Bookshelf Roundup 09/12/20: Stacking the Shelves & Recent Reads

Bookshelf Roundup is a feature I do every weekend which fills the role of several blog memes, like Stacking the Shelves where I talk about the new books I’ve added to my library or received for review, as well as It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? where I summarize what I’ve finished reading in the last week and what I’m planning to read soon. Mostly it also serves as a recap post, so sometimes I’ll throw in stuff like reading challenge progress reports, book lists, and other random bookish thoughts or announcements.

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Whew, what a week! As expected, I didn’t get much reading and reviewing done, as I turned most of my attention towards getting my kids through the first week of mandated online classes. While it wasn’t as bad as I thought, and I know we’ll be ironing out a lot of the kinks (especially the technological ones) as time goes on, I’m already sick with worry about what this is going to do to the children of our community. While our teachers have been indefatigable in trying to ensure the best for students, I really think it’s the higher ups in my particular county who have completely dropped the ball on this one. They’ve made virtually no plans, provided a lack of resources and barely any support, leaving the underprivileged and those with learning disabilities behind. I already have a feeling my youngest will need extra help learning to read, and my oldest, who is bright and used to love school has now become unmotivated and is developing this dispassionate attitude towards all her subjects. Even if she can follow along online independently, I’m worried that if don’t insert myself into her education and push her to do more and be more, by the end of the semester it will be too late, even if by some miracle the kids get to go back to in-person classes.

So anyway, that’s the end of my rant. What this means is, expect blog activity to continue to be on the lighter side for the next little while. In the meantime though, here’s a look at some of the new arrivals I’m looking forward to reading, if I can somehow manage to find some free time to myself.

Received for Review

My thanks to the publishers and authors for the following review copies received, and be sure to click the links to their Goodreads pages for more details and full descriptions!

Without a doubt, this amazing haul from the kind folks at Orbit made my entire week! The Doors of Eden by Adrian Tchaikovsky is one I’m really looking forward to, it’s like everything he writes ends up being a winner. The Trials of Koli by M.R. Carey is also a book I’m going to try and check out, after a couple positive reviews I saw recently convinced me to give this series another try even though the first book didn’t blow me away. Next up is The Bone Shard Daughter by Andrea Stewart, which I’m sooooo excited about. I have plans to review is later this month. And finally, Dead Man in A Ditch by Luke Arnold is the sequel to The Last Smile in Sunder City, which really impressed me. I’m looking forward to see what this next installment will bring.

 

      

And here I thought my audiobook haul last week was big, but this week brings an even bigger one. With thanks to Harper Audio, I received Prime Deceptions by Valerie Valdes, which is the sequel to Chilling Effect, as well as a couple YA first-in-a-series titles, The Other Side of the Sky by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner and Crownchasers by Rebecca Coffindaffer.

Courtesy of Hachette Audio, I also picked up a listening copy of The Invention of Sound by Chuck Palahniuk, which should be interesting. The last time I read anything by him was yeeeeaaaars ago. I also couldn’t resist checking out The Woods by Vanessa Savage, after I saw a really cool review of it on my friend Lynn’s blog.

And with huge thanks to Macmillan Audio, I received a treasure trove of awesome new September titles. I simply cannot wait to jump into The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab, one of my most anticipated releases this fall. And even though I’m a bit wary about a lot of YA these days, I’m curious about Fable by Adrienne Young because I loved her debut Sky in the DeepThe Silvered Serpents by Roshani Chokshi, which is the sequel to The Gilded Wolves; and last but not least, White Fox by Sara Faring because it just sounds so creepy and suspenseful.

Reviews

Yellow Jessamine by Caitlin Starling (2 of 5 stars)

This Week’s Reads

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Have you heard of or read any of the books featured this week? What caught your eye? Any new discoveries? I hope you found something interesting for a future read! Let me know what you plan on checking out. Until next time, see you next Roundup!:)

29 Comments on “Bookshelf Roundup 09/12/20: Stacking the Shelves & Recent Reads”

  1. I hear you about thekids Mogsy. Mine are young adults and follow their studies online too and that’s not the best thing! But the younger ones are the ones who suffer and as you said nit everyone is equal. It makes me think of my mom who has known WWII and the school was also disrupted. It’s another kind of war

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    • Yeah it’s hard because the younger ones also need some hand holding in terms of working the technology, whereas I know friends who have older kids in middle school and high school who can pretty much manage by themselves. I’m at my wit’s end, lol!

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  2. Sorry about the schools! My area isn’t doing much better, but we’re pretty much all in person. I don’t have kids, but it sounds like it’s not going great thus far. But I work mostly in after school programs, which have almost entirely been canceled. So… more time for reading? I will try to temper my expectations for your posting schedule. But this past week has been pretty rough already. Hope everything goes… as well as can be expected! Good luck!

    Also, you still read more this week than I did. But if you want, I’ll help you read your book haul this week. 😁 Ummm please?

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    • We didn’t have the choice of in-person, otherwise I think I would have sent my kids back since our county’s numbers are pretty good and our risk is low. We had a great system all prepared for hybrid learning, but all of a sudden they decided not to do it and just went full virtual again, which messed everything up. I am crossing my fingers for things to calm down soon, because I can’t even find the time to listen to my audiobooks! 😛

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  3. I know we were just talking about school on your previous thread.

    The people who can least afford to miss out on education are the ones who are going to be the hardest hit. And their kids will be the ones to suffer in about 10-15 years. Especially when you have so many parents who don’t care 😦

    There are barely enough jobs for those with just highschool diploma’s now (our local super walmart which used to employ lots of younger people now has gone almost fully automated in terms of checking out. and the stockers of shelves are of an ethnic group that I’m sure are being taken advantage of), so in another 10’ish years, that situation is only going to get worse.

    Sorry, I’m not meaning to feed into your fears. But I am acknowledging them as more than just little hiccups in our society.

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    • Yeah, the kids today are going to need more than a high school education to get anywhere in life, once they become young adults. It is definitely worrying, and it’s something I’ve already thought about. The only thing I can do now is keep up their good habits, ensure they have a healthy respect for getting an education, and hope for the best!

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  4. While on-line learning can keep the kids’ education on track (more or less…) I imagine how the lack of companionship, the feeling of being in an isolated bubble – even if they are too young to consciously express such feelings – must prey heavily on their enthusiasm and their willingness to forge on… And the school authorities being AWOL don’t help a bit…

    Book-wise, I am looking forward to Dead Man in a Ditch, and I hope to be able to find space for it on my TBR 🙂

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    • You’re right, I am so glad my kids’ extra curricular activities are still going on, otherwise they would have no social life at all! Also agreed that this is going to affect the emotional health of kids everywhere, already I’m hearing from other parents how the chaos of this year has exacerbated certain anxiety and behavioral issues.

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  5. I‘m glad that my kids are grown up – well, my daughter attends online seminars at the university but that’s quite good. School started a couple of weeks ago, they are in classrooms and everything seems to be fine (that’s Germany). I hope you find your way and don’t leave anyone behind!
    I‘ve read the Tchaikovsky book and the Bone Shard and both were great!
    The Schwab book is currently being read by my daughter and she‘ll write a review. So far she’s liking it!

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    • Good luck to your daughter! I think if they opened up the schools in my area everything would be fine too, but I also understand why they would be afraid to make that call in case anything bad does happen. While it’s fine to be careful though, the fact that the planning was so poor definitely ticks me off, lol! Anyway, looking forward to Doors of Eden and Bone Shard Daughter, those look amazing! Your seal of approval on those just makes me even more excited! 😀

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  6. Ugh. We did the online classes when March break became a 7-month stretch and it was a horrible mess of Google apps and sites that were a nightmare to navigate on a tablet. We decided to send our youngest back to school, and while there’s some anxiety there, he’s needs that environment and that routine.

    No physical ARCs or purchases for me this week, which is fine because I’m actually making some progress on the review pile, but 1 of the 2 digital ARCs is a March 2021 release so lots of time there.

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    • Same thing happened to us in spring, which basically amounted to the teachers uploading their materials and the parents homeschooling their children based off of them. Total nightmare. At least right now they’re trying to do mostly synchronous learning so that the kids actually have some live time with their teachers. I would send my kids back to school too if I had that choice, they are at the age where that socialization and routines are just so important, so I can’t agree with you more there.

      And gah, yes, I need to make some progress with the books I already have right now, and yet my tbr keeps growing!

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  7. Ooh nice new reads! Lots of new to me ones. I hope you enjoy them all!

    My StS will be up tomorrow, so stop by then if you can!

    Have a GREAT day!

    Old Follower 🙂

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  8. Your rant is 100%, a million percent valid. So many of my friends and co-workers are going through the same. everyone is super stressed because they are trying to work AND trying to keep their kids engaged in virtual school AND then making dinner/helping with homework at night. Some of the schools here have an option for in person classes, but the teachers have to teach the kids in the class and the virtual kids at the same time, which is really hard. I know it’s hard for me to pay attention to a virtual or a video training, how are antsy kids supposed to do it?

    book wise, The Bone Shard Daughter by Andrea Stewart looks most interesting to me!

    I’ve dipped into a little bit of YA lately, and for the most part found it not my thing, so I’m wary of YA as well. those books always look so wonderful . . . but alas, usually not for me.

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    • We don’t have any in-person class options at all, otherwise I would probably send my kids because they are at the age where having that structure and socialization is so important! Ugh, I feel for your friends and co-workers because I’m experiencing that right now, and I’m fortunate enough to work from home – I can’t even imagine households where both parents work outside the home, and having to come back from work and take on the role of teacher. I would lose my mind!

      And I hear you about YA – I am so picky nowadays, I don’t want to get pulled into the hype just to end up with a dud! Unfortunately, that happens too much :\

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  9. School is a struggle everywhere, unfortunately. My heart aches for students, teachers and parents, and I’m afraid when all this is over we’ll discover lots of holes in children’s education that may have long lasting effects. Not to mention the mental issues of kids being separated from human interaction, which is so important😥 Hang in there! I’m expecting my Orbit books on Monday, I’m always the last to get them, lol. I just have two coming, The Bone Shard Daughter and The Doors of Eden.

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    • Thanks, Tammy! And I’m fortunate that my kids are doing well in terms of their social and emotional needs, but I have friends whose kids have anxiety or behavior issues that they say have gotten worse since the start of the pandemic. Sigh…I’m just heartsick over it and can’t help but worry 😦

      And hope you receive your books soon! I know they do take a few extra days to ship to the west coast!

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  10. I do worry about how this will affect an entire generation of people, especially children, who’ve had so much less experience to weigh this against. How much of an increase in mental illness, such as anxiety, will we see? I don’t have any answers and don’t think I could have done any better at managing things, but I can’t help but believe things could have been managed so much better. There are folks out there that do these sorts of things, that are good at it, but they don’t seem to be in positions that matter. And what makes me very sad is that there were organizations focused on these sorts of issues that have gradually lost funding or been eliminated over the years because this didn’t happen sooner. It’s so difficult to plan for these “black swan” events because we don’t like seeming to throw money away on things that may never happen. And yet, they do happen, we just don’t know when. Ah well, sorry for the rant. I hope you take all the time you need to work things out and I hope they go as well as they can. I’ll still be around to read your posts as you’re able to write them. 🙂 Looking forward to hearing about The Doors of Eden.

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    • Haha, rant away. I am dealing with similar frustrations when it comes to my county. They’ve frittered away money for years, leaving our schools overloaded and underfunded. In a normal year, we just make do, but this year all that mismanagement has finally come home to roost. And I hear ya about the anxiety in our kids. My friend has a kid who has anxiety issues, and she mentioned how the shutdown has made them worse, as in he has become less independent and more clingy and lost when she’s not around. Things 100% could have been managed better, at least in my area 😦

      And thanks, I’ll definitely keep blogging, when I can! I can’t wait to read The Doors of Eden 😀

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  11. I think the higher ups have dropped the ball in a lot of places. They dilly dallied on what to do and waited to the last minute to make decisions instead of making plans for how to go about school in the age of covid. And the sad thing is the kids will be the ones to pay the price. I hope that school improves next week–hopefully things will settle into a rhythm and get a bit more organized. Good luck!

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    • Thanks! Oh and it’s worse – in my county anyway, not only did they dilly dally, they wasted so much time coming up with a hybrid plan with remote option which would have accommodated a lot more people, only to scrap it all pretty much overnight and decide to go full virtual. Even then they had months to plan, but I swear, less a week before school was to start, we were still getting conflicting information, last minute changes, and no answers. They pretty much put all their eggs in one basket with no backup plan or alternate options. I’m sure you’ve also heard about the shortage of 15,000 chromebooks, and just my luck both my kids are affected, lol. I had to give up my desktop and also scrounge up an old laptop just to make sure they won’t have to learn off packets, because that’s what happened this spring and it was a disaster 😛

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      • That’s all so ridiculous! I know in the city they decided fairly early on what they were going to do and then they’re also partnering with Comcast to provide internet access and they’re also providing tech to students as well if they don’t have it. I know there have been some hiccoughs, nothing is going to go completely smoothly as people figure stuff out, but that ‘let’s wait to the last minute and see what happens’ is just maddening.
        I hope that things get better as it goes along.

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  12. I’ve been wondering about how it’s going with online school for very young kids. I have a friend whose daughter is supposed to start preschool this year, but it’s been a hassle for her to figure out what to do and nerve wracking as well.

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  13. I feel so sorry for children at the moment. We were talking with friends only a few days ago, their little boy is super smart and like a sponge in soaking up new information but he’s missing school and all the interactions so much it’s like he’s becoming totally unmotivated and a little fed up. It’s all very worrying.
    I don’t know how everyone is coping with the added stress really, not to mention doing two jobs.
    Just hang in there.
    Thanks for the mention 😀
    Lynn 😀

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  14. Hang in there, Mogsy! I hope your kids will get used to the online classes and not miss much – except for the social aspect, which is unavoidable. I’m hopeful that this experience will be valuable for them in the long term, but you’re right – right now, they are suffering. Hope your life gets back to normal soon!
    Happy reading!

    Like

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