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Karsyn's Kickass Jocoserious, Kooky, Jannock book blog: June Reading Log & Challenges Update

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

June Reading Log & Challenges Update

Hi!  Anyone remember me?

Yup, I'm still around.  Still not as social as normal, but I'm trying to get back to a more normal "me".  I'm definitely going to be doing more blog posts soon, as I have 7 NetGalley books I need to review, with another 5 that I need to read (reading one now).  I'll catch up, and hopefully I'll get to the point where I'll be around again, we'll see how it goes.

For my Swap-Bot swap, I decided since I had to finish up my quarterly log, I might as well join the June log.  I am still BURNED out on reading for 8 weeks in March, April & May, where I completed 84 books, so I haven't read as much and my June was the least amount of books I've read in 2 years I think.  Since that's the case, I decided to put May below, just to give a more "me" amount of books.  :)  

What have I been doing, since I obviously haven't been reading?  (I've mainly listened to audiobooks at night before sleep, with the occasional kindle book thrown in.)  I've still be playing Skyrim.  I am OBSESSED with that game, it's great!!  In fact, this is being written at this moment because Hubby is playing Witcher 3 and I get Skyrim later on.  :D

On to my books read ~ 

June ~ 

01 ~ The Great Zoo of China by Matthew Reilly (re-read)

Completed 6/6

5 of 5 stars

        My first re-read of the year.  The Great Zoo of China is GREAT book.  Yes, it’s similar to Jurassic Park, only it’s dragons (since it’s on the cover, that’s not a spoiler) instead of dinosaurs.  People rate it down for that, which is stupid.  All books are like some other book, there are no new ideas.  Anyways, the book is great if you like action, which I do, with awesome main character including a kickass female.

02 ~ Cannibal (Chess Team 07) by Jeremy Robinson

Completed 6/7

3 of 5 stars

        A slow start for me, but I ended up likeing it pretty well by the end.  Was hoping they would learn something about the end of the last book but they didn’t.  Still waiting for that.  This is the most up to date book, so I’m looking forward to any more that come out.  Only book I have left to read is the prequel.

03 ~ Fire Study (Study 03) by Maria Snyder

Completed 6/9

4 of 5 stars

        Still really enjoying this series.  I like Yelena, she’s strong and confidant (most of the time).  I liked that the romance doesn’t overpower the story.  Tempted to just jump to Shadow Study for more Yelena, but with stick with the order of the overall series and move onto Opal.  I didn’t really care for her as a character, and didn’t think she could warrant her own series, but I guess we’ll see. 

04 ~ Storm Glass (Glass 01) by Maria Snyder

Completed 6/12

1.5 of 5 stars

        While there were SOME interesting parts, overall I didn’t like this book at all.  Opal is awful.  I hate weak people, I really do.  She questions everything doubts everything.  It gets old REAL fast.  Then her “love” interest was a complete ass.  When I was half way through I looked at reviews for the next two books.  I decided with the crap that happens, I will NOT continue with this series and likely won’t even go back to Yelena.  This book ruined the series for me.  The first 3 books were so great, I wouldn’t recommend any others.

05 ~ Crash (Game 03) by Eve Silver

Completed 6/15

4 of 5 stars

        Good conclusion to the trilogy.  Overall a really enjoyable set of books with good characters.  Wouldn’t be surprised if there was a continuations series, but I think it ended well enough.  The series is about some teens fighting a war against aliens.

06 ~ Wildest Dreams (Thunder Point 09) by Robyn Carr

Completed 6/20

3.5 of 5 stars

        Another book I wish we could rate parts of.  Thunder Point is a great town with great people.  Thunder Point on it’s own would rate 5 stars.  The reason I didn’t like this one quite as much is I HATED the female MC.  She had a rough life ~ boo freaking hoo.  That doesn’t mean she needs to be a bitch, but she is.  She’s only the 2nd Robyn Carr character I disliked.

07 ~ HP & the Half Blood Prince by JKR (re-read)

Completed 6/24

5 of 5 stars

        This is my 3rd full read through of the books in order.  This time I’m listening to the audiobooks done by Stephen Fry.  While he does a great job, I still prefer the amazing Jim Dale’s version.  Can’t do wrong either way though.  This is one case where I think the movie is better, takes out a lot of Harry’s whiney parts.

08 ~ Truth or Die by James Patterson

Completed 6/26

3.5 of 5 stars

        Enjoyable enough.  Typical quick and easy read that Patterson does so well.  The story dragged a few times for me but I liked the characters.  A former DA investigates when his girlfriend is shot in what seems like, but isn’t, a random robbery. 

09 ~ Prime (Chess Team 00.5) by Jeremy Robinson

Completed 6/29

3.5 of 5 stars

                        This is the prequel to the Chess Team series, and it’s been enjoyable.  It was neat to see how they came together, though I would have liked to have seen it with King having more of choices of who he had to choose from instead of not almost everyone else dying.  Still, good to be back with the team and with Bishop.  :)

10 ~ Depth by Lev Rosen

Completed 6/30

story ~ 3.5 of 5 stars / narration ~ .5 of 5 stars

                        The narrator for this audiobook SUCKS.  If the story wasn’t so engaging from the start, I would have not kept with it.  One of the more horrible narrators I’ve ever listened to.  The story is neat, it’s set in a future NY where NY is completely flooded up to the 24th floors.  They’ve created lives for themselves in the tops of buildings with a series of docks and lots of boats.  There's a mystery and a detective is wrapped up in it.

May ~ 

01 ~ A Mutiny in Time (Infinity Ring 01) by James Dashner
Completed 5/1
4 of 5 stars
        This series is similar to 39 Clues in that it’s written by different authors.  The series follows Dak, Sera and Riq who are 3 young brilliant kids who find themselves traveling through time to fix events that had been altered.  In the first book, they went back to when Columbus sailed to America.  In their history, Columbus had been thrown overboard, and they prevent that from happening, changing history back to the way it should be. 

02 ~ Divide and Conquer (Infinity Ring 02) by Carrie Ryan
Completed 5/3
3 of 5 stars     
        Not as enjoyable as the first one, this one they were in the time of the Vikings, trying to prevent the siege of Paris.  There was a dumb insta-crush in it that totally didn’t fit and became creepy.  It was just ok

03 ~ The Trap Door (Infinity Ring 03) by Lisa McMann
Completed 5/5
2 of 5 stars
        Definitely didn’t like this one was much.  This one had to do with the Underground Railroad and was very emotional on different levels.  It was hard for me to read at times, so I definitely didn’t enjoy it.

04 ~ Countdown (39 Clues: Unstoppable 03) by Natalie Standiford
Completed 5/7
3 of 5 stars
        Definitely a better book than the first two with some crazy stuff in it.  Amy isn’t as obnoxious and makes a hard choice.  Good all around, definitely was looking forward to seeing how it would finish up.

05 ~ Flashpoint (39 Clues: Unstoppable 04) by Gordon Korman
Completed 5/8
3 of 5 stars
        A good conclusion to the 4 book set.  I didn’t like them overall, Amy was too bitchy and the characters were off in 2, but this one ended up being pretty good.  Just one book to read and I’ll be caught up on all that has been published within the 39 Clues series so far.

06 ~ Savage (Chess Team 06) by Jeremy Robinson
Completed 5/10
4 of 5 stars
        In this one, the team was scattered through some of it.  They were trying to prevent a civil war in the Congo.  The ending of this one was especially emotional and I was glad that I was right about something that happened, but didn’t.  I don’t like that the team doesn’t know though.  Exciting ending, crazy stuff.

07 ~ Curse of the Ancients (Infinity Ring 04) by Matt de la Pena
Completed 5/10
3 of 5 stars
        Best one since the first, thought it would have been better without the insta crush/love.  These books don’t need that and I wish it would stop, though this one dealt with it pretty interestingly.  This ime tey were helping the Mayans in two different time periods.

08 ~ Cave of Wonders (Infinity Ring 05) by Matthew Kirby
Completed 5/11
3 of 5 stars
        Ok story, no insta-love so that’s always a plus.  Not as enjoyable as some others.  In this one, they are in Baghdad trying to save a library from being destroyed, something that connects to the whole starts of what it is that they do.

09 ~ Behind Enemy Lines (Infinity Ring 06) by Jennifer Nielsen
Completed 5/13
3 of 5 stars
        Another good enough story.  This one had them during WWII and they were working separately for the first time which was pretty interesting.  They were all in different places for most of the book. 

10 ~ The Iron Empire (Infinity Ring 07) by James Dashner
Completed 5/15
3 of 5 stars
        One of the top 3 of the series.  A good story and a good series conclusion…. Except there is another book?   I may just keep with this one as the ending because it seemed to end pretty well for me.  Wondering if this series is going to be like 39 Clues which has never ended.  Definitely taking a break from the series for now.

11 ~ Lady of Devices (Magnificent Devices 01) by Shelley Adina
Completed 5/15 (8 week challenge ended)
3 of 5 stars. 
        I don’t think I really read the description of this book before I tried it, it wasn’t what I was expecting.  It was OK but I HATED (with a passion) the MC’s mother.  The book got better when the mother was out of the picture for a while but it was still just an ok book for me. 

12 ~ Her Own Devices (Magnificent Devices 02) by Shelley Adina
Completed 5/17
3 of 5 stars
        This book got way worse than the first one before it got better.  Only one of the kids family, the kids and Andrew have any kind of redeeming qualities.  Still, despite a horrible mother, fake fiancĂ©e and a lying MC I found myself wanting to know how it turns out, but not headed to the next book right yet.

13 ~ The Heir (The Selection 04) by Kiera Cass
Completed 5/18
4 of 5 stars
        I had a hard time rating this one.  It’d be easier if I could rate individual things rather than the book as a whole.  Te problem with this book is the MC Eadlyn.  She is a complete self centered bitch.  The problem I had with the book on the whole is that I liked the story, I liked some of the boys and she did have a few redeeming parts but overall I disliked her.  I liked her strength, I didn’t mind her determination but I pretty much disliked everything else about her.

14 ~ Plugged (Rewind Agency 02) by Jill Cooper
Completed 5/21
4 of 5 stars
        I had a hard time rating this one too.  I wanted to give it a 5 but some of the stuff was REALLY REALLY difficult for me to read, specifically what happened in the VR world.  I didn’t like that at ALL and I wish the author hadn’t done that.  Other than that, such a great book. A great time travel / virtual reality series with mostly good characters.

15 ~ The Guardian (Chess Team 05.5) by Jeremy Robinson
Completed 5/21
3 of 5 stars
        Interesting start to a new mini series within the Chess Team series.  This series will be about King’s life when he went back in time and lived for those 2000+ years before joining back up in the present with the Chess Team (end of book 5).  The only bits I didn’t like was a bit of religious stuff going on which didn’t seem very King like.

16 ~ Veiled (Bone Secrets 03.5) by Kendra Elliot
Completed 5/22
3 of 5 stars
        It’s been a while since I’ve read any of the Bone Secrets books.  I didn’t have this one when I read the others.  It was an enjoyable enough short story within the series.  Lacey and Jack are checking out possible places to get married when they come across a dead body.  Jack knows the detective in charge, so they help out on the case.

17 ~ Poison Study (Study 01) by Maria Snyder
Completed 5/25
4 of 5 stars
        I liked it.  I was glad it wasn’t romance centric, there was almost none at all just some stuff near the end.  I liked that a lot since I’m sick of all romance in most books.  The story kept my interest and I liked the main characters pretty well.  It was my first book by my author and I’m looking forward to more.

18 ~ Magic Study (Study 02) by Maria Snyder
Completed 5/28
4 of 5 stars
        Another good story that still didn’t revolve around the romance, thought there was some.  I wasn’t a fan of Leif at all, but it seems like we weren’t supposed to be.  I didn’t really like her mother either, but I enjoyed the story overall.

19 ~ Nil Unlocked (Nil 02) by Lynne Matson
Completed 5/29
5 of 5 stars
        Was great to get back to Nil.  Love these books, great story, likable characters.  My only complaint is that the end is WAY too short.  We get a few page epilogue about what happened next, but I wanted more than that, definitely wanted more details!

Challenges Update

Bookish Bingo ~ 

Though I finished 21 books, I only had 4 Bingos for the last board, with where the books I didn't read were.  Still, pretty good overall I think, since there were some I didn't think I'd get to, and I really wasn't paying attention to it after a while, some I read just happened to fit.  My list can be found on my GoodReads Ready for Spring Bingo Shelf. Note that the Keep on Moving was just part of the book for an early sample ARC.

Audiobook Challenge ~ 

I signed up for Book Nympho's Audiobook Challenge and have been keeping up pretty well with audiobooks, despite getting burnt out on books, because I listen to audiobooks every night before I go to sleep.  I signed up to complete the "Marathoner ~ 50+" and I completed 50 books on April 12th.  For the 2nd Quarter, I listened to 51 books and now am at a total of 89 on the year.  With 164 books read this year, I have read more audiobooks then Kindle books! For a complete list, you can visit my GoodReads Audiobooks Read 2015 shelf. 

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