Thursday, December 31, 2015

2016 #BookishResolutions

Because Reading is better than reali life

It’s time for a brand new challenge for the New Year: 2016 Bookish Resolutions Challenge hosted by Laura @ trips down imagination road and Michelle @Because Reading. The challenge itself is a personal one, though we do have a few different rules to last year and an extra giveaway half into the year!

You can sign up anytime between December 1st to March 1st, the challenge starts January 1st and ends December 31st. The 2016 Bookish Resolutions Challenge is about setting New Years Resolutions for books and book blogging (though we’re not too mean…one of your resolutions can be a personal goal!)

You can sign up via blog post, Facebook, Twitter or Goodreads!

We have changed some things around this year to make it more interactive and we added two giveaways and a few twitter parties.

Each month Laura and I will have an update post with a link so you can share with us how you are doing.


*This is a year long Challenge it starts January 1st 2016 and ends December 31, 2016
*You have 3 Main goals to choose from; Blogging Goal, Reading Goal or Personal Goal
*You must pick at least 2 Main goals and each main goal must have at least 1 to however many sub-goals (except Blogging Goals you need a minimum of 3) as you would like (see below for a list of examples)
*Create a sign up post and add it to the Linky on this post (sign up before March 1st)
*On the 30th of each month (and the 29th for February) create an update post about your goals and add the post to the Linky that will be on Laura’s or My blog
*This is a year long challenge once you do a sign up post you can add or take away goals as you would like BUT on Jan 1st you will no long be able change the list.
*There will be two giveaways
*We are also having 3 Twitter Parties.
*Use the Hashtag #Bookishresloutions to update us on how you are doing throughout the year.
*Laura and I have made Goal Posts so you can see how to set up your post. This will also help if you are confused by how the challenge works. You can find Laura’s Post HERE and My Post HERE.

- See more at:

Reading Goals ~
• Complete 6 number of challenges this year
(This challenge does not count towards the total. Mini-challenges within a bigger challenge do not count separately)
• Listen to 12 number of audio books this year
• Read 12 number of paperbacks this year/per month
• Read 2 number of classics this year
• Read 10 number of books that I already own
• Read 6 number of non-fiction books
• Participate in 3 number of read-a-thons (read-a-thons as a part of larger challenges count separately)
Blogging Goals ~
• Fix tags on blog
• Redo layout or update design
• Visit 10 amount of blogs a week
• Update calendar once a week
• Update Pages on blog
• Write 1 review a week
• Respond to comments as they come in
• Create a Blog/Review Schedule (e.g. using a spreadsheet)
• Take part in a meme every month for the whole year
Personal goals :
• Start writing that book you always wanted to write (Family Genealogy)
• Exercise more
• Do random acts of kindness through the year

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

2016 Alphabet Soup Reading Challenge

January 1, 2016 - December 31, 2016
This is my favorite Challenge!
The Alphabet Soup Challenge means that by December 31, 2016
your bowls must be full of one book for each letter of the Alphabet.
Each Letter Counts As 1 Spoonful

This challenge will run from January 1st, 2016 until December 31st, 2016.
You can join anytime. You do not have to review the book. Books can come from any genre.
You do not need to link up each spoonful.
Make a page or a post or a GoodReads shelf where you will keep track of your spoonfuls. I keep track of mine on my Escape With Dollycas Challenge Page.
Crossovers to other challenges are allowed and encouraged!

It’s an alphabet challenge!!! The challenge is to read one book that has a title starting with every letter of the alphabet.
You can drop the A’s and The’s from the book titles as shown below.
The First Main Word Needs To Be The Letter You Are Counting
Except For those pesky Q, X AND Z titles the word that starts with the challenge letter can be anywhere in the title.

So there are two different ways you can set up your own A-Z Reading Challenge.
A – How I plan to do it: Make a list on your blog from A-Z. Throughout the year, as you go along, add the books you are reading to the list. Towards the end of the year, you can check and see which letters you are missing and find books to fit.
B – Make a list now of 26 books, picking one for each letter of the alphabet. For example: A – The Art of Murder by Elaine Viets B- Breach of Crust by Ellery Adams C –Copy Cap Murder by Jenn McKinlay D – Devonshire Scream by Laura Childs etc.
Books can be read in any order and all formats – print – e-book – audio – are acceptable for this challenge!

Ready to join??

Non-bloggers you can join too! Just keep track any way you wish and enter a link belowif available or sign up in the comment section. You can even set up a special shelf to help you keep track!
Follow Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book as there may be special announcements made about the challenge.
You can also join on the Facebook Event at Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book if that is easier for you.
This reading challenge event is hosted by Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book.
For more information and to sign-up, please see this post.

Blogging Better New Year’s Resolution Reading Challenge

January 1, 2016 - December 31, 2016
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what I want to get out of my blog in the coming year. I know I’d like to continue growing, both in number of followers and follower engagement. I think I’d like to do more actually tracking my stats and seeing what’s working. I’d also like to get really good at one social media platform other than twitter and I’d like to explore the possibility of making money from my blog in a way that wouldn’t annoy anyone reading it. So, with those goals in mind, I’d like to do more reading about blogging to see what I can learn. I’m sure I’m not the only one thinking about how to improve my blog in the new year, so I’d also like to invite all of you to join me for a Blogging Better reading challenge.
Like Andi of Estella’s Revenge (hosting the #ReadMyOwnDamnBooks reading challenge), I’m all about you do you kinds of challenges, so the rules you follow for this challenge will be your own. Here’s my plan:

• Read at least one book about blogging each month
• Implement at least one suggestion from each book, unless I think a book has no useful advice
• Do a post each month reporting my progress
• And… that’s it! Keeping it simple.
Here are some of the books I’d like to read:

Don’t Fall Down the Rabbit Hole Blogger’s Playbook
Blog Events by Amanda Shofner
ProBlogger by Darren Rowse, creator of the blog of the same name
The Art of Social Media by Guy Kawasaki
How to Blog for Profit without Selling Your Soul by Ruth Soukup
Books I’ve already read that might inspire your list include:

Blog Inc
The Rough Guide to Blogging
The Huffington Post Complete Guide to Blogging
This reading challenge event is hosted by DoingDewey.

Monday, December 14, 2015

2016 What an Animal Reading Challenge IX

Welcome to the 2016 What an Animal Reading Challenge IX. I began hosting this challenge in 2010, when I took it over from Kristi at Passion for the Page. I love reading books that feature animals and am going to host this one again. I hope you will join me.

The challenge will begin on January 1st. Read on for more details...

The rules are really simple...

1. Read at least 6 books that have any of the following requirements:

a. there is an animal in the title of the book

b. there is an animal on the cover of the book

c. an animal plays a major role in the book

d. a main character is (or turns into) an animal (define that however you'd like).

Level 1 - Read at least 6 books

Level 2 - Read 7-12

Level 3 - Read 13-20

Level 4 - Read 21 or more

2. The animal can be any type of animal (real or fictitious)--dog, cat, monkey, wolf, snake, insect, hedgehog, aardvark...dragon, mermaid, centaur, vampire, get the idea...

3. Challenge runs from January 1, 2016 to December 31, 2016. That’s a full year to read at least 6 books. 

4. Books can be fiction or nonfiction.

5. You may make a list of books at the beginning of the challenge or you can just list them as you find them.

6. Book titles may be swapped out at anytime (assuming you made a list to begin with).

7. Crossovers with other challenges are permitted and encouraged.

8. You don't have to have a blog or write a review, but you can if you want to.
 If you don't have a blog, just post in the comment section that you'd like to join. You can post your books in there. Or you can sign up by joining my group on Goodreads for this challenge by clicking here.

9. Books can be in any format of your choice (print, audio, ebooks)

This reading challenge event is hosted by Socrates' Book Reviews....
​For more information and to sign-up, please see this post.

I think I will go for Level 2 - 7-12 books

1 An Armadillo in New York by Julie Kraulis
2 Mermaids on Mars by Nancy Guettier
3 Over-Schedule Andrew by Ashley Spires
4 Dog Number 1, Dog Number 10 by Ami Rubinger
5 The Bear Who Couldn't Sleep by Caroline Nastro
6 The Green Umbrella by Jackie Azua Kramer
7 Herbie's Big Adventure by Jennie Poh
8 Let's Go, Dear Dragon by Margaret Hillert

2016 Crafty Cozy Challenge

2016 Crafty Cozy Challenge!!

January 1, 2016 - December 31, 2016

After book blogging and participating in reading challenges for a couple of years now, I have decided to host my very first reading challenge . . . so welcome to the 2016 Crafty Cozy Challenge! I of course love to read and always like to start looking for unique, fun reading challenges about this time of year – something to expand my reading, a challenge to most importantly have fun with! So here we go . . . I hope you will join me and most importantly have tons of fun along the way!!

You may be asking yourself “what is a crafty cozy?” A crafty cozy is any cozy mystery that is centered around the theme of crafts and crafting – i.e., stitching, knitting, crocheting, papercrafting, scrapbooking, painting, glassblowing, . . . if its any type of craft, it counts for this challenge.

Here is how the challenge works:

The challenge runs from January 1, 2016 to December 31, 2016.

Sign up for the challenge using the link below. Please help spread the word about this challenge by writing a post on your blog. Please write and publish a post on your blog stating your intent to participate. In your post please somewhere include the challenge graphic and a link back directly to this post.

Come back to the blog starting in January to post your reviews via a link in the post. At the end of every month I will randomly choose 1 entry/review for a $5 Amazon gift voucher sent by email to the recipient. There will be a new link for reviews posted every month.

Crossovers from other challenges are absolutely alright!!

Don’t stress . . . and have fun reading!

What if I don’t have a blog to post reviews on?

No problem at all. You do not need to have a blog to participate in this challenge. I want it open to all. Simply post a comment on this post stating your intent to participate and come back to post your review or mini-reviews of the books you have read.

Please, please have fun along the way. Ask me any questions you may have . . .

Ready . . . set . . read . . .

This reading challenge event is hosted by Books Are Life – Vita Libri.
​For more information and to sign-up, please see this post.

Release Day Launch/#Giveaway : THE FIX-UP by Tawna Fenske







TheFixUp_500Uncovering this sexy geek’s charm is easy. Keeping her hands off of him is impossible.

While he may look like the love child of a movie starlet and an NFL linebacker, Ben Langley has the people skills of a half-drowned porcupine. Why socialize when there are chemistry labs and bad sci-fi flicks? If he has any hope of taking the helm as CEO of the family business, Ben needs an image makeover. Pronto.

Enter Holly Colvin, owner of First Impressions public relations and branding firm, and the woman who just saved Ben from the clutches of an over-attentive sales clerk. Holly’s rebranded hundreds of companies in her career, but she’s never rebranded a person. The guy clearly needs help, though, and she’s just the woman for the job.

With the clock ticking for them both, Holly and Ben face off over wardrobe malfunctions and business jargon that sounds a lot sexier than it should. But can Holly make Ben into the man he thinks he should be without losing the man she’s starting to love?



AMAZON *** IBooks *** B&N *** KOBO *** AMAZON UK








“Uh, Holly?”

The sound of Ben’s voice from the dressing room stall jarred her from her incessant planning.


“I’m having a bit of a problem here.”

“What sort of problem?” She stood up, ready to help. “What’s wrong?”

“There’s a thread or something caught in the zipper. I can’t get the pants off.”

She hesitated, resting a hand on the wall of the dressing room. “Do you want me to help?”

“You know, this really isn’t how I envisioned you offering to remove my pants.”

She felt the heat creeping into her cheeks again, torn between the embarrassment of the situation and the thrill of knowing he’d basically just admitted he’d thought about her taking off his pants.

It was a joke. Don’t get too excited.

“Should I go find Marcus?”

“Who’s Marcus?”

“The clerk. That’s what his nametag said, anyway.”

“I should pay more attention to stuff like that.”

“There’s your first lesson in public relations—always look for nametags.” She lowered her voice a little and glanced toward the door. “And based on the attention Marcus was paying to you, I get the sense he wouldn’t mind taking off your pants. What is it with you and sales clerks?”

Ben muttered something unintelligible that was probably some sort of engineering curse. “I’m about five seconds from whipping out my pocket knife and cutting the damn things off my body.”

“Don’t do that! They’re the only pair in your size and they don’t even need to be tailored.”

“I’ve been at this for ten minutes already.”

“Are you sure you’re sliding it the right way?”

“I have a doctorate in engineering,” he muttered. “I’m pretty sure I understand how a zipper works.”

She hesitated at the edge of the dressing room, biting her lip. “Do you want me to try?”


a Rafflecopter giveaway

tawnaauthorphotoTawna Fenske is a romantic comedy author who writes humorous fiction, risqué romance, and heartwarming love stories with a quirky twist. Her offbeat brand of romance has been praised by Booklist as “A tame Carl Hiaasen on cupid juice,” and RT Book Reviews nominated her debut novel for contemporary romance of the year. Tawna is a fourth generation Oregonian who can peel a banana with her toes and who loses an average of 20 pairs of eyeglasses per year. She lives in Bend, Oregon with her husband, step kids, and a menagerie of ill-behaved pets.

Website Author Blog Author Twitter Author Facebook


2016 I Love Picture Books

For all of you of all ages who love picture books but find they don't qualify for your other challenges, or just want an excuse to read them. . .here's a challenge just for you!

Formerly hosted by Book Dragon's Lair. She's cutting back her challenge hosting for 2016 and passed the baton to me.


Challenge runs from January 1, 2016 to December 31, 2016. Sign up is now through December 1, 2016.

Read picture books.

Pick a number and go for it. Twelve too easy? Go for 20. Piece of cake? Go for 40.

Books you own and library check outs count. So do ebooks and re-reads.

Please post about the challenge and sign up with a direct link.

A blog is not necessary, just link to where you talk about the challenge or a dedicated public shelf at goodreads or LibraryThing.

Write a review - 2 sentences or an essay, whatever works for you, but there is a minimum of 2 sentences for your review. Not sure what to write? How about something like, "The characters were a delight but the artwork was dreary. It was disappointing." I'll post a link up post each month for those who want to share. Reviews are not necessary but would be nice so we know which ones to read ourselves. :)

My goal is 50 or more. That sounds high, but I teach in a toddler room so I read a LOT of picture books. The challenge will be tracking them and remembering to write reviews!

This reading challenge event is hosted by Bea's Book Nook
​For more information and to sign-up, please see this post.

I think I will try to go with 20 books

1 An Armadillo in New York by Julie Kraulis
2 If You Were Me and Lived in Italy by Carole Roman
3 Over-Schedule Andrew by Ashley Spires
4 Mermaids on Mars by Nancy Guettier
5 A Tale of Two Daddies by Vanita Oelschlager
6 Two Shoes by Beth Raitt
7 Dear Santa, Love, Rachel Rosenstein by Amanda Peet, Andrea Troyer
8 Pickin Peas by Margaret Read MacDonald
9 A Color Game for Chester Raccoon by Audrey Penn
10 Dog Number 1, Dog Number 10 by Ami Rubinger
11 Candy Cane Wayne by Leela Hope
12 I Came From The Water Vanita Oelschlager
13 Big Cat, Small Cat by Ami Rubinger
14 A Tale of Two Mommies by Vanita Oelschlager
15 Being A Captain is Hard Wrok by Carole Roman
16 If You Were Me and Lived in …Egypt by Carole Roman
17 The Bear Who Couldn't Sleep by Caroline Nastro (Netgalley)
18 Cuba: Picture Book by Planet Collection
19 Korea: Picture Book by Planet Collection
20 Germany: Picture Book by Planet Collection
21 Guinea: Picture Book by Planet Collection
22 Fiji: Picture Book by Planet Collection
23 Alphabet Everywhere by Elliott Kaufman (Netgalley)
24 All About Forests by Mac Van Gageldonk (Netgalley)
25 The Green Umbrella by Jackie Azua Kramer (NetGalley)
26 Silly Monsters 1, 2, 3 by Gerald Hawksley
27 Alphazoo by Anastasya Shephard
28 Silly Cute Monsters A, B, C by Tanya Turner
29 Sri Lanka by Planet Collection
30 Helicopters by Planet Collection
31 Estonia: Picture Book by Planet Collection
32 ABC Come Play with Me by Sandie Lee
33 Herbie's Big Adventure by Jennie Poh
34 The ABC Train - Learn the alphabet!: A book with fruits and vegetables! by Andrew Becket
35 Abigail the Whale by David Cali
36 Meet the Denver Broncos by Zack Burgess
37 The Most Magnificent Thing by Ashley Spires
38 Let's Go, Dear Dragon by Margaret Hillert

Read The Books You Buy Reading Challenge 2016

Bought the book, you really want to read it.... and then it gets surpassed by review books or library books or other TBR books.

So this is a Reading Challenge to Read the books you buy. You don't buy books? Well then this challenge isn't for you. Now at the start of 2016 you won't be sure of what you are going to buy or how many books you will buy.

So far in 2015 I as I write I've read 32% of the books I bought this year, and I thought until I did the tally I was doing well. Statistics do not lie! I'd like to be in the higher end of 40-60% range at least. That's what I will be aiming for in 2016.

So - choose from one of the percentages below and go for it. Make a commitment post and link up below. List the books you buy in the post as you spend throughout the year and then mark off as you read them.

If you don't have a blog you can do this on Goodreads with something like a 'bought 2016' shelf and you'll easily be able to see at the end of the year how you've gone. Leave a comment on the post with a link to the shelf to signal your participation, if using Goodreads.

20% or less Money Sitting on the Shelf.

20 - 40% Making Inroads.

40 - 60 % Moderately Successful

60 - 80 % Maximising Returns

80 - 100% Mission Accomplished

Books have been bought in 2016 by you or you can decide to include from and including June 2015 buys. Anything previous to that definitely falls into the dusty TBR realm! There is a challenge somewhere in the book world for that!
Can be ebook, print book or audiobook
You can decide whether you include books bought in 2016 second hand or in book fairs etc.
You may adjust your level if needs be during the year.
Books for this challenge can also be included in other challenges.
Runs from 1st January to 31st of December 2016
I encourage you not to think this through too much, go on buying as you normally do - in a large or small way.

Authors write books, they deserve to be read and enjoyed and paid as well! So I know we love our review books, library books, 2nd hand books etc. But ... if you can - buy books as well.

There will be one mid year link up to share how you are going, in the beginning of July.

In December there will be the final link up to share where you reached. You may not reach your goal, but just link up to account for yourself!

The link ups just mean re linking your commitment post but updated.

In the July link there will be a $10 Amazon voucher giveaway prize for one reader among those who link up and at the end in December a $25 Amazon voucher or books to that amount from the Book Depository if it delivers to your country. Even if you don't get to where you hoped you can still link up, so long as you bought a book during 2016 and joined the challenge!

This reading challenge event is hosted by The Book Date.
​For more information and to sign-up, please see this post.

I haven't bought a lot of books lately, so I think I will go for the low end.

20% or less Money Sitting on the Shelf.

2016 I Love Libraries Reading Challenge

I Love Libraries was formerly hosted by Book Dragon's Lair. She's cutting back her challenge hosting for 2016 and passed the baton to me. This challenge is one of several library challenges I've done since started my blog so I'm delighted to be hosting.

It's no secret that I love my library and it's been a tremendous resource for me over the years, and not just for books. For this challenge, use your library to check out reading material - books, magazines, any sort of reading material that you are allowed to check out, physical or digital. The challenge runs January 1, 2016 to December 31, 2016.

The details:

Put a sign up post on your blog and link it below.
If you don't have a blog, make a dedicated goodreads shelf (or LibraryThing), make sure it's public, and link it below.
Any reading material that can be checked out of your library counts - print books, audio books, digital books, magazines, etc.
As part of your sign up post, briefly write why you like using your library - free books, internet access, a quiet place to work, whatever draws you to the library. If you don't have a blog platform, post it in the comments below.
Write a review - 2 sentences or an essay, whatever works for you, but there is a minimum of 2 sentences. Not sure what to write? How about something like, "The characters were a delight but the story was slow and confusing. It was disappointing."
There will be a post each month where you can link your reviews. Each linky will run for the calendar year.
Pick a level from the list below. You can move up as needed but you can't move down.
Books may overlap with other reading challenges.
board book - 3
picture book - 6
early reader - 9
chapter book - 12
middle grades - 18
Young adult - 24
adult - 36
just insert IV - 50

I've been going to libraries since I was a toddler. I've had a library for as long as I can remember. Over the years, I've checked out books, videos, and music; used their computers, free internet access, and their copiers and printers. I've researched papers, job hunted, and taken classes. I haunt the used books sales of all the local libraries. The librarians at the branch I use know me by name and when they see me come in, they go right to the hold shelf to look for my requests. :D

This reading challenge event is hosted by Bea's Book Nook
​For more information and to sign-up, please see this post.

My goal is Chapter Book - 12 books

2016 Challenge Challenge

The 2016 Challenge Challenge

January 1, 2016 - December 31, 2016

I’ve gotten really excited about all of the upcoming reading and blogging challenges!

I just had a massive brainwave and I have decided that since I haven’t always been successful in sticking with either reading or blogging challenges, why not challenge myself to complete X number of challenges in 2016?

And thus, the idea for the first annual Challenge Challenge has come to fruition!

I’ve created the Challenge Challenge mainly to help encourage me to actually complete the reading and blogging challenges I plan to register for this coming year.

Each of you out there who also struggle to complete challenges is cordially invited to join me on this challenging journey throughout 2016!
Simply plug your information into the Mister Linky widget below if you’d like to share your progress or just announce your participation!
You’re more than welcome to either link to a challenge-dedicated post or directly to your blog’s homepage. A participation announcement post is not required!

P.S. Also feel free to link up to your Goodreads or Twitter profile, if applicable, should you be a non-blogger!

The Challenge Challenge will run from January 1, 2016 through December 31, 2016.

As a way to keep track of challenges taken on and completed, I’ve created a challenge pledge and reward system!
Level 1 – Complete at least 1 reading and/or blogging challenge (Cool As A Cucumber)
Level 2 – Complete at least 5 reading and/or blogging challenges (Cinco de Challenge-o)
Level 3 – Complete at least 10 reading and/or blogging challenges (OCD: Obsessive Challenge Disorder)
Level 4 – Complete at least 15 reading and/or blogging challenges (Coo Coo For Cocoa Puffs)
Level 5 – Complete 20+ reading and/or blogging challenges(Insane In The Membrane)

Perhaps as 2016 moves along, I’ll have the chance to host a goodies giveaway for the ULTIMATE participant!

This reading challenge event is hosted by The Novel Orange.

​For more information and to sign-up, please see this post.

I'm looking to complete Level 2

1 2016 I Love Picture Books (Bea's Book Nook) - Completed

2016 Pages Read Challenge

I took over this challenge from Gina @ Book Dragon's Lair, no sponsored by The Crafty Engineer. The challenge runs from January 1st 2016 to December 31st 2016. Here are the rules:

1. Choose a Level
Level 1: 13,000 pages read
Level 2: 26,000 pages read
Level 3: 52,000 pages read
Level 4: 78,000 pages read
Level 5: 104,000 pages read
2. A blog is not necessary to participate. Feel free to link to a Goodreads shelf or another public profile where we can see your books read.
3. Reviews are not necessary but a list of books is. There will be a link up for anyone who wishes to post reviews.
4. Crossovers from other challenges count!
5. Books started before January 1st do not count.
Sign up below with direct links to where you will list your books (not your homepage) so we can follow along please.

I hope to get back to reading on a more regular basis and hope to read 26,000 pages in 2016.