Fun Site for Book Recommendations!

I stumbled across a well-designed website the other day:

The layout is plain, featuring only the opening paragraphs of an unidentified book. This allows you to read without making assumptions based on the author, title, genre, or cover. There’s a button at the bottom of the page to reveal the title and author, along with links to view/purchase the book on Amazon. Alternately, you can click the “Pick a Cover” link and scroll through columns of cover art for something to grab your eye.

The site features a wonderful selection of contemporary lit, classic fiction, and even non-fiction. (Browsing the covers gives you a better idea of the variety available since the sample text only shows one book per page.)

Each time you visit, you’ll see a different sample text and it’s easy to jump between them until something catches your imagination. And when the site eventually recommends something you’ve already read, it doesn’t feel like a wasted click so much as a round of trivia: Name That Book!

Happy Reading, All!

Note: To All Those People Who Love Getting Organized…

Some time ago, I was cleaning out a side room at my old office and ran across a Rolodex. No one wanted it. My boss said I should throw it in the recycling bin, unless I wanted it…

So I brought it home, dusted it off, and daydreamed about using it as some kind of organizational tool for books or reviews or my TBR or… idk. Something book related, though.

The tabs are alphabetical, but I could flip them to write something on their backs. The cards are also easily customized—they’ve got plain lines. Anyone have suggestions for how to make best use of the Rolodex? I thought about using it as a card catalog of sorts, but I have more books than cards and I know my books quite well—I don’t need a list of them. I’ve never bought the same book twice by mistake, whew.

Just going to leave this here and it’s back to regularly scheduled programming tomorrow!


Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

Like all previous years, my New Year’s resolution isĀ to blog regularly. But this year, I’ve got a running start. I spent the final months of 2016 storing up reviews; by continuing to work ahead and schedule posts, I hope to create the illusion I’ve gotten my act together. šŸ˜›

So what’s coming up in January?

3rd – Review: The Book of Strange New Things by Michel Faber
6th – Review: The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
9th – Review: Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
12th – Review: And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
15th – Review: The Vegetarian by Han Kang
18th – Review: How Right You Are Jeeves by P.G. Wodehouse
21st – So Bad I Read It For You: The Secret History by Donna Tartt
24th – The TBR Shuffle 1
27th – Public Opinion Poll 1
30th – Monthly Round-up: January 2017

Happy New Year, Everyone! Here’s to a year of great books!

Round-up: 2016 + Thank You!

It’s only the fourth of December, so it might be too soon to slam the door on 2016. 2016 has been a strange year and I’ve got a stack of goals and much optimism for 2017. I’ve started banking reviews for 2017 so I can schedule posts and seem like I’ve finally gotten my act together with this blogging thing. How many times have I said that now?

Even with my irregular blogging, this has been my best year yet in terms of views/likes/comments. Thank you all so much for stopping by! The best thing about WordPress is how many engaging bloggers are out there with so many book recommendations. My TBR may not thank you, but I do! (The ol’ TBR is at an all-time high, but more on that later.)

Somewhat surprisingly (given its 2014 post date) Review: City of ThievesĀ received more traffic than any other post this year. Of items published in 2016, Review: The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August was the most viewed, which fits the feedback I’ve gotten that my negative reviews are more entertaining than my positive ones.

2016 has been a great year for reading—I finally picked up books by Salman Rushdie, discovered J.G. Ballard (who I’ve yet to find in a bookstore, used or otherwise), and foundĀ appreciation for David Mitchell. Also, though I haven’t posted reviews yet, The Loney by Andrew Michael Hurley and The North Water by Ian McGuire are both impossible to put down.

If you missed any and would like to catch up, links to all my 2016 reviews are below. Here’s hoping you all have a wonderful holiday season and new year! Cheers!

The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood (4.7)
A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler (4.2)
The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North (1.5)
High Rise by J.G. Ballard (4.8)
Gun, with Occasional Music by Jonathan Lethem (4.3)
The Book of Evidence by John Banville (5.0)
Summer House with Swimming Pool by Herman Koch (3.4)
Concrete Island by J.G. Ballard (4.7)
Haroun and the Sea of Stories by Salman Rushdie (4.4)
Luka and the Fire of Life by Salman Rushdie (4.8)
Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden (2.5)
My Cousin Rachel by Daphne du Maurier (4.8)
My Uncle Oswald by Roald Dahl (3.8)
The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell (4.7)
Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (4.4)
Boy, Snow, Bird by Helen Oyeyemi (2.5)
Slade House by David Mitchell (4.7)
Shutter Island by Dennis Lehane (4.7)
The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters (3.2)
Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy (not rated)