Weekly check-in

Sunday, November 20, 2016 Permalink

I’ve had a surprisingly productive week on the book reviewing and blogging front, publishing something every day. Of course if I wasn’t quite as ‘all or nothing’ I would have saved a post or two for coming weeks when apathy will set in. Oh well… moderation schmoderation!

What I read

I started the week with Fearless by Aussie Fiona Higgins. I received an ARC ages ago but it was marked November so I put it aside (on my new shelf which, ummm… keeps my TBR pile looking tidy and out of the way) until someone else reviewed it and I remembered I had it. (Yes, so that project management software I’m using for my book blogging is working well!) #usererror

I then had a couple of nights off in an attempt to catch up on my reviewing, but tossed that plan aside when a bunch of new books arrived… and found myself heading to the bath with Mary Higgins Clark and Alafair Burke to read The Sleeping Beauty Killer.

And finally I read Saul Black’s latest, Love Murder, which was a little predictable but a lot creepy!

What I wrote

I reviewed some books…

Turbo Twenty-Three by Janet Evanovich – an enjoyable outing with bounty hunter Stephanie Plum
While You Were Sleeping by Kathryn Croft – a great psychological thriller about someone who wakes up next to her dead neighbour
The Sleeping Beauty Killer by Mary Higgins Clark and Alafair Burke – another enjoyable read from the talented pair.

And I participated in a Monday link-up with the theme ‘exams’. Of course THANK GOD I’m beyond that point and will never willingly do that crap again, so I instead wrote about the fact I’ve been dreaming about exams of late. And what that might mean.

Because I was on a roll I talked about protein shakes. As you do. Or don’t. At the blogging conference I attended recently it was suggested we revisit a popular post in the hope of devilishly luring more visitors to our site. My most popular post BY FAR is one I wrote about Isowhey protein shakes. Yes, of all things (!!!), over four years ago. And as I’m now regularly partaking in protein shakes I figured I might as well share my extensive knowledge of the stuff. Again.

And then there was a riveting post about happiness and success, and links between the two… not to mention how their meanings change over time.

What I did

I cannot believe that I forgot to tell you last week that I booked my first overseas flights in 14yrs.

For almost a decade I regularly jetted about foreign lands and (indeed) lived in a few different countries during that time. And then I stopped travelling. I’ve only been on a plane a few times in the last decade and had little desire to travel. However… my bestie from way back in my Uni days has been living in New Zealand for 6 or more years and I’ve long promised to visit. So I’ve finally ordered a passport (mine expired years ago) and I’m heading over to Christchurch for a 4-5 day trip in early-mid December.

Of course no sooner than I’d booked my flights, they had yet another earthquake…. #eek

I finally finished watching Luke Cage on Netflix last week and I hafta say… it kinda peaked early and I’m not really sure I’d recommend it. I’m yet to get back to The Crown and then next on my agenda will be Stranger Things. Or The 100. Or Black Mirror. Or Vikings. Or Bloodline. Oh, and of course – next Friday – The Gilmore Girls!

What I plan to do

I had a nine new arrivals last week… although some were surprises which *may* not appeal as much as others. I also received a couple of new eBooks.

I need to add these into my anally chronologically-sorted TBR pile and work out what’s next. (After catching up on the 3-4 reviews I need to write!).

This is a short work week for me, which is great as I’ve got a bit of house-related stuff happening. I’m getting my air-conditioner installed later this week and hopefully my new security screen door. I also need to continue washing the curtains I inherited when I bought the place and hope they don’t continue to disintegrate as a result of the shock. 🙂

And that’s about it for the excitement that is my life. What’s happening in your world? 

As usual I’m linking up with Caffeinated Book Reviewer; and The Book Date for ‘It’s Monday!’

52 Comments
  • MyBlissPoint
    November 20, 2016

    I’m so excited for Gilmore Girls!!

    • Debbish
      November 20, 2016

      Me too. I must find out when they’re available here in Australia – supposedly 25th but I’d be surprised if it’s out here before it’s out in the US! (And we’re ahead time-wise!)

  • Amy Andrews
    November 20, 2016

    I’m excited for Gilmore Girls too. And I can highly recommend Bloodline. Uncomfortable at times for me to watch as there were some serious echoes with my own family but I found it utterly compelling too.

    • Debbish
      November 20, 2016

      Oh, I’ve heard good things about it Amy, but did I read that it hasn’t been renewed? (Or am I getting it mixed up with something else!)

      • Amy Andrews
        November 20, 2016

        It’s apparently been renewed for a 3rd season. I googled it because the last ep was such a clifhanger!!

        • Debbish
          November 21, 2016

          Oh cool. I’m obviously thinking of something different then! 🙂

  • Stormi D Johnson
    November 20, 2016

    Sounds like you had a busy reading and blogging week! 🙂 You have some good ones to read coming up there and I can’t wait to see what you think of them! 🙂 Happy reading!

    Hope those earthquakes are done by the time you go to NZ!
    Stormi

    • Debbish
      November 20, 2016

      I know Stormi! I’ve been through a few small earthquakes when I’ve visited Pacific Islands and then a couple here, but nothing major. Hopefully everything is settled by the time I visit!

  • Laurel-Rain Snow
    November 20, 2016

    I know that I had heard about the new Mary Higgins Clark/Alafair Burke book a while back, and then forgot. I missed it! Well, of course it’s not too late. It’s not like they’ll run out, lol. But I do like downloading on the release date, if I’m buying.

    When I got the first one in that series, it was my First Book of the Year in 2015, and I followed up the following year with the second one. Maybe I’ll download this one now…and not read it until January 1. Hmm.

    I’m also curious about Fearless.

    Let’s binge on Gilmore Girls and enjoy our books, too. I tend to do one or the other. Thanks for sharing, and for visiting my blog.

    • Debbish
      November 20, 2016

      Yes, am hoping this week is a good TV AND book week Laurel! Sounds fabulously frivolous!!!

  • Greg Hill
    November 20, 2016

    Love Murder looks creepy. And I keep seeing While You Were Sleeping around, and with me being in a thriller mood lately I may have to get that. Plus I’m always a sucker for the “Can’t remember, what really happened” plots lol. Glad you had a good blogging week.

    Yay for your trip! Hopefully no earthquakes for a while- that one they got seemed surprisingly strong. And Luke Cage… yeah I was a bit underwhelmed. Too long for what was there. Stranger things is good but you’d think from all the raves that it’s the best thing ever. It isn’t. I mean don’t get me wrong, it’s good, but it’s not like a religious experience. Now The 100… that’s what I’m talking about. Ha ha although that’s me- to be honest it’s very teen angtsy at first, you gotta soldier through, but it has its moments once it gets going. Bloodline I like- almost noirish. Vikings I keep hearing everyone says watch, but the first few I tried were meh.

    Anywayy…. have a great week. 🙂

    • Debbish
      November 20, 2016

      I’ve seen the first two seasons of The 100 (and missed the next)… And I think I watched 3 seasons of The Vikings on DVD before my local Blockbuster closed. I have to admit I don’t know what Stranger Things is even about but keep hearing about it.

      And yes, Luke Cage started with a bang but fizzled out. I took weeks to get back to it and probably could have stopped half-way through!

  • Michelle Weaver (@pinkypoinker)
    November 20, 2016

    We watched all the Black Mirror episodes and it was all brilliant. Very disturbing but brilliant. I’m NEVER saying anything mean about ANYONE on the Internet again. Look out for the one about drone bees!

    • Debbish
      November 20, 2016

      Oh okay, I don’t know much about it Michelle, but I’m even more intrigued now!

  • Maree
    November 20, 2016

    You’ll be in my neck of the woods! Sort of – lol. I live waaaay down South. I just finished Stranger Things, really enjoyed it. The Crown is definitely on my to-watch list. Have a great week!

    • Debbish
      November 20, 2016

      Hopefully you fared okay in the (most recent) earthquake Maree. A blogging friend of mine Jo was down south (doing Milford Sound tramp) and didn’t feel a thing.

  • Kristen @ Metaphors and Moonlight
    November 20, 2016

    Lol about the curtains. I actually just got legit curtains for my bedroom, but I figured I’d save that [not so] exciting news for next week’s Sunday post since I had enough this week.

    That’s awesome that you’re going to get to see your friend! I’ve never even been on a plane at all. I’m sure that’ll be a fun trip though 🙂

    Enjoy your new books and have a great week!

    • Debbish
      November 21, 2016

      Thanks Kristen and the curtain thing was funny as the sheer curtains in the living space were a bit mouldy so I figured they needed a good wash but some just disintegrated completely. I need to have a bit of a rethink re the rest of the curtains and blinds etc…

  • Emma
    November 20, 2016

    Every post I’ve read this week shows people being a lot more productive than me (though I was ill so I have an excuse). It’s funny I think what end up being your most popular posts. Mine is for a book I slated, which kind of makes me feel bad.

    • Debbish
      November 21, 2016

      Oh yes… I was like that about a Paulo Coelho book that seemed to get lots of likes on Goodreads! And never fear on the productivity front cos I’ve got barely anything in mind for this week – unless I catch up on my reviewing!

  • sjhigbee
    November 20, 2016

    It’s certainly been a good week for you, Debs. I read your article about protein shakes with interest as I became vegetarian about this time last year and am heartily fed up with many of the meat replacement foods – especially quorn. My tummy isn’t too thrilled about nuts, although I love them, so I’m considering having a protein shake, though it can’t be whey as I’m dairy intolerant. I found your article really helpful and informative – the more so as you weren’t in ad-mode, but discussing realistically how they have helped you. Have a great week. As for the most popular post – you won’t believe mine… My review of The History of the World in 101/2 Chapters by Julian Barnes! And each year it continues to get more views than ANYTHING else I’ve published by a mile… Have a great week:)

    • Debbish
      November 21, 2016

      It’s weird what’s popular isn’t it?! The thing about the original Isowhey post (which was a result of getting the free samples) was that it was very detailed, but I didn’t lose any weight on it then. It stopped me from gaining however, which I did as soon as I moved! I’ve now lost about 32kg and am almost back to what I was when I moved here (made my seachange!) 4years ago!

  • Lampshade Reader
    November 21, 2016

    Pretty cool that you are going to NZ. I’ve never been anywhere overseas, except in my dreams lol I keep a spreadsheet of the ARCs I need to read with the “read by date” next to the title. It’s a lot easier for me to keep track of them that way. Hope you have a great week! ~Aleen

    • Debbish
      November 21, 2016

      Thanks Aleen, I use this program called Trello (I blogged about it once) which is very simple and free and allows me to move these little cards from my ‘TBR’ pile to ‘Reading’ to ‘Reviewing’ etc… and I can drag them in order. But… I need to make the time to sit and add new books in and that’s where I’ve fallen over recently. The new books are sitting in random piles around my house!

  • Literary Feline
    November 21, 2016

    I am glad you have had a productive week in blogging! I haven’t had much time for the computer (other than work) as of late, but found a window of time on Friday to finally do some major catching up (scheduling posts and creating skeletons for future posts. I’m two weeks ahead right now, which is a great feeling. Now if only it will last! Of course, all this blogging has taken me away from my reading, which I need to get back to.

    I’m with you on Luke Cage. I liked it quite a bit in the beginning, but, as you said, it peaked early and kind of fizzled after that. I did like it better than Daredevil though.

    I hope you have a wonderful trip to New Zealand. I have never been overseas. Maybe someday.

    Have a great week, Deborah!

    • Debbish
      November 21, 2016

      I have to admit I’d hoped I’d started one of the reviews I’m due to post this week as I’m a bit like you in that sometimes I’ll stick in the skeleton of a post and add to it later, but alas… there’s nothing in the post other than a placeholder title! I’m gonna have to re-skim the ebook to remind myself of what happened as I read it weeks ago!

      I’m not going to worry about Daredevil I think. I’ll stick to Jessica Jones and wait for the next season of that – one superhero at a timer perhaps! 😉

  • Kathryn
    November 21, 2016

    Hmm my curtains didn’t like being washed but I still went ahead, few little holes but don’t really see them and I am intending to replace soon. All the best for your trip to Chch. So far the earthquakes have been more of a nuisance further north so most likely you will be okay. I always enjoy my trips to Australia when I do them.
    Lots of books there, you sure get through quite a few. Fast reader!?

    • Debbish
      November 21, 2016

      I am a pretty fast reader Kathryn and skim more than I probably should, but make myself take nights off as well so tend to average three / week so I can keep up.

      I’ve only been to NZ once – in 1999 – to Queenstown for a few days. We flew into Christchurch though and drove to and fro to do some sightseeing on the way.

  • Di @ Book Reviews by Di
    November 21, 2016

    Yay for getting your passport again! I hope you are looking forward to your trip! How exciting.

    Glad you had such a great week on the blog – I’ve been trying my hardest to get some blogging ahead done but… Well, I probably have one or two posts done ahead of schedule! Better than none I guess!

    I’m going to have to try catch up on TV one day… It seems I can’t blog, read AND keep up with the series. I only have x amount of spare time! 😉

    Hope you have another successful week this week! Enjoy!

    • Debbish
      November 21, 2016

      I’m a bit the same on the blogging / writing / TV front. I used to watch A LOT of TV and binge on weekends when I worked full time though don’t tend to do that any more. I usually only watched taped stuff in a very ‘directed’ way at night… ie. I have 1hr so I’ll watch X and fast forward the ads. Of course if I’m forcing myself to have a break from reading (because I’m behind in my reviews) I’ll occasionally watch a few hours at once.

  • Rita @ View From My Books
    November 21, 2016

    Nice blogging and writing week for you 🙂

    Yay, congrats, on booking your overseas trip! I would love to visit Christchurch area and now they had an earthquake but my friend Kathryn lives near Wellington and said they did okay there, except for shaking all night. I don’t like planes since 9/11, I don’t trust the security system in place which seems to every so often have a blip in its “fail-safe” procedures which are thankfully caught in time. I had to fly last year cross country from CA to FL to visit my daughter and her family, but I was so glad I made the choice to go!

    So many books you have there, and many look just like my type: the ones from Meyer, Croft, Higgins Clark, Evanovich, and Burke… thanks for a gentle reminder to go seek some of these titles out 🙂 Enjoy your week, your work, and your reading!

    • Debbish
      November 21, 2016

      I’m also probably a bit ‘meh’ about flying etc nowadays Rita. I once travelled a lot – though mostly for work rather than holidays, whereas now I’m happy to stay put. I think there’s a gene or something as neither of my parents had any desire to travel and my mother’s still the same now.

  • adventureswithabooknerd
    November 21, 2016

    I am super excited for Gilmore Girls! It’s going to be really fun. It’s so exciting that you’re traveling next month! That will be a ton of fun (even if there’s an earthquake). Have a fabulous week! 🙂

    • Debbish
      November 21, 2016

      I’m arranging to watch Gilmore Girls with a couple of friends, so we just need to coordinate a time…. which may be the hard part.

  • admin
    November 21, 2016

    The Sleeping Beauty Killer sounds so intriguing. I hope you enjoy it! The Caller sounds like an amazing read too.

    My It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? post.

    • Debbish
      November 22, 2016

      I’ve read The Sleeping Beauty Killer now and did enjoy it. Am looking forward to The Caller but think it’ll need to wait for a few weeks as I’ve got some other books getting published earlier. So many books, so little time! 😉

  • Janet Camilleri (@middleagedmama1)
    November 21, 2016

    Christchurch will be great, though it is sad to see the after effects of the big quakes about 5 years ago. We have just finished watching a series called The Paradise on Netflix, loved it!

    • Debbish
      November 22, 2016

      Is The Paradise about an English department store Janet? I watched something similar on ABC ages ago and think it was repeated on a commercial station (like GEM or 7TWO) recently.

  • readerbuzz
    November 21, 2016

    My friend (who is one of my crazier sorts of friends) booked a trip to NZ with her husband and two granddaughters the year the two girls graduated from high school. They are all huge fans of The Hobbit. Quite a time they had.

    • Debbish
      November 22, 2016

      Ah yes I’ve seen some pics of my niece with the Hobbit house. I’m not a huge LOTR / Hobbit fan, though am a fan of Richard Armitage who was in the movies! 😉

  • Jane the Raincity Librarian
    November 22, 2016

    It’s pretty hilarious that your most popular post to date is about protein shakes! 🙂 Poor little NZ, more earthquakes! I haven’t been back in years (about six years, actually!), so I’m pretty jealous, enjoy your trip!!

    • Debbish
      November 22, 2016

      I’ve only been to NZ once, back in 1999 or so. I won’t see a lot this time either but that’s okay as I’m mainly going to catch up with my friend.

  • reviewsbylola
    November 22, 2016

    Waking up next to your dead neighbor sounds creepy af. I am definitely interested in that one!

    • Debbish
      November 22, 2016

      Oh yes and did I mention she was naked?!!!

  • Jess
    November 22, 2016

    Some how I have missed so many posts! Protein shakes and happiness posts, I love your life posts! Too funny! Moving has put me behind on everything!!

    • Debbish
      November 22, 2016

      Ah yes, I can relate to that Jess, and you’ve got the girls on top of all of that!

  • Nise' (Under the Boardwalk)
    November 22, 2016

    My son and daughter-in-law washed the curtains that were left on their windows and they all fell apart too. So we’ve been curtain/shade shopping. Not a whole lot of fun, but a necessity if they want any privacy! I am wanting to read quite a few of the books on your stack. Your upcoming trip sounds exciting. Have a great week.

    • Debbish
      November 22, 2016

      Thanks Nise. I probably need to work out what I’m going to put where in terms of curtains and window dressings. Thankfully the previous owner used very plain colours, so even though the fabric of some of the curtains is very heavy and not to my taste, they’re mostly very beige and blend in with anything. (If you don’t look too closely at the mould and dirt!)

  • Amanda Barrett
    November 22, 2016

    Oh, the Gilmore girls are now only a few days away, do enjoy!

    I bought myself a copy of Fearless as I enjoyed Fiona Higgins last novel, Wife on the Run. I hope to get to it soon. I will have to check back for your review 🙂

    The Saul Black novel sounds as creepy as his last, it was very dark!

    You incoming reads pile looks fantastic – book envy is happening my way, lol!

    Enjoy your books and I hope you are having a lovely week.

    • Debbish
      November 23, 2016

      The Saul Black is a bit creepy. Well, a bit graphic I guess… which reminds me I really must get that review done!

  • Grace @ Rebel Mommy Book Blog
    November 23, 2016

    Oh how fun traveling again. Hopefully no more earthquakes!!! I am super excited for the GG revival. I have big plans to watch it all before I can be spoiled on anything. Have a great week!

    • Debbish
      November 23, 2016

      I think there’s been at least one more earthquake (or several) in NZ since I wrote my post. Perhaps I can convince my friend to come out here (again) instead!!!! 😉

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