Third Quarter Update

Time for a third quarter check in. All I can say….worst reading slump of the year.

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TOTAL: 3

I had decided to start using an official monthly TBR list in hopes it will push me to finish books. I have a stack of about 10 books next to my bed that I started and just never seemed to finish. It was a rough slump and I’m hoping some basic organization will pull me out of it. I have a lot of catching up to do. So, without further ado, these are the books I finished in July, August, and September.

Mystery: 2

Non Fiction: 1

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The good thing? I loved every single one of these books! I’m going to stick with the positive on this one.

2018 Goals Check-in

Total Books Read

Goal: 50       Current: 19

Nonfiction Books Read

Goal: 12      Current: 6

I’m already working on my TBR for October and Non-Fiction November. Let me know if you have any suggestions!

Lindsay

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No Stone Unturned

No Stone Unturned: The Truth Story of the World’s Premier Forensic Investigators

by Steve Jackson

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A body stuffed in a car trunk swallowed by the swirling, muddy waters of the Missouri River. A hiker brutally murdered, then thrown off a cliff in a remote mountain range. A devious killer who hid his wife’s body under a thick cement patio. For investigators, the story is often the same: they know a murder took place, they may even know who did it. But without key evidence, pursuing a conviction is nearly impossible. That’s when they call NecroSearch International. NecroSearch boasts a brain trust of the nation’s top scientists, specialists, and behaviorists who use the latest technology and techniques to help solve “unsolvable” crimes, no matter how decayed the corpse, no matter how cleverly the killer has hidden the victim’s body. Now, for the first time ever, readers are taken on a fascinating, often-shocking journey into a realm of crime investigation of which few people are aware. Necrosearch’s most challenging cases are described, step-by-step, as these modern-day Sherlock Holmes’s detect bodies and evidence thought irretrievable, and testify in court to bring cold-blooded killers to justice.

July found me craving a good true crime nonfiction read. I had previously enjoyed The Poisoner’s Handbook, and was looking for something that focused on forensic science. But I also wanted a story that covered actual investigations (which is what I was looking for but didn’t get when I read Mad City) I was lamenting my need for a good true crime story to my friend TS Barnett and she suggested I check out No Stone Unturned. She shares my love for true crime and has great taste, so I immediately started the audio version.

I absolutely loved No Stone Unturned! The novel follows the creation of NecroSearch, a group of scientists dedicated to advancing forensic science and investigation. The story is expertly laid out, starting with the development of the ‘pig people’ organization and introducing key scientists and volunteers involved. Jackson outlines the science behind the different fields with include geology, archaeology, entomology, and sloberology! The science is presented in laymen’s terms; keeping the information relatable without utilizing and insultingly dumbed-down approach.

One of the best aspects of No Stone Unturned is the applied use of the science in individual cases. Parker focuses on one case at a time. For each investigation he provides information from the disappearance of the victim, the initial police investigation, the involvement of NecroSearch, and the results of the search. He even recounts the trials of the killers. Each investigation is different and presented unique problems which allowed the scientists of NecroSearch to help return lost loved-ones while also providing new data on developing investigation techniques.

And if that wasn’t already fantastic….the volunteers of NecroSearch are dedicated to working together as peers. They actively avoid egotistical battles and hold law enforcement in high respect. Jackson even shares how the group help each other handle the mental effects of working with violence, death, and missing bodies.

I do not have anything negative to say about the story. The complaints I saw from other reviewers, which are few, is the writing style can be dry and they wished for more details concerning the individual team members. I found the writing to be far from dry, but I did also read the audio version. (It was fantastic and well worth the listen).

No Stone Unturned is a nonfiction work I would happily recommend to anyone interested in true crime or forensic investigation. It provides a surprisingly hopeful attitude to a rather morbid topic. It even managed to bring me out of a frustrating reading slump. Pick it up! And please share your true crime suggestions, since I always need another book to read 🙂

Happy Reading!

Lindsay

Bookish Facts

Bookish Fact #6: My dad made me a history lover.

I am lucky in that both of my parents are readers. My mom prefers fiction and reads a lot of mysteries. My dad loves historical nonfiction. My mom may have been the driving force behind my love of reading, but Dad was just as influential on my reading tastes.

We only had one TV growing up, and evenings meant watching things together as a family. The channels were often tuned to a baseball game or some random educational program (How stuff Works, Myth Busters). Dad’s favorite was The History Channel…back went the programming was actually about history.

His favorites were the history of the military, baseball, the space race, industry, and of course aviation. (I happily admit that I adore all these topics as well) We went to museums as a family on a regular basis. He’s sat through hours of me retelling my lessons learned in my college history courses. And to this day he still calls me with book recommendations and requests.

My parents are the reason my nieces and nephews get books for gifts, because can anything really beat the gift of a good story? Have your parents, or some other awesome person, influenced your reading this way? Please share!

Lindsay

Second Quarter Update/Midyear Check-in

I have decided to do numbered quarterly updates instead of using the seasons. It’s just hard to call this a Spring Update when the heat index has been over 100 degrees (Fahrenheit) the last week. So here is my update for the second quarter of the year; these are the books I finished in April, May, and June.

TOTAL: 7

I struggled with my reading this quarter. I have stack of books about 15 deep that I started and just couldn’t get into to finish. I am going to blame this funk of trying to recover from surgery and the stress of changes at work. I’m hoping to double my number in the next quarter.

Mystery: 4

 

Nonfiction: 3

Reread: 1

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The best part of this quarter is that I really enjoyed everything I read. I am happy at the number of nonfiction books I sailed through and I hope to keep that nonfiction momentum going through the rest of the year. I am also hoping to at least double the number of books I read next quarter.

Mid-Year Goals Check-in

Total Books Read

Goal: 50       Current: 16

Nonfiction Books Read

Goal: 12      Current: 5

I’m already working on my TBR for the next quarter. Let me know what books you plan to read this summer!

Lindsay

2017 Recap and 2018 Goals

2017 Recap

I entered the Goodreads Challenge with the goal of completing 40 books in 2017.

Total Read: 37 books

  • Nonfiction: 5
  • Fiction: 32

I didn’t finish as many books as I would have liked but I was happy at how close I came despite struggling with a reading slum both in the Winter AND Summer. I was also happy that I started reading more nonfiction during the latter half of the year. You may remember, my second 2017 goal was to read 5 specific nonfiction books. I only managed to read two of them (Descent Into Darkness and The Poisoner’s Handbook). 2017 was not what I would call an amazing reading year but I am still happy with the progress I made. I rediscovered my love for historic nonfiction and started 2018 excited to read!

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2018 Goals

This year I am planning on keeping my goals simple. I am signing up for the Goodreads Challenge (you should join me!) and am aiming for 50 books read this year. I could have easily surpassed this number last year if not for those pesky reading slumps! I also am setting a Nonfiction goal for myself. My goal is for at least 12 of the books I read this year to be Nonfiction. I am not going to pick a specific list to read, but instead go where my mood sends me!

Total Books: 50

Nonfiction: 12

What are your 2018 goals? What books are you excited to read this year? Do you have any books I should check out!? Let me know! And Happy Reading!

Lindsay

 

 

Can She Do It?!

I set two reading goals for myself at the beginning of 2017. The first was to read five specific nonfiction novels. The second was to complete 40 books by the end of the year. I did read 2 of my 5 nonfiction picks (I’m quite happy with this) and I am currently sitting at 30 of my planned 40 books. Only 10 books left to hit my goal…

December 1st left me contemplating all my missed reading time. I wouldn’t say it was time wasted, but I knew I could totally knock out these last 10 books! I would read instead of watching meaningless tv, I’d let some chores wait, and I’d spend less time talking on the phone on my drive home. I would dedicate that extra time to reading, and listening, to books.

Will I actually be able to read 10 books in 27 days? Probably not, but I see nothing to lose by trying!

What is the most you’ve read in a month? What do you plan to read to get you through the holidays? Do you have any Christmas reads I should check out? Good luck with hitting your goals!

Lindsay

Florida Reading

Spring is here and soon it will be warm enough for reading days at the beach! Until then I am sharing pictures that show the joy of reading in Florida.

It’s finally warm enough to go to the beach. I will be hitting my favorite reading spot soon!


I hope you all get plenty of beach time in the coming months. I plan to have plenty of sand between the pages!

Lindsay

Florida Reading

Spring  is here and soon it will be warm enough for reading days at the beach! Until then I am sharing pictures that show the joy of reading in Florida.

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Spring always means lazy afternoons outside reading and soaking up some sun. It’s a plus when my favorite reading buddy joins me!

Happy Reading!

Lindsay

Challenge Updates

The ReRead Challenge

re-read challenge

Goal: 12 books

Read so Far: 4

January: Milo Talon

February: Cinder, Scarlet, Cress

The Movie Challenge

Goal: 12 movies

Seen so Far: 2

January: The Revenant, Star Wars Force Awenking

(I’m going to go see Deadpool soon!)

TBR Pile Reading Challenge

TBR Pile Reading challenge

 Goal: 12 books

Read so Far: none. I decided to join this challenge because I always have a hard time working on that ever growing TBR list. My shelves are overflowing with unread books and yet I keep buying more and more! This challenge will help me work on that pile.

Published 2014-2016 Challenge

Goal: 12 books

Read so Far: none. This is a personal challenge I set for myself. I tend to listen to a lot of audiobooks I find at our local library. They make my commute enjoyable BUT many are published in the early 2000s. This challenge will help me keep up with the times.

What are your challenges this year? What are you reading? Seen any good movies lately?

Lindsay

One Month Down!

I didn’t think I was ready for the first month of 2016 to be over, but am perfectly fine with the fact after a few days of reflection.This year is going much better than the last! I may not be reading a ton but I am reading more. I’m slowly accomplishing my writing goals (please read about them here) and I’m doing my best to enjoy my hobbies!

I decided to set a few simple reading and cultural goals for myself to keep this forward momentum going! Here are the three I’m going with:

Actual Book Challenge:

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The Challenge: The Re-Read Challenge

Hosts: Belle of the Literati

The Goal: The reader chooses their own re-read goal.

Official hashtag: #ReRead2016

My Goal: 12 books

Why: I wrote a post about the joy of rereading and I want an official reason to revisit some of my favs.

So Far:

  1. Milo Talon

My Personal Challenges:

1. Challenge: Read more books released in 2014, 2015, and 2016.

My Goal: 12 books

Why: I tend to read older books from the library despite having an office overflowing with my TBR pile. This is to push me to work on that pile and read new releases.

2. Challenge: Watch more movies in the theater.

My Goal: 12 movies

Why: My family are big movie goers but I’ve stopped going over the last few years due to the expense and Mike and I having such different tastes! No more! I want to see more movies in the theater!

So Far:

  1. The Revenant
  2. Star Wars: The Force Awakens

So these are my personal challenges! What  reading challenges are you doing this year?

Lindsay