Category Archives: Reading Fun

Dewey’s 24 Hour Readathon October 2014

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    It’s time!!! Dewey’s 24 Hour Readathon is here and the countdown to begin is in approximately one hour. My stack is pictured above. There is still time to sign up so don’t miss out. This year we have a record breaking 900 readers from all over the world. It’s truly amazing to see how far this event has come in our book blogging community. I have been participating in this event since 2010 and helping to co-host since 2012…even if those short years this event has grown to truly unbelievable proportions. In April due to the needs of my family I was both unable to participate or co-host and it was really hard for me. All day it felt like something was missing. It was as if I was missing a family reunion. So let’s get together, read and have a fabulous next 24 hours together. Let’s make each and every page count. Make sure and join me for hours 15, 16 & 17 (10pm-1am EST) as those will be my co-hosting hours and I have some fun stuff in store. Keep in touch & have a great readathon!! Follow me @stiletostrytime  And away we go……

Readathon Log

Hours Read: 13.25

Pages Read: 615

Books Completed: 1

Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld

Currently Reading:

The Paradise by Emile Zola

Mini-Challenges Completed: 5

Hours Hosted: 3

Snacks Consumed: Too Guilty to List Them At This Point

Opening Meme

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today?

Saint Augustine Beach , FL

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2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to?

Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld. And today is feeling like a Zola day so I may throw some Emile Zola in.

3) Which snack are you most looking forward to?

Trader Joe’s Cowgirl Bark

4) Tell us a little something about yourself!

I love fresh flowers, tea and my sweet son more than life itself.

5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today?

Pace myself and not over-do my eyes before I host tonight. In the past I have tried strained my eyes.

Mid-Event Survey
1. What are you reading right now?

Can you believe I am still on my first book? I cannot put down Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld.
2. How many books have you read so far?

Almost 1!
3. What book are you most looking forward to for the second half of the Read-a-thon?

I have not decided yet but it is between a horror title and a classic re-read.
4. Have you had many interruptions? How did you deal with those?

Quite a few but I have still managed to stay pretty focused…you know for a Mommy!
5. What surprises you most about the Read-a-thon, so far?

I am shocked I am staying with one book. This has never happened in 4 years of readathons.

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Dewey’s 24 Hour Readathon October 2013

It’s that time again….you’ve probably guessed since the buzz on Twitter and around the book blog world is palpable. It’s been building for some time now.  It’s even the thing that gets me out of literary hiatus: it’s Dewey’s 24 Hour Readathon time. Can it be…this is my 8th readathon?  My how each readathon has seen so many changes in my own life. That would be four years now for me. My how time flies when you are having fun. And this year I have the honor of hosting again…it’s been a into multiple years for that now too and it’s something I so look forward to. So come stop by hours 5-7 and say hello! And of course let me know what you are reading. That’s one of my favorite parts of Readathon! The librarian in me loves to snoop into others reading piles. But I love to share books as well….

So what am I reading?

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Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Finding Colin Firth by Mia March

The Unidentified Readhead by Alice Clayton (ARC)

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum

Doctor Sleep by Stephen King

Burial Rites by Hannah Kent

So what do you think? I will have to admit to hoarding some great books and not reading them until Readathon. Can you tell? It’s time now to start reading…so whether you are a readathon veteran or this is your very first year…remember to enjoy every second. I know I will.

Readathon Stat Tracker

Pages Read: 775

Hours Read: 16.5

Hours Hosting Readathon: 3

Mini-Challenges Completed: 14

Books Completed: 3

Opening Introduction

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today? Atlanta, Georgia
2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to? Doctor Sleep by Stephen King…saving it for dark.
3) Which snack are you most looking forward to? I am ordering Thai for dinner so I am looking forward to spring rolls. Enjoying Green Tea all day too.
4) Tell us a little something about yourself! I am a former librarian turned Mommy to the sweetest child on Earth. I read as I breath..it is needed for life.
5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? Try to get in more solid reading. With hosting, mini-challenges, twitter conversations…it can get distracting from the actual reading. But those other things are also what makes readathon truly special and such a wonderful event.

Mad Libs Mini-Challenge

“There was a penguin in her room. Cath looked up at the pumpkin painted on the car, then down at the running shoe assignment in her hand. Pound Hall, 913. This was definitely tree 913, but maybe it’s wasn’t Pound Hall- all these dolphins looked alike, like public housing towers for the dumb. Maybe Cath should try to scratch her Dad before he brought up the rest of her kittens.”   ~Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Check out My Books on Books Challenge Picture

My Readathon Meme for Mini-Challenge: Readathon Ode to Hey Girl

Show It Off Mini-Challenge Entry

image(1)I didn’t expect to have a mini-challenge that would make me cry during this readathon but all that changed when you asked me to share the book that means the most in my personal library. You see the book above is not just a book and most will probably say that about their treasure tome too. However I doubt many will say a book and it’s authors helped save their child’s life. But this book did. It represents my fight and every moment of the last two years of my life: the hardest two years I will ever live God willing. My very first Dewey’s Readathon saw me the happiest I ever was. I had a beautiful baby boy and I was in my element spending my days reveling in Mommyhood and books. And then I lost my child….he literally disappeared in front of my eyes to this thing that has been labeled “autism”. My son’s autism wasn’t this sparkly “special” thing..it was not quirkiness….it was what felt like the death of a dream. My child was sick. He was gone and in the blink of an eye. He quit speaking completely around his second birthday. He would no longer look at me. He would no longer answer to his name or even acknowledge another person’s presence most of the time. I grieved for two seconds then I got mad. I turned into the librarian I was with a mission like no other, the mission of a mother trying to desperately save their child. I turned to what I knew best…books and the pursuit of knowledge.

I discovered a group of parents that have since become my mentors, my closest friends and my heroes-my family.  A group of 23 mothers and one father that refused to accept what had happened to their children was who they were all along, was in any way acceptable, was irreversible, was inherently genetic….was anything less than an epidemic deserving of an evolution. Two years of fighting day and night. Spending nearly a hundred grand on therapies and treatments NOT covered by insurance and praying to God every night as I looked into his beautiful face- And now I can share my son is coming back to me. He’s speaking again, he’s singing, he’s looking into my eyes, he’s playing with other children, he’s interested in books again…the list goes on and on and on. My son is coming back to me. And in large part I am getting to know my son for the first time in so many ways because of the parents behind this book.

That is why when I thought about what book to donate for a prize for readathon I chose this one. Because if I could put one book into the hands of anyone with a loved one affected by autism…it would be this one. With a child diagnosed with autism every 20 seconds….that’s a lot of hands. 1 in 88 children today and the information for those stats were collected 4 years ago! Because it could literally give a child their voice back, allow them a future and make possible a parent’s dream of life with the child that God gave them. There is no book that could or ever will match what this book has done in our family’s lives because nothing could ever be more important to me than my son. Autism may have been a stop on our journey but it will not be our final destination.

Readathon End Questionnaire

Which hour was most daunting for you? 23…There was absolutely some vigorous nodding going on at 7 am as the sun was getting bright.
Could you list a few high-interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year? Fangirl was really great just like Eleanor & Park.
Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year? Keep up the great work!
What do you think worked really well in this year’s Read-a-thon? Everyone really rocked it this year in all categories. Great job to all.
How many books did you read? 3
What were the names of the books you read?

The Wizard of Of by Frank L. Baum

The Woman Upstairs by Claire Messud (Started Pre-Readathon)

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Which book did you enjoy most? Fangirl by far.
Which did you enjoy least? The Woman Upstairs I enjoyed but it was a tough one for me.
How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time? Of course I will. See everyone in April and hopefully I will have the honor of co-hosting again next year.

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Dewey’s 24 Hour Readathon: April 2013

Today I must admit I am not feeling so hot at all. If it were any other Saturday I would probably crawl up in bed with a book and alternate with reading and naps….but it’s not a day that I will allow anything to keep me down so I will do a variation on the nap/reading plan. In case you haven’t heard… It’s Dewey Day!  Dewey’s 24 Hour Read-a-thon is under way. It’s kind of like Christmas for book bloggers and readers alike. Except we’re lucky because it comes twice a year in both April and October. Yep, It’s that time of year again readers…if you have followed Stiletto Storytime over the years at all you know this is one of my favorite events. This is my seventh Dewey’s 24 Hour Read-a-thon. I have worn many hats for this event over the years. I have been a reader, a cheerleader and a co-host long into the night…and this year I am honored to be co-hosting again. So if you’re reading this year…you’ll see me Hour 13-16. Make sure to say Hi! Below is my stack…something old, something new…but I always seem to wander to my shelves and library pile during this event so no doubt there will be some changes. So buckle up…and let’s get this show on the road. If you are stopping by please say hello and share what you’re reading!

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Introduction Questions

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today? Atlanta, Georgia 2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to? All of them to be honest…but really I am still waiting for the perfect one to grab me! 3) Which snack are you most looking forward to? Almond M & M’s 4) Tell us a little something about yourself! I’m a Mommy to the cutest four year old you’ll ever meet. 5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? Since I have the honor of co-hosting this year I am kind of taking it easy and just doing some relaxing reading until my hours come up. Then I will focus on making hours 13-16 fun for all and then dive back into the books!

My Read-a-thon Results

Total # of Books Read:  2.75

# of Pages Read:  981

#of Hours Read: 12.5

# of Hours Co-Hosted: 4

# of Mini-Challenges Completed: 12

I began this Read-a-thon by finishing up a book for the Spring Into Horror Read-a-thon which is running simultaneously. I have just finished Little Star by Swedish author John Ajvide Lindqvist. Recently just finished Mila 2.0 by Debra Driza. Two down…on to the next. I’d say it’s time for the comfort that comes with re-reading a classic and personal favorite. I don’t have the copy of Rebecca that is featured below but Oh…how I wish I did.

Currently Reading

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Pride & Predjudice 200th Anniversary Party Hop

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Happy Happy Anniversary Pride & Prejudice. Can you believe it’s been 200 years? It’s amazing when you think about it that something written so long ago still has such a hold on so many individuals, still inspires such passion in our hearts and minds. I cannot tell you how excited I am to celebrate this milestone and to be able to co-host this fabulous event with author Alyssa Goodnight. Thank you to each and every one of you who are joining us and helping make the Pride and Prejudice 200th Anniversary Party Hop possible.

My love of Jane Austen is something very dear to my heart. This love is something that happened so early on in my life -it has become such an engrained part of who I am as a person and my personality that it’s hard to really remember myself before. Digging further, Pride and Prejudice is an especially personal work for me. I came to love it at the age of 13 when I first read the book…soon after I laid my eyes upon Colin Firth and my Mr. Darcy found a forever face in my mind. It’s also a very very special book for me because of it’s connection to my great great grandmother.

My Granny was a reader. As a child I often spent time with her since she lived only two houses down. She watched me while my mother worked and summers were spent in her care as well. My grandmother was a life-long reader. She owned multiple bookshelves and perusing them became a favorite past time of mine from a very young age. I loved staying up nights reading with her and making my way through her personal bookshelves knowing each book had been read and selected by her. Unfortunately around the age of ten, I was no longer able to spend time with my Granny. She began to suffer from dementia and quickly lost the ability to live on her own, take care of herself and even recognize me. To her the adult Courtney was unconceivable, she pictured me as a little girl and so I stayed away as not to upset her. Needless to say I was devastated. Although she did not pass away until my early twenties…our relationship ended too early and a large hole was put into my heart much before she left this earth. While my grandmother never shared Pride and Prejudice with me personally (I suspect she would have had I reached the age), she did encourage a love of reading that defines me and the path I have chosen in life. When she died I was desperate to revisit our special times and luckily her entire book collection became my very own. By this time I was a devoted Janeite…imagine my joy when I discovered tucked amongst her books her very own copy of Pride and Prejudice.

My Grandmother had a unique habit when she read a book. She would write her name and the year she read it within the cover. However she did not do it to every book she owned. I suspect she started in later in life so her earlier books remained blank.  When I saw that copy of Pride and Prejudice I literally burst into tears but then immediately prayed that it contained her handwritten name as well. As I opened the cover I could not contain myself, inside was her name in the handwriting I will never forget to the day I die. To this day that book is one of most prized and valued objects. It is not only one of my favorite books by my favorite author…it is a link to my Granny. A symbol that she and I are forever linked and so very similar. Though she left me too early, I know she would be so proud of who I have become. For that reason Pride and Prejudice goes so far beyond being just any book. And that one volume means the sun, moon and stars when I hold it in my hands.

Jane Austen Journal Giveaway

Join the Pride & Prejudice 200th Anniversary Party HopPlease remember to join in and travel to all our wonderful participants in this hop…some may even have goodies up for grabs. Speaking of goodies, I wanted to give away something Austen themed for this very special occasion. So the lovely Jane Austen journal below will be finding a home with one of you dear readers. I own one myself and love to jot down quotes that jump out for me and even after over 15 years of Austen, I still come across lines that make me think, laugh and smile. So want to add this journal to your collection of Jane Austen items? It’s very easy to be entered…just share a Pride and Prejudice moment or memory with all of us as we share and celebrate on this very special 200th anniversary. Happy Anniversary Pride and Prejudice…here’s to 200 more years and once again “Bravo” dear Jane.

Giveaway ends midnight EST on January 29, 2013. Open internationally. Winner will be notified via e-mail address.

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Merry Christmas from Stiletto Storytime

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Merry Christmas from Stiletto Storytime!

Another year has passed here at Stiletto Storytime and I find myself thankful for another year of books, blogging and of course fabulous readers like yourself. I wish you and yours the merriest of Christmas’ and/or any other holiday that you may celebrate. Enjoy being with family and friends, great food and if you are so inclined a bit of a good book on the side. Later today I will be cuddling up with a good book under a nice cozy blanket while sipping some white hot chocolate and I hope wherever you are in the world you may join me in this tradition. If you so please share with us all here at Stiletto Storytime…what book will you be cuddling up with?

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Christmas Books Giveaway Hop with Author Heather Vogel Frederick

christmas books hopIt’s that time of year again folks! I’m not going to lie…I love Christmas. I always have and having a three year old now who is literally obsessed with Christmas has only made it more special. One of my favorite things about Christmas has also always been that extra reading time and if I am lucky bookstore gift cards coming my way or even that one special book under the tree on Christmas morning. So to celebrate I am participating in the Christmas Book Giveaway Hop hosted by I Am a Reader, Not a Writer & Laurie Here. This great giveaway hop has over 120 blogs participating and giving away one or more Christmas themed tomes. Make sure to check out the participating blog list here.

This holiday season I decided to team up with the always lovely, talented and extremely generous Heather Vogel Frederick so we could provide some very lucky reader with copies of her fifth installment in the fabulous Mother- Daughter Book Club series:  Home for the Holidays. It’s the perfect read for Mom or Daughter…or even better Mom and Daughter together. It would also make a fantastic Christmas present and I know Heather would be more than happy to sign it to that special someone if you’d like. She’s just that kind of person. A true gem of an author indeed. I have honestly enjoyed every book in this series and each can be read alone or in order so don’t worry if you’re not all caught up!

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To enter to win just comment below and let us know your favorite book to read during this time of year…it doesn’t have to be Holiday related whatsoever. For instance I often re-read my favorite classics this time of year simply because I have the time. This year I am re-reading Les Miserables by Victor Hugo in preparation for the release of the movie musical. So…as you sip hot cocoa, sit by the fire and maybe just maybe…watch it snow ( who am I kidding…I live in Georgia)…what book will you have in hand?

Three lucky winners will be chosen here at Stiletto Storytime to win their own copy of Home for the Holidays by Heather Vogel Frederick. This Giveaway Hop will end on December 9, 2012 at midnight EST. This giveaway is open to US/CAN addresses only. Winners will be chosen by random number generator and notified by e-mail.

Want extra entries? You can get an extra entry by doing any of the following:

Be/Become a Follower of Stiletto Storytime

Be/Become a Follower Stiletto Storytime on Twitter

Check out Heather Vogel Frederick’s Website & Share Something You Learned/Found Interesting

Tweet or Blog about this Giveaway at Stiletto Storytime (Please leave link in comments)

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Filed under Book Blogs, Contests, Girly Books, Heather Vogel Frederick, Middle Grade, New Books, Reading Fun, Young Adult Books

Book Bloggers Holiday Card Exchange 2012

Book Bloggers Holiday Card Exchange

Last year I participated in one of my favorite Book Blogger events to date…The Book Bloggers Holiday Card Exchange. It was such a fun event…I loved getting cards from other book bloggers all over the world and sending out specialized cards for a few bloggers out there. It was so much fun that come early November of this year…I was looking forward to the event again. Imagine my disappointment in seeing that it was not set to take place this year! Well…I simply didn’t want to let this event go. It’s just too great to let pass so since it’s a worldwide event…I asked my favorite international blogger to help me save The Book Bloggers Holiday Card Exchange. And…

This year, the Book Bloggers Holiday Card Exchange is organised by Judith at Leeswammes’ Blog and by myself here at Stiletto Storytime. Anastasia of Birdbrain(ed) Book Blog has passed the baton on to us. Anastasia is the originator and ran this very popular event for two years. As we’re a little late announcing this event we’re more or less taking Anastasia’s text from last year, with her permission (thank you so much, Anastasia!).

The Book Bloggers Holiday Card Exchange is an event in which book bloggers send each other a holiday card around the Christmas period (the end of December). This isn’t just for people that celebrate Christmas, though! Everyone is can join in the fun.

Info

1. Sign up for the exchange by November 30, 2012.

2. Emails with partner info go out December 3, 2012 (please check your spam folder if you didn’t get the email, then contact us).

3. You have until December 13, 2012 to send your card(s).

4. Since it’s a book-lovers card exchange you have to include something book-related in your card. Some ideas:

  • Write about a book you’ve read recently.
  • Give a few book recommendations to your partner.
  • Tell a book-related story.
  • Something else book-related that you think up yourself.

5. Since this is a book blogger holiday card exchange, you need to be a blogger who blogs at least sometimes about books to participate.

6. The swap is open internationally. It’s too cumbersome trying to pair up people who do/do not want to send internationally, so everyone must be willing to send internationally.

7. You can exchange up to five cards. You won’t always get a card from the same people you send your cards to. It will nevertheless be an awesome thing.

Some Things to Remember

1. You HAVE to send a card. A card is something like this. You can make it yourself or buy it at the store. Everything you write must be contained in the card itself. Letters are not cards. The card doesn’t have to be book-themed OR holiday themed (but it might be nice if it was). We suggest you refrain from sending specifically religious-themed cards, because that sort of thing tends to offend people, even if you didn’t mean to offend them.

2. You HAVE to write something book-related in your card (see above). You can’t just say “happy holidays.” You COULD just write a list of books and that’s all, but I don’t think that’d be a lot of fun, do you?

3. You DON’T have to send anything else but the card, but if you want to stick in something else that’d be fine. A bookmark, for instance, would be really nice. Whatever you send: it has to be flat enough to fit in the envelope– no upgrading into package territory, here.

4. The most you should spend is $5. The point of the exchange is that it’s cheap enough for us money-less people to participate in, so everything should cost $5 and under. I don’t know if you can even buy a card that costs more than $5. Can you?

Quickie Privacy Policy

Courtney and Judith are the only ones who will see ALL the information. You partner(s) will be the only ones besides us who will see your address/email/etc. After the exchange is over all the info will be deleted.

Questions/Comments

If you have any questions, please feel free to comment here or email us about them!  leeswammes @ gmail dot com 

Also, please do spread around the link for this post! Feel free to take the graphic at the top of the post and post it on your blog, etc. The more people know about the BBHCE the more fun it’ll be!

So doesn’t it sound great? Trust me…this is a fabulous event and it only takes a little bit of thought and work to really enjoy something special this Holiday season from your fellow book bloggers. It’s such fun when you start to receive the cards in the mail! So please sign up here at Leeswammes’ Blog (scroll to the bottom for the entry form).

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