Tag Archives: reading

September 2020: What Are You Reading?

I had a bunch of books I wanted to read for work this month (Massey Lectures), so that’s where most of my reading time went.  But I did manage to sneak in a bit of fiction. 🙂

Nonfiction books:

  • All Our Relations: Finding the Path Forward by Tanya Talaga
  • Race Against Time: Searching for Hope in AIDS-Ravaged Africa by Stephen Lewis
  • The City of Words by Alberto Manguel

Fiction books:

  • The Huntress by Kate Quinn

My favourite was definitely The Huntress.  My parents both read it and recommended it to me, and it didn’t disappoint!

So what have you read over the last month?  What was your favourite book?

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Update – Lots of Reading + Language Learning

Apologies for no post last week; I was on vacation from work and forgot. 😦

Over the last few weeks I haven’t really done any writing; I’ve been trying to read a whole bunch of Massey Lectures for an upcoming @ Your Library article I’m planning on writing for work (that’s the column the library I work at publishes in the local paper).  I’m hoping to get through another two more Massey Lectures (and in a perfect world I’ll have time to reread A Short History of Progress, but realistically that won’t be happening before the article is due).  Wish me luck!

I’ve also been continuing with the language learning, both Ukrainian and French.  I signed up for iTalki and had my first lesson in Ukrainian last week; I really liked the teacher and have another lesson booked for this weekend. 🙂  Right now I’m only planning on booking Ukrainian lessons on iTalki since there’s still a lot more French to learn on Duolingo…maybe once I eventually get to the end of the Duolingo French tree then I’ll try French on iTalki too (lol but that’s a looong way off from now).

So how have you been over the last few weeks?  What’s new and exciting?  🙂

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#WriteTuesday: The Return!

Happy September everyone!  Did you have a good weekend?  This weekend was Labour Day here in Canada; I was very happy to have an extra day off (although I mainly spent the time reading The Huntress by Kate Quinn – I needed to get through it for a book review that’s due this week)!  I am happy to say though that I also fit in some editing time.  I actually pulled out the notebook I use to break down my goals for the week into manageable chunks (I haven’t used it since February! 😮 ) – I used it just to plan out what I needed to do over the weekend (mostly reading and editing). I’m happy to say that I managed to get through pretty much all of my goals. 🙂

Oh, and earlier in the week, I was also a guest host on the Thunder Bay Public Library’s weekly show Read This Next, which airs on Fridays. Nicole and I chatted about video game books – we gave highlights based on games that are coming out this fall, talked about our personal video game book recommendations, and just generally chatted about video games.  I had so much fun!  Check it out here:

Other than that, I’m still working on French and Ukrainian, mainly on Duolingo.  I tried watching a movie in French without subtitles about a week ago; I couldn’t follow the dialogue, but thankfully I was able to follow the story thanks to the visuals.  Then a few nights ago I watched a movie in Ukrainian, but with English subtitles; my Ukrainian isn’t as strong as my French, but I was happy to be able to pick out a few words on my own here and there.  Oh, and I was really excited: while reading The Huntress, one of the characters has a tattoo on her foot in Cyrillic.  Even though it was in Russian, I was able to understand what it said (it was the numbers for six hundred and sixteen)!

So how’s your week been?  Anything new and exciting? 🙂

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August 2020: What Are You Reading?

I haven’t been doing a lot of reading lately, but I was excited to get Martha Wells’ Network Effect, the fifth Murderbot Diaries book, from the library when they began offering holds again.

Nonfiction books:

  • The Truth About Stories by Thomas King

Fiction books:

  • Network Effect by Martha Wells

My favourite was The Truth About Stories. It was a fantastic Massey Lecture that I really recommend!

So what have you read over the last month?  What was your favourite book?

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July 2020: What Are You Reading?

This month I finished my 25th book for 2020 (not counting the few graphic novels I’ve read this year, too)!

Nonfiction books:

  • Creative Visualization: Use the Power of Your Imagination to Create What You Want in Your Life by Shakti Gawain
  • Who We Are: Reflections on My Life and Canada by Elizabeth May
  • Educated by Tara Westover

Fiction books:

  • None!

I also read a few Maclean’s magazines.

I’m not sure what my favourite book was this month.  Both Who We Are and Educated were very interesting reads.  Elizabeth May looked at how the political landscape in Canada changed, particularly under Prime Minister Stephen Harper; I knew of some of these changes, but others were rather surprising.  Tara Westover’s book was about how she graduated with a PhD after growing up in a household where her father was paranoid and didn’t send his kids to school (his older boys went to school but were later pulled out). Her first day of school was her first day in university.

So what have you read over the last month?  What was your favourite book?

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June 2020 What Are You Reading?

This month I turned my attention to reading some of the many books people have lent me over the last few years.

Nonfiction books:

  • Life in a Thundering Bay: Voices from Thunder Bay’s Past. Edited by Tania L. Saj and Elle Andra-Warner
  • Iraq Under Siege: The Deadly Impact of Sanctions and War. Edited by Anthony Arnove

Fiction books:

  • Carry On, Jeeves by P.G. Wodehouse
  • Jane Foster Valkyrie: The Sacred and the Profane  by Jason Aaron, AI Ewing, and Cafu (Graphic Novel)
  • Invisible Woman: Partners in Crime by Mark Waid and Mattia de Iulis (Graphic Novel)
  • Overlord: the Undead King by Kugane Maruyama

I’m not really sure what my favourite was this month.  Pretty much everything that I read was good in its own way.  Invisible Woman: Partners in Crime was a fun spy story (why wouldn’t Invisible Woman be recruited for espionage?), both Carry On, Jeeves and Overlord: the Undead King were hilarious, and the two nonfiction books I read were interesting.

So what have you read over the last month?  What was your favourite book?

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May 2020 What Are You Reading?

As I mentioned in my April 2020 reading post, I wanted to finish several series of books where I needed to reread the first book or two before continuing on.  So that’s what a lot of my reading was this month:

Nonfiction books:

Fiction books:

  • Brisingr by Christopher Paolini
  • Inheritance by Christopher Paolini
  • Dust by Elizabeth Bear (reread)
  • Chill by Elizabeth Bear (reread)
  • Grail by Elizabeth Bear
  • The Jewels of Elvish by Nancy V. Berberick (reread)
  • A Child of Elvish by Nancy Varian Berberick

Oh, I also read a few magazines (mostly Writer’s Digest from 2018, a Food Network magazine, and a couple of photography magazines my dad gave me awhile ago).

I started Christopher Paolini’s Inheritance Cycle last month, and managed to finish the series this month (which in itself was a pretty big accomplishment since those books are big!)  Wanting a break from fantasy, I then tackled Elizabeth Bear’s Jacob’s Ladder trilogy.  I originally read the first book, Dust, quite some time before the second book, Chill; I didn’t really remember the story of the first book in enough detail though, so I decided to hold off on reading the third book until I had a chance to read all three together (I was also hoping that I might like Chill a bit more the second time around once it’s more in context with the events of Dust).  Once Jacob’s Ladder was finished, I then went back to fantasy for Nancy Varian Berberick’s Elvish Duology.  I remember loving the first book when I read it; unfortunately it took me years to find the second book, so by the time I did I honestly just couldn’t remember the first book at all.

My favourite of the rereads was Dust.  It was a different experience, knowing what was going to happen at the end (the ending was the only thing I really remembered of it from the first time I read it), but still, this is a fantastic book.  Of the non-rereads, I think my favourite was Inheritance; I thought that book was a very fitting end for the series.

So what have you read over the last month?  What was your favourite book?

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April 2020 What Are You Reading?

I’m sorry that I haven’t been posting much lately.  We had a death in the family and I’ve had a bit of a hard time coping – thanks to the pandemic, we can’t do the normal mourning things like getting together with family and friends.  My original plan was to fit in as much reading as I could, but I’ve had a harder time concentrating on stuff (and so I ended up rewatching a couple of shows, which is super unusual for me; I don’t normally watch much on my own).

That being said, at the beginning of the month, I did manage to fit in reading a few books:

Nonfiction books:

  • Writing Subtext: What Lies Beneath by Dr. Linda Seger

Fiction books:

  • Eragon by Christopher Paolini (reread)
  • Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman (reread)
  • Eldest by Christopher Paolini

Now that I’m staying home thanks to the pandemic, I thought it was a great time to get caught up on reading some of my books. This seems like the perfect time to hit up the series kind of like the Jeremiah Hunt trilogy where I need to reread the first book or two before continuing.  Three series immediately came to mind that were like that for me: the Inheritance Cycle by Christopher Paolini, the Jacob’s Ladder trilogy by Elizabeth Bear, and the Elvish duology by Nancy Varian Berberick.  As you can see from what I read this month, I started with the Inheritance Cycle (mainly because they’re huge! Being home so much is the perfect time to read them!) 😉

I read the first book of the Inheritance Cycle many years ago, but wanted to wait until the other books came out so I could read them all together (but I never did get around to it before because like I said, they’re huge!)  I’m now half way through the third book, Brisingr (I’m hoping to get back to reading it soon).

Good Omens got thrown into the mix because a couple of my friends from work wanted to start a book club since we’re not seeing each other like normal.  Good Omens ended up the consensus because pretty much everyone was happy to either read (or reread) it.

I’m also trying to spend some time working on my writing, which is why I fit in reading Writing Subtext.

Now with all that preamble, my favourite book was honestly Writing Subtext.  It gave me so much to think about within my own writing (and came at the perfect time when I’m trying to fix the dialogue in Memories).  It’s a short read, but definitely worth it if you’re a writer, too. 🙂

So what have you read over the last month?  What was your favourite book?

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#WriteTuesday – Beginning Edits on Memories

writing subtext cover

Seriously, this book is fantastic! I really recommend it. 🙂

Over the weekend I finally read the book Writing Subtext: What Lies Beneath by Dr. Linda Seger.  I’ve had the book for years but never got around to reading it (lol, such is the story of my life).  But now seemed like a great time to read it – I was hoping it might help me improve the dialogue within Memories.  Writing Subtext ended up a really great read – even as I was reading it I had all kinds of ideas for what I could do.  Unfortunately now comes the hard part: actually implementing all of those changes into the game.  I’ll hopefully be going over all the dialogue during the next bit to clean things up and start layering in some subtext to the story. 🙂

On top of that, I decided I’m going to implement something I considered a few years ago when I first started working on Memories: I’m going to add some branching dialogue options as you unlock more memories (and the corresponding emotions).  So once you’ve unlocked the second emotion, you’ll now have two dialogue options with NPCs, rather than just the one I originally came up with.  I started implementing this yesterday and got quite a bit changed already.  So I uploaded the new game files for my playtesting friend.  I haven’t heard back from him yet, so this is perfect; hopefully he hasn’t started playtesting yet and will be able to try the newer version instead!

So how’s your week been?  🙂

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March 2020 What Are You Reading?

I’m kind of proud of my reading this month: I finally read the entire Jeremiah Hunt trilogy by Joseph Nassise!  I read the first book, Eyes to See, several years ago, and for whatever reason, just never got around to the rest of the trilogy.  It got to the point where I didn’t remember Eyes to See very well (except that I really liked it), so I had to reread it before moving onto the newer books (that probably didn’t help me get back to the series).  So this month, I actually sat down and reread it (and it was just as good as I remembered, even though I honestly didn’t remember most of the story when I started!)

Nonfiction books:

  • None!

Fiction books:

  • Eyes to See by Joseph Nassise
  • King of the Dead by Joseph Nassise
  • Watcher of the Dark by Joseph Nassise

My favourite of the Jeremiah Hunt trilogy was definitely Eyes to See.  The premise is amazing (a man’s daughter goes missing, so he trades his eyesight for the ability to see ghosts in an effort to find her), and the book was just as good the second time I read it.

I also did some major spring cleaning this month and started going through the magazines I had piled up (I have a LOT!)  I went through seven issues of The Walleye (I couldn’t believe I had that many piled up!), and read 2 Cineplex Magazines, 1 Writer’s Digest, an issue of Journey (Lakehead University’s Alumni Magazine), 1 Woman’s Day, 2 First Magazines, and about 8 old Canadian MoneySavers.  Ive still got a bunch more to go (mostly more Writer’s Digests and Macleans, which I didn’t even get to this month), but I felt pretty magazined-out by Tuesday and needed to take a break from them.

So what about you?  Have you read anything good over the last month?

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