Friday, August 10, 2007

The Time Has Come...

It's been a while since I've updated any of my reading challenges. And I have a feeling if I wait any longer it will be nightmarish. So here it is already pretty daunting to think about.

For this challenge, The Something About Me Challenge, I have read So Many Books So Little Time by Sara Nelson, All I Really Need To Know I Learned In Kindergarten by Robert Fulghum, and the Gallery of Regrettable Food by James Lileks. So far, I've loved two of the three. (And liked the other one just okay). I have two more books I'll need to complete by the deadline. I'm leaning towards Pride & Prejudice at the moment. And the fifth I'm still not quite sure. Books I listed as choices or alternates include: Lord of the Rings, Peter Pan, Number the Stars, Tale of Desperaux, Dune, or Secret Life of Bees. I will not attempt to read all of those books. I simply haven't got the time.

In The Armchair Traveler Challenge, we're supposed to read six books by December 31, 2007. I've already read the minimum of six: Thorn In My Heart by Liz Curtis Higgs, Fair is the Rose by Liz Curtis Higgs, Whence Came A Prince by Liz Curtis Higgs, Hitler's Canary by Sandi Toksvig, Tasting the Sky by Ibtisam Barakat, Broken Moon by Kim Antieau. The first three reviews can be found at Becky's Christian Reviews. The last three were reviewed right here. Alternates that I may still read if I have the time include Grace In Thine Eyes by Liz Curtis Higgs, Dawn and Dusk by Alice Mead, and Rickshaw Girl by Mitali Perkins.

The Saturday Review Challenge is also one that requires six books by December 31, 2007. I believe I have read five: The Wednesday Wars by Gary Schmidt, Hitler's Canary by Sandi Toksvig, Leepike Ridge by N.D. Wilson, Austenland by Shannon Hale, and The Measure of a Lady by Deeanne Gist. My sixth choice will be Book Of A Thousand Days by Shannon Hale.

The Dystopian Challenge goes through November 6th, I believe, although with all these dates in my head it can sometimes be wise to doublecheck. I have read many books for this challenge including: Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury, The Worthing Saga by Orson Scott Card, The Time Machine by H.G. Well, The Giver by Lois Lowry, Gathering Blue by Lois Lowry, Messenger by Lois Lowry, Uglies by Scott Westerfeld, Pretties by Scott Westerfeld, Specials by Scott Westerfeld, City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau, People of Sparks by Jeanne DuPrau, Prophet of Yonwood by Jeanne DuPrau, and Among the Hidden by Margaret Peterson Haddix. I still need to complete the rest of the Shadow Children series by Margaret Peterson Haddix. And I'd like to read Extras by Scott Westerfeld.

I've only read two of the twelve books I've selected for the Book Awards Challenge. I've read The Life and Death of Adolf Hitler by James Cross Giblin and Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card. You can find my whole list of choices and alternates here. This challenge lasts for quite a while.

The Summer Reading Thing is a challenge ending soon--September 22nd. That might not fit some people's definition of soon. But it is a reminder to me of how far I have to go to finish these books. I've read eleven of the twenty I'd listed. I haven't posted reviews for all of those eleven. Here are the ones I've read: Enter Three Witches, Hitler's Canary, Salome, The Rising Star of Rusty Nail, The Society of Super Secret Heroes: The Great Cape Rescue, Leepike Ridge, Cassie Was Here, Tasting the Sky, The Fabled Fourth Graders of Aesop Elementary School, Bad Tickets, and At the Firefly Gate. All of these are 2007 books so you can find them linked in the sidebar. I've decided to cross Converting Kate off my list. (We just weren't clicking.) But I should eventually finish most of the rest. It may not be by by September 22nd. We'll have to wait and see. Anyway, here's my original listing.


Dewey 4:17 PM  

I have to deal with challenge updating this weekend, too. It's hard to keep organized!

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Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
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  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

You should know several things before you contact me:

1) I do not guarantee a review of your book. I am just agreeing to consider it for review.
2) I give all books at least fifty pages.
3) I am not promising anyone (author or publisher) a positive review in exchange for a review copy. That's not how I work.
4) In all of my reviews I strive for honesty. My reviews are my opinions--so yes, they are subjective--you should know my blog will feature both negative and positive reviews.
5) I do not guarantee that I will get to your book immediately. I've got so many books I'm trying to read and review, I can't promise to get to any one book in a given time frame.
6) Emailing me every other week to see if I've read your book won't help me get to it any faster. Though if you want to email me to check and see if it arrived safely, then that's fine!

Authors, publishers. I am interested in interviewing authors and participating in blog tours. (All I ask is that I receive a review copy of the author's latest book beforehand so the interview will be productive. If the book is part of a series, I'd like to review the whole series.) Contact me if you're interested.

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