Armchair Book Expo: Introduction & Best Practices

I’m so happy to be joining Armchair Book Expo again this year. I’m not sure if I’ll be able to ever actually attend a book conference, but this online book event is the next best thing. Starting today through June 4th, bloggers can participate in this online book conference. There are different discussion posts for each day, twitter chats, and giveaways. I believe you can still sign-up, so if you’re interested, head on over to the Armchair Book Expo site here.

For this introductory post, we’re choosing three to five prompts from the official intro questions list. My selections are below.

Currently . . . I am on a contemporary kick. I’ve always considered my favorite genre to be fantasy, but over the past year or so, I’ve gotten more into contemporary books and I can’t get enough.

I love . . . magical realism. It’s hard for me to explain just what it is about this genre that appeals to me so much, but every time I pick up a magical realism novel, I’m filled with such awe.

My favorite . . . books so far this year include Roshani Chokshi’s A Crown of Wishes, Anna-Marie McLemore’s When the Moon Was Ours, and Tiffany D. Jackson’s Allegedly.

My summer plans . . . for the blog include the Summer 2017 Comment Challenge. Lonna @ FLYLēF and I started this challenge last summer as a way to help bloggers connect with one another. We pair bloggers together for one month and encourage them to get to know one another through comments. Stop by my blog on the 3rd to sign up for July.

Best Practices in the Online Book Community: Let’s talk about our best practices within the book community. This can range from time management to the use of social media to even ethical obligations. 

For this prompt I want to talk about my review practices. Besides writing, editing, and scheduling my review posts, I have a set checklist that I go through throughout the day.

  • I make sure to share these reviews on social media (for me that means Twitter, Tumblr, and Google +).
  • I update my Latest Book Reviews widgets and make sure my reviews are listed under author and title.
  • I also cross-post my reviews to Goodreads and Amazon.

I do all these things within a 24 hour period, so I never fall behind. Honestly, it can be a little much and I sometimes elect to skip catching up on comments the same day, but it’s also a practice that I’ve been really consistent with that I don’t really think about, it’s just automatic.

Did you participate in Armchair BEA last year? Will you be taking part in Armchair Book Expo this week? Do you ever cross-post your reviews? Leave a link to your introduction post in the comments!

Armchair BEA 2016: Wrap-Up Post

armchairbeaArmchair BEA is over! This was my first time participating and it was such a great experience. As someone who would have loved to attend BEA in Chicago this year, but was unable to do, this was the next best thing. This definitely will not be the last time I join this fun online event. Let’s take a look at the posts I put together this week.

Day 1: Introduction & Diversity

On our first day, we had a chance to introduce ourselves and answer a few questions including favorite book (Pride and Prejudice) and favorite genre (fantasy). This was also a chance for bloggers to talk about diversity and what we’d like to see more of in the book world. You can read my thoughts here.

Day 2: Aesthetic Concerns

On day two we discussed aesthetic concerns for both books and blogs. Reading through everyone’s posts, it seems most of us are not immune to beautiful covers. I am a sucker for a good cover. Even before you read a synopsis of a book, the cover is the first thing you see and so I think it’s important that a book’s cover be able to grab your attention. Read all my thoughts here.

Day 3: Beyond the Books & Blog

We seem to focus a lot on traditional forms of fiction and our blogs, but on day three we look beyond the books and blog. I talked about my desire to try new forms of fiction, including graphic novels. I’m still looking for suggestions, so share your recs in the comments. Read my full post here.

Day 4: Surviving Fictional Worlds

Day four was probably my favorite day as we discussed what it would be like trying to survive the fictional worlds we read about. I had tons of fun putting this post together. I didn’t have a ton of time to visit other people’s posts for this day, so if you’d still like to leave a link, I’d love to read what you had to say. My post can be found here.

Did you participate in Armchair BEA this year? Is it something you’d like to participate in again? Leave a link to your own wrap-up post and I’ll be sure to visit!

Armchair BEA: Surviving Fictional Worlds

armchairbeaWhat, Armchair BEA is almost over? I can’t believe it! This is our final post before we wrap up everything tomorrow and I’m not ready to say goodbye. I’m really excited about today’s topic, thinking about how we would fit into the fictional worlds we read about is always such an interesting thing to discuss. Covers are linked to Goodreads.

Surviving Fictional Worlds

Today we’ll talk about surviving fictional worlds. We all know that sometimes, the worlds we love in fiction can be dangerous. Which fictional worlds would you want to live in? Which worlds do you never want to dive into? Which worlds are you content to stay behind the glass, so to speak, rather than wishing to dive through the page? And once you get there, what would you do?

I’m going to tackle the obvious and say that I’d love to live in the Wizarding World. The Harry Potter series is such an important part of who I am as a reader. I’ve never loved a series as much as HP and I don’t know if anything will ever compare. I have taken various online quizzes to discover which house I belong to and they all say I’m a Ravenclaw. I love books and discovering new things and truth be told, I’m not as brave as a Gryffindor, as driven as a Slytherin, or as kind as a Hufflepuff.

Beside HP, I also wouldn’t mind being a part of the Raven Cycle world created by Maggie Stiefvater. I have a bit of a love affair with her characters. Blue, Gansey, Ronan, Adam, and Noah are too precious for words and I’d be more than happy to help them search for Glendower. And I know it would be super dangerous, but I would love to be a part of V.E. Schwab’s Shades of Magic series about a magician who can travel to different worlds. Just need to get my hands on a magical coat…

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If you really consider it, most book universes are pretty dangerous. Whether it’s evil rulers, blood-thirsty monsters, or a truly twisted world philosophy, most of our books take place in universes that are very unpleasant and if we’re honest, most of us probably wouldn’t survive. I recently did a Top Ten Tuesday entitled Futuristic Societies I Want No Part Of. Included is Rot & Ruin by Jonathan Maberry. I love zombies. I love zombie books, movies, and tv shows, but I would not want to live in a world where the dead rise and chase after me. No thank you.

How I’d survive: Grab a weapon and start swinging. Kidding. Kind of.

Another fictional world that I’d never want to live in is the Chaos Walking Trilogy by Patrick Ness. The whole concept of this world revolves around the fact that men’s thought are broadcast aloud for the whole world to hear. I do not need this in my life. I get tired of hearing what men think when they can control their own mouths, who knows what I’d hear if it was completely unfiltered.

How I’d survive: Invest in a good pair of noise-canceling headphones.

Another story I would not like to fall into is Barry Lyga’s I Hunt Killers about a boy trying to outrun his father’s legacy as world’s most infamous serial killer. I spent so much time while reading this whole series yelling at the characters because I could not believe some of the decisions they made. It was like watching a horror film and seeing the characters investigate a noise in the basement.

How I’d survive: Get out of town quick.

Which fictional worlds would you like to be part of? Which would you run away from very quickly? How would you survive in a dangerous fictional universe? If you’re participating in Armchair BEA, leave a link to your post and I’ll visit!

Armchair BEA: Beyond the Books & Blog

armchairbeaIt’s Day 3 of Armchair BEA, an online conference for book bloggers not attending BookExpo of America, and today we’re taking a step back from the traditional formats for both books and the blog. Let’s discuss!


Beyond the traditional form of the novel, what are your favorite alternative forms (graphic novels, audiobooks, webcomics, etc)? Do you have any favorite works within these alternate forms? How do you think the changing format affects the reading experience?

This is something that I find really lacking in my own reading life. I basically stick to traditional books. I’m not even a big fan of ebooks. I just find it a lot easier and more delightful to have a physical book in my hands. Right now, my consumption of ebooks is limited to ARCs I get through NetGalley.

I really want to read some graphic novels. I’ve never done it before and there are a few that I’ve heard loads of good things about. I’m not sure what’s holding me back, but a part of me is nervous that I won’t be able to become fully emerge in the story because of the different format. I’m open to suggestions as a newbie to graphic novels, so let me know in the comments what you’d recommend. Here are a few graphic novels I’m considering picking up, if you’ve read them, I’d love to hear what you think. Covers are linked to Goodreads.

Audiobooks is another format I have very little experience with. On one hand, I’d love to hear a story spoken aloud, but I just find that I can read a book faster on my own. There’s also the fact that sometimes the narrator just doesn’t mesh well with you. I do want to try listening to a Neil Gaiman audiobook, since he narrates his own stories.


Our secondary topic, beyond the blog could focus on the ways you engage in talking about books outside of your blog. Do you participate in book clubs, take classes, meticulously maintain your goodreads profile? Let the world know!

I’ve never taken part in a book club before, but I’ve always wanted to. Outside of this blog, I interact and talk books the most on Twitter and Tumblr. I’ve only been on Twitter for a year, but there is so much opportunity for us bookish people. You can connect with other bookworms, publishers, and authors and it’s overall just a great way to be a part of the larger book blogging community. I originally joined Tumblr in order to follow a favorite show, but quickly became immersed in the book blogging side, appropriately called booklr. There are so many wonderful book photographers on Tumblr and I’m convinced it’s the largest book blogging community. I haven’t been as interactive as I used to be, but I still enjoy taking part in book photo challenges and I credit it for making me a better photographer. Feel free to add me on either format!

What formats outside of the traditional book do you enjoy the most? Have any graphic novel suggestions? What’s your favorite audiobook? Which platforms outside of your blog do you have a heavy presence on? If you’re participating in Armchair BEA this week, leave a link to your post and I’ll be sure to visit!