Monday, October 17, 2016

Marathon Monday: Nationwide Children's Hospital Columbus Half Marathon

Sunday October 16th was the Nationwide Children's Hospital Columbus Half and Full Marathon.  It was 60 degrees while we waited at the start and warmed up to the mid 70's for those full marathon runners that took a little longer to finish. It was probably only in the high 60's by the time I finished a little before 10:00 A.M., so I couldn't have asked for a better day.

Here I am with half of my cheering section prior to the race.

The start of the Columbus race is always exciting with fireworks and music to send off the runners.

I saw my "fan club" a couple of miles into the race and again at the 7 mile point.

They were also at the finish, which was quite impressive compared to the last time I ran this race when I never saw anyone until well after I finished.  

Here are my official results:

And of course you have to get the customary post race celebration picture.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Stacking the Shelves: For This Life Only by Stacey Kade

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews.  It is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, be it physical or virtual.  This means you can include books you buy in a physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!

Tynga publishes her post each Saturday, so be sure to link up your posts and check out what books others have added to their shelves that week.

From the Library:

I've actually already started this one and should have a review by the beginning of next week.  I know Stacey is the daughter of a pastor, so I'm sure we are getting a lot of her first hand experience and slang, which has been a lot of fun to read so far.  It is a difficult topic with death/dying, but I'm anxious to see how Jace and his family pull through.

For This Life OnlyGoodreads Overview:

A young man struggles to move forward after the death of his twin brother in this gripping, coming-of-age tale about loss, redemption, love, and the moment you begin to see the world differently.

Three minutes.

Jacob Palmer died for three life-changing minutes.

And when he woke up, nothing was the same. Elijah, his twin brother, is dead, and his family is broken. Jace’s planned future is crushed, along with his pitching arm. Everyone keeps telling him that Eli’s in a better place, but Jace isn’t so sure. Because in those three minutes, there was nothing.

Overwhelmed by guilt and doubt, Jace struggles to adjust to this new version of the world, one without his brother, one without the certainties he once relied on. And then Thera comes into his life.

She’s the last girl he should be turning to for help.

But she’s also the first person to truly see him.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Review: The Partner by John Grisham

The Partner

I was a huge fan of John Grisham's legal thrillers back in high school, but I haven't read many since.  I decided to pick up where I left off and read his 8th book, The Partner, which was released in 1997.  I've heard that some of his never books aren't as good as the originals, but he certainly had his A game when he wrote this novel.

The Partner is about a young attorney in Biloxi, Mississippi named Patrick Lanigan who faked his death to start his life over.  He was in a bad marriage and discovered the partners in his firm were planning on firing him before he could cash in on their corrupt scheme.  He carefully gathered the evidence he needed before staging a car accident and sailing off into the sunset.  The partners of the firm put on a good show at the time of his funeral, but were secretly grateful for their good fortune.  

When the 90 million dollar settlement was wired into the firm's account it immediately went missing.  The firm was supposed to receive 1/3 of the amount (30 million dollars) with the remainder being transferred to their client.  Everyone began to question the circumstances surrounding Patrick's death and the search soon began.

When Patrick is found in Brazil four years later everyone thought he would finally be brought to justice and their stolen money wold be returned.  Little did they know the depths of the research and planning he had done the year before he left as well as while he was on the run.  

I was absolutely amazed by the level of detail.  Everything is woven together seamlessly and I couldn't help but root for Patrick to come out unscathed.  While his actions appeared to be inexcusable on the surface, he managed to have an explanation for everything.  There was always a bigger fish in the sea with regards to every accusation and Patrick had every detail covered.

I was highly entertained and would definitely recommend this book.  There was a shocking twist at the very end that I never would have anticipated.  I guess Grisham didn't want to leave readers with a too good to be true feeling and decided to drop a bomb in the last chapter.  Now I'm curious if there is more to Patrick's story in one of his future novels of if he truly was left hanging in the balance.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Review: The Bronze Key by Cassandra Clare & Holly Black

The Bronze Key (Magisterium,  #3)

The Bronze Key is the third book in the Magisterium series.  Call, Aaron and Tamara are on a quest to uncover who the "spy" is within the Magisterium and why he or she is targeting Call.  The most obvious reason is the fact that he is a Maker, which is someone who specializes in chaos magic.  There are very few Makers in each generation and very little is knows about their form of magic.  As a result, many people are afraid of them or perhaps want to be them.  The students don't believe that is the reason for the threats on Call's life because Aaron is also a Maker and he hasn't been threatened.

Call does have a secret that only his father and closest friends are aware of, which is most likely the reason for the attacks.  They can't share this information with anyone.  Call, Aaron, Tamara and Jasper must work together to solve this mystery on their own.

The conclusion of this book was not at all what I was expecting.  This is a middle grade series, but Holly and Cassandra certainly aren't coddling these characters or their readers.  There is an epic battle as one would expect and the fallout was more than a little shocking.  I have no idea what direction they will take the series next, but it probably leans more to the "Evil Overlord" side of the spectrum.

Overall, this book wasn't as fast paced and gripping as the first two books in the series, but that is often the case with middle books in a series.  Hopefully things will pick up again with book four or I'm afraid they will lose their appeal to younger readers.  I have a sixth grade son that probably would enjoy the first two books in the series, but he would likely struggle to get through this one.  

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Stacking the Shelves: Four to Score by Janet Evanovich

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews.  It is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, be it physical or virtual.  This means you can include books you buy in a physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!

Tynga publishes her post each Saturday, so be sure to link up your posts and check out what books others have added to their shelves that week.

From the Library:

Four to Score by Janet Evanovich - Stephanie Plum #4

Four to Score (Stephanie Plum, #4)Goodreads Overview:

Stephanie Plum, Trenton, New Jersey's favorite pistol-packing, condom-carrying bounty hunter, is back - and on the trail of a revenge-seeking waitress who's skipped bail. With the help of 73-year-old Grandma Mazur, ex-hooker Lula, a transvestite musician named Sally Sweet, and the all-too-hospitable, all-too-sexy Joe Morelli, Stephanie might just catch her woman. Then again, with more mishaps than there are exits on the Jersey Turnpike - including murders, firebombs, and Stephanie's arch-rival bounty hunter chasing after the same fugitive - Stephanie better watch her back big-time if she wants to live to crack this case.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Waiting on Wednesday: The Lunar Chronicles Coloring Book by Marissa Meyer

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking The Spine, which spotlights upcoming releases we are eagerly anticipating.

The Lunar Chronicles Coloring Book by Marissa Meyer
Release Date: December 6, 2016

I love all of my Johanna Basford coloring books.  I am half way through the Lunar Chronicles series and can't wait to see what this coloring book looks like.  I'm sure it will be a great addition to the series!

The Lunar Chronicles Coloring Book

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday: Most Hated Villains From Books I Have Read

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.  Every Tuesday they post a new Top Ten List on something bookish.  Click on the link above if you wish to participate.

Top Seven Most Hated Villains from Books I Have Read

I don't red a lot of books with villains it appears.  I struggled to come up with 7 from by Goodreads read list, so I can't wait to read some of the others that appear on this week's top ten lists.

Valentine from the Mortal Instruments Series
I just finished reading City of Glass last month, so Valentine was fresh in my mind.  He experimented on his unborn children and had no remorse for the physical and mental abuse he subjected them to later in life.  He was only out for personal gain.

City of Glass (The Mortal Instruments, #3)

Maxon's Father (The King) in The Selection Series
He was abusive and manipulative.  

The Selection (The Selection, #1)

Lord Voldemort from the Harry Potter Series

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter, #7)

Vaughn from the Chemical Garden Trilogy
I believe Vaughn's underlying intention of helping his son was admirable, but his methods were not.

Wither (The Chemical Garden, #1)

Dr. Jacobs in the Project Paper Doll Series

The Trials (Project Paper Doll, #3)

Queen Levana from the Lunar Chronicles Series

Scarlet (The Lunar Chronicles, #2)

Luke from the Percy Jackson Series
I've only read the first thee books in this series so far, but Luke has been the source of a lot of problems for Percy and his friends.

The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #1)