Monthly Archives:: December 2012

Dec 30

Sundays In Bed With… The Best Man

In Bed With... 9

PhotobucketSunday’s in Bed is hosted by Kate at Midnight Book Girl to share with everyone what you’re reading in bed Sunday morning before getting to the days activities.

Today I’m reading The Best Man by Kristan Higgins

Kristan Higgins The Best Man

Kristan Higgins is one of my favorite Chick Lit authors and I was super excited when I got approved for it through NetGalley. Because of my upcoming commitments I’m reading it early (It comes out February 26) plus I just really want to read it.

I’m not sure how much time I’ll be spending reading as this is the last week of the regular football season and it’ll be pretty much non stop action. But we shall see.

As Kate mentioned in her post I’ll also be starting Texas! Lucky soon. We recently discovered our mutual liking of the Texas! series. I can’t wait to write my review on it because I absolutely love writing Texas! In fact I kind of feel like bolding it and adding extra !!! every time I write it, just to make it more fun ;)

 

On another note I have to share a little funny from work the other day. One of my least favorite parts of my job is to go through applications. It’s tedious and there are quite a few bad apples out there. I’ve been doing this job for a looooooong time so it’s always refreshing when I come across something new on an application.

On the application there is a spot for you to fill out your previous job history, so here one of the questions, and the answer.

Question: What was you’re reason for leaving?

Answer: “i was too good for the low pay i was getting”

On the bright side he’s not lacking any confidence in himself. (also please note the “ i “, that was not a typo.)

I would also like to point out that probably 75% of the population thinks they aren’t getting paid what there worth, but I don’t see people quitting en masse because of it.

What are you reading today?

Kimberly


Dec 28

Looking Ahead to 2013: Blogging Goals

Year in Review 16

 

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What the future will hold…

2013 will be quite a different year from 2012. In the spring I’ll be taking a 5 month long certification course that I know is going to take up a lot of my time (and energy). I’d like to think I’ll be able to read a book a week, but I’m not sure that’s going to be a possibility, it’ll all depend on the time I have to put into this course. During these early months I’ll also be blogging less and probably commenting less. I have the opportunity to both blog and comment while at work so as long as work isn’t too crazy I should be able to keep up with commenting, as well as write my blog posts.

2013 Blogging Goals

1. Relax!

With the exception of the week right after BEA I’ve kept up with 2 reviews a week and 3 other posts. I know there is no way I can do this in the spring, I’d like to do 1 review a week but if I don’t get one in I’m not going to freak out about it. It’s ok.

2. Post my reviews to Goodreads

I am absolutely terrible at this! I’m usually ahead in reviews and I don’t post them on Goodreads until after I post them on my blog which means that I forget. I think to make it easier I’m going to make a point of writing a few thoughts on the book at the same time that I finished it.

3. Strive for a 50/50 balance

I’d like to read 50/50 YA/Adult books but since I’ll be reading less in the beginning of the year I’m sure it’ll be heavier on the YA books. I know I definitely want to read a 50/50 balance of series/standalones. While I enjoy series books, sometimes I just want to have a real ending when I finish a book.

4. The Challenges

I’m participating in 4 challenges this year, but I’m not going to freak out if I don’t finish them (cause really, I didn’t finish most of them this year).

Goodreads Challenge – 60 books
The A to Z Reading Challenge (I’m hosting this one. Check it out here!)
The Christopher Pike Reading Challenge
What’s in a Name 6 Challenge

Depending on how the year goes odds are not in my favor of success in all the challenges, but again, I’m ok with that. The fun is in trying to meet the Challenge.

What are some of your goals for 2013?

Kimberly


Dec 27

Looking Back at 2012 (with Pie Charts!)

Year in Review 19

Looking back on 2012

Honestly, I know these are going to be more for me than for you, but I love pie charts and what better way to use them than to dissect the books I’ve read this year!

Ratings
It comes as no surprise that most my books were 4 stars and all but a few were 3 stars and above. I think I’m pretty good at picking out books that I know I’ll at least like, though there were a few exceptions this year. I had one lone 1 star book. I don’t think I’ve ever rated a book one star before, mostly because if you finish it than I feel it should probably be 2 stars, but this book was just awful, I’ve finally written my review for it, but I didn’t want to end the year or start the year with this kind of review so I won’t be posting it until mid January.

Series
This was the statistic that surprised me the most. I had no idea I read so many series books until I started compiling my statistics. One of my 2013 goals is to read more stand alones. I’d like a 50-50 balance.
Genre

I’ve always been a big reader of contemporary and chick lit books so I was pleasantly surprised that those books were only 29% of what I’ve read this year, a big change from previous years. I’m also pleased that I read a good amount of books that are out of my comfort zone. Sci-Fi, Non Fiction and Historical made up 9% (11 books) of my reading which is more than the last couple years combined.
Clasification
This was the year of YA. Up until this year I read hardly any YA and I jumped into it with both feet this year. Next year I hope to strive for a more 50-50 balance. I read two “New Adult” books this year. I know there are arguments for and against this new classification, but for now I’m separating them out. I have very mixed feelings about “New Adult” books. We’ll have to see what the future holds, but it’s unlikely that I’ll be reading lots of them.
Type of Book
I have a pretty good balance of the type of books I read, mostly because I’m usually reading two at a time, one on my reader and a hard copy. I do prefer hardcover over paperback so it makes sense that that percentage is higher.
Year Published
The oldest book I read this year was Carrie, published in 1974. As I’m sure it is with a lot of people the bulk of my reading came from books that were less than 2 years old.

All in all I was pretty pleased with how everything in 2012 worked out. Here’s hoping to a fabulous 2013!

Kimberly


Dec 25

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

Holiday 11

 

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I’d like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas, and for those who don’t celebrate Christmas a Happy Holiday! I hope Santa brought you lots of bookish gifts!

I thought I would share a few of my favorite Christmas memories today.

1. Family Christmas on my dad’s side.

The last Christmas before my Grandpa passed away everyone on my dad’s side except one cousin was able to make it up to Minnesota for Christmas. It’s the only Christmas that so many of us were together for and it was so much fun. It took forever to open all the presents and we were so cramped in the small living room, but I wouldn’t change it for anything.

2. Sega

I will never forget the year my brother got Sega from Santa. He was 5 and tore through the paper and the back of the box ended up facing him when he was done. He picks up the box and is just staring at it with the most confused expression on his face (the back was just filled with lots of words). Being the great sister that I am I just start laughing because I’m looking at the front and I know what it is. My mom turns it around and my brothers face just lights up!

3. Family Christmas on my mom’s side.

The first and probably last time we were all together for Christmas on my mom’s side was three years ago. It was the first time in forever that my Jared accepted the invitation to come up for Christmas. We had such a good time but things are a little stressed on that side of the family now so I don’t see there being a repeat, which makes me treasure this one all that much more.

4. Senior year Secret Santa

My senior year in high school me and 11 of my friends decided to do Secret Santa. We exchanged names and locker combos and we did little treats and notes throughout December and then we had a party. One of the girls had only gotten one thing all month from her Secret Santa while everyone else had gotten several. My two best friends and I were concerned about her getting a gift at the party so we went out and bought one. I then I had my mom peak at all the gifts while we were eating and sure enough, Becca didn’t have a gift! I can’t even tell how relieved I was that we had went out and got one for her.

5. Bike

I was seven. I got a bike. What could be better than that?

6. The year I learned a lesson

It’s not really a great memory, but an important one. When I was in the sixth grade I went hunting around for the Christmas presents. I found them, saw everything I was getting. Worst time opening presents ever. It’s no fun when you know what you’re getting.

7. Band concert, 10th grade

We played all the best Christmas songs. Carol of the Bells. O Holy Night, Silent Night, Jingle Bell Rock and Let it Snow (yeah, I remember them all, so what?). We sounded so good too.

Kimberly


Dec 24

Review * Decked with Holly by Marnie Bates

Reviews 5 ★★★★

Review * Decked with Holly by Marnie BatesDecked with Holly by Marnie Bates
Published by K-Teen on September 25, 2012
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Pages: 272
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Add to: Goodreads
four-stars
Smartly blending of-the-moment pop culture references and timeless themes, Bates follows her YA debut, "Awkward", with a hilarious, over-the-top adventure about a teen girl who becomes the fake girlfriend of a cute rock star.

Taking a Christmas cruise with her two cousins from hell isn't Holly's idea of a good time. And when seasickness forces her into an open suite, she's pepper-sprayed by a gorgeous guy called Nick. But when Holly makes her exit, she's greeted by a horde of screaming teenage fans. Because Nick happens to be Dominic Wyatt, drummer for one of the hottest bands in America. Suddenly rumours are swirling and Holly's face is plastered all over the Internet. The band can't risk a scandal destroying their family-friendly image, so Dominic convinces Holly to be his fake girlfriend - just for two weeks. How bad could it be to be "fauxmantically" involved with a cute rock star? She's about to find out...

 

What I Thought…

  • Every year I read a Christmas book the weekend before Christmas. Even though Decked With Holly took place over Christmas time there wasn’t a lot of Christmasness in it. I wanted more Christmasness but Decked With Holly did not disappoint.
  • Decked With Holly was so enjoyable! It’s been a long time since I’ve been able to sit down and read a book in one sitting and this one made it easy. It was cute, funny and meaningful all at once. Bates writing was fantastic too. I can tell you that I will read more from her in the future.
  • I loved Holly! She was so much fun. I liked reading Dominic’s POV but Holly’s was so much more fun! Her thoughts were just ridiculous sometimes. She wasn’t a ridiculous person though. She didn’t want to be Dominic’s fake girlfriend, but since she had limited choices she made smart choices to make the situation work for her.
  • Dominic was also great. Even though he’s famous he didn’t act like a jerk about it. I also liked that he was the drummer and not the singer, because they’re almost always the singer. I loved seeing that he had a great relationship with his band mates.
  • Holly and Dominic were great together especially when you could see a real relationship developing and they both kept insisting it was fake. The part when things all fell apart practically broke my heart because you could just tell they were perfect together.
  • Holly’s family is quite possibly the worst ever. She lost her parents at a young age so she’s been living with her grandfather, who is not a problem (though definitely overprotective). Her aunt and cousins however needed to be bashed over the head. Her cousins were classic mean girls and made it their life’s mission to make Holly miserable. Her aunt was just as bad. How annoying would it be to sit down at the dinner table and have someone telling you how many calories your eating? Or what you’ll have to do to work those off? Or telling a 17 year old that life would be “perfect” if she just lost those 15 extra pounds. Because that’s what every girl needs to hear. Holly was pretty civil about it, probably more than I would have been.

Overall I really enjoyed this one and definitely recommend it!

Kimberly


Dec 23

Sundays In Bed With… Decked with Holly

In Bed With... 9

PhotobucketSunday’s in Bed is hosted by Kate at Midnight Book Girl to share with everyone what you’re reading in bed Sunday morning before getting to the days activities.

Today I’m reading Decked with Holly.

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Every year the weekend before Christmas I read a Christmas themed book. This year I’ve decided to read Decked with Holly by Marnie Bates. It’s pictured here with my Nativity set. I’ll be reading in between making all the pies. Lots to make this year!

I normally make 3 pies for the holidays (pumpkin, cherry, blueberry). This past Thanksgiving I was talking on the phone with my aunt discussing how many people were coming for Thanksgiving (now only 7). I could hear my uncle shouting to her, “she only needs to make one pie!” One pie! He thought 7 people could share one pie for Thanksgiving, that more than that would be “too much pie”. Is there any such thing as too much pie? I didn’t think so. Plus, what are you supposed to have for breakfast the next day? I went ahead and made the three pies anyway, and there was enough left over for breakfast the next day. :)

This Christmas there will be 11 people there, that’s 4 more people, and 4 more people deserves another pie, right? So I’m making 4 pies, 2 pumpkin because that one went fast at Thanksgiving. And I know my uncle is going to freak out. But I don’t care, because there is no such thing as “too much pie”.

Kimberly


Dec 21

2012 End of Year Book Survey

Year in Review 16

Image17-1024x584 The 2012 End of Year Book Survey is hosted by The Perpetual Page Turner!

Best in Books 2012

1. Best book you read in 2012? (You can break it down by genre if you want)

YA Contemporary – Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry (I gave it a slight edge over The Fault in Our Stars by John Green)
Adult Contemporary – I’ve Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella
YA Non Contemporary – The Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
Adult Non Contemporary – Nice Girls Don’t Have Fangs by Molly Harper

2. Book you were excited about and thought you were going to love more but didn’t?

The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting. It wasn’t awful or anything, just totally not what I was expecting. And the writing felt off.

3. Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2012?

Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake. I’m not a fan of being scared but this cover was just so pretty I couldn’t resist it.

4. Book you recommended to people most in 2012?

Either Beauty Queens by Libba Bray or Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry

5. Best series you discovered in 2012?

The Heather Wells series by Meg Cabot. So funny. So cute.

6. Favorite new authors you discovered in 2012?

So many! Check out my Top Ten Tuesday on that topic.

7. Best book that was out of your comfort zone or was a new genre for you?

Cinder by Marissa Meyer. I don’t do aliens. I can’t stand them. I’m also not a huge sci-fi fan. This book was destined to be a huge dislike for me, except it wasn’t. I really enjoyed it, so thanks Andrea for making the deal with me to read it!

8. Most thrilling unputdownable book in 2012?

Books I read in one sitting: Timepiece by Myra McEntire, Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins, The Fault in Our Stars by John Green, Divergent by Veronica Roth, Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry, Stealing Parker and Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally. Just to name a few ;)

9. Book you read in 2012 that you are most Likely to re-read next year?

Excluding any series books, Stealing Parker by Miranda Kenneally

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2012?

Kendare Blake Anna Dressed in Blood

There are so many too choose from, but I’m going with Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake because it was the sole reason why I picked up this book.

11. Most memorable character in 2012?

Again, so many! I’ll go with Samantha from Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver. Not the most likeable character, but one of the most memorable ones for me.

12. Most beautifully written book read in 2012?

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

13. Book that had the greatest impact on you in 2012?

This is hard one because I don’t feel like any of them really “affected” me personally, so I’ll go with a book that has a great message and was wonderfully written, Easy by Tammara Webber.

14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2012 to finally read?

Size 12 is Not Fat by Meg Cabot. I’ve seen these books on the shelves forever and never actually picked one up. That was a mistake.

15. Favorite passage/quote from a book you read in 2012?

I’m absolutely terrible at keeping track of quotes. I’ll say that one of my favorite scenes this year was between Echo, Noah and her parents in Pushing the Limits.

16. Shortest & Longest book you read in 2012?

Shortest – Hana by Lauren Oliver (novella) 64 pages
Longest – 11/22/63 by Stephen King 679 pages (ebook version)

17. Book that had a scene in it that had you reeling and dying to talk to somebody about it (a WTF moment, an epic revelation, a steamy kiss, etc.) Be careful of spoilers!

The ending to The Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin. The ending was just… what???

18. Favorite relationship from a book you read in 2012 (be it romantic, friendship, etc):

Rather than go with a romantic relationship I’m going with a friendship on this one. I loved the friendship between Jacqueline and Erin in Easy by Tammara Webber. It’s wasn’t perfect but it was real, and Erin is probably the best BFF in a book I’ve ever read.

19. Favorite book you read in 2012 from an author you read previously:

I’ve Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella. She doesn’t disappoint.

20. Best book you read that you read based SOLELY on a recommendation from somebody else:

Venom by Fiona Paul. It was recommended by a few of the ladies that worked for Penguin. I’m very picky about historical fiction and didn’t plan on picking it up at BEA until their recommendation.

Book Blogging/Reading Life in 2012

1. New favorite book blog you discovered in 2012?

All of them. How can I choose? (And yes, I know that’s a cop out!)

2. Favorite review that you wrote in 2012?

Ashfall by Mike Mullin

3. Best discussion you had on your blog?

I don’t really do a lot of discussion posts, but my post on why I might not be commenting was popular.

4. Most thought-provoking review or discussion you read on somebody else’s blog?

This one I just read recently about negative reviews over at A Reader of Fictions. She hit the nail on the head for me. I’ve never had a bad experience with an author, but I’ve seen some things and it always makes me sad. Not everyone is going to like every book written ever.

5. Best event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, meme’s, etc)

BEA. I had so much fun. The books. The bloggers. The authors. It was so good.

6. Best moment of book blogging in 2012?

When I received my first tweet from an author. That was awesome.

7. Most popular post this year on your blog (whether it be by comments or views)

Excluding memes, readathons, etc I had a tie (using comments) between Not Enough Time to Read and 50 Shades and Walmart.

8. Post you wished got a little more love?

My review of Ballads of Suburbia.

9. Best bookish discovery (book related sites, book stores, etc)

Bookmarks. Laugh if you want but I didn’t start using bookmarks till this year. I used to fold the corners of my paperbacks and use the flap in my hardcovers. Now I can’t imagine ever doing that!

10. Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?

I completed two challenges. The first I completed was to read 15,000 pages hosted by Abducted by Books. I more than doubled this one.

I also completed was my Good reads challenge. I originally started with 100 books, but when I started crushing that I bumped it up to 130, but then I ended up lowering it to 120 when I realized I didn’t take into consideration how busy the end of the year was going to be.

I participated in a few other challenges but I failed to complete them.

Looking Ahead…

1. One book you didn’t get to in 2012 but will be your number 1 priority in 2013?

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest. I promised my mom I would finish this like 6 months ago…

2. Book you are most anticipating for 2013?

Requiem by Lauren Oliver.

3. One thing you hope to accomplish or do in your reading/blogging in 2013?

Attend more author events. They are so much fun and something I never really thought about until this year.

Kimberly


Dec 20

Mini Reviews

Mini Reviews 7

Gabrielle Zevin Because It Is My Blood

Because It Is My Blood

Gabrielle Zevin
Birthright #2
2012

I read this in one sitting and took no notes. It’s now 5 days later and I can’t remember enough to right a decent review, so here’s the short version:

Read it (after All These Things I’ve Done of course!). Because It Is My Blood has a slightly different vibe than All These Things I’ve Done. More mob, more lying and deceit. More Win.

new onthewings4

 


Jill Shalvis At Last

At Last

Jill Shalvis
Lucky Harbor #6
2012

Not too much to say about the Lucky Harbor series other than the fact that I love it. It’s by far one of my favorite contemporary romance series and I love coming back to the cute little town and revisiting all the characters and meeting new ones. I hope this series never goes away.

new onthewings4

Kimberly


Dec 18

Top Ten Tuesday: Best of 2012

Top Ten Tuesday 14

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by the awesome people at The Broke and Bookish, who love lists as much as I do!

Top Ten Books of 2012

Could this list be any harder to make? No, I didn’t think so. It’s no surprise (to me anyway) that half of my list is contemporary and the rest is a mix.

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1. I’ve Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella

2. Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake

3. Stealing Parker by Miranda Kenneally

4. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

5. Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry

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6. The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

7. Venom by Fiona Paul

8. Divergent by Veronica Roth

9. Somebody to Love by Kristan Higgins

10. Bossypants by Tina Fey

Kimberly


Dec 17

Review * The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting

Reviews 7 ★★★

Review * The Body Finder by Kimberly DertingThe Body Finder by Kimberly Derting
Series: The Body Finder #1
Published by Harper Collins Childrens on March 16, 2010
Genres: Mystery, Paranormal, Young Adult
Pages: 328
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Add to: Goodreads
three-stars
Violet Ambrose is grappling with two major issues: Jay Heaton and her morbid secret ability. While the sixteen-year-old is confused by her new feelings for her best friend since childhood, she is more disturbed by her "power" to sense dead bodies—or at least those that have been murdered. Since she was a little girl, she has felt the echoes that the dead leave behind in the world... and the imprints that attach to their killers.

Violet has never considered her strange talent to be a gift; it mostly just led her to find the dead birds her cat had tired of playing with. But now that a serial killer has begun terrorizing her small town, and the echoes of the local girls he's claimed haunt her daily, she realizes she might be the only person who can stop him.

Despite his fierce protectiveness over her, Jay reluctantly agrees to help Violet on her quest to find the murderer—and Violet is unnerved to find herself hoping that Jay's intentions are much more than friendly. But even as she's falling intensely in love, Violet is getting closer and closer to discovering a killer... and becoming his prey herself.

 

What I Thought…

  • I really like the concept of The Body Finder. Violet sees echoes or imprints around dead bodies, and the person who killed them also carries the echo. These echoes were both visual and auditory which was pretty cool. The Body Finder is one of those books that I could see being turned into an excellent TV series, especially if the character is aged a bit. There is just so many places it could go.
  • With that said, I was a bit disappointed in The Body Finder. I was looking forward to a mystery/suspense with a side of romance and I got a romance with a side of mystery/suspense. I like romance as much as the next girl but when you are expecting mystery/suspense and you get romance it’s a bit of a let down. I think if I would have gone into it with maybe a 50/50 split I wouldn’t have been disappointed.
  • I really liked the fact that Violets parents were a part of the book, and they were pretty realistic (except where Jay was concerned). They didn’t want to encourage her to use her abilities but at the same time they couldn’t stand the thought of her not helping.
  • I liked Violet a lot in the first half but that waned as the book went on and her and Jay got together. She did some dumb things, but that was to be pretty much expected. I also liked Jay better in the first half. He changed a lot when he got together with Violet, not in a crazy bad way, but I would have preferred for Jay and Violet to stay the same, but add some kissing here and there.
  • The mystery was good enough, but some of the Violet/Jay connection got in the way a bit.
  • The hardest part of the book for me was the writing. It wasn’t terrible but it felt off. I don’t really have a preference of first person vs third person but this was an awkward third person. I can’t quite put my finger on what was wrong but it kept pulling me out of the story.

Overall it was a good read, but know that it’s not really a mystery/suspense book.

 

Kimberly