sunday post #5

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Caffeinated Reviewer. It's a chance to recap posts from the past week and tease upcoming content, as well as share new books, reading challenge progress, and anything else you've come across in the last seven days.

Whew! My weekdays may have been calm, but this weekend was the first genuinely busy one of the new year. (And believe me, that was entirely by design!) Yesterday I had a very early start and long day outside as a strong and misty cold front rolled through. This afternoon I get to brave the cold and ice again for the first opera of the new year. I went to my first performance about 15 years ago: a classic rendition of Madame Butterfly by Puccini. It was love at first sight! My mother and I indulged in season tickets through high school, but let them go when I moved away for college and graduate school. Now that I'm back in my hometown, we've resumed the tradition ♥


This week I finished two books and continued to make appreciable progress on the Seven Pillars monstrosity. I'm falling into a rhythm with Lawrence's prose, which is helping with my pace, and if I manage to read just 20-25 pages each day then I can finish by the end of the month! That's enough to keep me on pace with RoofBeamReader's TBR Challenge, so I'm pleased.

I'm also happy to say that I enjoyed both of the books I managed to read this week! First was The Balcony by Jane Delury, a somewhat sedate historical fiction that spans out over more than a century and tells the interconnected stories of families who live on or near a rural French estate. It's a quiet book that gets deeper as you go, which was pleasantly surprising for a debut author. Next I moved on to Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer and—spoiler—it's my second five-star book of the year! I'm still gathering my thoughts for a cogent review, but needless to say the quibbles I had with his recent novel, Borne, totally vanished with this novella.

This coming week I hope to keep up the progress with Seven Pillars, as well as start on CIRCE by Madeline Miller. It's been languishing on my bookshelf for over a month now, but I've only just gotten to a point where I have the freedom to pick which review copies I read next. If I finish it quickly (and I suspect I will!) then I'll move on to one of the new review copies listed a little further down in this week's haul.



Between Daemons: True (Bookish) Love
Down the TBR Hole #7
Book Review: Thunderhead by Neal Shusterman
Movie Review: The Boy Downstairs


This week's haul features the results of my first #booksfortrade transactions! On their way to me are ARCs of Brightly Burning by Alexa Donne, Reign of the Fallen by Sarah Glenn Marsh, and The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw. I've been excited about all three for quite some time and can't wait to dive in. Another first to celebrate is my successfully requesting a physical ARC from a publisher! FSG Originals is very kindly sending me a review copy of The Strange Bird by Jeff VanderMeer. Considering my stellar reading experience with Annihilation and the glowing whispers I've heard about this new novella, I suspect I'm in for a real treat.

My lucky streak continued with another Goodreads giveaway win, this time for an ARC of What Should Be Wild by Julia Fine. It sounds quite dark and twisty so I'm excited to get my hands on it. Lastly, I requested my second book from Blogging with Books: New Boy by Tracy Chevalier. It's a modern re-imagining of Othello, my favorite Shakespearean play, and part of the Hogarth Shakespeare Series. I have to admit to not knowing that series existed, but I've already read and enjoyed Hag-Seed by Margaret Atwood and I have a digital galley of Macbeth by Jo Nesbo. I may just need to seek out the rest of the books later on!


I want to extend a big thank you to Evelina at AvalinahsBooks for starting up an advice and networking group for new book bloggers! (For more info, see this tweet.) She and the other mods have put a lot of time, thought, and effort into a project meant to help others, which I'd like to help pay forward in my own small way. Right here each week I'll feature posts by members of the #NewBloggers101 group*, so be sure to click through and discover some new, amazing bloggers!

What Tools Can Help Me Be An Organized Blogger? Writing and Scheduling Posts on AvalinahsBooks
My Writing Playlist on ParchmentAndQuill
Poem: Dreamer's Land on LucyTurnsPages
Discussion: Reviewers Sellings ARCs on BookBosomedBlonde
Bookworms Explained #5: What's Your Favorite Book? on BookDragons247

*If you're a member of the #NewBloggers101 group and would like to see your post featured here, I put out a call every Saturday afternoon on Twitter and share the tweet to the Discord chat!

Do you have any traditions with your parents? Did you pick up any new books this week? Anything you're excited about in the upcoming week?

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