about the Library world and how it works so this is very helpful. 

Tuesday Numbers  

Pages Read: 330

Audiobook Time: 5 hours 50 minutes

Books Finished: 2


Another subpar day. This just wasn't the best week for me in terms of being able to read. My time is so crunched this week. I think this Bout of Books will just be all about audiobooks. I had work and then had to photograph a really long play so I didn't get much actual reading done. I mainly just was able to finish reading The Lying Game before work. I really loved it! It was just the right amount of suspense and mystery. 


I would say I am hoping for a better reading day tomorrow but I have to take my MIL to the dr. tomorrow and it will probably take up all my time before work. Sunday is the only day this week I will have to read all day so I am looking forward to it.

Wednesday Numbers

Pages Read: 256

Audiobook Time: 3 hours 8 minutes

Books Finished: 1


Nope. Just a wash. Better luck tomorrow or the weekend.

Thursday Numbers

Pages Read: 169

Audiobook Time: 3 hours 56 minutes

Books Finished: 1


OMG its finally Friday! So happy. It has been a long, long week! I feel like the eclipse threw everything off. I am hoping to catch up on sleep and reading this weekend. I didn't get much of a chance to read again today as Friday is one of my long work days. I am sad about my lack of reading time this week. I do miss being able to take time off during read-a-thons but I am so thankful to have found a part time job I love. So it's ok if I wasn't able to read as much as usual. I am happy I am able to read at all!

Friday Numbers

Pages Read: 82

Audiobook Time: 21 minutes

Books Finished: 0


Yay finally a decadent reading day and I spent hours at my Grandmas today and still got some good reading in.

I finished Small Admissions. It was quite disappointing. I saw so many good reviews about it. It just reminded me of the usual different girls in the city books. I wasn't that attached to the people in the book and I probably only finished it because it was a readathon.

I was so excited to get an ARC of Andy Weir's new book, Artemis. I started it tonight and it is SO good. It definitely kept me up later than usual. I forced myself to go to bed. When I got Martian I started reading it at 6 pm and I stayed up all night until I was done. I love that this book has a female protagonist. 

Well tomorrow should be a good reading day although I am also hoping to spend some time with my husband too!

Saturday Numbers

Pages Read: 355

Audiobook Time: 38 minutes

Books Finished: 1


Well this was definitely the best reading day of the whole week. I finally just got to real and enjoy reading.

I finished Artemis. I really enjoyed this book. I don't think it's always easy for a male to write a female MC and there were a few instances where I thought that missed a little. But I thought this book was so fun. I liked Jazz and her cast of characters. Like The Martian my eyes would glaze over at the hard core science stuff. This book reminded me of an old fashioned heist movie even though they weren't heisting anything!


I also was excited to get am ARC of Brazen: Rebel Ladies Who Rocked the World. This book is awesome! Its a graphic novel packed full of beautiful illustrations and text about awesome ladies from history that you don't usually hear about. It is SO good. 

I started Moonglow too because I have five days to read it before it has to go back to the library.

Sunday Numbers

Pages Read: 522

Audiobook Time: 3 hours 7 minutes

Books Finished: 1

Wrap up!

Well this was not one of the best Bout of Books I have ever done. I just didn't have the time I usually did. But I still did decent. It was a long and exhausting week and I was glad the little pockets of time I was able to escape and read.

Total Numbers

Pages Read: 1,874

Audiobook Time: 20 hours

Books Finished: 6


2014 Reading Updates

Oh blog how I have neglected you! I have actually read more books this year than I have in years previous. I have read so much plus been busy with work and life that I haven't updated my blog since January. I have decided to commit to writing in this blog at least once a month. We shall see what happens. I used to write all the time but my skills have really become rusty.

Anyway on to an update of what I have been reading this year and how my book challenges are going. First, I have been religious about using Goodreads to track all my books this year. I have been on Goodreads since 2010 but only used it sporadically. This year, I took some time and set up shelves which has made tracking books I have read so much easier. Also, it has been super helpful if I want to read the next book in a series but don't quite remember which one I read last.

Another goal I had this year was to spend less money on books and check out more books from the library. I have always felt a little guilty about checking out books instead of buying them until I read an author (sorry I can't remember who) who tweeted about libraries. She said the more books are checked out the better chance librarians have of getting books out to people and that it is good for authors. That was all I needed to hear! This year 74% of the books I read have been checked out from the library. Oh yeah did I mention that because of Goodreads I am going to share lots of statistics and numbers with you? One of my favorite things about my library is that when you check out books at the bottom of the receipt it tells you what you have saved by borrowing instead of buying. How much do I love this? I feel like I have earned a bunch of extra money although I haven't.  Here are just a few of the receipts I have from this year.

Another good thing to come from going to the library so often is that I have started volunteering there. My library is very special as I have been going to the same one since 1989. I always wanted to work there growing up so volunteering is second best!

I decided to only do two challenges this year. The first one is the What's In A Name 7 challenge. I have read a book in four of the five categories. Here they are--

A position of royalty
The Kings and Queens of Roam: A Novel by Daniel Wallace. This book is by the author of Big Fish which I absolutely loved. This book wasn't as good but I still enjoyed it. I love the darkness of Wallace's writing in this book. It often takes a grim turn but I really liked the magical elements.   

A number written in letters: Thirteen Reasons Why  by Jay Asher. This book was so good. It was very sad and heart wrenching but I couldn't put it down. Sometimes when I read a book like this where there is a sad tragedy I wish that the ending could change and they would miraculously be alive. Definitely check this book out but only when you are in the mood for a sad read.

A forename or names: The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks
by E. Lockhart. I LOVED this book. Give me a book about boarding school and a 16 year old semi criminal in training and you have me hooked. Seriously I have read so many boarding school books this year (8) that I made a whole Goodreads shelf. This book is funny and I love E. Lockhart's writing. I really want to check out more of her books after reading this one. 

A type of element or weather: Monsoon Summer
by Mitali Perkins.  Ok I am not ashamed to admit I adore young adult books. Just because books are written for 15 & 16 year olds etc doesn't mean they can't be enjoyed by adults. Let's be honest I am 32 years old but I still think I am 16 sometimes because of the books, movies and TV shows I enjoy. Some of the best books I have read this year are young adult books. In fact, 36% of the books I have read this year are young adult books. Monsoon Summer was an excellent book. I love how Jazz is a teenage entrepreneur.  I wish I had started my own business at fifteen. The description of the food in this book makes me want Indian food right now. I can't wait to read more of Mitali Perkins books.

The second challenge I am doing this year is Jon Acuff's Empty Shelf challenge. I credit this challenge with making me read more books this year than I have in a long time. I have always been a big reader but the past few years it has fallen away due to working hard on my business. I have made it a priority this year to read as many books as I can. I also participate in Jon Acuff's 30 Days of Hustle and one of my hustles a few months ago was to read a book a week. I was excited to reach that goal. I think reading is really important in keeping your mind in shape and taking some time for yourself.  Reading relaxes me and I love to get swept away into other worlds, times and places. Check out my shelf on Goodreads to see all the books I have read for the Empty Shelf challenge. I have read one hundred twenty-six books for the challenge. I just want to highlight four of my favorite books I have read for this challenge.

To Kill a Mockingbird
by Harper Lee. Here is the biggest shame of my reading life: I just read this book for the first time earlier this month. This book definitely lived up to the hype. Wow, it was so good. I could barely put it down. It broke my heart,  encouraged me, made me happy and sad. So, so good. I understand now why this is called one of the best books ever. 

Tell the Wolves I'm Home: A Novel
by Carol Rifka Brunt. This book brought me to tears several times. It is such a beautiful but sad story. It was full of emotion and complex feelings. It was one of those books where after I finished it I had to sit quietly and just absorb it. If there is any book you read in 2014, I recommend this one. 

Tell the Wolves I'm Home: A Novel
by Clint Hill. This book was really thorough on the five days surrounding the JFK assassination. It was written by Jackie Kenendy's Secret Service man. He was the one who crawled on the trunk to get to her after the shots. It was very well written and detailed and the personal account from someone so close to the terrible tragedy was very moving to read. There are also lots of photos in this book.

by Robert Galbraith. I started this book with a dose of skepticism. I had heard that many people didn't like the book. I also tried to forget that JK Rowling was actually the author. I ended up absolutely loving it! I enjoyed the flawed Cormoran Strike and although the murder plot wasn't the most brilliant the book was fast paced and exciting. I read it in just a few days. I have the second book on hold at the library (60 people in front of me yikes) and I can't wait to read it.

I promise I will be better about updating my blog for the latter half of 2014. I am always looking for new amazing books to read so please tell me the top four books you have read this year in the comments. Looking forward to adding to my to be read shelf

Please note that Susan's Reading Adventure is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to However I will never post content on any book or product that I don’t love.