Monday, February 18, 2013

It's Monday, and I Read Some Stuff!

Hosted by the ever-awesome Sheila of Book Journey.
Good day, lovelies! How was your weekend???

Mine was super-fab. David came up on Thursday evening and TOTALLY surprised me with an awesome home-cooked meal of chicken-fried steak, gravy, scalloped potatoes, hoppin' John (black-eyed peas, tomatoes, peppers), and a BEAUTIFUL cherry almond cake with his grandmother's hot fudge sauce. He also threw in roses, chocolate covered strawberries, and good hugs because he is a Valentine's Day god.

We had a fun, laid back weekend. We saw a horrible movie (Beautiful Creatures), drank some margaritas, and attended a birthday BBQ. Fun fun fun!

I've also done a spot of reading over the past week -- and you all know that's been in short supply. I'm feeling more of an urge and more of an acceptance that I may have to start and ditch several titles before something "sticks."

First I finished up Caitlin Moran's How to Be a Woman while I was stuck at the car dealership getting a new battery and some recalls fixed. It's amazing what unadulterated free time AWAY from home can incite one to do! It wasn't at all hard to sink into a book when I was staring at a bunch of strangers and creepy salespeople.

You can expect a full review of this one coming up soon.

I'm currently reading from a short story collection called Corsets & Clockwork: 13 Steampunk Romances edited by Trisha Telep. I started it sometime last year, read a few stories, and it wasn't striking the right note with me, so I laid it aside. When I was having trouble choosing a new book recently, I decided some stories might just do the trick to shake up my reading. I was right, and I'm enjoying it much more this time. I'm dipping in and out of it before bedtime, and during daily downtime.

I just finished a story I liked a lot called "Code of Blood" by Dru Pagliassotti. It's set in Venice and is a retelling or a steampunk take-off of a Napoleonic invasion of the city. While I'm not an expert on the time period by any stretch of the imagination, I did enjoy this story of a brave young heroine set on saving her home and family from invaders. That just never gets old, right? And of course, there was romance. I find the romance portion of this collection the weakest part of it and think I might've enjoyed some more straightforward -- sometimes romanceless -- steampunk instead. But whatever. I can overlook it when the romance is underdeveloped or cheesy;  I'm really more interested in the atmosphere and the twists on more traditional tales.

Next up...and y'all are gonna think I'm CRAZY. And I just might be.


Trish of Love, Laughter and a Touch of Insanity along with Melissa of Avid Reader's Musings (link below)  are hosting a Vanity Fair Readalong (#YoureSoVain). Heather and I attempted this one as a buddy read last year sometime, and I think we both flaked pretty quickly. I think that was on the heels of our highly successful Madame Bovary buddy read, and it was just too much of the same time period all squashed together. I'm hoping I have better luck this time, though if it doesn't click I won't put too much pressure on myself to finish. The important thing is to read enjoyable selections and KEEP READING. 

Header over to Melissa's blog to officially sign up!

So what have you read lately???

I still need to download and whip through Me Before You by Jojo Moyes for my book club next week. Think I can do it??? The premise doesn't really blow my skirt up, but I WANT TO DISCUSS with my friends!!!! 



34 comments:

  1. I know what you mean - sometimes I'm happy to wait at the doctor's office or the car dealer.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Amen, sister! I need to be held hostage a lot more.

      Delete
  2. Glad you got your reading groove back and the romantic Valentines weekend you deserve!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Ali! And the Valentine's Day weekend was relaxing and stellar. :)

      Delete
  3. Looking forward to your thoughts on the Caitlin Moran, there's a lot of good discussion stuff in that book!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Joanna! Definitely a lot to discuss in the book. I'm still trying to gather my thoughts. Oy!

      Delete
  4. That home cooked meal sounds absolutely delicious!
    I have a review copy of Me Before You, it's not my thing either but so many bloggers I respect have loved it - so I reckon you can definitely do it in a week!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Sam! He really outdid himself, and it was soooo good because I've been a bad home cook lately. lol

      We'll see how it goes. I have it loaded on my Nook and ready to tackle tonight.

      Delete
  5. Every time I come to your blog I love the poppies all over again.

    How to Be a Woman kinda intrigues me, looking forward to that review.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's a really good book, Lisa. And lots of humor. I cackled several times.

      And thank you re: poppies. I was tired of so much white space.

      Delete
  6. Check you out, getting into the groove again! Whee! I am hoping to get somewhere myself, but instead I find myself gazing unseeingly out the windows. Here is my post.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Oh what a lovely way to celebrate Valentine's!

    It seems like everyone has read something by Moran! I have to jump on the bandwagon ASAP! Glad you've got your groove back!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. She's so so so funny. LOL funny, in fact. She's also crass. Just FYI. lol

      Delete
  8. Good luck with Vanity Fair! I think it's worth the long read. I just finished Take Care of Mom, which would be a great book club book. I've heard good things about Caitlin Moran's book, sounds like your review will be a good one.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! I hope so. And Take Care of Mom does look like a great discussion book.

      Delete
  9. Oh dear, was Beautiful Creatures that bad? Was it so bad it wasn't fun to watch, or was it bad in the way that it's still fun with other people around? Hopefully the latter! I sort of want to see it! I suspect the Southern accents will be cracked-out-crazy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jenny, I responded via e-mail, but it was pretty bad. BUT it was fun with others. I had lots of snarky comments to make and eye rolls to roll.

      Delete
  10. Yay for reading some stuff!

    ReplyDelete
  11. My lord, David really is a Valentine's Day god! I think all of that may be more than I've gotten in any ten year period put together!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Short stories really are great. I finished a book of them last week. They were perfect for reading before bed. I could read for a while, but not feel the pressure to keep reading to the end of a book!

    You're not crazy to attempt the Vanity Fair readalong. You have a perfect attitude - if it's stressing you out, it's not worth it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lindsey, which collection was it that you finished? Inquiring minds and all. Vampires in the Lemon Grove is the next collection I have my eye set on.

      And thanks! Cheers to Vanity Fair!

      Delete
  13. So Beautiful Creatures sucked?... not sure that I am surprised at that.

    Good luck with the Vanity Fair readalong!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, pretty much, Jenna. It was sucky fun kind of like the first Twilight, though.

      Just found an audio version of VF. Things are looking up!

      Delete
  14. I joined the Vanity Fair read-along with you and others; looking forward to that classic which has long been on my list.

    I cried at the end of Me Before You, which I didn't expect to do. There's a lot to talk about even if the book originally strikes you as 'fluff' which it did me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So glad you're joining in, Bellezza! I posted a link to a free Librivox audio download on Twitter. Hoping by reading and listening I can make more headway.

      Looking forward to diving into Me Before You. Need to finish Little House in the Big Woods first, but that shouldn't take long at all.

      Delete
  15. I'm so curious about what you thought of the Moran. I had a hard time with that one. Sounds like you had a ultra romantic Vday, how awesome is that? :) Yay!

    Happy reading dahling!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jennifer, it was hilarious, but it did have its ups and downs -- things that made me think/doubt. I'll cover it in the review. Today or tomorrow.

      Delete
  16. Oh, gosh, Vanity Fair! I tried that book twice, and never made it to the end. Once I got very close, but I just couldn't make it to the finish line. It's very dense, but you already know that. Also I am glad that you had such an amazing Valentine's day!

    I am listening to Indiscretion, and not liking it at all right now. I don't expect that to chance, as there are only 3 more hours left in the book. I am sort of finding it insipid. And I am reading a fairly good book about a priest/doctor who is working in a sanatorium with tuberculosis patients, that I can't quite recall the name of right now!!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Please let me know if you're looking for a author for your blog. You have some really good posts and I believe I would be a good asset. If you ever want to take some of the load off, I'd love to write some articles
    for your blog in exchange for a link back to mine. Please shoot me an email if interested.
    Many thanks!

    Take a look at my webpage: premier weeknight
    My web site - premier

    ReplyDelete
  18. Hello, I think your site might be having browser compatibility issues.
    When I look at your website in Safari, it looks fine but when opening in Internet Explorer,
    it has some overlapping. I just wanted to give you a quick heads up!
    Other then that, wonderful blog!

    Feel free to visit my blog - vegetation

    ReplyDelete
  19. Yay, glad to hear you had such a sweet valentine!

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for taking the time to comment! I respond to comments individually by e-mail and/or here on the site. "No reply" bloggers will automatically receive a response here. I value community above all else in blogging, and talking with you all is the highlight of my blogging day!