Saturday, April 25, 2015

Dewey's 24-Hour Read-A-Thon Updates

So here are my updates on my read-a-thon day. Considering my hubby planned a surprise for me, I haven't gotten much reading done today. I have almost finished an audio book and participated in a few challenges though.

Hour 0 - opening meme
1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today? Canada!
2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to? Landline by Rainbow Rowell
3) Which snack are you most looking forward to?
I haven't decided on snacks yet today. So say tuned!
4) Tell us a little something about yourself! I'm Chrystal, a thirty-something, eclectic book lover, notorious list maker and wannabe photographer.  
5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? If this is your first read-a-thon, what are you most looking forward to? First time to this rodeo. I've seen it around many times, but finally decided to participate. Sadly, my hubby surprised me with an impromptu drive today, so looks like not much reading to be done for a big part of the day. I'm looking forward to checking off and audio book from my pile and since I switched up my pile at the last minute, I'm hoping to finish the review book I'm halfway through (Where They Found Her by Kimberly McCreight). 

new pile for today

Hour 1 -Go!
Listened to the first disc of Landline. Hubby took me on a day trip, so audiobook it is!

Hour 2 through 7 - more reading
Listened to disc 2-5 on the rest of the trip. Made some fun pit stops along the way and found some awesome places to visit this summer! 

Hour 8 - Book Spine Poetry
Since I'm home now, I can do a mini challenge. This one was fun!

Hour 9 through 11 - Switch up
Flipped over to my review book while Buffy the Vampire Slayer season 2 is playing in the background.

Hour 12 - update
1. What are you reading right now? Where They Found Her by Kimberly McCreight
2. How many books have you read so far? None completed, but audiobook is mostly done and I'm getting through my review book so that's something considering I've been away most of the day.
3. What book are you most looking forward to for the second half of the Read-a-thon? Through The Woods by Emily Carroll (should be an easy read as it's a graphic novel type book).
4. Have you had many interruptions? How did you deal with those? Road trip! Audiobook.
5. What surprises you most about the Read-a-thon, so far? Well I'd like to have participated more today, but life got in the way. I think I was surprised at all of the fun challenges there are. :) Nice to break up the reading time I suppose.

more to come...

Friday, April 24, 2015

Medium Dead by Paula Paul | Review & Giveaway

Medium Dead: An Alexandra Gladstone Mystery by Paula Paul
Published: April 14, 2015
Publisher: Alibi
Pages: 188
Received: for honest review from publisher via TLC Book Tours
Find online: Amazon | Goodreads

Medium Dead features Queen Victoria herself—and she’s rumored to have slain a local psychic in Newton-upon-Sea. Now the task of clearing her name and catching the real killer falls to Dr. Alexandra Gladstone.

Under Victoria’s reign, women are barred from calling themselves physicians, but that hasn’t stopped Alexandra Gladstone. As the first female doctor in Newton-upon-Sea, she spends her days tending sick villagers in the practice she inherited from her father, with her loyal and sometimes overprotective dog, Zack, by her side. 

After the corpse of village spiritualist Alvina Elwold is discovered aboveground at a church boneyard, wild rumors circulate through the charming seaside village, including one implicating a certain regal guest lodging nearby. Tales of the dead Alvina hobnobbing with spirits and hexing her enemies are even more outlandish—but as a woman of science and reason, Alexandra has no doubt that a murderer made of flesh and blood is on the loose.

Finding out the truth means sorting through a deluge of ghostly visitors, royal sightings, and shifty suspects. At least her attentive and handsome friend Nicholas Forsyth, Lord Dunsford, has come to her aid. Alexandra will need all the help she can get, because she’s stumbled upon dangerous secrets—while provoking a deadly adversary who wants to keep them buried.

A quick read due to the length of the book and the fact that it's suspenseful which keeps you turning pages until you've reached the end! I really liked Alexandra as she reminds me of myself - always trying to take care of everything, even if it's not my role. She's a doctor first, but seems more like a investigator or sleuth. It's quite the combo considering she can look at a crime scene and know the cause of death and pick up on clues. She's also strong willed and independent, which proves futile for Nathan trying to catch her good graces and attention since he's pretty much in love with her. 

When the murder is first discovered I was excited that the story involved a medium - I'm into that kind of thing lately (think Long Island Medium). I hoped that Alvina's spirit would keep popping up to guide them in the discovery of her murderer. They even held a seance to try to conjure her spirit which was a fun scene to read. The story is mostly about putting together the clues to find the exact person who murdered the medium and the coverup.

Nancy, Alexandra's assistant nurse and maid, is quite fun. She's a gossip and a believer in the paranormal. She's actually one of the people they get most of their information from as she collects gossip like bees collect honey. 

And now for Nicolas and his Mama. He has the hots for the doctor and makes it well known. He protects her and helps her in the investigation. He seems awfully sweet, but the also still loves his Mama, so I can see that as an issue for them down the road.

There is a sense of secrecy in Newton-upon-Sea as the Queen is in residence and no one is supposed to know, but everyone knows. The Queen only makes a few small appearances and I really wish she had been fleshed out in the book a little more.

I enjoyed this book quite well with it's spirits, seances, royalty and mediums. I'd like to see more about whatever blossoms between Alexandra and Nicholas, so I'll be on the lookout for more from Ms. Paul.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About the Author:
Paula Paul writes novels that touch the heart and challenge the mind. She has published 25 novels, some with major New York publishers and some with small presses. They include historical fiction, mysteries, YA and literary novels.

She is a native of Texas. She wasn't really born in Lubbock, as her profile info states. She was actually born outside of Lubbock on her grandparents' farm. She grew up on a ranch about 80 miles from where she was born and attended a country school where she graduated as valedictorian.

She has a degree in journalism and worked for several years as a print journalist, winning a number of state and national awards. She has also won national awards for her novels.

Monday, April 20, 2015

What's on your life list?

I've seen life lists around for a long time and I've had one myself for years. Funny enough, I haven't updated mine in a while and I'm topped out at 49 things I'd like to do. Some are mundane and others are exciting. I made the list with the thought of reaching 50 things to do, but now I'm thinking I can expand that to much higher... say 100? Obviously I'd need to come up with some new things to add, so I'll be brainstorming over the next little while to come up with some new ones. 

In the meantime, I'd like to try and scratch a few more off the list.

2. Send a secret to Post Secret.
7. Get a tattoo.
20. Plant a tree.
28. Visit a psychic/medium for a reading.

Those are the ones that I would love to complete this year. I'd love to get a tattoo of a star/shooting star in honour of my Mom. And I've been saying for years I'd love to visit a medium, but I really want to now as I'd love to see if my Mom reaches out. 

What kinds of things would be on your list?

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Guiltless Pleasures: Music

Normally people talk about their secret obsessions with television shows, certain genres of books, music, etc that are not always loved by others and they call them GUILTY PLEASURES. But in all honesty, I think they should be call GUILTLESS PLEASURES. Why should we feel guilty of loving something that others do not?

My last post was about TV SHOWS that I love! This week, it's music. 

I have a very eclectic taste in music (similar to my taste in TV shows). So just browse below at some of my favourite albums of late. I've been listening to lots of random music and it's enjoyable for my computer to just play through everything I own. It takes me back when it happens upon some older albums on my computer.

What are your favourite CDs? Do you have one that you wouldn't want others to know you secretly like?
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