August was a fantastic reading month for me in terms of quantity of books. I managed to complete six books, all of which I assigned to various Common Challenges in the August Trope-ical Readathon. While it was a great reading month, I felt a bit overwhelmed for a number of reasons. I had three ARCs to read; one book to read so I could give it back to a relative this weekend; and one book I needed to read before returning it to the library. I also decided to join Jordyn’s Sabriel read-a-long; even though it’s casual, I felt a little stressed to read the first 10 chapters by the end of this week.
Additionally, I dealt with an allergic reaction to a plant, which wasn’t fun. At first I thought it was oak mite bites (an after effect of the presence of periodic cicadas…Google it). Then it got way worse, so I thought it was poison ivy. But that didn’t line up because I hadn’t gardened near poison ivy. After more internet sleuthing I decided it was caused by a hyacinth bulb. Yes, you read right, a hyacinth bulb.
Long story short, I touched the inside of one after accidentally splitting one open. A bulb is quite wet inside, so I wiped my hands off on my upper legs. Big mistake. They, along with many lilies, contain calcium oxalate, a crystal that’s an irritant. So consider this your PSA because it took over 2.5 weeks before the itching went away. It was ugly and looked like poison ivy. Heat set it off, so you can imagine how that felt in Virginia summer time. This meant I couldn’t really exercise because even my elevated body heat activated it. It was maddening. And my skin is still slightly discolored from it all.
With all these things going on, I haven’t felt as inclined to blog this past week, not to mention I’m currently on vacation. I’m really thankful I only have one ARC to read in September. I still feel a bit stressed, though, because one of my current reads has a library holds list. And there’s another book I need to read to help me decide whether to purchase its special edition sequel for a matching set later in September. None of this is big potatoes, but a girl has goals, y’know? Anyway, let’s take a look at how August was for the blog. Enough of my moaning and groaning.
I posted five book reviews in August. From earliest to latest, here they are.
- Four Treasures of the Sky by Jenny Tinghui Zhang
- The Undertaking of Hart and Mercy by Megan Bannen
- The Last Jew of Treblinka by Chil Rajchman
- A Taste of Gold and Iron by Alexandra Rowland
- The Children of Gods and Fighting Men by Shauna Lawless
I also participated in memes throughout August, as I typically do every month. I’m discontinuing listing them here every month, but you can find them in my August archives.
I do want to highlight my post for the August Support Book Bloggers Challenge. Here I compiled a list of some book bloggers who joined the community one year ago or less. Please do check them out and spread the book community love!
Last month I decided to use Google Analytics (GA) as a way to look at my blog’s statistics rather than the WordPress statistics tool. To recap, I devote space in my monthly wrap-ups for statistics because I think it helps put expectations into perspective for other micro-bloggers like me who are out there.
Since July I gained nine followers, to bring my total WordPress followers to 100!! This was my 2022 goal, so thank you SO MUCH to everyone who chose to follow my ramblings. I know there are a lot of bloggers out there to follow, so I appreciate your interest!
My top five posts for unique page views in August were:
- A Taste of Gold and Iron by Alexandra Rowland: 47 views
- The Undertaking of Hart and Mercy by Megan Bannen: 38 views
- Get To Know the Fantasy Reader Book Tag: 35 views
- 2022 Support Book Bloggers Challenge: August Check-In: 31 views
- August 2022 TBR List: 27 views
Lisa at Owl Be Sat Reading started the hashtag #BeatTheBacklog to rally those who want to make a dent in their TBR list. I finished one book that qualifies for this: HOW THE PENGUINS SAVED VERONICA by Hazel Prior.
I improved my ratio a bit in August to 79%. I’m so close to hitting the coveted 80% number. I left feedback for two books last month: A TASTE OF GOLD AND IRON and THE CHILDREN OF GODS AND FIGHTING MEN. I also received rejections for one (possibly two?) book in August: A FIRE ENDLESS by Rebecca Ross and LIES WE SING TO THE SEA by Sarah Underwood. This wasn’t surprising for the former title since I was several months late reviewing the first book in the duology. Oh well! Library to the rescue!
I received one approval, THE DANCE TREE by Kiran Millwood Hargrave. I’m incredibly intrigued by the premise. Lately I’ve been pretty selective with my requests because I don’t want to end up in the deep ARC hole in which I started 2022. I’ve made good progress and I’d like to keep it that way.
How was your August?