Monday, December 30, 2013

Series Breakdown

You guys, I think I have a problem. I love to start a new series. Unfortunately, I'm less skilled at seeing it through to the end. As a result, I am very behind on many series. I know it. But then I saw this post by Jessi from Novel Heartbeat, where she bravely quantified just how behind she was (please give her credit for inventing this post, not me). Now I'm being brave too.

Completed - Not Caught Up
Anna by Kendare Blake - 1 book to go
The Witch Avenue by Karice Bolton - 3 books to go
Canterwood Crest by Jessica Burkhart - 19 books to go (including super specials)
Florence Waverly by Ciye Cho - 1 book to go **
The Frost Chronicles by Kate Avery Ellison - 3 books to go
Jessica by Beth Fantaskey - 1 book to go
As the World Dies by Rhiannon Frater - 2 books to go
Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier - 1 book to go
Elemental by Shauna Granger - 4 books to go
Unearthly by Cynthia Hand - 2 books to go
Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins - 1 book to go
Riders of the Apocalypse by Jackie Morse Kessler - 3 books to go
Kandrith by Nicole Luiken - 1 book to go
The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare - 2 books to go
Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr - 4 books to go
The Protector by M. R. Merrick - 1 book to go
Across the Universe by Beth Revis - 2 books to go
Solus by Devri Walls - 3 books to go

Total books to read: 54

Incomplete - Not Caught Up
The Oxford Trilogy by Marion Croslydon - 1 book to go
Bridger by Megan Curd - 1 book to go, book 3 releases 2013(?)
Penryn and the End of Days by Susan Ee - 1 book to go
Living Dead Love Story by Rusty  Fischer - 1 book to go, book 3 releases April 15, 2014
Gone With the Respiration by Lia Habel - 1 book to go
Vampire Born by Angeline Kace - 1 book to go
Monument 14 by Emmy Laybourne - 1 book to go, book 3 releases May 6, 2014
Fractured Light by Rachel McClellan - 1 book to go, book 3 releases April 8, 2014
Lily Drake by T. Michelle Nelson - 1 book to go
White Trash Zombie by Diana Rowland - 2 books to go, book 4 releases July 2014
The Legend of Drizzt by R. A. Salvatore - 18 books to go, book 25 releases March 4, 2014
Lillith Straight by Michelle Scott - 1 book to go
The Cahill Witch Chronicles by Jessica Spotswood - 1 book to go, book 3 releases August 14, 2014
Annie Loves Cham by Sheryl Steines - 1 book to go
The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer - 1 book to go, book 3 releases February 4, 2014

Total books to read: 33

Incomplete - Caught Up
Twisted Lit by Kim Askew and Amy Helmes - book 3 releases January 18, 2014
Memoir by Lady Trent by Marie Brennan - book 2 releases March 4, 2014
Finishing School by Gail Carriger - book 3 releases 2014
Truth or Dare by Jacqueline Green - book 2 releases May 6, 2014
Socialpunk by Monica Leonelle
Acrania: Trial by Fire by Liz Maverick
The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater
Icons by Margaret Stohl - book 2 releases July 8, 2014
Emilie by Martha Wells - book 2 releases March 4, 2013

Isis by Monica Hughes
Divergent by Veronica Roth

Not Continuing:
Unremembered by Jessica Brodie
Vampire Agape by Georgia Cates
Ava Delaney by Claire Farrell
Hush Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick
Amerias Adventures by Amy Green
Angel Eyes by Shannon Dittemore
Pretty in Black by Rae Hachton
Madison Avery Trilogy by Kim Harrison
Counterattack by M. G. Higgins
Shadowfell by Juliet Marillier
Yesterday by C. K. Kelly Martin
Broken by A. E. Rought
Returner's Wealth by Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell
The Destiny Saga by Heather M. White
Imperfect Darkness by Kim White

Completely finished series: 3
Series I need to finish (all books published): 18
Series I need to catch up on (unread published books, unfinished series): 15
Series I’m caught up on (have books unpublished yet): 9
Series I don’t plan to finish: 15

So what have we learned? I don't finish series nearly as quickly as I start them. I've completed 2 series since starting this blog. Two! I also have a couple of huge series on the go. The Legend of Drizzt is up to book 25! Also, there's a surprisingly high number of series that I don't plan to continue. And I have 87 books to go before I'm caught up, not including the 14 books with releases dates announced in the new year (2 of which I have ARCs for already).

I'm planning to post an update in 6 months to see if I've made any progress. Wish me luck.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

2014 Monster Reading Challenge Post

Rather than do individual posts for every reading challenge I want to participate in, I've decided to make one huge monster post for all of them.

TBR Pile Reading Challenge

My bookshelves are FULL of unread books that I want to read so bad but keep getting distracted by shiny new books.

Goal: 20 books

Review Pile Reading Challenge

Phantasmic Reads

My review list is way too long. I'm not sure if I'll even catch up on all those ebooks I requested when I first discovered Netgalley, but I definitely plan to catch up on my physical review copies this year.

Goal: 15 books

Prequel & Sequel Challenge

This one runs on a points system. If I read all the books I have planned, I'll end up in the Advanced category

Goal: 64 points

2014 Series Challenge

You guys, this has badges. BADGES! I'm in!

Goal: Silver (complete 4-6 series)

Dystopian Reading Challenge

Maybe this year...

Goal: Rebel (7-12 books)

Friday, December 27, 2013

The EPICest reading challenge ever...

Well, I'm all about this reading challenges this time of year, but I think it's time to embark on the EPICest of all reading challenges.

1 million pages!

It may take a few years, but I am commited. Bam! I'm starting this one retroactively to the book I'm currently reading. No takesies-backsies!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Happy Holidays!

Happy holidays from Megan Likes Books. Unfortunately, I'll be working through Christmas this year, but I'm going to give the blog a bit of a break as well. I should have posts starting again on Monday!


Thursday, December 19, 2013

Review: Allegiant

Title: Allegiant
Author: Veronica Roth
Series: Divergent #3
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Publication Date: October 22, 2013
Source: Purchased.

The faction-based society that Tris Prior once believed in is shattered—fractured by violence and power struggles and scarred by loss and betrayal. So when offered a chance to explore the world past the limits she’s known, Tris is ready. Perhaps beyond the fence, she and Tobias will find a simple new life together, free from complicated lies, tangled loyalties, and painful memories. 

But Tris’s new reality is even more alarming than the one she left behind. Old discoveries are quickly rendered meaningless. Explosive new truths change the hearts of those she loves. And once again, Tris must battle to comprehend the complexities of human nature—and of herself—while facing impossible choices about courage, allegiance, sacrifice, and love. 

Told from a riveting dual perspective, Allegiant, by #1 New York Times best-selling author Veronica Roth, brings the Divergent series to a powerful conclusion while revealing the secrets of the dystopian world that has captivated millions of readers in Divergent and Insurgent.

I almost don't even know what to say about this one. Unlike a lot of people, my lower rating is due to the middle, not the end. I liked each book in this trilogy a bit less than the previous one. Divergent - loved it! Insurgent - pretty good, but the characters started to annoy me. Allegiant - I kind of stopping caring about the characters a much about a third of the way through, which is probably why I didn't mind the ending.

My main issue with this book was the characters. Tris and Tobias really got on my nerves in the middle. Like so many of their issues could have been solved by just talking to each other instead of shouting and walking away. I realize that they are both meant to be flawed characters, but that doesn't mean I don't get to be annoyed at them!

I also felt a bit bored through the middle part of the book. I'm not sure why, there were even explosions. Maybe that was part of the problem. The book went from one high action to the next and maybe I didn't have enough time to recover from one action sequence before the next and it all blurred together. I'm not sure on that one. But it took me like a month to read this one and I read Divergent is a couple days.

I also wasn't a fan of the alternating POV. I generally don't really like this, so nothing against Veronica Roth. Although I did think it was weird to suddenly switch to alternating POV in the final book of a triology. I kind of understand it now, but I can't say I liked it.

And the ending! I'm going to try to keep this spoiler-free. I can see why some readers were angry, but I actually wasn't. Partly because I was annoyed with the main characters and had started to feel an emotional distance from them. Partly because I was prepared. I didn't have it spoiled for me, but I knew something big and bad was coming, so I think I prepared myself for that unconsciously. And finally, I like books with sad endings. One of my favourite books I read in english class was Ethan Frome, which has one of the most depressing endings I can think of.So some combination of these meant no anger, no throwing the book across the room, no screaming and, amazingly, no tears. That truly is amazing. I cry during sad country songs I've heard a hundred times (like Holes in the Floor of Heaven and Don't Take the Girl).

Overall, I though Allegiant was ok. I definitely felt like this series slipped downhill as it progressed. On it's own, I didn't think Allegiant was anything that special, but the series overall is still worth reading. Divergent is still one of my favourite books.

Find the Book:
Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository

Find the Author:
Goodreads | Twitter | Tumblr | Web

Don't Just Take My Word For It:
Burning Impossibly Bright | Novel Heartbeat | Happy Indulgence

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Cover Compare: Divergent Series

In honour of the fact that I *finally* finished Allegiant (review on Thursday), I decided to feature the Divergent series for this week's Cover Compare (sorry for missing a few lately!).

US cover
UK cover (I think)


US cover
UK cover (I think)

US cover
UK cover (I think)

Overall, I prefer the US covers. I love that the faction symbols are included and I like the city pictures on the bottom. And I love that they don't really look like any other covers around (Well, kind of like the Legend series, but). The other covers (I think they are UK, but I actually had a lot of trouble finding out) are okay, but they look like a lot of YA covers. I also feel like I'm missing some symbolism on them. What do the leaves mean? What do the feathers mean? Symbolism has always been my weakest point in English class. I also don't like that the first two are similar in colour and the third on is drastically different.

What do you think?

Friday, December 13, 2013

Review: Fangirl

Title: Fangirl
Author: Rainbow Rowell
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publication Date: September 10, 2013
Source: Purchased.

 From the author of the New York Times bestseller Eleanor & Park.

A coming-of-age tale of fan fiction, family and first love.

Cath is a Simon Snow fan.

Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan . . .

But for Cath, being a fan is her life — and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving.

Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fan fiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere.

Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to.

Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. She’s got a surly roommate with a charming, always-around boyfriend, a fiction-writing professor who thinks fan fiction is the end of the civilized world, a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words . . . And she can’t stop worrying about her dad, who’s loving and fragile and has never really been alone.

For Cath, the question is: Can she do this?

Can she make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? Writing her own stories?

And does she even want to move on if it means leaving Simon Snow behind?

The best word I can think of to describe Fangirl is: lovely. It really was a sweet read. I loved the characters and I loved the representation of fans and our fandoms. I can definitely see why this one has been so popular in the blogosphere. I think a lot of us book bloggers can relate to Cath because we've been there. At least I know I have.

Cath was a flawed but compulsively likeable character. I could definitely relate to her social anxiety, although my own is to a much lesser degree. I also loved her dedication to her love of Simon Snow, Rowell's fictional world within this contemporary book.

And Levi! He really deserves the title of "sweetheart" (if you've read it, you'll understand). He's so sweet and friendly and kind and even though he made a few mistakes, I'm glad he was able to redeem himself. Plus he's a ranch kid studying range management which gains him a heap of bonus points from this ranch kids with an unfinished degree in animal health.

There were also a couple characters that I wanted to climb into the book and shake. Wren, although she gets some redemption (with a ton of help) and Laura who I still can't help but hate.

This one is still a contemporary and I did cry in a couple spots (both in combinations of sad and frustrated). PMS probably didn't help.

Fangirl is a fun read with something to offer fans of contemporary growing up stories and fans of fantasy.

Find the Book:
Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository 

Find the Author:
Goodreads |Twitter | Web

Don't Just Take My Word For It:
The Daily Prophecy | Xpresso Reads

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

December Paranormal Reading Challenge: Other

Yikes! I can't believe it's already December 12!  definitely apologize for being so late posting this! My life has been a bit crazy the past couple weeks and blogging has fallen behind.

Anyway, this month is our Others month, so any paranormal creature that doesn't fit in any of the other categories. Examples are: Gods/goddesses, centaurs, etc. Whatever you can think of! Remember to link up below.

This month we have a prize kindly donated by author Kaitlin Bevis. She has donated an ebook of her novel Persephone, a YA read featuring gods and goddess. Thank you so much Kaitlin!

Also, I'd love to hear everyone's thoughts on the challenge. It was both Jessi and I's first time running a reading challenge and I can definitely admit that there were a few mistakes made. I'm hoping to run the challenge again next year with a few improvements! I'd really like to hear everyone thoughts and whether or not you'd be interesting in participating next year. Thanks!