Reading Thursday: The TO BE READ Pile

toberead_fallenpeach

I don’t know about you,  but I have a massive pile of books that I intend to read someday. Most of them I picked up at used bookstores or tag sales along the way, a small portion I bought at a bookstore and just never read and at least two were gifts. The problem, for me at least, is that I love to re-read books. Also, I read a lot of series books. So if a new one is coming out I feel like I should re-read at least the latest one in the series. And right now there are at least three different authors coming out with new books in series’ that I read. For the curious those authors are Robin Hobb, Diana Gabaldon and now Anne Rice. I feel like there is a fourth, but I can’t think of who it is right now.

What all this means is that my “to be read” pile has been neglected a lot this month. And may continue to be neglected for the next couple months. But it’s there and keeps growing. Maybe I’ll try to alternate between a new and old books for April.

How big is your  “to be read” pile? Tag me (@fallen_peach)  in a photo of yours on instagram, I’d love to see what you have on deck!

Reading Thursday: Do you Stop Reading when You Aren’t Enjoying a Book?

edgar sawtelle instagram by fallen_peach

This Reading Thursday I want to pose a question to you: Do you stop reading a book once you realize you aren’t enjoying it anymore? Or do you push through?

I finally finished reading The Story of Edgar Sawtelle and about halfway through I almost stopped.

Having finished it, I almost wish I had stopped. The book is beautifully written, but I started getting bored halfway through (and a friend had already noted the direct similarities to Hamlet so I should have known what was coming) and the end …. was more poetic than explanatory, which kind of annoyed and disappointed me. In the end, it isn’t a book that I enjoyed and it isn’t something I’ll be keeping or really recommending.

I loved the beginning, though, so it really had potential to be a book that I would fall in love with. And I think that is what kept me reading to the end. There have been books that I’ve refused to finish, but lately I’ve been having trouble giving up books I’m not enjoying anymore. Nickel and Dimed is another example of a book I stopped enjoying but finished reading. The Sparrow is another.

Next time, I think I’ll try harder to just stop reading. But what about you? Do you have trouble putting away a book before it’s done?

Reading Thursday: In the Middle of …

Currently Reading by fallenpeach

Happy Thursday! I’m currently in the middle of three very different books – Hob’s Bargain by Patricia Briggs, The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski and Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook by Gary Vaynerchuk. I’m enjoying all three, but should probably buckle down into one of them or else I’ll never finish them! Reading time has been relegated to last priority lately, which makes me a little sad.

What are you reading this week?

ps. I’m using our In Tall Buildings, Caged Flowers and Blue Petals bookmarks … at least one of which is available in our shop!

Reading Thursday: Fiddlehead by Cherie Priest

readingthursday_fiddlehead

Welcome Back, Reading Thursday posts!

I missed talking more about books on this blog. Considering I MAKE BOOKMARKS and read all the time, it seemed weird that I wasn’t blogging more about them. So I’m bringing back my Reading Thursday posts!

These posts aren’t really reviews. I’m not a reviewer. It’s more a start of a conversation and me raving about the books I like and ranting about the ones I don’t.

Fiddlehead by Cherie Priest falls under the first category. I’ve been a fan of hers since I first picked up Boneshaker, and Fiddlehead does not disappoint as the final book in the Clockwork Century series.  A mix of alternate history, Steampunk and zombies with strong characters, both female and male, these books are just plain awesome.Clementine is another in the series, but that appears to only be available as an e-book right now. It’s equally fun.

In Boneshaker, the first of the series, we learn about how the Boneshaker was driven into the ground and released a yellow blight gas that turned most of Seattle’s citizens into zombies. We follow Briar Wilkes inside the walled off city in search of her son and learn about the people living inside the city using masks and tools and fighting zombies along the way. We also learn that the Civil War has been going on for a lot longer than it actually did and that the United States is truly split in two. And that zombies are beyond the walls thanks to a drug being made out of the gas.

The remaining books in the series follow different characters in different areas of the country and Fiddlehead brings a good amount of them together in an epic conclusion to end the war and deal with the zombies. Lincoln and Grant are characters in Fiddlehead, which I thought was handled really well (and with some fun surprises) but ultimately the story belongs to inventor and ex-slave Gideon Bardsley and ex-confederate current Spy Maria “Belle” Boyd and their separate missions to tell the world about the zombies and upcoming disaster and stop the disaster,  respectively.

Like I said, I’m not a reviewer. But I love these books. I love the characters, the world, the way the story is told. Have you read them? What do you think of Fiddlehead?

Photo: Our Pequot Book Sale Purchases

pequotbooks13_fallenpeach

Every Summer, the Pequot Library in Connecticut holds a massive massive used book sale. There are two tents and a room in the building full of books. And every year I come home with more to add to my “to be read” pile. This is the pile for both Matt and myself, although I know I want to read the books he picked and he might read one or two of the ones I did. It wasn’t as big as I thought it might be, which is good since I’m running out of room.

Have you read any of these? Which should I start with?

p.s. Outlander note – I’m almost through with Echo in the Bone by Diana Gabaldon. It’s the last in the Outlander series before the new one in March. Saturday I read a little bit and LITERALLY had to put the book down to finish another day because SO MUCH HAPPENED within like 30 pages. I was yelling at the book a lot and needed a day or two to absorb everything that happened. It’s going t be a long wait till the new one!

July Business Book Update: Craft Inc. Business Planner

Craft Inc. Book for June on fallenpeach

Inspiration struck on Saturday and I spent a nice chunk of the morning and early afternoon reading through the Craft Inc. Business Planner. I took lots of  notes and got lots of ideas. Overall, I really like the planner. I love that it is categorized out and has lots of tips scattered throughout from various professional sources.  There are a few sections I’m not ready for yet (trade shows and wholesale) but someday I will be ready for those too. As for the sections that I was ready for I refused to write in the book because I always end up erasing or changing or writing over because it was messy. I bought a regular 3 subject notebook to start, but eventually want to move notes and printouts into a 3 ring binder to keep everything organized.

One of the first things that struck me as I read through the book and started writing out mission statement ideas and business descriptions is that fallenpeach is about to turn 4 years old in September. We have had ups, downs, re-brandings, small breaks, big breaks, adventures, new products, successes and failures. I’m really excited about the upcoming year or two. I have a lot of ideas running around my head and provided I can make the time and get things done, we will have some exciting adventures coming up.

But back to the book. Another spark was looking at my revenue for the past almost four years. I’ve never really looked at it past a yearly glance at tax time. I know this business isn’t making a lot of money, so why bother was my thought. But it really was fascinating to look and see what months were good, what months were terrible. I also noticed that there were a lot fewer months with zeros in 2012 than the years before, which means things are getting better slowly but surely.

My homework from the Craft Inc. Business Planner:

1. I need a mission statement. All over the web I have a few different descriptions for fallenpeach and for myself. I want something more cohesive that I can use.

2. Marketing and Advertising. I’m not quite as all over the place on this, but there is a lot of work to be done here. I rarely remember about Facebook or Google + and focus mostly on blogging, Twitter and Instagram. I always forget that I have a small mailing list. I need to somehow find a way that works for me to balance out all of these. I need to decide for sure whether I’m going to focus on all or just add one more. I also want to find blogs to possibly advertise on.

3. Start thinking about a Press Kit.

These will all take some time, but it’s a start. I think I will aim to get at least the first two done by the fallenpeach anniversary if possible, 2014 if not possible.

Have you read Craft Inc. Business Planner? What did you think of it?

Reading Thursday: The Fiery Cross by Diana Gabaldon

Instagram photo of Fiery Cross book by fallenpeach

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The Fiery Cross is the 5th book in Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series. And it took me a ridiculously long time to finish reading it.

I love this series. The characters are beautifully written, the mix of genres is fantastic and I’m always happy to dive back into Claire and Jamie’s world. But Fiery Cross was lacking something. It felt slow moving and a bit boring at times. I still cared about the characters, but the plot was moving way too slowly for me. I kept wanting to take breaks from the book but trudged on instead because I didn’t want to forget what was happening. I think I read every moment of every day that the characters experienced. And then … the last 30 pages or so were … awesome. Things happened at a quick pace and all of a sudden I remembered why I love these books and started getting ready to dive into the next one. What I don’t understand is why it took that much of the book to get to that point. I realize that these books are epic and there was a lot to set up, and probably even more to set up for books to come, but I’m hoping that the next book moves a bit faster than this one did.

Have you read these books? What did you think of The Fiery Cross?

P.S. Have you added me on Instagram yet?