There was a lot of book blogger drama this first month. I'm not going to talk too much about it, there are plenty of posts for that on the internet if you don't know about it, but at this point I think pretty much everyone knows about what went down. I just want to say something about it so I, personally, can move forward.
Since this new year began, I've really been thinking long and hard about how I want to make blogging more fun for me. Because ever since this drama started, I have been stressed out, worried, and it's really put a damper on the fun of blogging for me. I don't think it's any surprise which side I have chosen to take, and because of that I feel slightly at odds with some of my fellow bloggers. It's also why I have stayed off Twitter a lot the past few days. I just really can't take it anymore.
When I write my reviews, I feel like I have a duty to myself and my readers to be completely honest. I write negative reviews, and yes, some of them get fairly mean. But I purchased that book. Or in some cases, was given a free copy in exchange for MY HONEST review. And that's what I do. I can't help my personality or the way my writing comes off to others. And truthfully, if you don't like what I write, don't read it. It really is that simple. I will always be honest and I will always write about how a book made me feel or didn't feel. If it made me angry then you can expect an angry review. That's just me and I won't change it for anyone.
I also write DNF reviews. I rarely post them on my blog. But I do post my thoughts on Goodreads. Just because I have only read 100 pages doesn't mean I don't have an opinion on what I read. There was a reason why I stopped reading, right? And I know for a fact that some of the people that follow me and trust my opinions appreciate my thoughts on books I don't finish. It is very strange to me why people care so much about what other people do or how they write. For instance, I think only writing reviews for books you like is kind of dishonest, but I'm not going to come on your blog or review on Goodreads and harass you for doing so. It's your prerogative. I'm sure you get more ARCs from publishers because of it, and good for you. But I do feel it's kind of selling out. My 2 cents. If someone wants to write a snarky review with GIFs, that is their right. Don't harass them for it. It makes you a troll. And frankly, I think they are hilarious.
When I buy a book and spend my hard-earned money on something, I can say whatever I want in my own space. There's this thing called free speech. And I shouldn't have to worry that I might get hate mail over it. But I know at some point I will. Because it is the internet, and it's inevitable.
Now for my challenge progress. I am participating in the 2012 Debut Author Challenge hosted by The Story Siren.
In the month of January I managed to read one debut author book. Not great, I know, but I have read one more, I just didn't post the review for it yet, and therefore, I'm not counting it yet. It's The Cabinet of Earths by Anne Nesbet.
~The Edumacation of Jay Baker by Jay Clark
I had very strong opinions about The Edumacation of Jay Baker and you can see my review by clicking on the link above.
I'm also participating in the 2012 TBR Pile Reading Challenge hosted by Evie-Bookish and a ton of other bloggers.
So far for this challenge I have completed 4/15 books. This is not the final count of the books I will be reading because it's only February and I have already added to the list numerous times. I'm not going to lie, this challenge is hard work. It is really difficult to find time to read the books on my own shelves. That's why I have cut down on review requests.
~Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
~Five Flavors of Dumb by Antony John
~Cold Blood (Dirty Blood #2) by Heather Hildenbrand
~Base Spirits by Ruth Barrett
Finally, I am participating in the 2012 50 States Reading Challenge hosted by Book Obsessed.
I have managed to complete 3 states so far: New Hampshire, Ohio, and Washington. I just finished a book set in New York, and that review will be up soon, but not yet, so I won't count it now.
~The New Girl by Paige Harbison (New Hampshire)
~The Edumacation of Jay Baker by Jay Clark (Ohio)
~Five Flavors of Dumb by Antony John (Washington)
Again, reviews can be seen by clicking on the links.
For anyone that wants to know, I read a total of 13 books in January. That's not really a great number and I'm not happy. But I have had a ton of work to do this month. There will be catch up time in later months. I hope.
If you have any wrap-up posts you want me to come comment on, please leave links in the comments. I would be more than happy to visit your blog. And if you have any comments on my thoughts about the book blogger drama, feel free to leave those too.