Oy. November. I can’t remember the last time a month kicked my ass so much. For some reason this month felt exhausting, and I’m actually glad it’s coming to an end. That and the fact that my husband can finally SHAVE OFF THAT DAMN MUSTACHE/BEARD/NIGHTMARE he’s been growing out this month for “Movember”. I’m seriously counting down the hours to when I can see his silly face again.
In between dentist appointments and flu shots and getting together with friends, I haven’t had a whole lot of time to sit down and blog. Things have been busy at work, hence the whole not being able to blog at work thing going on. And don’t worry, being busy is a good thing. The other girl in my department was transferred, so it’s just me doing these returns, and it’s keeping me busy for a full eight hours. So, yes, I can’t blog as much during the day, but at least my days are zipping by fast. And by the time I get home, I can’t think of anything to blog about. But since the month is over, let me sum up what I’ve been able to get accomplished.
Ever since I got back into reading YA fiction again at the beginning of the month, I have been reading pretty much non-stop, which is another excuse for my lack of blogging. I’ve been SCORING at the library when it comes to books I’ve been looking for (except for Kiera Cass’s The Selection, which I’m convinced I’ll never find), and it’s been so much fun. Here’s a list of the books I’ve read this month alone:
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince : This was the last HP book I read before getting back into YA (see my previous post), and I forget how much I loooooove this book. Honestly, I think it might have edged up in front of Goblet of Fire, which has been my favorite one for ten years. But I also think that whenever I read Prisoner of Azkaban, so who knows. Oh hell, they’re all my favorite.
A Brief History of Montmaray / The FitzOsbornes in Exile / The FitzOsbornes at War: It’s been a long time since I’ve read a complete series of books where I absolutely loved all of them, and loved the final book the best. But that’s how I felt about the Montmaray Journals trilogy by Michelle Cooper. Seriously, people…if you want to read good YA literature that’s NOT a paranormal romance or post-apocalyptic thriller, read these books. Amazing.
Cinder: This retelling of Cinderella was also fun to read, and I enjoyed the Firefly-inspired world the story was set in. It didn’t pack the emotional punch that other YA books I’ve read have, but it was still a great story, and I can’t wait for the sequel.
Bitterblue: The book that came before this one, Graceling, was one of my favorite books of 2011 (or 2010…can’t really remember), and I had Extremely high hopes for this one. And luckily the author Kristin Cashore didn’t disappoint. I still think I like Graceling better, but I thoroughly enjoyed all 563 pages in a matter of one weekend. It also made me realize how much I love fantasy books that sound like they could be actual history, sort of similar to Shannon Hale’s Bayern series. Highly recommend.
Under the Never Sky: The more dystopian YA books I read, the less and less they affect me. I don’t know if it’s because The Hunger Games set such a high standard that no one else can come close to (except for Lauren DeStefano’s Wither and Lauren Oliver’s Delirium, which were both AMAZING), but I find myself feeling almost disappointed when I’m reading dystopia these days because they’re all starting to sound the same. But you know what? I really liked Under the Never Sky. It didn’t kick me in the gut like The Hunger Games did, but I was intrigued by the world that Veronica Rossi had created. Now onto the search for the sequel…
Team Human: I’d heard lots of good things about this book when it first came out, and I was excited to find it at the library. It didn’t realize that it was a humorous book that sort of made fun of the whole vampire phenomenon, so I wasn’t very emotionally invested in it. However, it was light and fun and took me just a day to read, so if you need a break from the heavy stuff, it’s a good recommendation.
I’m currently reading Veronica Roth’s Insurgent, which is the sequel to last year’s Goodreads’ book of the year Divergent, which I loved. I’m only a quarter of the way through right now, but things are good. Can’t wait to delve back into it tonight.
Speaking of The Hunger Games, I FINALLY saw the movie a couple of weeks ago. I liked it – I thought Jennifer Lawrence was the perfect Katniss and Liam Hemsworth was the perfect Gale, though I’m still having issues with the whole Josh Hutcherson as Peeta thing. Peeta is sort of sacred to me, and I felt something was missing. But they covered pretty much everything in the movie that was in the book, and it was entertaining, even though it wasn’t the emotional rollercoaster ride that the book gave me.
Because of all the reading going on, I’ve been lacking on any TV or movie watching. I’m still on season seven of Supernatural, and I’ve fallen behind on The New Girl, Castle, and Once Upon a Time. I’ve been watching a lot of my daughter’s shows, though I’ve managed to get her to watch only shows that I enjoy as well. Thanks to Netflix we can now watch The Moomins for the first time EVER, which is awesomeballs, and I recently checked out season one of The Smurfs from the library, which I could watch all freaking day.
I’ve also been watching season two of Downton Abbey in preparation for season three, which premieres on January 6 here in the states. If I haven’t mentioned it before, Downton Abbey is like the world’s best soap opera but with better writing, better acting, better accents, and better clothes. Of course I just happened to stumble upon a total SPOILER that will happen in season three involving my favorite character, but whatever. I got over Joss Whedon killing Wash, Tara, and Fred, and I’ll get over this.
The only show I’ve only been actively keeping up with is Glee (and I use the term “actively” loosely because I keep having to play catch-up), but I’m finding it difficult to get super excited for it the way I used to. But I’m having issues with this season of Glee, all which will be addressed in a later blog. It’s just too much to talk about here in this already-too-long blog post. But you’ve been warned.
As for music, the Christmas music season finally began on November 23, when I added 765 Christmas songs to my iPod. It seems like a lot of songs, but when I play my iPod on random at work, I’m lucky if I hear five Christmas songs during the course of eight hours. I haven’t bought any music in a long time, even falling behind on my Glee songs from iTunes, but I noticed yesterday that the two-disc soundtrack to The Hobbit is now up for pre-order with a release date of December 11. And you know I’m not going to wait until Christmas to buy that one for myself.
So November is over, and December is just a few hours away. Stayed tuned for an End-of-the-Year blog post spectacular (re: year in review) and a final 2012 wrap-up of Hot Tea, Hot Books. For now…take a breather. November is over!