Category: authors (page 2 of 33)

Books Read in 2014: Final List

I feel like I kinda fizzled out towards the end of the year, but I still exceeded my goal of 75 books. Below are my 2014 reads, with favorites bolded for the heck of it:

The Librarian Next Door’s Yearly Reading Challenge – 2014:

    1. Pride, Prejudice and the Perfect Match by Marilyn Brant
    2. Dreaming of Mr. Darcy by Victoria Connelly
    3. The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce
    4. Romancing the Duke by Tessa Dare
    5. The Duke and I by Julia Quinn
    6. An Offer from a Gentleman by Julia Quinn
    7. The Viscount Who Loved Me by Julia Quinn
    8. Romancing Mr. Bridgerton by Julia Quinn
    9. To Sir Phillip, With Love by Julia Quinn
    10. It’s in His Kiss by Julia Quinn
    11. Savor by Monica Murphy
    12. An Unlikely Witch by Debra Geary
    13. The Chocolate Heart by Laura Florand
    14. The Chocolate Temptation by Laura Florand
    15. Love Irresistibly by Julie James
    16. Something About You by Julie James
    17. A Lot Like Love by Julie James
    18. About That Night by Julie James
    19. Once in a Lifetime by Jill Shalvis
    20. The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion
    21. A Hologram for the King by Dave Eggers
    22. Dear Mr. Knightley by Katherine Reay
    23. My Lady, My Lord by Katharine Ashe
    24. Unleashing Mr. Darcy by Teri Wilson
    25. The Bad Boy Billionaire’s Wicked Arrangement by Maya Rodale
    26. The Bad Boy Billionaire’s Girl Gone Wild by Maya Rodale
    27. The Wicked Wallflower by Maya Rodale
    28. Wallflower Gone Wild by Maya Rodale
    29. The Lowland by Jhumpa Lahiri
    30. Dark Witch by Nora Roberts
    31. Shadow Spell by Nora Roberts
    32. A Tale of Two Lovers by Maya Rodale
    33. Seducing Mr. Knightley by Maya Rodale
    34. A Groom of One’s Own by Maya Rodale
    35. The Tattooed Duke by Maya Rodale
    36. I Only Have Eyes for You by Bella Andre
    37. The Look of Love by Bella Andre
    38. Born in Fire by Nora Roberts
    39. Born in Ice by Nora Roberts
    40. The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd
    41. The Bad Boy Billionaire: What a Girl Wants by Maya Rodale
    42. It Happened One Wedding by Julie James
    43. Born in Shame by Nora Roberts
    44. Just One Year by Gayle Forman
    45. Just One Night by Gayle Forman
    46. Dubliners by James Joyce
    47. Three Weeks with Lady X by Eloisa James
    48. The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet by Bernie Sue & Kate Rorick
    49. Then Came You by Jill Shalvis
    50. The Luckiest Lady in London by Sherry Thomas
    51. Animal Magnetism by Jill Shalvis
    52. Animal Attraction by Jill Shalvis
    53. Rescue My Heart by Jill Shalvis
    54. Rumor Has It by Jill Shalvis
    55. Four: A Divergent Story Collection by Veronica Roth
    56. Insurgent by Veronica Roth
    57. A Good Debutante’s Guide to Ruin by Sophie Jordan
    58. I Adored a Lord by Katharine Ashe
    59. Allegiant by Veronica Roth
    60. The Chief by Monica McCarty
    61. Highlander Untamed by Monica McCarty
    62. It’s in His Kiss by Jill Shalvis
    63. Some Girls Do by Clodagh Murphy
    64. Highlander Unmasked by Monica McCarty
    65. Highlander Unchained by Monica McCarty
    66. Feathers by Debora Geary
    67. Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh
    68. A Dangerous Witch by Debora Geary
    69. He’s So Fine by Jill Shalvis
    70. Christmas Brides by Suzanne Enoch et al
    71. Instant Attraction by Jill Shalvis
    72. Instant Gratification by Jill Shalvis
    73. Instant Temptation by Jill Shalvis
    74. Misled by Kathryn Kelly
    75. One in a Million by Jill Shalvis
    76. It Must Be Your Love by Bella Andre
    77. Just to Be With You by Bella Andre
    78. The Way You Look Tonight by Bella Andre
    79. I Love How You Love Me by Bella Andre
    80. An Heiress for All Seasons by Sophie Jordan
    81. Blood Magick by Nora Roberts
    82. Tease by Sophie Jordan
    83. At the Billionaire’s Wedding by Maya Rodale et al
    84. Be Mine by Marquita Valentine
    85. Wild by Sophie Jordan
    86. Never Judge a Lady by her Cover by Sarah MacLean
    87. Shadowed Heart by Laura Florand
    88. Merry Christmas, Baby by Jill Shalvis
    89. The Marriage Bargain by Jennifer Probst
    90. Owning Violet by Monica Murphy
    91. The Marriage Trap by Jennifer Probst
    92. The Marriage Mistake by Jennifer Probst

Here’s to 2015!


Book Blogging in Turmoil

Well, at least we can never say life in the book blogging world is dull!

This past weekend, The Guardian newspaper published a story by an author that, frankly, pissed a lot of people off. I’m not going to link to the story, because I don’t want to give it any more of a signal boost than it’s already received. But surely, if you’ve been paying attention these last few days, you know what I’m referring to. (If you don’t, I might argue that ignorance is bliss, but you could also simply Google “Kathleen Hale.”)

I honestly don’t think I have much to add to the conversation. Many other bloggers (who are much, MUCH smarter than I am) have already written about this incident (*) from a variety of perspectives, including:

(* I hate calling this Hale thing an “incident.” It’s not. It’s so much worse. But I’m also mindful and a little bit wary about what I’m writing now, so I’m being careful with my word choice. In a way, I’m self-censoring. I don’t particularly like it, but there it is.)

My mother, who is one of the smartest people I know, routinely gives me good advice; the best advice she’s ever given me is that we can’t control what other people do or say. We can only control our reactions to them. This is, of course, much easier said than done, but it’s also true for so many different situations in life. We can’t change how other people think, but we can change and take responsibility for our own actions.

So, my two cents, for whatever it’s actually worth, comes down to this: don’t be an a$$hole. Whether you’re a blogger, an author, a publisher, a marketer, a reader or any combination of the above, just….don’t be an a$$hole. I feel like that’s both an obvious statement and a naive one, but really, it should be that simple.

And if you don’t want to listen to me, listen to the Dowager Countess:

Dowager Countess Memes

[Image from Funny or]

Book News, Oct. 11th

Happy October, bookworms. To paraphrase Anne (with an E) Shirley, I’m so happy to live in a world where there are Octobers. I like October because it means changing leaf colors, cooler weather and ALL THE APPLES. (Imma let you finish, but apples are totally > anything pumpkin spice.) Today, I’m visiting Newgrange, a UNESCO World Heritage site here in Ireland. I hope you’re enjoying yourself, wherever you are. And I also hope you enjoy the book news:

  • Bad Adobe! With thanks to Dear Author and Smart B*tches for bringing this to my attention, it turns out Adobe has been spying on you while you read. Adobe’s Digital Editions 4, often used to read e-books for various sources (many libraries with Overdrive use it, for example), tracks every book you read and sends that information back to Adobe in plain text format (i.e., a wildly unprotected format). It’s simultaneously an invasion of privacy and a data security issue, one the company apparently doesn’t see as a problem. Adobe did say it was “working on an update” for Digital Editions 4, though there’s no indication that update will, you know, stop recording every page and book you read and send that information to the company unencrypted. Some companies never learn.
  • Authors United’s fight with Amazon is about to get some reinforcements. Several high-profile authors, including Philip Roth, Salman Rushdie and Ursula Le Guin, have agreed to join AU in its fight against Amazon. The organization is hoping to put enough stress on Amazon and compel it to end its dispute with Hachette Books regarding the pricing of e-books. In a statement, Le Guin compared Amazon’s tactics to censorship, saying the conglomerate “deliberately [makes] a book hard or impossible to get” and decried Amazon’s use of that censorship “to gain total market control so they can dictate to publishers what they can publish, to authors what they can write, to readers what they can buy.”
  • J.K. Rowling almost broke the Internet and she’s probably laughing about that. Earlier this week, Rowling published a cryptic tweet, which Potterheads immediately began trying to decode. Many die-hard fans were convinced the tweet heralded the return of The Boy Who Lived, while Rowling herself took to Twitter to provide some clarification. In the end, the original tweet turned out to be an anagram for a sentence relating to Rowling’s upcoming Newt Scamander “prequel.” Rowling, meanwhile, prove once again that she is indeed smarter than the rest of us. And I’m okay with that.
  • Introvert children of the world, rejoice! Susan Cain is writing a book for you. Cain, author of one of my most favorite nonfiction books (Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking) signed a deal with Penguin Young Readers to publish of Quiet for children. The original was clearly geared towards adults, with discussions of workplaces and parenting choices. The children’s version will feature stories of children who have used their own introversion to their advantage. I’m certainly looking forward to this book (even having no children of my own) and I wish it had been around when I was a socially awkward young’un.
  • How do you say you’re sorry in Dothraki? You don’t! At least, according to the folks who came up with Dothraki for the Game of Thrones television show, you don’t. Now you too can become a Dothraki expert. Living Languages has released a Dothraki course, featuring more than 200 words, phrases, grammar explanations, notes and more. George R.R. Martin only created the barest foundation for Dothraki in his books; HBO hired linguists to help expand the language for use on television. At the very least, you could learn how to curse someone in Dothraki and not only would that person never know, but you also would get away with foul language in public. Sounds like a Dothraki to me!
  • Lastly, my name is Meredith and I love reading romance novels. And I’m not afraid to stand up (here in my little corner of the Internet) and admit it. If, however, you’re feeling a bit skittish about your own romance habit, Elyse at Smart B*tches has an excellent post in defense of romance novels. She aptly knocks down most of the arguments she hears against romance, pointing out that the romance genre and feminism tend to go hand-in-hand (books written about women, by women, for women = duh! feminist!) while also deconstructing the fallacious idea of “good” or “serious” literature. (I’ll take Sarah MacLean over Jonathan Franzen any day, thank you very much.) Read it. Be happy. Then read more romance!

As always, happy reading.

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