The Weekly Update: 1/31/16

Wow, I have definitely gotten off to a great bookish/bloggy start this year!

I finally started taking my blog more seriously and getting the hang of things this past month, and I'm happy about that.

Normally I just talk about the week, but with this post falling exactly on January 31st, I couldn't resist doing a bit of an update about the whole month :-) So what are all these good things you ask? Well...

Blog/Bookish Updates:

First of all, this is the longest I’ve ever kept a blog. It’s been about six months, and I have no desire to stop. In the past I’d tried other blogs, and they were lucky if they lasted two weeks.

Second, my pageviews doubled from last month! It’s still not a lot, but it’s significant for me. I’ve also been meeting lots of new bloggers since the year started, and I’ve gotten better at being friendly online 🙂

Third, I started requesting from Netgalley! I was so intimidated, but it’s not as scary as I thought it’d be. I still check the preferences for every publisher before requesting in order to avoid the books I KNOW I won’t get, but some publishers/authors are awesome and don’t just care about the numbers.

Fourth, I’ve only come across one book I rated below 3 stars (actually, it was a graphic novel, which you will see below), and I’ve even found one 4.5 and one 5 star, which is rare for me!

Aaaaaand, fifth, I’ve been doing great on my reading goals to read about different supernatural creatures, retellings, classics, graphic novels, circus books, etc.

I don’t have any exciting real life news this week though, so on with the books!

Books I Finished:

Real Vampires Do It in the Dark by Amy Fecteau | books, reading, book covers
iZombie Vol. 1: Dead to the World by Chris Roberson & Michael Allred | books, reading, book covers
iZombie Vol. 2: uVampire by Chris Roberson & Michael Allred | books, reading, book covers
iZombie Vol. 3: Six Feet Under & Rising by Chris Roberson & Michael Allred | books, reading, book covers
iZombie Vol. 4: Repossessed by Chris Roberson & Michael Allred | books, reading, book covers
Sex Criminals Vol. 1 by Matt Fraction & Chip Zdarsky | books, reading, book covers
The Rest Falls Away by Colleen Gleason | books, reading, book covers
Cogling by Jordan Elizabeth | books, reading, book covers

So I didn’t mean to read five graphic novel volumes within a span of, like, 24 hours—it just kind of happened? I wasn’t feeling well, so I couldn’t do much else, and it was a good distraction. And, to be fair, graphic novels take far less time to read.

Anyway, I really liked the Real Vampires book, a hilarious and solid second in series. Then there was my binge-read of the entire iZombie series. I was really liking it, the story and the artwork… until it ended. I hated the ending and sat at my computer frowning for a while after I finished >:-( Sex Criminals was hilarious though! I have to wait and see if Hoopla gets the rest of the volumes so I can keep reading. Unfortunately The Rest Falls Away also had a depressing ending, but I may still continue the series. Cogling was a fun, albeit a bit young for my taste, Netgalley read.

Song of the Week:

“I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” Cover by Sleeping At Last – I feel like everyone thinks of this as a fun, quirky kind of song, or it just makes them think of How I Met Your Mother, but this cover version really brings out the beauty of the song.

In Case You Missed It:

Cover Characteristics: Book Covers featuring Butterflies (2)
Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Laugh Out Loud Book Blurbs
Discussion: Audiobooks, Yea or Nay?
Graphic Novel Review: Saga Vol. 3 by Brian K. Vaughan & Fiona Staples
Book Review: Real Vampires Don’t Sparkle (Real Vampires Don’t Sparkle Book 1) by Amy Fecteau

The Sunday Post Link-Up:

Once again, I’m linking up to The Sunday Post at Caffeinated Book Reviewer 🙂


Talk to me!

How are your goals for the new year going?
Find any good books or music this week?


Your Thoughts


36 thoughts on “The Weekly Update: 1/31/16

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  1. Annemieke

    Ah, don’t ask me about my goals. I’m so behind, haha.

    Congrats on the doubling of pageviews. Knowing more people are reading what you post is a great feeling. 🙂

  2. Daniela Ark

    oh glad you want to stick around! I really enjoy your blog. I must be one of those visitors that doubled your pageviews. I’m always here 🙂

    1. Kristen Burns

      And I love you for being one of those people always here! So thanks 😀 Honestly, I think becoming part of such a friendly community has made all the difference. Blogging wouldn’t be fun if I felt like I were sitting around alone with no one caring what I had to say.

  3. Daniela Ark

    I agree! blogging is a social experience for me. BTW… I’m trying not to have a meltdown now but my site has been down for 4 hours!!! and they don’t know why :(:(:(:(

  4. Daniela Ark

    here is one scary question from tech support: “Could you please confirm whether there is a website built in this domain? Because it is currently it is only showing new installation step.”
    I’m like…”OMG YES!!! I had a blog in this site for almost a year!!” I want to crryyyyy 🙁

  5. Greg

    Hey congrats on the pageviews. I like your goal of reading different supernatural creatures- I feel like there are so many different kinds it would be fun to explore some of the lesser known varieties.

    I read a Colleen Gleason book and it was okay but it didn’t wow me. Glad the GN’s worked out for ya. I haven’t read any this year yet…

    Nice song of the week. Definitely different from the original but in a good way. I hadn’t heard this version.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thanks 🙂 It has been fun reading about some of the less common creatures.

      I actually did try a different graphic novel first, it looked great from the cover and I was all excited, but then the art inside was so different and completely not for me. LOVED the art in iZombie though.

      Right? I didn’t know that song could sound like that lol.

  6. Jade @ Bedtime Bookworm

    I’ve heard Sex Criminals is really good! The idea is pretty funny LOL. That’s great about your page views! I’ve been pretty terrible this month about blogging. The holidays totally threw me off and I’m so behind on EVERYTHING (I’m trying to post my DECEMBER wrap up as we speak, case and point!) I’m hoping to get caught up in the next month or so though…

    1. Kristen Burns

      The premise was what drew me in, but it was actually the characters and their relationship that completely hooked me! Thanks, and good luck catching up with everything 🙂

    1. Kristen Burns

      Lol yeah… my past blogs were really sad attempts. But this one’s working since it’s finally focused *and* something I’m passionate about. Plus the great community 🙂

  7. Laura Thomas

    Fun goals. I’m always looking for new supernatural creatures. Especially the scary kind. LOL Looks like you have some wonderful new reads this week to keep you happy:)

  8. Deborah

    Kristen I’m really glad you’re getting into the book blogging and enjoying it and what a great start to the year!!!

    I’ve cut back on my NetGalley reads a lot as I get a lot of stuff from the big Aussie publishers, but there are some o/s books they don’t offer.

    Well done on the reading goals as well!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thanks! I really am loving this community. And I chose my reading goals well since I’m having fun with them lol.

      I apparently didn’t get the Netgalley mania that lots of bloggers do when they start there? I’m staying picky with my requests but am really happy that I started using it. I get why you’re cutting back though since you’re getting books from the publishers. Makes sense!

  9. Tiffany

    Congrats on doubling your page views! That’s wonderful! Plus, you’re off to a great start with your reading goals. Looks like you’re off to a great start.

  10. Maureen's Books (@MaureenHinten)

    Congrats on your six months as a book blogger. I think your book blog is and looks wonderful. I would have never guest you’ve only been doing this for six months. Impressive! Keep up the good work! 😉
    I’ve honestly never read any graphic novels before. I have just never been interested in them.. But I’m thinking I should give it a try sometimes.
    Have a great week! 😉

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thank you! You just made me happy 🙂

      I hadn’t read any graphic novels until late last year when I tried Saga. This week was my first time venturing into different series. I still prefer normal books, but graphic novels are great when I kind of need a break or am having trouble focusing. Can’t hurt to try one! You have a great week too!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thanks! It is nice feeling like I’m actually getting the hang of things getting more comfortable. The other blogs were just embarrassing though lol. I don’t even know what most of them were about which probably explains why they lasted less than two weeks, haha.

  11. Lola

    I think you’re doing amazing with your blog! And that’s great you saw your pageviews going up like that, it’s nice to see visible proof that you’re doing well. I don’t look at my stats as often, but it’s nice to get a feel for if you’re on the right track. And I am excited you started requesting books on netgalley, it’s a bit intimidating at first indeed. I was very carefull with requesting books at first and then got more loser and started requesting more books.
    Yes graphic novels take far less time to read, which is one of the reasons I read them less often to be honest. I used to read a lot of manga’s, but compared to normal books they are pricier for the time you spent reading them. I do enjoy them though and it’s fun to have pictures and story. I haven’t read Cogling yet, but I am glad to hear you enjoyed it even though it was a bit young. I hope you’ll have a great week!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thank you so much 🙂 I do check my stats, probably because I’m still new so the stats are relatively exciting lol. And it does help to gauge whether what you’re doing is working, etc. And I’m so glad I started using Netgalley. I think I said before that you were the one who encouraged me and convinced me to go for it.

      I borrowed all the graphic novels online from Hoopla, so I didn’t have to worry about the prices 🙂 But yeah, if I did have to pay for them, I probably wouldn’t read too many. I have figured out that, for me, graphic novels are good when I kind of need a break and am having trouble focusing on other books. I guess it’s easier to focus on pictures when my mind is all over the place.

      Yeah, I wanted to love Cogling, but I think it just wasn’t quite for me. It wasn’t a bad book though, so I think you might like it. I’m posting my review on the blog this week. You have a great week too!

  12. Bookworm Brandee

    Wow! You did have a great month, Kristen. And I’m so happy to have found you and hope you’ll stick around. 😉 I’ve really enjoyed your posts and getting to know you. Ooh, and congrats on taking on Netgalley! It became too dangerous for me to visit often…I’m still trying to get my rating up! 😉
    Have a great week!

    1. Kristen Burns

      You are so sweet! I’m glad to have found you too! Thank you 🙂 I’ve actually been really good about the Netgalley thing. I’ve read so many stories about bloggers going crazy with requests lol, but I’m super picky about books I accept for review, so I’m still requesting very few and keeping my score up.

  13. Heather @ Random Redheaded Ramblings

    Glad you are enjoying your blogging, I never thought I would keep it up but I have been nearly two years!

    NetGalley scared me too to begin with, I think I started building up my percentage with read now books before I even attempted to request from the big boys!!

    Have a good week!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thanks! Two years is great! Makes me wonder if I’ll still be going strong after another year and a half, but I like to think the answer is yes 🙂

      Yeah, my percentage has been rocky with so few books under my belt, so I’ve been only requesting a new book after submitting the last one, but I’m slowly getting it more stable. If I had known there were read now books before I started, I’d have started so much sooner lol. You have a good week too!