Monthly summary – January ’16

winterThe first month of the new year flew by. How was your January? Here it was cold, snowy for a while and now it’s all melting. It should be too early for the meltdown, but here it is. Streets covered with ice, water and mud. People trying to walk through it all. Car drivers that simply don’t care.

But what of it? So the weather is nasty, so you’re in a bad mood, just take a book, cosy up with a cup of hot tea and read on!

So what did I accomplish in January?

  • I finished 11 books: 3 audio, 4 graphic novels and 4 ebooks
  • I redesigned my blog menu:
    • All the posts you can find now contains all the reviews from different categories + my Library page link
    • Around the books has the BBC Thursdays, Top 5 Wednesday and some other more or less bookish posts
    • In Other personal posts, you can find pages with my 2016 challenge tracker, some tags and awards, etc
  • I’ve changed and revived my posts about BBC radio dramas. Now you’ll have regular updates about any interesting dramas I’ll find every Thursday

Favourite book of the month

Love in the Time of MurderFind the review HERE, it contains guest post from the author, so you do want to check it out 🙂

And to sum it up quickly – it’s a cozy mystery with a bunch of awesome characters, a solid dose of humor, love and interesting plot.

Biggest disappointment

KaminishiIt’s one of the books that promised more than it delivered. And it delivered it poorly.

Yes, it has a nice setting in Japan old and new, but it could be so much better. It had a potential, but the author decided that the sex scenes are more important than a plot. I’m sorry, but I simply didn’t like it.

Currently reading / listening to:

Halfway Bitten All Our Yesterdays The Flame in the Maze

Working on reviews:

Cruel Beauty The Dreadful Fate of Jonathan York Alice Takes Back Wonderland Code Name Verity Crystal cadets

Kids and monsters

Spiral-Bound Top Secret SummerSpiral-Bound: Top Secret Summer by Aaron Renier

My rating: star-full-iconstar-full-iconstar-empty-iconstar-empty-icon

Goodreads | Amazon US

I received a preview copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Goodreads blurb

With an ensemble cast straight from a box of Animal Crackers, this is a delightful tale of ambition, morality, and self-discovery drawn in a decidedly beautiful fashion reminiscent of Richard Scary and Lewis Trondheim, yet utterly unique. Renier’s fully-realized and compellingly adventurous narrative is at once both achingly naive and profoundly worldly. A remarkable debut, this tightly crafted novella is the real deal, and will charm your socks off.

For a start I’d like to mention that the publisher did not provide me with the full book, I received about a half of it. Unfortunately, it wasn’t mentioned in the description on Netgalley since I tend to avoid partial reads. You can’t really get a full image from simply glancing at it. But, on the other hand, I wasn’t really much into the story anyway. It only just started to be interesting when the sample ended and I was left hanging. Continue reading “Kids and monsters”

BBC Thursday – 28th of January

BBC_Radio_logo

Today I’ve got for you three series that will surely fill your week until the next BBC Thursday. Starting with funny stories for children, through some historical drama and up till a science-fiction tale with a chill.

 

1. Shakespeare Retold

Authors: Andy Stanton, Pamela Butchart, Frank Cottrell Boyce, The Taming, Horatio Clare, Laura Dockrill, Geraldine McCaughrean, Chris Priestley, Jamila Gavin, Paul Stewart

Ten of William Shakespeare’s most famous plays become the inspiration for a collection of stories by leading children’s writers and read by some famous voices.

King Lear: A Tragedy in 5 ActsMacdeath | The Tempest: The Isle of NoisesThe Taming of the Kat DogHamlet Lives ForeverA Midsummer Camp’s DreamHenry V – A Soldier’s TaleRomeo v JulietAll for a Pound of FleshOl’Fella

Day left: no deadline set
Duration: 15 min | 10 episodes aired weekly on Fridays
Rating: ★★★★★

A set of fun tales created for children and based on Shakespeare’s tales. For an adult, it’s more of a set of short parodies and I rather enjoyed the first two. Other tales will be aired weekly, so keep the link at hand if you want to listen to them.

 

2. Plantagenet by Mike Walker

Series of plays by Mike Walker, inspired by Holinshed’s Chronicles, about the early years of the Plantagenet dynasty

BBC S01 E01 | S01 E02 | S01 E03 | S02 E01 | S02 E02 | S02 E03 | S03 E01 | S03 E02 | S03 E03 | Goodreads

Day left: 13
Duration: 60 min | 9 episodes aired Monday-Friday
Rating: ★★★★★

If you like a good historical drama this will be a treat for you. By now I’ve only heard the first part, but it was a good one. Plantagenets stories are split to three series with three episodes each. That’s nine hours of drama!

 

3. Ghost Zone by Marty Ross

Surrounded by devastation and a radioactive cloud, a Highland village appears to have survived a meteor strike. Stars Gayanne Potter.

BBC Episode 1 | Episode 2 | Episode 3 | Episode 4 | Episode 5 | Goodreads

Day left: 25
Duration: 30 min | 5 episodes aired weekly on Mondays
Rating: ★★★★☆

This is a well-made play about a town that should be destroyed and yet everyone there seems to be alive… or are they? It’s a story filled with drama, some scary moments and otherworldly experiences.

 

Top 5 Wednesday – Disappointing Eye Candy

imgresToday’s theme is Disappointing Eye Candy, books that looked beautiful, but were awful.

There are unfortunately plenty of books like this everywhere. I am guilty of buying some books for their covers :). Sometimes they are just irresistible. Sometimes there’s a nice sentence or two in the description that makes the temptation even worse. Add to that a few nice words from other readers and te book end up on your shelf. And then, one day, when enough time had passed, your treacherous hand reaches for the book, takes it, and you start reading it… and then the magic disappears and you wish you just left the book on the shelf, so it could look pretty and tempt you further.

Since apparently I’m getting worse and worse with making the top 5 an actual list with five books only, I’ll keep up with my bad behavior and hope you will forgive me ;). Here are five sets of books that disappointed me

5

Neo ArcadiaThe pretty manga. I like manga and I can read stories from various genres with various drawing style. As long as the story is nicely written, well drawn and makes sense there’s a big chance I won’t be very disappointed. But most of my reading is done through the internet since we don’t have that many mangas available in Poland. Plus reading it in Polish is kind of weird ;). Here are the two titles that I did buy a paper edition and I wasn’t really too happy about it after reading. Continue reading “Top 5 Wednesday – Disappointing Eye Candy”