Sunday, November 3

October Wrap-Up!

And October is over. There's about 59 days left and the year is over. Yikes! Anyone else in disbelief like myself? At least October has been a fantastic reading month. It's been library book month, my poor books on my own shelves probably feel neglected. But, I've been concentrating on to reading projects, and I decided that both my wallet and shelves would be grateful if I relied more on the library this month.

The Books

This has probably been my best month in the amount I read - as I read 16 books this month. I' read a few fantastic books this month and a lot of books that didn't work for me at all - so I seemed to read a lot, but didn't like a lot of what I read. I did read a handful of books I'd never have read, hadn't it been for the Giller List, which was what I mainly concentrated on this month and my own Jules Book Review Prize list. And so far this year's Giller list just isn't doing much for me. I haven't really found the book I love yet. I've enjoyed a few, but there hasn't been "that must read" book for me yet. This month was also both heavy with CanLit and Library Books. My library card was heavily used this month, all but three books came from the library. 

My favourite book of the month was Beauty Beneath the Banyan - and it's a book I'd highly recommend you read. And Then There Were None came to a close second. My least favourite book was The Son of a Certain Woman followed by Going Home Again.

1. Surprise Island - Gertrude Chandler Warner - 7/10
2. And Then There Were None - Agatha Christie - 9.75/10
3. Minister Without Portfolio - Michael Winter - 6.5/10
4. The Woman Upstairs - Claire Messud - 5.5/10
5. Extraordinary - David Gilmour - 8/10
6. Anne of Avonlea - L. M. Montgomery - 6/10
7. The Son of a Certain Women - Wayne Johnston - 3/10
8. Caught - Lisa Moore - 7.5/10
9. HellGoing - Lynn Coady - 7.25/10
10. A Beautiful Truth - Colin McAdam - 4.5/10
11. Going Home Again - Dennis Bock - 3.25/10
12. Beauty Beneath the Banyan - Crystal Fletcher - 10/10
13. Loteria - Mario Alberto Zambrano - 7.75/10
14. Allegiant - Veronica Roth - 7.25/10
15. Bone and Bread - Saleema Nawaz - 7/10
16. Clear Skies, No Wind, 100% Visibility - Theodora Armstrong - 7.5/10

The Challenges

This month I completed three challenges, 100 Books Challenge, E-Book Challenge and the 50 book pledge, where I pledged to read 100 books. Although I'm sort of still participating in the 50 book pledge, I have officially completed it.

My on-going challenges are going fairly well, although there are some that are looking like I won't finish them. I know that I won't finish the wheel of time category in my 2013 Category Challenge. I haven't even touched that category yet, and reading 13 books that are at least 650 pages a piece just doesn't seem like it will happen, when I have other books to read. My Finish that series challenge is looking iffy too. I think that is one I might be able to pull off. I think it will be one where I'm reading down to zero hour, but I think I can pull it off. The Mount TBR Challenge is also one that is looking like I may not be able to finish. I got busy on two mini reading projects during the fall, that are still ongoing. Which has me reading either library books or books that don't fall under the challenge rules. I have about 30 books left. It's doable if I work at it, maybe give up a night or two of sleep, but it's looking not like I'll finish this one. Maybe next year will be the year?. Otherwise, I'm happy with my progress with the challenges.

Completed Challenges
- 100 Books in 2013 Challenge - 100/100 - Completed October 6, 2013
- E-Book Challenge 2013 - 50/10 - Completed October 23, 2013
- 50 Book Pledge - Read my goal of 100 books - Completed October 6, 2013

Previously Completed but Still Participating
- 7th Annual Canadian Book Challenge - 26/13

Ongoing Challenges
2013 Category Challenge - 91/131 - 69%
Alphabet Challenge 2013 - 43/52 - 83%
Finish That Series Challenge 2013 - 1/4 (Series), 2/7 (Books) - 25%
Ireland Reading Challenge 2013 - 6/10 - 60%
Mental Illness Advocacy Challenge - 8/12 - 66%
Mount TBR Reading Challenge 2013 - 44/75 - 59%
Sookie Stackhouse Reading Challenge 2013 - 3/5 - 60%

Countries Visited
This month I visited the following countries during my reading adventures; Canada, USA, England, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand

Create your own travel map - TravBuddy

Books That Followed Me Home
The Orenda - Joseph Boyden

The Lilac Bus - Maeve Binchy
In Falling Snow - Mary-Rose MacColl
The Beam - Episode One - Sean Platt; Johnny B. Truant
The Unfinished Child - Theresa Shea
The Crooked Maid - Dan Vyleta

From the Publisher
Paris Requiem - Lisa Appignanesi
Revolt - Qaisra Shahraz
Cold Hearts - Gunner Staalesen
The Midnight Swimmer - Edward Wilson

And that was it for the month of October. I can't believe how fast it went by. I hope everyone had an enjoyable October and Halloween - the mini chocolates make nice snack foods for reading!


  1. You had a good month! It's been a library month for me too although I found a charity shop that sells trade paperbacks for 99c so I couldn't pass up a (big) armload. I get so frustrated with the library wait lists for the Giller finalists. So discouraging to be #350 in the queue, and to finally get it after all the hubbub has died down and the winners announced. I'm too cheap to take a chance on an unknown hardcover. I do really want to read the Coady, Moore and Boyden books though! Good luck with the rest of your challenges.

  2. #350? Yikes! I guess that is the benefits of a smaller, "town" and library, is that wait times for the books are less. I'm number 4, but the book has been in cataloguing for almost 3 months now for the last two books I need. I'm also not willing to spend the money on these the last handful of books I've yet to read - just not sure I'll like the book enough, but patience is also something I er, lack. 99 cent sale would be lovely, and bad for my shelves.

  3. I think I've left this comment before on an earlier month/challenge update, but I share your difficulty focussing on books from my own shelves. I only aimed for 48 books this year, and I'm not sure I'll even make that goal, and you're already well ahead of me (I don't count books that I accumulate after the year starts, but I think I'd only barely make it even if I did). With all the prizelist reading, October was pretty heavy reading season, so I'm currently enjoying a (slightly) more relaxed November. How about you?

    1. I was hopeful that this year I'd concentrate on the books sitting on my shelves. I keep reading new ones, or prize lists instead. Sigh. I also got side tracked with the prize lists. I'm almost done, I will focus on finishing the Giller Prize list and my own prize project I've been working on, the other prize lists are just on going and I'll read the books eventually, maybe.