Category Archives: Reading Challenge

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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The Offical 2012 Book Challenge Wrap Up

Wow…I’m quite late on the official 2012 wrap up post for my book challenge results here at Stiletto Storytime. It feels like I have been constantly playing catch up in my life and especially in the blogging/reading/reviewing sector for the last year or so. A main course of kicking autism’s butt daily and focusing on returning your child to a full and  healthy existence with a side of stress induced auto-immune disorders for yourself will do that for you. It will knock you down but I have not let it knock me out. At times I have wished I could simply put out the above sticky and be done with it.There were even times in the last year when I will admit I have considered ending Stiletto Storytime which has been a labor of love over the last six years of my life. In the end luckily I decided I simply couldn’t do it. Reading has always been my most cherished escape and at this time in my life I truly need that escape more than ever. So here’s to looking forward to a fantastic year of books and blogging in 2013 but before we march on into a new year, let’s check out what I did achieve in 2012…..

Level I – Read 5 books from the 2011 Book Blogger Recommendation List

1.) Delirium by Lauren Oliver

2.) Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James

3.) Paper Towns John Green

4.) An Abundance of Katherines by John Green

5.) Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

Read any 10 books by a Debut YA or Middle Grade Author

1.) Incarnate by Jodi Meadows

2.) A Breath of Eyre by Eve Marie Mont

3.) The Selection by Kiera Cass

4.) Wentworth Hall by Abby Grahame

5.) Partials by Dan Wells

6.) Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

7.) Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

8.) Cinder by Marissa Meyer

9.) Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry

10.) The Murmurings by Carly Anne West

The Fun size YA Reading Challenge – Read 20 Young Adult novels

1.) Incarnate by Jodi Meadows

2.) Crossed by Ally Condie

3.) Promise the Night by Michaela MacColl

4.) A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle (Re-Read)

5.) Girl Meets Boy Edited by Kelly Milner Halls

6.) Faery Tales and Nightmares by Melissa Marr

7.)  Freshman Year & Other Unnatural Disasters by Meredith Zeitlin

8.) A Breath of Eyre by Eve Marie Mont

9.) The Selection by Kiera Cass

10.) The Future of Us by Jay Asher & Carolyn Mackler

11.)  2108: Eyes Open by K.L. Glanville

12.) Wentworth Hall by Abby Grahame

13.) Fallen by Lauren Kate (Re-Read)

14.) Torment by Lauren Kate (Re-Read)

15.) The Haunted by Jessica Verday (Audiobook)

16.) Cinder by Marissa Meyer

17.) Partials by Dan Wells

18.) Mothership by Martin Leicht & Isla Neal

19.) Delirium by Lauren Oliver

20.) Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver

21.)  Stork by Wendy Delsol (Re-Read)

22.) Frost by Wendy Delsol (Re-Read)

23.) Flock by Wendy Delsol

24.) Flowers in the Attic by V.C. Andrews

25.) Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

26.) The Fault In Our Stars by John Green

27.) Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

28.) Paper Towns John Green

29.) The Murmurings by Carly Anne West

30.) An Abundance of Katherines by John Green

31.) Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

Read Books of Historical Fiction at Level: Struggling the Addiction: 10 books

1.) Death Comes to Pemberley by P.D. James

2.)  By a Lady by Amanda Elyot

3.) Enchantments by Kathryn Harrison

4.) The Garden Intrigue by Lauren Willig

5.) Wentworth Hall by Abby Grahame

6.) The Taker by Alma Katsu

7.) The Uninvited Guests by Sadie Jones

8.) Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel

9.) I Am Forbidden by Anouk Markovits

10.) The House of Velvet and Glass by Katherine Howe

11.) The Shoemaker’s Wife by Adriana Trigiani

12.) Flowers in the Attic by V.C. Andrews

13.) Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

Read 3 books about South Asia or written by a South Asian writer in 2012 

1.) The World We Found by Thrity Umrigar

2.) Narcopolis by Jeet Thayil

3.) And Laughter Fell from the Sky by Jyotsna Sreenivasan

4.) The Color of Tea by Hannah Tunnicliffe

So how did I do? While I did complete all my reading challenges, I must admit to dropping down a few levels in some when allowed. I read a total of 81 books last year which I must admit is not much for me personally. I read 143 books in 2011 and 186 in 2010. Taking those numbers into account I had set a goal of 150 for 2012 but what can I say…life happens. So for this next year I am going to set the goal of 100 books. I have every reason to believe that this coming year will be one of healing and focus for myself and our family. That being said I will never forget those individuals and organizations that have stood by me and been such a pleasure to work with in the book blogging and publishing community. I truly learned over the last year who cared beyond books. I will never forget how those people have lifted me up and made me believe in myself when the world around me made me question everything. In closing if I missed a deadline, if I did not respond to your book pitch, if I did not get a certain review out…I apologize from the bottom of my heart. It has been the hardest year of my entire life but I survived and that gives me great pride and hope for 2013.

So how many books did you read in 2012? What was your goal? Are there any reading challenges that I simply cannot miss for 2013? I am making my list now and would love to hear of any great challenges out there. So let’s share and get the reading started…

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Dewey’s 24 Hour Read-a-thon: October 2012

  

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 that takes place every year in April and October. This is my sixth Dewey’s 24 Hour Read-a-thon. I have worn many hats for this event. I have been a reader, a cheerleader and a co-host long into the night in April. Every experience has been special and this year I am looking forward to being simply a reader again and really focusing on the reading. So what am I reading?

                 

This year I am kind of pushing the boundaries by choosing two very long books and one shorter YA. Often it’s best to choose multiple shorter titles to keep the momentum going but this year I simply had to re-read Justin Cronin’s The Passage so I could dive into The TwelveI also chose Beta  by Rachel Cohn as my go to break book if needed since the first two books are 500-700 pages respectfully. But I am so excited to dig in and hopefully even get some reviewing and blogging done as well.

So won’t you join me? There’s still time sign up and get involved. Join hundreds of readers from all over the world dedicated to reading together for an entire 24 hours. You can sign up here. Enjoy hourly updates, mini-challenges, giveaways and so much more. So come on be a part of literary greatness…join us. I will regularly update my progress on this same post so check back and see how things are going and share your experience. Happy Reading to All!

Read-a-thon Progress 

Current Book: The Passage by Justin Cronin

Books Completed: 0

Pages Read:601

Hours Reading: 8.5

Mini-Challenges Completed: 11

Introductory Questionnaire

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today? Atlanta, Georgia in the USA
2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to? The Twelve by Justin Cronin
3) Which snack are you most looking forward to?  My sea salt bagel chips & chocolate covered almonds. Yum!
4) Tell us a little something about yourself! I am the mother of an amazingly loving and intelligent three year son who just happens to have autism…we are fighting every day and winning!
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? I have participated in six of these read-a-thons as a reader, cheerleader and co-host…excited this year to lay back and enjoy the ride while focusing on the reading!

Book Puzzle Mini-Challenge from One Librarian’s Book Reviews

                     

Can you guess the book title from the images above?

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My Week in Reading

Wow! What a week/month in reading this is turning out to be! It’s the week before we head out to the beach for vacation. This year we rented a house on Tybee Island for a week so I can’t wait to make my vacation reading list (you know those books I have been wanting to read forever but reviewing commitments or life just kept getting in the way). Can’t wait to pack my books and head out for some relaxation in the sun and water. We’ll be on the beach and have a pool so I can’t wait for my beach reading in the sand and my floating in the pool reading as well. Vacation reading is right up there with my very favorite types of reading. Probably a nice tie between vacation reading and holiday reading if I had to choose. What’s your favorite kind of reading? I will make sure to share my vacation books in a post closer to our departure. In the meantime….

This week/month I am also participating in two great reading events. First off the Summer Wrap -Up Read-a-thon hosted by Jennifer at Some Like It Paranormal and Jude at In Between which takes place from August 4th-12th which means it will even last a day into vacation. Right now I am working on finishing up Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver for this reading event. This event also has tons of mini-challenges and giveaways on offer and a Twitter following at #SWUR. Feel free to join….even though the event has begun you can still sign up here and try to finish up some of that TBR pile. I will be keeping track of my progress here on this post along with my participation in challenges.

Summer Wrap-Up Read-a-thon Progress

Books Completed: Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver

Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L James

Pages Completed: 889

Mini-Challenges Completed: 4

The other great reading event going on right now is a month long reading challenge that is dear to my pure Janeite heart. It’s Austen in August: A Reading Event which you can learn more about and sign up for here. It’s being hosted by Adam at Roof Beam Reader. I can’t tell you how excited I am for this one since I love any excuse to sit back and re-read Jane Austen. I am going to start this event out by reading my new Penguin Classics fabric covered copy of Persuasion that I won awhile back from Austenprose. It’s such a lovely book…I simply can’t wait. You can follow this event on Twitter with #AustenInAugustRBR . I will be keeping track of my progress in this event on this post as well.

Austen in August Progress

Currently Reading: Persuasion by Jane Austen

Books Completed: 0

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Once Upon a Time Read-a-thon Mini-Challenge & Giveaway

It’s time again for another Read-a-thon Mini-Challenge and this one is simple. Sorry it’s a little late getting posted but technology fought me all the way on making this feature a reality. I know we’ve all been there once or twice. But I do apologize. So on to the Mini-Challenge…It’s all about sharing your favorite authors and reads. Only with a twist.

Lately I have been thinking about how many foreign authors I have discovered recently and have come to absolutely love. One of my favorite authors is Thrity Umrigar– an author and journalist of Indian descent. I wait for her books like so many did for the next installment of Harry Potter or The Twilight Saga. I cherish each one. Some other favorites of mine are British author Jill Mansell and Australian author Lucinda Brant. If you’ve never read Lucinda Brant’s work, you’re truly missing out. She writes some of the best historical fiction I have ever read and I am so thankful to have discovered her work by winning a copy of one of her books through a giveaway at another book blog. So now with the help of the always generous Lucinda I hope to return the favor to another lucky reader.

The Mini-Challenge

Below in the comments simply share a foreign author whose work you adore. I personally am from the United States but we may have readers from all over so just make sure the author you share is from a country other than your own. Tell us why you like them. Are there any books by them in particular that you would recommend? How did you come across their work? The whole point is to share and allow us all to discover a new author that we might otherwise never have been exposed to..to literally open up a whole new world of books for one another.

The Prize

One lucky commenter will be chosen by random number generator to win a personalized signed copy of Australian author Lucinda Brant’s Midnight Marriage. The giveaway is open INTL and the contest will close July 11th at 11:59pm along with the Read-a-thon. You don’t have to be a part of the Read-a-thon to enter but there is a definite bonus if you are. Good Luck to All and Happy Reading!

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

Are you a reader in the Once Upon A Time Read-a-thon (+5)

Be/Become a Follower of Stiletto Storytime (+3)

Be/Become a Follower of Stiletto Storytime on Twitter (+1)

Be/Become a Follower of Author Lucinda Brant on Twitter (+1)

“Like” Author Lucinda Brant on Facebook (+1)

Tweet or Blog about this Giveaway (Please leave link in comments) (+1)

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