The 24-Hour Read-a-thon! #readathon

readathonIt’s almost time to start the 24 Hour Read-a-thon! Over 800 book bloggers and other book lovers all over the world will be reading as much as they can within 24 hours. Some will read 6 hours, some will try and read the full 24 hours.

Everyone starts at the same time, 12 GMT, which is 2pm for me here in the Netherlands. I do need my sleep, but I will try and read for 16-18 hours.


This is what I’ll be reading from:


Zink by David van Reybrouck – non-fiction
Armada by Ernest Cline – science fiction
Fatty O’Leary’s Dinner Party by Alexander McCall Smith – humor
Day Four by Sarah Lotz – science fiction
Brooklyn by Colm Toibin – historical fiction

Opening Meme

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today? I’m reading from the Netherlands – that’s in Europe (to the right of England, to the left of Germany and above France and Belgium). 
2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to? I’m especially looking forward to Armada. I LOVED Ready Player One by the same author, so this just has to be good! 
3) Which snack are you most looking forward to? I got some Rocky Road (shop-bought, I’m sorry to say) and I’m planning to make guacamole later on.
4) Tell us a little something about yourself! I have my own book editing business so I get to read ALL THE TIME (and I still wanted to join in the readathon – there’s nothing better than that!)
5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? I often get sidetracked by all the social media fun. I’ll try to spend a bit more time actually reading.

After 9 hours I finished my first book

Armada by Ernest Cline (355 pages). It was an OK read, but not half as good as Ready Player One by the same author.

On to my next book: Zink by David van Reybrouck

After 11 hours I finished my second book

Only 63 pages, Zink by David van Reybrouck took me to almost 1 am. The book is finished and now it’s bedtime!

Then I slept for 7 hours and read my third book

Fatty O’Leary’s Dinner Party by Alexander McCall Smith was a fun, short book about an American man in Ireland (174 pages).

My fourth book I finished just after the end of the readathon

Brooklyn by Colm Toibin. A lovely story about an Irish woman moving to America after the Second World War (316 pages).

End of event survey

  1. Which hour was most daunting for youHour 11 – this was 1 am for me. I dropped my book while reading because I kept falling asleep.
  2. Could you list a few high-interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year? Fatty O’Leary’s Dinner Party by Alexander McCall Smith was an easy, quick and fun read that I think many readers would enjoy.

  3. Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next season? No, it’s wel organised.

  4. What do you think worked really well in this year’s Read-a-thon? I liked the Facebook group. Was there one last time? For me, this was the first time I joined in on Facebook as well as Twitter and the blogs.

  5. How many books did you read? Four

  6. What were the names of the books you read?
    Zink by David van Reybrouck
    Armada by Ernest Cline
    Fatty O’Leary’s Dinner Party by Alexander McCall Smith
    Brooklyn by Colm Toibin
  7. Which book did you enjoy most? Fatty O’Leary was the most fun, but I also very much enjoyed Brooklyn.

  8. Which did you enjoy least? Armada was a bit of a disappointment, given that I so much loved Ready Player One by the same writer.

  9. How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again?  Yes! This was my 10th or so readathon and I still enjoy it a lot.


Did you participate? What did you read?

Please leave a link to your starting post so I can easily find you.

Read: A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler

threadThis is my twelfth book of the year. A book for our real-life book group. We haven’t discussed it yet, but I’m very curious what the others will think of this novel. I was in two minds about it.

I’ve read a few books by Anne Tyler, that I  enjoyed, so I had good hopes for this one.

A Spool of Blue Thread is about a family over the course of one generation, in which parents and children grow older and their relationships with each other change. Later in the book, there are several chapters devoted to the generation before them – this made up only a small part of the book.

For me, this was an odd read. The story went quite fast through certain years, then focused on some important events in the family. To some degree, that felt as a summary, rather than a full story. Also, while very interesting and revealing, the chapters about the older generation felt like they were an afterthought.

On the other hand, this book was short-listed for the Man Booker Prize. While I don’t care much about literary prizes, it does suggest this novel is seen as outstanding. I do definitely think the writing was beautiful and I wasn’t bored for one moment. The build-up of the story just…didn’t feel right.

This is what the publisher says: ““It was a beautiful, breezy, yellow-and-green afternoon…” This is how Abby Whitshank always begins the story of how she fell in love with Red that day in July 1959. The Whitshanks are one of those families that radiate togetherness: an indefinable, enviable kind of specialness. But they are also like all families, in that the stories they tell themselves reveal only part of the picture. Abby and Red and their four grown children have accumulated not only tender moments, laughter, and celebrations, but also jealousies, disappointments, and carefully guarded secrets. From Red’s father and mother, newly arrived in Baltimore in the 1920s, to Abby and Red’s grandchildren carrying the family legacy boisterously into the twenty-first century, here are four generations of Whitshanks, their lives unfolding in and around the sprawling, lovingly worn Baltimore house that has always been their anchor.”


First Book of the Year (2016)


Happy New Year!

I’m joining Book Journey’s First Book of the Year event! We’re showing off our first book of the year, and Sheila at Book Journey makes a lovely collage showing all the participants with their books.

My first book of 2016 is Slade House by David Mitchell. He’s one of my favorite authors, and it seemed like a nice book to start the New Year with.


I’m not doing any challenges this coming year, but I thought it might be fun to read through my TBR in alphabetical order (of the title). Since I started with S, my next book would be T, etc. I reserve the right to read more than one book for each letter, though! Shift by Hugh Howey is waving at me, so that may be next.

What are you reading?


Armchair BEA Day 4: Giveaway Time!

ArmchairBEA Logo

 Armchair BEA is for those people who cannot visit Book Expo America but still want to join in the fun. This week, May 27th to 31st, there are celebrations for those who stay at home rather than make it to New York. 

Today, Saturday, we’re all giving away books. Go have a look when you’ve finished entering my giveaway.

What you can win:

The winner can choose one book from this selection, some five-star books that I loved. Click on the covers to go to my reviews of the books.

All the Birds, Singing by Evie WyldThe Third by Abel KeoghArms Wide Open by Tom WinterMind of Winter By Laura Kasischke


I’m going to give one entrant one book (your choice). I’m going to send via Bookdepository, so make sure they deliver to your country (cover may vary).

How to enter:

1. In the comments, let me know what book you’d like to win. Also, let me know what fun things you’re doing (have done) this weekend. I’ll be working most of the time, so let me enjoy reading about your great weekend!

2. If you’d like to tweet about this giveaway, that would be so nice! You’ll get one extra entry if you do. Add the tweet link to your comment (click on Expand under the tweet, and then on Details, copy the link from the Address bar).

3. If you’re holding a giveaway for Armchair BEA yourself, leave the link in the comments, and you’ll get one extra entry. Note: only counts if the giveaway is especially for Armchair BEA, not a giveaway that you happen to run at the same time.

You can get a total of three entries for this giveaway.

Anyone can enter, whether you’re taking part in Armchair BEA or not. You don’t need to be a follower of this blog. On Tuesday June, 2nd, I’ll draw a winner. I will send the winner an email and they have 3 days (72 hours) to reply or a new winner is chosen.


Leave a comment,

then go to Armchair BEA headquarters 

for more giveaways.

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