The Weekly Update: 9/3/17


Whew! It has been over a month since I have done a Weekly Update, and I have so much stuff to share all in one post now that it’s a little overwhelming. I’m still not sure I’ll be doing these every week though. I might switch to every other week or monthly. I’ll figure something out eventually. Anyway…

I moved, finally. Honestly, it’s not the best situation, and there are already problems that might not even have solutions, so I’ve been extra exhausted with a lot of brain fog and not feeling at my best (‘best’ already being a very relative term to begin with because chronic illness). I’m also not feeling my worst though, so at least there’s that!

Also, some good news, remember I was debating what size bed to get? I went with queen, and I definitely made the right choice! I love that I can just roll and flop all around in any direction and not worry about falling off. I think I also made the right choice of mattress. I had never had a bed with a foam mattress, so I was worried about that, but I went with the Nolah Sleep mattress, and it’s SO COMFORTABLE. It turns out I like the squishiness. It doesn’t hurt my hips or shoulders when I sleep on my side, it doesn’t hurt my heels when I sleep on my back, it doesn’t hurt my back when I lay on my stomach and elbows to read… I don’t know how well these mattresses hold up long-term, but so far I love it. On the off chance you’re looking to buy a new mattress and want to check this one out, here’s my referral link (you even get $75 off if you use it!) 🙂

I also had some funny dreams in the past few weeks:

Get it? CPR so I could kiss him? I’m not even that smooth in real life lol.

Anyway, enough about “real life,” let’s move on to the bookish stuff 🙂

Blog/Bookish Updates:

Some weird stuff has been happening! Normally I like intense, dark books, but for a while I was actually in the mood for cute and fluffy??!?! Also normally I prefer series, but I was also in the mood for standalones for a while, or at least those series that have different MCs in each book. I guess with all the stress and moving, fluffy, self-contained stories were just easier to focus on and enjoy.

And I am normally not a DNFer, but I think I’m starting to learn the ways of DNFing as I DNFed I think my third book this year.

AND I needed some retail therapy and ended up buying some physical books, including whole series that I haven’t even started, which is another thing I don’t usually do. I’m all out of sorts lately. Actually, it was that damn “get free shipping if you spend X amount!” crap. It works, man. I had to spend enough to get the free shipping. On multiple sites. I haven’t gotten the latest order in the mail yet, but I did finally get around to snapping some pictures of books I ordered weeks ago:

Interview with the Vampire: Claudia's Story by Anne Rice & Ashley Marie WitterFine Lines by Bella Roccaforte

Chester 5000 XYV: Isablle & George by Jess FinkThe Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black

Unfortunately, I really haven’t gotten that much reading done since the move, which is another weird thing. I blame the brain fog.

Last but not least, in case anyone cares or might get confused, I’ve started posting on Monday, Wednesday, Friday now. But it’s still two reviews and one other type of post. And I guess sometimes updates on Sunday.


Books I Received for Review:

The Pirate of Fathoms Deep by Megan Derr
The Heart of the Lost Star by Megan Derr
Dance with the Devil by Megan Derr
Dance in the Dark by Megan Derr
Dance Only for Me by Megan Derr
Shield of the Dragon by Megan Derr
Twilight by Megan Derr

July 30th: I know this looks crazy. I went so many weeks getting no or hardly any review copies, and of course I’d end up with A WHOLE BUNCH during the few weeks I took a weekly update break. Anyway, I tried one book in each Megan Derr series I had copies from, and then I wanted to read all the rest, so that’s where the Tales of the High Court and Dance with the Devil books came from.

Taproot by Keezy Young
The Little Red Wolf by Amelie Flechais
Welcome to Crash by Lina Langley
Shadow Rise by Audrey Grey

August 6th: Taproot and The Little Red Wolf are graphic novels from NetGalley. Welcome to Crash is from Dreamspinner. Shadow Rise is from NG, a sequel to a series I started last year.

A Bargain in Silver by Josie Jaffrey

August 13th: A Bargain in Silver is from the author via Lovers of Paranormal.

August 20th: I finally got a bit of control back and didn’t request any books this week lol.

27 Hours by Tristina Wright
Three Heart Echo by Keary Taylor

August 27th: 27 Hours is from NetGalley. Wasn’t sure I’d get accepted for that one, so I’m happy I did since it has disability 🙂 Three Heart Echo is from the author’s review group.

I Heart Robot by Suzanne van Rooyen

September 3rd: I Heart Robot is from Skolion.


Books I Finished:

Love Song for a Vampire by J.L. Aarne
The High King's Golden Tongue by Megan Derr

July 30th: Love Song for a Vampire was great, aside from the head hopping. The High King’s Golden Tongue was also great, funny with lovable characters.

The Pirate of Fathoms Deep by Megan Derr
The Heart of the Lost Star by Megan Derr
Taproot by Keezy Young
The Little Red Wolf by Amelie Flechais
Shield of the Dragon by Megan Derr

August 6th: I couldn’t help but immediately continue with the Tales of the High Court series, and the sequels were just as sweet and cute and fun to read. Taproot was sweet too, though short. The Little Red Wolf turned out to be more of a picture book than a GN, but it was dark with art some people might really enjoy. Shield of the Dragon was also sweet.

Welcome to Crash by Lina Langley
Long Walk to Valhalla by Adam Smith & Matthew Fox
The Watcher's Son by J.L. Aarne

August 13th: I had some issues with the writing in Welcome to Crash, but the premise and relationships were intriguing and complex. I feel like I didn’t really “get” Long Walk to Valhalla. I thought The Watcher’s Son was even better than the other books in the Dale Bruyer series though and really enjoyed it.

The Given & the Taken by L.A. Witt

August 20th: The Given and the Taken was alright, but I didn’t really feel the emotion or feel the connections in the romances.

Black City Saint by Richard A. Knaak

August 27th: Black City Saint is one I’ve wanted to read for a while, and I realized my library had the ebook! I liked it and want to continue the series, but unfortunately the library doesn’t have the next book 🙁

27 Hours by Tristina Wright
Three Heart Echo by Keary Taylor
Dawn by Damnation by Clark Casey

September 3rd: 27 Hours was good with LOTS of diversity of all kinds, but it never really gripped me for some reason. Three Heart Echo didn’t grip me either. Dawn in Damnation had some issues but was an entertaining read that was just right for my SFF western craving.


In Case You Missed It:

July 30th:
– I reviewed Sword of the King by Megan Derr, a M/M urban fantasy with a unique take on dragon shifters.
– I shared book covers featuring impeccably dressed characters.
– I reviewed Seti’s Heart by Kiernan Kelly, a fun M/M paranormal with a reanimated mummy.

August 6th:
– I posted mini reviews for three urban fantasy books—Pyresnakes, Scarecrow, and Charm City.
– I did the OMG This Song Book Tag, in which I talked about both books and music!
– I reviewed The High King’s Golden Tongue by Megan Derr, a sweet, funny M/M high fantasy romance.

August 13th:
– I reviewed Vanity in Dust by Cheryl Low, a decadent, soap opera-esque fantasy.
– I asked what kinds of bookish risks you take.
– I reviewed The Storm Lords by Ravon Silvius, a light, calm M/M high fantasy.

August 20th:
I reviewed Steal the Light by Lexi Blake, an urban fantasy/paranormal romance with more heart-wrenching emotion & humor than anything else I’ve ever read!
– I did the Book Title Book Tag, in which I answered questions using… wait for it… book titles!
– I reviewed The Pirate of Fathom’s Deep by Megan Derr, a sweet high fantasy M/M romance.

August 27th:
– I reviewed Daughter of the Night by Laekan Zea Kemp, a somewhat disappointing series ender.
I shared another update about my Supernatural Sims House, plus a scene I wrote about #Jacovine4LYF ;-P
– I reviewed The Glamour Thieves by Don Allmon, a gritty, sexually charged M/M UF with orcs and elves!

September 3rd:
– I reviewed Black City Saint by Richard A. Knaak, a unique combination of urban fantasy, fae, dragons, Catholicism, and the Prohibition Era.
– I discussed how sometimes reading makes me feel like a privacy-invader.
– I reviewed The Heart of the Lost Star by Megan Derr, an adorable M/M high fantasy w/ a trans MC.


The Sunday Post Link-Up:

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


Talk to me!

Have you found any good books or music lately?
Have you had any strange bookish stuff happening to you?
What's been going on in your lives the past month?


Your Thoughts


48 thoughts on “The Weekly Update: 9/3/17

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  1. Greg

    Yes join the ranks of the DNF’ers! It’s good for you. 🙂 And yay for flopping lol- flopping is good and you need room to do it! Ha ha glad you got moved, hope some of the problems get worked out. Oh and I think that getting books in the mail is addicting- I seriously think I get a dopamine rush when I get book mail.

    27 Hours- is that dystopian? Nice cover.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Lol flopping is great. T hanks 🙂 Oh my gosh, bookmail is SO addicting. I actually got the package I mentioned last night after this post went up (I didn’t realize the packages were sitting outside lol) and was all excited.

      27 Hours is about colonies on a moon in space, but I feel like it was kinda dystopian too.

  2. chucklesthescot

    Ah discovering the joys of a DNF! It makes life so much easier if you can do this when needed! It’s been a while since I DNFed…July I think? I’ve been picking books recently! August has been a great month for watching lots of films…I’m finally learning to sit still long enough to watch a film instead of feeling I should be doing something else. The second half of the month was all about various monsters in water and I found a few great new books and authors which I’m pleased about. I think I need to go back to setting my alarm and getting up earlier to fit in everything I need to do! Hope things at your new place get better for you.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Lol still trying not to overdo it with the DNFs though. Trying to figure out when to DNF is hard for me! Glad you’ve had a good film month! I kinda feel the same when I watch films, that I should be at least multitasking or something. Thanks 🙂

  3. Ioana

    I’m so glad you’re flooping around! You deserve some good flooping in your life ❤.
    I just love how you always review books that nobody else does! You have such unique reading tastes!!
    Also hello to the dark DNF-ing side. Here we have cookies and a huge amount of guilt over all the books we left unfinished. I honestly think I dnf as many books as I read in a year ?. Help me.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Lol I never realized how great flopping could be!

      Thanks 🙂

      Man, if I’d known there were cookies, I’d have joined the DNF side sooner! For me it’s less guilt and more indecision, like, what if that book actually got better and now I missed out on it?! But that’s why I’ve still been super picky with DNFs, only dropping the books that I can tell are just really not working for me and are very unlikely to get better (e.g. if I don’t like the writing style).

  4. Lys @ The Mad Reader

    As a professional DNFer, I don’t know how readers do to not DNF.
    I’m the same with free shipping, I want to save 5-10€ so I’m going to spend at least 30€ more , it makes sense when I’m doing it lol

    1. Kristen Burns

      Lol I’ve never understood how people *do* DNF.

      Haha, right? Like, I just can’t STAND that those $10 are gonna be wasted on NOTHING, so instead I’ll spend $30 more. Smart move, companies. Gets me every time lol.

  5. Wattle

    Dreams are so weird, reading others makes me glad I’m not alone in that weirdness though haha

    Ah DNFing, I struggle with that too sometimes. Though these days I’m just putting books down and waiting to see if I want to pick them up again. And if I don’t, oh well!

    Free shipping on orders over X amount is such a trap. And I fall for it every time!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Lol I’ve had the weirdest dreams for my whole life.

      Yeah, the few books I have DNFed, I feel like I made the right choice because I haven’t had any desire to go back to them.

      It is such a trap! It gets me almost every time!

  6. Lola

    I am glad to see you wrote a weekly update post again :). Doing them once every two weeks or monthly sounds like a good alternative to weekly. Sorry to hear your new housing situation isn’t the best. But that does sound great you went with the right bed size and your new matrass is so comfy.

    Sounds like you’re a bit out of sorts when it comes to reading. But it makes sense that with all the moving going on you liked to read some fluffy reads. That’s nice you got the rest of those Megan Derr books after you enjoyed the first books. Oh and those free shipping rules always get to me too, I always try and spend enough to get the free shipping.

    I also had a DNF this month, sometimes DNF’ing a book works best rather than push through it. It looks like you got a lot of books read this month. Glad to hear there were some good ones. Have a great week!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thanks 🙂 Yeah, I’m still undecided, but I think every week might just be too much for me, so every other week might be a good compromise.

      I was totally out of sorts, but I think I’m kinda back to my normal reading habits now lol. That free shipping is just so tempting!

      Yeah, I’m still trying to not go crazy DNFing, but I’m seeing that in some cases, it’s worth it. Thanks, you too!

  7. Kei @ The Lovely Page Reviews

    The girl on the INK cover looks so much like Hayley Williams from Paramore! My 27 Hours review is 1k already and I’m not even half done with it, so many things to cover and so much to discuss about it but I really enjoyed reading it.

  8. Andreea

    I will move in 7 months and I am absolutely terrified – also have to buy a bed too so I might consider a foam mattress.

    BTW, I really enjoyed The Coldest Girl in Coldtown. It was an enjoyable read. Looking forward to the review and to the next weekly update!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Yeah, moving is a lot of work, and I was stressed about it for months too :-/ I really do recommend the Nolah! Especially if you’re a side sleeper. I wrote that whole little paragraph before I even realized I had a referral link, so it’s not just a sales pitch lol. But whatever mattress you buy, just make sure you do research and read lots of reviews 🙂 And find a company that gives you a risk-free trial period.

      Awesome, I’m really looking forward to reading it!

  9. Karen

    I’m trying really hard to not waste my time I’m books I’m not enjoying. DNF’ing is hard for me too.

    I’m SO into light and fluffy right now. It’s all I feel like reading. But I go through phases so it might change again soon.

    For What It’s Worth

    1. Kristen Burns

      See, to me, I rarely DNF because it feels like all the time I already spent reading the book was wasted, whereas it’s not wasted if I finish. So I still only DNF if I’ve read less than 10 or 15%.

      Lol isn’t it weird how we go through phases sometimes?

  10. Rachel @ Chocolate and Chapters

    I hope that whatever the situation is that you’re going through right now gets better. 🙁 And yay for comfortable mattresses! That’s such a good feeling. There’s nothing like getting into bed at the end of a long day, especially when your bed is heavenly.

    I LOVEE “Interview with the Vampire” and recently saw the book “Claudia’s Story.” I’m very intrigued. I wonder what I’d think of it. Have you already read “Interview with the Vampire” and are you planning on writing a review on “Claudia’s Story”?

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thanks 🙂

      I read the first 13 or so books in the Vampire Chronicles series in high school, so I did read Interview, but it was over 10 years ago. I’d really like to read it again though before reading the GN, just to refresh myself and see what I think of it now! But yes, I plan to review Claudia’s Story once I read it 🙂

  11. Carole @ Carole's Random Life in Books

    Looks like you had a great month of reading! Lot of new books to keep you busy. Moving sounds like so much work. I am sorry things are not perfect but I am glad you have a bed you like. That’s something. Enjoy your new books and try not to kill any squirrels in your dreams 🙂

  12. Mallory

    I was just looking at the Lexi Blake/Steal the Light series on my kindle and wondering if I should give it a try! Just saw your review and am deciding to give-it-a-go becuase CLEARLY it’s fate that I was just thinking about starting the book and suddenly a 4.5 star review appeared. You made the series sound like a lot of fun – thanks for the recommendation 🙂

  13. Let's Get Beyond Tolerance

    Definitely some interesting dreams. LOL I wish I remembered mine more often – I tend to just remember the really sad ones, you know? I could skip those, thank you very much!

    Looks like you’ve gotten some great books recently.


  14. Dragonfly @ Our Familiarium

    oh this is too funny! now when I making my way back to the dark side you are getting all cute and fluffy?? and a DNFer??? I HAD to smile when I read that! Sorry. 🙂

    I’m very happy to hear you are not feeling your worse and you got a great new bed and mattress that are making you more comfortable. I was wondering why all the twittering about dreams! Maybe its that ! Maybe your brain is resting more at night and getting all creative 🙂

    OHHH you got interview with the Vampire! I always wanted to read that one. Once I fully enter the dark side that may be one of the first I’ll read!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Hahaha we are out of sync! Actually, I’m back to my normal dark side, so it’s all good 😉 But yeah, Idk, I’m coming over to the DNF side lol.

      Thanks 🙂 Lol, or maybe my mattress is so comfy because it’s sentient and implanting funny dreams into my head *gasp* :-O

      This is actually the graphic novel of Claudia’s Story, not the novel. But I have read the novel (and the first 13 or so books in the Vampire Chronicles). But wait, you? YOU are gonna read about vampires?!

  15. Becky @ A Fool's Ingenuity

    Yay, you’ve done a Sunday post (although I’m a little late commenting). Glad the move happened even if there are new issues to be found at your new place. And when it comes to beds bigger is always better. I like to starfish on my bed, I’ve never been so glad to be single so I can stretch out. I may change my tune when winter hits and the nights are cold. I am jealous by the sound of your mattress, though.

    Yay for some bookish retail therapy, isn’t it great just getting those books in the post? I get so excited everytime. Also, I know this is like a months worth of books but look at all that reading! So much reading.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Yep! Thanks 🙂 And haha, yes, I remember you talking about starfishing. I do that sometimes too now lol.

      I get so excited too! You’d think it was a gift from how happy I get, even though I spent my own money.

  16. Danya @ Fine Print

    Oh, what a bummer about your new living situation Kristen. Hopefully things will work out — at least you’ve got a lovely new queen size bed to flop around in in the meantime! I’m excited to hear your take on 27 Hours, since I’ve heard nothing but good things around the twitterverse.

  17. Evelina

    Yay, you did a Sunday update! I’m late on my rounds this week (did you see how many things I linked up with xD all this while traveling too!), but I’m so glad to see you back, even just this once. Must mean you’re feeling at least a little better, which also makes me glad.

    Foam beds are the best! I have a sensitive back, and while I can sleep on most hard beds, I can’t work on a laptop on most of those. But I can do that on a foam bed! So that says a lot. Really hope you’ll reap the benefits of having a bed like that. With sore joints, it’s gotta be like a godsend. Happy you risked the gamble and got it.

    And hey, cute and fluffy is probably better for us people struggling with our health. We don’t need stuff dragging us down, then emotional balance can be tough as it is. Years ago, I’ve made a conscious choice to just stop listening to sad music, for example. It’s just easier to deal 🙂

    1. Kristen Burns

      Yep! And thanks 🙂

      Ah, they really are the best! I never use my computer on my bed, but I just like sleeping and laying down to read my kindle on mine lol. I’m glad I took the risk too (but I also did research and read a crap ton of reviews before purchasing lol).

      Actually I normally like dark, intense kinda stuff, just not the depressing, grief/death stuff. Fluffy stuff doesn’t suck me in as much, and sometimes I just get aggravated like, “STOP OVERREACTING BECAUSE YOU’RE NOT SURE THE HOT GUY HAS FEELINGS FOR YOU I HAVE REAL PROBLEMS SCREW YOU.” Lol. But it depends. Like, if I’m struggling a lot with my illness at the moment, either mentally or physically, I’m not gonna read about a character with an illness during that time. I like sad music sometimes though because I find it kind of cathartic.

  18. Melissa Hopp

    Lots of great books. I haven’t done an update in months either…I’ve been really not on the blogging train this summer. Glad your move is over…hope you are able to settle in despite not be 100% about the situation.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Yeah I’ve still been blogging, but just less in the past few months because of things going on. We’re allowed to take breaks from updates or any other types of posts though! Thanks 🙂

  19. S. J. Pajonas

    Wow. Lots of stuff happened this past month and it’s good to see you back. I was a little behind on blog reading this week due to the start of school, so I’m WAY down in these comments. Lol. The 27 Hours books look good so I’ll have to check them out. Maybe it’ll hook me in! Glad the new bed is working out. We also got a new mattress and I’m sleeping much better now. So grateful for it.

  20. Jessica

    I have been having strange dreams too lately. Two of them were about my uncle who died a few years ago. One was where he was stung up by cords over a table. The other one was that he was in a wheelchair that was like a recliner. A woman wanted that wheelchair, but he won’t let her have it.
    I had been catching up on some books that I have been meaning to read and read some adventure books by Tim Lahaye. It’s sad that he died and he won’t be able to continue that adventure books. I just read another Steve Berry book. I hope to do a book to movie marathon (watching one movie every Monday) soon. I wish Overdrive would speed up on some books. I have been waiting on the first book of the Dark Tower series for months now.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Sorry about your strange dreams :-/ I only tend to share the funny, short ones here, but I have some that are stranger as well.

      I hope your movie marathon went well if you got to do it!

  21. Di @ Book Reviews by Di

    Kristen! Trying to catch up with everything and I really wanted to check in on your life in general so I’m so pleased to find an update!

    I’m glad you finally got to make the move instead of being in limbo all the time, although I’m sorry it kinda sucks. I hope everything is resolved soon.

    Queen beds are awesome. 🙂

    I’m glad you’ve mostly been enjoying your books and I think it’s okay to DNF – don’t force yourself to finish something you know you don’t like!

    I hope to catch up properly soon but for now I’m scrabbling to comment back and reply!

    Keep well and hopefully can chat soon!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thank you <3 I'm still stressed about things here, but I'm also glad to just be done with the moving and out of that limbo. Queen beds really are awesome though!

      I just have issues with DNFing. I always worry it'll get better, I still wonder about things, I feel like the time I spent reading so far was wasted... but on rare occasion I find myself really just not caring at all and the DNF is for the best!

      Thank you, same to you!