Recently, I've been trying to make some improvements to the blog, including Disqus comments. That comment system lasted all of 20 minutes before I decided it was not for me- the main problem being I had errors when trying to retrieve my previous comment data, so on posts where I had had comments before, there were none. Also, I looked at a lot of differents blogs' polls on the subject, and found Disqus to be less popular than the hideous Blogger system. Even though it is unsightly, I'm sticking with Blogger, not using the Captcha, and moderating all comments. In other words, if you want to promote your 'weblog' by leaving a spammy comment (like "do you use Wordpress" doi) this isn't the place to do it.
Isn't it weird how all spammers use the phrase weblog instead of blog?
Recent Acquisitions (or the Piling of the-Piles):
I've been a very good bibliophile and have only bought one book (Ready Player One) in accordance with my 2015 goals. Let's see how long that lasts.
Ready Player One (Ready Player One #1) by Ernest Cline
A video-game based sci-fi novel. I can dig that.
Unseen (Unborn #2) by Amber Lynn Natusch
This popped up on Netgalley as a Read Now, even though I previously had to get approved for the first book, Unborn, which wasn't an advanced copy when it was available there. I think Unborn is currently Read Now as well, but I could be wrong. Anyway, I'm almost always willing to continue a series, as I am a certified series devourer.
I was reading A Passage of Stars (Highroad Trilogy #1) by Kate Elliott, but then I read so many other books besides it and could only remember bits and pieces of what had occurred thus far. Also, I was reading a part with a prophecy in it, but for the life of me I can't place which character they think to be the chosen one. I'll get back to this one later, when I'm done with all my review copies.
The Eterna Files by Leanna Renee Hieber
I'm not exactly impressed yet, but this one could surprise me and turn around. Only, the Goodreads average rating leads me to suspect otherwise.
Finished These Books:
The Parasol Protectorate series by Gail Carriger
Chances are you've seen some of my reviews for these (as well as the Kate Daniels series) popping up a lot this January- it seems I'm catching up on my previous lack of adult series in urban fantasy and steampunkery. All in all, these were supremely entertaining, and probably (based on some lukewarm critiques by my fellow Casual Readers) not for everyone. Of course, I never expect historical accuracy with any fantasy/sci-fi book, so my expectations were less historical-minded than others. Werewolves, unfortunately, did not exist (openly, at least) in late-nineteenth century England. Or in Scotland, for that matter.
Billy by Albert French
My first five star read of the year. Here's the synopsis because I don't have words for this book yet: "Albert French's harrowing debut novel of 10-year-old Billy Lee Turner, convicted and executed for murdering a white girl in Baines, Mississippi, in 1937, is an unsentimental and ultimately heartrending vision of racial injustice."
The Perfume Collector by Kathleen Tessaro
I liked that this book had quotable quotes and other things, but I saw where the entire plot was going from a few chapters in. Overall, I felt the plot could be better (and less predictable) as it seems to be a very popular plot with mainstream books nowadays (and even before nowadays). I can't say more without spoiling, but it still earned 4 stars due to its characters and imagery. Who thought perfumes would work so well in books? Not this gal.
In the Blogosphere:
Greer Macallister's The Magician's Lie, an involving tale of deception, female agency, and fin-de-siècle magic by Sarah of Reading the Past
5 easy ways to be polite... by Kate of Diary of an Urban Housewife (because not everyone knows how to).
Art it Up! (41) – How to make mini books by Tabitha of Not Yet Read, because we all need to make some of these cute little things.
A book review of Magic Breaks (Kate Daniels #7) by Ilona Andrews, wherein Erin (Paperback Stash) perfectly describes my feelings of it.
ARC REVIEW: Ink Deep by Renee Lovins by PurpleBook of Way Too Hot Books, with reasons as to why she didn't like it as much as she thought she would.
In My Life:
So lately, instead of obsessing about books, as I'm wont to do, I've been thinking more and more on starting my seedlings early- specifically my annual flowers. Last year they didn't bloom until July (which was a long wait for me), but when they did, they were spectacular:
|Blue and purple is the color of almost everything I like.|
I actually haven't had store-bought lobelia and alyssum do that well, so planting them earlier this year might be a better choice, despite the fact my "growing" porch (a 1903 sun porch with thin glass windows) will still be freezing. I think I'll use my upstairs window area to start the flowers, while the rest (vegetables, squash, etc.) will wait until March for me to plant them.