Meet The Co-Hosts Of Tome Topple: Sam from Thoughts On Tomes!

Hello Readers!

It’s hard to believe that today is the last round of Tome Topple! I’ll be hosting some reading sprints this evening (they probably just kicked off actually). I’ve had an insanely busy week but I’m almost done with King of Scars and BOY WAS THIS GOOD!! I’ll definitely be reading Rule Of Wolves over the summer to see how this all wraps up. Since we’re wrapping up Tome Topple, I thought it was only appropriate for my last interview to be with Sam from Thoughts On Tomes (the creator of Tome Topple)!

Mr Geek: Hey Sam! Thanks so much for sitting down to chat with me – let’s start off with the basics. Introduce yourself to my readers. What do you like to do other than reading? Have any fun hobbies? What do you do as your day job?

Sam: Hello! I’ve collected so many hobbies over the years in addition to reading. I love taking care of and collecting  houseplants, witchy things like tarot, astrology, collecting insects, etc, video games… I also stream on twitch, board games, powerlifting, and hiking. I’m also about to take up roller skating! My day job is a psychotherapist.

Mr Geek: Wow, love how eclectic your hobbies are! I’m also a big video game person but don’t stream on Twitch, maybe I should look into that! Speaking of streaming, let’s talk YouTube for a minute. You’re Thoughts On Tomes on all of your social media accounts.  What inspired this name?  Have you always been a fan of big books?  Also, while we’re on the topic of tomes, we’re prepping for Round 16 of Tome Topple.  What inspired this read-a-thon and why did you originally create it?

Sam: When I first wanted to make a Booktube channel years ago, I really struggled with wanting to find the perfect name. There were so many channels with books in the title that I wanted to do something a bit different. I never really paid attention to book length when I was younger but I will admit that bigger books did intimidate me when I got back into reading. That’s what inspired Tome Topple. I wanted some motivation to read bigger books but so many read-a-thons were geared around reading as many books as possible so it tended to be about smaller books. I wanted to have a longer readathon and encourage reading those bigger titles we get intimidated by without the FOMO of seeing others reading way more because they are reading smaller books.

Mr Geek: I love that. I definitely still get intimidated by longer books, mostly because when I was younger, I would alway try to tackle longer books and it wasn’t a great experience. Not sure if I read meh books back then or what but I always lost interest and they tended to drag. I’m also really bad about binge reading series in a row but that’s a topic for another day! Tome Topple has definitely been a great way for me to start reading longer books and has definitely taken away some of the intimidation. I actually read Queen of Air and Darkness a couple rounds ago – that sucker was over 900 pages and I managed to finish it during the Tome Topple round! The Dark Artifices series was one of my favorites, I absolutely loved it. What’s your favorite genre of books?

Sam: Definitely Fantasy. It’s my favorite genre, I’m never bored, and most of my favorite books are in it. 

Mr Geek: I’m also a HUGE Fantasy fan. Definitely one of my favorite genres, right up there with Thrillers and YA. I love being swept away into a fictional world. Especially after the last couple of years, it’s nice to escape for awhile! What were some of your favorite books from last year? Read any good Fantasy?

Sam: Ohh 2021 was a rough reading year for me. I read a lot of blah books that I didn’t feel strongly either way about because my brain couldn’t handle much else. Favorite was probably Legendborn by Tracy Deonn. Really looking forward to that sequel. Least favorite… Lore by Alexandra Bracken or possibly Dune.

Mr Geek: Ugh, I feel you on that one. I did NOT have a great reading year in 2021 either. I read many not great books too. I did read Legendborn and loved it – definitely excited for the sequel as well! It was such an interesting blend of Aurthurian and magic, very unique! I have both Lore and Dune on my TBR, so that doesn’t bode well for them. We’ll have to chat again after I finish them to compare notes. I have heard Dune is a “you’ll love it or you’ll hate it” kind of book. I guess only time will tell for me! Our time is winding down so one final question for you. Do you have any unique ways that you celebrate your love of books?

Sam: I’m currently working on a tattoo sleeve that represents elements of all of my favorite books. It’s a piece I hope to continue adding to for the rest of my life. So far I already have a tattoo inspired by the Night Circus and I’ll be adding the Starless Sea and Uprooted this month. I also have plans for designs for the Witchlands series and trying to think of some ideas for representing some other favorite series like The Daevabad trilogy.

Mr Geek: I don’t have any tattoos, not a fan of needles, but this is such a great idea! I’ve seen a couple of the finished tattoos on your Instagram and they are turning out great so far! Such a cool idea and it’s awesome that you’re planning to continue adding to this for the rest of your life. Thanks for stopping by and chatting, Sam!

That concludes both my Co-Host interview series and we’re going to be winding down Tome Topple here in the next few hours! Now’s the time to finish those books before the clock strikes midnight!

Until We Meet Again,
Mr Geek

Meet The Co-Hosts Of Tome Topple: Sam From Will Read For Booze!

Hello Readers!

Tome Topple officially started yesterday and we’re off to a solid start! My first read is going to be King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo (and I’m already about 100 page into it)! For this round, I thought it would be fun to do blog posts featuring each of the co-hosts that make this event happen! Over the next 2 weeks, whenever I host reading sprints, I’ll be sharing a blog post highlighting one of my fellow co-hosts! So without further ado, let’s chat with Sam from Will Read For Booze!

Mr Geek: Hey Sam! Thanks for taking the time to chat with me for this blog post! Let’s kick things off withy ou introducing yourself to my readers. What are a few things you enjoy doing outside of reading? Have any fun hobbies?  What’s your day job? 

Sam (Will Read For Booze): Hey there! I’m Sam from Will Read For Booze. I live in the DC area, am in my early 30s, and work as a consultant (like most people here). I have the cutest cat ever named Nona Grey from the Red Sister series by Mark Lawrence. Other than reading, hobbies include social sports (I play kickball) and Netflix, but my Covid hobby I picked up was doing my own nails. Been loving that. 

Mr Geek: I love a good book-inspired pet name! Speaking of things I love – the name of your blog, Will Read For Booze, combines two of my favorite things into one!  What inspired the name and what got you into blogging? 

Sam (Will Read For Booze): Well… back in 2016, my friends and I attended our first BookCon in Chicago. Little did we know what we would get ourselves in to. We started talking about how we want to get in to BookNet but how to do so without being one of many… we also just so happened to be hammered at the time. So, myself, Ginny, and our other friend Parker started the blog. The name came from us basically starting a google doc and everyone writing ideas and we picked one haha. We’ve picked up a few others along the way, Linz and Minda. A couple of us are on hiatus, but that’s what happens when you’ve got.. you know.. life.

Mr Geek: That’s awesome! It’s great that you’re able to blog with friends… I’m flying solo over here at Treat Yo Shelf. Follow up question, that your favorite kind of booze?

Sam (Will Read For Booze): Fave booze? I don’t really discriminate when it comes to alcohol but wine. Always wine.

Mr Geek: Ahhhh, wine. An excellent choice and I might just go pour a glass after this interview is over! I also don’t discriminate but I am a big wine drinker too. Love a good Sauvignon Blanc! Shifting gears and back into book talk, if you could only read one genre for the rest of your life, what would you pick and why?

Sam (Will Read For Booze): Fantasy, one thousand percent. It’s my escape. You can learn and process so much about your life when you can get rid of a lot of the realities of the day to day. Especially now, the last thing I want is to think about the real world.

Mr Geek: I can completely understand that! This pandemic has not been very enjoyable to live through! I completely agree with you though, I also love fantasy. It’s great being able to escape to a separate world and forget about your day-to-day life for awhile! What were your favorite and least favorite books you read in 2021? Read any good fantasy?

Sam (Will Read For Booze): This is not a fair question but if I had to pick a favorite, The Burning God by R.F. Kuang. The finale just worked and the series was beautiful and tragic all at the same time.

My least favorite? Blood & Honey by Shelby Mahurin… listen I know these books are well loved but… not by me, and especially not this one. Nothing happened haha!

Mr Geek: There are plenty of books out there that I can’t stand but others adore. That’s what makes you, you! As we wind down, your final question. What was the most boring thing you did during the pandemic?

Sam (Will Read For Booze): The boringest thing I did in Covid, you ask? Why, I’ll tell you. I literally watched paint dry. I moved in to a new place and was painting my bookshelves and just watched it dry so I could do the next coat.

Mr Geek: Haha, I did A LOT of boring things during the pandemic but I can honestly say I’ve never watched paint dry! Sam, thank you so much for agreeing to do this interview, it was great chatting with you!

There you have it ladies and gentlemen, Sam from Will Read For Booze! Hopefully you learned a little something new about Sam. Keep an eye on my blog, Twitter (@ItsMrGeekToYou) and the Tome Topple Twitter Account (@Tome_Topple) for our next co-host interview! Hope everyone is having a great round!

Until We Meet Again,
Mr Geek

A Mis-Matched April TBR + Tome Topple!

Hello Readers!

I can’t believe we are almost halfway through April! The weather should be breaking but it has been surprisingly cold and even a little snowy here in Pittsburgh these last few weeks. In non-book related news, I just got back from a trip to Augusta, GA! I was invited to golf at Augusta Country Club last Thursday and then I attended the Masters golf tournament on Friday and Saturday. It was an incredible trip and I am still in disbelief that I was able to go! While the trip was packed with activities, I did get some serious reading done during my flights! So let’s chat about what books I plan to tackle during the month of April!

I originally had a pretty fun idea for my TBR planned but due to Tome Topple and a couple other events I’m participating in this month, I’m going to postpone this one more month and use this idea in May! Instead of having a fully baked plan, I’m sticking with the theme of this year and going a little chaotic. To start, I’m reading Finlay Donovan Is Killing it by Elle Cosimano. This is a funny, light and slightly dark story about an author, and recent divorcee, who gets mistaken as a hired assassin. I’m almost done with this one and I’m really enjoying it – it doesn’t take itself too seriously and is a nice distraction in this crazy world we’re living in. The next book I’d like to wrap up is This Golden State by Marit Weisenberg. I’ve been picking away at this one since last month and am going to be committing to finishing it soon. I was a little slumpy when I first started this one, so I’ve been dragging it out much longer than I meant to!

Once I wrap up these two books, we’re going to be into the start of Tome Topple Round 16! I always set lofty goals for Tome Topple and never follow through with them but I’m going to try to change that this time around! As you might’ve seen in my announcement post, I’m planning to read King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo. This is the first book in the Nikolai Duology that takes place after the original Grishaverse trilogy and the Six of Crows Duology. I’m planning to try to knock this one out in week 1 of Tome Topple then move into The Book of Accidents by Chuck Wendig. The Book of Accidents is a creepy horror title that sounds RIGHT up my alley. I usually save these types of books for October but I got this one for Christmas from my Secret Santa (if you ever read this – Thanks again, Gigi!!) and I’ve been dying to read it ever since! Each of these books check the box for each of the reading prompts I rolled in my announcement post. I’m also going to revisit Empire of the Vampire by Jay Kristoff. I started this one back in January and while I enjoyed it, it’s slow pacing threw me off. I’m about 90 pages into that one already, so I’m going to pick that up when I can to try to chip away at it during this round of Tome Topple.

So that’s it! What books are you reading this month and are you planning to participate in Tome Topple? Drop me your books in the comments and be sure to keep your eyes peeled for when I’m hosting reading sprints (and be sure to join in)!

Until Next Time,
Mr Geek

Tome Topple Round 16 Announcement!

Hello Readers!

It’s hard to believe that April is right around the corner and with it… THE NEXT ROUND OF TOME TOPPLE! That’s right, Tome Topple Round 16 will begin on April 15th and run until April 28th! Better start picking out those books because we have some exciting updates happening this time around!

Since it has been awhile since our last round in October, I thought I’d give everyone a quick rundown of what Tome Topple is and how you can participate! Tome Topple is a 2 week read-a-thon where the main objective is to read books that are over 500 pages… that’s it! We’ll be hosting reading sprints on Twitter and potentially Discord this time around plus there will be Instagram and TikTok challenges too! So, how can you participate? Simply read your long books (and be sure to tag me and the other co-hosts so we can chat about your book/s)!

Speaking of co-hosts, I think now’s the perfect time to introduce the wonderful group of people that make this event happen!

We’re also going to be switching up the reading prompts this time and are shifting away from the “Bingo Card.” Instead, there are 20, yes 20, reading prompts for this round! Feel free to pick your favorites, use a random number generator, ask your friends / family for numbers or you can always roll some dice. The prompts are as follows:

1. The tome with a screen adaptation (current or upcoming) 2. A sequel tome
3. Tome on your TBR with the most pages
4. Audiobook tome
5. A tome written by a BIPOC author
6. Tome from a genre you don’t usually read
7. Tome in a series you haven’t read for a while
8. Tome with a green cover
9. Tome based on a historical event
10. Tome that has won an award

11. Standalone tome
12. Tome set in a non-European inspired setting
13. Tome centering a romance
14. Tome that’s been on your TBR the longest
15. Tome featuring an animal as main character or prominent side character (real or magical)
16. Tome with your favorite cover
17. Graphic novel tome
18. Tome that was published before 2018
19. Re-read a tome
20. Tome written by someone who doesn’t identify as a man

I decided to bust out my old faithful D&D dice (which have been in retirement for about a year) and leave my book selections up to Fate!

The dice have spoken – I’ll be tackling prompts 8 (Tome with a green cover) and 10 (Tome that has won an award). As an added bonus, I might try to throw in an Audiobook Tome too (but I usually only manage to read one book during this read-a-thon so I should probably calm down. It was pretty easy selecting which books I’ll read for each prompt. For #10, which I’ll begin the read-a-thon with, I’ll be reading King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo which won the Parents’ Choice Silver Award. For #8, I’ll be reading The Book of Accidents by Chuck Wendig. Both of these books have been on my TBR for entirely too long and it’s time to finally knock them out!

Are you planning to participate in Tome Topple? What’s your TBR looking like? Leave me a comment and be sure to follow along on Twitter (@ItsMrGeekToYou) / Subscribe to my blog for all the updates!

Until We Meet Again,
Mr Geek

Tome Topple Round 15: Check In!

Hello Readers!

It’s hard to believe that we are officially over halfway done with Round 15 of Tome Topple! This last week has been full of book talk, reading sprints and lots of pages (but maybe not as many as I was hoping). A friend of mine got married this past weekend, so I was busy traveling and celebrating (with a little reading thrown in on my flights)!

I’m currently making my way through Middlegame by Seanan McGuire. I’m about 50% done with my first tome (I was hoping to be done with it by now). I’m hoping to knock this book out before Friday so I can spend a chunk of next weekend reading Empire of the Vampire by Jay Kristoff.

Don’t forget to keep track of all the books you’ve read using the convenient bingo card! Are you hoping to hit Student, Sage or Scholar status this round? Leave me a comment with your TBR and the status you’re looking to hit!

Until We Meet Again,
Mr Geek

Tome Topple Round 15 Announcement!

Helllllllllllllllo Readers!

It’s your favorite Geek here to announce the next round of Tome Topple! As the days grow shorter, our books grow longer! I don’t know about all of you, but I’m ready for some cooler temperatures, some nice warm beverages and some quality reading time! I’ve finally managed to shake off the reading slump I’ve been in pretty much all year, right in time for Tome Topple!

It has been awhile since Round 14, so let me give you a quick refresher! Read books that are over 500 pages long… that’s it! Round 15 is going to kick off on October 18th and end on October 31st. We have an awesome group of co-hosts, all returning from last time:

Also returning is our “Bingo Card” that contains all of the reading challenges for this round! This “Bingo Card” is strictly to help everyone participating keep track of which challenges they’ve completed so far! Be sure to follow along on Twitter (@ItsMrGeekToYou & @Tome_Topple) for book talk, reading sprints and motivation! We also have a Discord channel for you to connect with other readers!

Tome Topple Round 15 Bingo Card

My goal for this round is the same one I’ve had for all the previous rounds, and that’s to hit Sage status (eventually, I’ll make this a reality)! So, without further ado, let’s dive into the tomes I’m hoping to topple later this month!

Since it’s October, I’m going with a Spooky TBR all month long. I did a similar setup last year and really enjoyed the theme and thought I’d do it again this year! I’m starting off the month with A Clown In The Cornfield, Tunnel of Bones and We Have Always Lived In The Castle. For Tome Topple, I’m planning to read Empire Of The Vampire by Jay Kristoff and either Middlegame by McGuire or The Outsider by Steven King. I am leaning more towards The Outsider because I’ve been dying to watch the HBO show but committed to reading the book first! I’m open to suggestions – if anyone has strong feelings one way or another, let me know in the comments!

So that’s it! I’m really excited to join you all for some book talk and reading sprints later this month! What are you planning to read for Tome Topple? Let me know in the comments! See you all in a little over a week!

Until We Meet Again,
Mr Geek

That’s A Wrap: Tome Topple, Round 14!

It literally feels like yesterday that Sam from Thoughts On Tome sent out the Voxer message announcing that Tome Topple Round 14 was going to take place in March. Like a bookish version of the Avengers, the co-hosts assembled and we all began planning for the read-a-thon!

Tome Topple is, hands down, one of my favorite read-a-thons. I don’t know about you, but I could always use a little extra incentive / motivation to read my really long books. As I was planning my TBR for March, I purposely added Queen Of Air And Darkness by Cassandra Clare to the list. I’ve been wanting to finish The Dark Artifices series for awhile now but was putting it off because 1) I wasn’t ready for the series to end and 2) this book was a beast, coming in at over 900 pages! Usually I attempt several of the reading prompts from the bingo card, but this time I decided to keep it simple – finish Queen Of Air And Darkness and I’d consider this round a win!

Tome Topple Round 14 “Bingo” Card

Overall, this was a very successful round for me! Week 1 of Tome Topple was relatively calm – I hosted quite a few reading sprints and made some nice progress in my tome. Week 2 was another story. Between work and my personal life, I had an extremely hectic week. When Friday rolled around I had about 400 or so pages left to read and the outlook was grim. Over the weekend, I hosted a few reading sprints (and participated as a spectator in a few as well). Yesterday was an absolutely miserable day here in Pittsburgh. It rained pretty steadily the entire day and it was the perfect excuse to stay home and read. I ended up knocking out the rest of my tome in the afternoon and enjoyed every minute of it! Cassandra Clare finales are just so well done that once you hit the tipping point, there’s no turning back! I read a lot of books to get to this point but it was worth the journey. I’m planning on starting The Scrolls of Magic and The Lost Hours series very soon (right after I read Tales From The Shadow Market).

Wrapping up this post, I want to thank all my fellow co-hosts: Sam (Thoughts On Tomes), Adri (Perpetual Pages), Sam 2 (Will Read For Booze), Gaia (Lalettricesegreta on IG), Tori (Tori Morrow) and Jocelyn (Yogi With A Book). I appreciate you welcoming me into this group and have thoroughly enjoyed co-hosting with each one of you. I’d also love to thank all the participants – my favorite part about co-hosting is socializing with all of you! Each reading sprint, you all were there to chat about books, current events and life. I hope to see you all back for Round 15 later this year! Please don’t be a stranger – I talk books here on the blog and also @ItsMrGeekToYou on Twitter!

Until We Meet Again,
Mr Geek

Tome Topple Round 14 Announcement!

Well, the cat is officially out of the bag – Tome Topple Round 14 begins in a couple short weeks (March 15-28). For those of you who aren’t familiar with Tome Topple, the premise is simple: Read those chunky, 500+ page books! Tome Topple was created by Sam over at Thoughts On Tomes (her content is excellent and you should absolutely check her out, if you haven’t already)! Back in 2019, I started researching read-a-thons and Tome Topple frequently popped up. I’ve always tended to stray away from really long books (partially because I feel like I never “make progress” and partially because I feel like some books are unnecessarily long / start to get boring). I wasn’t sure if this would really enjoy it or not and decided to just watch Tome Topple from a distance. Note to past self: You’re an idiot sandwich. It was a book-related event, of course you would enjoy it!

A live look at me “watching Tome Topple from a distance” in 2019

When the pandemic set in last year, I decided I might as well commit to a round of Tome Topple. I joined for Round 11 and had an absolutely blast BUT… it was an EPIC failure. I didn’t even get through a whole book in that 2 weeks! After that, I worked out a strategy of how I needed to approach the read-a-thon. I came back for Round 12 and did much, much better – I selected a book I was excited about and plowed right through it! In Round 13, I reached out to Sam and joined Tome Topple as a co-host! This co-host experience was absolutely a highlight of 2020 (which was a tough year for all of us). All of the co-hosts are kick ass people and really work hard to make this read-a-thon fun and enjoyable for everyone! Round 14 is coming up and I’m happy to say I’m back to co-host again! Before I get into the reading challenges for this round, I’d like to introduce my other fellow co-hosts! This is such a friendly, dedicated and awesome group of people!

The infamous “Non-Bingo” board is back to help everyone keep track of their reading challenges. As a reminder, there is no “bingo,” this is just a convenient way to track all of the reading prompts!

Round 14’s reading prompts are as follows:

  • The tome that has been on your TBR the longest
  • A tome audiobook
  • Tome with the most pages
  • Seasonal colored tome (for spring or autumn)
  • Read 1 tome
  • A tome written by a BIPOC author
  • Tome from a genre you don’t usually read
  • Tome in a series you haven’t read for a while
  • A tome you started during another round of Tome Topple

The last order of business, my TBR for Round 14! My main objective is to start and finish Queen of Air & Darkness by Cassandra Clare. This is the third and final installment in The Dark Artifices trilogy. Without a doubt, The Dark Artifices has been my favorite series by Cassandra Clare to date. From the first chapter of Lady Midnight, I was hooked! These are all pretty lengthy novels but they don’t feel long which proves just how addicting they are! I haven’t start The Lost Hours series yet but I’ve heard really positive things about this books as well (and feel like they have potential to take over the title of favorite Shadowhunter series)! If I’m able to knock out Queen of Air & Darkness, I’ll consider this round a win! If I have time to start another book, I’ll probably pick either Winter by Marissa Meyer or Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson.

Are you planning to participate in Tome Topple? What’s your upcoming TBR look like? Need help selecting what to read? Leave me a comment – I love to chat about books! Definitely make sure you’re subscribed to my blog and following @Tome_Topple / @ItsMrGeekToYou on Twitter for all your read-a-thon updates!

Until Next Time,
Mr Geek

March ’21 TBR

2021 is moving at an uncomfortably fast pace. Truth be told, I am still processing LAST March when the pandemic really start to begin. My company had us begin working from home on March 16th, so that’s also coming up on its 1 year anniversary already (which is hard for me to believe). About this time last year, I really started to struggle to find my reading groove. There were so many unknowns and I just couldn’t focus on what I was reading (or really anything, if I’m being honest). I’m happy to say that I am in a much better spot, mentally, this year and have been absolutely crushing my reading so far! I have a fun and reasonable TBR planned for March, so let’s dive into the books!

I’m going to be tackling some short-ish books to start off the month because I want to be able to promptly start off Tome Topple Round 14 whenever it kicks off (more on that later). My first book I’m reading Eight Perfect Murders by Peter Swanson. I’ve been a Swanson fan since The Kind Worth Killing. The plot of this book sounds like it’s going to be a fast-paced thrill ride. A local book store owner creates a list of the top 8 most unsolvable murders of the mystery genre. Soon after, the FBI show up and start asking questions. Apparently there’s a copycat murderer on the loose who’s killing individuals that follow the list! Next up, will be Dearly Devoted Dexter by Jeff Lindsay. Since Dexter is getting a reboot later this year, I wanted to pick back up the series and revisit this world. Dearly Devoted Dexter is the second book in the series and continues to extend the story from book one (Darkly Dreaming Dexter). Depending on how much time I have left, I might also try to squeeze in Destroy Me by Tahereh Mafi. Destroy Me is the first novella in the Shatter Me series and takes place between books one and two. I’d like to try to read at least the first half of this series this year (maybe I’ll get adventurous and read the entire thing). It’s funny, I was just talking tonight about how I need to get better about committing to reading series in a timely fashion. In the past, I’ve never enjoyed binge reading series but I think I am going to take another shot at that this year.

All of these shorter books are to position me well to start Tome Topple on time. I am happy to announce that I’ll be back as a co-host for Round 14!! I have a formal announcement post coming later this week with all the details for this round, including my TBR and all of the reading prompts! Be sure to check back!!

March is sure to be a fun month and I’m looking forward to all the books I have planned! Have you read any of the books I mentioned? What did you think? Are you a Dexter fan? Excited about the reboot coming this Fall? As always, I love chatting with you so please sure to leave a comment or tweet me @ItsMrGeekToYou on Twitter!

Until Next Time,
Mr Geek

Tome Topple: Round 13 / November Recap

As I said in a previous tweet, October was FAST and November turned out to be even FASTER! How is that even possible!? I had an… interesting reading month filled with amazing books and very mediocre books. In total, I read 7 books this month and I’m still on track to hit my goal of 52 for the year! Not only did I get a lot of reading in, I also had the pleasure of co-hosting one of my favorite read-a-thons, Tome Topple (more on that later)!

As I previous mentioned, I read The Witches by Roald Dahl and The List by JA Konrath. Neither of these books were that amazing. The Witches was a rather morbid story but The List was quirky and entertaining. I really enjoy Konrath’s unique writing style. The plots are always inventive and I can’t help by get sucked into his stories!

After The List, I moved onto the masterpiece that is The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by VE Schwab. This book was FANTASTIC and it was just what the doctor ordered! While this wasn’t my typical read, I relished in the world and story that Schwab created. The premise was awesome – to escape her destiny, Addie makes a deal with a “Dark God” to free herself. This deal comes at a cost, no one can remember Addie after they’ve left her presence. Addie lives for over 300 years, roaming the earth, stealing what she needs until one day she meets Henry… and Henry can remember her. For me personally, this book really took shape about halfway through when Addie meets Henry and the “adventure” really begins. The story flowed in such an amazing and poetic way. If you haven’t picked this one up yet, move it to the top of your TBR ASAP.

Rounding out the month, I read a couple self-help books. The Person You Mean To Be By Dolly Chugh and Atomic Habits by James Clear. Dolly Chugh was a featured speaker at a recent work event. I was able to hear her talk and was blown away by how personable and relatable she is. I decided to pick up her book, The Person You Mean To Be, on audiobook because she narrated it. I don’t want to “review” this book because the subject matter isn’t meant to be entertaining – it’s meant to be informative and challenge / stretch your views. Did I agree with all of the ideas presented in this book? Absolutely not. Did these views challenge my to think in different ways and looks at certain topics from a different angle? You bet. This is one of the only books on GoodReads I didn’t give a star rating to because I’d encourage everyone to pick this up and give it a try. After I finished Dolly’s book I moved onto Atomic Habits. Atomic Habits was HANDS DOWN one of the best self-help / development books I have ever read. Clear gives you real, actionable advices for helping you to start new habits or break bad ones. I think what I appreciated the most about his take on habits was very rarely did he make the book about him (i.e. I did this or I struggled to do this) and instead talked to principles and actuality. He was also extremely easy to relate to! I found myself taking notes on ways to implement these strategies in my everyday life (and New Year Resolutions are coming)! If you’re looking for ways to build better habits, give this book a try. I can confidently say you’ll find it extremely useful!

The last couple books I read this month were Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo and The Toll by Neal Schusterman. Clap When You Land was an interesting book and, again, not something that I typically pick up. The story is about two sisters, who don’t know they are sisters, until their father dies in a tragic plane crash. The story is told from each of the girls’ perspectives. Acevedo did an incredible job giving each of these characters a unique voice. There was small nuances and cultural influences that really shown through into each of the characters. My last book I finished was The Toll and that was ONE HECK OF A FINALE. I started the Arc of a Scythe trilogy on New Year’s Day of and made my way through all 3 books over the course of the year. Scythe and Thunderhead (books 1 and 2, respectively) were absolutely incredible. I heard iffy things about The Toll, so I subliminally pushed it off. While it was a little on the long side (there was definitely some fluff that couldn’t been cut out) I found the story to be interesting and engaging. There were some interesting twists sprinkled throughout and I found the ending to be pretty spot on. It wasn’t too perfect or cookie cutter and had just enough grit and uniqueness!

Tome Topple Wrap Up

I was incredibly lucky to help co-host Tome Topple Round 13. I had a blast leading reading sprints and talking books with all of the other readers participating in the read-a-thon. I have to hand it to Sam (from @ThoughtsOnTomes) and the rest of the co-hosts, they do an incredible job running things. I’ve participated in this read-a-thon several times before and never realized how much work goes into creating it! I work in eCommerce for a retailer, so the week of Thanksgiving was a little crazy for me. I ended up finishing my only tome (The Toll) on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. Another round is scheduled for February-ish, so I am hoping to topple a few books during that round since life should be a lot calmer then!

We’re well into December, so I’ll be posting a TBR soon and then my year in review wrap up! Hope everyone is staying safe and I’ll back with another post this week!

Until we meet again,
Mr Geek