The Hunger Games


As I’ve said before, work has been crazy lately and I’ve realized that lately the only free time to relax I have is while I’m driving from one place to another. So it’s time to dust up my audiobook collection.

I’ve been thinking about the advantages of modern technology when it comes to enjoying audiobooks, and I think the best way to break in my new phone (the one I had to buy out of necessity… stupid phones that break down even when you treat them nicely!) is to start a new one.

So… Catching Fire it is. Hopefully, I can make some progress with my goal for this year and check mark another book series my list.

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Reminiscing about my first time…

There is a saying in Spanish:

“Todos hablan de la Feria, como les va en ella”.

It means our experiences shape our opinion of things. And, apparently, audiobooks are an excellent example for this. Some time back, I stumbled upon On Trying to Love Audiobooks by accident, and it just dug into my brain and took residence there.

I simply haven’t been able to stop thinking about it, trying to remember my first experience with audiobooks. It honestly took some thinking, but I’m pretty sure it was while I was living abroad.

I used to spend a lot of time commuting, stuck inside crowded subway and surrounded by people speaking a language I couldn’t understand. At first, I tried putting some music into my phone. That didn’t work.

I had an old fashion phone that collapsed every time I tried to play some music in it. I ended up buying the cheapest MP3 player I could find. And while trying to find something interesting to load in it, I stumbled into audiobooks.

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone

At first, it was a matter of being stuck in a too-squished-and-uncomfortable-to-read-an-actual-book kind of situation so I would turn to my audiobook. Even so, music was the top choice most of the times.

But, then… there was Stephen Fry reading Harry Potter to me. I don’t think I have ever encountered a better narrated book since. It just made me feel like I was actually in the middle of the story!

I was hooked!

I keep searching for a book narration that drags me into a whole new world again. It is a whole other experience than when you read a book by yourself.

I guess my love for audiobooks owes a lot to the age of MP3’s. As Allison’s experience proves, things could have been very different had I tried audiobooks a couple of years earlier.

A Gathering of Shadows

5/5
It took me moths to finally finish A Gathering of Shadows, but it wasn’t for a lack of interest… i assure you.

A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab

Instead, the only reason I put it down was the crazy insane project that suddenly landed on my hands around the same time I was getting ready to finish this book.

When I finally found an opportunity to focus my mind on this story again, I had to go back a few chapters to get on the same excited mood I was when I was forced to leave it. It wasn’t difficult.

This is a amazingly exciting story. I can honestly say I liked this one better that the previous one. It is simply packed with more wonderful displays of magic than the first one in the series. Not only about this girl that’s supposed to have no magic discovering all the thing she hadn’t thought were possible, but also the more in-depth view we get to Rhy and that’s before we get to the whole magical battle cage contest!

And that ending!! Oh. My. God!

(And I don’t say that lightly)

I was still holding my breath when I immediately switched to A Conjuring of Light. Bless my crazy ideas of purchasing books by sets!

A Conjuring of Light by V.E. Schwab

 

And, of course, I blew through the first chapters like crazy trying to keep up with my own excitement. It has been a while since I had that feeling. It was awesome. If the ending of book two and the beginning of book three are any indication, I’m going to absolutely love this one.

I’m trying to tamp down my expectations, so I don’t build it up too much before really getting into it, but I make no promises. This is, after all, the end of the story… As far as I know.  So, it is completely understandable that I would expect something way more amazing from this one book than from the previous tow put together. Don’t you think so? Isn’t that the standard?

What do you think?

Isn’t that the point of sequels?

The Lunar Chronicles

Fairest by Marissa Meyer

I absolutely loved The Lunar Chronicles, all of them. It is one of my favorite series of recent years. So, of course, Fairest has been on the list for quite a while now… but as I don’t expect to see any Iko at all, and very little Cinder if any at all… it wasn’t moved to the top at all.

Well, now it is due. And I’m really looking forward to it. There should be a good dose of royal and family drama. Almost like watching  a new season of The Crown…

…but on the moon…

… and with mind powers…

… and without Prime Ministers.

So… nothing like The Crown, I imagine.

The Girl at Midnight series

I still have a long flight to go. Who says there is t a bright side to transoceanic flight? You get a lot of uninterrupted reading time?? What can be better?

Just adding coffee? They do that, too.

The Shadow Hour by Melissa Grey

So, let get in with it. If I remember right, turns out that the mysterious object the main character was actually searching for was herself and the self-awareness that she has the power to bring and end to the long war between two species.

So, this should be interesting.

The Alex Craft series

Grave Visions by Kalayna Price

Winter rush is finally subsiding…

I knew it definitely when I finally managed to spend a whole Sunday cozy and happy on a couch with my e-reader and a cup of coffee.

So, now I’m happy to start doubling up on the books I’m currently reading. Maybe this way I’ll see more progress on my Books Read list.

And let’s get to it, with Grave Visions. With some more magic, plus some detective work and a pinch of good romantic drama to make things more interesting.

if I remember correctly, the lover she cannot trust just moved in with Alex under the orders of his Fae queen, and she and her best friend/inherited property are starting to work together in the P.I. new office, with a ghost as a partner and a strange kind-of-a-house-elf as a receptionist.

This should be entertaining. Right?

Shades of Magic

A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab

A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab

A thief and a magician…

This is the second book of the series, Shades of Magic, after A Darker Shade of Magic.

If I remember right, we are talking about a one-of-a-kind magician, with a black eye that marks him as powerful… who can travel to other worlds!

And a thief who escapes her boring grey world in search of adventure and greatness.

Last thing I remember, they managed to defeat invading magicians and vanished a powerful and dangerous magic stone to a sealed world, attached to a death body.

Am I forgetting anything? Let’s back to it, then.

A Fire Beneath the Skin

Starting with the right foot…

A Painted Goddess by Victor Gischler

A Painted Goddess by Victor Gischler

Third book in the series.

Hopefully, all the build up from the last one will finally pay out and I’ll get more action, magic and actual moving the story forward.

If I remember correctly, the last we heard, the Duchess was a prisoner of the last remnants of a defeated invading army; her wizard friend was on a mission to a magnificent library in search of magic books; the captain of her guard is on another mission to find a wizard that might or might not have more knowledge about the magic tattoos that now cover the Duchess body; and, the priest, new friend to the Duchess, was supposed to try and rescue her.

Ok. I think that’s it. Lets dive in.

 

Serial bookworm

The second week of the year is well an truly over, and I’m barely starting to sort through my mess of books, in the hopes that one will simply call to me…

Maybe something with dragons, or magic… Something totally surreal and out there to take my mind out of everything remotely real… 

And then I started to notice something. There are book series everywhere!

book-series Here.

And here

This one, too.

And this one!

They’re everywhere! What’ up with that?

I know I’ve said it before, but I hadn’t realize how few of my book are actually stand-alone stories. Even some that I thought were stand-alones, aren’t anymore. How crazy is that?

As many book addicts out there, I have a tremendously long list of books waiting to be read. A list that keeps on growing way faster than I can actually read them. Usually, when I hear of a book that might-could-possibly-maybe-likely to be interesting… I add it to the CHECK ‘EM OUT list I keep in my bullet journal.

From there, I look them up and stay on the lookout for those titles every time I visit the bookstore (be it at the mall, or the digital kind). Once I get my hands on them, I add them to another list I keep of all the books I want to read… that’s my actual TO BE READ list, and that’s how it grows and grows non-stop.

So… this is where I come to this year’s reading goal:

Clear up my to-be-read list from all book series.

Starting with the already-started ones and then moving on from there, until it takes some searching to find a book part of a series in the first 50 names my list.

That’s the goal… Let’s get to it!

Technicalities

Definitely! There are some books that are more suited for listening to than others, and that’s just a fact.

2312 by Kim Stanley Robinson

2312 by Kim Stanley Robinson

Most of the times, I can let my mind wander about through the eyes of a main character, across strange lands, meeting interesting people and living a completely different life. And that’s my thing… Let my mind fly away while my body is stuck here doing monotonous and boring chores.

But 2312, has way too many new words, easily mixed up names, too long words that I had never heard before, and strange and bizarre places that bring up concepts that require all of my attention and maybe a dictionary on hand. Maybe not the most appropriate book for listening to.

And I do find it quite interesting, and I’m looking forward to know what Alex was working on that was such a secret…

Truthwitch by Susan Dennard

Truthwitch by Susan Dennard

The search for the print book has already begun. Hopefully, it won’t take more that what’s left of the year.

In the meantime, let’s try some magic. Witches to be precise.

Truthwitch by Susan Dennard.

How cool would it be to always know when someone is lying to you? I think that would be a superpower that could be very useful.

… On second thought… I think I would rather believe it when people tell me I don’t look fat wearing my most comfortable pair of jeans, regardless of what the truth actually is.

Feeling touchy

Graceling by Kristin Cashore

Graceling by Kristin Cashore

I don’t think anyone could have imagined 100 years ago that we would be able to carry our books in our pockets. My dad is still often amazed over the sheer amount of books I carry everywhere in my eBook reader.

And he is not even aware of the amount of computer storage I use for my audiobooks.

But still, like I’m sure every book lover out there, I sometimes simply crave the feel and smell of an actual paper book. The whole thing is a completely different experience.

And while it does bring a lot of drawbacks, specially when my purse is not big enough to carry my book everywhere I go… I am in the mood for some of the traditional and deliciously classic reading experience. So, I went to my actual wooden bookshelf, and picked the first book from the top, and I got Graceling by Kristin Cashore.

(Yes. My books are sorted by order I which I apwant to read them.)

If I remember correctly, I got this book for the shelves at work. (Yes! We finally upgraded from a big pile of books to actual bookshelves.) And I picked it all for the cover. Isn’t that a simply beautiful cover? And he gold letters! I loved it. It is beautiful.

Let’s see if the insides match the outsides…

 

Back to the future 

2312 by Kim Stanley Robinson

2312 by Kim Stanley Robinson

I insist! Audiobooks are the best company you can get while you’re doing all the household chores. You need to dust? Mop? Clean the bathroom? Plug on the headphones and let your mind flow away from you to a whole different world!

This is my life philosophy.

So, while I do all the chores that have been pushed and dragged to the weekend, let my imagination take me away to the future, when I won’t have to do any of this again and we will all have self-cleaning houses, bathrooms, clothes and even pets!

I don’t know if 2312 by Kim Stanley Robinson will take me quite there, but I’m always intrigued by the future and all the things and event our imaginations foresee for the decades to come.

Some more…

Specimen by Shay Savage

Specimen by Shay Savage

 

I’m still feeling in the mood for some non-sequential stories.
Not that I don’t enjoy a good book series as much as the next person, but it does feel like all books are part of a series lately. Don’t you think so?

So, Specimen by Shay Savage. One more Savage book, and a stand-alone one.

Also, something a little but more blush-inducing and grown-up. If I remember correctly, this is supposed to be way more erotic than other ones, so what better to take my mind out of all other nonsense that has been plaguing me lately. Right?

Way back when…

A week or two ago, Shay Savage, released a new book: Win Some, Lose Some.

Win Some, Lose Some by Shay Savage

Win Some, Lose Some by Shay Savage

I remember reading online about this release ahead of time, and even remember writing it down in my planner, but it still caught me a bit by surprise. I was still in the middle of The Queen of the Damned, but I really wanted to read this one… So I added it to the top of my To-read list.

And here we are now.

I remember reading this story when it was just fanfiction, and I’m really looking forward to seeing how this story evolved and grew up into its own book. It was already one of my favorite Shay Savage stories, so I’m already half in-love with it.

Sooner rather than later

ttd

The Tattooed Duchess by Victor Gischler

 

I got lucky, and was able to find part two of A Fire Beneath the Skin series: The Tattooed Duchess. I’m really looking forward to know more about Rina Veraiin and how she manages her newly acquire powers. Maybe she’ll get more tattoos and rub her power on the face of the King who refused her help.

Or maybe she’ll just squash her enemies and go back to her everyday life as the new Duchess.

Let’s find our, shall we?

 

Recap: Last we knew, Rina had taken back her castle with the help of the Gypsies and almost died in the process. With a couple of debts owed for the tattooed she got, she is now and Ink Mage.