In accordance to the FTC guidelines, I must state that I make no monetary gains from my reviews or endorsements here on Confessions of a Literary Persuasion. All books I review are either borrowed, purchased by me, given as a gift, won, or received in exchange for my honest review of the book in question.

08 January, 2018

Bout of Books 21 - Reading List & Progress

Bout of Books has started! This year, unlike other years I am working while the read a thon is going on. So my reading will be constrained to my morning commute, my break and evening reading will most likely be listening to the audiobook my husband and I are listening to together.

Reading List (at the start of the read-a-thon):
  • Cold Flat Junction by Martha Grimes - I am starting the read a thon with a book I started last October and then set aside where it got buried under junk on my dining room table
  • The Kingmakers by Clay and Susan Griffith Book 3 in the Vampire Empire series - steampunky vampire series that elengil and I are listening to.
  •  Thirty Million Words Building a Child's Brain by Dana Suskind, MD - Reading for work
Books in Progress:

Introduce Yourself in 6 words challenge:

Geeky, Teacher, Gamer, Wife, Loves Reading. #boutofbooks #insixwords

Reading Progress:

1/8/2018 Day 1:

  • I read about 50 pages of Cold Flat Junction (I forgot to record where I started reading so this is a guesstimate).
1/9/2018 Day 2:
  • I read another 50 pages of Cold Flat Junction, and am now past the halfway mark on the book.
  • I also picked up a graphic novel which I completed reading:
    • Crossing Midnight: Cut Here Vol. 1 by by Mike Carey 
1/10/2018 Day 3:
  • Set down Cold Flat Junction again. The mystery is good. However I'm having a hard time letting the plot grab me.
  • Picked up The Christmas Wish by Nora Robert - have read 287 pages so far.
1/11/2018 Day 4:
  • I finished reading The Christmas Wish this morning. I'm going back to Cold Flat Junction for my commute reading this morning.
  • Today was a trip to the Kohl's Children's museum with the three toddler classrooms. I'm  pooped! no reading got done this evening.
1/12/2018 Day 5:

  •  I forgot to grab my book this morning. My nook was still in my bag from last week. So I started reading The Mapmaker's Children by Sarah McCoy. I was so entranced by it that I was enthralled during my lunch break reading and finished it this evening.
1/13/2018 Day 6:

  • I had a professional development today so spent the day at the Chicago Botanical Gardens. it was sunny but cold! We took a nature walk and found coyote scat and deer tracks in the mud ;P not much physical reading today outside the class, but Elengil and I have spent the evening listening to The Kingmakers by Clay & Susan Griffith. 
1/14/2018 Day 7:

Books Completed:
Finished on 1/12/2018
Finished on 1/11/2018
Finished on 1/9/2018

06 January, 2018

Bout of Books 21

Bout of Books

The 21st round of Bout of Books starts next Monday. I am planning on reading through the week to start a dent in my goal of reading 175 books during 2018.

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, January 8th and runs through Sunday, January 14th 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 21 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team

06 September, 2017

Book Review: A Rotten Person Travels the Caribbean: A Grump in Paradise Discovers that Anyplace it's Legal to Carry a Machete is Comedy Just Waiting to Happen by Gary Buslik

Title:  A Rotten Person Travels the Caribbean: A Grump in Paradise Discovers that Anyplace it's Legal to Carry a Machete is Comedy Just Waiting to Happen
Publisher: Travelers' Tales
Publushed in: 2008

Author Gary Buslik and his wife have been married twenty years. In that time they have traveled to the Caribbean many times for vacations, Add in Buslik's time as a travel writer and he has spent quite a bit of time visiting the Islands that dot this area that many consider paradise. The author considers himself a rotten person, easily turned grumpy, which affects how he sees these islands and the culture clash that occurs between his Midwestern American lifestyle and that lived in the warmer Island climates.

 This book is a collection of travel stories that were originally published elsewhere. So at times there feels a bit of repetition that may have been  avoided by chnging the order of the stories presented. I enjoyed the stories inside. They were written with a black humor and sometimes homesick feeling. The author presents some near brushes with celebrities both unwanted (such as the time he accidently insulted Idi Amin) and wanted (trying to meet Princess Di only to encounter her security and the confusion of a local man who just wanted to get home through a blocked off route). There are stories of crazy and wildly smart Rastifarians, pokes at both the British and the French, as well as musings on how progress is changing island lifestyle.

The author can come across as brusk and a bit of a jerk at times. He is a self proclaimed Republican and Jewish agnostic who is married to a more liberal leaning woman, and who teaches in a very liberal university setting. He loves to weave in observations about growing up in Skokie, IL and his current home in Mundelien, IL and compare them to the islands he has visited.  However you really get a feeling of his appreciation of the islands and the people who host he and his wife during their times staying there. I don't know if this travelogue is for everyone. but I enjoyed it quite a bit, especially his stories about visiting Cuba and visiting Hemingway's home.

28 August, 2017

Bout of Books 20 Day 7 and wrap up!

Bout of Books

Much of the morning and early afternoon were spent playing West of Loathing and relaxing. I did read one more book to it's finish and got started on another that I didn't complete.

Currently Reading:

Cold Flat Junction by Martha Grimes (read 150 pages)
Shadow of Victory by David Webber (listened 2 hours)

Books Finished:

Remember Me? By Sophia Kinsela

Final wrap up:

I ended up reading nine books to finish and got well into 2 others. The audiobook is a long one and I think it will take Elengil and I another week or so to finish if we listen a bit every evening together.

Books Finished:

Pioneers Woman by Ree Drumond
Confessions of a Closet Catholic by 
Marvel graphic novel: Champions, Volume 1 Change the World (reread)
6 Rainier Drive by Debbie McComber 
Home in Seattle: The Playboy and the Widow\Fallen Angel by Debbie McComber
The Kagonesti by Douglas Niles
The Secrets of Cranberry Beach by Ted Murphy 
The Long Secret by Louise Fitzhugh
Remember Me? By Sophia Kinsela

Books read during the Read a thon but not finished: 

Cold Flat Junction by Martha Grimes (read 150 pages)
Shadow of Victory by David Webber (listened to about 8 hours this week)

I'm going to end this with a picture to show the box I was pulling from during this Read a Thon
Day 1: Hopeful, books in my TBR Bookbox #insixwords, #boutofbooks  Day 7: A slightly less full TBR box. #boutofbooks

Though I just took some books off my desk and put them in the box, so it looks full again :/

26 August, 2017

Bout of Books 20 Day 6

Bout of Books

Books in Progress:

Elengil and I listened to another hour of our audiobook Shadows of Victory by David Webber''

Books Finished:

The Long Secret by Louise Fitzhugh

25 August, 2017

Book Reviw: The Kagonesti by Douglas Niles

Title: The Kagonesti
Author: Douglas Niles
Publisher: Random House

Publish Date: 1995

I have a love of the Dragonlance saga. However some of the books are written much better than others. Because I have been disappointed in this series before I have picked up and set down this copy several times without getting past the prologue. I am very glad that I continued with it this time around. The Lost Histories series is a group of books set in the Dragonlance world which probe the historical roots and records the struggles (sometimes epic) of some of the lesser known races of Krynn. This book looks at the Kagonesti - the wild elves. It starts with their founding as a separate people from the more civilized "house" elves. The wild elves with their black hair aand dusky skin still live in the wilderness as the Silvestri led by Silvanos are retreating from the wilderness to live in their crystal cities. Kagonos and his people are beloved of the silver dragon Dalannar who gifts Kaganos with a mystical rams horn which can call his "people" to help them if they are able.

The book is written in three parts. The first shows Kagonos as the first pathfinder and wielder of the mystic horn at the end of the First Dragon War, As he and his people withdraw from the other Elves to retreat deep in the forest of Ashalon.

The second story follows Ashaway as he leads his people during the third dragon war (During the time of Huma). Ashaway has the role of Pathfinder thrust upon himself suddenly when the previous Pathfinder is killed in a raid by the bakali, lizardmen who serve the dragon queen. Ashaway has to find safety for his people while helping the Knights of the Rose travel through the deep forests and mountains to the Dragon Queen's stronghold of Sanction. Even as helping the humans goes against the traditions of the Kagonesti, Ashaway is urged to help the Solamnic knights by the current silver dragon who carries the match to the hown he carries.

The third and final story of the Kagonesti elves takes us to the years before the cataclysm. We see the struggles of young warrior Iydahoe as he witnesses the destruction of the four tribes of the Kagonesti. He and his father struggle to keep their small band of survivors hidden and alive as the Humans from the city of Ishtar and the Silvenesti build a massive road through the forest homes of the Kagonesti tribe. Iydahoe seeks vengeance upon the men who killed his people. A raid on a caravan leads the capture of himself and a young warrior under his care. They are in the caravan wagon of a cleric of Mishakal when the cleric is pulled away by magic - a signal that the thirteen days before the end of the world is to arrive. Iydahoe and his tribesman escape with the help of a priestess Vanisia and return to his tribe. They are led to go up into the mountains by the mystic Grandfather Ram and are saved from the water that rushes in and destroys Ishtar and created the Newsea as the Cataclysm breaks the world of Ansalon.

I really enjoyed how this fills in some of the history to events before the cataclysm.

Bout of Books 20 Day 5

Bout of Books

Starting a new book from the box under my desk. This has been on my bookcrossing TBR pile since 2015 but may have been in my TBR pile since 2014. 

Currently Reading:

The Long Secret by Louise Fitzhugh

Books Finished:

The Kagonesti by Douglas Niles
The Secrets of Cranberry Beach by Ted Murphy 

24 August, 2017

Bout of Books 20 Day 4

Bout of Books

Today has been some reading but I watched way too much Dr. who. I'm just a small ways into the season with Martha Jones as his companion and I am very much enjoying the show. 

Finished Reading:

Home in Seattle by Debbie Macomber (Read pages 116 - 490)