Saturday, April 29, 2017

Dewey's 24 Hour Read-a-thon [April 29th-30th 2017]

I will be updating this page constantly throughout the read-a-thon, so check back for updates!
Check out my other Social Media pages for more updates!

Litsy @NYCBookOwl

Hour 24 (The End) and now to sleep...

I'll admit at the end I ran out of steam..I stopped doing the hourly challenges and posting the IGreadathon posts on time. I stopped posting on litsy although I did tweet occasionally. I watched Bill Nye Saves the World instead of reading, read 3 of the graphic novels I had meant to space out in row and slept a fulfilling 6 hours straight instead of the 20 min naps I promised myself.

The result? I still had a ton of fun! I did complete the IGchallenge albeit more in spurts that consistently. I made some new twitter and IG connections and I did bump up my April wrap up to the highest it's been this year! Most of all I learned to relax and enjoy doing what this readathon was meant to encourage, reading your books!

Closing Survey!
1. Which hour was most daunting for you?
Probably the second when I realized I had been reading for 2 hours and barely made any progress in my book! But then I eased my way into a 'just read what you can' mentality and found my rhythm.

2. Could you list a few high-interest books that you think could keep a reader engaged for next year?
 Graphic novels (like Saga!) are a must!

3. Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next season?

4. What do you think worked really well in this year’s Read-a-thon?
Using different social media platforms to accommodate each  reader's preferences

5. How many books did you read?

6. What were the names of the books you read?
The 39 Steps by John Buchan
The Disappearance of Signora Giulia by Piero Chiaro
No Mercy Vol 1 &2 by Alex Di Campi
Nimona by Noelle Stevenson

7. Which book did you enjoy most?
Definitely Nimona! It's just absolutely adorable.

8. Which did you enjoy least?
Probably No Mercy, they're quite good but I was looking for Nancy Drew read alike not Battle Royal Lite

9. How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time? 
Definitely! I would like to host a mini-challenge if possible this time :) those were so much fun!


14th Hour (9:54pm)

After a second graphic novel break I think I'll try some non-fiction! (bell hooks maybe?)
But first here is my entry for the Create a Story in your Stack Challenge!

My kind of Haiku poem is:

Behold the Dreamers
All Grown Up
Perfect Little World

12th (8:00pm) HALF WAY THERE!

I'm halfway through!
It's been super fun although I haven't gotten as much reading done as I expected to, but there's always the second half!

Halfway there!

Here is my entry for the...

 Mid-Event Survey! 
1. What are you reading right now? - Feminism is for Everybody by bell hooks

2. How many books have you read so far? 3 (2 novels and 1 graphic novel)

3. What book are you most looking forward to for the second half of the Read-a-thon? - More graphic novels! (I'm saving Saga until last!)

4. Have you had many interruptions? How did you deal with those? Yes, with a hyperactive companion and a trip to my local indie there have been a lot of interruptions but I've been ok with that, it gives me a nice break!

5. What surprises you most about the Read-a-thon, so far? - How nice everybody participating and cheering everyone on is! It's been super fun!

11th Hour (7:02pm)

For the One Night Read challenge my pick is Ready Player One! I could not put this books down. If you are a sci-fi fan or interested in VR, video games, 80's geek culture or just a romping good read, definitely pick it up!

On a side not, today is also INDEPENDENT BOOKSTORE DAY!
Since I am doing the readathon, I am not participating in the book store crawl :(
BUT I did stop by my local indie and picked up these two great books on the recomendation of my local bookseller/indie store owner. Go give your indies some love!

Mini Haul from my local indie!

9th Hour (5:11pm)

Book and Snack Challenge! I am currently snacking on pear wedges sprinkled with cinnamon. Yum!

My new favorite snack!

8th Hour (3:42pm)

It's so hot my brain is melting...

Here is my entry it to the Books to Empower Challenge!

Empowering Reads

7th Hour (2:41pm)
Oh baby! It is HOT in NYC today! I took a break to read outside and to go to my local indie to celebrate Independent Bookstore day and I had to get some ice cream on the way back! Keep hydrated everyone!

Here is my entry in the Show us the Weather Challenge!

Hot + Humid = Ice cream time

4th Hour (12:18pm)
It's been a bit of a slow start with coffee and breakfast. But I've finally finished my first book! The 39 Steps by John Buchan, a spy/thriller classic turned into a Hitchcock movie too! My edition was 88 pages. I'm going to take a break and participated in the 6 Word Story Mini Challenge!

Here is my entry:

Readathons make for the perfect Saturday!

NYC Start time: 8:00am

T-Minus 15 minutes to the Read-a-thon! (7:45am)
Books? check!
Comfy clothes? check!
Social media? check!
Just going to go brew a pot of coffee to kick start the day and the readathon!

Hour 0 Mini Challenge - Opening Survey

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today? NYC!
2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to? Saga vol.2
3) Which snack are you most looking forward to? Dried Mango
4) Tell us a little something about yourself! I'll read anything but fantasy and mystery/thriller are my favorite genres.
5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? If this is your first read-a-thon, what are you most looking forward to? This is my first time! I'm looking forward to participating in the mini-challenges and making a dent in my TBR

Friday, April 28, 2017

Dewey's 24 Hour Read-a-thon TBR and Prep!

I am so excited! This will be my first time participating in the Dewey's 24 Hour Read-a-thon! If you are not familiar with this read-a-thon, it is pretty much what it sounds like: a 24 hour span to read as much as you can! It is hosted on the official website as well as on other social media platforms like GoodreadsTwitterIG and Litsy, and Facebook just look for #readathon. It takes place during the same 24 hours around the world so different countries have different starting times and there are prizes, challenges and sprints to keep everyone excited!

Basically it is a frenzy of book nerd awesomeness! This year my schedule is clear to participate and I am very excited to start! As a first timer/type A book nerd, I felt the need to make some preparations beforehand.

 I've compiled a pile of books I want to read during the read-a-thon. Well, not quite a TBR since I don't expect to get through all of them, but rather I want to have a 'pool' of pre-selected books to choose from during the read-a-thon. All of these books are fairly short from <100 - 300 and include fiction, non-fiction, essays and graphic novels although the majority are mysteries because that's how I roll.
Can't wait to dive in!

Food is probably my second favorite thing after books and I'll need both to get through this read-a-thon. Luckily  my supportive and bookish significant other has promised to cheer me on through this challenge and supply me with comestibles but snacks are a must when you feel your focus lagging so I picked up these goodies:

Nom nom nom!

If I could get through life never wearing pants I probably would. The next best alternative however are leggings and a baggy sweatshirt and fuzzy socks. Always fuzzy socks.

Gettin' comfy!

This will probably be a double edged sword! Connecting with people who are also participating will be great motivation to keep going. At the same time, I'll have to resist the temptation to check Facebook and IG constantly. The platforms/pages I will be using throughout the read-a-thon are

Litsy (@NYCBookOwl)

This page!

Happy reading everyone!

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Perfect Days by Raphael Montes

Author: Raphael Montes
Publisher: Penguin Press
Publication Year:2016
My Rating:4/5

A Pretty Pastel Pink hides Pretty Perverted Problems


Teo Avelar is a loner. He lives with his paraplegic mother and her dog in Rio de Janeiro, he doesn't have many friends, and the only time he feels honest human emotion is in the presence of his medical school cadaver—that is, until he meets Clarice. She's almost his exact opposite: exotic, spontaneous, unafraid to speak her mind. An aspiring screenwriter, she's working on a screenplay called Perfect Days about three friends who go on a road trip across Brazil in search of romance. Teo is obsessed. He begins to stalk her, first following her to her university, then to her home, and when she ultimately rejects him, he kidnaps her and they embark upon their very own twisted odyssey across Brazil, tracing the same route outlined in her screenplay. Through it all, Teo is certain that time is all he needs to prove to Clarice that they are made for each other, that time is all he needs to make her fall in love with him. But as the journey progresses, he digs himself deeper and deeper into a pit that he can't get out of, stopping at nothing to ensure that no one gets in the way of their life together.


Oh my...this book left me with so many thoughts and feelings which I still trying to untangle. Let me start by saying that this book (the April pick for the Criminally Good Book Club) is the first book that we've read that freaked me out in a hide-under-the-blankets way. There is no doubt that Montes is a very talented writer which has earned him comparisons with Stephen King, which is apt as his style seemed at times to blur the lines between crime and horror. (As an aside, I feel like several of the book club books blur the lines between genres: Pendulum felt very action/crime and His Bloody Project felt more historical literary fiction/crime which I find pretty awesome! I would have never encountered such a wide range of crime/thrillers had it not been for this book club!) But I digress, horror is not my genre. I am a HUGE baby, so there were several scenes in this book that made me queasy. I'm trying not to spoil too much but let's just say that Teo IS a medical student..

There are two things I really admired about this story. The first is the fact that this novel is set in Brazil, a country (or continent for that matter, I need to read more Latin American crime novels!) which I normally do not read about and the setting was masterfully described by someone obviously familiar with the places the story takes place in. The cultural details were atmospheric but not heavy handed, for example Teo drinks guava juice and listens to Brazilian artists throughout the roadtrip. The second were the twists that Montes put on several tropes (the road trip, the kidnapping, the manic-pixie dream girl). I feel like the concept of this book and even the main character were not wholly original (I kept thinking about Norman Bates) but the spin that Montes gives these tropes will keep you on your toes.

Montes really knows how to play with your emotions and make you uncomfortable. Montes brings up issues about consent, violence, and misogyny in was that feel plausible and made me put myself easily in the shoes of his victim. Ultimately that's what makes this book so good/scary is that it feels realistic. Everything except the ending which I feel might be a little divisive and goes for that cinematic touch a la Match Point, I personally enjoyed the ending (if enjoyed is the right word here) I though it tied the story together with a nice twisted bow. Ultimately this book is not quite a mystery, there's no big 'reveal' or a 'whodunnit' it is more a blend of the horror/thriller genre where the mystery is who will survive this macabre nightmare of a road trip. It was one of those books where I needed to take the occasional emotional break but found it really hard to tear myself away because I needed to find out what happened next. If you don't mind your books with a big dollop of creepy, definitely pick this up!