books, stats

November Stats

New books read this month: 28*

Books from the to-read pile: 8

Ebooks read: 14

Books from the Library book pile: 2**

Non-fiction books: 0 – but I have one on the go

#ReadHarder categories completed: 0

Most read author: Jill Shalvis

Books read this year: 317

Books bought: 4 (!!!!) 2 actual books and 2 ebooks, one of which is a preorder. Miracles will never cease.

Books on the Goodreads to-read shelf:  (I don’t have copies of all of these!)

*Includes some short stories/novellas/comics (7 this month)

** Some of the figures appear not to add up this month for complicated reasons relating to the Chronicles of St Mary’s collected short stories which I borrowed from the library and had already read some of. Basically it counts for 1 in the library book pile (for the actual physical copy of book), but 4 in the books read count (because that’s how many of the short stories I hadn’t already read) to make it reconcile.

Uh oh. Am I going to do this? Fingers crossed…
books, stats

October Stats

New books read this month: 25*

Books from the to-read pile: 13

Ebooks read: 11

Books from the Library book pile: 0 (although I have a couple on the go)

Non-fiction books: 2

#ReadHarder categories completed: 0

Most read author: Jill Shalvis (two read and a third started)

Books read this year: 262

Books bought: 8 (all ebooks)

Books on the Goodreads to-read shelf: 525 (I don’t have copies of all of these!)

Till eight categories left to cover but only two months to go…

*Includes some short stories/novellas/comics (1 this month)

 

books, stats

September Stats

New books read this month: 26*

Books from the to-read pile: 7

Ebooks read: 16

Books from the Library book pile: 2

Non-fiction books: 4

#ReadHarder categories completed: 1

Most read author: Nick Bryan an Ta-Nehisi Coates (2 each)

Books read this year: 262

Books bought: 6 (all ebooks)

Books on the Goodreads to-read shelf: 529 (I don’t have copies of all of these!)

Eight categories left to cover…

*Includes some short stories/novellas/comics (4 this month)

 

Book of the Week, fiction, literary fiction, reading challenges

Book of the Week: The Mothers

Tricky choice for BotW this week, but I eventually plumped for Britt Bennett’s The Mothers because it was a bit out of my normal reading comfort zone, but wore it very lightly and made me think. 


In aftermath of her mother’s death and in the twilight of her time at high school, Nadia Turner gets involved with the minister’s son. Luke is a couple of years older than she is, but is still adrift after the injury that ended his football career and cost him his college scholarship. It’s nothing serious, just a bit of fun, until Nadia gets pregnant. And what comes next changes the course of both their lives and sends ripples out through their church community that will last for years to come. 

Firstly, I loved the setting of this book. Bennett really brings to life her fictional contemporary black church community in Southern California. Part of the story is told by the elder women in the church as a kind of Greek chorus. It adds an extra perspective in between flipping between the stories of those mostly closely involved. 

It’s also full of interesting characters, even if you don’t always like them that much. Luke and Nadia and her best friend Audrey make a fascinating triangle, who have different views on life and experience the fallout in different ways. 

Now, I can’t say too much more about this or I’ll give too much away, but reading through the reviews of this on goodreads, there are some very definite opinions about the author’s stance with regard to Nadia’s decision. As far as I was concerned, I thought it was handled in a very balanced, matter of fact way and in the main the fall out was portrayed as more down to the cover up and the other issues going on rather than because of the actual decision. Is that cryptic enough?!  Anyway, nearly a week later I’m still thinking about the characters, which has to be a good thing.

This is Bennett’s first novel and was nominated for a whole bunch of prizes, which really didn’t surprise me because it’s clever, well-written and very readable.  This is also a book that fills a couple of this year’s #ReadHarder categories: Debut Novel, book where all the POV characters are people of colour and for me, book set more than 5,000 miles away. 

The hardback is out now, the paperback is coming in October. When that arrives, I think you should be able to find it in most bookshops, but possibly not in the supermarket. As always, if you can’t make it to a bookshop you could order it from a Big Green Bookshop or pick it up on Kindle or Kobo. 

Happy reading. 

books, stats

August Stats

New books read this month: 22*

Books from the to-read pile: 5

Ebooks read: 16

Books from the Library book pile: 1

Non-fiction books: 0 (but I have a couple on the go)

#ReadHarder categories completed: 1

Most read author: Susan Elizabeth Philips (4 in a massive binge)

Books read this year: 236

Books bought: 11 (8 ebooks, 4 books)

Books on the Goodreads to-read shelf: 527 (I don’t have copies of all of these!)

Read Harder Bingo card for August
Only NINE squares to go. And four months to do it in…

*Includes some short stories/novellas/comics (4 this month)

 

Book of the Week, graphic novels

Book of the Week: The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl

Chaos continues. I mean honestly. I have words for my own incompetence in setting my Week in Books as ready to publish without adding my Sunday reading. I’m surprised I’m allowed out alone. Anyway, I hope you all enjoyed your Bank Holiday Monday if you had one. Anyway, on to another (quite brief) BotW.

The digital cover of Unbeatable Squirrel Girl 1
The world needs more Squirrel power…

Doreen Green is off to college. Her first task is to keep her secret identity as Squirrel Girl under wraps.  But that’s easier said than done when you have a tail, your squirrel sidekick has followed you to campus and the world is under threat from all manner of bad guys.

I loved Doreen. She’s feisty, smart and a little bit nutty and she’s going to save the world. I don’t read a lot of super hero comics, but I picked this up as my Super Hero Comic with a Female Lead for the Read Harder Challenge.  I’d heard a lot about it and it totally lived up to the hype. Doreen is the hero (or heroine) we need: she’s Unbeatable because she’s got a solution to everything and it’s often not to beat her enemy to a bloody pulp, but something smart and clever.  Considering that I’d had a stressful week, this really hit the spot for me.

I love stories with strong, smart women at their centre and this ticks all those boxes. My only problem with this – as it is with all graphic novels – is that I read them too fast, and they’re expensive.  But they’re also art, and labour intensive and so I give them a bit of a pass, especially as I really enjoy going into my local comic book store. I think I’ll be passing my copy on to my older niece (she’s 9) because I think she’d love this too.

You can get Unbeatable Squirrel Girl from all the usual places that sell comics, and at time of writing, the Kindle version for a very bargainous £3. I’m not a reader of comics on tablet, but Volume 2 was also super competitively priced, so I’ve got bought it and I’m going to give it a go. I’ll keep you posted. But visit a comic book store.

Happy Reading!

books, stats

July Stats

New books read this month: 32*

Books from the to-read pile: 9

Ebooks read: 18

Books from the Library book pile: 1

Non-fiction books: 3

#ReadHarder categories completed: 0

Most read author: Susan M Boyer (2 Liz Talbot books)

Books read this year: 214

Books bought: 15- all ebooks bar 3

Books on the Goodreads to-read shelf:  534 (I don’t have copies of all of these!)

Read Harder Bingo card
The proper bingo card is back! Hurrah! And I’m more than halfway through the categories! Double Hurrah!

*Includes some short stories/novellas/comics (9 this month)