Shiver me Timbers! – April BookBum Club Challenge!

Ahoy there me mateys!  A while back, I joined me first ever online book club sponsored by Zuky @ BookBum and hosted on both her blog and Goodreads. The reason I was excited about this club is because there are themes for the month but no set reading list.  Now I be a major mood reader and so the lack of required reading appeals to me.  I participated for the first time in March and enjoyed meself so much that I knew I had to continue.  So why a challenge?

Well me hearties, the theme for this month be “short and sweet” or otherwise “read a book that’s under 200 pages!”  It just so happens that I had looted four short books that I was hoping to read this month (mood depending).  Some be eArcs.  Some be books that have been patiently waiting their turn.  So what better thing to do then to challenge meself to read all of them for the book club and complete some other goals at the same time.  So the challenge begins!  Tonight I start the first read, all systems red, and will attempt to post four book reviews for BookBum Club during the rest of this week and finishing on last day of the month!  Nothing like waiting until the last minute.  Do join me everyday for an update on me progress!  Arrrrr!!!!

Always remember:

Q: How did the pirate acquire his ship so cheaply?

A: It be on sail!

Hardy har har!!

x The Captain

Previous BookBum Club Monthly Reviews

March 2018 – “And the award goes to – pick a book that has won an award!”


Shiver Me Timbers! A Tally . . .

Ahoy there mateys!  Me noggin’ has a lot to keep track of like pillaging, plunder, and booty!  So today’s goal be a tally.  Ye see, recently I again be pondering the important list of the 16 titles of the 2015 John W. Campbell award finalists.  I finally made it to the half-way mark but realized that many of said titles had never been entered into me log.  I get tired of having to always look things up in various sources.  So I decided to remedy this so that all of the information finally be in one place . . .

Books That Be Plundered – book titles link to Goodreads

  1. the race (Nina Allan) – this be the eighth and most recent book off the list.  For me review – click here.
  2. defenders (Will McIntosh) – this was a fun book from one of me favourite authors that deals with machines that humans create to defeat aliens.  But then the machines begin to fight humans!  I have reviewed four of Matey McIntosh’s novels here in me log but have read six of them altogether.  I still have two 2017 novels, one 2018 novel, and all of his novellas (five) to read.  To see me reviews of his work to date – click here and head to the letter “M is for Marooned!”
  3. afterparty (Daryl Gregory) – this be one of the earliest titles logged here.  Though I thought the topic would not be to me taste, the excellent writing and fun plot made this a very good read.  For me review – click here.  Also reviewed his novel spoonbenders which was excellent.  For that review – click here.
  4. the three-body problem (Liu Cixin, Ken Liu: translator) – this be sad to admit but I abandoned ship on this novel about 2/3 of the way through. The beginning was wonderful.  But then it was so slow and bogged down with what I think was the hard science fiction part.  I wish I could have finished it but didn’t feel intelligent enough to do so.  Weird.
  5. station eleven (Emily St. John Mandel) – one of the best post-apocalyptic books I have ever read.  Period.  I am just sad that I don’t have a log post of me impressions of the first time I read it.  I must read more of her work.
  6. lock in (John Scalzi) – I have read most of Scalzi’s work and featured him in me Broadside No. 5.  This is was just an okay read for me and not one of me favourites by him.  To see me reviews of his work to date – click here and head to the letter “S is for Starboard!”
  7. the martian (Andy Weir) – this was an absolutely fantastic book about a man who gets stranded on Mars.  It is funny and dramatic.  It had a surprisingly good movie adaptation too.  Though I do think the book is leaps and bounds better.
  8. area x – the southern reach trilogy (Jeff VanderMeer) – I tried this book and got to the lighthouse section in part one before bailing in despair.  This book has been described as “New Weird.”  I describe it as “No Plot.”  It has an interesting premise and some cool ideas and then does nothing useful with them.  Just confusion.  With more confusion in how they could possibly be making this into a movie.  Ugh.  I was extremely happy to abandon ship.
  9. a darkling sea (James L. Cambias) – okay so I apparently have read this one and promptly forgotten all about it.  I did enjoy it, at least so says me Goodreads rating.  A perusal of other crew members’ reviews did remind me of most of the plot and politics.  But forgetting about it completely afterwards doesn’t truly bode well for it.  Ugh.  On the upside that means that I have read nine of the sixteen books so I am further along then I thought.  Arrrr!

Books To Be Plundered – book titles link to Goodreads

  1. peripheral (William Gibson) – I didn’t remember what this book was about until I just looked it up again.  A game or a murder?  Yup that still sounds like fun.  Plus the first mate and I just had a great discussion about the author and his work.  This one has just moved up the list to be read.
  2. europe in autumn (Dave Hutchinson) – this is a spy thriller in the future described as “a thriller of espionage and the future which reads like the love child of John le Carré and Franz Kafka.”  I’m in.
  3. wolves (Simon Ings) – this is about augmented reality and I have to admit that it doesn’t sound super appealing.  And I don’t have any trusted crew reviews for this one to show me otherwise.  But I shall read it nonetheless.
  4. the first fifteen lives of henry august (Claire North) – okay I own this one and have tried to read it twice.  I made it partway through once and something distracted me and I had to put the book down.  Lots of time pasted before I could get back to it and by then me mood had changed.  But I genuinely believe that I will like this book once I fully read it.  I was introduced to her through the book touch which I enjoyed.  I have at least five of her novels on me ports for plunder list.
  5. the bees (Laline Paull) – it’s been described as both “The Handmaid’s Tale meets The Hunger Games” and “Charlotte’s Web meets the Game of Thrones.”  Either of those sound oddly appealing.  Plus most of me crew gave it hearty endorsements.
  6.  bete (Adam Roberts) – the blurb about animal intelligence makes me not want to read this book.  It sounds not to me taste.  But me crew seems to like it and it’s on the list so I will give it a try.  I did read an odd book of his called jack glass which I enjoyed and was super odd.  Hopefully this novel will be more of the same.
  7. echopraxia (Peter Watts) – this is book two of a series.  I do own book one called blindsight and hope that I like it enough to read this one.  I will not however read this one just to cross it off the list if book one turns out to not float me boat.  But I have high hopes.

Arrrrr me scads!  And there be the list.  Always remember:

Pillage first, then burn!

x The Captain

Shiver me Timbers! An Anniversary!

Ahoy there me mateys!  Guess what day it is?

So to celebrate me 2 year (b)log anniversary, I break it down . . .

2017 Books By the Numbers:

Number of Posts: 150

Books Reviewed: 121

Books that Walked the Plank: 2

Books that Forced an Abandoned Ship: 10

Books Off the Charts: 8

Books with Second Reflections: 4

Authors Profiled in Broadsides: 9

Parley with an Author: 1

Most Books Read by a Single Author: 5 (Jonathan Stroud)

Books by Gender (to the best of me knowledge): F (70/58%) M (49/40%) Non-binary (2/2%)

Books by Genre: Fantasy (34/28.10%) Sci-Fi (43/35.54%) YA (34/28.10%) Thriller (2/1.65%) Historical (2/1.65%) Literary (1/.83%) Non-Fiction (5/4.18%)

ARCS (thank ye kindly NetGalley & Publishers!!): 34/28.10%

Top Five Books Read in 2017:

with some cheatin’ because I’m a pirate!  Arrrrr!

the bear and the nightingale & the girl and the tower (Katherine Arden)

planetfall & after atlas (Emma Newman)

every heart a doorway & down among the sticks and bones (Seanan McGuire)

castle of water (Dane Huckelbridge)

cold-forged flame (Marie Brennan)

Top Five Popular Reviews of 2017:

the sleeping dragon (Joel Rosenberg)

feel me fall (James Morris)

artemis (Andy Weir)

gilded cage (Vic James)

red sister (Mark Lawrence)

Me Top Five Personal Favourite Posts of 2017 (in no particular order):

river of teeth & taste of marrow (Sarah Gailey)

ride a mule (M.H. Boroson)

jade city (Fonda Lee)

three parts dead (Max Gladstone)

the sound of a wild snail eating (Elisabeth Tova Bailey)

Other Random Blog Stats:

First Book Review of 2017: shadowboxer (Tricia Sullivan)

Last Book Review of 2017: spoonbenders (Daryl Gregory)

Most Commented Post of 2017: 21 – the sea of rust (C. Robert Cargill)

Comments: 1,757 and counting

Top 3 Commenters:  the Bookstooge, Sarah @ brainfluff, and danielle @ booksvertigoandtea

Books on me Ports for Plunder List (i.e. TBR to ye Landlubbers): 1063 and counting

Current Crew Members (i.e. Followers to ye Landlubbers): 527 and counting

If ye want to see all the books I’ve read by category visit: this map legend

If ye want to see all the books I’ve read by author visit: this map legend

To read 2016’s anniversary post #1 click here!

So welcome to me crew ye scalawags, seadogs, and fellow explorers!  Let’s drink some grog to another year of sailing, plunderin’, and adventurin’ on the high seas!

Always remember:

Q:  How can you tell a pirate has fallen for modern technology?

A:  It’s the iPatch that gives it away!

Hardy har har!

x The Captain

Shiver me Timbers!

Ahoy there me mateys!  So as many of me crew of scalawags, seadogs, and fellow explorers knows today is Xmas (in the part of the world I am in anyways).  Now as I am a Scroogey-Grinch whose only joy in this holiday is pillaging christmas baked goods, I thought I would share one of me more favorite anti-xmas shanties.  Listen to it at yer own peril!  And enjoy:

For those that celebrate the holiday, I hope yer holiday is all ye want it to be.  For the rest of us . . . a regular day on the high seas!

Always remember:

Q:  What did the Pirate Santa say?

A:  Row row row!

Hardy har har!

x The Captain

Shiver me Timbers!

Ahoy there me mateys!  So there have been rough seas lately with the additional trouble of feeling under the weather.  When not fighting fer survival so me and the crew didn’t capsize,  I was shivering in me bunk lamenting me physical state and trying not to keel over.  The storm has subsided a bit so I again be interested in the larger world outside me littl’ patch of ocean.  And so when checkin’ in with me crew in other places of the world, I saw this:


It was a sight fer sore eyes and limbs!   There is now sunshine on the horizon and a jaunty feel in me step.  So welcome to me crew ye new scalawags, seadogs, and fellow explorers!

Always remember:

Q: What did the pirate say during the winter storm?

A: Thar she snows!

Hardy har har!

x The Captain

Shiver me Timbers! – A Challenge Begins

Ahoy there me mateys!  A while back I read the book the screaming staircase which is book one of the Lockwood & Co. series by Jonathan Stroud.  As I said in that review . . .

“This was the perfect read for the beginning of Spooktober.  Ghosts!  The story is set in England where several decades ago the Problem began.  Paranormal phenomenon became widespread.  The catch is that only children and young adults can see and deal with the unsavories.  Society has adapted and agencies have sprung up to deal with the problems.”

I very much enjoyed the first book and found out this . . .

“Side note: Apparently the fifth and final book of this series was just released in September!  I think I may try to read the other four this month if I can track them down.  Challenge accepted!  ::brandishes cutlass::  Arrrr!”

Well me hearties.  I managed to loot the four other books so the challenge begins!  Tonight I start the second book in the series and will attempt to post four book reviews of the four remaining books in the series in the next four days!  Do join me everyday for an update on me progress!  Arrrrr!!!!

Always remember:

In case his ship is sunk, every pirate carries a bar of soap with him at all times.

You know, to wash him ashore.

Hardy har har!!

x The Captain