AWARD: Unique Blogger

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Many thanks to Nel @ Reactionary Tales for nominating me for the Unique Blogger Award. I appreciate it. Nel and I chat every day and have lots to cover on our blogs. She’s always showing us the animals that need more attention, interesting posts with useful info and fun book reviews. Go check out her site if you haven’t seen it before. It’s unique!

 

The Rules:

  • Share the link of the blogger who has shown love to you by nominating you.
  • Answer the questions.
  • In the spirit of sharing love and solidarity with our blogging family, nominate 8-13 people for the same award.
  • Ask them 3 questions.

 

Questions:

If you could have your pick of book to make into movie, what would it be?

I’d like to see The Marriage Pact by Michelle Richmond made into a movie. I just read the book and it has some very interesting scenes which would play out well on screen. It has suspense, romance, mystery, historical touch points and a bit of crazy.

 

What inspires you most about your blog?

Connecting with people all around the world. Learning about new cultures and meeting different kinds of people. Opens up your eyes to more than just your own little world. 

 

What author inspires you?

This was a tough one, as I wanted to pick an author who has several books that are somewhat inspirational without being religious or spiritual. Perhaps Mitch Albom. I adored The Five People You Meet in Heaven.

 

What’s your favorite Disney song?

Pour Unfortunate Souls from The Little Mermaid or Circle of Life from The Lion King.

 


 

Nominations:

My three questions are:

  • If you could have an author create your perfect world, which author would it be and what would the world look like?
  • What person would you want to co-write a new blog site with? Why?
  • If you had to change jobs but could only choose from these 3, which one and why? Designer. Dentist. Mechanic.

 

My nominees are:

 

Note: If you’ve been nominated before or aren’t interested, feel free to skip. No worries! Congrats to all the nominations. 

 

About Me

I’m Jay and I live in NYC. By profession, I work in technology. By passion, I work in writing. Once you hit my site “ThisIsMyTruthNow” at https://thisismytruthnow.com, you can join the fun and see my blog and various site content. You’ll find book reviews, published and in-progress fiction, TV/Film reviews, favorite vacation spots and my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge.” Since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life… see how you compare!

365 Challenge: Day 102 – Independent

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Independent: free from outside control; not relying on another’s authority, livelihood or sustenance

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What a word! It’s often what people struggle and strive for. It’s used as a way to chastise someone if they are exceeding in their individualistic behaviors. It’s in a popular song. It’s part of war. It’s types of booksellers and publishers. It can be lonely. It can be a treasure you hold on to. It is something very different for each one of us.

I consider myself independent. I began working at 13, delivering newspapers. At 14 and 15, I worked in a bowling alley, teaching children to bowl and running the front desk. At 16 and 17, I was a grocery store cashier and stock boy. When I went away to college, my parents and I split the costs after any scholarships I’d received. For my part, I took out student loans and I worked on campus in the Education and English Department offices. And during summers, I waited tables and worked at a day care nursery managing a classroom full of 2-year-olds. It was instilled in me at a young age to work hard for what you want and to never rely on someone else to handle something that was your responsibility.

And I firmly believe in it now. To me, other people lending a hand is an additional layer of support, an extra of sorts, beyond what you should bake into your initial plan. It’s something you may need on occasion, and you should ask for the help when you truly need it, but don’t assume that is part of the solution for whatever it is you are trying to accomplish. This could be money, emotional support, a place to live, medical care, or anything else that requires assistance. Like most things I say or believe, apply the 80/20 rule, as it’s not a one-size-fits-all for every circumstance belief and approach. But as a general guideline in life, being independent is important to me and I recommend it to anyone else, at least wherever you can make it happen.

Independence is about freedom. Freedom to choose your own path, actions and destiny. Sometimes it is easy, but not always. Money is not always available even to begin working on a path that you want to take. Illness sits in the way from being able to choose what you want. Family obligations may be more important. But when you have the opportunity, leaning towards independence helps you become stronger and motivated. Make small changes. Start in tiny ways. See how it makes you feel. It can be scary. It can be fun. It can be rewarding. You’ll never know until you give it a chance.

I’m not independent in every aspect of my life. I’ve chosen to be in a committed, long-term partnership. I want to be with another person in my life journey. But I also recognize we’re not attached at the hip nor are we a single entity. We’ve made decisions about how to manage finances together, to co-own and care for a home, to raise a dog together, but at the end of the day, we are also separate people with individualistic needs and desires. Hopefully they always align and we work on them as we gracefully age together.

I think I’m the teddy bear in that situation!

I’ve noticed my attitude has changed over the years on some of these topics. And I pay close attention to the words my friends and acquaintances choose. For instance… when you invite a friend over or ask what (s)he did for the weekend, do they say “we” or “I?” Some people immediately refer to themselves as a couple. “We had friends over for dinner.” “We built a garden.” Others remain singular or separate. “Oh, I read a book. John/Jane went to the movies.” I’m not a psychologist nor have I studied these things, but I’m curious what that says about a person’s independence.

For as much as I claim to be independent, I almost always choose the “we,” assuming the person knows I am sharing a life with someone else. If it’s a complete stranger, sure, I’d probably just refer to myself as it would sound odd saying “we.” My mindset is independent on some things but dependent on others. We’ve made an agreement to split everything 50/50 in our household / life. So making decisions is sometimes a lengthy process. If one person wants to spend more money, we have to work through that conversation together, or accept the other person chooses to pay more because it’s more important to them. Given my other half has little interest/time in reading (he reads legal briefs all day at work), we tend to “go our separate ways” around 10pm. He watches TV in the living room for an hour, while I go to bed to read for an hour. Then he comes in when his show is over.

With friends, I am also very independent. I don’t ask for anything other than friendship. Sometimes I’ll complain a little bit and we end up talking through an issue, but I rarely pick up the phone and say “Hey, I need some advice, or I’m a bit down, can we do something?” I’m not saying this is the right or wrong way to be, by the way… it’s just how I am. I keep things to myself. I have something in my head that pushes me to be independent, rather than reach out to other people for help. If it were urgent, I’m sure I would ask for the help. But it’s not a natural reaction or notion for me. I try to do everything I can for myself, and then when I can’t, I will turn to someone else. Inclusive of big things and little things. When I bought new cars in the past, I didn’t ask for help until the very last moment. I did all the research, chose what I wanted and looked around. On each final trip, I asked my father to go with me for his input and then I closed. If I’m cooking, and I’m not sure what to do with a step in a recipe, I’ll wing it. Sometimes I’ll call my mom and get advice, but usually not. If we’re cooking together, yes — definitely work together on it.

So as I think about who I am… I’m pretty independent. I know I used to be co-dependent in relationships, but that’s a different story. I was young and immature. I’m much more open-minded these days. How about you? Do you define yourselves as dependent or independent? Not so much how you are in a relationship with your spouse, boyfriend or girlfriend, but generally in your approach with other people. Do you keep your distance, reach out for support or somewhere in between? There’s no right or wrong answer. We’re all shown a different way and then choose our own paths. Sometimes the answer is both– as it’s important to lean different ways, given the situation at hand. But like the 80/20 rule, I’d say I’m probably 80% independent and 20% dependent across the board.

Cause it’s scary inside my head! LOL

 

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay and I live in NYC. By profession, I work in technology. By passion, I work in writing. I’ve always been a reader. And now I’m a daily blogger. I decided to start my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge” where since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life.

The goal: Knowledge. Acceptance. Understanding. Optimization. Happiness. Help. For myself. For others. And if all else fails, humor. When I’m finished in one year, I hope to have more answers about the future and what I will do with the remainder of my life. All aspects to be considered. It’s not just about a career, hobbies, residence, activities, efforts, et al. It’s meant to be a comprehensive study and reflection from an ordinary man. Not a doctor. Not a therapist. Not a friend. Not an encyclopedia full of prior research. Just pure thought, a blogged journal with true honesty.

Join the fun and read a new post each day, or check out my book reviews, TV/Film reviews or favorite vacation spots. And feel free to like, rate, comment or take the poll for each post. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

365 Challenge: Day 101 – Sullen

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Sullen: bad-tempered and sulky; gloomy; depressed

sullen

“I did not get the job.” Most of us have said that before, and if you haven’t, it’ll happen one day. It’s rare to always get the things you want, especially when it comes to big things like an apartment, a house, a date, or a job. And when that happens, you probably get a little upset or depressed. That’s how I felt yesterday afternoon and was hoping it would dissipate by the time I woke up this morning. But it didn’t, and I was feeling a tad sullen as I arose from bed.

A bit of backstory to set the stage for those who don’t yet know me all that well. When I graduated from college, just as the country was preparing for Y2K, I had an English degree with minors in communication, Spanish, education and business. I wasn’t certain what to do with my career, but I wanted to be a writer during some part of it. The weekend I drove home after graduation, I faxed my resume to a bunch of jobs and was called immediately to come in for an interview as a project administrator and technical writer at a local company in my hometown.  Seventeen years later, I had parlayed that initial position into 6 or 7 promotions, culminating in the SVP of Technology role in one of the sister companies, owned by the same family. For a variety of reasons, not necessary to go into here, I left that company and role last year.

I was going to take some time off, finally do some writing and decide what I wanted to do with the rest of my life. In that time, I wrote a book and it’s been well received by some friends, family and beta readers I met via the Internet. I created a bunch of websites and blogs, connecting with thousands of people. I’ve read hundreds of books and drafted 500 book reviews. I’ve gotten a break from the insanity of the corporate technology life I was leading, where I worked 80 hours a week and could never put my phone down or ignore my email. I felt really proud and accomplished for all that I’d achieved since leaving my position to focus on the things I’d always enjoyed but never had time for.

The Christmas holidays came and left, and I started to get a bit bored. I began searching for a literary agent to help find a publisher for the book. I started looking for a job again, for a variety of reasons. Boredom. Money. Keep up the skills. Money. Connections. Money. By February, I had the resume in a good place. I started networking a little more. And I went on a few interviews. None of the jobs felt right, but it was important to practice the interview skills and to be open-minded. Nearly 4 months later, I’m still searching. I had a really strong series of interviews in the last month and I know it had come down to me and another person. A call was setup for yesterday to discuss next steps. I wasn’t feeling strong about it, as something told me this was a great job but I wasn’t going to be selected. Took the call late yesterday afternoon. “I did not get the job.”

Sullen. A bit sad. Tired. Depressed. Concerned. Scared. Lots of emotions and thoughts rolling around in the old cage at the top of my head. First, to set expectations: I’m totally fine. I’ve been told “no” before, and I’ve been told “yes” before. This isn’t about money. I’m not worried that I’ll never find work again. I don’t take it personally. I’m not looking for someone to help or even tell me it’ll be OK. Today’s post isn’t really about me feeling sad or depressed as much as it is a voluntary acknowledgement that my mood was affected by the call not because I didn’t get the job, but because it made me feel like I haven’t progressed as much as I would have liked in the last 11 months since leaving my former position.

And as I come upon the one year mark next month, I’m reflecting on what I’ve learned. I started the 365 Daily Challenge to push myself to be honest and truly analyze everything going on in my life. I wanted to be more open and connect with people around the world. I needed input on how everyone else made decisions in their lives in the hopes it would trigger a moment where I would figure out my own. I am a very happy person. I am very lucky. I have a wonderful and supportive partner. I am healthy. I have friends and family. I have a good outlook on all these things going on. But today I felt sullen over the call… sullen because after almost one year, I’m still unsure what’s next.

Do I continue looking for corporate positions where the money is good and I have a very structured life? Do I stay on a path for another year with writing and take short-term jobs to pay the bills? Do I truly try to break into a different career where I love my job and have passion all day? Where’s this 365 Daily Challenge going? I actually feel that maybe I do have something of value to say to my friends and acquaintances who read my posts. I’ve been so happy writing the book reviews and reading, maybe that’s where my heart is for the future.

Most of all, I am grateful that I have all these positive things going on in my life. It’s rare that people have this opportunity to step away from reality and give an alternate life a chance. And that’s why I am keeping my minor frustration, depression or disappointment in check. But I’m still human… so today I am sullen. Tomorrow it will get better. And well… that’s good enough for me. Sorry for the dull and possibly depressing post today. But you’ll always find the truth on ThisIsMyTruthNow.

 

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay and I live in NYC. By profession, I work in technology. By passion, I work in writing. I’ve always been a reader. And now I’m a daily blogger. I decided to start my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge” where since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life.

The goal: Knowledge. Acceptance. Understanding. Optimization. Happiness. Help. For myself. For others. And if all else fails, humor. When I’m finished in one year, I hope to have more answers about the future and what I will do with the remainder of my life. All aspects to be considered. It’s not just about a career, hobbies, residence, activities, efforts, et al. It’s meant to be a comprehensive study and reflection from an ordinary man. Not a doctor. Not a therapist. Not a friend. Not an encyclopedia full of prior research. Just pure thought, a blogged journal with true honesty.

Join the fun and read a new post each day, or check out my book reviews, TV/Film reviews or favorite vacation spots. And feel free to like, rate, comment or take the poll for each post. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

Review: The Marriage Pact

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The Marriage Pact4 out of 5 stars to The Marriage Pact, a thriller and suspense novel written by Michelle Richmond and set to be released on July 25, 2017. Many thanks to the author, NetGalley and the publisher, Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine Bantam, for the Advanced Reader Copy (ARC). I really enjoyed reading this novel and felt it had a lot of contained suspense, as I couldn’t put it down but it wasn’t the kind where you were scared; you just desperately wanted to know what was going to happen.



Why This Book


I’d seen the book on a few people’s Goodreads To Read or Currently Reading lists, and it looked interesting. I requested a ton of books on NetGalley to try to earn my 80% badge, and I got lucky when they approved this request.



Plot, Characters & Setting


Alice and Jake had been finalizing the list of 200 guests for their upcoming wedding when she won a big case at her law firm and felt compelled to invite one more guest and his wife: Liam Finnegan, a client who made a point of telling Alice’s boss how instrumental she was to winning the lawsuit. When they arrive home from their honeymoon, Jake and Alice open the Finnegan’s gift, an invitation given only to a select few to join “The Pact,” a group of married couples who call each other “Friend” and help ensure everyone’s marriage is successful. At first, it seems a bit odd but given their history as a couple, both think it’s a good idea and jump in with open arms. They meet Vivian, who is their guide for the initial few months, and begin reading the bylaws, a huge tome of a contract that dictates how often they must give each other gifts, plan vacations, see other Friends, talk to one another, et al. And if they do not, there are consequences with differing levels of punishment. As the weeks go by, Alice and Jake don’t take the group too seriously and begin accidentally committing minor infractions. The punishments begin, and it starts to completely unnerve them both. When they push back and try to leave The Pact, they’re essentially told “No one ever leaves The Pact. And The Pact never lets anyone go.” Alice and Jake attempt to follow all the rules, but work gets in the way, and Jake meets another Friend, whom he once knew before he was married. The woman tells him about the dangers of The Pact, but it’s too late to save themselves, she warns. Weeks go by where Alice and Jake try to balance everything, but frequently find themselves with intrusive and harmful punishments… all culminating in Alice’s disappearance and Jake flying to Ireland to find the creator of The Pact, in hopes he can convince the strange woman to let them leave.



Approach & Style


I read the novel through a Kindle Reader on my iPad. It has about 5200 lines, which works out to about 400 book pages. There are over 80 chapters, as each one is short and focused on a multitude of events happening in Alice and Jake’s lives.

The novel is told in past tense (with a few exceptions for present tense) and with Jake as the first person narrator whose point of view and perspective dominates the story.

It took me about 5 hours to read the novel. I read 20% the first day and then 80% the second day. I couldn’t put it down on the second day and only did so to go out for dinner. I found myself so interested in the middle section that I sometimes skimmed pages to get to the action, as I was shaking trying find out what was going to happen.



Strengths


The idea behind The Pact and the story is excellent. The divorce rate is too high. People take one another for granted. You’re often left on your own to solve marital issues unless you push yourselves to attend therapy. It sounds like a fantastic idea: a group of Friends meant to help you focus on your life as a couple, some rules and guidelines to ensure you are constantly thinking about the other person and minor punishments meant as little reminders not to get off track. But when it gets out of hand, and you realize this is more like a cult who like to torture one another, wow… the subtle actions and words really leave you right on the line, trying to decide is this really happening? Is this one bad apple making the group worse than it really is? Are they truly a cult or is it all a game? Who is behind this? And it quickly becomes a page-turner, where you don’t want to put it down.

The book can seriously play on someone’s fears about marriage. It makes you think what the point of it is, how and when you separate yourselves as a couple and two individual people. You see the love between a newlywed couple being ripped apart over minor issues in the hope that it will teach them not to ever let something big or bad happen between them. The intricacies of how The Pact always knows what’s going on, how they simply just accept what happens to them and the balance of power between all the couples… really gets you ignited and passionate over what’s right and wrong in this book. All good stuff, especially when you have such an emotional gut reaction to what’s happening. The descriptions of the behavior, the punishments and the setting really help create the suspenseful drama.



Concerns


When I read a book, I throw myself into it, usually letting most unbelievable things go if they are meant to drive the action or plot forward. I’m pretty forgiving when a situation happens that probably wouldn’t or couldn’t in real life. It’s a book. That’s what drama is for. If I want reality, I’ll look at my own life. And that’s what readers will have to do with this book — let some things go —
as there’s a 1 and a million chance something like this could ever happen, but there are at least 10 situations where some readers are going to say “No way. That’s ridiculous.” And they’re right, but then again, this is a story meant to entertain and scare you. So… I worry that some readers are going to be disgruntled with parts of the plot, and I can’t say much as I don’t want to give away spoilers. But a few easy examples… (don’t read the next paragraph as it’s not really a spoiler, but does give a bit of action away).

Why would a lawyer sign The Pact without reading it? How could they not go to the police? How did The Pact know things about Jake and Alice’s past? Why would you not ask the question to the leaders: “What should I do? If I don’t attend your meeting today, you will punish me. But if I miss this court date, I lose my job. It’s not that you aren’t important… but without a job, how do I live?” That last comment is in reference to a major part of the plot where Alice is asked to do something by the same person who is helping her move forward at the law firm… and if she does do what they ask, she’ll get in trouble at work. Something just didn’t jive well for me there. I kept thinking to myself…. ask them what they want you to do and stop saying “I just won’t show up to the meeting with the Friends.” At that point, they’d already been punished a few times… why??? And they also hadn’t read the full bylaws. I wanted to smack them for not reading the whole thing.

I loved the first 80% of this book. I put it down to go to dinner at a point where it was absolutely unreal and intense in the suspense and drama. I was so excited to finish it when I got home. And then I did. But the ending was not sufficient for me. It’s a good ending, but it wasn’t the one I wanted. Alice and Jake are essentially faced with a choice in the last few chapters, one which as they learn more about The Pact, they realize what has truly happened in the last few months. And they have a decision to make which is a good thing, but wow… I think I might not have done that if I were in their shoes!



Author & Other Similar Books


Michelle Richmond has several other books which I will definitely peruse, as I enjoyed her writing style, characters and plot very much in this one.

The story felt like a cross between “The Stepford Wives” and the movie “The Gift.” The people in The Pact all feel like a cult being controlled by someone behind the scenes as the Wellingtons do Stepford. And Jake and Alice receives strange gifts with scary alternative meanings and consequences as occurs in the movie “The Gift.”



Questions & Final Thoughts


I really like this book despite a little concerns with the ending. It’s the kind of book where I want to keep talking about it. But I won’t give away spoilers. So… a choice for you: (1) Read the book and then let’s talk about it, as there is a lot to say, or (2) Don’t read the book and we can talk about it but I’m gonna reveal all the spoilers so you totally understand it!



About Me


For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

View all my reviews

TAG: Rapid Fire Books

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Many thanks to ReadRantRock&Roll for posting this tag and encouraging me to give it a chance. You must check out Jenn’s site, as she has amazing content and is such a sweet person. Her blog has everything you need and want to know about life, food, health, books and fun. This one is the Rapid Fire Book Tag and it appears to have been originally made by GirlReading over Youtube, so be sure to stop by and check her out HERE.

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Question 1: E-Book or Physical Book?

I was always a physical book reader, but I’m learning to like e-readers. I download through Kindle Reader on my iPad and read in bed when my other half is sleeping. Less light than a book light, and I can easily switch back and forth to check Goodreads!

Question 2 : Paperback or Hardback?

No preference. I rarely get hardback books anymore, as I read new ones when they first come out by getting them through NetGalley or other ARCs; they’re e-reads most of the time. And when I buy older books, I go for the paperback because they are cheaper and I don’t really keep books anymore — unless it’s a high 4 or 5 rating. Can’t find a space for everything unfortunately. But I love seeing all the books! 

Question 3 : Online or In-Store Book Shopping?

Both. I was always an in-store book shopper, devastated when they started closing up. I had a Barnes and Noble two blocks away, and we’d go every other weekend to peruse the shelves and buy a few books. It closed for a year’s worth of supposed renovations, and the nearest one is 20 blocks away. I love book stores, but that’s 30 minutes each way, which is a lot of time to lose. I started buying more online or getting books thru ARCs at that point. But if the brick and mortar tore opens up again, I’ll be back.

Question 4 : Trilogies or Series?

It doesn’t matter… I love serial fiction. Something about staying with the same characters and setting is fundamentally natural to me.

Question 5 : Heroes or Villains?

Villains all the way. I want the good guy or girl to win out, but ultimately, I love it when the villain wreaks havoc across the entire cast!

Question 6 : A book you want everyone to read?

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. It’s about a book, so readers must love books if they are reading, right? The Holocaust is a tough subject, but this book has a fantastic balance with an ethereal quality to Liesl as she struggles to survive.

Question 7 : Recommend an underrated book?

I don’t know! I would have to comb through my Goodreads list of read books, but off the top of my head, I think more people need to read Kate Morton’s historical fiction and mystery books. It has everything from characters to plot to suspense to beautiful lyrics without getting too far off the deep end or caught up in scenery description.

Question 8 : The last book you finished?

No Turning Back by Tracy Buchanan. A mystery and suspense thriller about a woman who kills a teenager to protect her young infant. But how is it connected to The Ophelia Killer from twenty years ago? Come on, you know you wanna find out! 

Question 9 :The Last Book(s) You Bought?

Hidden Bodies by Caroline Kepnes. It’s the follow-up to the first in the series, You, where a psycho stalks someone and then finds himself with an even bigger issue.

Question 10 : Weirdest Thing You’ve Used as a Bookmark?

A plastic bag. I was on a train and that’s all I had left from the Starbucks scone I purchased as a snack before heading out to Long Island to visit my parents.

Question 11 : Used Books: Yes or No?

Yes, I’m OK with used books. I often borrow from the library in my co-op building. We have about 30 shelves of nearly 1200 books… I’m always finding something to read when in between ARCs (which never happens anymore) or purchases. 

Question 12 : Top Three Favorite Genres?

Mystery. Thriller & Suspense. Historical Fiction.

Question 13 : Borrow or Buy?

Buy. I tend to look for new books 90% of the time and then pick-up ones from other people or libraries about 10% of the time. It’s just a matter of time and what I want to read. ARCs come first. Then series I enjoy reading (so I have to buy the new book). And last, I search for new things or books on my TBR. 

Question 14 : Characters or Plot?

Both, but plot edges out slightly. I can connect to a book with a great plot but bad characters; however, if the plot is boring, I won’t be happy. 

Question 15 : Long or Short Books?

I think I prefer middle, can I say that? I like to read a lot, so shorter makes more sense. But I need depth in a story, so they tend to be longer. Oh… it hurts… Longer. Longer books if I had to choose. Please stop harassing me with these choices!

Question 16 : Long or Short Chapters?

Short chapters all the way. Helps keep focus and find break points for food, sleep and errands.

Question 17 : Name The First Three Books You Think Of…

 

You by Caroline Kepnes. Just bought the follow-up book.

The Mother’s Promise by Sally Hepworth. Sticks in my head.

Watch Me Disappear by Janelle Brown. Just read it last week.

Question 18 : Books That Makes You Laugh or Cry?

Cry. I like to laugh, but in a book, I want emotion.

Question 19 : Our World or Fictional Worlds?

I like both, but I enjoy reading historical fiction more than fantasy.

Question 20 : Audiobooks: Yes or No?

I have never tried one, but I want to… need to find a new book to try. Any recommendations based on what I like reading?

Question 21 : Do You Ever Judge a Book by its Cover?

Yes. If I don’t know the title, author or the cover doesn’t look good, I won’t usually read it without a strong recommendation.

Question 22 : Book to Movie or Book to TV Adaptations?

Since I like serial fiction, probably TV series adaption. It lasts longer.

Question 23 : A Movie or TV-Show You Preferred to its Book?

I’m not sure I preferred the movie adaption, but I thought Lord of the Rings was just as good in both formats.

Question 24 : Series or Standalone?

Series all the way! Couldn’t you tell from the previous answers?!?!   😛


 

I am not tagging anyone specifically as this is the kind of tag everyone should do. So please jump on this little bandwagon! I expect at least 5 people to go for it! 🙂

 

About Me

I’m Jay and I live in NYC. By profession, I work in technology. By passion, I work in writing. Once you hit my site “ThisIsMyTruthNow” at https://thisismytruthnow.com, you can join the fun and see my blog and various site content. You’ll find book reviews, published and in-progress fiction, TV/Film reviews, favorite vacation spots and my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge.” Since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life… see how you compare!

 

365 Challenge: Day 100 – Morbid

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Morbid: characterized by or appealing to an abnormal and unhealthy interest in disturbing and unpleasant subjects, especially death and disease.

morbid

Today, we are celebrating life and death on ThisIsMyTruthNow’s 365 Daily Challenge. And before you go any further, I mean no offense nor to cause any trouble with this post, as it’s intended with humor and jest; however, I acknowledge it also reveals a little bit about my sense of humor. This is going to be an interesting one, but I promise no GIFs with gore, although I do love them.

This is my 100th post in the 365 Daily Challenge. I thought about the number 100 for a few minutes, discovering what it really means to me:

  1. The perfectionist in me always strives to get a score of 100 on any tests or exams (assuming that’s the highest mark). What a nerd!
  2. I’m very in tune with history, time and genealogy, which makes the concept of 100 years, or a century, very important to my research and interests.
  3. I’d like to live until I’m at least 100 years old. I plan to be healthy, active, youthful and still have all my wits about me. The way I look at it… as a kid, I always acted at least 5 to 10 years older than I was, and that continued up until I was around 30 when acting like I was near retirement… I finally gave up and said… act your age. So now… as I start growing older, it’s time to regress a little. By that logic, when I’m 100, maybe it’ll be like I’m really 50. So this is all gonna work out quite well for me. Hope to see you all then, too!

To put a few points around these rambles… hitting the milestone 100 posts in the 365 Daily Challenge today made me feel kinda good. I will also have completed 500 book reviews by next week, which has been a lot of work. And I just made 600 followers on WordPress. A nice little celebration this week… Life on WordPress has been great!

So now you’re asking why is the title of this post “morbid?” Well… I have a slight fascination with death and horror. And life and death balance each other out… so I thought I’d combine the two into this 100th post. A bit morbid, right? Ever since I was a young kid, I’ve always wondered about death — in a very healthy way. Big curiosity over what happens when someone dies, where they really go, do you get a second chance, are there really past lives, can you haunt someone? That kinda stuff. And whenever there’s a book, film or TV show that covers these topics, I love it!

My favorite place to go by myself is a cemetery or a graveyard. I find them relaxing. I feel connected with things. To see all the history. The memories. The missing pieces. The lost. The pain. The hope. Sometimes a little scare or fear at night. It’s a place that feels real to me, which is quite odd, given that it’s the place things that are no longer “real” go after life. I’m odd. I know it. I accept it. But it’s the truth. And that’s what I say on this site.

I also love gore. When movies or films get right in there and show all the horrible, nasty and disgusting things happening to bodies or people who’ve been murdered, it keeps my attention. For almost everyone I know, they close their eyes or leave the room; some even get sick. Not me. I’m good with seeing it all. I have some strange ability to turn off the “scary & squeamish” part and look at it more subjectively. That said… I’ve never been injured myself, so I have no idea what might happen if it were my own body with the issues. I know I get this from my dad, as he’s the same way. Blood, gore, surgery… none of it bothers him. Apparently, we’ve got strong stomachs for that kinda stuff. The only way to describe it is “morbid.”

When I read books like Paradise Lost or Inferno (Dante), I wish I could be part of that exploration. It’s not that I want to see the pain in or on other people, but it’s to gain knowledge about the broad concepts of life and death. It’s more intellectual for me… not like I want to sit around and watch people be dismembered just for fun. OK, well that’s not true… I do love serial killer books and movies, especially when they come from nowhere and make me jump just a little. I root for the serial killer. In theory. Not in real life, of course. That would be wrong. I know that much. 😛

By now, you probably agree… I’m morbid. You may even think I’m quite peculiar and extraordinarily scary. But… as you know… I don’t hold back in these 365 daily posts. So no need to worry whether I’m a secret psycho. A psycho wouldn’t put all this out for the public to read. And it’s a good thing this stuff all makes me laugh and have fun. I could be morose about it; and most people think of morbid and morose together. I’m the opposite. I see morbid as a fascination and morose as doom-n-gloom. Aren’t you glad you read today’s post?

Who would have thought combining the 100th “365 Daily Challenge” post would lead to me talking about serial killers, whacking people’s heads off and wondering when I might die!?!?!! Anyone else out there like me? Or do you run for the hills when it comes to this kinda stuff?

To Be or Not To Be: That Is The Question

(morbid, that is… to be or not to be morbid?)

 

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay and I live in NYC. By profession, I work in technology. By passion, I work in writing. I’ve always been a reader. And now I’m a daily blogger. I decided to start my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge” where since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life.

The goal: Knowledge. Acceptance. Understanding. Optimization. Happiness. Help. For myself. For others. And if all else fails, humor. When I’m finished in one year, I hope to have more answers about the future and what I will do with the remainder of my life. All aspects to be considered. It’s not just about a career, hobbies, residence, activities, efforts, et al. It’s meant to be a comprehensive study and reflection from an ordinary man. Not a doctor. Not a therapist. Not a friend. Not an encyclopedia full of prior research. Just pure thought, a blogged journal with true honesty.

Join the fun and read a new post each day, or check out my book reviews, TV/Film reviews or favorite vacation spots. And feel free to like, rate, comment or take the poll for each post. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

Review: The Great Gatsby

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The Great GatsbyBook Review
4+ out of 5 stars to The Great Gatsby, written in 1925 by F. Scott Fitzgerald. I read this book the summer before I went away for college. Knowing that it took place in the 1920, a time period I adored, on the Gold Coast of Long Island, where I lived, and the main character’s name was Jay, like me, how could I not make it a priority? And I’m so glad I did. It’s a fantastic story with so many components and a ton to say about life. The characters felt so alive. The setting and the description felt familiar. The actions seemed to call you to jump inside the book. It was a phenomenal read for me… and the only reason I held back a 5 is because I felt there were a few too many caricatures drawn on people from the time period. Though it comes close to being accurate, it took a few points too far. Where it could have held back, showing a few more realities, it stepped into a bit of quick-sand for me… pulling people’s views to the extraordinary instead of the familiar. I had the same reaction to some of the film versions. All that glitters is not gold, and I don’t know that Fitzgerald wanted those areas to be the primary thing people took from the novel. There was more beyond it. But it’s one of those books that really gives you a perspective unlike any other about the things that happened both out in the open and beyond closed doors.



About Me


For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by.

View all my reviews