September Wrap-Up!

OK, seriously, I'm pretty sure I wrote my summer wrap-up last week.  Surely it can't have been a month ago!  I'm in complete disbelief that it's nearly October.  I didn't read nearly as much this month, but it was also a pretty busy month with not as much free time.

The Books

Books Read: 7 (Among the Barons, Small Great Things, Among the Brave, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, North of Normal, Finnikin of the Rock)
Actually seven books in a month isn't that bad!  Three of these books were very short middle grade novels, and one and a half were audiobooks.

Books Acquired: 2 (Empire of Storms and Burning Kingdoms)
I thought I'd dive into EoS right away, but now that I have it in my hands I'm enjoying the anticipation.

The Challenges

Prequel & Sequel Challenge: +8 (Among the Barons, Harry Potter, Among the Brave and Among the Enemy) 
TBR Challenge: +4 (Among the Barons, Among the Brave, Harry Potter, Finnikin of the Rock, Among the Enemy)
Around the Year in 52 Books: 2 more challenges completed:
  • A book from the Rory Gilmore Challenge (Harry Potter & the Goblet of Fire)
  • A book by an author you should have read by now (Finnikin of the Rock)

The Blog

I started the month off with my September TBR and finished the month off my reading exactly zero of the books that I had planned to read.  My reasoning is this: the weather was so beautiful and sunny and warm during September that I ended up craving different types of books!  Hopefully, I can find the time to get to those two books, since both of them are on my fall TBR list.  I also shared a list of my favourite books of all time, and shared my first first "on my nightstand" post since June!  Oh, and I reviewed a book!  Diplomatic Immunity was a fun contemporary with heart, and definitely worth a read.

The Other Stuff

We moved into our temporary rental on September 9th, and said a bittersweet goodbye to our condo on the 12th.  Although I'm excited about moving to a new home, we made so many incredible memories in that condo.  It will always be remembered as our first home, where we got engaged, married, pregnant and where Marko spent the first three and half years of his life.  It was even tough saying goodbye to our neighbours in the building -- such a great community, and I felt honoured to call it my home.  I'm also looking forward to making more memories and new friends in our new place -- it's onwards and upwards for this family =)

Our rental place is cute, and we're really close to an amazing park.  Having beautiful weather in September equaled lots of evening park time, with views like this:

Seriously, with no exaggeration, this photo was taken a block away from where I'm living, and it was taken with my iPhone, with no filters or fancy apps.  I'm in awe of where we're living, and fully plan to enjoy every minute of this time.

Work is work, and has had its busy moments, but also some downtime to catch up on organizational projects and filing.  I must be the only employee every to be geeky about the filing system, and excited about my "Master Filing List" spreadsheet -- but it's what I love to do.

As much fun as September has been, I'm looking forward to lots of great adventures in October.  I'm flying to Toronto for the Thanksgiving long weekend for one of my best friends' wedding.  Super excited to be with her on her big day, but also nervous about being away from home without my boys for five whole days?  SUPER excited for all the plane reading time though.

How was your summer?  Let me know in the comments below, and thank you so much for stopping by =)

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On My Nightstand - September 28

Recently shelved as read:

Wow, the last time I shared one of these posts, I was currently reading Lady Midnight!  I know now why I haven't written one of these posts in a while, since I normally write one as soon as I've moved onto a new book.  I have read many, many books since I picked up Lady Midnight, but haven't actually finished Lady Midnight just yet.  My most recently read book, however, is Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.  I started rereading this series on audio a few months ago ... May perhaps?  I've been absolutely LOVING the series on audio, and I feel like I'm rediscovering it again after so many years.  I didn't think I'd end up finishing it this year, but I think there's a good chance that I actually might get to the next three books before Christmas!  Two hours in my car each day really adds up.

On my nightstand:

There's too many books to count on my nightstand right now *hides face in hands*  I'm a reading disaster.  I'm buddy reading Finnikin of the Rock with Jessica @ Novel Cravings, which I'm liking but not loving just yet.  I started reading it on audio instead of the print version, now that I'm between Harry Potter books.  I set it down over the weekend to read another one of the Among the Hidden series because it was due back at the library, and then picked up book 6 in that series as well, feeling like maybe I should just read the last two books quickly and be done with it.  But then I also realized that I have book club next week, and I should be reading THAT book.  So, currently, I have four books on my "currently reading" shelf on Goodreads (the shame, the shame, the shame...).

Calling my name from the shelf:

I'm going to Toronto to be a bridesmaid for one of my bestest friends in the whole wide world, and I leave next Wednesday.  I'm hoping to finish up all my half-read books and then this beast is coming on the plane with me.  My flight leaves at an ungodly hour of the morning, so I might be too tired to read, but it's a long day of travel, so I can hopefully get some reading done!

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Top Seven Books On My Fall TBR Pile

Brrrr.... fall is here and I LOVE IT.  Summer is my least favourite season because I don't like being hot and sweaty.  This past summer wasn't too bad heat-wise, as we had a few hot weeks during the summer but it wasn't unbearably hot.  Summery weather has me craving contemporaries, but as soon as the weather shifts to fall, those crisp, cool nights just beg for a different kind of read.

Here are the books that I'm hoping to get to this fall...

1. The Young Elites by Marie Lu
I tried to read this one last year, but I was in an awful book slump so I set it aside.  I loved her Legend series, and know that I will love this one too.  I even ordered book two in order to get free shipping with Crooked Kingdom!

2. Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo
Because OF COURSE.

3. Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas
See above.

4. Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas
This book has sat on my shelves unread for way too freakin' long.

5. Unraveling by Elizabeth Norris
See above.

6. Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta
Jessica @ Novel Cravings and I are reading this one together ... I'm cheating a little by putting a book that I'm currently reading on my list at the time of writing the list, but doesn't everyone write "Make list" on a to-do list, just so that you can cross something off just as soon as you've finished making the list?

7. Burn by Julianna Baggott
This was the one series that I absolutely planned to knock off my TBR list this year, and time's running out for me to achieve that goal!

I did quite well with my summer TBR list of seven, so I think I'll stick with that number for fall too!  I'll even see if I can tackle the last couple of books left on my summer TBR as well, since one of them (Beautiful Disaster) is one of the books left on my 16 books to read in 2016 list.

Have you read any of these books?  What's on your TBR list for the fall?  Let me know in the comments below, and thank you for stopping by =)

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Top Ten Favourite Books of All Time

Top Ten Tuesday is, as always, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.  You guys, I haven't participated in Top Ten Tuesday since JUNE.  That's crazy!  I've already started planning my fall TBR list and, when I saw this week's topic, I just knew that I had to participate.

Condensing my favourites list down to ten is nearly impossible, so I'm going to do this a little bit differently.  I'm just going to list off the first ten favourites that come to mind!  So, here goes...

1. White Oleander by Janet Fitch
2. The Neverending Story by Michael Ende
3. The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
4. The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
5. Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver
6. The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson
7. The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo
8. Eyes of the Dragon by Stephen King
9. Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
10. Wonder by R.J. Palacio

See any of your favourites on my list?

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Diplomatic Immunity - Brodi Ashton

I read and loved Everneath shortly after starting this blog.  I still look back fondly on my reading experience of that book because I went in blind, not knowing what the story was about at all.  I ended up LOVING it and losing myself in the story during a ferry ride back to Victoria.  Honestly, it shocks me that I never ended up finishing the series, but I would definitely start with re-reading the first book.

I've been very selective about my ARCs this, and have only downloaded a couple of Harper's titles on Edelweiss.  I was so proud of myself for finishing all of my finished review copies too, so I treated myself one evening by logging into Edelweiss to see what new titles were available.  When I saw Brodi's name, I took a chance on this book, and I'm so glad that I did.

If you've read the Everneath series, please know that this book is nothing like that series.  It's a cute contemporary story that reminded me a little of Top Ten Clues You're Clueless or Anna and the French Kiss.  I like my contemporaries with a side of heart and this story was both sweet and genuine.  Nothing felt forced or contrived, and I have the utmost respect for a contemporary writer that can pull that off.

Diplomatic Immunity is sweet (but won't rot your teeth) and cute (but won't make you roll your eyes aloud).  Highly recommend picking this one up!

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September TBR!

I've been rockin' most of my TBR lists so far this year, so let's see if I can keep it up =)  The weather has been beautiful and sunny for most of August, but turned to rain and clouds as soon as the month came to an end.  Colder rainy days result in me yearning for a different kind of read, and these are the two calling my name from the shelf ... er, the box of books that's packed and ready to go!

I've had Dangerous Girls on my shelves for over three years, and I've seen a few pictures on Instagram lately featuring this book.  It's on my list of 16 books to read in 2016 as well, and I've only read six of the books so far this year!  I started The Young Elites last year, during my epic book slump, but put it down because I just wasn't in the mood.  Again, Instagram has featured a number of people receiving packages for the series finale, which rekindled my interest in reading this book.  It's another of my list of titles to read this year.  If I can read both of these books this month, I'll actually be halfway through my list!

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