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text 2018-06-02 05:40
May Reading
3 Thirds of a Ghost - Timothy Fuller
Sleepyhead: Narcolepsy, Neuroscience and the Search for a Good Night - Henry Nicholls
The Secret Library - Oliver Tearle
Browse: The World in Bookshops - Henry Hitchings

14 books read this month.

 

This month's relatively low number is a direct reflection of RL distractions, stress and what I hope is a mini-slump.  Things are looking up; here at the house of feathers, fur, and fins we had some medical uncertainty last month, but now have names to hang on everything, and treatment plans in place, so I have high hopes that June will be more SOP, and I can get back to avoiding real life by hanging out in books.  Also, a trip to Uluru next weekend is MUCH anticipated.  There will be camel-riding, an art exhibit and if I'm really lucky, I'll get to see one of these little guys:

 

A thorny devil, and it drinks with its feet. It places them in a puddle and water moves up by capillary action along grooves to the corner of its mouth.  How cool is that??

 

Quick stats (no charts this month):

 

Four 4.5 star books, but no 5 star reads this month.

6 male authors

8 female authors

 

6 mystery

6 non-fiction

1 audiobook

2 re-reads

 

 

 

TBR Project

 

My experiment in TBR reduction:  I can only buy 1 new book for every 2 I read off my TBR piles, tallied monthly.

 

I bought 6 books this month out of my allotted 13.  So I carry 7 books over to add to my 7 books budgeted for June (50% of books read the previous month - May).  Total book buying budget for June:  14 books. 

 

Hope everyone is pleased with their reading for the month - and bring on June!

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text 2018-05-01 04:25
April Epilogue - Reading in Review
The Broken Girls - Simone St. James
The Secrets of the Bastide Blanche - M.L. Longworth
Summer Hours at the Robbers Library - Sue Halpern
The Not-Quite States of America: Dispatches from the Territories and Other Far-Flung Outposts of the USA - Doug Mack
Lake Silence - Anne Bishop

23 books read this month.  A very happy surprise for me; had I been asked to guess, I'd have said no way would this be a great reading month by numbers.  My Christmas subscription of NewScientist magazine started arriving at the end of March and I read each weekly issue cover to cover - some articles more than once (*cough*quantum time*cough*).  

 

MT has also had a spectacularly bad run - even by his standards - of small, non-serious, but debilitating injuries: first minor surgery to his left wrist, immediately followed by an injury to his right wrist; just after the dr.'s all-clear, he sprained his ankle.  A day or two later, he severely sprained his right wrist (and arm) dragging a heavy trolly uphill.  As these injuries ALWAYS happened on Thursday or Friday, a girl could be forgiven for giving him the side-eye at this point, but it really is bad luck.  Both his and mine, because I am picking up the slack, including laying down a stone pathway that has to be done before we have a new garden fountain delivered.   For the record, I've always excelled at doing nothing, so I'm knackered!  But proud (about the path - stuff the housework).

 

All of that excess of info to say that I can't believe I read 23 books!  1 5-star read and 4 4.5-star reads amongst the lot. A few disappointments, but no outright bad books to speak of.  

 

Two charts this month - all the books were printed except 1 Audiobook:

 

 

 

My TBR project:

I've set a book buying budget for each month that = 50% of the total books I read the previous month.  Any books not bought carry over to the next month.  

 

I have to cry Force majeure for May, because this happened, and since I make up the rules for this little experiment, those books don't count. 

 

Moving on...

 

Last month I bought 14 out of the 16 budgeted, leaving me with 2 to carry over to May.  My total books read in April being 23 leaves me with a budget of 11 (rounding down for a  small error of margin). 

 

total books I can buy in May:  13

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text 2018-04-01 10:27
March marches out...
The Case of the Baker Street Irregulars - Anthony Boucher
To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
I Contain Multitudes: The Microbes Within Us and a Grander View of Life - Ed Yong
Burn Bright - Patricia Briggs
One Corpse Too Many - Ellis Peters
The Uncommon Reader - Alan Bennett
Miss Silver Comes to Stay - Patricia Wentworth
Miss Kopp's Midnight Confessions - Amy Stewart
The Moving Toyshop - Edmund Crispin
The House of the Cats: And Other Traditional Tales from Europe - Maggie Pearson

Either I was feeling generous, or I had a great reading month.  Since my RL wasn't as nice as my reading month, we'll go with great reading!

 

My total for March was 26 books.  Moonlight Reader's inspired reading version of the game Clue! (Cluedo to those in the Commonwealth), Kill Your Darlings, certainly helped keep my reading pace up, and as always, worked particularly well at getting the veterans off my TBR stacks.  

 

Of the 25 books, 2 were 5-star reads:

The Case of the Baker Street Irregulars by Anthony Boucher 

I Contain Multitudes: The Microbes Within Us and a Grander View of Life by Ed Yong 

 

I had 8 4.5 star reads too:

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee 

Burn Bright by Patricia Briggs 

One Corpse Too Many by Ellis Peters 

The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett 

Miss Silver Comes to Stay by Patricia Wentworth 

Miss Kopp's Midnight Confessions by Amy Stewart 

The Moving Toyshop by Edmund Crispin 

The House of the Cats: And Other Traditional Tales from Europe by Maggie Pearson 

 

 

 

Some stats, gussied up:

 

My TBR project:

I've set a book buying budget for each month that = 50% of the total books I read the previous month.  Any books not bought carry over to the next month.  

 

Last month I bought 11 out of the 15 budgeted, leaving me with 4 to carry over to April.  My total books read in March being 25 leaves me with a budget of 12 (I always round down; I figure this way, if I go over one month, there's a small error of margin). 

 

total books I can buy in April:  16

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text 2018-02-28 07:55
February Reading Wrap-Up
File on Fenton & Farr - Q. Patrick
Swearing Is Good for You: The Amazing Science of Bad Language - Emma Byrne
This Time Together: Laughter and Reflection - Carol Burnett

Clearing my slate before the new Kill Your Darlings game and the Flat Book Society's March read begins.

 

I've read 19 books this month.  Real life in February was a cranky bastard and I just didn't have the luxury of time I usually do.  Still, 19 is a much higher number than I expected and I'm very satisfied, all things considered.

 

A few stats:

3 Five star reads

4 Four star reads

1 1.5 star read; my lowest rating of the month.

 

13 books by women

6 books by men

4 audiobooks

7 non-fiction

12 fiction

 

In an effort to curb my TBR piles this year, I'm only allowing myself to buy half as many books as I read in the previous month.  If I buy less than the month's budget, I can carry over the balance.

February cumulative balance:  19

Books bought in February: 13

Carry over:  6

March budget: 9

Total book budget for March:  15

 

In truth, I thought I'd have blown this by now; it helps that I accidentally missed the library sale last month.  Something tells me I won't do so well when the next one comes around.

 

 

 

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text 2018-02-01 05:11
January is over already! Reading summary.
The Diary of a Bookseller - Shaun Bythell
The Pursuit of Love - Nancy Mitford
The Peach Keeper - Sarah Addison Allen
The Mayor's Wife - Anna Katharine Green
A Short History of Drunkenness - Mark Forsyth
Pomfret Towers - Angela Thirkell
The One-Cent Magenta - James Barron
The Bee Friendly Garden: Easy Ways to Help the Bees and Make Your Garden Grow - Doug Purdie
From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler - E.L. Konigsburg

I don't want to go back to work!

 

I read 33 books in January.  It's always by far my biggest reading month.  I work in schools, which means I get the summer holidays off.  December is crazy with holidays and MT being off work, but January I'm on my own all day and can read and read and read.

 

Of the 33 books, only 1 wasn't on my TBR pile when the month started.  I had 2 five-star reads, and 7 four-and-a-half star reads, so on average an excellent month.  My least favourite was a 2 star read; a collection of essays about libraries that I found repetitive.

 

Since the woman-author reading challenge is taking place this year, here are my "gender" stats:

Women authors:  15

Male authors: 17

Mixed: 1

 

A whopping 23 were non-fiction, compared to 10 fiction.

 

As for my TBR Challenge of only allowing myself to buy half as many books as I've read, I actually did o.k.  I did have a small cheat, because on New Year's Day, my neighbour came over and offered me 6 boxes of books she was getting rid of.  Karma was rigging the system for failure!!  After going through the boxes I chose 6, but didn't count them against my book budget; I categorised them as 'gifts' and I'd said from the start gifts didn't count.

 

So:

January's book buying budget: 12 books.

Bought:  9

Balance: 3 

Total TBR: 322

 

For February, my book budget is 16 books (January's 33 rounded down and divided by 2).

 

Go me!  ;)

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