Friday, July 4, 2014

Update:: Audiobooks Are Awesome (Recommendations?) + Life

Helloooo, everyone! How are y'all?

I'm doing fine. I'm still around despite my less frequent posts. It was my hope that I'd have some reviews squared away before I had moved because I knew that I'd struggle to balance my free time but alas. No such luck. I am struggling with balancing time. I can no longer drive everywhere the way I did in California, which sometimes saved time and sometimes didn't. My commute to and from work, round-trip, is about 1.5 to 2 hours via train and walking. When I want to go to the gym, I walk the two mile round-trip and that's an hour without the workout (I like to stroll. Power walking is not my thing...). When I get home, I'm making dinner or washing dishes or showering because of all the sweat I've released in this gross humidity. I'm struggling to stay awake at night and concentrate. I don't have a desk yet because IKEA messed up my bed order, so I feel less productive in this half-assembled room. It's not organized and so then I don't feel that necessary connection to get things done, which is bad because I have other work I'd like to do as well. And it turns out, I have a clean obsession somewhere in me (I'm turning into my mother AHHHHH (but my mother is awesome, so whatever)). I'm pretty messy in my room, but I'm diligent about the kitchen and dishes and the bathroom and I already know I'll be cleaning things if not every day, every weekend. I live with two guys, one of whom is not here yet, and unless he's also clean, which seems unlikely given what I've observed of men from my brothers and college spiblings, it'll probably get worse soon.

The good thing is.... this made me realize how awesome audiobooks are.


In California, unless I went to work, which I stopped doing after a while, working from home instead, I didn't have very long commutes, so it never felt quite worth it to listen to the audiobooks. I had also convinced myself that I couldn't concentrate on a book while I was exercising, but lies. What lies! I now listen to audiobooks on my walk to and from work and the gym. Mostly recently I listened All Our Yesterdays thanks to the audiobooksync program (y'all, free YA title a week in the summer; get on it!). The narrator was pretty good in that one and now I am listening to one of my favorite novels from 2013, but maybe one of my least favorite narrators in, Cruel Beauty. At some point, I'm going to run out of the audiobooks from that program.... so do you have any audiobook recommendations? Any books. Books I have yet to read, books I have read but that are so awesome, they bear rereading. One of my favorite audiobooks is Will Patton's reading of The Raven Boys. Let me know if you have recommendations so that I can request the books at my local library, which has an awesome YA section.

In other book related news, I decorated my room with those glow in the dark stars. Lola and the Boy Next Door is one of my favorite YA novels, and I think? one of the characters used those stars. Maybe not though. I know Lola and Cricket talked about watching the moon and real stars - just can't remember if they had watched the plastic type too ;). I got the idea from some book, if not that one, and I'm quite pleased with the way everything looks. I didn't arrange them in a specific way - mostly I placed them to hide the poster tape stuff and paint nicks from previous tenants. What do you think? Did I do a good job? Do you know which YA book they might have been from?


If I was a less mellow person, I might have snapped at my roommate on one of the first days. We were assembling what I had of my IKEA bed, and I'd been listening to All Our Yesterdays when he came home. I told him I liked to read YA books, and he said something like, "Oh, so like Twilight?" BARWGH.h.h. Okay, so maybe it's a little weird to expect a cognitive neuroscientist to also read and know about YA -- they can't all be as awesome as I am, after all -- but it's a little sad that Twilight is still the representation, in some circles, of YA literature. *Sigh* We were joking about watching and poking fun of the Twilight movies, but I'm not sure I want to reinforce the stereotype of YA in his head by doing that.

If you're missing the blog and bookish rounds overly so, you can still follow cover reveals at my Pinterest. I've been keeping track of them there. It's just getting harder to convince myself to spend all that time trying to catch up on the news and some part of me -- maybe the perfectionist -- won't accept it if I just do one week's worth (rather than trying to catch up). I'm still hoping to get that post done... if I don't, well... there's still a chance of some other awesome book news coming from me maybe soonish to y'all.

Also, Simply Lemonade is the best.

And one last story. Last weekend was my first in New Jersey, and my roommate took me with him to a BBQ with a bunch of his friends. I met an aspiring neuroscientist from the Netherlands who was really, really sweet, but was only there for the summer. He mentioned how Americans seem to be very enthusiastic about a lot of things whereas the Dutch are calmer and steadier... Apparently, when I left, he told my roommate that the hummus I'd brought (aka my first ever attempt at making hummus) was the best hummus he'd ever tasted. Whaaaaaat. I thought that it was pretty salty (I HATE YOU KOSHER SALT), but I'm not going to lie: that compliment was awesome.

Happy 4th, if you live in the US! If not, enjoy the regular day :). We've had thunderstorms the past two days here, and it's supposed to rain into the afternoon. That and my own lack of planning = I'm not entirely sure if I'll be doing anything, but I hope y'all have fun!

And happy reading :). Talk to you soon!

18 comments:

  1. Nice to hear something from you Christina! Audio books haven't worked for me in the past, so I have no recommendations for you :( but perhaps it's fun to get the audio books from Harry Potter? I like what you did with the glow in the dark stars and compliments like that are always great to receive :D

    ReplyDelete
  2. Omg yey audiobooks :D I love Sync so much, I'm still amazed that they just give out free audiobooks every summer *collects them on my comp to listen to someday* So for YA my audiobook recommendation is the Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy and Reboot/Rebel by Amy Tintera since they are both narrated by Khristine Hvam and she is fantabulous! Seraphina was also a great audiobook to listen to. I realize that the title of the blog is Christina Reads YA, but if you ever feel like dipping into adult, the Scott Lynch books are narrated by Michael Paige and they are so amazing!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I love audiobooks. Try Ready Player One read by Wil Wheaton.

    Tanya Patrice
    Girlxoxo.com

    ReplyDelete
  4. It feels like a pain in the butt to have such a long trip to take to and from work, especially when you're ot used to it, but I hope you get used to it soon :) Ha! I'm not a powerwalker eithe. The 2 miles make a great warm-up for legs, I imagine :D Aw, sorry your furniture isn't all there. Heh! It's funny how you're finding yourself to be such a cleaner :D I can totally see how the guys aren't willing to co-operate :D As I told you in tweets, Lauren Fortgang is an audio goddess! It takes time to get used to her voice, but she's an amazing narrator! In addition to the Elemental Assassin series which she totally brings to life in my mind, she's also the narrator for The Selection and The Grisha trilogies and many others :) Aw, your room seems so cute! I don't remember the whole stars stuff in Lola, but Cricket drew them on his hands and they often talked about the stars. A stars-decorated ceiling was in Hopeless by Colleen Hoover though. AND I LOVE YOUR STARS, LOVE! Eh, I hate that Twilight is a YA standard. Okay, I'm not a fangirl anymore and there are a shitload (excuse my French) of better YA books out there, but it's still something people read and love and I loved it once. People should stop bashing it and people should also realize that there are other books in YA than just Twilight >.< I love your cover reveals on Pinterest :) Can't wait for your bookish round post :) Ha! A Netherlands exchange student? And he liked your food? YAY. You did good :) So proud of you moving across the country and doing so well. *hugs you tightly* keep us posted =) <3

    ReplyDelete
  5. GREAT RECOMMENDATION MEL!!! If I'm not mistaken, it's someone really famous who narrates those books (name is somewhere in my memory...), and it's always great to get back into the HP world :D :D.

    ReplyDelete
  6. they are the BEST!! I've been so glad ever since I discovered the program last year, and really I do collect them to listen to on other days (at least the classics; YA I've been steadily getting through :D)... You should listen to the All Our Yesterdays one, or the one I'm listening to right now -- Code Name Verity -- is great! Ooh, so funny you mention Khristine Hvam because I had a friend who complained about her Daughter of Smoke and Bone reading, but I will have to give her a try. I've heard great things about the Seraphina audio and I definitely will listen to it, esp before the 2nd book comes out. And Scott Lynch -- that sounds so familiar. I think those books are on my TBR, so I will give them a shot sometime :D. Thanks so much for the recommendations, Anya!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Thanks for the recommendation, Tanya! Will Wheaton has a great voice, so I bet that audiobook is really awesome :)

    ReplyDelete
  8. No! I love the long trip to and from work. It is different and I like it even if I'm not used to it yet :). Lol the 2 mile walk is a great warm-up; it's uphill too and I'm like, 'can I just consider this my work-out pls?' Hahah it's not that the guys aren't willing to co-operate, it's just that beginning phase where you're trying to figure each other out and now I'm trying to figure myself out, what with the cleaning phase. Oooh, so looking forward to reading from Lauren Fortgang! Hmm, it wasn't Hopeless by Colleen Hoover, since I haven't read that yet, and I had a feeling that Lola wasn't the glow in the dark stars book... argh! I will come up with it one day :D. "People should stop bashing it and people should also realize that there are other books in YA than just Twilight >.<" -- true. Though I don't have a problem bashing the movies because the movies... *sigh* and I do the same for the HP ones. And other YA adaptations. :D :D you keep me posted on you too!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Haha, yes. I know it's someone everyone was raving about, but I can't come up with it.. I was thinking in the lines of Jim Dale? Or Stephen Fly something? Haha.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Audio is the BEST! I'd never get to experience all the books I do without it. And thank goodness I discovered my library's audio selection. I was spending way too much on Audible. o_O And SYNC is awesome, too...I've participated for the last three or four years. It's actually what got me to start listening to books in the first place. As for suggestions, well, I think it would be better to email that list because I have tons. Seriously. My favorite two, though, are Maggie Stiefvater's The Scorpio Races and Jandy Nelson's The Sky is Everywhere. Both are so lovely. And then you are absolutely correct in the awesomeness of Will Patton's narration of The Raven Cycle books. Phenomenal. Just phenomenal.

    ReplyDelete
  11. :) Just sent you an email about this! I wasted my first free one on Audible because I didn't know much about audiobooks but now regret that :O. I'm off to the library now to see what else is there vs. on Overdrive.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Yeah! Jim Dale, I think. I saw he also narrates the Night Circus (maybe. Might be wrong) and suddenly the name sounded very, very familiar. I don't think Stephen Fry, though he is British so maybe :O

    ReplyDelete
  13. I know what you mean, but at the same time, you could keep listening to the audiobook while you're on sofa. Depends on what you're doing. I'm now listening to them while I'm doing tasks that require very little brain power, just mining the cog sort of things. I bet the Discovery of Witches series would have a good narrator; it seems pretty popular... and maybe I will listen to The Book of Life on audio soon. I wonder if you'd still hate the Raven Boys audio? Because Will Patton, to me, does such a good job with the story that I can't picture the characters any other way.

    ReplyDelete
  14. It's not YA, but I am absolutely loving the Elizabeth Peters' Amelia Peabody audiobooks (read by Susan O'Malley--must get this reader). Also The Thirteenth Tale read by Jill Tanner and Bianca Amato is fantastic.



    Though I'm not a HUGE Shannon Hale fan, I liked The Goose Girl on audio. If you're up for MG adventure, the Pendragon Adventure by D. J. MacHale has a great reader and I think it's a fun series.



    I haven't listened to it, but Jeremy Irons narrates a version of Lolita and that sounds like an absolutely fabulous match.


    Oh, and are you familiar with Librivox? It's a pretty neat project of a bunch of people recording audio readings of books in the public domain, so they're all free! Elizabeth Klett is my favorite reader on there and I highly recommend her reading of Carmilla (if you don't know what it's about but you like Gothics then don't read any blurbs! Spoilers abound, but trust it's a great book if you like Gothics).

    ReplyDelete
  15. Oh my gosh and how could I forget?! The Hero's Guide books by Christopher Healy are fabulous on audio. Bronson Pinchot narrates and I'm tempted to say I like the audio versions even better than the print.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Ooooooh thank you so much!! I've added all your recs to my request list! I can see myself loving Jeremy Irons's reading too, since I really loved how he'd acted in Beautiful Creatures and duhhh Scar! And I'll be checking out Librivox :D. I remember hearing about it but because I wasn't into audios at the time, shrugged it off... Now I won't make that mistake again.

    ReplyDelete
  17. I wish I liked audiobooks, but I just don't. Part of it is because I have a really short commute. The other part is because I only read one book at a time. So if I'm listening to an audiobook, I have to keep listening, even if I'm not driving or walking, working out, etc. So it feels pretty weird to be sitting on my sofa, listening to an audiobook. I have listened to a few, but I don't have any recommendations because I have not been impressed. I listened to one recently, an Australian actor doing a Boston accent. Um…didn't work. I have heard the Discovery of Witches series has a great narrator, though. ~Pam

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for visiting my blog! Please make sure to indicate your blog name so that I can return the favor later :).

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...