Many of you have probably heard of the Biannual Bibliothon, a bi-yearly readathon (one in the winter, one in the summer) that hosts reading challenges to complete. This year’s readathon took place Saturday July 11th – Friday July 21st, with the live show on Saturday, July 22nd.
The challenges as set prior! *
- Read the group read: Aurora Rising by Amy Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
- Read an adult book: Risky Play by Rachel van Dyken
- Read a graphic novel: The Tea Dragon Society by Katie O’Neill
- Read a book based on the cover: The Boy Who Steals Houses by CG Drews
- Read a book of your choice: We Hunt the Flame by Hafsah Faizal, or Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout
- Read a book from a new-to-you author: The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner, or Tea Dragon Society
- Read an anticipated book you never read: Time by Penny Reid, or Attachments by Rainbow Rowell
- Read a predicted five-star read: The Boy Who Steals Houses by CG Drews
- Read one of the host’s five-star reads: Scythe by Neal Shusterman – already read this month
* subject to change based on my mood and reading whims
Today … I finished Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon for the Book Junkie Trials, and didn’t really use this as a day to get books read for this readathon.
But I did get to sneak in a reading of The Tea Dragon Society by Katie O’Neill!!No wonder, it’s only 60-some pages. But it’s super cute :) And the illustrations are adorable! They were my favorite part, to be honest.
If you haven’t heard of The Tea Dragon Society, it’s a children’s graphic *novel* (I use that word lightly) following the main character as she learns the care and keeping of forgotten arts: blacksmithing, so she can making things for people so they can retain pleasant memories, and the care of tea dragons. Tea dragons are these cute little creatures that are very fragile and delicate, and they grow tea leaves or tea flowers on their heads.
It’s such a precious book.
Now onto my next read: Risky Play by Rachel van Dyken! I plan on reading a little bit before going to bed, but I’m quite excited for this one! It follows Mackenzie DuPont and Slate Rodriguez, after they have a one-night stand during their Mexico vacation and Slate leaves her without saying goodbye… only for him to be her new employer! I love a good office romance, even if it doesn’t take place in a literal office, and a second-chance romance? Sign me up! It even has the tastes for being a hate-to-love romance …. Let’s get reading :)
12:45 AM: Update! I finished the book :) It was so sweet, I couldn’t put it down. And I was right about the tropes.
- Office Romance: it did not take place in a real office, but it was a workplace romance, one of my favorites!! There’s something about the sexual and emotional tension, the unrequited feelings, the fact that the characters are fighting her own feelings often with banter and bawdy one-liners, and that one is normally chasing hard and the other running in the opposite direction… yes!
- Second Chance Romance: heck yeah! Slate has to suddenly leave because of a family emergency after their one-night stand, and Mackenzie doesn’t see him again until he opens the door and she realizes that he’s the new boss! Sounds like a second chance to me. Full of yearning and memories and sizzling attraction they’re both fighting… yes!
- Hate-to-Love Romance: There was a little bit of this. Following his family emergency, Slate was not in a good emotional place when he opened the door and found Mackenzie standing there, ready for her day of work. He lashed out and was quite rude on multiple occasions, and didn’t think well of Mackenzie at all. But damn if she didn’t give as good as she got! I don’t know that I can label this a true hate-to-love, because while it had all the factors (banter, one-liners, rejection, rudeness, exploding passion), she didn’t truly hate him.
Overall, I absolutely adored this one!! If I could change one thing, it would be then number of times her eyes “filled with tears,” or how often “she felt the sting of tears,” because she was a Strong Independent Woman and the reaction (and how often it happened) didn’t strike true with her characterization.
That being said, Mackenzie and Slate both seemed so real on the page and I thoroughly enjoyed their love story. It had a wonderful cast of characters – which I love. Ms. Dyken does a marvelous job of making good use of her side characters; making them actual people and not just props to react to the main couple. I’m hoping this is an indication of a series for them … ? Yes… ? Please … ?!
Plus, you’ve gotta love a book that basically makes the dog his own character, full of personality and attitude of his own. He was no mere prop.
I’m off work today, so I have lots of errands to take care of. So… hopefully I can get some reading done :)
1:00 PM – So I finished all my errands and really want to read, but I think I’m in a bit of a reading funk, here. I keep starting things and then flopping around on my bed, stopping, and starting another. This is upsetting, considering I need to be reading certain books for the challenge! I joined a buddy read for We Hunt the Flame by Faizel with Emmy @book_Obsesser and Heather @pinkzebrareads on Twitter. I got through about three chapters today and am lightly intrigued … but also still in a floppy, unproductive mindset :(
I tried to work on blogging stuff, hoping that productiveness will kickstart my lethargic attitude, but my Adobe Lightroom decided not to work! So no photo editing happening over here.
5:00 PM – I’ve decided that I’m in the kind of mood that only Daemon Black can solve. Therefore, I’m rereading Obsidianby Jennifer L. Armentrout! Hopefully tonight will be the kick in the pants that I need to get out of this funk!
11:00 PM – oh my lord I’m loving this so much <3 I forgot how much I loved these books!!
Back at work today! I finished Obsidian last night and started book two, Onyx. I’m hoping to finish that one today.
I forgot how much I loved these books. Unfortunately, they don’t complete any challenges toward the Bibliothon, but I’m enjoying my reread so much anyway! Maybe I could change that …
The Lux series is very typical 2012 YA science fiction, but I’m enjoying the hell out of it! Daemon and Katy’s hate-to-love, boy-next-door romance, biting one-liners and (eventual) affectionate relationship is really something to aspire to. Their chemistry practically jumps off the page, I adore it soo much! It’s really getting me out of my funk I think. But I’m finding myself unable to stop :)
Today’s my last day at work before I leave town tomorrow for North Carolina!! I don’t anticipate much reading happening today, because I work all day and then get home to pack. I’m a horrible packer – I overpack to an extreme, and not just the books.
I tried to read more of We Hunt the Flame, but it’s just not capturing my attention. Which is disappointing because so many people recommended it to me.
In other news, I finished Onyx, book two in the Lux series by Jennifer L. Armentrout! It’s one of my favorite books of the series, because it’s when the teasing flirtation between Daemon and Katy gets intense! We love a man who can woo. And boy, can my Daemon woo a girl. He had me melting in the first couple chapters! Good thing my girl Katy is made of sterner stuff, so was able to hold off much longer, and you know I love a slow burn. How does three books sound? *evil laughter*
I read nothing.
I have no excuse.
I started and finished Opal, the third book in the Lux trilogy by Jennifer L. Armentrout! Oh emmm geee, these books made me smile like the squeal-y valley girl that I most certainly am not. But hell, these books turn me into such a cheerleader for this trope! This series is like the Twilight of alien sci-fi for me, okay?
What were those things called that they used to make us do in like middle school English class that was such a waste of time? Twilight is to Obsidian as vampires is to aliens, or some shit like that.
NOTHING BUT LOVE FOR MY DAEMON BLACK.
Not to mention, these book are always fun because Katy is a book dragon, just like us. She squeals about new releases and book packages on her doorstep. She has a book blog and makes “In my Mailbox” videos.
(can we talk about the scene where Daemon was in one of those videos?? SCREEEEE! There goes my inner Cheerleader. (oh no, I’m turning into Anastasia Steele… someone help!))
I’m clearly in a great mood and in a fine frame of mind. It may have something to do with that goddamn cliffhanger!
Look… Did I mention that I was on vacation visiting family? I didn’t read anything today :/ DUE TO OUTSIDE FORCES OF COURSE. nothing to do with me. no, not at all…
I also read nothing today.
11:00 PM – PSYCH! I actually started Attachments by Rainbow Rowell tonight. And by “started” I mean, I read most of the book before I literally couldn’t read any more. Attachmentsis such a sweet book. It follows the main character, Lincoln, at his new job as an Internet Officer. The job is not as glorious as he thinks, as he pretty much sits around the reads people’s inter-office email, writing a report every time a dirty joke or inappropriate comment is made.
But he finds that when it comes to Beth and Jennifer’s emails, which are always hilarious and entertaining and very not work appropriate, that he can’t write them up. Then he finds that he’s absolutely in love with Beth, a woman he’s never met. How would he even introduce himself after knowing everything about her?
It was such an adorable book. It has the glaring awkwardness that’s usual for a Rainbow Rowell book, but it was also a very cleverly critical book when it comes to human emotion and feeling. For a fluffy romantic read, it hit me in more places than I was planning.
I’m going to read today, goddammit!
I finished Attachments!! It was supercute and I can’t not recommend it. I also read The Boy Who Steals Houses by CG Drews, which I’ve been meaning to read for AGES. IT WAS SO GOOD
ALLOW ME TO SPAM YOU WITH MY LOVE FOR THIS BOOK. I pretty much just sat down and read it in one sitting. It had all the best elements to make it pretty much the most adorable book.
The main character is the most awkward cinnamon-roll of a boy ever and his devotion to his brother was amazing to witness. It was a cute summer boy-meets-girl, it had some friends-to-lovers, but it also had a seedy side that was Sam’s life. That shit went places. Damn.
So what you don’t know, is that when I typed that out ^^ around lunchtime yesterday, I also got super sick. We’re on vacation in North Carolina visiting family and my dad and I both got *infected* with their contagions. Luckily, I didn’t get the gross vomit-y stuff that he did, but I did get enough stomach pain to wish I could just get it out, and I was running a pretty high fever. So not a lot of reading after that.
We’re miserably trying to get home today, driving from North Carolina back to Ohio, and with all the horrible traffic it took us like 12 hours. I did downloaded the audiobook of Aurora Rising, and it actually seems like a fairly interesting read! But I also didn’t get very far because I felt like shit. So I will be looking forward to reading this sometime in the future, but unfortunately for me, this readathon did not end on a high note. Actually, the readathon ended last night, but I was somehow hoping that I could at least get to the group book… oh well.
- Risky Play by Rachel Van Dyken — oh my gosh, this book was so enjoyable!! It features a workplace romance, second-chance romance, and hate-to-love romance! Ms. van Dyken did a wonderful job making her characters come to live, and utilizing her cast of side characters as people, not just props. Including the dog :)
- The Tea Dragon Society by Katie O’Niell — it was such a sweet little story! A little girl’s wonderment over learning two lost arts, and the absolutely adorable tea dragons… my heart simply melting. Not to mention the beautiful artistry!
- The Boy Who Steals Houses by CG Drews — Cait writes the most phenomenal awkward cinnamon-roll boys, and her stories are soaked with emotion. This was no simple love story, and it definitely had a seedy dark side I wasn’t expecting. And it was all amazing.
- Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout — there are no emotional feelings or trauma that this book (and Daemon Black with it), can’t solve. Katy and Daemon’s tumultuous love story is always a joy… especially with their bickering 😈
- Attachments by Rainbow Rowell — this was a strange one. It’s format was very unconventional, but it had the glaring awkwardness typical of a Ms. Rowell novel. It managed to be a fluffy romantic read that was also cleverly critical with human emotion and feeling. A definite win.
I’ve always loved this readathon. I’ve participated very low-key for the past couple years, but last year was the year I finally went hardcore and finally found success. While I did get to read some amazing books this week, it ended up being not that great of a week to plan a readathon. Not to mention, I was in a bit of a book funk from The Book Junkie Trials that went all through July (which are so fun, please participate next year!).
BUT my favorite part about this readathon has always, always been the community. Twitter was absolutely alight with TBR’s and discussions of books, and I thoroughly enjoyed everyone chatting about the books they read and making recommendations. My TBR may hate this readathon, because as much as I “chip away” at it, inevitably more gets added, but I will miss it, as this was the very final round.
To the hosts: thank you for a lovely readathon. I’m sure I’ll be catching you on Twitter, soon ;)
Thanks for chatting with me! Are you participating in the Book Junkie Trials, or a different readathon, this summer? Have you read and liked any of these books? Let me know down in the comments below, I’d love to hear from you!