Happy New Year!

Happy 2017, all!

I hope everyone had a safe and enjoyable New Year’s Eve/Day. On Saturday, Jared and I had a late lunch with his parents (mainly to celebrate my father-in-law’s birthday). Then, we spent the evening with friends – eating more food, drinking delicious beverages, playing Jackbox games and laughing ourselves silly.

Yesterday was both productive and relaxing. I managed to make it to church about half an hour late yesterday and visited with my grandma. I put away most of the Christmas decorations (we just have the naked tree to haul to the basement, and our minimal outdoor bling is still up) while Jared watched Vikings football and Iowa basketball/napped.

I think this is the earliest I’ve ever started taking down Christmas stuff! Usually I wait until my birthday (which is this coming Saturday) but for some reason I got kinda tired of looking at it once Christmas was over.

While working on a few loads of laundry, Jared and I read for a while and then watched “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” while eating dinner. It’s one of his favorite films, and I had never seen it before. It’s so good!


“Hot damn! It’s the Soggy Bottom Boys!”


2017 Goodreads challenge


“41 challenges completed” on the second day of 2017? Huh?!

This is my third year participating in the Goodreads reading challenge. The past two years, I’ve surpassed my goal by a decent amount. So I’m stepping it up once again … since I read 46 books in 2016 with a goal of 30, my goal for this year is 50 books.


Winter Bookish Bingo update

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I’m making steady progress with Winter Bookish Bingo. I notice some people have marked a crap-ton of spaces already, but I have to remind myself it’s not a competition! Considering we have until the end of February to work on it, I think I’m doing fairly well.

Crime: “No Good Son” by J.L. Vaughan

White cover: “Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk” by Kathleen Rooney

Dec., Jan., Feb. release: “The Good Daughter” by Alexandra Burt

The two books I’m currently reading should fill in the “Not YA” and “Survival” spots. If I can find a sci-fi book I’d actually like, I’ll have my first bingo. Any recommendations for someone who usually avoids the genre?

Current reads

I’m working on an ebook ARC of “Everything You Want Me to Be” by Mindy Mejia (hitting shelves tomorrow) and a physical ARC of “Instrumental: A Memoir of Madness, Medication and Music” by James Rhodes (due for a Feb. 7 release, although I believe it’s been out in the UK for a couple of years). I kind of hate doing that, and I’m not sure it’s a habit I can maintain for an extended period – but I feel like my immediate TBR is piling up so reading more than one book at a time might make the stack seem less daunting.


“Everything You Want Me to Be” so far reads like a skin-crawler of a Lifetime movie. The main character, Hattie, is a total sociopath (picture Amy from “Gone Girl” as a teenager). I’m trying to decide whether I like it or not, but I’m still just a little over halfway through it so the jury is out.I’m telling you guys, if anyone ever makes “Everything You Want Me to Be” into a movie, The Police have the perfect theme song for it.30038981.jpg

“Instrumental” is not the kind of book I can breeze through in a matter of days. I’ve read 80 of about 280 pages.

Rhodes is a concert pianist who credits his survival of sexual abuse, mental breakdowns, etc., to his love of music. It is extremely honest, and therefore very disturbing.

Each chapter is labeled as a “track,” a classical piece Rhodes recommends listening to during that segment of the book. I have been doing so, and I think other “Instrumental” readers would be would be wise to follow suit.


Up next


Over the weekend, I received an author review request from Lucinda Berry, the author of “Phantom Limb.” She’s sent me an ebook copy I plan to start reading once I’ve finished one of the two books I’m working on at the moment.

Although Goodreads claims this book was released Dec. 15, 2016, Berry told me it is being published Jan. 17.

With the leaves, mud and puddles, this should take care of the Nature Cover space on my Bingo card.

That should about do it for now. I hope everyone has a great first week of 2017!



5 thoughts on “Happy New Year!

  1. Pingback: Winter Bookish Bingo update | That Book Lady Blog

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