Nerdy 30 Quarterly Review 3: Activities

We are 75% of the way done my Nerdy 30! What progress have I made?

  • Participate in at least one read-a-thon – Emojiathon
  • Listen to a new podcast about books – Modern Mrs. Darcy
  • Give away a long time TBR resident – FBI memoir
  • Read 6 books that have been sitting unread on my shelf for too long – Wrapped in July
  • Donate to a bookish charity
  • Visit a famous library
  • Attend a book themed party – Library ball
  • Read the rainbow – June for Pride
  • Shop in an indie bookstore – Kramer’s after the Women’s March
  • Be read to
  • Create a book tag – Halestorm
  • Only read from home for a 3 weeks – March 6-27
  • Only read from the library for 3 weeks – April 2-23
  • Only read from my Kindle & computer for 3 weeks – August
  • Only reread books for 3 weeks
  • Dress bookishly for a week – January 10 – 16
  • Read a banned book
  • Attend an event at the library – Late Night Recess
  • Read a book by an author from a country I’ve never imagined visiting
  • Sign up for a book box – Moth Box
  • Post an elaborate bookstagram – Earth Day with adventure books
  • Read a book for a holiday
  • Read the book, see the movie, debate – The Girl with All the Gifts
  • Color
  • Attend a bookish event
  • Do at least one book purge – Of 40+ books
  • Smell a book – Winnie the Pooh
  • Make a bookish playlist
  • Use a TBR jar
  • Chosen for me

I completed the ereads in spirit reading a few more than usual. I attended and incredibly fun event at the library. I debated the merits of which version of Girl with All the Gifts was better (the book, always the book).

I have started some of these activities and I’ll hopefully finish them in time. As for everything else, I have no idea. I’m just trying to get through the days at this point. Checking off a list is not my main priority.

Nerdy 30 Quarterly Review 3: Books

It’s that time again. Once again I’m highlighting my latest accomplishments.

The Months

  • January: Weight Loss and/or Human Trafficking – Stranger Here
  • February: African American History Month – Negroland
  • March: Women’s History Month – Bad Girls throughout History
  • April: Autism Awareness MonthOn the Edge of Gone
  • May: Asian Pacific Heritage Month – Back to the Grind
  • June: LGBT+ Pride MonthSuck Less
  • July: National Wilderness Month (borrowed from Sept) – Hikertrash
  • August: Mental Health Awareness (borrowed from May) – The Glass Castle
  • September: Hispanic Heritage Month
  • October: Disability Awareness Month
  • November: Native American Heritage Month
  • December: Non-Christian Faith/Culture

Hikertrash was an honest tale of the challenges and beauty of thru-hiking the (in)famous PCT. It was an interesting read but not my new favorite thing. 3/5 The Glass Castle was pretty incredible. 4/4

Unfortunately, September’s read just didn’t happen. I ran out of time since getting married and having my life essentially go to Hell was a little preoccupying. IDK how much reading I’ll be getting done in the near-ish future.

 The Pairs

  • Big Name Press – The Nest
  • Indie PressCautionary Fables and Fairy Tales
  • OldNight Music
  • New – The Handsworth Times
  • Short – Springtime: A Ghost Story
  • LongThe Chemist
  • Near –  The Day of the Donald
  • Far –
  • Fiction – Brimstone Angels
  • Nonfiction – The Big Tiny

An interesting, if slightly underwhelming journey through the world of D&D. 3.5/5


  • Award winner/nominee – The Underground Railroad
  • Recommendation – NPCs
  • Celebrity –
  • Translation –
  • Non-western mythology and/or fairy tale – Cautionary Fables and Fairytales: Africa
  • Genre I typically avoid – Barons of the Beltway
  • Library book – The Trees
  • Book from a TV show –

Africa was a fantastic graphic anthology that gave new spins on old African folktales. 5/5

Will I finish everything left on the list? Probably not. Am I OK with that? Yes. I kind of have to be. I set lofty goals and life had other plans than smooth sailing. I have no idea what I’ll manage to get done by the end of the year but I’m not overly optimistic.

Found in Translation

Multiple studies have shown that reading fiction increases empathy. It helps us better understand the world from another person’s point of view. Given the anti-immigrant backlash and rise of Nazism, seeing the world through another’s eyes couldn’t be more important.

I was listening to a recent episode of Reading Glasses that talked about translated fiction and how it creates such a small portion of the literary market in America. Much like a queer main character or black female author, it’s not that easy to find. It’s why translation featured on so many annual reading challenges.

Fortunately, there are resources to help all sorts of book loves broaden their horizons. A quick Google search lead me to a list from the New York Times, GoodReads, The Guardian, and The Independent. There is an entire website dedicated to speculative fiction in translation. The resources are a bit smaller for nonfiction but there’s still plenty out there.

In these tumultuous times, it’s easy to forget the world doesn’t stop at our borders. But there are natural disasters, genocide, and famine happening while Trump tweets. We can’t afford to stop expanding our minds and horizons.

Halloween Read-a-thon

It’s been well established I’m not great at read-a-thons. I had one I was sure I’d nail and life was like “Lol, nope.” What’s nice about Wonderless Reviews Halloween Read-a-thon is that participation is all that matters. Don’t complete the challenges? That’s OK. However, you can double or triple up on books to make it easier to meet the challenges. You can also change your TBR at any time.

I want to spend my October reading creepy books that match Halloween because I need some fun or I’ll start look to Patrick Bateman as a role model. All of the art is taken directly from Wonderless’s original post.


Carnivale of Horror edited by Marie O’Regan
A beautiful naked hardback with horror stories that focus on carnivals. Yes please!


Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett
I’ve been meaning to reread this for ages and it’s about angels, demons, the anti-Christ, and the end of the world.


Porkpie Hat by Peter Straub
A Halloween themed horror novella I got in the Nocturnal Reader’s box I’ve been saving for the season.


This will be a TBD graphic novel. Likely Calla Cthulhu by Evan Dorkin but I’m not sure yet.


I love creepy movies this time of year so it’s just a matter of picking which one to watch.


I’ll double up with Good Omens since I’ve been meaning to reread it for ages and haven’t.


This one is almost definitely not happening. I’m OK with that.


Music Monday: Carnival

And so begins the Halloween music Mondays. Today, we open with the much macabre carnival

Welcome to the Carnival by Midnight Syndicate
Carnival Noir by Cauda Pavonis
Carousel by Melanie Martinez
Dark Carnivale by Frenchy and the Punk
Something Wicked by Vernian Process
The Greatest Show Unearthed by Creature Feature
Circus for Psychos by Skillet
Spellbound by Nox Arcana
Carnival of Lost Souls by Marc Jungermann
Creepy Clown Symphony by Myuu
Circus at the End of the World by Abney Park


The I Suck at Read-a-thons read-a-thon is over. How did I do? I didn’t finish this one either.

Read 10 pages/20 minutes
I’m combining these two since I usually do both together, if not a bit more. It was going well until Thursday. I spent my morning train ride writing descriptions of stuff to sell online. Before I left work, I found out my dog died via a very short email from my mother. I haven’t been able to make my brain wrap itself around words since.

Smallest Book
Bikes in Space Vol. 2 is my shortest and littlest book. I’d already started it from a previous read-a-thon so I finished it for this one. I was going to finish it last night. That didn’t happen.

Graphic Novel – The Little World of Liz Climo
I skipped SPX and will be skipping another local comic con so I think finding this 50% off at a sidewalk sale is my reward. It was sweet, delightful, and just a tiny bit dark. I loved it. 5/5

Finish a book
I finished Liz Climo.

This was fun and, under normal circumstances, I would have finished and done well. However, my dog dying was just one of a remarkable number of things that have gone to Hell in a lovely gift wrap in the last 2 months. I hope ISATRAT happens again when I am in the head space to fully participate.

The Autumn Reading Tag

With autumn upon us and cool fall weather due any day now, this seemed like a good tag for Tag Tuesday.

1) Are there any books you plan on reading over the Autumn season?
The Vanishing by Wendy Webb, Carnivale of Horror edited by Marie O’Regan, Silence by Tim Lebbon, Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett, What Happened by Hillary Clinton and Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho. Will I get to all of these? No but it will be fun trying.

2) September brings back to school memories: what book did you most enjoy studying? And what were your favorite and least favorite school subjects?
I enjoyed English and most of my culture studies classes in college. I was never a big fan of math and science because I never had great teachers save 9th grade algebra.

3) October means Halloween: do you enjoy scary books and films? If so what are some of your favorites?
I used to hate horror movies but I’m warming to certain kinds. I used to be a huge weenie about them and now I’ve gotten FHubs hooked on AHS. My favorite scary films are Trick r’ Treat, Urban Legend, Sleepy Hollow, and Identity.

I love creepy books. I haven’t read Autumn Cthulhu but it sounds pretty perfect for this time of year. Other books I’d recommend are In the Dark edited by Rachel Deering, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, Bird Box by Josh Malerman, The Gates by John Connolly, Halloween by Sarah Guran, and October Dreams by Ricahrd Chizmar

4) With November it’s time for bonfire night & firework displays. What’s the most exciting book you’ve read that really kept you gripped?
The Rook by Daniel O’Malley. It’s not a particularly fall book but I was just hooked from the first line.

5) What book is your favorite cozy comfort read?
Pride and Prejudice. There’s something cozy and familiar about it to me.

6) Curled up with a good book, what is your hot drink of choice?
Tea if I’m under the weather or hot chocolate.

7) Any plans you’re looking forward to over the next few months?
Getting married is featuring pretty highly on the list, RenFest is always great, and we’ll be visiting some friends to see how their kids have grown and catch up.