The Year That Was ~ November 2009

A month really can feel like a year.  They both go by slowly and fly so quickly all at the same time, and of course I have lists for you.  What I tried to read, what I managed to read and what I want to read next month.  My list for December is kind of crazy and it’s one of the months when I am hideously short on time, so we will see how I do.

November List (Proposed)

  • Cranioklepty, by Colin Dickey
  • Daniel O’Thunder, by Ian Weir
  • In the Wake of the Boatman, by Jonathon Scott Fuqua
  • The Girl on Legare Street, by Karen White
  • The House on Tradd Street, by Karen White
  • In the Land of Cotton, by Martha A. Taylor
  • The Forest of Hands and Teeth, by Carrie Ryan
  • Shiver, by Maggie Stiefvater
  • Impossible Motherhood, by Irene Villar

November List (Actual)

  • The Carnivore, by Mark Sinnett
  • The Magicians, by Lev Grossman
  • Seven, by Jacqueline Leo
  • Daniel O’Thunder, Ian Weir
  • The Forest of Hands and Teeth, by Carrie Ryan
  • The House on Tradd Street, by Karen White
  • Shiver, by Maggie Stiefvater
  • Beautiful Creatures, Kami Garci & Margaret Stohl
  • Frankenstein, Mary Shelley
  • The Hidden, Tobias Hill

I actually stayed pretty close to my original list this time, probably because a lot of my reading was for either a blog tour, or That’s How I Blog! I am still adjusting to having the THIB! books on my schedule, in addition to taking the time out to do show related activities and hosting- I am still a little slow at everything so far as I develop a system.

I would have finished Cranioklepty, but I left it at the Farmers Market last week when I went to volunteer.  That’s a shame because it was a really good book and then I had nothing to do with myself on the train but people watch.  I’ll be getting it back when I go this Wednesday, because luckily someone was saw it and kept it for me.

Favorite Books This Month

I really liked The Carnivore, Beautiful Creatures and Seven.  They stood out from the pack for me this past month.

December List (Proposed)

  • In A Perfect World, by Laura Kasischke – I actually finished this one already.
  • When She Flew, by Jennie Shortridge – Finished this one too.  Review tomorrow for a TLC Book Tour.
  • What the Witch Left, by Ruth Chew – I am so excited to read this.  The Wednesday Witch is one of my favorite books and I was so excited when Dawn suggested that we read it and What The Witch Left for our Twenty Minute Book Club.  I haven’t read this one but, I don’t think I can go wrong with Ruth Chew.
  • Dragon House, by John Shors – I started reading this one over the weekend and the story is shaping up nicely so far.  I definitely want to read more and see what happens.
  • Shanghai Girls, by Lisa See – I think Peony in Love is my favorite Lisa See book, which surprises me because of the way that I felt when I first stated reading the book.  The heroine dies pretty much straightaway
  • Battle Royale, Koshun Takami – I’m reading this with my online book club and I have to admit that I am rather daunted by its size and subject matter.  Hope it’s a good one.
  • Liar, by Justine Larbalestier – Twenty Minute Book Club strikes again.  I can’t wait to discuss this controversy-sparking book about a young pathological liar with Lenore, one of my favorite book bloggers.  I want KingRat to join us in the discussion.  I already put in a request on Twitter. Hopefully we can make it happen.  He said, “Perhaps.”
  • The Last Days of the Lacuna Cabal, by Sean Dixon – I’m discussing this book about a strange book club that does re-enactments of the books they read at their meetings with my book club at home.  It seems really strange.  I picked it, so I hope they either like it or hate it enough for a good discussion.
  • Swan Thieves, by Elizabeth Kostova – I am halfway through this one and I am loving it.  I started reading it over Thanksgiving weekend and chatting about it with Heather from A High And Hidden Place.  We both have been similarly intrigued and are trying to piece together the mysteries that bind a psychiatrist and his recalcitrant patient.  I have haven’t been able to get back to it because I have a few other things to finish up, but I have been snatching moments here and there to advance a little bit.
  • The Recipe Club – The name says it all, and I Have read a few chapters and the story is intriguing- about rediscovering and repairing a broken friendship.  I want to see what is at the bottom of them falling out all of those years ago.
  • Sense and Sensibility Sea Monsters, by Ben Winters & Jane Austen,  – I think I have said before that this is my least favorite Austen books, I think Sea Monsters are necessary, don’t you?

Looking Ahead

So far this year, I have managed to either read or listen to 134 books.  I have to go through my reviews and cross-reference because I have been missing some stuff.  I read a few books in November that I only realized and noted that I had completed after looking at my month end review post for October.  My goal was to read 100 books over the year, and I even joined in on J. Kaye’s Challenge to do so, but my challenge lists didn’t come over when I migrated to self-hosted in March, and I was never able to put them back together again.

Other Stuff in November

That’s How I Blog!

In November, well really the tail end of October , I launched something that I had been thinking about since back in April.  I thought it would be fun to actually get to talk (as in hear their voices) to other book bloggers about the experiences that they have had while reading books and blogging about them, how they have changed and grown over the course of their blogging and reading, trends they have noticed.

This week on Tuesday, December 8th at 9:ooPM EST, I will be talking with Dawn from She Is Too Fond of Books about her  blogging experiences and about the Ruth Chew books The Wednesday Witch and What The Witch Left.  You can go to the show page to set a reminder for the show and please send me your questions (nicole at linussblanket dot com) for Dawn or better yet join us on Tuesday and call in!

This is the complete list of the That’s How I Blog! Show Schedule. Past chats I have done may be accessed through the links below.

There is also a That’s How I Blog! Twenty Minute Book Club Challenge & Reading List

Additional November Reviews

  • Locked In, by Marcia Muller
  • Black Mirror, by Nancy Werlin
  • Hate List, by Jennifer Brown
  • The Story of A Marriage, Andrew Sean Greer

Literary Feasts

  • Shiver, by Maggie Stiefvater
  • Heaven to Betsy, by Maud Hart Lovelace

Product Recommendation

  • Reading Wedge Pillow


  • Ginger, Chicken & Coconut Soup

That’s a lot of reading for December. Wish me luck!

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  1. You had an awesome November and an ambitious December lined up! I am so impressed that with everything on your plate you managed 134 books so far. I’ve tallied up mine for the year and the number is abysmal but it does give me that fire in my belly for next year!
    .-= Kathleen´s last blog ..Commentary: The Great Influenza =-.

  2. Man you had a productive month! Kudos to you 🙂

    Can’t wait to read your thoughts on Beautiful Creatures, I loved it.
    .-= Michelle´s last blog ..LRT Road Map – 12/6 =-.

  3. November, and 2009 in general, have been good for you! 134 books read and reviewed is very impressive.

    I’ll be reading SHANGHAI GIRLS early in 2010, too. I didn’t (yet) read PEONY IN LOVE, but really liked SNOWFLOWER.

    Looking forward to Tuesday evening, Nicole!
    .-= Dawn – She is Too Fond of Books´s last blog ..Tune into *That’s How I Blog* on Tuesday! =-.

  4. Re: Liar discussion, I didn’t say “yes” mainly because I’m not sure of my availability that far in advance. Send me email and I’ll see if it can fit on my calendar. I don’t often turn down chances to talk about books.
    .-= King Rat´s last blog ..Birkensnake Two =-.

  5. “The Last Days of the Lacuna Cabal” definitely seems like a love it/hate it book because it is WEIRD. I loved it, and I think it will make for great discussion with your book club. I’m pleased to see you’re reading it, because I don’t think I saw it on anyone else’s blog.
    .-= Jen – Devourer of Books´s last blog ..Harry Potter 7 Trailer! =-.

  6. Pingback: The Year That Was December 2009- A Monthly Review in Reading