The Weekly Update: 2/26/17

 
 

The guys across the hall have St. Patrick’s Day decorations on their door! I didn’t even know St. Patrick’s decorations existed?! Halloween, Christmas, Valentine’s, and now St. Patrick’s. These have got to be the most festive people I’ve ever seen!

Also, last week I showed you all the hand turkey I drew, and I had this whole part where I talked about how I used to be into art and was trying to get back into it before my tennis elbow and other stuff came up, but I removed that part and forgot that I had a question at the end of my post asking if you all have any artsy hobbies which made it sound like drawing hand turkeys is my artsy hobby. And I think that’s kind of funny lol.Save

 

 

Blog/Bookish Updates:

I won a giveaway! I have wanted to read Nightfall since before it came out, but I didn’t get an ARC and it costs too much, so I have been entering this Friday ARC giveaway every week for months over at Writing My Own Fairy Tale just to try and win this damn book lol. I’ve seen a lot of meh reviews for it, but I don’t know, it’s about a really long nighttime! I love nighttime! That’s probably a really stupid reason to be interested in a book, but I don’t care! Apparently the ARC even came with this awesome page of instructions for how to prepare your house for the 14-year night.

Nightfall Paperback

Also, this is on my mind since it just came up for me last week, do you ever read a bunch of books in a series (like 3 or more) and then, by the time the next one comes out (or by the time you notice it’s out) you don’t even remember anything that happened and you don’t care anymore… but you still feel obligated to read it? Especially if it’s the final book? Not an obligation to the author or anything, but just this sense of “I already spent so much time/money on this that I might as well just see how it ends and be able to finally cross another series off my ginormous list of series that I’m currently hanging in the middle of”? Because I do. Otherwise it feels like I wasted all that time in the past reading the first however many books only to give up on the very last one, even if I don’t actually care anymore. You can always reread, but that takes time, and some series aren’t bad but also aren’t good enough that you want to reread. Of course, those are the times when I am really grateful to myself that I write down summaries!

Last but not least, I have tips for everyone else out there who despises reading PDF copies of books! Did you know that, if you have a kindle, Amazon can convert them for you? All you have to do is send the PDF to your kindle email with the word “Convert” in the subject line, and voila! It arrives on your kindle in mobi format. The other simplest solution is to use Calibre to convert the PDF to HTMLZ and then convert the HTMLZ to MOBI or EPUB with the heuristic processing turned on. These methods might not work for every single PDF, and neither is absolutely perfect, but they worked for the book I tried it with. There are no weird line breaks, the font can be resized, and the black background works. Overlooking some minor issues is a lot easier than straining your eyes for an entire book. You’re welcome!

Books I Received for Review:

Surrender the Dark by Tibby Armstrong | reading, books
 

I wasn’t sure I’d get Surrender the Dark after looking at the publisher requirements on NG, but I’m really happy I did! I finally have a vampire book to read! And the MC is blind! Idk why, but I’m oddly extra excited to read this.

Books I Finished:

Destined by Alexandra Moody | reading, books
Chester 5000 XYV by Jess Fink | reading, books
Nightingale Girl by M. R. Pritchard | reading, books
Sex Criminals Vol. 1 by Matt Fraction & Chip Zdarsky | reading, books
Sex Criminals Vol. 2 by Matt Fraction & Chip Zdarsky | books, reading, book covers
 

It looks like I read a lot, but four of these were graphic novels, and one didn’t even have words. Destined was the last in a series, but I think my tastes have gotten pickier since I enjoyed the rest of the series when I read it over a year ago but had a lot of issues with this one. Glad to at least get some answers and an ending though. Chester 5000 XYV was a total spontaneous read after Catherine mentioned it on my NSFW Book Tag post. It was like a steampunk/porn/silent film graphic novel. Interesting combo, yes. It was cute for a bit of fluffy distraction but not quite for me. Nightingale Girl was the second in a series that I also started over a year ago. I was unsure about continuing, but I’m really glad I did!I was so distracted when I read Vol. 2 the first time that I didn’t even know what happened in the story, so I figured I might as well reread Vol. 1 too while I was going to reread Vol. 2. And then I also read Vol. 3.

Song of the Week:

No song this week.

In Case You Missed It:

– I did the NSFW Book Tag in which I basically just talked a lot about sex and cannibalism lol.
– I reviewed All Darling Children by Katrina Monroe, a dark Peter Pan retelling/sequel.
– I reviewed The Pedlar and the Bandit King by Kirby Crow, the first in a very character-focused M/M high fantasy series.
– I reviewed Black-Winged Tuesday by A.B. Rayn, an urban fantasy about guardian angels.

The Sunday Post Link-Up:

Once again, I’m linking up to The Sunday Post at Caffeinated Book Reviewer :-)

 
 

Talk to me!

Did you find any good books or music last week?
Do you ever feel obligated to finish a series if there's only one book left, even if you're not interested anymore?

 

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  1. Greg

    Nightfall looks awesome, I think I remember seeing it. That cover… and 14 years of night? What’s going on there?? That sounds fun and mysterious… Congrats on the win!

    And yes I have that problem. Case in point the Night School books, which I read last fall. And liked. But I have the last one to go and haven’t even bought it- I’m just, like into other books now. Will I read it? I guess…

    Yay for the GN’s! I have Eclipse on the way and maybe Lumberjanes (both due to blogger reviews) and maybe I’ll finally get around to Saga too. At least I can binge now.

    Greg recently posted: Sunday Post #183

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thanks! It does look awesome, right?

      Yeah, it’s a crappy position for us bookworms when we’re just not invested in a series anymore but have already put so much time into them. But like, if there are still a bunch of books less, somehow I don’t really care that I’ve invested time and am able to quit. But if there’s only one book left… it feels like such a waste to not just read the damn thing.

      I’ve been in a graphic novel mood, apparently lol. I don’t even know what Eclipse is? Looking forward to your reviews though! And you know I still think you should try Saga :-) You can binge the first six volumes at least, but I’ve been told they’re planning on a making a whole lot more (which I’m definitely not complaining about).

    1. Kristen Burns

      Lol well I thought it was funny too, so you’re good ;-) But I also know I’m getting way too tired when everything starts being ridiculously hilarious, so I know how you feel.

      Thanks!

      Yeah, the two I read this week, it had been over a year since I’d read the previous books. It happens to the best of us!

      Thanks, same to you :-)

  2. Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews

    Hand-turkeys aren’t part of your artsy hobby arsenal? now I’m so disappointed, Kristen… :p
    We only have decorations here because my husband does them. I’m OK with Christmas decorations, but that’s all… Easter doesn’t even get any time from me.. I would probably drink green beer, though.
    I didn’t discover any new songs last week, but I love the book I’m reading. It’s in Norwegian, and it’s a fantasy, and there are some Norse mythology elements, and so well done!
    Enjoy your new books, congrats on being accepted for Surrender the Dark :)
    Have a wonderful week ahead and happy reading.

    Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews recently posted: Weekend Wrap-up #176 – Teach, Write, Rinse, Repeat

    1. Kristen Burns

      Surprisingly after my last post, no, hand turkeys are not my area of expertise, haha.

      Drinking green beer is one thing. But I didn’t even know St. Patty’s decorations were a thing. I don’t know if I’ve ever done Easter decor either. Really just Christmas.

      Ooh, very cool! I don’t know much about Norse mythology at all.

      Thanks! Same to you :-)

  3. Geybie's Book Blog

    I did have a series I’d read religiously but the last book came like two years later. Since my taste in that theme has changed and I didn’t remember the names of any characters and their stories anymore, I decided to not purchase it. Whenever I see it on goodreads I feel bad. Like I should have done something about it but I didn’t. It makes me feel guilty. So I try my best to ignore it. :-D

    1. Kristen Burns

      Lmao see that’s exactly the problem. I feel like, if I don’t just finish the damn series, I’ll feel guilt or regret or something about it for the rest of my life, and it’s easier to just read the stupid thing.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Well it is about a woman and her sex robot, so… weird is kinda par for the course lol :-P I’m glad you enjoyed the tag! I think it says you have great taste in blog posts ;-)

  4. chucklesthescot

    The question you asked about the not remembering what happened in the previous three books thing…my thought on that is that if book one was so unmemorable I wouldn’t even get to book two never mind the rest of the series! I never feel obligated to finish a series. Whatever I’m reading when I stop enjoying it, I’m done, regardless of how far into a series I am. I gave up trying to use the Kindle email thing a while back when I had Netgalley issues. It wouldn’t let me use the email because I don’t have WIFI set up. I don’t use WIFI as I’m in a bit of a blackspot for it. So I gave up trying to get it to work!

    chucklesthescot recently posted: Chuckles Does Caffeine Withdrawal

    1. Kristen Burns

      Well what happened with the book I read this week, for example, was that I did enjoy the other books when I read them. I binge-read the first three in the series one right after the other, but the last book wasn’t out yet. It wasn’t until recently I discovered it was out, but it’d been over a year since I read the first three. And this just so happened to be a kind of ok series, but even with great series I forget things after over a year.

      Well, the PDF to HTMLZ method should still work for PDFs even if you sideload your books :-)

  5. Becky @ A Fool's Ingenuity

    I didn’t know you could do that with pdfs on Kindle. How useful! I am totally doing that next time I have a pdf I need to read. If only I’d known this at uni, so much of my reading would have been easier and the money I wasted on printer ink! Oh well.

    I definitely know what you mean about feeling like you have to finish a series even though you’re less invested after time has past. I view it as one of those things, and sometimes I do find myself getting into the series again as I read. I wish I was smart wrote down summaries for books, though, that would be crazy useful with my book amnesia.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Seriously, how come none of us knew about that? That feature should be advertised more.

      I mean, yeah, I read through my summaries and once I started the book, I did enjoy not having to go through the whole get-to-know-everything phase and got kinda back into the series. But without the summaries, honestly I’d be so completely lost. I can’t tell you how much those summaries come in handy, especially since I’m a series person and read so many.

  6. Samantha

    I totally feel obligated to finish a series sometimes. It sucks because if I have waited a long time, I hardly remember the plots of the other books and am so confused! I hate it! It really makes me hesitant to start books that I know are part of a series until all the books are out!

    Samantha recently posted: Sunday Post: Spring in February!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Seriously, I’d be so lost and confused without my summaries. They come in so handy! I would love to only read series that are complete, but then you usually can’t get them as review copies and have to pay for all of them (which I can’t afford) and sometimes I just can’t stand to wait years for all the books to come out in a series I’m really excited for.

  7. sjhigbee

    Oh thank you so much for those tips for converting PDF files to mobi files for the Kindle! It isn’t a question of despising reading them – but the font is invariably too small for my very tired middle-aged eyes! Congratulations on getting hold of Nightfall – and I also like the look of All Darling Children. I loved the original Peter Pan story, so it sounds like one I’d enjoy. Have a great week, Kristen. My Sunday Post – https://sjhigbee.wordpress.com/2017/02/26/sunday-post-26th-february-2017/

    sjhigbee recently posted: While the Morning Stars Sing

    1. Kristen Burns

      Glad I could help! That’s also my problem, my eyes already has enough problems, so it’s often hard for me to read the text when it can’t be resized, and the white background with black text is harder on my eyes. Thanks! I’m looking forward to Nightfall. And I hope you enjoy All Darling Children if you try it :-)

  8. Michelle @Because Reading

    The girl downstairs has decorations for St Pats on her door, I only decorate for Halloween, Xmas and Easter. I don’t have time to decorate for the other holidays. lol

    I have bailed on a few series because the second or third book took to long especially if they are ARCs.

    I would never read PDFs if I couldn’t change them to Mobi files. I hate PDFs. I have declined reviews for only being in that format and not being able to convert them properly.

    I really need to read more GNs I just don’t have anyplace that has them for me to get them since they are so expensive to buy. :(
    Have a great week, Kristen! Happy Reading!

    Michelle @Because Reading recently posted: Good News, Sick and One Review ~ WIR & TSP

    1. Kristen Burns

      Well you sill decorate for more holidays than me, so don’t feel bad lol.

      Exactly, sometimes it takes way too long for the next book and I lose interest. If I’ve only read one book or there’s still going to be a bunch more, I don’t have an issue. It’s just those times when it’s the last book in a series, and then I feel like I might as well just read it.

      I don’t take review copies if they’re PDF either, but what happened to me recently was that I didn’t know it’s only be offered in PDF. So I took to Google to find a way to convert it properly lol.

      Do you have a library card? Because Hoopla has TONS of graphic novels. That’s where I get mine!

      Thanks, you too :-)

    1. Kristen Burns

      I’m looking forward to Nightfall! And yeah, exactly, once I’ve already put all that time into a series, it seems a waste to give up on the final book. And yes, that happens too when I really am still into a series, but I don’t want to reread because that takes a lot of time.

  9. Lily B

    Gah yes. I do that to a series all the time. I’ll find a series, i’ll binge and sometimes i either put reading the new book aside cause… not really sure why, especially if I loved the series. Or I’ll pick it up months later and feel confused. It happened recently, I don’t remember with which series that was tho.

    Yeah St Patricks Day has deco XD it’s been out since Valentines day around here, which is totally annoying, but yeah. Enjoy your week and your new read!!

    Lily B recently posted: Weekly Recap #4

    1. Kristen Burns

      Exactly! It usually happens when I binge-read the first however many books but then the last one or next one isn’t out yet.

      Apparently it does have decor, I didn’t even know lol. It does seem that decorations at stores and whatnot for the next holiday start the day after the latest holiday passes. Thanks, same to you!

  10. Bookworm Brandee

    St. Patrick’s Day decorations?? These guys have it going on! ;) And turkey art is totally an artsy hobby. ;) LOL
    Congrats on the win! Hopefully it’ll be a great read since you put so much effort into winning it. It does sound interesting.
    I totally feel that obligation to series – that’s why I am up to 150 series I’m behind in. And yes, there are *many* I can’t really remember but I *did* invest time, energy and money into them so I must continue. ;)
    LOL I did think to myself, “wow, she read a lot of books last week!” so it was funny to them read your comment about it not really being “that” many. ;) Still, more than me!
    I hope you have a great week, Kristen! And that your reads are all delights! <3

    1. Kristen Burns

      They’re so festive, right? Haha.

      Thanks! I do want the book to be good, the little paper got me more excited lol, but I’m not getting my expectations overly high because of some of the reviews I’ve seen.

      Ohhhhhhhhhh myyyyyyy goodnesssssssssssssssss that is a lot of series! I’m probably at like 50 at this point, but some of them I’ve only read one book in and might just decide I’ve lost interest by the time the next book comes out.

      I read your mind ;-) Thanks, same to you!

  11. suzanna

    Congrats on winning Nightfall. Love the instructions that came with it. 14 years of night would be OK if we could have stars and moody moons all the time but not if it’s just going to be cloudy and black!
    I do feel obliged to finish series but I hate it when I’ve forgotten the details of the other books. There is something to be said for waiting until all the books are out.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thanks! I love the instructions, they got me even more excited because they’re so interesting. Apparently the people have to leave during the 14-year night though, so I guess they go somewhere sunny lol.

      I definitely prefer binge-reading series, but it’s not possible if you want ARCs, which I do because I can only afford so many books. And sometimes I’m just too excited to try a series to wait for years until it’s complete!

  12. Lampshade Reader

    LOL Congrats on finally winning it then! Looks cool. I love that map.

    I did NOT know that about PDFs (the emailing part). I have Calibre though and it works pretty good. Have you received graphic novels from Netgalley? I had to download Adobe Digital Editions and technically you can then transfer them to a device, but I could not. So I just read them on my computer. Just wanted to ask, in case you knew anything about it.

    Hope you have a great week! ~Aleen

    Lampshade Reader recently posted: Sunday Post #22: The Blahs and Video Games

    1. Kristen Burns

      Lol thanks!

      Every time I’ve tried to convert a PDF straight to MOBI in Calibre, it had terrible line breaks. But the HTMLZ step worked so much better. I’ve never tried the HTMLZ method with graphic novels, but I doubt either of the methods I mentioned would work for those. I’ve always had to read those on the computer, but they’re quick reads at least, so it’s not as much of an issue.

      Thanks, same to you!

  13. Lorna

    I have so many partial series out there so lots of times if the second book doesn’t grab me I will just stop. Other times it may just be a three star read for me, but I still want to see what happens. I guess it all depends on the book/author. If it’s a favorite author I will probably keep reading them. Thanks for the convert tip. I have actually not read a book for review because I couldn’t read it. This would work for me!
    And, 14 years of night? How exactly would anything survive? Interesting premise. Hope it’s a good one for you!

    1. Kristen Burns

      I read tons of first-in-series that I don’t continue, it’s just when I read like 3 books in a series and then the last one comes out, it seems like a waste not to just read it! But my interest in whether to continue series is definitely a case-by-case basis. Glad I could help with the converting tip!

      Apparently all the people have to leave for the 14-year night but a few teenagers get trapped there, so I guess I’ll find out how they survive ;-) Thanks!

  14. Katherine @ I Wish I Lived in a Library

    I love the idea of St Patrick’s Day decorations but the actual doing the decorating is way harder! I see cute stuff at craft stores every once in awhile but my creativity level is about at zero. I have that same issue with series too. There are a few that I read that I’m behind on and I feel like I really should go back and reread before I continue because it’s been so long since I’ve read any of it that I’ve forgotten everything but honestly there just isn’t time for that! It’s easier if I no longer care because I tend to forget about it! Have a great week!

    Katherine @ I Wish I Lived in a Library recently posted: This Week in Reading - February 26

    1. Kristen Burns

      I mean, it looks like the decoration across the hall was just bought at a store and hung on the door. But I guess I just don’t feel the need to decorate for St. Patty’s lol. But ugh yes, the series thing is such a problem! Except I never actually stop caring or forget. Like, it just keeps bothering me knowing I haven’t read it lol. Thanks, you too!

  15. Barb (boxermommyreads)

    I like the looks of Nightingale Girl. Interested to see your thoughts. I see you’ve enjoyed some time catching up on Sex Criminals – I know you mentioned liking it a lot on my blog. I started The Chew Vol. 1 last night but put it aside for an ARC I was really wanting to pick up. Hope to get back to it later this week.

    Barb (boxermommyreads) recently posted: Curse of Stars Blog Tour and Review

    1. Kristen Burns

      The series with Nightingale Girl is a really unique and interesting one. If only I could ever get the reviews posted—I’ve had the first book’s review ready for like six months lol. Yep, I saw they finally got Vol. 2 and 3 on Hoopla so I figured I might as well catch up on Sex Criminals! I haven’t heard of The Chew, I’ll have to check out your review once you get it posted.

  16. Amber Elise @ Du Livre

    OH yeah, so many St Paddy’s decorations are up in my area too! You can’t go to a crafts store without being accosted by the color green. Haha. I’m so happy you were able to get Nightfall, it looks like you’ve been really looking forward to it!

    And I’ll need to check out your NSFW tag when I’m not at work. Haha.

    Amber Elise @ Du Livre recently posted: Non-YA Novels I Want to Read this Year

    1. Kristen Burns

      I don’t go to craft stores, maybe that’s why these are the only decorations I’ve seen lol. Thanks! I have really been wanting to read Nightfall :-)

      Hehe probably a good idea to avoid the “Not Safe for Work” tag while at work ;-)

  17. Dragonfly @ Our Familiarium

    HA! funny you didn’t know St. Patrick’s decorations existed. I guess it’s a big thing around here :) They are everywhere.
    Congrats on winning the giveaway! I’ve been curious about Nightfall so will be looking forward to the review.
    Someone with my memory should definitely write down summaries too! That’s a great habit K. And thanks for the PDF tip! That’s great to know because I think I requested a PDF ARC too UGH!

    1. Kristen Burns

      I guess it’s not a big thing around here lol. Thanks! Who knows when I’ll actually get to the book though, because TBRs. I totally recommend writing down (or typing, I guess, since that’s way easier) summaries. They seriously come in SO handy. Glad I could help with the PDF tip!

  18. Di @ Book Reviews by Di

    Okay, okay – the guys across the hall are way too eager to decorate! Who does that? And which GUYS do that? It’s unreal!

    Oh! So your hobby ISN’T hand turkeys. ;) :0 Ha ha! It’s a little funny. I didn’t actually THINK that it was, but now you mention it. :)

    Another giveaway! Well done!

    Okay – so series… If I READ a series and love it I always reread before the next book… Now if I am not enjoying a series…. I don’t really know what to do, especially two or three books in!!! I’m on the fence about Red Queen right now because I enjoyed that, read Glass Sword and thought it was awful and NOW??? Kings Cage is out and I think I just need to suck it up and DO IT. But I don’t want to reread. :( Will I even know what’s going on? Who can tell?

    Aargh! I have a kobo and not a kindle. :( That is one big plus for getting a kindle though. Wow!

    Hope you’re having a great week and a great weekend is ahead!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Lol they apparently really love decorating for holidays.

      I think some people might’ve thought hand turkeys was my hobby, haha, so I just wanted to clarify :-P

      Thanks!

      I’ve noticed you do a lot of rereads for series. You have serious dedication! I usually don’t reread a series unless it’s the last book in the series (and even then, only for certain series). I’ve only reread for a not-last book once, and I probably won’t do it again for that series now that I’ve already done it once. I got too many other books I want to read lol. You probably won’t know what’s going on in that book, haha. You should start writing summaries, they’re so helpful!

      Well the Calibre method might still work for the kobo depending on what format it uses.

      Thanks, same to you!

  19. Lola

    You really have festive neighbors, I didn’t know they had st Patrick’s day decorations. That’s neat! I did see a blog this week with a st Patrick’s day background.

    lol that’s kind a funny how that question made it sound like drawing hand turkey’s was your artsy hobby. I used to be pretty into art and drawing in high school, but haven’t done a lot with it since uni or so.

    That’s pretty awesome you won that giveaway! I sometimes do that too, if I can’t afford a book and really want it, I just start following the author everywhere and hope one day I might win a giveaway.

    And yes I’ve had that quite often, where I buy the last book or feel like I should read it, even though i don’t care anymore. I have the third Divergent book still lying around and some other sequels for other series and when i think of them now I just don’t care anymore, but at the same time I feel like I should read them.

    Is that amazon converting thing free? I had heard of that once, but thought it cost money. Maybe that was something different or they changed it. I despise pdf’s they never convert well. I usually just convert them to epub as I have a kobo. But they never look quite right. I’ll have to try converting them to htmlz first next time I have one, I hadn’t heard of that before.

    I hope Surrender the Dark is as good as you hope it is. It does sound like a good book for you with the whole vampire and blind thing. Seems like you read a lot of books this week, even with so many being graphic novels, it’s still nice you got that all read. Sorry I haven’t stopped by as much lately. I still keep all your previous posts I haven’t read yet in my e-mail, but it’s just really hard to make time to do some blog visiting lately :(. I hope you had a good week!

    Lola recently posted: My To-Be Read List #31: poll

    1. Kristen Burns

      I do have really festive neighbors lol. That’s cute about the background!

      Lol I just got the impression that maybe some people thought that, and I did make it sound that way by accident. I was the same, really into art (mostly sketching) in elementary, middle, and high school, but I haven’t drawn much since then.

      Thanks! But actually this was from a blogger who has some ARCs and has a giveaway each week where you get to choose which book from the list you want if you win. I used to sometimes follow authors for that reason, but I got tired of being signed up for a bunch of newsletters that I didn’t care about that never actually had any giveaways anyway.

      Yes, that’s exactly the feeling with the series thing.

      The converting is free as far as I know as long you have the wi-fi or whatever and can send books to your kindle. It works the same way as sending a book to your kindle, except it makes the PDF into a readable MOBI. Or you could just try the HTMLZ thing. The only problem I had with the HTMLZ was that on each page of the PDF it said the book title and page number, and that included in the text that was converted. So, like, every so often it would show up in the middle of a paragraph or something. But it was easy to overlook and much better than struggling to read a PDF.

      Thanks! No worries, I understand if you’re busy and can’t visit every post!