April Recap

May 2, 2016 Monthly Recap 22

Apr-Wrap-Up

My Goings On in April:

  • Our homeschool co-op performed their end of the year performances, including a performance of a play that I wrote! I thought it turned out great – the kids did a fantastic job with it, and I plan to do more writing for our co-op in the future!
  • Our family signed up to host a teenage girl from Spain for three works during the summer. We did this five years ago with a girl from France, and it was a great experience for our whole family, so we’re looking forward to sharing our home again this year!
  • My daughter tentatively joined an Excel team for gymnastics. She had gotten really burned out with 12 hours of practice a week year-round. The Excel team is only 6 hours per week (only two nights), so it’s much more doable. Hopefully this will be better for all of us.
  • I finished a first edit for Jayden Abello of her debut book, Breaking the BandI also completed two proofreads for Booktrope, but the company is now going out of business, so I won’t actually make any money on pretty much any of the projects I’ve worked on for them. Sigh. (Things weren’t going well with that little experiment anyway, and I was ready to call it quits, so I’m not all that upset that the company is closing its doors – still a little frustrating, but such is life!)
  • My husband and I binge watched the whole first season of Jessica Jones, which we both really loved! We also continued our bingeing of Chuck and I finally made it into the current season of Once Upon a Time (the show I watch while I’m on the elliptical – which I try to do at least every other day).
  • I participated in ARC April and read six books toward the challenge (click here if you want to see what they were).
  • My guest post about hosting a successful meme or challenge was posted over at 125 Pages as part of Laura’s blogoversary celebration. If you haven’t read it, go check it out! (There’s a giveaway involved!)

Most Popular Posts:

The April Discussion Challenge Link-Up and Giveaway – This challenge is still going strong!!

The Series Dilemma – Let’s Discuss

A Change in Focus – Let’s Discuss – This was my April Fools’ joke here on the blog. I love April Fools’, so I’m really glad that lots of people visited it!

Other Features & Discussions:

A Completely Useless (but kind of fun) Bookish Infographic – A silly discussion about my love of fiction over non-fiction cloaked in a pretty infographic!

BEA is Coming Soon! What You Need to Know. (BEA Tips) – I’ve been updating this regularly with new links, so check it out if you’re attending!

Meet My Mom! – I finally convinced my mom to join me here on the blog, so this is an introduction to her.

Do Author Bios Ever Make You Want to Read a Book? Let’s Discuss!

April Wrap-Up Round-Up Link-Up – Still time to link up your April recap posts! Watch for the giveaway, which will be posted on 125 Pages on May 8th!

  My 2016 Reading Progress:

As you can see, my books tend to fall mostly in the four and five star zone (this includes 3.5 stars, though). I’m having a good reading year!

April-Reading-Progress

April 2016 Reviews

I got caught up on reviews in April and did quite a bit of reading. Reviews of 21 books went up!

Here’s a recap:

Romancing-the-NerdInto-the-DimTuck-EverlastingIsland-of-the-Blue-DolphinsOnce-Upon-a-DreamMirror-KingGods-of-Anthem

  • Romancing the Nerd by Leah Rae Miller | Review | Rating: 3.5/5
  • Into the Dim by Janet B. Taylor | Review | Rating: 3/5
  • Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt | Review | Rating: 5/5
  • Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell | Review | Rating: 3.5/5
  • Once Upon a Dream by Liz Braswell | Review | Rating: 4/5
  • The Mirror King by Jodi Meadows | Review | Rating: 5/5
  • Gods of Anthem by Logan Keys | Review | Rating: 4/5
Daydreamer-DetectiveRice-Cooker-Revenge_SmallerWashing-Statue-WanderlustMamachari-MatchmakerForever-SummerParadise-RoadRevenge-and-the-Wild
  • The Daydreamer Detective by S.J. Pajonas | Review | Rating: 4/5
  • Rice Cooker Revenge, Washing Statue Wanderlust and Mamachari Matchmaker by S.J. Pajonas | Review | Rating: 4/5
  • Forever Summer by CJ Duggan| Review | Rating: 5/5
  • Paradise Road by CJ Duggan| Review | Rating: 3.5/5
  • Revenge and the Wild by Michelle Modesto | Review | Rating: 4/5
Soundless-SmallerReady-Player-OneBurning-GlassDaring-SacrificeHex-HallDemon-Glass
  • Soundless by Richelle Mead | Review | Rating: 4/5
  • Ready Player One by Ernest Cline | Review | Rating: 5/5
  • Burning Glass by Kathryn Purdie | Review | Rating: 2/5
  • A Daring Sacrifice by Jody Hedlund | Review | Rating: 3.5/5
  • Down with the Shine by Kate Karyus Quinn | Review | Rating: 4/5
  • Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins | Review | Rating: 4.5/5
  • Demonglass by Rachel Hawkins | Review | Rating: 4.5/5
Spell-Bound
  • Spell Bound by Rachel Hawkins | Review | Rating: 4/5

My Favorite April Read:

There were three books that I LOVED this month and marked as all-time favorites (The Mirror King, Ready Player One, and Forever Summer), so it was tough to choose. I kept going back and forth, but I finally landed on Ready Player One because it’s so unique and I feel like it’s going to have a much more lasting impression than the other two.

Ready Player One

Reading Challenges:

2016-Discussion-Challenge

Status: 15/49 Discussions posted

I had a little bit of a harder time deciding which posts to count as part of the discussion challenge this month because some of my posts were sort of borderline discussions. In the end, I decided to include my infographic (since it has LOTS of text) and my BEA tips post, but not include my intro to my mom. I think it works – I’m going with it.

Do Author Bios Ever Make You Want to Read a Book?
BEA is Coming Soon! What You Need to Know. (BEA Tips)

A Completely Useless (but kind of fun) Bookish Infographic

The Series Dilemma – Let’s Discuss

Sometimes You Just Need to Disappear for a Little While
How Much Do You Read?
The Fine Line Between “Inspired By” and “Copycat”
Can Book Blogging Lead to a Job

Some Books Just Aren’t All That Memorable
Books that Intimidate Us
2015 End of Year Book Survey
Replying to Comments on Older Posts
What Blogging Has Done to My Bookshelves
What Type of YA MC Would You Be?
Culling the TBR

HOST/SIGN-UP LINK – Feed Your Fiction Addiction & It Starts at Midnight

Unique Format Challenge

Status: 1/5 Books Read

Yeah, none of the books I read this month really fit this challenge. Sigh. I need to be more deliberate and read something specifically geared toward the challenge in May!

 
HOST/SIGN-UP LINK – Shooting Stars Mag

diverse challenge1

Status: 7/12 Books Read

Four books I reviewed this month DEFINITELY fit this challenge!

Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell featured Native American culture and main characters.
The Daydreamer Detective by S.J. Pajonas was set in Japan and featured Japanese main characters (and the three short stories I reviewed did as well, but I didn’t count those toward the goal!)
Revenge and the Wild by Michelle Modesto featured a very diverse cast of characters!
Soundless by Richelle Mead featured characters of Chinese descent and a fantasy culture based on Chinese culture

In addition to these, I read two books that I didn’t count toward the challenge because it wasn’t the MC or main love interest who represented diversity (which was a criteria I set for myself when I went into this challenge), but I still want to point these out for people who are looking for diverse reads:

Ready Player One would be considered a diverse read because two of the major secondary characters are Japanese. Then there are some details you find out about another one of the major characters. I don’t want to reveal them to people who haven’t read the book, but click the spoiler tag if you’ve read it or you don’t mind being spoiled. View Spoiler ».

Sophie’s best friend in the Hex Hall series is gay.

HOST/SIGN-UP LINK – Chasing Faerytales & Read Sleep Repeat

ShelfLove-Challenge-2016

Status: 7/21-30 Books Read

Soundless by Richelle Mead
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
Paradise Road by CJ Duggan – I’m breaking a personally-set rule with this one because I wasn’t planning on counting ebooks, but in this case I’m counting it because it’s a book by a beloved author that I’ve been meaning to read and I purchased the book last year.

HOST/SIGN-UP LINK – Chapter Break, Second Run Reviews & Bookworm Brandee

seriesmonth

Status: 3/12 Series Finished

I listened to all three books in the Hex Hall series this month!

HOST/SIGN-UP LINK – Love at First Page

SeriesStarterChallenge

Status: 1/6 New Series

I joined a new challenge!! This challenge is perfect for me because I’m trying to catch up on some series that I’ve been hearing about for a long time, but I haven’t jumped on board yet. Since I just joined now, I’m only officially counting the series I just finished and reviewed the day before yesterday (Hex Hall).

But for my own curiosity’s sake, I went back and checked what other books would fall into this challenge as well – and here are the two I found!

The Others Series by Anne Bishop
Air Awakens by Elise Kova (I definitely plan to continue this series!)
A Daring Sacrifice by Jody Hedlund

HOST/SIGN-UP LINK – Lisa Loves Literature

Wrap-Up Round-Up!

Don’t forget to link your April wrap-up posts up to the Monthly Wrap-Up Round-Up! And watch for the giveaway, which will be posted on 125 Pages on May 8th!

2016-Monthly-Wrap-Up-Round-Up320

 

 

22 Responses to “April Recap”

  1. Kristen @ Metaphors and Moonlight

    You wrote a play and it got performed?! That must’ve been so fun for you to watch! And that’s cool that you’re hosting someone from Spain. When I was in high school, one of my best friend’s family’s did that.

    Sorry to hear your daughter is getting burned out :-/ It does get tougher as you get older and have more things going on, like school and friends and all that. What is the Excel team though? I’m just curious.

    It does seem like you’ve had a great reading year so far! I think I’ve also had mostly 3.5 and 4 stars 🙂

  2. ShootingStarsMag

    That’s so exciting that the play you wrote was performed by the kids and it went well. How fun you are hosting a Spanish teen over the summer! I hope it’s a great experience. In high school, my sister had a French girl stay with us for two weeks and then my sister went to France and stayed with her family for two weeks. It was great!! We’re still in touch with her via facebook, so that’s nice.

    -Lauren

  3. S. J. Pajonas

    It was a super great month for you! Congratulations on all the hard work and everything else that paid off. I especially loved a lot of the reviews this month, along with bringing your mom on board. Also excited about Jayden’s book. I read it in its rough state a few months ago and it had a lot of potential.

  4. Micheline @ Lunar Rainbows Reviews

    Sounds like you had a busy but productive April Nicole! Good for you! YAY for Ready Player One and Jessica Jones!! ♥ Love both of those 😀 And way to go with all the reading you got done too!! Have a wonderful May! xx

  5. Lisa Mandina (Lisa Loves Literature)

    Yay! So glad to have you join into my challenge! And I think you should definitely count any books you’ve read this year for the challenge, even if they were before you signed up. I mean then you can enter them into the link up for the giveaway!

  6. Kaja

    Wow, it looks like you’re having a really good reading year! 🙂 That’s always nice to see.

    Congrats on the performance and your kids’ acting achievements! We’re quite a long way from having any sort of end-of-year performances with Kiddo but I always liked these shows, the kids take them so seriously and they can be real works of art if the mentors know what they’re doing.

    And yeah, Jesica Jones is pretty binge-able. I hope the next season comes soon, I liked it a lot.

    Have a great May! 🙂

  7. Joy // Joyousreads

    I’m so glad you loved Ready Player One. I hope you’ll enjoy Armada as well. Different scenarios, but awesome nonetheless.

    Have a fantastic May!

  8. Cynthia @ Bingeing On Books

    That sounds like a great experience to host a girl from Spain. How fun! I’m sorry about Booktrope. Kind of sucks that you put in so much work for nothing, but oh well. I love Once Upon a Time, but I have to say that a nice Regina is a bit boring. I love villains!

    Cynthia @ Bingeing On Books recently posted: April Wrap-Up
  9. irena_bookdustmagic

    That’s a bummer, to hear that Booktrope is closing it’s door and that you wouldn’t get paid for your work. :/
    I can see you had some pretty good reading month. You read so many books! 🙂
    I hope that, in the summer when the girl from Spain that will be at your home for three months, you will have a good time and that it will be a rememberable experience.

  10. Cilla

    I hope you enjoy having the Spanish girl in your home! I lived with a host family when I first moved to Australia, and it’s a relationship/experience I treasure for life. You’ve got a lot of great discussion posts up – I really need to catch up on them! I hope May is treating you well!

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