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Graphic Novelty²

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Mid-Year Freak Out Tag²

I’m freaking out again! Let’s check in and see how my reading and blogging year is going:

Best book you read in 2018 so far

Chosen by my book club, I picked up this book uncertain if I would connect with it. But it grabbed me immediately, and brought up incredibly strong feelings. The compelling audio narration made me reflect on my own troubled childhood, and gave me much food for thought. This family drama set in Alaska in the 1970’s was filled with very real characters,  and this beautifully told story of survival (both physical and emotional) has stayed with me. Read my full review on Goodreads.

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Best sequel you’ve read so far 

In the first volume A Well Regulated Militia, Brian Wood first gives us a lengthy portrait of the fictional character Seth Abbott and his journey from farm boy to one of the well respected leaders of the Green Mountain Boys. Then we are given shorter non-linear vignettes of other loyalists and patriots and their contributions to the war. This second historical fiction graphic novel follows suit. In These Free and Independent States, we revisit Vermont to find that Seth’s son John is a boat-making savant. Spanning the years from 1786 to 1816, John comes to age as the new nation faces several threats and a new Navy is commissioned

New release you haven’t read yet, but want to

I ordered this YA book for my teen department, and it is a summer reading choice for the local high school that my library serves. I have an audio edition on hold and I look forward to listening to this fantasy novel that so many people seem to be raving about.

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Most anticipated release for the second half of the year

I look forward to every Walking Dead volume and both the mystery-thriller Lucas Davenport and Virgil Flowers books by John Sandford.

Biggest disappointment

A big fan of Andy Weir’s first book The Martian, I eagerly looked forward to his next book and was pleased to find a heroine in his second novel. Imagine my dismay when my opinion of Artemis  plummeted chapter by chapter. I was hate reading it at the end.

Biggest surprise

Author Michelle McNamara was nearing completion of this true-crime novel when she unexpectedly died. Her husband and two co-writers were able to finish it, and soon after publication with the resulting renewed attention to the crime, the case was solved. It was a bittersweet surprise that McNamara’s book helped bring the killer to justice. Read my full review on Goodreads.

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Favourite new author (Debut or new to you)

M.A. Bennett wrote a twisty psychological thriller for teens that I found very appealing. Her debut novel was a strong start, so I’m willing to check out further work from her. Read my full review on Goodreads.

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Newest fictional crush

I’ve been devouring graphic novels written by Brian Wood- does that count as a crush?

Newest favourite character

Enna, Sven’s traditional wife, from the Viking saga Northlanders by Brain Wood. In the first volume I hated Sven but loved Enna. She truly redeemed his character.

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Book that made you happy

I love Star Wars! I love short stories! Together this anthology was a win-win for me. From A Certain Point Of View is a must read for all Star Wars fans. It strengthened and filled in gaps in the narrative and this new canon was a treat from beginning to end.

Book that made you sad

What Happened is an apt title, for truly, what happened in the 2016 election? In this book Hillary Rodham Clinton reveals what transpired behind the scenes in her election bid to be president. Spanning many years of her life, but concentrating mostly on the two years preceding the election, she shares her thoughts and experiences of what went on. She reflects on what went wrong, she owns up to her mistakes, and she gives the reader a fuller picture of who she is. I cried several times while I listened to the audio while I mourned for a future that did not happen. Read my full review on Goodreads.

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Favourite book to film adaptation you saw this year 

Ready Player One was a solid adaptation of the book, but it didn’t knock my socks off. It’s The Hate U Give that is coming out later this year that I think will end of being my favourite film adaptation. It’s first trailer looks fabulous!

Favourite review you have written this year 

Kathleen and I did a fun blog series about who is the best cinematic Chris with bloggers Michael of My Comic Relief and Kalie of Just Dread-full. My choice of Chris Pine was obviously the best, but the whole experience of writing for this series was enjoyable!

Most beautiful book you’ve bought so far this year (or received)

Above The Timberline by Gregory Manchess is a unique book, that isn’t quite a graphic novel, instead it is a highly illustrated book, a so-called “painted novel”. Very reminiscent of the Dinotopia book series (minus the dinosaurs but add polar bears) by James Gurney, this large sized book has 240 pages of lush paintings that transport you to another time and place.The artwork is exquisite. He vividly creates a believable tundra landscape, and paints his characters, animals and interior backgrounds with precision.

What books do you need to read by the end of the year? 

I am a member of NetGalley and try to keep my book queue to a minimum so my ratio stays high. Right now the only book I have to get to is Other People by Joff Winterhart.

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Half way through the year and I’m on schedule for my Goodreads challenge of 100 books, as I’m at 54 with a few books almost done this week. So far, so good. Bring on the last half of 2018!

-Nancy

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Secret Life of a Book Blogger Tag

Recently I ran across this tag on the site Book Bastion and I thought it looked worthwhile. Bentley credits it to The Bibliophile Girl UK because that’s the blog he found it on, but as he says “it looks like its origins are lost to the ether.” So prepare to learn some deets about one half of the dynamic blogging duo of Graphic Novelty²!

Me & my hubby hiking at Starved Rock last month
How Long Have You Been a Blogger?

Kathleen and I have been blogging since January of 2016. We met in a graduate class at Dominican University, partnered up for a project in which we created a fake blog, and afterwards we decided to go live with it.

At What Point Do You Think You’ll Stop?

I love to blog! Kathleen and I are a good team so I hope to keep on keeping on.

What is the best part?

My IRL friends don’t read even a fraction of what I do, much less want to talk about the nerdy things I like. Although our blog is almost exclusively about graphic novels and geek life, if you follow me on Goodreads you’ll see I read many genres.  Now I can share my book musings and geek thoughts without shame!

What is the worst part?

Finding the time! I’m a married mom of three and a teen librarian, so my book blogging cuts into my precious little free time.

How long does it take you to find/create photos to use?

Depends- longer than I’d like since I overthink it.

Who’s your book crush?

That’s a tough one- I’m married and don’t develop crushes on book characters because I already have a real life prince ♥

What’s your favorite book, who is your favorite author?

Can’t pick just one!

Graphic Novels: Wendy & Richard Pini (ElfQuest), Joe Hill & Gabriel Rodríguez (Locke & Key) and Tim Seely & Mike Norton (Revival)

Fiction: Rainbow Rowell, Richard Peck, Silas House, Sheila Kay Adams, Kent Haruf & John Sandford

Non-Fiction: Dale Maharidge & Michael Williamson

The Revival series holds a special place in my heart since I was drawn in as a cameo character in the last issue. Yes, that’s really me!
Which author would you love to have on your blog?

Rainbow Rowell because we are secret soul sisters.

How long does it take you to prepare a post?

If it’s really short an hour- but some longer ones require several hours (usually not done all at once).

How do you feel about the book blog community/culture?

I love it! I’ve found genuine friends here and haven’t gotten mixed up in any drama.

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State your opinion, but don’t get caught up in “gatekeepers” in certain fandoms.
What do you think one should do to have a successful blog?

Wish I knew! Seriously though- just be authentic, post as consistently as you can and engage with other bloggers in the comments section! If someone sends you a comment, reply! If they took time to comment, then I want to give them the courtesy of a reply. Friendships can develop through those comments, and that can lead to guest posting on other blogs, which is another way to grow followers.

So there you have it-  my secret life as a book blogger!

-Nancy

The Reading Habits Tag – Part 2!

RH tag

Nancy tagged me in her reading habits post =P

  • Do you have a certain place at home for reading?

Not really, though I tend to read either on an armchair in the living room or downstairs on the couch. As long as I have a puppy next to me, I’m good =P

  • Bookmark or random piece of paper?

Both! Mostly random paper rn, as all my bookmarks save my favorite one are still in boxes with my school stuff XD

  • Can you just stop reading or do you have to stop after a chapter/ a certain amount of pages?

I try to either stop at chapters or breaks, but I’m good stopping wherever.

  • Do you eat or drink while reading?

I read while eating lunch all the time! Dinner too if I’m eating alone, otherwise my family makes fun of me XD

  • Multitasking: Music or TV while reading?

Occasionally. I’m more likely to listen to music while reading than watch TV.

  • One book at a time or several at once?

Several!!! I have too much to read to go one at a time.

  • Reading at home or everywhere?

Everywhere! I normally carry a book with me just in case I have a few spare moments~

  • Reading out loud or silently in your head?

Silently~

  • Do you read ahead or even skip pages?

No way, man! I see enough spoilers on the internet!

  • Breaking the spine or keeping it like new?

I try to keep a book new as long as possible, but it doesn’t bother me when the spine breaks either. It’s easier to lay on the table then and keep my place if I’m reading while eating something that requires both hands X,D

  • Do you write in your books?

No way! What kind of monster do you think I am???

Go nuts! Go ahead and copy and paste these questions onto your blog if this tag seems intriguing to you. What weird reading habits do you have??? We’re both dying to know ;D

  1. Do you have a certain place at home for reading?
  2. Bookmark or random piece of paper?
  3. Can you just stop reading or do you have to stop after a chapter/ a certain amount of pages?
  4. Do you eat or drink while reading?
  5. Multitasking: Music or TV while reading?
  6. One book at a time or several at once?
  7. Reading at home or everywhere?
  8. Reading out loud or silently in your head?
  9. Do you read ahead or even skip pages?
  10. Breaking the spine or keeping it like new?
  11. Do you write in your books?

And just a bit of personal news… I’m officially a librarian! I got hired part-time at two libraries near me!! And I start at both next week!!! I couldn’t possibly choose between them, they’re both great libraries and I’m sure I’ll be very happy. Not to worry, though, my handy dandy planner will be keeping me on task with two jobs, art making, boyfriend visiting, puppy watching, and, of course, this blog =P

– Kathleen

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