Update: Life and Books (Feb 2020)


So, February is over, and it’s been… a month. Not a good one, not a particularly worse than usual one, just a month, for me, at least.

I tried three weeks of physical therapy for my weird nerve problem in my forehead, but I don’t know if it’s helped at all, and I’m just completely exhausted. My body can’t take leaving the house that much. I’m going to try continuing with using a TENS machine at home for a while, as well as the heat and massage I’ve been doing, to see if it helps over time.

I listened to another Audible Original audio drama, Beezer, and I was surprised to find that I loved it! It was very cute with some great messages.

Monster Prom got another update and I FINALLY got an official ending with my Interdimensional Prince! And it was so much better than I ever expected and ended up involving my other favorite non-romance option character too. I figured the mod ending I created about him would fall to the wayside now that people have a real ending, but mine is still getting a trickle of downloads, so that makes me happy too.

I mostly just went to PT and did a lot of audiobook listening this month, so that’s about it for me. Oh, and I also did a handstand ๐Ÿ™‚

Blog/Bookish Updates:

I’m constantly running behind on comments, visiting blogs, etc. lately because of my health. If I haven’t responded to you, know that I do appreciate your visits, and I’m not purposely ignoring you!


Books I Received for Review:

Nothing this month.


Books I Finished:

*Normally I link the book covers to Amazon, but there are A LOT of books here, so I’m just going to link to some in the text below.*

Never, Never by Brianna ShrumWicked Saints by Emily A. DuncanReal Vampires Don't Sparkle by Amy FecteauReal Vampires Do It in the Dark by Amy FecteauReal Vampires Take No Prisoners by Amy FecteauIn Darkness Bound by Christine PriceThe Usual Apocalypse by Christine PriceHunter of Demons by Jordan L. HawkInfluential Magic by Deanna ChaseDamned If You Do by Marie SextonIt's a Vampire Christmas by Lia DavisThe Stolen Luck by Shawna ReppertFirelands by Michael JensenWolf Hall by Harper FoxTrapped Wizard by Yamila AbrahamMidnight at the Satyr Inn by Rebekah LewisBlood and Needles by Billy LyonsDemon's Dance by Evey BrettA Vampire For Christmas by Various AuthorsTreasure by Kim FieldingPriddy's Tale by Harper FoxRhapsody for Piano and Ghost by Z.A. MaxfieldOnce Upon a Haunted Moor by Harper FoxTinsel Fish by Harper FoxDon't Let Go by Harper FoxKitto by Harper FoxGuardians of the Haunted Moor by Harper FoxThird Solstice by Harper Fox

I have had a VERY prolific reading (listening) month, as I’m sure you can see. I could try and downplay it by pointing out that a few of these were only 1 or 2 hours, and more of them were only 4 or 5 hours, and most of them were under 12 hours… but no, it was still a damn lot of listening lol.

Dislikes – Unfortunately I DNFed one book (not pictured above) because the MC was so abhorrent with no redeeming or interesting qualities, and he never showed any growth in the book, according to reviews. Blood and Needles was nearly as bad, but I finished that one. Honestly, it read like a cis man’s sex, drug, and blood-filled fantasy, complete with sexism, misogyny, and various other problematic elements. Trapped Wizard and Satyr Inn were short stories I only listened to because I wanted the Audible badges for completing a certain number of books in one go lol (although I still held a bit of hope that they’d be good). It’s a Vampire Christmas was also… something. It might not have been quite so bad if not for the author’s constant use of ‘male’ and ‘female’ instead of ‘man’ and ‘woman’. That may not sound that bad, but trust me, it is.

In-Between Feelings – Never Never, Influential Magic, The Stolen Luck, A Vampire for Christmas, Treasure, Priddy’s Tale, and the first two Tyack & Frayne books were mostly just books I enjoyed but that weren’t super memorable. Wicked Saints, Hunter of Demons, and Demon’s Dance were ones I enjoyed to varying degrees but had some issues with.

Likes – Real Vampires Don’t Sparkle is one of my favorite series, and I felt like rereading it, so I listened to the audiobooks. While I prefer my own imagination to some of the choices the narrator made, I still loved these books even more than I did in my previous reads, even bumping one of my ratings up to the full 5 stars, and the others to 4.5 stars. In Darkness Bound and The Usual Apocalypse, a kind of duology, were also rereads. Again, didn’t super love the narrators, but enjoyed the books. Damned If You Do was great all-around, story and narration, aside from disability being used as a plot device. Firelands was beautifully written with great narration. Wolf Hall was a total surprise because I’d given up on ever really loving short fiction, but this was fantastic! Rhapsody for Piano and Ghost was heartwarming and fun, also with great narration. And I’m enjoying the Tyack & Frayne series more as I get further into it, and mostly liking the narration.


What I’m Loving:

This month, what I’m loving is…


I’ve talked about it before, but no one ever listens to my YouTube recs, although you really should with this one lol. Even though it’s drawing-based, just listening to their jokes and banter, even if I can only glance a view times, brings me so much joy. And one of them has the most infectious, happiness-creating laugh. I also love how unproblematic and inclusive they try to be. If you want some recs, “Drawing Our Home States as People” is a good recent video, but I’ll also always love the first Drawfee video I ever stumbled on, “Artists Draw WEIRD Stock Photos Based on Their Descriptions.”


In Case You Missed It:

Here are the highlights:

– I reviewed The Last Wish by Andrzej Sapkowski, a fun first book in the Witcher series.
– I talked about how much I see and hear in my head while reading.
– I reviewed A Blind Legend, an awesome game that is entirely audio with no visuals.
– I reviewed Wolf Hall by Harper Fox, a beautifully written, somewhat surreal supernatural short story.


Talk to me!

How was your February?


Your Thoughts


18 thoughts on “Update: Life and Books (Feb 2020)

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  1. Greg

    Yay for handstands! ๐Ÿ™‚ That is so cool that Monster Prom is getting updates. I kinda want to play it again now lol. And that’s really cool about your mod too!!

    Never Never looks fun (I’m a sucker for a good cover, as always) but if it was only so- so then maybe I’ll just look for it at the library.

    Drawing Our Home states As People- okay that has me curious! I’ll be checking that out haha…

    1. Kristen Burns

      Monster Prom has had a ton of updates over time with new special endings, I love it! Maybe you’d like Never Never more than I did, but if you ever do audiobooks, it’s on Hoopla ๐Ÿ™‚ I hope you like the video! Gosh I love the Drawfee gang lol.

  2. Roberta R.

    ๐Ÿ˜ฎ So many books. I read your tweet about your accidental 29 books for February LOL.

    I hope the new therapy repays in the long run. Hang on!

  3. Sam@wlabb

    You read an impressive number of books, and look at that handstand. I could never do one, and I don’t battle your health issues. As always, I hope you find some relief.

  4. Olivia Roach

    I hope it has been helping even if you’re not sure about it yet… And as I said on twitter, so cool that you can still do your handstand after all this time! Amazing! Whoa, girl, you read SO MUCH this month! I am very impressed. I really enjoyed Never Never back when I read it but we all know not to trust teen Olivia’s ratings anymore unless I deem them to still stand ๐Ÿ˜› I was curious about Wicked Saints because everyone hauled it but no one reviewed it? It sounds meh though so not sure I will pick it up.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thanks!! Tbh I’m also impressed with the amount I read, haha. Yeah I can’t even trust my ratings from like a year ago lol. But sometimes we like different things, and that’s ok!

  5. Daniela Ark

    ohhh you read Wicked Saints! Can’t wait for your review! It was a DNF for me ๐Ÿ™‚ I remember seeing your handstand on twitter. I’m not sure if I had the opportunity to reply but I LOVED IT! You go girl! Hope things get better soon!