Shelf Control – December 30, 2015

Shelf Control

Shelf Control is a weekly feature hosted by Bookshelf Fantasies.  Consider this a variation of a Wishing & Waiting post… but looking at books already available.  Take a look at your shelves and/or Kindle and post about a book you own but haven’t read yet.

 The Lost Continent: Travels In Small Town America
Author:  Bill Bryson
Published: August 28th 1990 by William Morrow Paperbacks (first published 1989)
Length: 299 Pages

Goodreads Summary: ‘I come from Des Moines. Somebody had to’

And, as soon as Bill Bryson was old enough, he left. Des Moines couldn’t hold him, but it did lure him back. After ten years in England, he returned to the land of his youth, and drove almost 14,000 miles in search of a mythical small town called Amalgam, the kind of trim and sunny place where the films of his youth were set. Instead, his search led him to Anywhere, USA; a lookalike strip of gas stations, motels and hamburger outlets populated by lookalike people with a penchant for synthetic fibres. Travelling around thirty-eight of the lower states – united only in their mind-numbingly dreary uniformity – he discovered a continent that was doubly lost; lost to itself because blighted by greed, pollution, mobile homes and television; lost to him because he had become a stranger in his own land.

The Lost Continent is a classic of travel literature – hilariously, stomach-achingly funny, yet tinged with heartache – and the book that first staked Bill Bryson’s claim as the most beloved writer of his generation.

How I Got It: I bought it used at my town’s annual Hospital Auxiliary Book Sale.

When I Got It: Earlier this spring I think?  I don’t remember if it was this year or last year.

Why I Want To Read It: I loved Bill Bryson’s A Walk In The Woods and so I just had to get all of his other books.  I haven’t read any others yet.

Top Ten Books I Read In The Last 3 Years

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly original meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.  Each week there is a new topic.  This week’s topic is: Top Ten Books You Would Classify As ALL TIME FAVORITE BOOKS from the past 3 years (you can extend it to 5 if you need to).

I am going to go with books that I read in the last three years because I haven’t always had the chance to read new releases right away.  So in no particular order….

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What are some of the best books you read in the last few years?

Book Review: A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson


Summary: Bill Bryson recounts 5 months spent hiking the Appalachian Trail.  Pretty short summary but it is filled with humor and when he is not writing about his personal experiences he provides interesting information and anecdotes regarding the trail’s history.

Review: I have been wanting to read this book for YEARS!  I was lucky enough to receive it as a gift from my awesome secret Santa this year.  I was so excited to read it.  It is also the first book I will be checking off on my 2015 TBR Pile Challenge.  I just have to say how much I loved this book.  So many times I found myself laughing out loud or wanting to read a portion of it to my husband.  I was also very interested in the history of the trail.  One thing that really interested me was the fact that the trail seems to be always changing.  Rerouted due to some new road or other being built.  And how there never seems to be a consensus on how long the trail actually is.  I guess part of that can be attributed to the fact that it is changing so much.  Hearing all of his experiences and the people he met on the trail made me a little jealous.  There was nothing else I wanted to do besides load up a pack and go hit the trail!  Of course I am not in shape and don’t have the money for all the hiking equipment so for now I’ll just have to make do with the easier state park trails in my area (well, when winter is gone anyways).  I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who has an interest in the great outdoors, hiking or humorous travel accounts.

Five out of five stars.

2014 TBTB Secret Santa


I received my gifts today from my Secret Santa!  Thank you so much to Jennifer at The Leaning Stack of Books for such awesome presents!  My hubby was at home when the package arrived and he sent me a Snapchat of the box… I could not wait to get home and open it!

IMG_20141217_191119When I opened the box I found all of these goodies inside!  I debated opening the chocolate right away but in the end, I just couldn’t wait to see what was underneath the wrapping paper!

IMG_20141217_191801And behold, my gifts!  When I started to open A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson I only had to see the bottom corner of the book and I jumped up with excitement!  I think I scared my cats a little haha!  The other two books she got me were Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Bronte.  I have always wanted to read all three of those books and now I finally can!

She also got me the coolest bandaids ever created!  Jane Austen!  I didn’t even know they made those!  I told Ethan that I couldn’t wait to cut myself so I could use one.

The final gift is the awesome candle holder.  It’s called a Glassybaby.  They are handblown in Seattle.  10% from the sale of every Glassybaby is donated to organizations dedicated to helping people, animals and the environment heal.  Jennifer tells me that the proceeds from this particular Glassybaby go to an organization called First Book, which helps provide access to new books to children in need.  How great is that?!  Plus look how beautiful it looks with a tealight glowing inside!

IMG_20141217_193811So I thank you again, Jennifer!  Everything you picked out for me was perfect!

I am already looking forward to participating in next year’s secret santa exchange!

30 Day Book Challenge – Day 16

30 Day Book ChallengeDay 16: A book you wanted to read for a long time but still haven’t

This post was an easy one for me.   For as long as I can remember I’ve wanted to read this book but still haven’t done it.  I’ve seen it at Half Price Books a few times but never pulled the trigger and I don’t really go the library as much as I should.

A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail by Bill Bryson

I’ve always wanted to read this book but for one reason or another haven’t gotten around to reading it.  Maybe that should be my goal for next year.  Read it at some point by the end of 2015.